Posts by Stephanie Van Hook

“Move the heart”–Daily Metta

June 22: “I have come to the fundamental conclusion that if you want something really important to be done, you must not merely satisfy reason, you must move the heart also.” –Gandhi (Young India, October 14, 1926) Tell a smoker all the good reasons to quit smoking, show them facts and statistics, and watch what… read more

“Yoga and nonviolence”–Daily Metta

June 21: “The object of the various exercises [of Hatha Yoga] was to strengthen and purify the body in order to secure control of the mind.” –Gandhi (Harijan, October 13, 1940) Before yoga was a quasi-spiritual, multi-billion dollar global industry of pants and other products, it was a sacred practice, developed to move the body… read more

“World Refugee Day”–Daily Metta

June 20: “I will give you a talisman. Whenever you are in doubt, or when the self becomes too much with you, apply the following test. Recall the face of the poorest and the weakest man [woman] whom you may have seen, and ask yourself, if the step you contemplate is going to be of… read more

“Debunking innate aggression”–Daily Metta

June 19: “No one should dogmatize about the capacity of human nature for degradation or exaltation.” –Gandhi (Mahatma, Vol. V, April, 1940) Human beings are naturally violent. It’s our nature. We’ve all heard this a time or two. It’s called “innate aggression theory,” the school of popular psychology that maintains that human beings are just… read more

“The ideal and the practice”–Daily Metta

June 18: “The propositions from which I have drawn my arguments are as true as Euclid’s definitions, which are none the less true because in practice we are unable to even draw Euclid’s line on a blackboard.” –Gandhi (Young India, October 8, 1925) Remember the story from June 17th’s Daily Metta about the scorpion and the… read more

“Ahimsa is the highest ideal”–Daily Metta

June 17: “Ahimsa is the highest ideal.” –Gandhi (Harijan, June 9, 1940) Ahimsa is an ancient Sanskrit term and virtue that roughly translates to “the negation of the desire or intent to harm or kill.” Gandhi went so far as to assert that it–and not violence–is the law of humanity. Our capacity to endure and… read more

“Understanding history”–Daily Metta

June 16: “We are constantly being astonished these days at the amazing discoveries in the field of violence. But I maintain that far more undreamt of and seemingly impossible discoveries will be made in the field of nonviolence.” –Gandhi (Harijan, August 25, 1940) Distinguished historian J.B. Kripalani had a run-in with the Mahatma that he… read more

“Begin with the mind”–Daily Metta

June 15: “Nonviolence to be a potent force must begin with the mind.” –Gandhi (Young India, April 2, 1931) One day a young man approached Gandhi and told him that someone  hit him, and he felt humiliated but did not fight back. Wouldn’t “Bapu” (a term used to address Gandhi, meaning father) be proud of him… read more

“A love story”–Daily Metta

June 14: “True happiness comes from health and true health is impossible without a rigid control of the palate.” –Gandhi (Guide to Health, 1930) Gandhi and his wife, Kasturba, were married as children, at 13 years old, in an arranged marriage. In many ways they grew up together, and as Gandhi grew in his understanding… read more

“Diversity and Democracy”–Daily Metta

June 13: “How can there be room for distinctions of high and low where there is this all embracing fundamental unity underlying the outward diversity?” –Gandhi (Young India, September 24, 1921) The word ‘unity’ can make some people cringe. It can make it possible to overlook the experiences of those who have been systematically oppressed,… read more