So That Is What’s Possible

In the 12/27/13 issue of Entertainment Weekly, Stephen King ends his review of the book, The Interestings, by Meg Wolitzer, with this:

The Interestings addresses one of fiction’s great themes: how we make peace with our own shortcomings and make the best of ordinary lives.

It’s a great theme in real life as well: How do people rearrange and rebuild their lives when dreams die hard?

Like most people, I’ve seen countless friends and acquaintances aim for careers and stardom in creative fields like acting, singing, painting and writing, only to end up frustrated and disillusioned. The cold, hard truth is that most of them lack the talent to succeed in such pursuits. Yes, with enough time and effort and a willingness to learn and grow, sometimes what talent they do have can be developed enough to get them where they want to go. But all too often, these starry-eyed dreamers either lack the capacity to make good on their dreams or the dedication and discipline required to sufficiently develop their skills.

We are always telling our children that they can do whatever they want to do with their lives, that they can be whatever they want to be. Such simplistic and unrealistic encouragement can do more harm than good unless we also emphasize the thousands of hours of practice that they will have to put in before the world will take them seriously.

All of which brings me to the point of this post: Even if you never develop the talent to be the superstar you imagined you could be, that doesn’t mean you’re doomed to live an ordinary life. You can lead a rich, fulfilling and rewarding life by dedicating yourself to become something that any of us and all of us are capable of becoming: a pure instrument of divine love.

I know this to be true from my own experience. The kinder I am to others, and the more loving and compassionate I become, the happier I am and the more good I do in the world. If my books never become bestsellers, if I only ever make enough money to barely scrape by, so be it. The riches of the kingdom of heaven are already mine because I have touched the lives of hundreds of people and left them better for it.

You can do this too. Yes, by all means pursue your dreams, but at the same time, dedicate yourself to be the living embodiment of kindness, compassion and generosity of spirit. By doing so, you can make a greater impact on the world than by doing anything else you ever dreamed of.

A few days ago, I ran into a young man named Kunal. I had met him once before at a gathering of devotees of the spiritual path I follow. Each time, we only spoke for a minute or so, but the impact he made on me is significant. The divine joy and peace he radiated were almost palpable; his eyes shone with love and compassion. If anyone judges him on any criteria other than who he has become as a human being, they will be missing the point. He inspires me to be a better man. The world is in desperate need of virtuous, kind-hearted people like Kunal whom others can gaze upon and think, So that is what’s possible.

Yours was not meant to be an ordinary life. The secret to living an extraordinary life is transitioning from living selfishly for your own happiness to living selflessly for the happiness of others. A funny thing happens when you do that. You will find that acting selflessly is paradoxically a selfish path because it is a gateway to personal peace, fulfillment and more joy than you ever could have imagined.

I slept and dreamt that life was joy.
I awoke and saw that life was service.
I acted and behold, service was joy.
Rabindranath Tagore

Click here to view all my posts on the transcendent power of kindness.


Phil is the author of Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World, a comprehensive guide to living a spiritual life. Who will benefit from reading it?

Anyone who is on a spiritual path, or wants to start one
Anyone who loves life, or wants to learn how to
Anyone who is happy, or wants to be happier

To order your copy of Through God’s Eyes, go to OR order from Amazon at OR for an inscribed copy, click here to e-mail Phil for information.

Click here for more information about Through God’s Eyes.
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Through God’s Eyes won first place in the “Spirituality and Inspirational” category at the San Diego Book Awards on June 22, 2013.

Here is a two-minute video introduction to Through God’s Eyes.

Want to learn more about Through God’s Eyes? Here is a free 40-page PDF sampler from the book that includes:

• an overview of the book
• the complete table of contents
• the Foreword by Caroline Myss
• my Introduction
• chapter excerpts
• a sample end-of-chapter story
• endorsements from authors and thought leaders

Just click on the link below to download your free PDF sampler!


Phil’s eBook, The Logic of Living a Spiritual Life: Supporting a Life of Faith Through Logic and Reason, is now available for 99 cents on Amazon.

Order it at

In this eBook, you’ll find answers to questions like:
• What is the cornerstone of a spiritual life, and why?
• What is the secret to liberating yourself from other people’s judgments and expectations?
• Why is there an exception to “Everything happens for a reason”?

Those who worship logic instead of God are only half right. Not only is it logical to believe in God and to live a faith-based life, the existence of a loving, benevolent God that governs all creation is perhaps the only systematic worldview that explains every aspect of life.

Schedule a Mastery Mentoring phone session with Phil to learn how to apply principles of spiritual living more effortlessly and effectively. Priced affordably! Click here to e-mail Phil for details.

SiSe_fullcover_final.inddPhil is also the author of Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything, a collection of 45 inspiring, life-changing stories from prominent people he interviewed, including Joan Borysenko, Deepak Chopra, geneticist Dr. Francis Collins, acclaimed sportswriter Frank Deford, Dr. Larry Dossey, Wayne Dyer, Dan Millman, Caroline Myss, Dr. Christiane Northrup, Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen, Dr. Bernie Siegel, James Van Praagh, singer Billy Vera, Doreen Virtue, Neale Donald Walsch, and bassist Victor Wooten.

Here is a three-minute video that introduces you to Phil and his book. Click here to order Sixty Seconds. Click here to ask Phil to add you to his e-mail list for updates on his blog and books.

Reading this book is like spending a few minutes face to face with each of the contributors and listening to their personal stories. Click here to read unsolicited testimonials from readers. Learn more by visiting the official Sixty Seconds website.

Sixty Seconds was one of three finalists in the General Interest/How-To category at the 12th annual Visionary Awards presented by COVR (Coalition of Visionary Resources) in Denver on June 27, 2009.

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