Tuesday, May 24, 2011

be cheerful. strive to be happy.

Have you ever heard of the Desiderata (Latin for desired things)? It is one of my favorite poems, and really serves as a good reminder of how to live ones life, I think. I found this little postcard on etsy a few months back, and I keep it on my desk at work, to motivate me.

Love it.

I was poking around etsy earlier and found this desiderata cuff bracelet, which I really, really want. I don't often wear bracelets, but if I do, I prefer the cuff style, to something with a chain.


The Desiderata was written in 1927 by Max Ehrmann, but wasn't really known until after his death, and now has become somewhat of a devotional. It is just so lovely and so true and reminds me to try to be a better person. When I get married, I want it read at the ceremony.


The Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexatious to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love, for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment, it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be. And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.


What words inspire you and keep you moving? What is your favorite poem? Favorite quote?


Valerie and Jeff said...

Wow. It is lovely.
I found this poem in Grad school ... right about the time I discovered the Tao te Ching which is something that I found inspiring as well--both of these helped form underpinnings for my creative thesis for Grad School. But this poem especially is so beautiful and remenicent of verses from the Bible, no doubt the source of his inspiration. Thanks for posting about this today--I needed it! Yes, strive to be cheerful it is a beautiful world despite so much drudgery and sadness. God has a way of providing so much for us. He loves us so much.

Elizabeth said...

i had never seen that poem before but i absolutely love it. positive thinking and seeing the good in things are some of my top goals this year.

Sarah said...

Perfection...love this! Love the bracelet too!!

miss celie k said...

I love Desderata! I've forgotten about it. Thanks for the reminder...