What does one of the greatest authors of all time know? A lot! The man who wrote amazing novels, such as War and Peace, and lived an incredible 82 years through many of the 1800’s and ten years of the 1900’s, had a knack for seeing things as they were, including how people’s actions determined their purpose and character in life. He believed that everyone was accountable for themselves, and he believed that one person could influence the world – which he did and still does to this day. Following are some Leo Tolstoy quotes that resonated with me.
1. Some (Ridiculous) Beliefs Never Change!
While all of Leo Tolstoy’s quotes still apply today, I’m surprised at this one. How long will it take us to figure out that it is not all about beauty? How long will it take us to stop defining things by how they look? I would be interested to go forward another 100 years from now and see if this quote still applies then. Even though we are starting to get messages that beauty doesn’t define how good someone or something is, I think the fact that we bought into it for so long as a society means that it may take a while for this delusion to disintegrate!
2. How Not To Be Bored
I used to have some friends that were always bored. I never was, and I couldn’t understand why we were so different until I realized that I always had something I was working towards. My friends lived day by day, waiting to see what would happen, and so when nothing was happening, they were bored. If you feel bored, ask yourself what you are working towards? Do you have dreams and goals? If not, and you are tired of being bored, then it’s time to figure out what you want out of life and get busy working towards it.
3. Not Getting What You Want?
I have a friend who runs a dating blog for men, and he constantly hears guy’s complaining about how they can’t find a woman to date. Ironically, for guys who can’t find a woman, they have some pretty serious standards about what they want. Many guys want a traditional woman who is a virgin, has no undesirable history, and is willing to have kids and take care of the children. Is it a coincidence that men looking for their version of the perfect woman can’t find her? I think not!
Perfection is only in your mind. You can imagine things exactly how you want, but in real life things don’t play out that way. Once you let go of the way experiences, things, or people have to be, you will be much happier with the experiences, things, and people that come into your life.
4. Think About How You Eat
The rest of the passage that this quote was taken from states that any man who kills an animal for food does so just so he can taste meat and not out of survival. This is true. We can survive without eating meat.
It is amazing to think that Leo Tolstoy became a vegetarian the very same day he had a discussion with Mr. William Frey during an afternoon in 1885 about why being vegetarian was a great way to eat. While this quote is a shining example of why some people choose to be vegan or vegetarian, it also speaks of the insight needed in order to understand what you are eating instead of just blindly eating whatever comes into your path. You can, and should, eat things that help you be healthy without compromising the environment or putting chemicals into your body.
5. What’s The Most Useful Thing Leo Tolstoy Could Say?
Leo Tolstoy said that the most important and useful advice he could give was the above quote. And, I have to agree, it is pretty useful! We spend so much time getting caught up in making money and working that we forget to look up and enjoy life. In the end, it won’t be the amount of hours you put in that makes you feel good about your life, it will be the amount of time you spent really living your life, so don’t miss the chances you have to live it!
6. Speaking Of Living Life…
Leo Tolstoy implied that life does not need you to defend it because it can defend itself. Therefore, instead of holding on to what has happened or what will happen, live your life in the moment. Your body is organized for living right now, so do what it does best!
7. You Have Control Over One Big Area Of Life
We all think big when we think about doing better things. We want to create a happier and healthier world, and we try to think about how we can do that on a big scale. But, the truth is that your focus should start with yourself. You should be focused on making your life happier and healthier because you have complete control over that! When you do, you will find ways to influence the world in a positive way.
8. You Know Nothing
Out of all the Leo Tolstoy quotes, this is definitely one of my favorites. Remember it the next time you want to fight with someone about what is right or wrong. Remember it when you are going to tell someone how they should live, talk, act, work, or something else. Remember that the highest degree of wisdom you can have is to recognize that you don’t anything for sure. You know what you’ve seen, been taught, and believe, but there are always different perceptions and ways of doing things.
9. Stop Telling Others How They Feel
The answer is no. You can’t tell someone how they feel or should feel. You can only sympathize with them and help them shift their perception. The friend who runs the relationship blog for men has found this out the hard way. People don’t want to hear how they should feel. They feel how they feel for a reason. They are hurt or scared or lonely and their feelings are valid to them. You simply cannot tell anyone how they should feel, so stop trying.
10. Stop Trying To Change Others
When we start to love someone, we generally accept them for who they are. We like them. We find them interesting. But along the way we start to try to change them into somebody more like us. It doesn’t work like that. They don’t want to be like you, nor should they have to be. If you are going to love someone, love them for who they are, and if you can’t, then let them go so they can be loved by someone else who accepts them for who they are.
11. A Million Wrongs Does Not Make A Right!
Just because a million people think that scamming other people is alright does not make it alright. There are some things in life that are unethical, immoral, horrible, and just plain wrong. It doesn’t matter how many people jump on board, you shouldn’t feel the need to join their cause just because the majority says you should. Stand your ground for what is right in your life and in the world.
12. It Is Human Nature To Have Faith
We are all born with faith. Maybe not faith in a God or something grander than ourselves, but faith in being good, faith in the strength of humanity, or faith in the world keeping us safe. If you are alive, then you have faith of some sort. Remember that when you are dealing with someone who is being rude or intolerable. They have some sort of faith inside of them that makes them human, and when you can tap into that faith, you can start to relate to them on some level.
13. You Make Up Your Reality
If you always find yourself in a state of suffering, then you are to blame. You are who is always making your own decisions. You are choosing who chooses to do something over another. You are choosing who chooses how to think, act, react, and live. You choose how healthy or unhealthy you are going to be. And all of these choices can either uplift you or torment you. If you choose something better for yourself, then you will experience much more pleasure in your life.
14. Make Your Own Opinions In Life
This quote came from a passage where he was talking about how we complain about the senseless way of life, but we don’t do anything about it. We choose live life unconsciously instead of opening up our awareness and living it on our terms.
Being like everyone else can help you be accepted into the majority, but it won’t help you feel good about yourself and your life. Moreover, it won’t have the power that living in your own truth and expression has. Can you imagine if someone like Leo Tolstoy decided to blend in and not use his unique thoughts and expression to help influence the world? In order to live a happier life, with a happier reality, make your own opinions. Don’t let yourself be pulled back and forth between other people’s opinions. Use what is right for you, be yourself, and you will find yourself feeling much better about life.
15. Give, Give, Give
Life is not just about you. Yes, you are in control of how you think and feel about life, but if you live a life solely based on pleasing yourself, you are missing out on real joy. The real joy lives in helping other people by giving yourself, your time, and your energy to other people. When you see the good that you are doing for others and the world around you, your confidence, self-worth, and value in life increases.
16. Listen To Your Inner Guide For Peace
If you want more love and peace in the world, then start by listening to your conscience – the inner voice that tells you what is right and what is wrong. When it comes to hate and war, it will always tell you what you should do for more happiness and what you should do for more unhappiness, and then you get to choose whether you stifle that voice or listen to it.
17. It Hurts To Live Against What You Know Is Right
This is one of the Leo Tolstoy quotes talking about the men of his time and how they would all shoot themselves if there was no means to dim their consciousness and live opposite of what they know is right. This still applies today. So many people are living a life against what they know is right – right for them and right for the people around them. It’s no wonder that depression and stress are so rampant. Living against what you know to be right can have a very negative effect on your happiness and health.
18. Just Let It Be
This pretty much sums up how to be happy. In order to be happy, stop trying to become someone you don’t want to be. Stop holding onto the past that you don’t like or trying to change it. Stop fighting others. Stop complaining about what is. Stop resisting the reality that confronts you every day. Stop choosing to focus on thoughts that don’t serve your life. Just be. Be present. Acknowledge what is happening and allow it to be without the resistance that easily makes you angry or hurt. When you let it be, your whole world will change and life will take on a whole new meaning.
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