Feeling Great: Creating a Life of Optimism, Enthusiasm and Contentment

Feeling Great: Creating a Life of Optimism, Enthusiasm and Contentment


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Feeling Great: Creating a Life of Optimism, Enthusiasm and Contentment by Peter Vegso, Dadi Janki, Kelly Johnson

Why do we lose our ability to feel great? And what is 'feeling great' anyway? Is it really possible to feel great in today's world where every day there is some new crisis or disorder? Some new upheaval or unexpected negativity? Where violence is rife? Is feeling great out of place or insensitive to the reality of many people's lives?

This treasure of a book calls on decades of spiritual study and practical experience to answer these and other essential questions. You will learn what it really means to 'feel great' – and it might not be what you expect.

You will discover that feeling great is not about having a good time for a few hours, or having money to spend. It's about putting your life in order and remembering who you really are. It's about practicing the four keys revealed in this book—enthusiasm, optimism, contentment, and respect—then learning how to start acquiring and applying them. The authors' rich descriptions of the sticking points we encounter on our journey through life demonstrate how we can recover our ability to truly feel great – not as a temporary indulgence, but as a lasting state of being.

Now is the time to start feeling great, and this uplifting book shows you how easy it can be.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780757318399
Publisher: Health Communications, Incorporated
Publication date: 04/14/2015
Pages: 216
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x (h) x (d)

About the Author

Peter Vegso is an entrepreneur and pioneer of self-help publishing, best known for being the original publisher of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. Vegso has been having a diverse and open dialogue with God for most of his life. His appreciation of Dadi Janki and the mission of the BKWSU led them to this special collaboration. Originally from Canada, he has spent the last 30 years in Boca Raton and Ocala, Florida, where he enjoys life with his wife of 40 years, Anne, their children and three very active grandsons.

Dadi Janki is a woman of wisdom. Her life's journey has been a fulfillment of her early childhood longing to know and come close to God.

Dadi was born in 1916 in India to a devout and philanthropic family. She had no formal education beyond the age of fourteen, her studies being mainly of the scriptures. At the age of twenty-one she joined the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University and has dedicated her life to the spiritual service of others.

Disregarding the constraints of social conventions including the caste system, Dadi Janki became one of the few active women spiritual leaders just following India's independence, traveling throughout India, teaching self-reliance and empowering women to become leaders in their communities. Her concern for the well-being of others has always been a driving force in her life. Much of her youth was spent in serving the sick by comforting them with religious stories and humble prayers. Indeed, her own life has been filled with illness, which tested and helped her to develop her own ability to conquer physical infirmity through greater spiritual awareness.

Dadi campaigns for truth and works tirelessly for world peace. She travels worldwide, teaching and sharing her wisdom and deep spiritual knowledge. She is a soul who refuses to set limits and boundaries as to what is achievable and, in so doing, inspires other to believe that they, too, can make the impossible possible. Recognized worldwide for the depth and insight of her lectures and spiritual classes, her words of wisdom have given wings to countless souls.

Since arriving in London in 1974, Dadi has overseen the expansion of the Brahma Kumaris' work in more than 70 countries and is now the university's co-administrative head. Dadi is one of the Wisdom Keepers, an eminent group of spiritual leaders convened at United Nations conferences. She is also founder and president of the Janki Foundation for Global Health care and vice president of the World Congress of Faiths.

The Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University's purpose is to help people explore their highest level of personal integrity and the attributes of leadership. This unique method of education in human moral and spiritual values was initiated in 1936 and is currently offered in over 70 countries.

Kelly Johnson has worked in the publishing industry for many years reading, selling and marketing other people's books. When the opportunity to write Feeling Great with Peter Vegso and Dadi Jankli came along, it was an unexpected honor. Johnson gratefully lives near the sea in Satellite Beach, Florida, writing and doing the work she loves.

Read an Excerpt


Is it possible to feel great in today's world, where every day there seems to be some new crisis or disorder? Some new upheaval or unexpected negativity? Where violence is so rife? Should we even strive to feel great? Maybe it's out of place or insensitive to the realities of other people's lives?

This little guide draws on years of spiritual study and practical experience. Included are rich descriptions of the sticking points we encounter in our journey through life, and also the keys to making progress as we recover our ability to feel really great—not as a temporary indulgence but as a lasting state of being.

We learn, for example, about the gravity of negativity, when encumbered emotions such as resentment, wounded pride, and rejection hold us down and drain the goodwill and spontaneity from our lives.

Enthusiasm, optimism, and contentment are among the keys that can free us from such chaos. We learn that these qualities spring from faith in the goodness of the Self and life. This faith returns to us when we start to understand the wonderful Tree of Humanity and the eternal seed through which it is renewed.

In essence, it is love that enables us to feel great. Love is in all of us, but in order to flourish, it needs to be tended with spirituality. When we demand love from the world around us, we destroy our own ability to receive it. We must nurture it within ourselves and live it overtly, because only then can we experience the joy of both giving and receiving it. When we truly experience and practice that kind of love, we have learned to live authentically, and there is no greater feeling than that.

Dadi Janki: The Experience of Light

Ever since I was a little child, I had been looking for God, longing to have an experience. At the age of nineteen that desire was finally fulfilled.

It happened one day while I was out for a walk with my father. As we were walking, I saw Brahma Baba, the founder of this spiritual institution, the Brahma Kumaris.

As I watched him approach, I had what some would call a vision—an experience of light. It was a very special, beautiful moment that finally quenched my thirst to find Him. In that experience, I was filled with the sensation of being with God . . . of having truly found God.

In that instant, I felt completely separate from my body. I was aware that my physical father was responsible for creating my physical body, yet I knew that I really belonged to that Light—the Being of Light—God.

My heart was overwhelmed and it responded, 'You are my Father. I want to become like you.' I was completely filled with His joy.

God has so many beautiful qualities: peace, joy, love, purity, strength, truth . . . I have always wanted to have the same attributes in my own life; however, despite my devotion to God for all those years, those qualities were difficult to cultivate, and instead I harbored a lot of fear, attachment, and worry.

Yet, as soon as I had that moment of recognition, as soon as I said, 'God, I belong to you,' it was as if those godly qualities started to emerge within me and my negative tendencies began to leave—I simply no longer claimed ownership of them.

When I talk about seeing the Light of God, I do not mean seeing a flash of light. When the third eye of wisdom opens, it is also called light—the light of knowledge and the light of understanding. That light allowed me to remember—that is, to recognize—my own true Self and my own true Parent.

Experiencing the Light of God means having a sense of recognition—something inside you shifts. An understanding from deep within begins to surface . . . it is as if a hidden memory has been awakened and you are flooded with the recognition of who you really are and what God really is. In that moment of recognition, you no longer connect to the lower consciousness of yourself as a body, and with that disconnection, that release, you, too, become light.

Once I asked God, 'Did you find me, or was it that after all my searching I finally found you?' The reply that came was, 'You weren't searching for me all that much. It was I who was looking for you.'

• • •

The Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University is a global community of people learning how to increase their ability to live with love. Find more information at www.bkwsu.org, including a guide to the location of centers across the world.

Peter Vegso: An Encounter with Peace

I was nine years old when I had a most remarkable encounter that years later I would find myself still trying to understand. But all those years of questioning eventually led me to realize that, if you are able to dissect an experience and label it, you inherently lose the magic. Some things are simply meant to be felt and contemplated because it is only in that sensory state that we discover true meaning, and we are able to touch a whole different facet of life.

It was at my grandparents' farm in the beautiful eastern township of Québec that my experience took place.

It was a day like many other days in the glorious Canadian countryside. My fifteen-year-old brother, John, and I were riding with our neighbor in his horse-drawn wagon—my neighbor sat at the reins, I rode in the middle, and my brother sat beside me. In those days, our neighbor would take the wagon to buy feed for his cattle, and often my brother and I would ride along. On this day, we stocked up and headed back to the farm, heavily laden with 100-pound bags of feed.

As we were nearing home, I decided to jump off the wagon because we were close to our driveway. My brother noticed what I was about to do, and since we were still moving he shouted, 'No!' As a typical nine-year-old boy, I simply ignored his warning and leaped off. As I did, he instinctively grabbed on to me to pull me back, but it was too late. Instead of getting pulled safely back into the wagon, or jumping without incident off to the side, his reach changed my trajectory and I fell straight down. I don't remember the back wheels of the wagon rolling over me, but they did—right through the middle of my body.

But that was no little feed wagon . . . it was an old horse-drawn type with four very large wooden wheels with iron rims. The weight of the wagon alone rolling over me would have made it nearly impossible to survive, but adding hundreds of pounds of grain made it even more so.

When I opened my eyes, I seemed to be in the middle of nowhere, then I realized I was not on the ground but on a cloud, and looking into a bright calm ahead. I felt hopeful—great even—yet I distinctly sensed that I was no longer in my own body. From that place of peace and calm, I looked around. On my right I saw another cloud—it was gray with a throng of people lined up, yelling, and waving their arms, beckoning for me to come over. I didn't know what to make of them, I didn't recognize a single face, yet they kept shouting, calling me over. But I didn't see a pathway there, nor did I feel compelled to go; they frightened me.

It was then that I noticed another cloud, just beyond the shouting crowd, that contained what appeared to be a park. Walking through the park was a well-dressed couple pushing a Victorian baby carriage—rather like the English prams that women of Knightsbridge use to this day. The couple was handsomely clothed—she in a long black dress with an elegant bonnet, he in a dark suit topped with a fashionable black chapeau. I never really saw their faces, but their images were perfectly clear.

Observing them strolling through the park, I was still somewhat aware of the gray cloud to my right with the people shouting. But, focusing on the couple in the park, I had a sense that everything was just as it belonged—that something important was taking place.

Just then, in the far distance, I heard someone yelling. I recognized my brother's panicked voice shouting at me to get up, and I felt that I should go back . . .

I awoke to the sound of my brother calling to me and to the look of alarm in his eyes. I scrambled to my feet, dusted myself off, and looked at his frightened face. 'I'm good,' I told him. 'Let's play.'

Even though, as an adult, I had heard about near-death and out-of-body experiences, it had been many years since I thought about that incident. But the memory never left me—I can still see the images completely unobscured, and I can still feel the pleasant sensation of being there—that hasn't changed at all. But one thing did change that day—that experience would leave me sure and secure in myself from then on. I would never be afraid or worry—about anything.

But what does it all mean? Was the experience real, or was it the product of a child's overactive imagination? Was God speaking to me? Was the gray cloud a place of purgatory? Who was the couple in the park with the baby carriage? I've thought about all of this many times over the years now. I find peace in remembering—the calm, the pleasantness, the light.

I don't think I'll ever understand what happened or what the vision really means, but that warm, calm, peaceful feeling I'll never lose—it was a profound, wonderful, and wonder-filled moment of feeling great. And there would be more to come . . .

Kelly Johnson: Contemplation and Restoration

I never had a spiritual 'aha moment'—that life-changing awakening that comes like a smack on the back of the head from Special Agent Gibbs of NCIS. It just never happened.

I grew up a 'preacher's kid' in the Bahamas with wonderful, compassionate parents. My father was a local Bahamian minister who married a lovely American missionary girl who never went back. From them, I learned a lot about caring and sharing, morals and ethics, and I learned the importance of having a true relationship with God, but I never learned how to develop intimate communion—that connection to the Divine that only comes with soul-searching and meditation. But maybe that's something that can't actually be taught.

I was just into my fifties when a life crisis hit hard. Somehow I found myself sailing off into the ocean without a rudder, unable to stay my own course. This was a whole new and terrifying experience—my natural resilience and independence were gone. Feeling physically and emotionally disconnected, pure fear led me to reach out for something that would ground me—something that I had nudged into the margins of my life years before. Intuitively, I knew that the restoration I sought would take time and effort to attain, and it wasn't going to happen easily.

Yet it did happen. Over a period of several months, I began to recall a little book that I had read earlier in my life, The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence, a seventeenth-century French Carmelite monk. A man of humble beginnings, Brother Lawrence discovered the greatest secret to living in the kingdom of God here on earth: the art of 'practicing the presence of God in one single act that does not end.' He often said that it is God who paints Himself in the depths of our soul; we must merely open our hearts to receive Him and His loving presence.

Over the next few months, as the fog began to lift from my mind and heart, I also rediscovered The Pursuit of God, by the late A. W. Tozer. This book so beautifully and profoundly impressed on me the importance of experiencing—and practicing—the basics and letting go of dogma and convention. These things can be so contrived and narrow-minded; instead focus on developing true yoga—a connection to the Divine—which can only be done in solitude and contemplation.

Finding God in meditation and nature has been the practice of religious mystics, Buddhist monks, Kabbalists, yogis, and others since the beginning of time. Even Jesus went off by Himself over and over again—occasionally for great lengths of time—to meditate and converse with His Father.

As these luminaries found their way back into my life story, I began to forge a fresh course to safety. One of the things that became eminently helpful to me during that time I learned from reading the blog 'Wanderings of the Whiskey Priest.' The blogger gleaned this particular lesson from a Benedictine Monk, Brother Edward of Belmont Abbey: 'breathe in God' (he said he did this 'like he was whispering the secret to the universe'). As the Whiskey Priest so intuitively revealed, 'We've gotten used to thinking that prayer is something you do, like eating your vegetables, instead of a quality of life that you breathe in, and a response that you breathe out. But 'breathing in God' is a life you experience, not simply a concept to understand.'*

Just the other day, my mother and I were having lunch together, and we got to talking about wholeness and the need to care for both our physical self and our spiritual Self. At eighty-two, no matter what time she goes to bed at night, she's wide awake by 2 am. Eventually, she learned to just get up and accept the couple hours of sleeplessness instead of fighting them. Now she gets out of bed, puts a kettle of water on the stove, and asks God to sit and have tea with her. Right there in the kitchen, in the very early morning hours, they spend time in quiet communion.

So, what's my point with all of this? Simply that, no matter what your personal beliefs and practices are, be persistent and patient but pursue an experience of God. In your car, in your kitchen, in an ashram—wherever you are. That's how you construct a rudder and steer through the winds and tides.

As you read this little book, I hope you will be blessed and nourished by it. And as you venture off on your own voyage, I hope it steers you in a meaningful direction—toward enthusiasm, optimism, and contentment—because they will invariably lead to a lifetime of feeling great.

*Living the Benedictine BIG Life by James Johnson. WhiskeyPriest.org

©2015 Dadi Janki, Peter Vegso, Kelly Johnson NAME. All rights reserved. Reprinted from Feeling Great: Creating a Life of Optimism, Enthusiasm and Contentment. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the written permission of the publisher. Publisher: Health Communications, Inc., 3201 SW 15th Street, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442.

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Feeling Great: Creating a Life of Optimism, Enthusiasm and Contentment 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
toReadistoEscape 7 months ago
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. This book was worth reading if you are struggling with depression. There were many good affirmations and constructive suggestions to change your negative thought patterns. I gave it four stars because I did not enjoy the examples and parables. I found them hard to relate to and not very insightful. Much of the information we already know. However, when you are feeling blue it helps to hear it again and reflect on the information. It reminds you that everyone goes through periods where you feel depressed or feel you have lost your purpose. But you do not need to let that feeling last forever. You can take control of your thoughts and feelings and begin to enjoy life again. If this review was helpful to you please click the link below.