Alteration Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Alteration. Here they are! All 200 of them:

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Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.
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Oscar Wilde
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The bond forged between us was not one that could be broken by absence, distance, or time. And no matter how much more special or beautiful or brilliant or perfect than me he might be, he was as irreversibly altered as I was. As I would always belong to him, so would he always be mine.
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Stephenie Meyer (New Moon (Twilight, #2))
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Let me not to the marriage of true minds Admit impediments. Love is not love Which alters when it alteration finds, Or bends with the remover to remove. O no, it is an ever-fixed mark That looks on tempests and is never shaken; It is the star to every wand'ring barque, Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken. Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks Within his bending sickle's compass come; Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks, But bears it out even to the edge of doom. If this be error and upon me proved, I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
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William Shakespeare (Great Sonnets)
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Love is not love Which alters when it alteration finds, Or bends with the remover to remove. O no, it is an ever-fixed mark That looks on tempests and is never shaken; It is the star to every wand'ring bark, Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken." (Sonnet 116)
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William Shakespeare (Shakespeare's Sonnets)
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Youโ€™ll get over itโ€ฆโ€ Itโ€™s the clichรฉs that cause the trouble. To lose someone you love is to alter your life for ever. You donโ€™t get over it because โ€˜itโ€ is the person you loved. The pain stops, there are new people, but the gap never closes. How could it? The particularness of someone who mattered enough to grieve over is not made anodyne by death. This hole in my heart is in the shape of you and no-one else can fit it. Why would I want them to?
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Jeanette Winterson (Written on the Body)
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I have dreamt in my life, dreams that have stayed with me ever after, and changed my ideas; they have gone through and through me, like wine through water, and altered the color of my mind. And this is one: I'm going to tell it - but take care not to smile at any part of it.
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Emily Brontรซ (Wuthering Heights)
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There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.
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Nelson Mandela
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Let us accept truth, even when it surprises us and alters our views.
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George Sand (Letters Of George Sand)
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Memory is a snare, pure and simple; it alters, it subtly rearranges the past to fit the present.
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Mario Vargas Llosa
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Let me be that I am and seek not to alter me.
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William Shakespeare (Much Ado About Nothing)
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Whatever comes," she said, "cannot alter one thing. If I am a princess in rags and tatters, I can be a princess inside. It would be easy to be a princess if I were dressed in cloth of gold, but it is a great deal more of a triumph to be one all the time when no one knows it.
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Frances Hodgson Burnett (A Little Princess)
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This is the problem with dealing with someone who is actually a good listener. They donโ€™t jump in on your sentences, saving you from actually finishing them, or talk over you, allowing what you do manage to get out to be lost or altered in transit. Instead, they wait, so you have to keep going.
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Sarah Dessen (Just Listen)
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The man who never alters his opinion is like standing water, and breeds reptiles of the mind.
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William Blake (The Marriage of Heaven and Hell)
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Of course it hurt that we could never love each other in a physical way. We would have been far more happy if we had. But that was like the tides, the change of seasons--something immutable, an immovable destiny we could never alter. No matter how cleverly we might shelter it, our delicate friendship wasn't going to last forever. We were bound to reach a dead end. That was painfully clear.
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Haruki Murakami (Sputnik Sweetheart)
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Fourth Doctor: You know, the very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common: they don't alter their views to fit the facts; they alter the facts to fit their views.
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Chris Boucher
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I don't believe in aging. I believe in forever altering one's aspect to the sun.
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Virginia Woolf
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The greatest discovery of any generation is that a human can alter his life by altering his attitude.
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William James
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If you don't get what you want, you suffer; if you get what you don't want, you suffer; even when you get exactly what you want, you still suffer because you can't hold on to it forever. Your mind is your predicament. It wants to be free of change. Free of pain, free of the obligations of life and death. But change is law and no amount of pretending will alter that reality.
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Socrates
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Therefore, dear Sir, love your solitude and try to sing out with the pain it causes you. For those who are near you are far away... and this shows that the space around you is beginning to grow vast.... be happy about your growth, in which of course you can't take anyone with you, and be gentle with those who stay behind; be confident and calm in front of them and don't torment them with your doubts and don't frighten them with your faith or joy, which they wouldn't be able to comprehend. Seek out some simple and true feeling of what you have in common with them, which doesn't necessarily have to alter when you yourself change again and again; when you see them, love life in a form that is not your own and be indulgent toward those who are growing old, who are afraid of the aloneness that you trust.... and don't expect any understanding; but believe in a love that is being stored up for you like an inheritance, and have faith that in this love there is a strength and a blessing so large that you can travel as far as you wish without having to step outside it.
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Rainer Maria Rilke (Letters to a Young Poet)
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People disappear when they die. Their voice, their laughter, the warmth of their breath. Their flesh. Eventually their bones. All living memory of them ceases. This is both dreadful and natural. Yet for some there is an exception to this annihilation. For in the books they write they continue to exist. We can rediscover them. Their humor, their tone of voice, their moods. Through the written word they can anger you or make you happy. They can comfort you. They can perplex you. They can alter you. All this, even though they are dead. Like flies in amber, like corpses frozen in the ice, that which according to the laws of nature should pass away is, by the miracle of ink on paper, preserved. It is a kind of magic.
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Diane Setterfield (The Thirteenth Tale)
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But people themselves alter so much, that there is something new to be observed in them for ever.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I've come to believe that in everyone's life, there's one undeniable moment of change, a set of circumstances that suddenly alters everything.
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Nicholas Sparks (Safe Haven)
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Evil does not alter easily.....
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Olivia Hardy Ray (Annabel Horton, Lost Witch of Salem)
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What we call our destiny is truly our character and that character can be altered. The knowledge that we are responsible for our actions and attitudes does not need to be discouraging, because it also means that we are free to change this destiny. One is not in bondage to the past, which has shaped our feelings, to race, inheritance, background. All this can be altered if we have the courage to examine how it formed us. We can alter the chemistry provided we have the courage to dissect the elements.
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Anaรฏs Nin (The Diary of Anaรฏs Nin, Vol. 1: 1931-1934)
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Sometimes," Jem said, "our lives can change so fast that the change outpaces our minds and hearts. It's those times, I think, when our lives have altered but we still long for the time before everything was altered-- that is when we feel the greatest pain. I can tell you, though, from experience, you grow accustomed to it. You learn to live your new life, and you can't imagine, or even really remember, how things were before.
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Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1))
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God only rarely reveals the future. When he does so, it is for one reason: it's a future that was written so as to be altered.
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Paulo Coelho (The Alchemist)
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Time, which changes people, does not alter the image we have of them.
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Marcel Proust
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You write in order to change the world ... if you alter, even by a millimeter, the way people look at reality, then you can change it.
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James Baldwin
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Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.
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John Adams (The Portable John Adams)
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Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.
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George Orwell (1984)
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A book unopened alters not the ink on its pages. What is there is there.
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J.R. Ward (Lover Unbound (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #5))
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When my information changes, I alter my conclusions. What do you do, sir?
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John Maynard Keynes
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I can alter my life by altering my attitude. He who would have nothing to do with thorns must never attempt to gather flowers.
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Henry David Thoreau
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Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds.
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William Shakespeare (Love Poems and Sonnets)
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Memory's truth, because memory has its own special kind. It selects, eliminates, alters, exaggerates, minimizes, glorifies, and vilifies also; but in the end it creates its own reality, its heterogeneous but usually coherent version of events; and no sane human being ever trusts someone else's version more than his own.
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Salman Rushdie (Midnight's Children)
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A strong man cannot help a weaker unless the weaker is willing to be helped, and even then the weak man must become strong of himself; he must, by his own efforts, develop the strength which he admires in another. None but himself can alter his condition.
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James Allen (As a Man Thinketh)
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The human eye is a wonderful device. With a little effort, it can fail to see even the most glaring injustice.
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Richard K. Morgan (Altered Carbon (Takeshi Kovacs, #1))
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Though sympathy alone can't alter facts, it can help to make them more bearable.
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Bram Stoker (Dracula)
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I know you think you're a punk," Declan said. "But you aren't nearly as bad ass as you think you are." "Oh, go to hell," Ronan snapped, just as the alter boys broached the rear doors. "Guys," Matthew pleaded. "Be holy.
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Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
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Everything looks beautiful. The Book of Shhh says that deliria alters your perception, disables your ability to reason clearly, impairs you from making sound judgments. But it does not tell you this: that love will turn the whole world into something greater than itself.
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Lauren Oliver (Delirium (Delirium, #1))
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We walked to meet each other up at the time of our love and then we have been irresistibly drifting in different directions, and there's no altering that.
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Leo Tolstoy (Anna Karenina)
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Are you really going to work in that?" Maura asked. Blue looked at her clothing. It involved a few thin layering shirts, including one she had altered using a method called shredding. "What's wrong with it?" Maura shrugged. "Nothing. I always wanted an eccentric daughter. I just never realised how well my evil plans were working.
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Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
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Everything alters me, but nothing changes me.
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Salvador Dalรญ
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Life can seem awful and unfixable until the universe shifts a little and the observation point is altered, and then suddenly, everything seems more bearable.
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Jasmine Warga (My Heart and Other Black Holes)
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Love is not love which alters it when alteration finds, or bends with the remover to remove: O no! It is an ever fixed mark that looks on tempests and is never shaken; it is the star to every wandering bark whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken. Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks within his bending sickle's compass come: Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks, but bears it out, even to the edge of doom." (Sonnet 116)
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William Shakespeare (Shakespeare's Sonnets)
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even if we canโ€™t change the big picture, our choices can alter the details. Thatโ€™s how we rebel against destiny,
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Rick Riordan (The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, #1))
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One cannot alter a condition with the same mind set that created it in the first place.
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Albert Einstein
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Few individuals significantly alter the course of history. Fewer still modify the map of the world. Hardly anyone can be credited with creating a nation-state. Mohammad Ali Jinnah did all three.
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Stanley Wolpert (Jinnah of Pakistan)
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Do you believe in destiny? That even the powers of time can be altered for a single purpose? That the luckiest man who walks on this earth is the one who findsโ€ฆ true love?
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Bram Stoker (Dracula)
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In a way fighting was just like using magic. You said the words, and they altered the universe. By merely speaking you could create damage and pain, cause tears to fall, drive people away, make yourself feel better, make your life worse.
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Lev Grossman (The Magicians (The Magicians, #1))
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Small shifts in your thinking, and small changes in your energy, can lead to massive alterations of your end result.
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Kevin Michel (Moving Through Parallel Worlds To Achieve Your Dreams)
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If you obsess over whether you are making the right decision, you are basically assuming that the universe will reward you for one thing and punish you for another. The universe has no fixed agenda. Once you make any decision, it works around that decision. There is no right or wrong, only a series of possibilities that shift with each thought, feeling, and action that you experience. If this sounds too mystical, refer again to the body. Every significant vital sign- body temperature, heart rate, oxygen consumption, hormone level, brain activity, and so on- alters the moment you decide to do anythingโ€ฆ decisions are signals telling your body, mind, and environment to move in a certain direction.
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Deepak Chopra (The Book of Secrets: Unlocking the Hidden Dimensions of Your Life)
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Iโ€™ve dreamt in my life dreams that have stayed with me ever after, and changed my ideas: theyโ€™ve gone through and through me, like wine through water, and altered the colour of my mind.
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Emily Brontรซ (Wuthering Heights)
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Black and Third World people are expected to educate white people as to our humanity. Women are expected to educate men. Lesbians and gay men are expected to educate the heterosexual world. The oppressors maintain their position and evade their responsibility for their own actions. There is a constant drain of energy which might be better used in redefining ourselves and devising realistic scenarios for altering the present and constructing the future.
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Audre Lorde (Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches)
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Your voice changes when youโ€™re smiling, it alters the sound somehow.
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Gail Honeyman (Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine)
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Belief, like fear or love, is a force to be understood as we understand the theory of relativity and principals of uncertainty. Phenomena that determine the course of our lives. Yesterday, my life was headed in one direction. Today, it is headed in another. Yesterday, I believe I would never have done what I did today. These forces that often remake time and space, that can shape and alter who we imagine ourselves to be, begin long before we are born and continue after we perish. Our lives and our choices, like quantum trajectories, are understood moment to moment. That each point of intersection, each encounter, suggest a new potential direction. Proposition, I have fallen in love with Luisa Rey. Is this possible? I just met her and yet, I feel like something important has happened to me.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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You are free to choose, but you are not free to alter the consequences of your decisions.
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Ezra Taft Benson
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If they asked how I died tell them: Still angry.
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Richard K. Morgan (Altered Carbon (Takeshi Kovacs, #1))
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The man who alters his way of thinking to suit others is a fool.
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Marquis de Sade (Justine, Philosophy in the Bedroom, and Other Writings)
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Some victories are merely defeat wearing the wrong clothing
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Kiersten White (And I Darken (The Conqueror's Saga, #1))
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I vow I am, and always will be, constant and faithful in my love for you, Anais. Nothing you or anyone else does shall alter these feelings. I am forever loving, forever waiting, forever yearning...forever yours.
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Charlotte Featherstone (Addicted (Addicted #1))
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He thought each memory recalled must do some violence to its origins. As in a party game. Say the words and pass it on. So be sparing. What you alter in the remembering has yet a reality, known or not.
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Cormac McCarthy (The Road)
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People don't alter history any more than birds alter the sky, they just make brief patterns in it.
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Terry Pratchett (Mort (Discworld, #4; Death, #1))
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Men They hail you as their morning star Because you are the way you are. If you return the sentiment, They'll try to make you different; And once they have you, safe and sound, They want to change you all around. Your moods and ways they put a curse on; They'd make of you another person. They cannot let you go your gait; They influence and educate. They'd alter all that they admired. They make me sick, they make me tired.
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Dorothy Parker (The Portable Dorothy Parker)
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No passion in the world is equal to the passion to alter someone else's draft.
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H.G. Wells
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Usually time alters and affects everything, but when someone you love dies time cannot change that, no amount of time will ever change that, so time stops having any meaning.
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Rosamund Lupton (Sister)
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Love is the only freedom in the world because it so elevates the spirit that the laws of humanity and the phenomena of nature do not alter its course.
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Kahlil Gibran (Broken Wings)
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I was going to die, sooner or later, whether or not I had even spoken myself. My silences had not protected me. Your silences will not protect you.... What are the words you do not yet have? What are the tyrannies you swallow day by day and attempt to make your own, until you will sicken and die of them, still in silence? We have been socialized to respect fear more than our own need for language." I began to ask each time: "What's the worst that could happen to me if I tell this truth?" Unlike women in other countries, our breaking silence is unlikely to have us jailed, "disappeared" or run off the road at night. Our speaking out will irritate some people, get us called bitchy or hypersensitive and disrupt some dinner parties. And then our speaking out will permit other women to speak, until laws are changed and lives are saved and the world is altered forever. Next time, ask: What's the worst that will happen? Then push yourself a little further than you dare. Once you start to speak, people will yell at you. They will interrupt you, put you down and suggest it's personal. And the world won't end. And the speaking will get easier and easier. And you will find you have fallen in love with your own vision, which you may never have realized you had. And you will lose some friends and lovers, and realize you don't miss them. And new ones will find you and cherish you. And you will still flirt and paint your nails, dress up and party, because, as I think Emma Goldman said, "If I can't dance, I don't want to be part of your revolution." And at last you'll know with surpassing certainty that only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth. And that is not speaking.
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Audre Lorde
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At the core of your heart, you are perfect and pure. No one and nothing can alter that.
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Amit Ray (Meditation: Insights and Inspirations)
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The greatest discovery of any generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering the attitudes of their minds.
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Albert Schweitzer
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A complete stranger has the capacity to alter the life of another irrevocably. This domino effect has the capacity to change the course of an entire world. That is what life is; a chain reaction of individuals colliding with others and influencing their lives without realizing it. A decision that seems miniscule to you, may be monumental to the fate of the world.
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J.D. Stroube (Caged by Damnation (Caged, #2))
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He grinned. โ€œBusted. Iโ€™m a monster. Jev is my deceptively harmless โ€” and shockingly handsome โ€” alter ego.โ€ โ€œAnd Iโ€™m on top of it,โ€ she announced with witty triumph. โ€œIs that a Freudian slip?โ€ His bluntness caught her off guard. A self-conscious blush rose in her face.
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Becca Fitzpatrick (Silence (Hush, Hush, #3))
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...but I could not sleep without proper covering and spent the rest of the night rewriting lost arguments from my past, altering history so that I emerged victorious.
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Patrick deWitt (The Sisters Brothers)
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I know this sounds incredibly lame, but I don't want losing my virginity to feel like I'm losing something. I want it to feel like I'm finding something. I want sex to be amazing. I want it to be life-alteringly wonderful. And I want it to happen with someone I love.
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Sonya Sones (One of Those Hideous Books Where the Mother Dies)
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She knew the years of isolation had altered her behavior until she was different from others, but it wasn't her fault she'd been alone. Most of what she knew, she'd learned from the wild. Nature had nurtured, tutored, and protected her when no one else would.
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Delia Owens (Where the Crawdads Sing)
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some things in life only happen once, the memories of them lasting forever. they're moments that alter you, turning you into a person you never thought you'd become, but someone you were always destined to be.
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J.M. Darhower (Sempre (Sempre, #1))
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For those who feel their lives are a grave disappointment to God, it requires enormous trust and reckless, raging confidence to accept that the love of Jesus Christ knows no shadow of alteration or change. When Jesus said, "Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy burdened," He assumed we would grow weary, discouraged, and disheartened along the way. These words are a touching testimony to the genuine humanness of Jesus. He had no romantic notion of the cost of discipleship. He knew that following Him was as unsentimental as duty, as demanding as love.
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Brennan Manning (The Ragamuffin Gospel: Good News for the Bedraggled, Beat-Up, and Burnt Out)
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She was thinking about the way sheโ€™d always taken for granted that the world had certain people in it, either central to her days or unseen and infrequently thought of. How without any one of these people the world is a subtly but unmistakably altered place, the dial turned just one or two degrees.
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Emily St. John Mandel (Station Eleven)
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You're the only person I trust. That's not something to waste.
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Jennifer Rush (Altered (Altered, #1))
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The thing about fate, Magnus: even if we can't change the big picture, our choices can alter the details.That's how we rebel against destiny, how we make our mark. What will you choose to do?
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Rick Riordan (The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, #1))
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at your weakest, you end up showing more strength; at your lowest, you are suddenly lifted higher than youโ€™ve ever been. They all border one another, these opposites and show how quickly we can be altered.
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Cecelia Ahern (Thanks for the Memories)
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Haec ego non multis (scribo), sed tibi: satis enim magnum alter alteri theatrum sumus. I am writing this not to many, but to you: certainly we are a great enough audience for each other.
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Epicurus
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Hey, you created me! I didn't create some loser alter-ego to make myself feel better. Take some responsibility!
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Chuck Palahniuk (Fight Club)
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The Profumo Affair in 1963 profoundly altered British society. It gave lie to the belief that those born into the ruling class were inherently superior and destined to lead.
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Anne Michaud (Why They Stay: Sex Scandals, Deals, and Hidden Agendas of Nine Political Wives)
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I see the past as it actually was," Maeve said. She was looking at the trees. "But we overlay the present onto the past. We look back through the lens of what we know now, so we're not seeing it as the people we were, we're seeing it as the people we are, and that means the past has been radically altered.
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Ann Patchett (The Dutch House)
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And thou, Melkor, shalt see that no theme may be played that hath not its uttermost source in me, nor can any alter the music in my despite. For he that attempteth this shall prove but mine instrument in the devising of things more wonderful, which he himself hath not imagined.
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J.R.R. Tolkien (The Silmarillion)
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Whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends [life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness] it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government...
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Thomas Jefferson
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A great deal; you are good to those who are good to you. It is all I ever desire to be. If people were always kind and obedient to those who are cruel and unjust, the wicked people would have it all their own way; they would never feel afraid, and so they would never alter, but would grow worse and worse. When we are struck at without a reason, we should strike back again very hard; I am sure we should - so hard as to teach the person who struck us never to do it again.
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Charlotte Brontรซ (Jane Eyre)
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tamquam alter idem
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Maggie Stiefvater (Call Down the Hawk (Dreamer Trilogy, #1))
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Every two people cause and intersection. Every person alters the world.
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David Levithan (How They Met, and Other Stories)
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The past was alterable. The past never had been altered. Oceania was at war with Eastasia. Oceania had always been at war with Eastasia.
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George Orwell (1984)
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Bill: Superman didn't become Superman. Superman was born Superman. When Superman wakes up in the morning, he's Superman. His alter ego is Clark Kent. His outfit with the big red "S", that's the blanket he was wrapped in as a baby when the Kents found him. Those are his clothes. What Kent wears - the glasses, the business suit - that's the costume. That's the costume Superman wears to blend in with us. Clark Kent is how Superman views us. And what are the characteristics of Clark Kent. He's weak... he's unsure of himself... he's a coward. Clark Kent is Superman's critique on the whole human race.
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โ€
Quentin Tarantino (Kill Bill)
โ€œ
She seems a lot like me. A loner, a thinker, an artist with her life. And it appears as though she's afraid I'll alter her canvas if she allows me too close. She doesn't need to worry. The feeling is mutual.
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โ€
Colleen Hoover (Confess)
โ€œ
Only by acceptance of the past, can you alter it
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T.S. Eliot
โ€œ
Azriel shrugged. โ€œWeโ€”Rhys, Cass, and Iโ€”will occasionally remind each other that what we think to be our greatest weakness can sometimes be our biggest strength. And that the most unlikely person can alter the course of history.
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Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #3))
โ€œ
โ€ฆThey think of suicide as a quick route to oblivion, an escape. Far from it. It merely alters a person from one form to another. Nothing can destroy the spirit. Suicide only precipitates a darker continuation of the same conditions from which escape was sought. A condition under circumstances so much more painful.
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Richard Matheson (What Dreams May Come)
โ€œ
Hope is a waking dream.' I let the words echo in my head. The quote reminded me of that feeling you get when you start to wake from a dream you don't want to leave. That crushing sensation in the center of your chest, like you are losing an important piece of yourself you won't ever get back.
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โ€
Jennifer Rush (Altered (Altered, #1))
โ€œ
But you only get so many do-overs in this life, so many chances to, if not change your past, alter your future.
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โ€
Sarah Dessen (Just Listen)
โ€œ
A story is not like a road to follow โ€ฆ it's more like a house. You go inside and stay there for a while, wandering back and forth and settling where you like and discovering how the room and corridors relate to each other, how the world outside is altered by being viewed from these windows. And you, the visitor, the reader, are altered as well by being in this enclosed space, whether it is ample and easy or full of crooked turns, or sparsely or opulently furnished. You can go back again and again, and the house, the story, always contains more than you saw the last time. It also has a sturdy sense of itself of being built out of its own necessity, not just to shelter or beguile you.
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Alice Munro (Selected Stories)
โ€œ
By my soul I swear, there is no power in the tongue of man to alter me.
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William Shakespeare (The Merchant of Venice)
โ€œ
I believe that at the end of the century the use of words and general educated opinion will have altered so much that one will be able to speak of machines thinking without expecting to be contradicted.
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Alan Turing (Computing machinery and intelligence)
โ€œ
I stand here on the summit of the mountain. I lift my head and I spread my arms. This, my body and spirit, this is the end of the quest. I wished to know the meaning of all things. I am the meaning. I wished to find a warrant for being. I need no warrant for being, and no word of sanction upon my being. I am the warrant and the sanction. Neither am I the means to any end others may wish to accomplish. I am not a tool for their use. I am not a servant of their needs. I am not a sacrifice on their alters.
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Ayn Rand (Anthem)
โ€œ
Only within the moment of time represented by the present century has one species -- man -- acquired significant power to alter the nature of the world.
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Rachel Carson (Silent Spring)
โ€œ
Even in its first faint traces, love could alter a landscape. It wrote unimagined stories and made the most beautiful, forbidding places.
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โ€
Anna-Marie McLemore (Wild Beauty)
โ€œ
Busted. I'm a monster. Jev is my deceptively harmless-and shockingly handsome-alter ego.
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โ€
Becca Fitzpatrick (Silence (Hush, Hush, #3))
โ€œ
I smiled. โ€œYou trust me more than Cas?โ€ โ€œCas would choose a case of beer over me.โ€ My laughter echoed through the cemetery. โ€œThatโ€™s not true!โ€ I brushed the hair from my face. โ€œThe others have your back.โ€ โ€œYet you were the one who saved my life.
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โ€
Jennifer Rush (Altered (Altered, #1))
โ€œ
Literature is indispensable to the world. The world changes according to the way people see it, and if you alter, even by a millimeter, the way a person looks at reality, then you can change it.
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โ€
James Baldwin
โ€œ
Pumpkin?โ€ He nodded at the cookies. โ€œOf course.โ€ โ€œAnna Banana, I love you.
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โ€
Jennifer Rush (Altered (Altered, #1))
โ€œ
Culture is like a smog. To live within it, you must breathe some of it in and, inevitably, be contaminated.
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โ€
Richard K. Morgan (Altered Carbon (Takeshi Kovacs, #1))
โ€œ
It was wild. Abandoned. Rough. Wet. Intense. Fiery. Thorough. Exquisite. Heart-pounding. Blood-singing. Soul-rocking. Life-altering. Luscious.
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Kristen Ashley (Breathe (Colorado Mountain, #4))
โ€œ
You lost your shirt, Sam?โ€ โ€œAnna was looking over the tattoo.โ€ โ€œYeah.โ€ Nick grunted. โ€œIt looked like it.
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โ€
Jennifer Rush (Altered (Altered, #1))
โ€œ
Prolong not the past Invite not the future Do not alter your innate wakefulness Fear not appearances There in nothing more than this
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Ram Dass
โ€œ
He'd half meant to speak but those eyes had altered the world forever in the space of a heartbeat.
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Cormac McCarthy (All the Pretty Horses (The Border Trilogy, #1))
โ€œ
The supposedly immaterial soul, we now know, can be bisected with a knife, altered by chemicals, started or stopped by electricity, and extinguished by a sharp blow or by insufficient oxygen.
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โ€
Steven Pinker (How the Mind Works)
โ€œ
History cannot be erased or altered.Because that would mean killing yourself.
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โ€
Haruki Murakami (่‰ฒๅฝฉใ‚’ๆŒใŸใชใ„ๅคšๅดŽใคใใ‚‹ใจใ€ๅฝผใฎๅทก็คผใฎๅนด)
โ€œ
A revolution is coming โ€“ a revolution which will be peaceful if we are wise enough; compassionate if we care enough; successful if we are fortunate enough โ€“ but a revolution which is coming whether we will it or not. We can affect its character; we cannot alter its inevitability. [Report to the United States Senate on his trip to Latin America and the Alliance for Progress, May 9-10 1966]
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Robert F. Kennedy
โ€œ
Look," I said, "We knew Jason and Becky would be back, the break would end. This isn't a surprise, it's what's supposed to happen. It's what we wanted. Right?" "Is it?" he asked. "Is it what you want?" Whether he intended it to be or not, this was the final question, the last Truth. If I said what I really thought, I was opening myself up for a hurt bigger than I could even imagine. I didn't have it in me. We changed and altered so many rules, but it was this one, the only one when we'd started, that I would break. "Yes," I said.
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โ€
Sarah Dessen (The Truth About Forever)
โ€œ
It was a house without kindness, never meant to be lived in, not a fit place for people or for love or for hope. Exorcism cannot alter the countenance of a house ; Hill House would stay as it was until it was destroyed.
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Shirley Jackson (The Haunting of Hill House)
โ€œ
You and I are the sum of a void left by the absence of someone we love.
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Jennifer Rush (Altered (Altered, #1))
โ€œ
Perfectly Imperfect We have all heard that no two snowflakes are alike. Each snowflake takes the perfect form for the maximum efficiency and effectiveness for its journey. And while the universal force of gravity gives them a shared destination, the expansive space in the air gives each snowflake the opportunity to take their own path. They are on the same journey, but each takes a different path. Along this gravity-driven journey, some snowflakes collide and damage each other, some collide and join together, some are influenced by wind... there are so many transitions and changes that take place along the journey of the snowflake. But, no matter what the transition, the snowflake always finds itself perfectly shaped for its journey. I find parallels in nature to be a beautiful reflection of grand orchestration. One of these parallels is of snowflakes and us. We, too, are all headed in the same direction. We are being driven by a universal force to the same destination. We are all individuals taking different journeys and along our journey, we sometimes bump into each other, we cross paths, we become altered... we take different physical forms. But at all times we too are 100% perfectly imperfect. At every given moment we are absolutely perfect for what is required for our journey. Iโ€™m not perfect for your journey and youโ€™re not perfect for my journey, but Iโ€™m perfect for my journey and youโ€™re perfect for your journey. Weโ€™re heading to the same place, weโ€™re taking different routes, but weโ€™re both exactly perfect the way we are. Think of what understanding this great orchestration could mean for relationships. Imagine interacting with others knowing that they too each share this parallel with the snowflake. Like you, they are headed to the same place and no matter what they may appear like to you, they have taken the perfect form for their journey. How strong our relationships would be if we could see and respect that we are all perfectly imperfect for our journey.
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Steve Maraboli (Life, the Truth, and Being Free)
โ€œ
Some things in life only happen once, the memories of them lasting forever. They're moments that alter you, turning you into a person you never thought you'd become, but someone you were always destined to be. There's no magical rewind button in life, no take backs or do-over's to fix things you wish you could change.
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J.M. Darhower (Sempre (Sempre, #1))
โ€œ
I felt overwhelmed. I didnโ€™t expect a first kiss to be soโ€ฆlife altering. In a few brief moments, the rule book of my universe had been rewritten. Suddenly I was a brand new person. I was as fragile as a newborn, but instead of the doctor placing me in my motherโ€™s arms, heโ€™d put me in Renโ€™s. What would Ren do with me? Would he draw me near, soothe me, and teach me about this new world or would he reject me and tell the doctor there must be some mistake. There was no way to know. What a breakable and delicate thing a heart was, no wonder Iโ€™d kept mine locked away.
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Colleen Houck
โ€œ
And, after all, what is a fashion? From the artistic point of view, it is usually a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.
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Oscar Wilde (The Importance of Being Earnest)
โ€œ
Take what is offered and that must sometimes be enough.
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Richard K. Morgan (Altered Carbon (Takeshi Kovacs, #1))
โ€œ
Nice words and nice appearance doesn't conclude that someone is nice, i believe that the nicer you look, the more deceptive you appear.
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Michael Bassey Johnson
โ€œ
I look at the blanked-out faces of the other passengers--hoisting their briefcases, their backpacks, shuffling to disembark--and I think of what Hobie said: beauty alters the grain of reality. And I keep thinking too of the more conventional wisdom: namely, that the pursuit of pure beauty is a trap, a fast track to bitterness and sorrow, that beauty has to be wedded to something more meaningful. Only what is that thing? Why am I made the way I am? Why do I care about all the wrong things, and nothing at all for the right ones? Or, to tip it another way: how can I see so clearly that everything I love or care about is illusion, and yet--for me, anyway--all that's worth living for lies in that charm? A great sorrow, and one that I am only beginning to understand: we don't get to choose our own hearts. We can't make ourselves want what's good for us or what's good for other people. We don't get to choose the people we are. Because--isn't it drilled into us constantly, from childhood on, an unquestioned platitude in the culture--? From William Blake to Lady Gaga, from Rousseau to Rumi to Tosca to Mister Rogers, it's a curiously uniform message, accepted from high to low: when in doubt, what to do? How do we know what's right for us? Every shrink, every career counselor, every Disney princess knows the answer: "Be yourself." "Follow your heart." Only here's what I really, really want someone to explain to me. What if one happens to be possessed of a heart that can't be trusted--? What if the heart, for its own unfathomable reasons, leads one willfully and in a cloud of unspeakable radiance away from health, domesticity, civic responsibility and strong social connections and all the blandly-held common virtues and instead straight toward a beautiful flare of ruin, self-immolation, disaster?...If your deepest self is singing and coaxing you straight toward the bonfire, is it better to turn away? Stop your ears with wax? Ignore all the perverse glory your heart is screaming at you? Set yourself on the course that will lead you dutifully towards the norm, reasonable hours and regular medical check-ups, stable relationships and steady career advancement the New York Times and brunch on Sunday, all with the promise of being somehow a better person? Or...is it better to throw yourself head first and laughing into the holy rage calling your name?
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Donna Tartt (The Goldfinch)
โ€œ
I canโ€™t reveal the mystery to either saint or sinner; I canโ€™t state at length what Iโ€™ve said curtly; I achieve an altered state that I canโ€™t explain; I have a secret that I cannot share.
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Omar Khayyรกm (Quatrains - Ballades)
โ€œ
The world will end. The big picture cannot be changed. But in the meantime, as Loki once said, we can choose to alter the details. Thatโ€™s how we take control of our destiny.
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Rick Riordan (The Ship of the Dead (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, #3))
โ€œ
Nothing that happens on the surface of the sea can alter the calm of its depths
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โ€
Andrew Harvey (The Direct Path: Creating a Personal Journey to the Divine Using the World's Spiritual Traditions)
โ€œ
Or might the soul clone itself, create a perfect imitation of something yet to be defined? In this way, can a reflection be altered?
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Ellen Hopkins (Identical)
โ€œ
A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history.
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Mahatma Gandhi
โ€œ
In the center stood a marble alter, where a kid in a toga was doing some sort of ritual in front of a massive golden statue of the big dude himself:Jupiter the sky god, dressed in a silk XXXL purple toga, holding a lightning bolt. "It doesn't look like that," Percy muttered. "What?" Hazel asked. "The master bolt," Percy said. "What are you talking about?" "I-" Percy frowned. For a second, he'd thought he remembered something. Now it was gone. "Nothing, I guess.
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Rick Riordan (The Son of Neptune (The Heroes of Olympus, #2))
โ€œ
The past is history written in stone that can't be altered. The future is transitory and never guaranteed. Today is the only thing you can alter for certain. Make the most of it.
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Sherrilyn Kenyon (Born of Silence (The League, #5))
โ€œ
I pulled away. He stopped me with a hand on my wrist. โ€œWait,โ€ he said. โ€œI know what youโ€™re thinking.โ€ โ€œWhat?โ€ โ€œItโ€™s written all over your face.โ€ He pushed a lock of hair out of my eyes. โ€œIโ€™m not going anywhere.
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Jennifer Rush (Altered (Altered, #1))
โ€œ
What he would say, he cannot say to this woman whose openness is like a wound, whose youth is not mortal yet. He cannot alter what he loves most in her, her lack of compromise, where the romance of the poems she loves still sits with ease in the real world. Outside these qualities he knows there is no order in the world.
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Michael Ondaatje (The English Patient)
โ€œ
Every reaction is a learning process; every significant experience alters your perspective. So it would seem foolish, would it not, to adjust our lives to the demands of a goal we see from a different angle everyday? How could we ever hope to accomplish anything anther than galloping neurosis?
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Hunter S. Thompson (The Proud Highway: Saga of a Desperate Southern Gentleman, 1955-1967)
โ€œ
I threw myself against the bars, so rapidly that even Mikhail flinched. "But I love you!" I hissed. "And I know you love me too. Do you really think you can spend the rest of your life ignoring that when you're around me?" [...] "...All my feelings...my emotions for you...they changed. I don't feel the way I used to. I might be a dhampir again, but after what I went through...well, it's scarred me. It altered my soul. I can't love anyone now. I can'tโ€”I don'tโ€”love you. There's nothing more between you and me. My blood turned cold. I refused to believe his words, not after the way he'd looked at me earlier. "No! That's not true! I love you and youโ€”" "Guards!
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Richelle Mead (Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy, #5))
โ€œ
Not only are selves conditional but they die. Each day, we wake slightly altered, and the person we were yesterday is dead. So why, one could say, be afraid of death, when death comes all the time?
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John Updike (Self-Consciousness)
โ€œ
Men of Athens, I honor and love you; but I shall obey God rather than you, and while I have life and strength I shall never cease from the practice and teaching of philosophy... Understand that I shall never alter my ways, not even if I have to die many times.
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Plato (Apology of Socrates: An Interpretation with a New Translation)
โ€œ
One does not argue about The Wind in the Willows. The young man gives it to the girl with whom he is in love, and, if she does not like it, asks her to return his letters. The older man tries it on his nephew, and alters his will accordingly. The book is a test of character. We can't criticize it, because it is criticizing us. But I must give you one word of warning. When you sit down to it, don't be so ridiculous as to suppose that you are sitting in judgment on my taste, or on the art of Kenneth Grahame. You are merely sitting in judgment on yourself. You may be worthy: I don't know, But it is you who are on trial.
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A.A. Milne
โ€œ
You say that my way of thinking cannot be tolerated? What of it? The man who alters his way of thinking to suit othere is a fool. My way of thinking is the result of my reflections. It is part of my inner being,the way I am made. I do not contradict them, and would not even if I wished to. For my system, which you disapprove of is also my greatest comfort in life, the source of all my happiness -it means more to me than my life itself.
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Marquis de Sade
โ€œ
The personal, as everyoneโ€™s so fucking fond of saying, is political. So if some idiot politician, some power player, tries to execute policies that harm you or those you care about, take it personally. Get angry. The Machinery of Justice will not serve you here โ€“ it is slow and cold, and it is theirs, hardware and soft-. Only the little people suffer at the hands of Justice; the creatures of power slide from under it with a wink and a grin. If you want justice, you will have to claw it from them. Make it personal. Do as much damage as you can. Get your message across. That way, you stand a better chance of being taken seriously next time. Of being considered dangerous. And make no mistake about this: being taken seriously, being considered dangerous marks the difference - the only difference in their eyes - between players and little people. Players they will make deals with. Little people they liquidate. And time and again they cream your liquidation, your displacement, your torture and brutal execution with the ultimate insult that itโ€™s just business, itโ€™s politics, itโ€™s the way of the world, itโ€™s a tough life and that itโ€™s nothing personal. Well, fuck them. Make it personal.
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Richard K. Morgan (Altered Carbon (Takeshi Kovacs, #1))
โ€œ
Yet we met; and fate bound us together at the alter,and I never spoke of passion nor thought of love. She, however shunned society, and, attaching herself to me alone rendered me happy. It is a happiness to wonder; it is a happiness to dream.
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Edgar Allan Poe (Morella)
โ€œ
Unjust laws exist; shall we be content to obey them, or shall we endeavor to amend them, and obey them until we have succeeded, or shall we transgress them at once? Men generally, under such a government as this, think that they ought to wait until they have persuaded the majority to alter them. They think that, if they should resist, the remedy would be worse than the evil. But it is the fault of the government itself that the remedy is worse than the evil. It makes it worse. Why is it not more apt to anticipate and provide for reform? Why does it not cherish its wise minority? Why does it cry and resist before it is hurt? Why does it not encourage its citizens to be on the alert to point out its faults, and do better than it would have them?
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โ€
Henry David Thoreau (Civil Disobedience and Other Essays)
โ€œ
You write in order to change the world, knowing perfectly well that you probably can't, but also knowing that literature is indispensable to the world... The world changes according to the way people see it, and if you alter, even but a millimeter the way people look at reality, then you can change it.
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โ€
James Baldwin
โ€œ
There are some words that once spoken will split the world in two. There would be the life before you breathed them and then the altered life after they'd been said. They take a long time to find, words like that. They make you hesitate. Choose with care. Hold on to them unspoken for as long as you can just so your world will stay intact.
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โ€
Andrea Levy (Small Island)
โ€œ
The only thing worth writing about is people. People. Human beings. Men and women whose individuality must be created, line by line, insight by insight. If you do not do it, the story is a failure. [...] There is no nobler chore in the universe than holding up the mirror of reality and turning it slightly, so we have a new and different perception of the commonplace, the everyday, the 'normal', the obvious. People are reflected in the glass. The fantasy situation into which you thrust them is the mirror itself. And what we are shown should illuminate and alter our perception of the world around us. Failing that, you have failed totally.
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โ€
Harlan Ellison
โ€œ
The ORDINARY RESPONSE TO ATROCITIES is to banish them from consciousness. Certain violations of the social compact are too terrible to utter aloud: this is the meaning of the word unspeakable. Atrocities, however, refuse to be buried. Equally as powerful as the desire to deny atrocities is the conviction that denial does not work. Folk wisdom is filled with ghosts who refuse to rest in their graves until their stories are told. Murder will out. Remembering and telling the truth about terrible events are prerequisites both for the restoration of the social order and for the healing of individual victims. The conflict between the will to deny horrible events and the will to proclaim them aloud is the central dialectic of psychological trauma. People who have survived atrocities often tell their stories in a highly emotional, contradictory, and fragmented manner that undermines their credibility and thereby serves the twin imperatives of truth-telling and secrecy. When the truth is finally recognized, survivors can begin their recovery. But far too often secrecy prevails, and the story of the traumatic event surfaces not as a verbal narrative but as a symptom. The psychological distress symptoms of traumatized people simultaneously call attention to the existence of an unspeakable secret and deflect attention from it. This is most apparent in the way traumatized people alternate between feeling numb and reliving the event. The dialectic of trauma gives rise to complicated, sometimes uncanny alterations of consciousness, which George Orwell, one of the committed truth-tellers of our century, called "doublethink," and which mental health professionals, searching for calm, precise language, call "dissociation." It results in protean, dramatic, and often bizarre symptoms of hysteria which Freud recognized a century ago as disguised communications about sexual abuse in childhood. . . .
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โ€
Judith Lewis Herman (Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence - From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror)
โ€œ
On more than one occasion I have been ready to abandon my whole life for love. To alter everything that makes sense to me and to move into a different world where the only known will be the beloved. Such a sacrifice must be the result of love... or is it that the life itself was already worn out? I had finished with that life, perhaps, and could not admit it, being stubborn or afraid, or perhaps did not known it, habit being a great binder. I think it is often so that those most in need of change choose to fall in love and then throw up their hands and blame it all on fate. But it is not fate, at least, not if fate is something outside of us; it is a choice made in secret after nights of longing. ... I may be cynical when I say that very rarely is the beloved more than a shaping spirit for the lover's dreams... To be a muse may be enough. The pain is when the dreams change, as they do, as they must. Suddenly the enchanted city fades and you are left alone again in the windy desert. As for your beloved, she didn't understand you. The truth is, you never understood yourself.
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โ€
Jeanette Winterson (Sexing the Cherry)
โ€œ
Political correctness is America's newest form of intolerance, and it is especially pernicious because it comes disguised as tolerance. It presents itself as fairness, yet attempts to restrict and control people's language with strict codes and rigid rules. I'm not sure that's the way to fight discrimination. I'm not sure silencing people or forcing them to alter their speech is the best method for solving problems that go much deeper than speech.
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โ€
George Carlin (When Will Jesus Bring the Pork Chops?)
โ€œ
songs, to me, were more important than just light entertainment. They were my preceptor and guide into some altered consciousness of reality. Some different republic, some liberated republic... whatever the case, it wasn't that I was anti-popular culture or anything and I had no ambition to stir things up. I just thought of mainstream culture as lame as hell and a big trick. It was like the unbroken sea of frost that lay outside the window and you had to have awkward footgear to walk with.
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โ€
Bob Dylan (Chronicles: Volume One)
โ€œ
As he stared back, he altered...as if a shield slid away fro his eyes, revealing a scorching force of will that sucked the air from my lungs. The intense magnetism he exuded grew in strength, becoming a near tangible impression of vibrant and unrelenting power.
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โ€
Sylvia Day (Bared to You (Crossfire, #1))
โ€œ
This is the paradox of historical knowledge. Knowledge that does not change behaviour is useless. But knowledge that changes behaviour quickly loses its relevance. The more data we have and the better we understand history, the faster history alters its course, and the faster our knowledge becomes outdated.
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โ€
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
โ€œ
A human body in no way resembles those that were born for ravenousness; it hath no hawkโ€™s bill, no sharp talon, no roughness of teeth, no such strength of stomach or heat of digestion, as can be sufficient to convert or alter such heavy and fleshy fare. But if you will contend that you were born to an inclination to such food as you have now a mind to eat, do you then yourself kill what you would eat. But do it yourself, without the help of a chopping-knife, mallet or axe, as wolves, bears, and lions do, who kill and eat at once. Rend an ox with thy teeth, worry a hog with thy mouth, tear a lamb or a hare in pieces, and fall on and eat it alive as they do. But if thou had rather stay until what thou eat is to become dead, and if thou art loath to force a soul out of its body, why then dost thou against nature eat an animate thing? There is nobody that is willing to eat even a lifeless and a dead thing even as it is; so they boil it, and roast it, and alter it by fire and medicines, as it were, changing and quenching the slaughtered gore with thousands of sweet sauces, that the palate being thereby deceived may admit of such uncouth fare.
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โ€
Plutarch
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my mind is a big hunk of irrevocable nothing which touch and taste and smell and hearing and sight keep hitting and chipping with sharp fatal tools in an agony of sensual chisels i perform squirms of chrome and ex -ecute strides of cobalt nevertheless i feel that i cleverly am being altered that i slightly am becoming something a little different, in fact myself hereupon helpless i utter lilac shrieks and scarlet bellowings
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E.E. Cummings
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Baseball is the most perfect of games, solid, true, pure and precious as diamonds. If only life were so simple. Within the baselines anything can happen. Tides can reverse; oceans can open. That's why they say, "the game is never over until the last man is out." Colors can change, lives can alter, anything is possible in this gentle, flawless, loving game.
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W.P. Kinsella (Shoeless Joe)
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Life is a spread of surprises and it is both a privilege and a challenge to respond to things and events, and find the right answers to prickly questions. In this process, however, it might be wise to change first our perception and our way of looking at things, before persistently changing the very things and altering their hallmark. (โ€œLife out there โ€œ)
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Erik Pevernagie
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We plan our lives according to a dream that came to us in our childhood, and we find that life alters our plans. And yet, at the end, from a rare height, we also see that our dream was our fate. It's just that providence had other ideas as to how we would get there. Destiny plans a different route, or turns the dream around, as if it were a riddle, and fulfills the dream in ways we couldn't have expected.
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Ben Okri
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However gross a man may be, the minute he expresses a strong and genuine affection, some inner secretion alters his features, animates his gestures, and colors his voice. The stupidest man will often, under the stress of passion, achieve heights of eloquence, in thought if not in language, and seem to move in some luminous sphere. Goriot's voice and gesture had at this moment the power of communication that characterizes the great actor. Are not our finer feelings the poems of the human will?
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Honorรฉ de Balzac (Pรจre Goriot)
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The most pernicious aspect of procrastination is that it can become a habit. We don't just put off our lives today; we put them off till our deathbed. Never forget: This very moment, we can change our lives. There never was a moment, and never will be, when we are without the power to alter our destiny. This second we can turn the tables on Resistance. This second, we can sit down and do our work.
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Steven Pressfield (The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
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Most people miss their whole lives, you know. Listen, life isn't when you are standing on top of a mountain looking at a sunset. Life isn't waiting at the alter or the moment your child is born or that time you were swimming in a deep water and a dolphin came up alongside you. These are fragments. 10 or 12 grains of sand spread throughout your entire existence. These are not life. Life is brushing your teeth or making a sandwich or watching the news or waiting for the bus. Or walking. Every day, thousands of tiny events happen and if you're not watching, if you're not careful, if you don't capture them and make them COUNT, your could miss it. You could miss your whole life.
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Toni Jordan (Addition)
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We may like to know the relevance of loyalty in an ever-shifting world and comprehend the essence of "commitment" in a rapidly altering relationship. In a frame of the "easy come easy go syndromeโ€ many interpretations are brought to mind like "It was all a misunderstanding" or "I liked what the other did, but at this moment I must recognize he didn't do what I really do like". ("Was it all worthwhile?")
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Erik Pevernagie
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You have had many and great sadnesses, which passed. And you say that even this passing was hard for you and put you out of sorts. But, please, consider whether these great sadnesses have not rather gone right through the center of yourself? Whether much in you has not altered, whether you have not somewhere, at some point of your being, undergone a change when you were sad?
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Rainer Maria Rilke (Letters to a Young Poet)
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The things people say of a man do not alter a man. He is what he is. Public opinion is of no value whatsoever. Even if people employ actual violence, they are not to be violent in turn. That would be to fall to the same low level. After all, even in prison, a man can be quite free. His soul can be free. His personality can be untroubled. He can be at peace. And, above all things, they are not to interfere with other people or judge them in any way. Personality is a very mysterious thing. A man cannot always be estimated by what he does. He may keep the law, and yet be worthless. He may break the law, and yet be fine. He may be bad, without ever doing anything bad. He may commit a sin against society, and yet realize through that sin his true perfection.
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Oscar Wilde (The Soul of Man Under Socialism)
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My name is Chloe Saunders. I'm fifteen, and I would love to be normal. But normal is one thing I'm not. For one thing, I'M HAVING THESE FEELINGS FOR A CERTAIN ANTISOCIAL WEREWOLF and his sweet-tempered brotherโ€”who just happens to be a sorcererโ€”BUT,BETWEEN YOU AND ME, I'M LEANING TOWARD THE WEREWOLF. Not normal. My friends and I are also on the run from an evil corporation that wants to get rid of usโ€”permanently. Definitely not normal. And finally, I'm a genetically altered necro-mancer who can raise the dead, rotting corpses and all, without even trying. As far away from normal as it gets.
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Kelley Armstrong (The Reckoning (Darkest Powers, #3))
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Nature may reach the same result in many ways. Like a wave in the physical world, in the infinite ocean of the medium which pervades all, so in the world of organisms, in life, an impulse started proceeds onward, at times, may be, with the speed of light, at times, again, so slowly that for ages and ages it seems to stay, passing through processes of a complexity inconceivable to men, but in all its forms, in all its stages, its energy ever and ever integrally present. A single ray of light from a distant star falling upon the eye of a tyrant in bygone times may have altered the course of his life, may have changed the destiny of nations, may have transformed the surface of the globe, so intricate, so inconceivably complex are the processes in Nature. In no way can we get such an overwhelming idea of the grandeur of Nature than when we consider, that in accordance with the law of the conservation of energy, throughout the Infinite, the forces are in a perfect balance, and hence the energy of a single thought may determine the motion of a universe.
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Nikola Tesla
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How To Be An Explorer Of The World 1. Always Be LOOKING (notice the ground beneath your feet.) 2. Consider Everything Alive & Animate 3. EVERYTHING Is Interesting. Look Closer. 4. Alter Your Course Often. 5. Observe For Long Durations (and short ones). 6. Notice The Stories Going On Around You. 7. Notice PATTERNS. Make CONNECTIONS. 8. DOCUMENT Your Findings (field notes) In A VAriety Of Ways. 9. Incorporate Indeterminacy. 10. Observe Movement. 11. Create a Personal DIALOGUE With Your Environment. Talk to it. 12. Trace Things Back to Their ORIGINS. 13. Use ALL of the Senses In Your Investigations.
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Keri Smith (How to Be an Explorer of the World: Portable Life Museum)
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The axiom of equality states that x always equals x: it assumes that if you have a conceptual thing named x, that it must always be equivalent to itself, that it has a uniqueness about it, that it is in possession of something so irreducible that we must assume it is absolutely, unchangeably equivalent to itself for all time, that its very elementalness can never be altered. But it is impossible to prove. Always, absolutes, nevers: these are the words, as much as numbers, that make up the world of mathematics. Not everyone liked the axiom of equalityโ€“โ€“Dr. Li had once called it coy and twee, a fan dance of an axiomโ€“โ€“but he had always appreciated how elusive it was, how the beauty of the equation itself would always be frustrated by the attempts to prove it. It was the kind of axiom that could drive you mad, that could consume you, that could easily become an entire life. But now he knows for certain how true the axiom is, because he himselfโ€“โ€“his very lifeโ€“โ€“has proven it. The person I was will always be the person I am, he realizes. The context may have changed: he may be in this apartment, and he may have a job that he enjoys and that pays him well, and he may have parents and friends he loves. He may be respected; in court, he may even be feared. But fundamentally, he is the same person, a person who inspires disgust, a person meant to be hated.
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Hanya Yanagihara (A Little Life)
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The truth about our childhood is stored up in our body, and although we can repress it, we can never alter it. Our intellect can be deceived, our feelings manipulated, and conceptions confused, and our body tricked with medication. But someday our body will present its bill, for it is as incorruptible as a child, who, still whole in spirit, will accept no compromises or excuses, and it will not stop tormenting us until we stop evading the truth.
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Alice Miller
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Most people think things are not real unless they are spoken, that it's the uttering of something, not the thinking of it, that legitimizes it. I suppose this is why people always want other people to say "I love you." I think just the opposite - that thoughts are realest when thought, that expressing them distorts or dilutes them, that it is best for them to stay in the dark climate-controlled airport chapel of your mind, that if they're released into the air and light they will be affected in a way that alters them, like film accidentally exposed.
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Peter Cameron (Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You)
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Everything used to seem so final, inevitable, predestined. But now I'm starting to believe that life may have more surprises in store than I ever realized. Maybe it's all relative, not just light and time like Einstein theorized, but everything. Like life can seem awful and unfixable until the universe shifts a little and the observation point is altered, and then suddenly, everything seems more bearable.
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Jasmine Warga (My Heart and Other Black Holes)
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Falling in love, although it resulted in altered body chemistry and was therefore real, was a hormonally induced delusional state, according to him. In addition it was humiliating, because it put you at a disadvantage, it gave the love object too much power. As for sex per se, it lacked both challenge and novelty, and was on the whole a deeply imperfect solution to the problem of intergenerational genetic transfer.
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Margaret Atwood (Oryx and Crake (MaddAddam, #1))
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Facts, at any rate, could not be kept hidden. They could be tracked down by inquiry, they could be squeezed out of you by torture. But if the object was not to stay alive but to stay human, what difference did it ultimately make? They could not alter your feelings, for that matter you could not alter them yourself, even if you wanted to. They could lay bare in the utmost detail everything that you had done or said or thought; but the inner heart, whose workings were mysterious even to yourself, remained impregnable.
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George Orwell (1984)
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Dear God Please take away my pain and despair of yesterday and any unpleasant memories and replace them with Your glorious promise of new hope. Show me a fresh HS-inspired way of relating to negative things that have happened. I ask You for the mind of Christ so I can discern Your voice from the voice of my past. I pray that former rejection and deep hurts will not color what I see and hear now. Help me to see all the choices I have ahead of me that can alter the direction of my life. I ask You to empower me to let go of the painful events and heartaches that would keep me bound. Thank You for Your forgiveness that You have offered to me at such a great price. Pour it into my heart so I can relinquish bitterness hurts and disappointments that have no place in my life. Please set me free to forgive those who have sinned against me and caused me pain and also myself. Open my heart to receive Your complete forgiveness and amazing grace. You have promised to bind up my wounds Psa 147:3 and restore my soul Psa 23:3 . Help me to relinquish my past surrender to You my present and move to the future You have prepared for me. I ask You to come into my heart and make me who You would have me to be so that I might do Your will here on earth. I thank You Lord for all thatโ€™s happened in my past and for all I have become through those experiences. I pray You will begin to gloriously renew my present.
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Sue Augustine (When Your Past Is Hurting Your Present: Getting Beyond Fears That Hold You Back)
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I love this world," he added. "That is what rules my life. When I die, I want to have done all in my power to leave it in a better state than it was when I found it. At the same time I know that this can never be. The world has grown so complex that one voice can do little to alter it any longer. That doesn't stop me from doing what I can, but it makes the task hard. The successes are so small, the failures so large and many. It's like trying to stem a storm with one's bare hands.
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Charles de Lint (The Little Country)
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Though nihilism has been relentlessly criticized for overemphasizing the dark side of human experience, it might be equally true that this overemphasis represents a needed counterbalance to shallow optimism and arrogant confidence in human power. Nihilism reminds us that we are not gods, and that despite all of the accomplishments and wonders of civilization, humans cannot alter the fact that they possess only a finite amount of mastery and control over their own destinies.
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John Marmysz (Laughing at Nothing: Humor as a Response to Nihilism)
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He came out of nothingness, took form, was loved, was always bound to return to nothingness. Only I did not think it would be so soon. Or that he would precede us. Two passing temporarinesses developed feelings for one another. Two puffs of smoke became mutually fond. I mistook him for a solidity, and now must pay. I am not stable and Mary not stable and the very buildings and monuments here not stable and the greater city not stable and the wide world not stable. All alter, are altering, in every instant. (Are you comforted?) No. (It
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George Saunders (Lincoln in the Bardo)
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Are you always so forthright over coffee dates?โ€ โ€œI donโ€™t know. Youโ€™re the only one I ever had a crush on.โ€ Oh, boy. โ€œAnd that was stupid.โ€ Flustered again, he raked his fingers through his hair. โ€œNow Iโ€™ve scared you. That sounds scary and obsessive. Like I have an alter somewhere with your pictures over it, where I light candles and chant your name. Jesus! Thatโ€™s even scarier. Run now. I wonโ€™t hold it against you.โ€ She burst out laughing. Had to set her coffee back down before she slouched it over the rim. โ€œIโ€™ll stay if you swear you donโ€™t have the alter.โ€ โ€œI donโ€™t.โ€ He swiped his finger in an X over his heart.
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Nora Roberts (Vision in White (Bride Quartet, #1))
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Fireflies out on a warm summer's night, seeing the urgent, flashing, yellow-white phosphorescence below them, go crazy with desire; moths cast to the winds an enchantment potion that draws the opposite sex, wings beating hurriedly, from kilometers away; peacocks display a devastating corona of blue and green and the peahens are all aflutter; competing pollen grains extrude tiny tubes that race each other down the female flower's orifice to the waiting egg below; luminescent squid present rhapsodic light shows, altering the pattern, brightness and color radiated from their heads, tentacles, and eyeballs; a tapeworm diligently lays a hundred thousand fertilized eggs in a single day; a great whale rumbles through the ocean depths uttering plaintive cries that are understood hundreds of thousands of kilometers away, where another lonely behemoth is attentively listening; bacteria sidle up to one another and merge; cicadas chorus in a collective serenade of love; honeybee couples soar on matrimonial flights from which only one partner returns; male fish spray their spunk over a slimy clutch of eggs laid by God-knows-who; dogs, out cruising, sniff each other's nether parts, seeking erotic stimuli; flowers exude sultry perfumes and decorate their petals with garish ultraviolet advertisements for passing insects, birds, and bats; and men and women sing, dance, dress, adorn, paint, posture, self-mutilate, demand, coerce, dissemble, plead, succumb, and risk their lives. To say that love makes the world go around is to go too far. The Earth spins because it did so as it was formed and there has been nothing to stop it since. But the nearly maniacal devotion to sex and love by most of the plants, animals, and microbes with which we are familiar is a pervasive and striking aspect of life on Earth. It cries out for explanation. What is all this in aid of? What is the torrent of passion and obsession about? Why will organisms go without sleep, without food, gladly put themselves in mortal danger for sex? ... For more than half the history of life on Earth organisms seem to have done perfectly well without it. What good is sex?... Through 4 billion years of natural selection, instructions have been honed and fine-tuned...sequences of As, Cs, Gs, and Ts, manuals written out in the alphabet of life in competition with other similar manuals published by other firms. The organisms become the means through which the instructions flow and copy themselves, by which new instructions are tried out, on which selection operates. 'The hen,' said Samuel Butler, 'is the egg's way of making another egg.' It is on this level that we must understand what sex is for. ... The sockeye salmon exhaust themselves swimming up the mighty Columbia River to spawn, heroically hurdling cataracts, in a single-minded effort that works to propagate their DNA sequences into future generation. The moment their work is done, they fall to pieces. Scales flake off, fins drop, and soon--often within hours of spawning--they are dead and becoming distinctly aromatic. They've served their purpose. Nature is unsentimental. Death is built in.
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Carl Sagan (Shadows Of Forgotten Ancestors: A Search For Who We Are)
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Life is a valuable and unique opportunity to discover who you are. But it seems as soon as you near answering that age-old question, something unexpected always happens to alter your course. And who it is you thought you were suddenly changes. Then comes the frustrating realization that no matter how long life endures, no matter how many experiences are muddled through in this existence, you may never really be able to answer the question.... Who am I? Because the answer, like the seasons, constantly, subtly, inevitably changes. And who it is you are today, is not the same person you will be tomorrow.
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Richelle E. Goodrich (Eena, The Dawn and Rescue (The Harrowbethian Saga #1))
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He had come to that moment in his age when there occurred to him, with increasing intensity, a question of such overwhelming simplicity that he had no means to face it. He found himself wondering if his life were worth the living; if it had ever been. It was a question, he suspected, that came to all men at one time or another; he wondered if it came to them with such impersonal force as it came to him. The question brought with it a sadness, but it was a general sadness which (he thought) had little to do with himself or with his particular fate; he was not even sure that the question sprang from the most immediate and obvious causes, from what his own life had become. It came, he believed, from the accretion of his years, from the density of accident and circumstance, and from what he had come to understand of them. He took a grim and ironic pleasure from the possibility that what little learning he had managed to acquire had led him to this knowledge: that in the long run all things, even the learning that let him know this, were futile and empty, and at last diminished into a nothingness they did not alter.
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John Williams (Stoner)
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That was impressive," Ash said quietly as we walked through the maze of tents. Summer fey parted for us, scurrying out of sight as we headed deeper into camp. "Oberon was throwing all the mind-altering glamour he could at you, trying to get you to agree to his terms quickly and not question him. Not only did you resist, you turned the contract to your advantage. Not many could have done that." "Really?" I thought back to the thick, sluggish feeling in the Erlking's tent. "So that was Oberon trying to manipulate me again, huh? Maybe I could resist since I'm family. Half Oberon's blood and all that." "Or you're just incredibly stubborn," Ash added, and I smacked his arm. He chuckled, taking my hand and we continued on to the Winter's territory.
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Julie Kagawa (The Iron Queen (The Iron Fey, #3))
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Before he dies, all his experiences in these long years gather themselves in his head to one point, a ques-tion he has not yet asked the doorkeeper. He waves him nearer, since he can no longer raise his stiffening body. The doorkeeper has to bend low towards him, for the difference in height between them has altered much to the man's disadvantage. "What do you want to know now?" asks the doorkeeper; "you are insati-able." "Everyone strives to reach the Law," says the man, "so how does it happen that for all these many years no one but myself has ever begged for admit-tance?" The doorkeeper recognizes that the man has reached his end, and to let his failing senses catch the words roars in his ear: "No one else could ever be admitted here, since this gate was made only for you. I am now going to shut it.
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Franz Kafka (The Trial)
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The systematic looting of language can be recognized by the tendency of its users to forgo its nuanced, complex, mid-wifery properties for menace and subjugation. Oppressive language does more than represent violence; it is violence; does more than represent the limits of knowledge; it limits knowledge. Whether it is obscuring state language or the faux-language of mindless media; whether it is the proud but calcified language of the academy or the commodity driven language of science; whether it is the malign language of law-without-ethics, or language designed for the estrangement of minorities, hiding its racist plunder in its literary cheek - it must be rejected, altered and exposed. It is the language that drinks blood, laps vulnerabilities, tucks its fascist boots under crinolines of respectability and patriotism as it moves relentlessly toward the bottom line and the bottomed-out mind. Sexist language, racist language, theistic language - all are typical of the policing languages of mastery, and cannot, do not permit new knowledge or encourage the mutual exchange of ideas. - Toni Morrison, Nobel Lecture, 1993
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Toni Morrison (The Nobel Lecture In Literature, 1993)
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In America, everyone is entitled to an opinion, and it is certainly useful to have a few when a pollster shows up. But these are opinions of a quite different roder from eighteenth- or nineteenth-century opinions. It is probably more accurate to call them emotions rather than opinions, which would account for the fact that they change from week to week, as the pollsters tell us. What is happening here is that television is altering the meaning of 'being informed' by creating a species of information that might properly be called disinformation. I am using this world almost in the precise sense in which it is used by spies in the CIA or KGB. Disinformation does not mean false information. It means misleading information--misplace, irrelevant, fragmented or superficial information--information that creates the illusion of knowing something but which in fact leads one away from knowing. In saying this, I do not mean to imply that television news deliberately aims to deprive Americans of a coherent, contextual understanding of their world. I mean to say that when news is packaged as entertainment, that is the inevitable result. And in saying that the television news show entertains but does not inform, I am saying something far more serious than that we are being deprived of authentic information. I am saying we are losing our sense of what it means to be well informed. Ignorance is always correctable. But what shall we do if we take ignorance to be knowledge?
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Neil Postman (Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business)
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We clutter the earth with our inventions, never dreaming that possibly they are unnecessary โ€” or disadvantageous. We devise astounding means of communication, but do we communicate with one another? We move our bodies to and fro and incredible speeds, but do we really leave the spot we started from? Mentally, morally, spiritually, we are fettered. What have we achieved in mowing down mountain ranges, harnessing the energy of mighty rivers, or moving whole populations about like chess pieces, if we ourselves remain the same restless, miserable, frustrated creatures we were before? To call such activity progress is utter delusion. We may succeed in altering the face of the earth until it is unrecognizable even to the Creator, but if we are unaffected wherein lies the meaning?
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Henry Miller (The World Of Sex)
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Even if it were possible to cast my horoscope in this one life, and to make an accurate prediction about my future, it would not be possible to 'show' it to me because as soon as I saw it my future would change by definition. This is why Werner Heisenberg's adaptation of the Hays Officeโ€”the so-called principle of uncertainty whereby the act of measuring something has the effect of altering the measurementโ€”is of such importance. In my case the difference is often made by publicity. For example, and to boast of one of my few virtues, I used to derive pleasure from giving my time to bright young people who showed promise as writers and who asked for my help. Then some profile of me quoted someone who disclosed that I liked to do this. Then it became something widely said of me, whereupon it became almost impossible for me to go on doing it, because I started to receive far more requests than I could respond to, let alone satisfy. Perception modifies reality: when I abandoned the smoking habit of more than three decades I was given a supposedly helpful pill called Wellbutrin. But as soon as I discovered that this was the brand name for an antidepressant, I tossed the bottle away. There may be successful methods for overcoming the blues but for me they cannot include a capsule that says: 'Fool yourself into happiness, while pretending not to do so.' I should actually want my mind to be strong enough to circumvent such a trick.
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Christopher Hitchens (Hitch 22: A Memoir)
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Authors can be divided into meteors, planets and fixed stars. The meteors produce a loud momentary effect; we look up, shout 'see there!' and then they are gone for ever. The planets and comets last for a much longer time....The fixed stars alone are constant and unalterable; their position in the firmament is fixed; they have their own light and are at all times active, because they do not alter their appearance through a change in our standpoint, for they have no parallax. Unlike the others, they do not belong to one system (nation) alone, but to the world. But just because they are situated so high, their light usually requires many years before it becomes visible to the inhabitatns of earth.
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Arthur Schopenhauer
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One of the most amazing and perplexing features of mainstream Christianity is that seminarians who learn the historical-critical method in their Bible classes appear to forget all about it when it comes time for them to be pastors. They are taught critical approaches to Scripture, they learn about the discrepancies and contradictions, they discover all sorts of historical errors and mistakes, they come to realize that it is difficult to know whether Moses existed or what Jesus actually said and did, they find that there are other books that were at one time considered canonical but that ultimately did not become part of Scripture (for example, other Gospels and Apocalypses), they come to recognize that a good number of the books of the Bible are pseudonymous (for example, written in the name of an apostle by someone else), that in fact we don't have the original copies of any of the biblical books but only copies made centuries later, all of which have been altered. They learn all of this, and yet when they enter church ministry they appear to put it back on the shelf. For reasons I will explore in the conclusion, pastors are, as a rule, reluctant to teach what they learned about the Bible in seminary.
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Bart D. Ehrman (Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible & Why We Don't Know About Them)
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But it was a happy and beautiful bride who came down the old, homespun- carpeted stairs that September noon - the first bride of Green Gables, slender and shining-eyed, in the mist of her maiden veil, with her arms full of roses. Gilbert, waiting for her in the hall below, looked up at her with adoring eyes. She was his at last, this evasive, long-sought Anne, won after years of patient waiting. It was to him she was coming in the sweet surrender of the bride. Was he worthy of her? Could he make her as happy as he hoped? If he failed her - if he could not measure up to her standard of manhood - then, as she held out her hand, their eyes met and all doubt was swept away in a glad certainty. They belonged to each other; and, no matter what life might hold for them, it could never alter that. Their happiness was in each otherโ€™s keeping and both were unafraid.
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L.M. Montgomery (Anne's House of Dreams (Anne of Green Gables, #5))
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It occurs to me how close happiness and sadness are. So closely knitted together. Such a thin line, a thread-like divide that in the midst of emotions, it trembles, blurring the territory of exact opposites ... how quickly a moment of love was snapped away to a moment of hate ... Of how love and war stand upon the very same foundations. How, in my darkest moments, my most fearful times, when faced, became my bravest. When feeling at your weakest you end up showing more strength, when at your lowest are suddenly lifted above higher than you've ever been. They all border one another, the opposites, and how we can be altered. Despair can be altered by one simple smile offered by a stranger; confidence can become fear by the arrival of one uneasy presence. ... How similar emotions are.
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Cecelia Ahern (Thanks for the Memories)
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Why do I take a blade and slash my arms? Why do I drink myself into a stupor? Why do I swallow bottles of pills and end up in A&E having my stomach pumped? Am I seeking attention? Showing off? The pain of the cuts releases the mental pain of the memories, but the pain of healing lasts weeks. After every self-harming or overdosing incident I run the risk of being sectioned and returned to a psychiatric institution, a harrowing prospect I would not recommend to anyone. So, why do I do it? I don't. If I had power over the alters, I'd stop them. I don't have that power. When they are out, they're out. I experience blank spells and lose time, consciousness, dignity. If I, Alice Jamieson, wanted attention, I would have completed my PhD and started to climb the academic career ladder. Flaunting the label 'doctor' is more attention-grabbing that lying drained of hope in hospital with steri-strips up your arms and the vile taste of liquid charcoal absorbing the chemicals in your stomach. In most things we do, we anticipate some reward or payment. We study for status and to get better jobs; we work for money; our children are little mirrors of our social standing; the charity donation and trip to Oxfam make us feel good. Every kindness carries the potential gift of a responding kindness: you reap what you sow. There is no advantage in my harming myself; no reason for me to invent delusional memories of incest and ritual abuse. There is nothing to be gained in an A&E department.
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Alice Jamieson (Today I'm Alice: Nine Personalities, One Tortured Mind)
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The return of the voices would end in a migraine that made my whole body throb. I could do nothing except lie in a blacked-out room waiting for the voices to get infected by the pains in my head and clear off. Knowing I was different with my OCD, anorexia and the voices that no one else seemed to hear made me feel isolated, disconnected. I took everything too seriously. I analysed things to death. I turned every word, and the intonation of every word over in my mind trying to decide exactly what it meant, whether there was a subtext or an implied criticism. I tried to recall the expressions on peopleโ€™s faces, how those expressions changed, what they meant, whether what they said and the look on their faces matched and were therefore genuine or whether it was a sham, the kind word touched by irony or sarcasm, the smile that means pity. When people looked at me closely could they see the little girl in my head, being abused in those pornographic clips projected behind my eyes? That is what I would often be thinking and such thoughts ate away at the faรงade of self-confidence I was constantly raising and repairing. (describing dissociative identity disorder/mpd symptoms)
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Alice Jamieson (Today I'm Alice: Nine Personalities, One Tortured Mind)
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When God creates Eve, he calls her an ezer kenegdo. 'It is not good for the man to be alone, I shall make him [an ezer kenegdo]' (Gen. 2:18 Alter). Hebrew scholar Robert Alter, who has spent years translating the book of Genesis, says that this phrase is 'notoriously difficult to translate.' The various attempts we have in English are "helper" or "companion" or the notorious "help meet." Why are these translations so incredibly wimpy, boring, flat...disappointing? What is a help meet, anyway? What little girl dances through the house singing "One day I shall be a help meet?" Companion? A dog can be a companion. Helper? Sounds like Hamburger Helper. Alter is getting close when he translates it "sustainer beside him" The word ezer is used only twenty other places in the entire Old Testament. And in every other instance the person being described is God himself, when you need him to come through for you desperately.
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Stasi Eldredge (Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman's Soul)
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Whitepeople believed that whatever the manners, under every dark skin was a jungle. Swift unnavigable waters, swinging screaming baboons, sleeping snakes, red gums ready for their sweet white blood. In a way, he thought, they were right. The more coloredpeople spent their strength trying to convince them how gentle they were, how clever and loving, how human, the more they used themselves up to persuade whites of something Negroes believed could not be questioned, the deeper and more tangled the jungle grew inside. But it wasnโ€™t the jungle blacks brought with them to this place from the other (livable) place. It was the jungle whitefolks planted in them. And it grew. It spread. In, through and after life, it spread, until it invaded the whites who had made it. Touched them every one. Changed and altered them. Made them bloody, silly, worse than even they wanted to be, so scared were they of the jungle they had made. The screaming baboon lived under their own white skin; the red gums were their own.
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Toni Morrison (Beloved)
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Will we turn our backs on science because it is perceived as a threat to God, abandoning all the promise of advancing our understanding of nature and applying that to the alleviation of suffering and the betterment of humankind? Alternatively, will we turn our backs on faith, concluding that science has rendered the spiritual life no longer necessary, and that traditional religious symbols can now be replaced by engravings of the double helix on our alters? Both of these choices are profoundly dangerous. Both deny truth. Both will diminish the nobility of humankind. Both will be devastating to our future. And both are unnecessary. The God of the Bible is also the God of the genome. He can be worshipped in the cathedral or in the laboratory. His creation is majestic, awesome, intricate and beautiful - and it cannot be at war with itself. Only we imperfect humans can start such battles. And only we can end them.
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Francis S. Collins (The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief)
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Long Time. The famous seventeenth-century Ming painter Chou Yung relates a story that altered his behavior forever. Late one winter afternoon he set out to visit a town that lay across the river from his own town. He was bringing some important books and papers with him and had commissioned a young boy to help him carry them. As the ferry neared the other side of the river, Chou Yung asked the boatman if they would have time to get to the town before its gates closed, since it was a mile away and night was approaching. The boatman glanced at the boy, and at the bundle of loosely tied papers and booksโ€”โ€œYes,โ€ he replied, โ€œif you do not walk too fast.โ€ As they started out, however, the sun was setting. Afraid of being locked out of the town at night, prey to local bandits, Chou and the boy walked faster and faster, finally breaking into a run. Suddenly the string around the papers broke and the documents scattered on the ground. It took them many minutes to put the packet together again, and by the time they had reached the city gates, it was too late. When you force the pace out of fear and impatience, you create a nest of problems that require fixing, and you end up taking much longer than if you had taken your time.
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Robert Greene (The 48 Laws of Power)
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We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed, by their Creator, with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.
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Thomas Jefferson (The Declaration of Independence)
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It's never over. Not really. Not when you stay down there as long as I did, not when you've lived in the netherworld longer than you've lived in this material one, where things are very bright and large and make such strange noises. You never come back, not all the way. Always, there is an odd distance between you and the people you love and the people you meet, a barrier, thin as the glass of a mirror. You never come all the way out of the mirror; you stand, for the rest of your life, with one foot in this world and one in another, where everything is upside down and backward and sad. It is the distance of marred memory, of a twisted and shape-shifting past. When people talk about their childhood, their adolescence, their college days, I laugh along and try not to think: that was when I was throwing up in my elementary school bathroom, that was when I was sleeping with strangers to show off the sharp tips of my bones, that was when I lost sight of my soul and died. And it is the distance of the present, as well - the distance that lies between people in general because of the different lives we have lived. I don't know who I would be, now, if I had not lived the life I have, and so I cannot alter my need for distance - nor can I lessen the low and omnipresent pain that that distance creates. The entirety of my life is overshadowed by one singular and near-fatal obsession.
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Marya Hornbacher (Wasted: A Memoir of Anorexia and Bulimia)
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I wish I'd been accepted sooner and better. When I was younger, not being accepted made me enraged, but now, I am not inclined to dismantle my history. If you banish the dragons, you banish the heroes--and we become attached to the heroic strain in our personal history. We choose our own lives. It is not simply that we decide on the behaviors that construct our experience; when given our druthers, we elect to be ourselves. Most of us would like to be more successful or more beautiful or wealthier, and most people endure episodes of low self-esteem or even self-hatred. We despair a hundred times a day. But we retain the startling evolutionary imperative for the fact of ourselves, and with that splinter of grandiosity we redeem our flaws. These parents have, by and large, chosen to love their children, and many of them have chosen to value their own lives, even though they carry what much of the world considers an intolerable burden. Children with horizontal identities alter your self painfully; they also illuminate it. They are receptacles for rage and joy-even for salvation. When we love them, we achieve above all else the rapture of privileging what exists over what we have merely imagined. A follower of the Dalai Lama who had been imprisoned by the Chinese for decades was asked if he had ever been afraid in jail, and he said his fear was that he would lose compassion for his captors. Parents often think that they've captured something small and vulnerable, but the parents I've profiled here have been captured, locked up with their children's madness or genius or deformity, and the quest is never to lose compassion. A Buddhist scholar once explained to me that most Westerners mistakenly think that nirvana is what you arrive at when your suffering is over and only an eternity of happiness stretches ahead. But such bliss would always be shadowed by the sorrow of the past and would therefore be imperfect. Nirvana occurs when you not only look forward to rapture, but also gaze back into the times of anguish and find in them the seeds of your joy. You may not have felt that happiness at the time, but in retrospect it is incontrovertible. For some parents of children with horizontal identities, acceptance reaches its apogee when parents conclude that while they supposed that they were pinioned by a great and catastrophic loss of hope, they were in fact falling in love with someone they didn't yet know enough to want. As such parents look back, they see how every stage of loving their child has enriched them in ways they never would have conceived, ways that ar incalculably precious. Rumi said that light enters you at the bandaged place. This book's conundrum is that most of the families described here have ended up grateful for experiences they would have done anything to avoid.
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Andrew Solomon (Far from the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity)