Posts by Stephanie Van Hook

“Hugging Meditation”–Daily Metta

May 16: “Perfection in love or non-possession will remain unattainable ideal as long as we are alive, but towards which we must ceaselessly strive.”  –Gandhi (My Religion 1935, p. 412)    Gandhi always wanted to bring together the best of the East and the West as he developed his nonviolence. Vietnamese monk, spiritual activist Thich… read more

“Conscientious Objector”–Daily Metta


May 15: “I must not suppress the voice of conscience.” –Gandhi (My Nonviolence, p. 201-2) We all know about Memorial Day, President’s Day, and “Columbus” Day, but did you know that there is an international holiday to celebrate the courage of the Conscientious Objector? That’s right. The date of May 15 marks the recurrence of… read more

“An honest person”–Daily Metta

May 14: “Openness of mind strengthens the truth in us, and removes the dross in us if there is any.” –Gandhi (Mind of Mahatma Gandhi, p. 342) One day I received an email with a very generous offer: Would the Metta Center like to acquire my father’s Gandhi collection? This man’s father happened to be the author… read more

“A child’s devotion”–Daily Metta

May 13: “Without devotion, action and knowledge are cold and dry, and may even become shackles.” –Gandhi (The message of the Gita, p. 26) When Gandhi was a little boy, he notes, while in school, he rarely had the time or the inclination to read books that were not assigned for class. One book–a play–… read more

“Charlie Chaplin meets Gandhi”–Daily Metta

May 12 “If God ever sent me to the West, I should go there to penetrate the hearts of the masses, to have quiet talks with the youth (…) and have the privilege of meeting kindred spirits–lovers of peace at any price save that of truth.”  –Gandhi ( Mahatma, vol II, p. 417)  In his… read more

“Into the arms of nonviolence”–Daily Metta

May 11: “Whatever cannot be shared with the masses is taboo to me.” –Gandhi (Harijan, 11-2-1934, p. 303) While popular figures and politicians today fly around in private jets and claim to be servants of the people, Gandhi wanted to show his dedication to the principle we would today call “servant leadership” by living with… read more

“Gandhi had a mother”–Daily Metta

May 10 “The outstanding impression that my mother has left on my memory is saintliness.” –Gandhi (Autobiography, p. 4) (See photo below of Gandhi with his mother.)    While Gandhi had many influences in his life, none was greater in his spiritual development than his mother, Putilbai. A very earnest spiritual aspirant, Putilbai upheld in… read more

“Rescuing Peace from War”–Daily Metta

May 9: “I can say with confidence that if the world is to have peace, nonviolence is the means to that end and no other.” –Gandhi (Harijan, 7-20-1947, p. 243) Aristophanes, the Greek comic playwright, used his craft as a means for opening the hearts and minds of his ancient audience to urgent truths, and his work remains… read more

“An insight from Kasturba Gandhi”–Daily Metta

May 8: “The pursuit of Truth is true bhakti (devotion).” –Gandhi (Yeravda Mandir, p. 4) The night before morning prayer meetings, Kasturba Gandhi used to memorize the prayers shared from the various religious traditions. During prayer time, she would close her eyes as words were slowly, purposefully recited, and let them sink deep into her… read more

“Unknown Peacemaker”–Daily Metta

May 7: “My seventy years’ experience has taught me that the truly great are often those of whom and of whose greatness the world knows nothing during their lifetime.” –Gandhi (Harijan, 12-10-1938, p. 77)   We have all heard of the grave of the Unknown Soldier, but have you come across a national monument to… read more