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Finding Inspiration: 5 Brilliant Stories

The world is filled with remarkable individuals that are constantly inspiring us with their tales of bravery, kindness or outlooks towards life that resonates and leaves a mark on us that we proceed to take with us wherever we go. Below are five inspiring stories featuring some of the most inspiring individuals you would be lucky enough to meet.

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#1 Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

Maharishi was the most extraordinary, inspiring person I ever met.

Maharishi was the happiest person I ever encountered. He fully embodied his favorite slogan, “Life is not a struggle; life is bliss.” He frequently cracked jokes and laughed at himself. His joy was contagious. Much of the time, those in near vicinity were in stitches. He was bliss in the flesh. The press dubbed him “the giggling guru.” His robust laugh was described by reporters as “an irresistible invitation to join him in a huge joke—even if one was not at all sure what the joke was, whether it springs from his understanding of some sublime, specific truths or from his recognition of the idiocy of mankind in general.”

Contributor: Susan Shumsky from

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#2 Leonard Bernstein

I remember uncle Lenny (as he was introduced to us kids) at my friends' birthday parties. Smiling and friendly he spoke Hebrew mixed with English. He was the conductor of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra at the time and we were children of its musicians. I'm talking about composer/conductor Leonard Bernstein, who would have celebrated 100 years next month. He inspired us all to go all the way with what we love, to relish and share our enthusiasm with the world.

Contributor: Natalia 'Saw Lady' from

#3 Marilyn

One of the most inspiring people that I have met is a cancer survivor (on her death bed more than one time), mom of two, wife, and former newscaster. Her name is Marilyn. What makes her uniquely special is her ability to tell a story in an authentic voice, to find the beauty in things most others can’t, and her beautiful fighting spirit that makes her the bravest person I know. When she shares her journey, she has people in tears. Her story is layered with many complexities that make it very interesting – and highly inspiring, including a brother who suffered from a mental illness during her battle with cancer. Her story of family, faith, hope, and humbleness are heart filling and have lessons that extend to everyone.

Contributor: Romy Taormina from

  1. Marilyn is my sister and I agree with everything Romy said, my sister is a bright light in our lives and I am humbled by her everyday!

#4 Brennan Besser

From Seattle to New York City, Brennan Besser, a Duke University Men’s Basketball player, will bike, walk and run across America this summer to raise awareness and donations for the intellectual and developmental disability (IDD) community.

“Brennan has contributed in so many ways to our program, whether it be in preparation, spirit, or work-ethic -- he's a one-of-a-kind walk-on. I love him, and the spirit he brings is infectious on this team. Nothing he does surprises me, because almost everything he does is not about him. It's about his talents, his emotion and his effort to help others. This is a terrific thing that he's doing this summer and he'll accomplish so much for so many people.” - (Quote from his coach.)

Contributor: Molly Lynch from

#5 Caroline Boudreaux

After witnessing the harsh realities faced by orphaned children in the developing world, many of whom suffer greatly from hunger, disease, and a lack of love, Caroline Boudreaux founded Miracle Foundation in 2000. The Austin-based international nonprofit is dedicated to empowering orphaned children to reach their full potential.

Caroline’s work with Miracle Foundation has become her life’s work. For eighteen years, she has tackled foreign barriers, recruited a world-class board and staff, and enlisted the help of hundreds of business people, doctors, donors and volunteers to fix a broken system. To date, Miracle Foundation has given thousands of orphaned and vulnerable children around the world a childhood that would have otherwise been impossible. What’s more, the children grow up in a happy, healthy, loving environment and can look forward to a future that includes vocational training or even a college education.

Contributor: Jeff Salzgeber from

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Written by James Metcalfe

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