Elizabeth and John G. Bennett

A Joyful New Year!

“Enjoyment is indispensable. Without enjoyment our life cannot be normal. When you enjoy you do not waste energy. If you have something that you call enjoyment and you find that energy has been wasted, there is something wrong with it.

“All real enjoyment is as good, from the point of view of energy production and conservation, as suffering. It is as necessary to enjoy as it is to suffer. One must learn to enjoy in such a way that one doesn’t destroy what one is doing. It is the mechanical confusion of pleasure and enjoyment. Enjoyment of every kind is good: enjoyment of food, enjoyment of sex, enjoyment of beauty, enjoyment of one’s own body is good and all pleasure is bad. How can one learn to enjoy and not have pleasure? Enjoyment is necessary; pleasure is identification. Enjoyment is freedom. Unless you can learn to distinguish between these two, you will lose. Pleasure doesn’t relax; enjoyment relaxes. You drink; one glass you enjoy, the second glass is different. One glass is relaxation, enjoyment, increased energy. Two glasses: it is pleasure, identification, loss of energy. From one you remain satisfied; from the other you remain dissatisfied. One must know this. It is not easy because we forget. We forget that every part of our life is significant.”_John G. Bennett

“No one can do our work for us, but J.G.B. left us with all the materials that we need, and with his own quiet example of service to direct us to the freedom that he himself achieved before he left this world.
It is clear that his memory can only live in the work of those who studied with him; that only by patient persistence in our own personal work can we repay our debt to him and his teachers and encourage others to attempt the same path. Anyone who works on himself benefits the whole of our universe, but in a narrower sense the only way in which we can benefit personally from J.G.B.’s labours is in working on ourselves and stretching out a hand to others, as he never failed to do.”_Elizabeth Bennett