Quiet Thoughts - Quotes
Every man knows when his life began... If I did not exist in the past, why should I, or could I, exist in the future? ... The purpose of man is like the purpose of the pollywog-to wiggle along as far as he can without dying, or, to hang onto life until death takes him.
Now I beg of you to tell me whether I must love a human being simply because he exists or resembles me and whether for those reasons alone I must suddenly prefer him to myself?
Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm but to add color to my sunset sky.
If people bring so much courage to this world the world has to kill them, so of course it kills them. The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places. But those that will not break it kills. It kills the very good and the very gentle and the very brave...
A Farewell to Arms
Life's a dance, you learn as you go. Sometimes you lead, sometimes you follow.
All day the darkness and the cold
Upon my heart have lain
Like shadows on the winter sky
Like frost upon the pane
When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you sometimes find that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.
Life is eternal and love is immortal, and death is only a horizon... and a horizon is nothing, save the limit of our sight.
I know my name
it limps across blank pages
crutched with a pen
Two children with wool socks
and a waxed floor
couldn't make this day better
Break up the foundations of existence and build anew. There are many books on stark reality... about the disease of existence. Without denying that there are such existences but far from musing on death, I assert that a human can steer toward a higher fate, a more valuable conclusion... and, risking a trite expression, live a happier life. Perhaps this is the soft underbelly of a book exposed to the modern world: to say that one can be happier and more valuable without a "beyond" ... that one can not only learn to be content with reality, but can aggressively pursue greater and greater joy.
The "Good Life" is not the destination but the road, and a very narrow and winding road at that. Always just ahead we find a sharp turn toward a need so petty that we refuse to slow down for it. And where were we going anyway? The question itself leads us astray. As we admitted before, this is merely a road. But if we resign ourselves to a road without a known destination, what striving toward will keep us on this road? ... or at least allow us to cross it as many times as possible? ... for we cross the road so rarely and haphazardly that it seems inconsequential to the journey. But now I am getting ahead of myself again. Slower, slower... not faster.
What I'm looking for is a blessing that's not in disguise.
Some say the world will end in fire,
some say in ice.
From what I've tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if the world should perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate,
to say that for destruction,
ice is also great,
and would suffice.
All young monkeys are inquisitve, but the intensity of their curiosity tends to fade as they become adult. With us, the infantile inquisitiveness is strengthened and stretched out into our mature years. ...As children grow older their exploratory tendencies sometimes reach alarming proportions and adults can be heard referring to 'a group of youngsters behaving like wild animals'. But the reverse is actually the case. If the adults took the trouble to study the way in which adult wild animals really do behave, they would find that they are the wild animals. They are the ones who are trying to limit exploration and who are selling out to the cosiness of sub-human conservativism. Luckily for the species, there are always enough adults who retain their juvenile inventiveness and curiosity and who enable populations to progress and expand.
I have approximate answers and possible beliefs and different degrees of certainty about different things, but I'm not absolutely sure of anything, and many things I don't know anything about, such as whether it means anything to ask why we're here, and what the question might mean. I might think about it a little bit, but if I can't figure it out, then I go on to something else. But I don't have to know an answer. I don't have to...I don't feel frightened by not knowing things, by being lost in the mysterious universe without having any purpose, which is the way it really is, as far as I can tell, possibly. It doesn't frighten me.
When I consider the short duration of my life, swallowed up in the eternity before and after, the little space I fill, and even can see, engulfed in the infinite immensity of space of which I am ignorant, and which knows me not, I am frightened, and am astonished at being here rather than there, why now rather than then.
I was angry with my friend I told my wrath my wrath did end; I was angry with my foe I told it not my wrath did grow.
Nature has a funny way of breaking what does not bend.
Innocence Maintained, Spirit
I love this world as a dead world. And always there comes an hour when one is weary of prisons, and all one craves for is a warm face, the warmth and wonder of the living heart.
Time passes in moments. Moments which, rushing past us, define the path of a life even as they fix upon its end. How rarely do we stop to examine that path? To see the reasons why all things happen. To consider whether the path we have taken is of our own making, or simply one into which we've drifted with eyes closed. But what if we were to stop? To take stock of each precious moment before it passes? Might we see the endless forks in the roads that shape our lives? And... seeing the choices we've made... choose another path?
The X-Files, All Things
The most important things are the hardest to say, because words diminish them. It's hard to make strangers care about the good things in your life.
Do the impossible, because almost everyone has told me my ideas are merely fantasies.
The aim of life is to live -- and to live means to be aware, joyously, wondrously, drunkenly, serenely, divinely aware.
The one who follows the crowd will usually get no further than the crowd. The one who walks alone is likely to discover places no one has ever been before. Creativity in living is not without its attendant difficulties; For peculiarity breed contempt. And the unfortunate thing about being ahead of your time is that when people finally realize you were right, they'll say it was obvious all along.You have two choices in life: you can dissolve into the mainstream or you can be distinct. To be distinct, you must be different. To be different, you must strive to be what no one else but you can be .
I thought, when I came upon her, that I was seizing hold of life... Instead I lost hold of life completely. I reached out for something to attach myself to - and I found nothing. But in reaching out, in the effort to grasp, to attach myself, left high and dry as I was, I nevertheless found something I had not looked for - myself.
Tropic of Capricorn
If you could see your ancestors
All standing in a row,
Would you be proud of them or not,
Or don't you really know?
But here's another question, which
What a poor, impoverished world it would be that had no weeds to defy man's narrow idea of order or to suggest new possibilities to our too-lmited minds. Who can calculate the strength we receive when we see and identify with a dandelion growing from a crack in the sidewalk to bloom brightly amid adversity?
It makes me feel that I should be capable of just a bit more, when I see what weeds accomplish on what they receive.
In three word I can sum up everything I've learned about life. It goes on.
Live so that when your children think of fairness and integrity, they think of you.
Life's Little Instruction Book
What do I want to take home from my summer holiday? Time. The wonderful luxury of being at rest. The days when you shut down the mental machinery that keeps life on track and let life simply wander. The days when you stop planning, analysing, thinking and just are. Summer is my period of grace.
Chance is always powerful. Let your hook be always cast; in the pool where you least expect it, there will be a fish.
It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.
The Little Prince
The world is a frail pinwheel of simplistic dreams, aspirations that will never pan out. That doesn't matter, dreams and aspirations are what we get up in the morning for. The simple wish that maybe this day will be better than the last is what gets us through each day.
The moonlight - like a celestial thief, stealing the light of the sun and masquerading it as it's own.
Stray dogs have a patron saint. His name is boy.
Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind.
Sometimes the coldest days, also happen to be the clearest.
There is a big misunderstanding about the idea of naturalness. Most people who come to us believing in some freedom or naturalness, but their understanding is what we call [heretical naturalness] ... a kind of "let-alone policy" or sloppiness... For a plant or stone to be natural is no problem. But for us there is some problem, indeed a big problem. To be natural is something we must work on.
Tao Te Ching
Hatred seems to operate the same glands as love: it even produces the same actions. If we had not been taught how to interpret the story of the Passion, would we have been able to say from their actions alone whether it was the jealous Judas or the cowardly Peter who loved Christ?
The End of the Affair
Laura and Johnny walk down the halls together. Alone, everyday, as close as two people can be. Sharing laughs, good times, the've become the best of friends - so far, inseperable. The school wouldn't be the same without them if they ever were apart. The special gleam in Laura's eyes said so, but in two months, a lot will happen. In two months, Laura plans to graduate and in two months, Johnny will be born.
We cling to those truths that keep us sane. The X-Files
In the long run, the sharpest weapon of all is a kind and gentle spirit.
The world laughs in flowers.
If we hadn't our bewitching autumn foliage, we should still have to credit the weather with one feature which compensates for all its bullying vagaries -- the ice-storm: when a leafless tree is clothed with ice from the bottom to the top -- ice that is as bright and clear as crystal; when every bough and twig is strung with ice-beads, frozen dew-drops, and the whole tree sparkles cold and white like the Shah of Persia's diamond plume. Then the wind waves the branches and the sun comes out and turns all those myriads of beads and drops to prisms that glow and burn and flash with all manner of colored fires; which change and change again with inconceivable rapidity from blue to red, from red to green, and green to gold -- the tree becomes a spraying fountain, a very explosion of dazzling jewels; and it stands there the acme, the climax, the supremest possibility in art or nature, of bewildering, intoxicating, intolerable magnificence. One cannot make the words too strong!
I see rock music as the best example of modernday storytelling that exists in our society. Songs are narratives that help the listeners cope with the reality of life that can't be easily spoken about in everyday conversation. It is a hugely powerful process of helping people find themselves through music.
We can never know what to want, because, living only one life, we can neither compare it with our previous lives nor perfect it in our lives to come.
The Unbearable Lightness of Being
As if you could kill time without injuring eternity!
I had seen birth and death,
But had thought they were different.
I believe that today more than ever a book should be sought after even if it has only one great page in it: we must search for fragments, splinters, toenails, anything that has ore in it, anything that is capable of resuscitating the body and soul. It may be that we are doomed, that there is no hope for us, any of us, but if that is so then let us set up a last agonizing, bloodcurdling howl, a screech of defiance, a war whoop! Away with lamentation! Away with elegies and dirges! Away with biographies and histories, and libraries and museums! Let the dead eat the dead. Let us living ones dance about the rim of the crater, a last expiring dance. But a dance!
Tropic of Cancer