Click here to Download A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book by Leo Tolstoy Language English having PDF Size 1.4 MB and No of Pages 326.
This was Leo Tolstoy’s last major work. With it, he fulfilled a dream he had nourished for almost fifteen years, that of “collecting the wisdom of the centuries in one book” meant for a general audience. Tolstoy put a huge amount of effort into its creation, preparing three revised editions between 1904 and 1910. It was his own favorite everyday reading, a book he would turn to regularly for the rest of his life.
A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book by Leo Tolstoy
|Name of Book||A Calendar of Wisdom|
|PDF Size||1.4 MB|
|No of Pages||326|
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About Book – A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book
The original idea for this work appeared to come to Tolstoy in the mid1880s. His first recorded expression of the concept of A Calendar of Wisdom—“A wise thought for every day of the year, from the greatest philosophers of all times and all people”—came in 1884. He wrote in his diary on March 15 of that year: “I have to create a circle of reading for myself.
Epictetus, Marcus Aurelius, Lao-Tzu, Buddha, Pascal, The New Testament. This is also necessary for all people.” In 1885, he wrote in a letter to his assistant, Mr. Chertkov: “I know that it gives one great inner force, calmness, and happiness to communicate with such great thinkers as Socrates, Epictetus, Arnold.
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Parker…. They tell us about what is most important for humanity, about the meaning of life and about virtue…. I would like to create a book … in which I could tell a person about his life, and about the Good Way of Life.” The process of collecting these thoughts took over fifteen years. Tolstoy began writing between December 1902 and January 1903.
Then in his late seventies, he had fallen seriously ill; while meditating about the meaning of life and death, he was inspired to begin compiling what he then called A Wise Thought for Every Day. When he finally sent the book to his publisher, Tolstoy wrote in his diary: “I felt that I have been elevated to great spiritual and moral heights by communication with the best and wisest people whose books.
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I read and whose thoughts I selected for my Circle of Reading.” He would often return in his diary to meditate upon this book, repeating variants of “What can be more precious than to communicate every day with the wisest men of the world?” Tolstoy carefully selected the contributors to this volume, “among the very best writers,” as he repeated to his colleagues and friends.
They represented a wide variety of philosophical views, cultural backgrounds, and historical periods: “It will be a big surprise to the readers,” Tolstoy wrote, “that together with Kant and other famous thinkers, they will find in my book thoughts by Lucy Malory, an unknown journalist from the United States, from Oregon.” The first edition appeared in 1904 under the title Thoughts of Wise Men.
It saw three editions during Tolstoy’s lifetime, between 1904 and 1910, each published with a different subtitle: The Way of Life, Circle of Reading, and A Wise Thought for Every Day. There are two different states of human existence: first, to live without thinking of death; second, to live with the thought that you approach death with every hour of your life. A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book
The more you transform your life from the material to the spiritual domain, the less you become afraid of death. A person who lives a truly spiritual life has no fear of death. When you have doubts about what to do, just imagine that you might die at the end of that same day, and then all your doubts will disappear, and you will see clearly what your conscience tells you, and what is your true personal wish.
A man condemned to immediate execution will not think about the growth of his estate, or about achieving glory, or about the victory of one group over another, or about the discovery of a new planet. But one minute before his death a man may wish to console an abused person, or help an old person to stand up, or to put a bandage on someone’s injury, or to repair a toy for a child.
Sexual desire is the most all-consuming of desires. This desire is never sated, for the more it is satisfied, the more it grows. Very often people are made proud by their control over their own desires, and by the force and passion with which they master them. What a strange delusion! Many people worry, and suffer, because they have been involved in so many bad things in their lives. A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book
In truth, though, good things often happen in spite of our wishes, and sometimes even in opposition to our wishes, and often after our excitement and suffering over unworthy things. Remember how passionately you yearned in the past for many of the things which you hate or despise now. Remember how many things you lost trying to satisfy your former desires.
The same thing could happen now, with the desires which excite you at present. Try to tame your present desires, calm them; this is most beneficial, and most achievable. All people of the world have an equal right to the privileges of this world. Equality cannot be reached, as some people think, only by civil measures.
It can be reached only by love of God and people, and this love can be reached, not by civil measures, but only as the result of spiritual learning. They say that equality is not possible, because some people will always be stronger or smarter than others. But it is exactly because of this, said Lichtenberg, precisely because some people are stronger and smarter than others. A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book
That the principle of equality is necessary. The advantages of the rich over the poor demonstrate not only inequality of force and intellect, but inequality of civil rights. Christ revealed to humanity those things which their best selves already knew: that people are equal because the same spirit lives in all of them…. Learn from the small children, behave like children.
And treat all people on an equal basis, with love and tenderness. If truth makes our life easier, then it is better to accept the truth than to hide from it. Our life can be changed, but the truth cannot be changed: it will always remain the truth, and it will expose us. We should live our lives as if everyone could see us, as if the most secret corners of our soul were open to the sight of others.
Why should we hide anything? You cannot hide anything from God. All divine and human learning can be summarized in one truth—that we are members of one big body. Nature united us in one big family, and we should live our lives together, helping each other. Science can be divided into an infinite number of disciplines, and the amount of knowledge that can be pursued in each discipline is limitless. A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book
The most critical piece of knowledge, then, is the knowledge of what is essential to learn and what isn’t. A huge amount of knowledge is accumulated at present. Soon our abilities will be too weak, and our lives too short, to study this knowledge. We have vast treasures of knowledge at our disposal but after we study them, we often do not use them at all.
It would be better not to have this burden, this unnecessary knowledge, which we do not really need. When I die, only one of two things can happen: either this essence which I understand as myself will transform into a different being, or I will stop being a separate individual and become a part of God. Either possibility is good. Death is the destruction of this body with which I understand the world in this life.
It is the destruction of the glass through which I look at the world. And we do not know whether this glass will be replaced by another; or whether the essence which looks through the window will integrate with the world. We cannot know this. There is a certain limit to the appropriate length of any time in this world. A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book Download
Just as the fruits and vegetables are limited by the seasons of the year, everything should have its beginning, its life, and its ending, after which it should pass away. Wise people willingly submit to this order. The moving force of all perfection, both for individuals and for whole nations, is not the understanding of what exists in this world, but the understanding of what can be achieved.
The weaker my hands, the more effort I should make to achieve perfection. “You must be as perfect as your father in heaven.” The perfection of the highest kindness is the goal for which all mankind strives. Christian learning about perfection is a tool for all mankind. A person who sails far from the shore can see some shore-lines or cliffs.
But when sailors go really far away from the shore, they can be guided only by the stars high up in the sky, and the compass which indicates their direction, and both these things are given to us. No matter how low a person may fall, he will always be able to see that perfection toward which he should move. A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book Download
For a person, for an animal, indeed for any living being, there is neither logic nor meaning in the word “freedom” because all our lives are limited by many constraints. And yet if a person understands himself as a spiritual being, he cannot even speak about not being free: the idea of not being free cannot be applied to the notions of intellect, conscience, and love.
Remember that your understanding of your inner self holds the meaning of your life, and it makes you free if you do not force it to serve your flesh. The human soul which is enlightened by understanding and freed from passions, and lit with the divine light, stands on a firm foundation.
The foundation of love is in each person’s understanding of the unity of the divine spark which lives in all people. All that brings unification to people is goodness and beauty; all that brings separation among them is evil. All people know this: it is firmly inscribed on our hearts. Every good or charitable action, every unprofitable assistance which supports other people in need. A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book Download
When we come to its origins and foundations, becomes a mysterious and unexplainable thing, because it comes out of the mysterious understanding of the unity of all living beings, and it can be explained by nothing else. My material life is subject to suffering and death, and no effort of mine can release me from suffering or death. My spiritual life is subject neither to suffering nor death.
Therefore, salvation from suffering and death lies in only one thing: in the transfer of my conscious “self” from the material to the spiritual. The way to understand this world is to understand your inner self. With the help of love, and by virtue of the love of others, we understand other beings.
People, animals, plants, stones, heavenly bodies; and we understand the attitudes of these beings to themselves; and these attitudes create the whole world as we know it. The way to understanding is based on love, on unification with all other creatures in the world. Knowledge is a tool, not a purpose. People know little, because they try to understand those things which are not open to them for understanding. A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book Free
God, eternity, spirit; or those which are not worth thinking about: how water becomes frozen, or a new theory of numbers, or how viruses can transmit illnesses. How to live your life is the only real knowledge. People who think that the most important thing in life is knowledge remind me of a butterfly who flies into the flame of a candle, and in so doing burns, and extinguishes the light.
The title “scholar” suggests that a person has gone to school, and that he studied, but it does not mean that he has acquired any truly important knowledge. If you are a material being, then death is the end of everything. But if you are a spiritual being, then the body limits your spiritual being, and death is only a change. Our body limits the spiritual divine spark which we call our soul.
In the way that a vessel gives form to the liquid or gas which is put into it, our body gives form to our spiritual being. If the vessel is broken, that which was in it no longer retains the form it had and flows out. Does it receive a new form? Is it united with other beings? We know nothing of this. After death the soul becomes something different, something indescribable. Death is one step in a continuous development. A Calendar of Wisdom PDF Book Free