As Simple As That Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to As Simple As That. Here they are! All 100 of them:

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Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.
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Dr. Seuss
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The truth is rarely pure and never simple.
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Oscar Wilde (The Importance of Being Earnest)
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If you don't have time to read, you don't have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.
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Stephen King
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And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.
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Antoine de Saint-ExupΓ©ry (The Little Prince)
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One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple.
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Jack Kerouac (The Dharma Bums)
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I'm in love with you," he said quietly. "Augustus," I said. "I am," he said. He was staring at me, and I could see the corners of his eyes crinkling. "I'm in love with you, and I'm not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I'm in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we're all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we'll ever have, and I am in love with you.
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John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
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The simple things are also the most extraordinary things, and only the wise can see them.
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Paulo Coelho (The Alchemist)
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But luxury has never appealed to me, I like simple things, books, being alone, or with somebody who understands.
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Daphne du Maurier
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My tastes are simple: I am easily satisfied with the best.
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Winston S. Churchill
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An intellectual says a simple thing in a hard way. An artist says a hard thing in a simple way.
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Charles Bukowski
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Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful. There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby. Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon. You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.
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Bob Marley
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Goodbye," said the fox. "And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.
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Antoine de Saint-ExupΓ©ry
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To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never to forget.
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Arundhati Roy (The Cost of Living)
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Simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures. Simple in actions and thoughts, you return to the source of being. Patient with both friends and enemies, you accord with the way things are. Compassionate toward yourself, you reconcile all beings in the world.
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Lao Tzu (Tao Te Ching)
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Atheism turns out to be too simple. If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning...
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C.S. Lewis
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Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom.
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SΓΈren Kierkegaard (The Concept of Anxiety: A Simple Psychologically Orienting Deliberation on the Dogmatic Issue of Hereditary Sin)
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Everything must be made as simple as possible. But not simpler.
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Albert Einstein
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I am beginning to learn that it is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all.
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Laura Ingalls Wilder
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My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.
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Dalai Lama XIV
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Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.
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Confucius
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Like all magnificent things, it's very simple.
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Natalie Babbitt (Tuck Everlasting)
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I felt once more how simple and frugal a thing is happiness: a glass of wine, a roast chestnut, a wretched little brazier, the sound of the sea. Nothing else.
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Nikos Kazantzakis (Zorba the Greek)
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What I've come to learn is that the world is never saved in grand messianic gestures, but in the simple accumulation of gentle, soft, almost invisible acts of compassion.
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Chris Abani
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The real things haven't changed. It is still best to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasures; and have courage when things go wrong.
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Laura Ingalls Wilder
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Perhaps the rare and simple pleasure of being seen for what one is compensates for the misery of being it.
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Margaret Drabble
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Of all the hardships a person had to face, none was more punishing than the simple act of waiting.
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Khaled Hosseini (A Thousand Splendid Suns)
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If he’s not calling you, it’s because you are not on his mind. If he creates expectations for you, and then doesn’t follow through on little things, he will do same for big things. Be aware of this and realize that he’s okay with disappointing you. Don’t be with someone who doesn’t do what they say they’re going to do. If he’s choosing not to make a simple effort that would put you at ease and bring harmony to a recurring fight, then he doesn’t respect your feelings and needs. β€œBusy” is another word for β€œasshole.” β€œAsshole” is another word for the guy you’re dating. You deserve a fcking phone call.
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Greg Behrendt
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When it comes to men who are romantically interested in you, it’s really simple. Just ignore everything they say and only pay attention to what they do.
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Randy Pausch (The Last Lecture)
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She wanted something else, something different, something more. Passion and romance, perhaps, or maybe quiet conversations in candlelit rooms, or perhaps something as simple as not being second.
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Nicholas Sparks (The Notebook (The Notebook, #1))
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O, to be sure, we laugh less and play less and wear uncomfortable disguises like adults, but beneath the costume is the child we always are, whose needs are simple, whose daily life is still best described by fairy tales.
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Leo Rosten
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Friendship is a simple thing, and yet complicated; friendship is on the surface, something natural, something taken for granted, and yet underneath one could find worlds.
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Jamaica Kincaid
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Dreams are always crushing when they don't come true. But it's the simple dreams that are often the most painful because they seem so personal, so reasonable, so attainable. You're always close enough to touch, but never quite close enough to hold and it's enough to break your heart.
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Nicholas Sparks (Three Weeks With My Brother)
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But there's a story behind everything. How a picture got on a wall. How a scar got on your face. Sometimes the stories are simple, and sometimes they are hard and heartbreaking. But behind all your stories is always your mother's story, because hers is where yours begin.
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Mitch Albom (For One More Day)
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It's actually very difficult to make something both simple and good.
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Paul Simon
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Some things you know all your life. They are so simple and true they must be said without elegance, meter and rhyme...they must be naked and alone, they must stand for themselves.
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Philip Levine
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Have you ever been in love? Horrible isn't it? It makes you so vulnerable. It opens your chest and it opens up your heart and it means that someone can get inside you and mess you up. You build up all these defenses, you build up a whole suit of armor, so that nothing can hurt you, then one stupid person, no different from any other stupid person, wanders into your stupid life...You give them a piece of you. They didn't ask for it. They did something dumb one day, like kiss you or smile at you, and then your life isn't your own anymore. Love takes hostages. It gets inside you. It eats you out and leaves you crying in the darkness, so simple a phrase like 'maybe we should be just friends' turns into a glass splinter working its way into your heart. It hurts. Not just in the imagination. Not just in the mind. It's a soul-hurt, a real gets-inside-you-and-rips-you-apart pain. I hate love.
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Neil Gaiman (The Sandman, Vol. 9: The Kindly Ones)
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He liked her; it was as simple as that.
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Nicholas Sparks (The Last Song)
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The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.
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Alan W. Watts (The Culture of Counter-Culture: Edited Transcripts (Love of Wisdom))
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One is happy once one knows the necessary ingredients of happiness: simple tastes, a certain degree of courage, self denial to a point, love of work, and above all, a clear conscience.
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George Sand (Correspondance, 1812-1876, Volume 5 (French Edition))
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I don't care if you're black, white, straight, bisexual, gay, lesbian, short, tall, fat, skinny, rich or poor. If you're nice to me, I'll be nice to you. Simple as that.
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Robert Michaels
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She was struck by the simple truth that sometimes the most ordinary things could be made extraordinary, simply by doing them with the right people...
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Nicholas Sparks (The Lucky One)
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she was consumed by 3 simple things: drink, despair, loneliness; and 2 more: youth and beauty
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Charles Bukowski (The People Look Like Flowers at Last)
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If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?
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Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (The Gulag Archipelago 1918–1956 (Abridged))
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After all," Anne had said to Marilla once, "I believe the nicest and sweetest days are not those on which anything very splendid or wonderful or exciting happens but just those that bring simple little pleasures, following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string.
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L.M. Montgomery (Anne of Avonlea (Anne of Green Gables, #2))
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This is my simple religion. No need for temples. No need for complicated philosophy. Your own mind, your own heart is the temple. Your philosophy is simple kindness.
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Dalai Lama XIV
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It wasn't only wickedness and scheming that made people unhappy, it was confusion and misunderstanding; above all, it was the failure to grasp the simple truth that other people are as real as you.
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Ian McEwan (Atonement)
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Be an encourager. Scatter sunshine. Who knows whose life you might touch with something as simple as a kind word.
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Debbie Macomber
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Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong have governed my life: the longing for love, the search for knowledge, and unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind.
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Bertrand Russell
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Magic exists. Who can doubt it, when there are rainbows and wildflowers, the music of the wind and the silence of the stars? Anyone who has loved has been touched by magic. It is such a simple and such an extraordinary part of the lives we live.
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Nora Roberts
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For instance, this new idea that You-Know-Who can kill with a single glance from his eyes. That’s a basilisk, listeners. One simple test: Check whether the thing that’s glaring at you has got legs. If it has, it’s safe to look into its eyes, although if it really is You-Know-Who, that’s still likely to be the last thing you ever do.
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J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7))
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Whether he is an artist or not, the photographer is a joyous sensualist, for the simple reason that the eye traffics in feelings, not in thoughts.
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Walker Evans
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What is the meaning of life? That was all- a simple question; one that tended to close in on one with years, the great revelation had never come. The great revelation perhaps never did come. Instead, there were little daily miracles, illuminations, matches struck unexpectedly in the dark; here was one.
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Virginia Woolf (To the Lighthouse)
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I turned to Dionysus. "You cured him?" "Madness is my specialty. It was quite simple." "But...you did something nice. Why?" He raised and eyebrow. "I am nice! I simple ooze niceness, Perry Johansson. Haven't you noticed?
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Rick Riordan (The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #4))
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It is not the gentle kiss of a couple on a first date, nor is it the kiss of a man driven by simple lust. He kisses me with the desperation of a dying man who believes the magic of eternal life is in this kiss.
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Susan Ee (Angelfall (Penryn & the End of Days, #1))
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The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quite alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature. As longs as this exists, and it certainly always will, I know that then there will always be comfort for every sorrow, whatever the circumstances may be. And I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles.
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Anne Frank (The Diary of a Young Girl)
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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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Heard joke once: Man goes to doctor. Says he's depressed. Says life seems harsh and cruel. Says he feels all alone in a threatening world where what lies ahead is vague and uncertain. Doctor says, "Treatment is simple. Great clown Pagliacci is in town tonight. Go and see him. That should pick you up." Man bursts into tears. Says, "But doctor...I am Pagliacci.
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Alan Moore (Watchmen)
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It is very simple to be happy, but it is very difficult to be simple.
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Rabindranath Tagore
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i want to apologize to all the women i have called beautiful before i’ve called them intelligent or brave i am sorry i made it sound as though something as simple as what you’re born with is all you have to be proud of when you have broken mountains with your wit from now on i will say things like you are resilient, or you are extraordinary not because i don’t think you’re beautiful but because i need you to know you are more than that
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Rupi Kaur
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Life gets really simple once you cut out all the bull shit they teach you in school.
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George Carlin
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The Simple Path Silence is Prayer Prayer is Faith Faith is Love Love is Service The Fruit of Service is Peace
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Mother Teresa
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Excellent!" I cried. "Elementary," said he.
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Arthur Conan Doyle (The Complete Sherlock Holmes)
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This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.
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Dalai Lama XIV (The Dalai Lama: A Policy of Kindness: An Anthology of Writings By and About the Dalai Lama)
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There is no confusion like the confusion of a simple mind…
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F. Scott Fitzgerald (The Great Gatsby)
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Do not assume that he who seeks to comfort you now, lives untroubled among the simple and quiet words that sometimes do you good. His life may also have much sadness and difficulty, that remains far beyond yours. Were it otherwise, he would never have been able to find these words.
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Rainer Maria Rilke
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Ester asked why people are sad. "That’s simple," says the old man. "They are the prisoners of their personal history. Everyone believes that the main aim in life is to follow a plan. They never ask if that plan is theirs or if it was created by another person. They accumulate experiences, memories, things, other people's ideas, and it is more than they can possibly cope with. And that is why they forget their dreams.
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Paulo Coelho (The Zahir)
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Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta: the tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta. She was Lo, plain Lo, in the morning, standing four feet ten in one sock. She was Lola in slacks. She was Dolly at school. She was Dolores on the dotted line. But in my arms she was always Lolita. Did she have a precursor? She did, indeed she did. In point of fact, there might have been no Lolita at all had I not loved, one summer, an initial girl-child. In a princedom by the sea. Oh when? About as many years before Lolita was born as my age was that summer. You can always count on a murderer for a fancy prose style. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, exhibit number one is what the seraphs, the misinformed, simple, noble-winged seraphs, envied. Look at this tangle of thorns.
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Vladimir Nabokov (Lolita)
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Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.
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Steve Jobs
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When it's right, it's simple.
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Stephanie Perkins (Lola and the Boy Next Door (Anna and the French Kiss, #2))
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We're paying the highest tribute you can pay a man. We trust him to do right. It's that simple.
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Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)
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The greatest disease in the West today is not TB or leprosy; it is being unwanted, unloved, and uncared for. We can cure physical diseases with medicine, but the only cure for loneliness, despair, and hopelessness is love. There are many in the world who are dying for a piece of bread but there are many more dying for a little love. The poverty in the West is a different kind of poverty -- it is not only a poverty of loneliness but also of spirituality. There's a hunger for love, as there is a hunger for God.
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Mother Teresa (A Simple Path: Mother Teresa)
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Men aren't really complicated, Ana, honey. They are very simple, literal creatures. They usually mean what they say. And we spend hours trying to analyze what they've said - when really it's obvious. If I were you, I'd take him literally. That might help.
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E.L. James (Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades, #1))
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I don't know many rules to live by,' he'd said. 'But here's one. It's simple. Don't put anything unnecessary into yourself. No poisons or chemicals, no fumes or smoke or alcohol, no sharp objects, no inessential needles--drug or tattoo--and...no inessential penises either.' 'Inessential penises?' Karou had repeated, delighted with the phrase in spite of her grief. 'Is there any such thing as an essential one?' 'When an essential one comes along, you'll know,' he'd replied.
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Laini Taylor (Daughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke & Bone, #1))
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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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I go to sleep alone, and wake up alone. I take walks. I work until I'm tired. I watch the wind play with the trash that's been under the snow all winter. Everything seems simple until you think about it. Why is love intensified by abscence?
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Audrey Niffenegger (The Time Traveler's Wife)
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Ladies, let me give you some advice. You can throw all your stupid fucking chick-lit, self-help, why-doesn't-he-love-me books out, because this is all you need to know: Men will treat you the way you let them. There is no such thing as "deserving" respect; you get what you demand from people.. if you demand respect, he will either respect you or he won't associate with you. It really is that simple.
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Tucker Max (I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell (Tucker Max, #1))
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He awoke each morning with the desire to do right, to be a good and meaningful person, to be, as simple as it sounded and as impossible as it actually was, happy. And during the course of each day his heart would descend from his chest into his stomach. By early afternoon he was overcome by the feeling that nothing was right, or nothing was right for him, and by the desire to be alone. By evening he was fulfilled: alone in the magnitude of his grief, alone in his aimless guilt, alone even in his loneliness. I am not sad, he would repeat to himself over and over, I am not sad. As if he might one day convince himself. Or fool himself. Or convince others--the only thing worse than being sad is for others to know that you are sad. I am not sad. I am not sad. Because his life had unlimited potential for happiness, insofar as it was an empty white room. He would fall asleep with his heart at the foot of his bed, like some domesticated animal that was no part of him at all. And each morning he would wake with it again in the cupboard of his rib cage, having become a little heavier, a little weaker, but still pumping. And by the midafternoon he was again overcome with the desire to be somewhere else, someone else, someone else somewhere else. I am not sad.
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Jonathan Safran Foer (Everything is Illuminated)
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Just take the weapon you hold in your hand and drive it through his heart," Valentine's voice was soft. "One simple motion. Nothing you haven't done before." Jace met his father's stare with a level gaze. "I saw Agramon," he said. "It had your face." "You saw Agramon?" The Soul-Sword glittered as Valentine moved toward his son. "And you lived?" "I killed it." "You killed the Demon of Fear, but you won't kill a single vampire, not even at my order?" Jace stood watching Valentine without expression. "He's a vampire, that's true," he said. "But his name is Simon.
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Cassandra Clare (City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2))
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Dying is overrated. Human sentimentality has twisted it into the ultimate act of love. Biggest load of bullshit in the world. Dying for someone isn't the hard thing. The man that dies escapes. Plain and simple. Game over. End of pain...Try living for someone. Through it all-good, bad, thick, thin, joy, suffering. That's the hard thing.
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Karen Marie Moning (Shadowfever (Fever, #5))
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That message is simple: When you come to one of the many moments in life when you must give an account of yourself, provide a ledger of what you have been, and done, and meant to the world, do not, I pray, discount that you filled a dying man’s days with a sated joy, a joy unknown to me in all my prior years, a joy that does not hunger for more and more, but rests, satisfied. In this time, right now, that is an enormous thing.
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Paul Kalanithi (When Breath Becomes Air)
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When asked, "How do you write?" I invariably answer, "One word at a time," and the answer is invariably dismissed. But that is all it is. It sounds too simple to be true, but consider the Great Wall of China, if you will: one stone at a time, man. That's all. One stone at a time. But I've read you can see that motherfucker from space without a telescope.
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Stephen King
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Heroes didn't leap tall buildings or stop bullets with an outstretched hand; they didn't wear boots and capes. They bled, and they bruised, and their superpowers were as simple as listening, or loving. Heroes were ordinary people who knew that even if their own lives were impossibly knotted, they could untangle someone else's. And maybe that one act could lead someone to rescue you right back.
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Jodi Picoult (Second Glance)
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I'm so sorry," I whisper. I lean forward and kiss him. His eyelashes flutter and he looks at me through a haze of opiates. "Hey, Catnip." "Hey, Gale," I say. "Thought you'd be gone by now," He says. My choices are simple. I can die like a quarry in the woods or I can die here beside Gale. "I'm not going anywhere. I'm going to stay right here and cause all kinds of trouble." "Me, too," Gale says. He just manages a smile before the drugs pull him back under.
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Suzanne Collins (Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2))
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A person can learn a lot from a dog, even a loopy one like ours. Marley taught me about living each day with unbridled exuberance and joy, about seizing the moment and following your heart. He taught me to appreciate the simple things-a walk in the woods, a fresh snowfall, a nap in a shaft of winter sunlight. And as he grew old and achy, he taught me about optimism in the face of adversity. Mostly, he taught me about friendship and selflessness and, above all else, unwavering loyalty.
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John Grogan (Marley and Me: Life and Love With the World's Worst Dog)
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I'm tired of living unable to love anyone. I don't have a single friend - not one. And, worst of all, I can't even love myself. Why is that? Why can't I love myself? It's because I can't love anyone else. A person learns how to love himself through the simple acts of loving and being loved by someone else. Do you understand what I am saying? A person who is incapable of loving another cannot properly love himself.
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Haruki Murakami (1Q84 (1Q84, #1-3))
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I love that you get cold when it's 71 degrees out. I love that it takes you an hour and a half to order a sandwich. I love that you get a little crinkle above your nose when you're looking at me like I'm nuts. I love that after I spend the day with you, I can still smell your perfume on my clothes. And I love that you are the last person I want to talk to before I go to sleep at night. And it's not because I'm lonely, and it's not because it's New Year's Eve. I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.
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Nora Ephron (When Harry Met Sally)
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He turned to Frank who was trying to pull his fingers out of the Chinese handcuffs… β€œOkay,” Frank relented. β€œSure.” He frowned at his fingers, trying to pull them out of the trap. β€œUh, how do you—” Leo chuckled. β€œMan, you’ve never seen those before? There’s a simple trick to getting out.” Frank tugged again with no luck. Even Hazel was trying not to laugh. Frank grimaced with concentration. Suddenly, he disappeared. On the deck where he’d been standing, a green iguana crouched next to an empty set of Chinese handcuffs. β€œWell done, Frank Zhang,” Leo said dryly, doing his impression of Chiron the centaur. β€œThat is exactly how people beat Chinese handcuffs. They turn into iguanas.
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Rick Riordan (The Mark of Athena (The Heroes of Olympus, #3))
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One thing I do know about intimacy is that there are certain natural laws which govern the sexual experience of two people, and that these laws cannot be budged any more than gravity can be negotiated with. To feel physically comfortable with someone else's body is not a decision you can make. It has very little to do with how two people think or act or talk or even look. The mysterious magnet is either there, buried somewhere deep behind the sternum, or it is not. When it isn't there (as I have learned in the past, with heartbreaking clarity) you can no more force it to exist than a surgeon can force a patient's body to accept a kidney from the wrong donor. My friend Annie says it all comes down to one simple question: "Do you want your belly pressed against this person's belly forever --or not?
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Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love)
β€œ
Whether or not you believe in God, you must believe this: when we as a species abandon our trust in a power greater than us, we abandon our sense of accountability. Faiths… all faiths… are admonitions that there is something we cannot understand, something to which we are accountable. With faith we are accountable to each other, to ourselves, and to a higher truth. Religion is flawed, but only because man is flawed. The church consists of a brotherhood of imperfect, simple souls wanting only to be a voice of compassion in a world spinning out of control.
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Dan Brown (Angels & Demons (Robert Langdon, #1))
β€œ
Stories, like people and butterflies and songbirds' eggs and human hearts and dreams, are also fragile things, made up of nothing stronger or more lasting than twenty-six letters and a handful of punctuation marks. Or they are words on the air, composed of sounds and ideas-abstract, invisible, gone once they've been spoken-and what could be more frail than that? But some stories, small, simple ones about setting out on adventures or people doing wonders, tales of miracles and monsters, have outlasted all the people who told them, and some of them have outlasted the lands in which they were created.
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Neil Gaiman (Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders)
β€œ
I ask the impossible: love me forever. Love me when all desire is gone. Love me with the single mindedness of a monk. When the world in its entirety, and all that you hold sacred advise you against it: love me still more. When rage fills you and has no name: love me. When each step from your door to our job tires you-- love me; and from job to home again, love me, love me. Love me when you're bored-- when every woman you see is more beautiful than the last, or more pathetic, love me as you always have: not as admirer or judge, but with the compassion you save for yourself in your solitude. Love me as you relish your loneliness, the anticipation of your death, mysteries of the flesh, as it tears and mends. Love me as your most treasured childhood memory-- and if there is none to recall-- imagine one, place me there with you. Love me withered as you loved me new. Love me as if I were forever-- and I, will make the impossible a simple act, by loving you, loving you as I do
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Ana Castillo (I Ask the Impossible)
β€œ
Stories have changed, my dear boy,” the man in the grey suit says, his voice almost imperceptibly sad. β€œThere are no more battles between good and evil, no monsters to slay, no maidens in need of rescue. Most maidens are perfectly capable of rescuing themselves in my experience, at least the ones worth something, in any case. There are no longer simple tales with quests and beasts and happy endings. The quests lack clarity of goal or path. The beasts take different forms and are difficult to recognize for what they are. And there are never really endings, happy or otherwise. Things keep overlapping and blur, your story is part of your sister’s story is part of many other stories, and there in no telling where any of them may lead. Good and evil are a great deal more complex than a princess and a dragon, or a wolf and a scarlet-clad little girl. And is not the dragon the hero of his own story? Is not the wolf simply acting as a wolf should act? Though perhaps it is a singular wolf who goes to such lengths as to dress as a grandmother to toy with its prey.
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Erin Morgenstern (The Night Circus)
β€œ
I'm simply saying that there is a way to be sane. I'm saying that you can get rid of all this insanity created by the past in you. Just by being a simple witness of your thought processes. It is simply sitting silently, witnessing the thoughts, passing before you. Just witnessing, not interfering not even judging, because the moment you judge you have lost the pure witness. The moment you say β€œthis is good, this is bad,” you have already jumped onto the thought process. It takes a little time to create a gap between the witness and the mind. Once the gap is there, you are in for a great surprise, that you are not the mind, that you are the witness, a watcher. And this process of watching is the very alchemy of real religion. Because as you become more and more deeply rooted in witnessing, thoughts start disappearing. You are, but the mind is utterly empty. That’s the moment of enlightenment. That is the moment that you become for the first time an unconditioned, sane, really free human being.
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Osho
β€œ
Do you love me?' I asked her. She smiled. 'Yes.' 'Do you want me to be happy?' as I asked her this I felt my heart beginning to race. 'Of course I do.' 'Will you do something for me then?' She looked away, sadness crossing her features. 'I don't know if I can anymore.' she said. 'but if you could, would you?' I cannot adequately describe the intensity of what I was feeling at that moment. Love, anger, sadness, hope, and fear, whirling together sharpened by the nervousness I was feeling. Jamie looked at me curiously and my breaths became shallower. Suddenly I knew that I'd never felt as strongly for another person as I did at that moment. As I returned her gaze, this simple realization made me wish for the millionth time that I could make all this go away. Had it been possible, I would have traded my life for hers. I wanted to tell her my thoughts, but the sound of her voice suddenly silenced the emotions inside me. 'yes' she finally said, her voice weak yet somehow still full of promise. 'I would.' Finally getting control of myself I kissed her again, then brought my hand to her face, gently running my fingers over her cheek. I marveled at the softness of her skin, the gentleness I saw in her eyes. even now she was perfect. My throat began to tighten again, but as I said, I knew what I had to do. Since I had to accept that it was not within my power to cure her, what I wanted to do was give her something that she'd wanted. It was what my heart had been telling me to do all along. Jamie, I understood then, had already given me the answer I'd been searching for, the answer my heart needed to find. She'd told me outside Mr. Jenkins office, the night we'd asked him about doing the play. I smiled softly, and she returned my affection with a slight squeeze of my hand, as if trusting me in what I was about to do. Encouraged, I leaned closer and took a deep breath. When I exhaled, these were the words that flowed with my breath. 'Will you marry me?
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Nicholas Sparks (A Walk to Remember)
β€œ
Go into yourself. Find out the reason that commands you to write; see whether it has spread its roots into the very depths of your heart; confess to yourself whether you would have to die if you were forbidden to write. This most of all: ask yourself in the most silent hour of your night: must I write? Dig into yourself for a deep answer. And if this answer rings out in assent, if you meet this solemn question with a strong, simple β€œI must,” then build your life in accordance with this necessity; your whole life, even into its humblest and most indifferent hour, must become a sign and witness to this impulse. Then come close to Nature. Then, as if no one had ever tried before, try to say what you see and feel and love and lose... ...Describe your sorrows and desires, the thoughts that pass through your mind and your belief in some kind of beauty - describe all these with heartfelt, silent, humble sincerity and, when you express yourself, use the Things around you, the images from your dreams, and the objects that you remember. If your everyday life seems poor, don’t blame it; blame yourself; admit to yourself that you are not enough of a poet to call forth its riches; because for the creator there is not poverty and no poor, indifferent place. And even if you found yourself in some prison, whose walls let in none of the world’s sounds – wouldn’t you still have your childhood, that jewel beyond all price, that treasure house of memories? Turn your attentions to it. Try to raise up the sunken feelings of this enormous past; your personality will grow stronger, your solitude will expand and become a place where you can live in the twilight, where the noise of other people passes by, far in the distance. - And if out of this turning-within, out of this immersion in your own world, poems come, then you will not think of asking anyone whether they are good or not. Nor will you try to interest magazines in these works: for you will see them as your dear natural possession, a piece of your life, a voice from it. A work of art is good if it has arisen out of necessity. That is the only way one can judge it.
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Rainer Maria Rilke
β€œ
First of all, love is a joint experience between two persons β€” but the fact that it is a joint experience does not mean that it is a similar experience to the two people involved. There are the lover and the beloved, but these two come from different countries. Often the beloved is only a stimulus for all the stored-up love which had lain quiet within the lover for a long time hitherto. And somehow every lover knows this. He feels in his soul that his love is a solitary thing. He comes to know a new, strange loneliness and it is this knowledge which makes him suffer. So there is only one thing for the lover to do. He must house his love within himself as best he can; he must create for himself a whole new inward world β€” a world intense and strange, complete in himself. Let it be added here that this lover about whom we speak need not necessarily be a young man saving for a wedding ring β€” this lover can be man, woman, child, or indeed any human creature on this earth. Now, the beloved can also be of any description. The most outlandish people can be the stimulus for love. A man may be a doddering great-grandfather and still love only a strange girl he saw in the streets of Cheehaw one afternoon two decades past. The preacher may love a fallen woman. The beloved may be treacherous, greasy-headed, and given to evil habits. Yes, and the lover may see this as clearly as anyone else β€” but that does not affect the evolution of his love one whit. A most mediocre person can be the object of a love which is wild, extravagant, and beautiful as the poison lilies of the swamp. A good man may be the stimulus for a love both violent and debased, or a jabbering madman may bring about in the soul of someone a tender and simple idyll. Therefore, the value and quality of any love is determined solely by the lover himself. It is for this reason that most of us would rather love than be loved. Almost everyone wants to be the lover. And the curt truth is that, in a deep secret way, the state of being beloved is intolerable to many. The beloved fears and hates the lover, and with the best of reasons. For the lover is forever trying to strip bare his beloved. The lover craves any possible relation with the beloved, even if this experience can cause him only pain.
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Carson McCullers (The Ballad of the Sad CafΓ© and Other Stories)
β€œ
Man is the Reasoning Animal. Such is the claim. I think it is open to dispute. Indeed, my experiments have proven to me that he is the Unreasoning Animal... In truth, man is incurably foolish. Simple things which other animals easily learn, he is incapable of learning. Among my experiments was this. In an hour I taught a cat and a dog to be friends. I put them in a cage. In another hour I taught them to be friends with a rabbit. In the course of two days I was able to add a fox, a goose, a squirrel and some doves. Finally a monkey. They lived together in peace; even affectionately. Next, in another cage I confined an Irish Catholic from Tipperary, and as soon as he seemed tame I added a Scotch Presbyterian from Aberdeen. Next a Turk from Constantinople; a Greek Christian from Crete; an Armenian; a Methodist from the wilds of Arkansas; a Buddhist from China; a Brahman from Benares. Finally, a Salvation Army Colonel from Wapping. Then I stayed away for two whole days. When I came back to note results, the cage of Higher Animals was all right, but in the other there was but a chaos of gory odds and ends of turbans and fezzes and plaids and bones and flesh--not a specimen left alive. These Reasoning Animals had disagreed on a theological detail and carried the matter to a Higher Court.
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Mark Twain (Letters from the Earth: Uncensored Writings)
β€œ
He who becomes the slave of habit, who follows the same routes every day, who never changes pace, who does not risk and change the color of his clothes, who does not speak and does not experience, dies slowly. He or she who shuns passion, who prefers black on white, dotting ones "it’s" rather than a bundle of emotions, the kind that make your eyes glimmer, that turn a yawn into a smile, that make the heart pound in the face of mistakes and feelings, dies slowly. He or she who does not turn things topsy-turvy, who is unhappy at work, who does not risk certainty for uncertainty, to thus follow a dream, those who do not forego sound advice at least once in their lives, die slowly. He who does not travel, who does not read, who does not listen to music, who does not find grace in himself, she who does not find grace in herself, dies slowly. He who slowly destroys his own self-esteem, who does not allow himself to be helped, who spends days on end complaining about his own bad luck, about the rain that never stops, dies slowly. He or she who abandon a project before starting it, who fail to ask questions on subjects he doesn't know, he or she who don't reply when they are asked something they do know, die slowly. Let's try and avoid death in small doses, reminding oneself that being alive requires an effort far greater than the simple fact of breathing. Only a burning patience will lead to the attainment of a splendid happiness.
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Martha Medeiros
β€œ
The ones who are not soul-mated – the ones who have settled – are even more dismissive of my singleness: It’s not that hard to find someone to marry, they say. No relationship is perfect, they say – they, who make do with dutiful sex and gassy bedtime rituals, who settle for TV as conversation, who believe that husbandly capitulation – yes, honey, okay, honey – is the same as concord. He’s doing what you tell him to do because he doesn’t care enough to argue, I think. Your petty demands simply make him feel superior, or resentful, and someday he will fuck his pretty, young coworker who asks nothing of him, and you will actually be shocked. Give me a man with a little fight in him, a man who calls me on my bullshit. (But who also kind of likes my bullshit.) And yet: Don’t land me in one of those relationships where we’re always pecking at each other, disguising insults as jokes, rolling our eyes and β€˜playfully’ scrapping in front of our friends, hoping to lure them to our side of an argument they could not care less about. Those awful if only relationships: This marriage would be great if only… and you sense the if only list is a lot longer than either of them realizes. So I know I am right not to settle, but it doesn’t make me feel better as my friends pair off and I stay home on Friday night with a bottle of wine and make myself an extravagant meal and tell myself, This is perfect, as if I’m the one dating me. As I go to endless rounds of parties and bar nights, perfumed and sprayed and hopeful, rotating myself around the room like some dubious dessert. I go on dates with men who are nice and good-looking and smart – perfect-on-paper men who make me feel like I’m in a foreign land, trying to explain myself, trying to make myself known. Because isn’t that the point of every relationship: to be known by someone else, to be understood? He gets me. She gets me. Isn’t that the simple magic phrase? So you suffer through the night with the perfect-on-paper man – the stutter of jokes misunderstood, the witty remarks lobbed and missed. Or maybe he understands that you’ve made a witty remark but, unsure of what to do with it, he holds it in his hand like some bit of conversational phlegm he will wipe away later. You spend another hour trying to find each other, to recognise each other, and you drink a little too much and try a little too hard. And you go home to a cold bed and think, That was fine. And your life is a long line of fine.
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Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl)
β€œ
Certainly the most destructive vice if you like, that a person can have. More than pride, which is supposedly the number one of the cardinal sins - is self pity. Self pity is the worst possible emotion anyone can have. And the most destructive. It is, to slightly paraphrase what Wilde said about hatred, and I think actually hatred's a subset of self pity and not the other way around - ' It destroys everything around it, except itself '. Self pity will destroy relationships, it'll destroy anything that's good, it will fulfill all the prophecies it makes and leave only itself. And it's so simple to imagine that one is hard done by, and that things are unfair, and that one is underappreciated, and that if only one had had a chance at this, only one had had a chance at that, things would have gone better, you would be happier if only this, that one is unlucky. All those things. And some of them may well even be true. But, to pity oneself as a result of them is to do oneself an enormous disservice. I think it's one of things we find unattractive about the american culture, a culture which I find mostly, extremely attractive, and I like americans and I love being in america. But, just occasionally there will be some example of the absolutely ravening self pity that they are capable of, and you see it in their talk shows. It's an appalling spectacle, and it's so self destructive. I almost once wanted to publish a self help book saying 'How To Be Happy by Stephen Fry : Guaranteed success'. And people buy this huge book and it's all blank pages, and the first page would just say - ' Stop Feeling Sorry For Yourself - And you will be happy '. Use the rest of the book to write down your interesting thoughts and drawings, and that's what the book would be, and it would be true. And it sounds like 'Oh that's so simple', because it's not simple to stop feeling sorry for yourself, it's bloody hard. Because we do feel sorry for ourselves, it's what Genesis is all about.
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Stephen Fry