Chaos Life Quotes

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Chaos often breeds life, when order breeds habit.
Henry Adams
A smile puts you on the right track. A smile makes the world a beautiful place. When you lose your smile, you lose your way in the chaos of life.
Roy T. Bennett (The Light in the Heart)
Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider is chaos for the fly.
Charles Addams
Life is nothing without a little chaos to make it interesting.
Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (Demon in My View (Den of Shadows, #2))
I can believe things that are true and things that aren't true and I can believe things where nobody knows if they're true or not. I can believe in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and the Beatles and Marilyn Monroe and Elvis and Mister Ed. Listen - I believe that people are perfectable, that knowledge is infinite, that the world is run by secret banking cartels and is visited by aliens on a regular basis, nice ones that look like wrinkled lemurs and bad ones who mutilate cattle and want our water and our women. I believe that the future sucks and I believe that the future rocks and I believe that one day White Buffalo Woman is going to come back and kick everyone's ass. I believe that all men are just overgrown boys with deep problems communicating and that the decline in good sex in America is coincident with the decline in drive-in movie theaters from state to state. I believe that all politicians are unprincipled crooks and I still believe that they are better than the alternative. I believe that California is going to sink into the sea when the big one comes, while Florida is going to dissolve into madness and alligators and toxic waste. I believe that antibacterial soap is destroying our resistance to dirt and disease so that one day we'll all be wiped out by the common cold like martians in War of the Worlds. I believe that the greatest poets of the last century were Edith Sitwell and Don Marquis, that jade is dried dragon sperm, and that thousands of years ago in a former life I was a one-armed Siberian shaman. I believe that mankind's destiny lies in the stars. I believe that candy really did taste better when I was a kid, that it's aerodynamically impossible for a bumble bee to fly, that light is a wave and a particle, that there's a cat in a box somewhere who's alive and dead at the same time (although if they don't ever open the box to feed it it'll eventually just be two different kinds of dead), and that there are stars in the universe billions of years older than the universe itself. I believe in a personal god who cares about me and worries and oversees everything I do. I believe in an impersonal god who set the universe in motion and went off to hang with her girlfriends and doesn't even know that I'm alive. I believe in an empty and godless universe of causal chaos, background noise, and sheer blind luck. I believe that anyone who says sex is overrated just hasn't done it properly. I believe that anyone who claims to know what's going on will lie about the little things too. I believe in absolute honesty and sensible social lies. I believe in a woman's right to choose, a baby's right to live, that while all human life is sacred there's nothing wrong with the death penalty if you can trust the legal system implicitly, and that no one but a moron would ever trust the legal system. I believe that life is a game, that life is a cruel joke, and that life is what happens when you're alive and that you might as well lie back and enjoy it.
Neil Gaiman (American Gods (American Gods, #1))
When you have something to say, silence is a lie.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Passion makes a person stop eating, sleeping, working, feeling at peace. A lot of people are frightened because, when it appears, it demolishes all the old things it finds in its path. No one wants their life thrown into chaos. That is why a lot of people keep that threat under control, and are somehow capable of sustaining a house or a structure that is already rotten. They are the engineers of the superseded. Other people think exactly the opposite: they surrender themselves without a second thought, hoping to find in passion the solutions to all their problems. They make the other person responsible for their happiness and blame them for their possible unhappiness. They are either euphoric because something marvelous has happened or depressed because something unexpected has just ruined everything. Keeping passion at bay or surrendering blindly to it - which of these two attitudes is the least destructive? I don't know.
Paulo Coelho (Eleven Minutes)
Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.
Melody Beattie
And if you think tough men are dangerous, wait until you see what weak men are capable of.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
We may be small, and we may be young, but we will shake the world for our beliefs.
Samantha Shannon (The Priory of the Orange Tree (The Roots of Chaos, #1))
When you lose your smile, you lose your way in the chaos of life.
Roy T. Bennett
You can only find out what you actually believe (rather than what you think you believe) by watching how you act. You simply don’t know what you believe, before that. You are too complex to understand yourself.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
My life before him was so simple and decided, now after him...It's just...After.
Anna Todd (After (After, #1))
Maybe it's not in the perfection of life that things make sense, but in the chaos.
Rachel Van Dyken (Ruin (Ruin, #1))
I get that you're scared and that you've been hurt. But doing what is easy and safe is no way to live, and a life without passion and love is so far beneath what you deserve.
Kiersten White (The Chaos of Stars)
It took untold generations to get you where you are. A little gratitude might be in order. If you're going to insist on bending the world to your way, you better have your reasons.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
I have an idea that the only thing which makes it possible to regard this world we live in without disgust is the beauty which now and then men create out of the chaos. The pictures they paint, the music they compose, the books they write, and the lives they lead. Of all these the richest in beauty is the beautiful life. That is the perfect work of art.
W. Somerset Maugham (The Painted Veil)
To suffer terribly and to know yourself as the cause: that is Hell.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
No tree can grow to Heaven,” adds the ever-terrifying Carl Gustav Jung, psychoanalyst extraordinaire, “unless its roots reach down to Hell.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
There is no order in the world around us, we must adapt ourselves to the requirements of chaos instead.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Breakfast of Champions)
Don't wake me for the end of the world unless it has very good special effects.
Roger Zelazny (Prince of Chaos (The Chronicles of Amber, #10))
Perhaps you are overvaluing what you don’t have and undervaluing what you do.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
I finally figured out that not every crisis can be managed. As much as we want to keep ourselves safe, we can't protect ourselves from everything. If we want to embrace life, we also have to embrace chaos.
Susan Elizabeth Phillips (Breathing Room)
To live is to fight, to preserve life is to fight everything that man stands for.
Patrick Ness (The Ask and the Answer (Chaos Walking, #2))
Wild woman are an unexplainable spark of life. They ooze freedom and seek awareness, they belong to nobody but themselves yet give a piece of who they are to everyone they meet. If you have met one, hold on to her, she'll allow you into her chaos but she'll also show you her magic.
Nikki Rowe
It’s a lack of clarity that creates chaos and frustration. Those emotions are poison to any living goal.
Steve Maraboli (Life, the Truth, and Being Free)
To stand up straight with your shoulders back is to accept the terrible responsibility of life, with eyes wide open. It means deciding to voluntarily transform the chaos of potential into the realities of habitable order. It means adopting the burden of self-conscious vulnerability, and accepting the end of the unconscious paradise of childhood, where finitude and mortality are only dimly comprehended. It means willingly undertaking the sacrifices necessary to generate a productive and meaningful reality (it means acting to please God, in the ancient language).
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Intolerance of others’ views (no matter how ignorant or incoherent they may be) is not simply wrong; in a world where there is no right or wrong, it is worse: it is a sign you are embarrassingly unsophisticated or, possibly, dangerous.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
APPLY WITHIN You once told me You wanted to find Yourself in the world - And I told you to First apply within, To discover the world within you. You once told me You wanted to save The world from all its wars - And I told you to First save yourself From the world, And all the wars You put yourself Through. APPLY WITHIN by Suzy Kassem
Suzy Kassem
Do as little harm to others as you can; make any sacrifice for your true friends; be responsible for yourself and ask nothing of others; and grab all the fun you can. Don't give much thought to yesterday, don't worry about tomorrow, live in the moment, and trust that your existence has meaning even when the world seems to be all blind chance and chaos. When life lands a hammer blow in your face, do your best to respond to the hammer as if it had been a cream pie.
Dean Koontz
RULE 4 COMPARE YOURSELF TO WHO YOU WERE YESTERDAY, NOT TO WHO SOMEONE ELSE IS TODAY
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not to who someone else is today.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Solitude is where I place my chaos to rest and awaken my inner peace.
Nikki Rowe
Life equals running and when we stop running maybe that's how we'll know life is finally finished.
Patrick Ness (The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking, #1))
I saw my earlier selves as different people, acquaintances I had outgrown. I wondered how I could ever have been some of them.
Roger Zelazny (The Courts of Chaos (The Chronicles of Amber, #5))
Ideologies are substitutes for true knowledge, and ideologues are always dangerous when they come to power, because a simple-minded I-know-it-all approach is no match for the complexity of existence.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
My dear, In the midst of hate, I found there was, within me, an invincible love. In the midst of tears, I found there was, within me, an invincible smile. In the midst of chaos, I found there was, within me, an invincible calm. I realized, through it all, that… In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back. Truly yours, Albert Camus” I like this because only one part is usually quoted but the full quote has such symmetry.
Albert Camus
I have never seen battles quite as terrifyingly beautiful as the ones I fight when my mind splinters and races, to swallow me into my own madness, again.
Nicole Lyons (Hush)
Stop blaming outside circumstances for your inside chaos.
Steve Maraboli (Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience)
The overman...Who has organized the chaos of his passions, given style to his character, and become creative. Aware of life's terrors, he affirms life without resentment.
Friedrich Nietzsche
How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one, is what we are doing. A schedule defends from chaos and whim. It is a net for catching days. It is a scaffolding on which a worker can stand and labor with both hands at sections of time. A schedule is a mock-up of reason and order—willed, faked, and so brought into being; it is a peace and a haven set into the wreck of time; it is a lifeboat on which you find yourself, decades later, still living.
Annie Dillard (The Writing Life)
Nietzsche said that a man’s worth was determined by how much truth he could tolerate
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
He'd been back for about two weeks, and everything in Laurel's life had been thrown into Chaos. Sexy, sexy chaos.
Aprilynne Pike (Illusions (Wings, #3))
I wonder if being sane means disregarding the chaos that is life, pretending only an infinitesimal segment of it is reality.
Rabih Alameddine (Koolaids: The Art of War)
Always place your becoming above your current being.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
The successful among us delay gratification. The successful among us bargain with the future.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Life ain't fair. It ain't. Not never.
Patrick Ness (The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking, #1))
So, attend carefully to your posture. Quit drooping and hunching around. Speak your mind. Put your desires forward, as if you had a right to them—at least the same right as others. Walk tall and gaze forthrightly ahead. Dare to be dangerous. Encourage the serotonin to flow plentifully through the neural pathways desperate for its calming influence.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
People organize their brains with conversation. If they don't have anyone to tell their story to, they lose their minds. Like hoarders, they cannot unclutter themselves.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
There seems to be a kind of order in the universe…in the movement of the stars and the turning of the Earth and the changing of the seasons. But human life is almost pure chaos. Everyone takes his stance, asserts his own right and feelings, mistaking the motives of others, and his own.
Katherine Anne Porter
Stop saying those things that make you weak and ashamed. Say only those things that make you strong. Do only those things that you could speak of with honour.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
In the West, we have been withdrawing from our tradition-, religion- and even nation-centred cultures, partly to decrease the danger of group conflict. But we are increasingly falling prey to the desperation of meaninglessness, and that is no improvement at all.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
The better ambitions have to do with the development of character and ability, rather than status and power. Status you can lose. You carry character with you wherever you go, and it allows you to prevail against adversity.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Ideas that require people to reorganize their picture of the world provoke hostility.
James Gleick (Chaos: Making a New Science)
You must determine where you are going in your life, because you cannot get there unless you move in that direction. Random wandering will not move you forward. It will instead disappoint and frustrate you and make you anxious and unhappy and hard to get along with (and then resentful, and then vengeful, and then worse).
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
So we forgive each other?" The crooked smile climbs up one more time. "Again?" And I look right into his eyes, right into him as far as I can see, because I want him to hear me, I want him to hear me with everything I mean and feel and say. "Always," I say to him. "Every time.
Patrick Ness (The Ask and the Answer (Chaos Walking, #2))
It is my firm belief that the best way to fix the world—a handyman’s dream, if ever there was one—is to fix yourself,
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Every bit of learning is a little death. Every bit of new information challenges a previous conception, forcing it to dissolve into chaos before it can be reborn as something better. Sometimes such deaths virtually destroy us.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
So, listen, to yourself and to those with whom you are speaking. Your wisdom then consists not of the knowledge you already have, but the continual search for knowledge, which is the highest form of wisdom.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
I have never, not once, not in my life, made love to any woman. Not once. Not until what I just did with you.
Kristen Ashley (Own the Wind (Chaos, #1))
Or maybe Jason's right: there are perfect people, many of them, and it's up to you to grab one when you find each other in the random chaos of life and love.
Lauren Morrill (Meant to Be)
Thermodynamic miracles... events with odds against so astronomical they're effectively impossible, like oxygen spontaneously becoming gold. I long to observe such a thing. And yet, in each human coupling, a thousand million sperm vie for a single egg. Multiply those odds by countless generations, against the odds of your ancestors being alive; meeting; siring this precise son; that exact daughter... Until your mother loves a man she has every reason to hate, and of that union, of the thousand million children competing for fertilization, it was you, only you, that emerged. To distill so specific a form from that chaos of improbability, like turning air to gold... that is the crowning unlikelihood. The thermodynamic miracle. But...if me, my birth, if that's a thermodynamic miracle... I mean, you could say that about anybody in the world!. Yes. Anybody in the world. ..But the world is so full of people, so crowded with these miracles that they become commonplace and we forget... I forget. We gaze continually at the world and it grows dull in our perceptions. Yet seen from the another's vantage point. As if new, it may still take our breath away. Come...dry your eyes. For you are life, rarer than a quark and unpredictable beyond the dreams of Heisenberg; the clay in which the forces that shape all things leave their fingerprints most clearly. Dry your eyes... and let's go home.
Alan Moore (Watchmen)
Don’t underestimate the power of vision and direction. These are irresistible forces, able to transform what might appear to be unconquerable obstacles into traversable pathways and expanding opportunities. Strengthen the individual. Start with yourself. Take care with yourself. Define who you are. Refine your personality. Choose your destination and articulate your Being. As the great nineteenth-century German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche so brilliantly noted, “He whose life has a why can bear almost any how.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
I wear the universe backwards. I imagine putting stars in my coffee, and sugar in the sky. I imagine going fishing in clouds, and watching the sun hide behind lakes. I'm too busy dancing with my imagination to even tip toe with reality for a second. They say I'm going mad. They're right.
D. Antoinette Foy
Chaos is more freedom; in fact, total freedom. But no meaning.
Audrey Niffenegger (The Time Traveler's Wife)
For a moment everything was clear, and when that happens you see that the world is barely there at all. Don't we all secretly know this? It's a perfectly balanced mechanism of shouts and echoes pretending to be wheels and cogs, a dreamclock chiming beneath a mystery-glass we call life. Behind it? Below it and around it? Chaos, storms. Men with hammers, men with knives, men with guns. Women who twist what they cannot dominate and belittle what they cannot understand. A universe of horror and loss surrounding a single lighted stage where mortals dance in defiance of the dark.
Stephen King (11/22/63)
What you aim at determines what you see.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Only a mind free of impediment is capable of grasping the chaotic beauty of the world. This is our greatest asset.
Oliver Bowden (Assassin's Creed: The Secret Crusade (Assassin's Creed, #3))
Love is the bee that carries the pollen from one heart to another.
Slash Coleman (Bohemian Love Diaries: A Memoir)
Worry is a prayer to chaos
Gabrielle Bernstein (Add More ~ing to Your Life: A Hip Guide to Happiness)
Because children grow up, we think a child's purpose is to grow up. But a child's purpose is to be a child. Nature doesn't disdain what lives only for a day. It pours the whole of itself into the each moment. We don't value the lily less for not being made of flint and built to last. Life's bounty is in its flow, later is too late. Where is the song when it's been sung? The dance when it's been danced? It's only we humans who want to own the future, too. We persuade ourselves that the universe is modestly employed in unfolding our destination. We note the haphazard chaos of history by the day, by the hour, but there is something wrong with the picture. Where is the unity, the meaning, of nature's highest creation? Surely those millions of little streams of accident and wilfulness have their correction in the vast underground river which, without a doubt, is carrying us to the place where we're expected! But there is no such place, that's why it's called utopia. The death of a child has no more meaning than the death of armies, of nations. Was the child happy while he lived? That is a proper question, the only question. If we can't arrange our own happiness, it's a conceit beyond vulgarity to arrange the happiness of those who come after us.
Tom Stoppard (The Coast of Utopia (Box Set))
A schedule defends from chaos and whim. A net for catching days.
Annie Dillard (The Writing Life)
Babe?” Hop called. “As of now, I’m not talking to you,” I announced with a mouth full of donut. “Love you more than life.
Kristen Ashley (Fire Inside (Chaos, #2))
Life is chaos. Time is order.
V.E. Schwab (A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic, #3))
Don’t ever underestimate the destructive power of sins of omission.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Chaos and intensity are no substitute for lasting love, nor are they necessarily an improvement on real life.
Kay Redfield Jamison (An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness)
We are Adam and Eve born out of chaos called creation Ribbing me gave you life yet you forget there will always be a part of me in you yes I taunted and tempted you with my forbidden fruit does that make me the serpent too? Believe what you will but if I am exiled alone I know we will be together again someday naked without shame in paradise My thanks to you for being in on my sin
Megan McCafferty (Sloppy Firsts (Jessica Darling, #1))
Everything you see is in the process of making or unmaking or dying or living. Everything is in a state of change.
Kelly Barnhill (The Girl Who Drank the Moon)
Let us fear the torment of emotions that might sway in its wake chaos through the sound construction of reason and discernment. Let us cherish instead emotional intelligence along the intricate and tortuous paths of life’s labyrinth. ("No handkerchief, when you need it")
Erik Pevernagie
We require routine and tradition. That’s order. Order can become excessive, and that’s not good, but chaos can swamp us, so we drown— and that is also not good. We need to stay on the straight and narrow path.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
To read great books does not mean one becomes ‘bookish’; it means that something of the terrible insight of Dostoyevsky, of the richly-charged imagination of Shakespeare, of the luminous wisdom of Goethe, actually passes into the personality of the reader; so that in contact with the chaos of ordinary life certain free and flowing outlines emerge, like the forms of some classic picture, endowing both people and things with a grandeur beyond what is visible to the superficial glance.
John Cowper Powys
if you cannot understand why someone did something, look at the consequences—and infer the motivation.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
If you betray yourself, if you say untrue things, if you act out a lie, you weaken your character.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Do you know I've been sitting here thinking to myself: that if I didn't believe in life, if I lost faith in the woman I love, lost faith in the order of things, were convinced in fact that everything is a disorderly, damnable, and perhaps devil-ridden chaos, if I were struck by every horror of man's disillusionment -- still I should want to live. Having once tasted of the cup, I would not turn away from it till I had drained it! At thirty though, I shall be sure to leave the cup even if I've not emptied it, and turn away -- where I don't know. But till I am thirty I know that my youth will triumph over everything -- every disillusionment, every disgust with life. I've asked myself many times whether there is in the world any despair that could overcome this frantic thirst for life. And I've come to the conclusion that there isn't, that is until I am thirty.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Brothers Karamazov)
Life is divine chaos.
Jillian Dodd (Stalk Me (The Keatyn Chronicles, #1))
Worthlessness is the default condition.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Humanity today is like a waking dreamer, caught between the fantasies of sleep and the chaos of the real world. The mind seeks but cannot find the precise place and hour. We have created a Star Wars civilization, with Stone Age emotions, medieval institutions, and godlike technology. We thrash about. We are terribly confused by the mere fact of our existence, and a danger to ourselves and to the rest of life.
Edward O. Wilson (The Social Conquest of Earth)
If the reality of our life has become an unsettling arabesque puzzle and we still want to add more filigree embroidery to it, we might, some day, expect to stray from the point of recognition, lose the final thread, be expelled to the edge of delusion and forced to dance on the brim of chaos. ("Alert. High noon." )
Erik Pevernagie
We are the inheritors of a wonderful world, a beautiful world, full of life and mystery, goodness and pain. But likewise are we the children of an indifferent universe. We break our own hearts imposing our moral order on what is, by nature, a wide web of chaos.
Colin Meloy (Wildwood (Wildwood Chronicles, #1))
Viola? Keep calling for me– And I’ll keep searching for you– And I’ll find you– You bet yer life on it– I’ll find you– Keep calling for me, Viola– Cuz here I come.
Patrick Ness (Monsters of Men (Chaos Walking, #3))
When we free ourselves from the chaos enclosed in the surrounding rigid social structure, we can find peace of mind and still our hunger for knowledge and understanding. If we follow the rhythm of our heartbeat, we can quench our thirst for meaning in life and encounter an array of soothing vibrations of wellbeing. (“A handful of dust”)
Erik Pevernagie
Sometimes it seems the only people willing to give advice in a relativistic society are those with the least to offer.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Dreams shed light on the dim places where reason itself has yet to voyage.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
If your life is not what it could be, try telling the truth. If you cling desperately to an ideology, or wallow in nihilism, try telling the truth. If you feel weak and rejected, and desperate, and confused, try telling the truth. In Paradise, everyone speaks the truth. That is what makes it Paradise. Tell the truth. Or, at least, don’t lie.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Why does everyone think a guy who prefers love to people is missing something in his life?
Slash Coleman (Bohemian Love Diaries: A Memoir)
If a child has not been taught to behave properly by the age of four, it will forever be difficult for him or her to make friends.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
That's the thing I'm learning about being thrown out on yer own. Nobody does nothing for you. If you don't change it, it don't get changed.
Patrick Ness (The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking, #1))
Life is divine Chaos. It's messy, and it's supposed to be that way.
John Keats
And you must be cautious, because making your life better means adopting a lot of responsibility, and that takes more effort and care than living stupidly in pain and remaining arrogant, deceitful and resentful.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
If the world wants you, it's gonna keep on coming till it gets you. And who am I that can fix it? Who am I that can change this if the world wants it so badly? Who am I to stop the end of the world if it keeps on coming?
Patrick Ness (The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking, #1))
I tried to give you what you needed, to stay away, let you live your fucked-up life, but I can’t. Taste you in my mouth, lady. See you in my dreams.
Kristen Ashley (Fire Inside (Chaos, #2))
It’s appropriate and praiseworthy to associate with people whose lives would be improved if they saw your life improve.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
So, even in the midst of craziness and exhaustion and life-changing chaos, I was filled with peace and the sweet knowledge that I was walking the path my Goddess wanted me on. Not that that path was smooth and pothole free. But still, it was my path, and like me, it was bound to be unique.
P.C. Cast (Untamed (House of Night, #4))
It is far better to render Beings in your care competent than to protect them.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Mark Twain once said, “It’s not what we don’t know that gets us in trouble. It’s what we know for sure that just ain’t so.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Look at that chessboard we put back in place,’ said Mrs Elm softly. ‘Look at how ordered and safe and peaceful it looks now, before a game starts. It’s a beautiful thing. But it is boring. It is dead. And yet the moment you make a move on that board, things change. Things begin to get more chaotic. And that chaos builds with every single move you make.’ ‘It’s an easy game to play,’ she told Nora. ‘But a hard one to master. Every move you make opens a whole new world of possibilities...In chess, as in life, possibility is the basis of everything. Every hope, every dream, every regret, every moment of living...never underestimate the big importance of small things.
Matt Haig (The Midnight Library)
After tail spinning into chaos, one needs a bolt-hole, to resource and ‘challenge’ oneself, break free from the haunting constrictions, squirrel back into bouncy and buoyant surroundings and enjoy the many laugh-out-loud-moments of the day. As soon as one manages to wobble out of one’s shell, everything may click into place again and the radiance and glare of the bright side of life might show again. ("Imbroglio")
Erik Pevernagie
Without poets, without artists... everything would fall apart into chaos. There would be no more seasons, no more civilizations, no more thought, no more humanity, no more life even; and impotent darkness would reign forever. Poets and artists together determine the features of their age, and the future meekly conforms to their edit.
Guillaume Apollinaire (Selected Writings)
The teacher pulled out a pile of papers. They were Bennie’s tests and homework assignments. Mrs. Lewis said, “Ma’am, here is the proof that Bennie isn’t up to a fourth grade level. He has an F on several of these assignments. In fact, a zero grade is too high for some of Bennie’s work this last year.
Harold Phifer (Surviving Chaos: How I Found Peace at A Beach Bar)
There’s some real utility in gratitude. It’s also good protection against the dangers of victimhood and resentment.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Question for parents: do you want to make your children safe, or strong?
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
The lonely reality of the truth-that the most important person in your life suddenly ceased to exist. Which on a bad day meant maybe she had never existed at all. And on a good day, there was the other fear. That even if you were a hundred percent sure she had been there, maybe you were the only one who cared or remembered.
Kami Garcia (Beautiful Chaos (Caster Chronicles, #3))
Out of nowhere, one of the twins grabbed my cap while the other delivered a blow to my head. She slapped the taste right out of my mouth. I couldn’t even feel my tongue. I spun around to face my bullies. The twins had become triplets. I couldn’t remember ever trying to drink three glasses of anything and this wouldn’t be the day to try.
Harold Phifer (Surviving Chaos: How I Found Peace at A Beach Bar)
That one day, you will forgive yourself. You are in the spring of your life, child, and have much to learn about this world. Do not deny yourself the privilege of living.
Samantha Shannon (The Priory of the Orange Tree (The Roots of Chaos, #1))
I didn't want the life that made sense. Not if the chaos meant i could have Bella.
Stephenie Meyer (Midnight Sun [2008 Draft])
Out of the cacophony of random suffering and chaos that can mark human life, the life artist sees or creates a symphony of meaning and order. A life of wholeness does not depend on what we experience. Wholeness depends on how we experience our lives.
Desmond Tutu
But there was a special kind of gift that came with embracing the chaos, even if I cursed most of the way. I'm convinced that, when everything is wiped blank, it's life 's way of forcing you to become acquainted with and aware of who you are now, who you can become. What is the fulfillment of your soul?
Jennifer DeLucy
Can you imagine what that’s like – to be seen only for the life you could make, not the life you already possess?
Samantha Shannon (A Day of Fallen Night (The Roots of Chaos, #0))
Everybody's a mad scientist, and life is their lab. We're all trying to experiment to find a way to live, to solve problems, to fend off madness and chaos.
David Cronenberg
She loved him. But he didn’t know how to love. He could talk about love. He could see love and feel love. But he couldn’t give love. He could make love. But he couldn’t make promises. She had desperately wanted his promises. She wanted his heart, knew she couldn’t have it so she took what she could get. Temporary bliss. Passionate highs and lows. Withdrawal and manipulation. He only stayed long enough to take what he needed and keep moving. If he stopped moving, he would self-destruct. If he stopped wandering, he would have to face himself. He chose to stay in the dark where he couldn’t see. If he exposed himself and the sun came out, he’d see his shadow. He was deathly afraid of his shadow. She saw his shadow, loved it, understood it. Saw potential in it. She thought her love would change him. He pushed and he pulled, tested boundaries, thinking she would never leave. He knew he was hurting her, but didn’t know how to share anything but pain. He was only comfortable in chaos. Claiming souls before they could claim him. Her love, her body, she had given to him and he’d taken with such feigned sincerity, absorbing every drop of her. His dark heart concealed. She’d let him enter her spirit and stroke her soul where everything is love and sensation and surrender. Wide open, exposed to deception. It had never occurred to her that this desire was not love. It was blinding the way she wanted him. She couldn’t see what was really happening, only what she wanted to happen. She suspected that he would always seek to minimize the risk of being split open, his secrets revealed. He valued his soul’s privacy far more than he valued the intimacy of sincere connection so he kept his distance at any and all costs. Intimacy would lead to his undoing—in his mind, an irrational and indulgent mistake. When she discovered his indiscretions, she threw love in his face and beat him with it. Somewhere deep down, in her labyrinth, her intricacy, the darkest part of her soul, she relished the mayhem. She felt a sense of privilege for having such passion in her life. He stirred her core. The place she dared not enter. The place she could not stir for herself. But something wasn’t right. His eyes were cold and dark. His energy, unaffected. He laughed at her and her antics, told her she was a mess. Frantic, she looked for love hiding in his eyes, in his face, in his stance, and she found nothing but disdain. And her heart stopped.
G.G. Renee Hill (The Beautiful Disruption)
If you remember that something bad happened, and you can figure out why, then you can try to avoid that bad thing happening again. That’s the purpose of memory. It’s not “to remember the past.” It’s to stop the same damn thing from happening over and over.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Why do you pretend what we do is nothing?” she asked. “Every day, all the chaos and messiness of life happens and every day we clean it all up. Without us, they would just wallow in filth and disorder and nothing of any consequence would ever get done. Who taught you to sneer at that? I’ll tell you who. Someone who took their mother for granted.
Grady Hendrix (The Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying Vampires)
I knew Dad was concerned about my past associations. I was from the Trash Alley. It was my community. I hung out with thugs from the Frog Bottom, the Burns Bottoms, the Red Line, the S-Curve, the Sandfield, the Morning Side, and a bunch of other places that shall remain nameless. I knew all of the “Legends of the Hood”: Sin Man, Swap, Boo Boo, Emp-Man, Cookie Man, Shank, Polar Bear, Bae Willy, Bae Bruh, Skullhead Ned, Pimp, Crunch, and Goat Turd (just to name a few). I thought maybe Dad had summoned me as a “show and tell” for the kids in his neighborhood—the hardliner to scare those wayward suburban brats back into reality.
Harold Phifer (Surviving Chaos: How I Found Peace at A Beach Bar)
I'm beginning to think that to hope isn't the same as to expect something. To hope is to believe that life is an acceptable chaos.
Goenawan Mohamad (Pagi dan Hal-Hal yang Dipungut Kembali)
The life of a person is more than the chaos of its passing. Emotion, Ruin. This is your defeat.
Brandon Sanderson (The Hero of Ages (Mistborn, #3))
I am convinced that the deepest desire within each of us is to be liberated from the controlling influences of our own psychic madness or patterns of fear. All other things—the disdain of ordinary life, the need to control others rather than be controlled, the craving for material goods as a means of security and protection against the winds of chaos—are external props that serve as substitutes for the real battle, which is the one waged within the individual soul.
Caroline Myss
Art is not escape, but a way of finding order in chaos, a way of confronting life.
Robert Hayden
Beauty shames the ugly. Strength shames the weak. Death shames the living - and the Ideal shames us all.
Jordan B. Peterson (Jordan B. Peterson: 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
you should never sacrifice what you could be for what you are.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
As I approached my fiftieth birthday, I had become more and more enraged and mystified by the idiot decisions made by my countrymen. And then I had come suddenly to pity them, for I understood how innocent and natural it was for them to behave so abominably, and with such abominable results: They were doing their best to live like people invented in story books. This was the reason Americans shot each other so often: It was a convenient literary device for ending short stories and books. Why were so many Americans treated by their government as though their lives were as disposable as paper facial tis-sues? Because that was the way authors customarily treated bit-part players in their made-up tales. And so on.Once I understood what was making America such a dangerous, unhappy nation of people who had nothing to do with real life, I resolved to shun storytelling. I would write about life. Every person would be exactly as important as any other. All facts would also be given equal weightiness. Nothing would be left out. Let others bring order to chaos. I would bring chaos to order, instead, which I think I have done. If all writers would do that, then perhaps citizens not in the literary trades will understand that there is no order in the world around us, that we must adapt ourselves to the requirements of chaos instead. It is hard to adapt to chaos, but it can be done. I am living proof of that: It can be done.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Breakfast of Champions)
Dare to change the world There is nothing quixotic or romantic in wanting to change the world. It is possible. It is the age-old vocation of all humanity. I can't think of a better life than one dedicated to passion, to dreams, to the stubborness that defies chaos and disillusionment.
Gioconda Belli (The Country Under My Skin: A Memoir of Love and War)
No one escapes from a war. No one. Not even the survivors. You accept things that would appall you at any other time because life has temporarily lost all meaning.
Patrick Ness (The Ask and the Answer (Chaos Walking, #2))
As long as I hold it as long as I use it, the knife lives, lives in order to take life, but it has to be commanded, it has to have me to tell it to kill, and it wants to, it wants to plunge and thrust and cut and stab and gouge, but I have to want it to as well, my will has to join with its will. I'm the one who allows it and I'm the one responsible.
Patrick Ness (The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking, #1))
you should not overlook the guidelines of your culture. Life is short, and you don’t have time to figure everything out on your own. The wisdom of the past was hard-earned, and your dead ancestors may have something useful to tell you).
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
When I give up the fish, I get, at long last, that thing I had been searching for: a mantra, a trick, a prescription for hope. I get the promise that there are good things in store. Not because I deserve them. Not because I worked for them. But because they are as much a part of Chaos as destruction and loss. Life, the flip side of death. Growth, of rot.
Lulu Miller (Why Fish Don't Exist: A Story of Loss, Love, and the Hidden Order of Life)
You are by no means only what you already know. You are also all that which you could know, if you only would. Thus, you should never sacrifice what you could be for what you are. You should never give up the better that resides within for the security you already have—and certainly not when you have already caught a glimpse, an undeniable glimpse, of something beyond.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Did what I want happen? No. Then my aim or my methods were wrong. I still have something to learn.” That is the voice of authenticity. “Did what I want happen? No. Then the world is unfair. People are jealous, and too stupid to understand. It is the fault of something or someone else.” That is the voice of inauthenticity.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Our intention is to affirm this life, not to bring order out of chaos, nor to suggest improvements in creation, but simply to wake up to the very life we're living, which is so excellent once one gets one's mind and desires out of its way and lets it act of it's own accord.
John Cage
Our world is not safe. It is a toxic swamp populated by predators and parasites. The odds are stacked against us from the moment of conception. We survive only because we fight the elements, hunger, disease, each other. And, although civilization promises us safe harbor, that promise is a fairy tale. Only the storm is real. It comes for each of us. And we cannot win. We can only choose how we will suffer our defeat. We can meekly take our beatings, and die like lemmings, finding solace in the belief that we shall one day inherit the earth. Or, we can plunge into the chaos with eyes wide open, taking comfort instead from the bruises, scars, and broken bones which prove that we fought to live and die as gods.
J.K. Franko (Life for Life (Talion #3))
Scccccratccch the most clever postmodern-relativist professor’s Mercedes with a key, and you will see how fast the mask of relativism (with its pretense that there can be neither right nor wrong) and the cloak of radical tolerance come off.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
There was just such a man when I was young—an Austrian who invented a new way of life and convinced himself that he was the chap to make it work. He tried to impose his reformation by the sword, and plunged the civilized world into misery and chaos. But the thing which this fellow had overlooked, my friend, was that he had a predecessor in the reformation business, called Jesus Christ. Perhaps we may assume that Jesus knew as much as the Austrian did about saving people. But the odd thing is that Jesus did not turn the disciples into storm troopers, burn down the Temple at Jerusalem, and fix the blame on Pontius Pilate. On the contrary, he made it clear that the business of the philosopher was to make ideas available, and not to impose them on people.
T.H. White (The Once and Future King (The Once and Future King, #1-4))
The world tends toward chaos, you know," Cassidy said. You could too. Just write down a made up name, or even a fictional character. And the next person who finds this geocache, it's as though things really hapened that way. You have to at least allow for the possibility of it.
Robyn Schneider (The Beginning of Everything)
Part of her revolted against the insanity of the rules. Part of her was grateful. In a world of chaos, any guidelines helped. And she knew that each day she remained alive, she remained alive. One plus one plus one. The Devil's arithmetic...
Jane Yolen
I dared, for the first and last time in my life, to express a theological conclusion: "But how can a necessary being exist totally polluted with the possible? What difference is there, then, between God and primogenial chaos? Isn't affirming God's absolute omnipotence and His absolute freedom with regard to His own choices tantamount to demonstrating that God does not exist?
Umberto Eco (The Name of the Rose)
The fragmentation of our awareness may trigger dizzying vertigo in the chaos of our living. As such, an overwhelming flurry of connectivity and images generate thereby an oversaturation in our brain and the overabundance makes us anxious, fractured and insecure. This might, in turn, actuate us to cut the wire with the world and stumble into an estranging and contentious cocoon of self-absorption, while off-loading the lush supply of social interaction. Life becomes, then, an intricate maneuvering ground for walking a fine line between sound connectedness and crumbling consciousness, between unflinching cohesion and atomizing fragmentation. ("Give me more images")
Erik Pevernagie
Order is not enough. You can’t just be stable, and secure, and unchanging, because there are still vital and important new things to be learned. Nonetheless, chaos can be too much. You can’t long tolerate being swamped and overwhelmed beyond your capacity to cope while you are learning what you still need to know. Thus, you need to place one foot in what you have mastered and understood and the other in what you are currently exploring and mastering. Then you have positioned yourself where the terror of existence is under control and you are secure, but where you are also alert and engaged. That is where there is something new to master and some way that you can be improved. That is where meaning is to be found.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
We deserve some respect. You deserve some respect. You are important to other people, as much as to yourself. You have some vital role to play in the unfolding destiny of the world. You are, therefore, morally obliged to take care of yourself. You should take care of, help and be good to yourself the same way you would take care of, help and be good to someone you loved and valued. You may therefore have to conduct yourself habitually in a manner that allows you some respect for your own Being—and fair enough. But every person is deeply flawed. Everyone falls short of the glory of God. If that stark fact meant, however, that we had no responsibility to care, for ourselves as much as others, everyone would be brutally punished all the time. That would not be good. That would make the shortcomings of the world, which can make everyone who thinks honestly question the very propriety of the world, worse in every way. That simply cannot be the proper path forward.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Study yourself. Become your own mentor and best friend. When you are suffering stay at the bottom until you find out who you are. Let the storms come and pass. How you walk through the fire says a lot about you. Nobody likes a victimhood mentality and what happened to you is not important. It is about how you use your chaos that matters. The dawn will come
Mohadesa Najumi
We must each adopt as much responsibility as possible for individual life, society and the world. We must each tell the truth and repair what is in disrepair and break down and recreate what is old and outdated. It is in this manner that we can and must reduce the suffering that poisons the world. It’s asking a lot. It’s asking for everything.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
She lives her life like a flame; a dance of purposeful chaos.… Her enchanting light can guide you and quell your fears… She’s hot; warming those who respect her and burning those who don’t... She is a flame with an unforgettable glow… A weak man will try to dim her luminance... but her soul mate will take pleasure in fanning the blaze.
Steve Maraboli
Sometimes, when people have a low opinion of their own worth—or, perhaps, when they refuse responsibility for their lives—they choose a new acquaintance, of precisely the type who proved troublesome in the past. Such people don’t believe that they deserve any better—so they don’t go looking for it. Or, perhaps, they don’t want the trouble of better. Freud called this a “repetition compulsion.” He thought of it as an unconscious drive to repeat the horrors of the past—sometimes, perhaps, to formulate those horrors more precisely, sometimes to attempt more active mastery and sometimes, perhaps, because no alternatives beckon. People create their worlds with the tools they have directly at hand. Faulty tools produce faulty results. Repeated use of the same faulty tools produces the same faulty results. It is in this manner that those who fail to learn from the past doom themselves to repeat it. It’s partly fate. It’s partly inability. It’s partly … unwillingness to learn? Refusal to learn? Motivated refusal to learn?
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Dispassionately, reasonably, he contemplated the failure that his life must appear to be. He had wanted friendship and the closeness of friendship that might hold him in the race of mankind; he had had two friends, one of whom had died senselessly before he was known, the other of whom had now withdrawn so distantly into the ranks of the living that... He had wanted the singleness and the still connective passion of marriage; he had had that, too, and he had not known what to do with it, and it had died. He had wanted love; and he had had love, and had relinquished it, had let it go into the chaos of potentiality. Katherine, he thought. "Katherine." And he had wanted to be a teacher, and he had become one; yet he knew, he had always known, that for most of his life he had been an indifferent one. He had dreamed of a kind of integrity, of a kind of purity that was entire; he had found compromise and the assaulting diversion of triviality. He had conceived wisdom, and at the end of the long years he had found ignorance. And what else? he thought. What else? What did you expect? he asked himself.
John Williams (Stoner)
When you decide to learn about your faults, so that they can be rectified, you open a line of communication with the source of all revelatory thought. Maybe that’s the same thing as consulting your conscience. Maybe that’s the same thing, in some manner, as a discussion with God.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
It is necessary to be strong in the face of death, because death is intrinsic to life. It is for this reason that I tell my students: aim to be the person at your father’s funeral that everyone, in their grief and misery, can rely on. There’s a worthy and noble ambition: strength in the face of adversity.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
There are no arguments. Can anyone who has reached the limit bother with arguments, causes, effects, moral considerations, and so forth? Of course not. For such a person there are only unmotivated motives for living. On the heights of despair, the passion for the absurd is the only thing that can still throw a demonic light on chaos. When all the current reasons—moral, esthetic, religious, social, and so on—no longer guide one's life, how can one sustain life without succumbing to nothingness? Only by a connection with the absurd, by love of absolute uselessness, loving something which does not have substance but which simulates an illusion of life. I live because the mountains do not laugh and the worms do not sing.
Emil M. Cioran (On the Heights of Despair)
Few beings have ever been so impregnated, pierced to the core, by the conviction of the absolute futility of human aspiration. The universe is nothing but a furtive arrangement of elementary particles. A figure in transition toward chaos. That is what will finally prevail. The human race will disappear. Other races in turn will appear and disappear. The skies will be glacial and empty, traversed by the feeble light of half-dead stars. These too will disappear. Everything will disappear. And human actions are as free and as stripped of meaning as the unfettered movements of the elementary particles. Good, evil, morality, sentiments? Pure ‘Victorian fictions.’ All that exists is egotism. Cold, intact, and radiant.
Michel Houellebecq (H.P. Lovecraft: Against the World, Against Life)
Life is a performance, I thought. Perthaps the word "illusion" would have meant more or less the same thing, but to me "performance" seemed closed to the truth. Standing there in the midst of the crowd that evening, I felt this realization swirl dizzily through my body in a dazzling splendor of light, if only for an instant. Each one of us continues to carry the heart of each self we've ever been, at every stage along the way, and a chaos of everything good and rotten. And we have to carry this weight all alone, through each day that we live. We try to be as nice as we can to the people we love, but we alone support the weight of ourselves.
Banana Yoshimoto (Goodbye Tsugumi)
It was lunar symbolism that enabled man to relate and connect such heterogeneous things as: birth, becoming, death, and ressurection; the waters, plants, woman, fecundity, and immortality; the cosmic darkness, prenatal existence, and life after death, followed by the rebirth of the lunar type ("light coming out of darkness"); weaving, the symbol of the "thread of life," fate, temporality, and death; and yet others. In general most of the ideas of cycle, dualism, polarity, opposition, conflict, but also of reconciliation of contraries, of coincidentia oppositorum, were either discovered or clarified by virtue of lunar symbolism. We may even speak of a metaphysics of the moon, in the sense of a consistent system of "truths" relating to the mode of being peculiar to living creatures, to everything in the cosmos that shares in life, that is, in becoming, growth and waning, death and ressurrection.
Mircea Eliade (The Sacred and the Profane: The Nature of Religion)
Actual life was chaos, but there was something terribly logical in the imagination. It was the imagination that set remorse to dog the feet of sin. It was the imagination that made each crime bear its misshapen brood. In the common world of fact the wicked were not punished, nor the good rewarded. Success was given to the strong, failure thrust upon the weak. That was all.
Oscar Wilde (The Picture of Dorian Gray)
What's the worth of sadness in front of happiness? Like a leaf that's blown away by the wind. What's the worth of despair in front of hope? Like a dirty stone that's thrown in a clean pond. What's the worth of chaos in front of peace? Like a flying kite that's string has been cut down. What's the worth of disunion in front of the union? Like a fish that's breathing but not in water.
Hareem Ch (Hankering for Tranquility)
Pick a leader who will make their citizens proud. One who will stir the hearts of the people, so that the sons and daughters of a given nation strive to emulate their leader's greatness. Only then will a nation be truly great, when a leader inspires and produces citizens worthy of becoming future leaders, honorable decision makers and peacemakers. And in these times, a great leader must be extremely brave. Their leadership must be steered only by their conscience, not a bribe.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
There was no meaning in life, and man by living served no end. It was immaterial whether he was born or not born, whether he lived or ceased to live. Life was insignificant and death without consequence. Philip exulted, as he had exulted in his boyhood when the weight of a belief in God was lifted from his shoulders: it seemed to him that the last burden of responsibility was taken from him; and for the first time he was utterly free. His insignificance was turned to power, and he felt himself suddenly equal with the cruel fate which had seemed to persecute him; for, if life was meaningless, the world was robbed of its cruelty. What he did or left undone did not matter. Failure was unimportant and success amounted to nothing. He was the most inconsiderate creature in that swarming mass of mankind which for a brief space occupied the surface of the earth; and he was almighty because he had wrenched from chaos the secret of its nothingness. Thoughts came tumbling over one another in Philip's eager fancy, and he took long breaths of joyous satisfaction. He felt inclined to leap and sing. He had not been so happy for months. 'Oh, life,' he cried in his heart, 'Oh life, where is thy sting?
W. Somerset Maugham (Of Human Bondage)
A NATION'S GREATNESS DEPENDS ON ITS LEADER To vastly improve your country and truly make it great again, start by choosing a better leader. Do not let the media or the establishment make you pick from the people they choose, but instead choose from those they do not pick. Pick a leader from among the people who is heart-driven, one who identifies with the common man on the street and understands what the country needs on every level. Do not pick a leader who is only money-driven and does not understand or identify with the common man, but only what corporations need on every level. Pick a peacemaker. One who unites, not divides. A cultured leader who supports the arts and true freedom of speech, not censorship. Pick a leader who will not only bail out banks and airlines, but also families from losing their homes -- or jobs due to their companies moving to other countries. Pick a leader who will fund schools, not limit spending on education and allow libraries to close. Pick a leader who chooses diplomacy over war. An honest broker in foreign relations. A leader with integrity, one who says what they mean, keeps their word and does not lie to their people. Pick a leader who is strong and confident, yet humble. Intelligent, but not sly. A leader who encourages diversity, not racism. One who understands the needs of the farmer, the teacher, the doctor, and the environmentalist -- not only the banker, the oil tycoon, the weapons developer, or the insurance and pharmaceutical lobbyist. Pick a leader who will keep jobs in your country by offering companies incentives to hire only within their borders, not one who allows corporations to outsource jobs for cheaper labor when there is a national employment crisis. Choose a leader who will invest in building bridges, not walls. Books, not weapons. Morality, not corruption. Intellectualism and wisdom, not ignorance. Stability, not fear and terror. Peace, not chaos. Love, not hate. Convergence, not segregation. Tolerance, not discrimination. Fairness, not hypocrisy. Substance, not superficiality. Character, not immaturity. Transparency, not secrecy. Justice, not lawlessness. Environmental improvement and preservation, not destruction. Truth, not lies. Most importantly, a great leader must serve the best interests of the people first, not those of multinational corporations. Human life should never be sacrificed for monetary profit. There are no exceptions. In addition, a leader should always be open to criticism, not silencing dissent. Any leader who does not tolerate criticism from the public is afraid of their dirty hands to be revealed under heavy light. And such a leader is dangerous, because they only feel secure in the darkness. Only a leader who is free from corruption welcomes scrutiny; for scrutiny allows a good leader to be an even greater leader. And lastly, pick a leader who will make their citizens proud. One who will stir the hearts of the people, so that the sons and daughters of a given nation strive to emulate their leader's greatness. Only then will a nation be truly great, when a leader inspires and produces citizens worthy of becoming future leaders, honorable decision makers and peacemakers. And in these times, a great leader must be extremely brave. Their leadership must be steered only by their conscience, not a bribe.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
To straddle that fundamental duality is to be balanced: to have one foot firmly planted in order and security, and the other in chaos, possibility, growth and adventure. When life suddenly reveals itself as intense, gripping and meaningful; when time passes and you’re so engrossed in what you’re doing you don’t notice—it is there and then that you are located precisely on the border between order and chaos.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
It's creepy, but here we are, the Pilgrims, the crackpots of our time, trying to establish our own alternate reality. To build a world out of rocks and chaos. What it's going to be, I don't know. Even after all that rushing around, where we've ended up is the middle of nowhere in the middle of the night. And maybe knowing isn't the point. Where we're standing right now, in the ruins in the dark, what we build could be anything.
Chuck Palahniuk (Choke)
Human female choosiness is also why we are very different from the common ancestor we shared with our chimpanzee cousins, while the latter are very much the same. Women’s proclivity to say no, more than any other force, has shaped our evolution into the creative, industrious, upright, large-brained (competitive, aggressive, domineering) creatures that we are.42 It is Nature as Woman who says, “Well, bucko, you’re good enough for a friend, but my experience of you so far has not indicated the suitability of your genetic material for continued propagation.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
There are many systems of interaction between brain, body and social world that can get caught in positive feedback loops. Depressed people, for example, can start feeling useless and burdensome, as well as grief-stricken and pained. This makes them withdraw from contact with friends and family. Then the withdrawal makes them more lonesome and isolated, and more likely to feel useless and burdensome. Then they withdraw more. In this manner, depression spirals and amplifies
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
A friend took me to the most amazing place the other day. It's called the Augusteum. Octavian Augustus built it to house his remains. When the barbarians came they trashed it a long with everything else. The great Augustus, Rome's first true great emperor. How could he have imagined that Rome, the whole world as far as he was concerned, would be in ruins. It's one of the quietest, loneliest places in Rome. The city has grown up around it over the centuries. It feels like a precious wound, a heartbreak you won't let go of because it hurts too good. We all want things to stay the same. Settle for living in misery because we're afraid of change, of things crumbling to ruins. Then I looked at around to this place, at the chaos it has endured - the way it has been adapted, burned, pillaged and found a way to build itself back up again. And I was reassured, maybe my life hasn't been so chaotic, it's just the world that is, and the real trap is getting attached to any of it. Ruin is a gift. Ruin is the road to transformation.
Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love)
When did they stop putting toys in cereal boxes? When I was little, I remember wandering the cereal aisle (which surely is as American a phenomenon as fireworks on the Fourth of July) and picking my breakfast food based on what the reward was: a Frisbee with the Trix rabbit's face emblazoned on the front. Holographic stickers with the Lucky Charms leprechaun. A mystery decoder wheel. I could suffer through raisin bran for a month if it meant I got a magic ring at the end. I cannot admit this out loud. In the first place, we are expected to be supermoms these days, instead of admitting that we have flaws. It is tempting to believe that all mothers wake up feeling fresh every morning, never raise their voices, only cook with organic food, and are equally at ease with the CEO and the PTA. Here's a secret: those mothers don't exist. Most of us-even if we'd never confess-are suffering through the raisin bran in the hopes of a glimpse of that magic ring. I look very good on paper. I have a family, and I write a newspaper column. In real life, I have to pick superglue out of the carpet, rarely remember to defrost for dinner, and plan to have BECAUSE I SAID SO engraved on my tombstone. Real mothers wonder why experts who write for Parents and Good Housekeeping-and, dare I say it, the Burlington Free Press-seem to have their acts together all the time when they themselves can barely keep their heads above the stormy seas of parenthood. Real mothers don't just listen with humble embarrassment to the elderly lady who offers unsolicited advice in the checkout line when a child is throwing a tantrum. We take the child, dump him in the lady's car, and say, "Great. Maybe YOU can do a better job." Real mothers know that it's okay to eat cold pizza for breakfast. Real mothers admit it is easier to fail at this job than to succeed. If parenting is the box of raisin bran, then real mothers know the ratio of flakes to fun is severely imbalanced. For every moment that your child confides in you, or tells you he loves you, or does something unprompted to protect his brother that you happen to witness, there are many more moments of chaos, error, and self-doubt. Real mothers may not speak the heresy, but they sometimes secretly wish they'd chosen something for breakfast other than this endless cereal. Real mothers worry that other mothers will find that magic ring, whereas they'll be looking and looking for ages. Rest easy, real mothers. The very fact that you worry about being a good mom means that you already are one.
Jodi Picoult (House Rules)
What is the purpose of writing music? One is, of course, not dealing with purposes but dealing with sounds. Or the answer must take the form of a paradox: a purposeful purposeless or a purposeless play. This play, however, is an affirmation of life--not an attempt to bring order out of chaos nor to suggest improvements in creation, but simply a way of waking up to the very life we’re living, which is so excellent once one gets one’s mind and one’s desires out of its way and lets it act of its own accord.
John Cage (Silence: Lectures and Writings)
when once-naïve people recognize in themselves the seeds of evil and monstrosity, and see themselves as dangerous (at least potentially) their fear decreases. They develop more self-respect. Then, perhaps, they begin to resist oppression. They see that they have the ability to withstand, because they are terrible too. They see they can and must stand up, because they begin to understand how genuinely monstrous they will become, otherwise, feeding on their resentment, transforming it into the most destructive of wishes. To say it again: There is very little difference between the capacity for mayhem and destruction, integrated, and strength of character. This is one of the most difficult lessons of life.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Writing, like life itself, is a voyage of discovery. The adventure is a metaphysical one: it is a way of approaching life indirectly, of acquiring a total rather than a partial view of the universe. The writer lives between the upper and lower worlds: he takes the path in order eventually to become that path himself. ”I began in absolute chaos and darkness, in a bog or swamp of ideas and emotions and experiences. Even now I do not consider myself a writer, in the ordinary sense of the word. I am a man telling the story of his life, a process which appears more and more inexhaustible as I go on. Like the world-evolution, it is endless. It is a turning inside out, a voyaging through X dimensions, with the result that somewhere along the way one discovers that what one has to tell is not nearly so important as the telling itself. It is this quality about all art which gives it a metaphysical hue, which lifts it out of time and space and centers or integrates it to the whole cosmic process. It is this about art which is ‘therapeutic’: significance, purposefulness, infinitude. ”From the very beginning almost I was deeply aware that there is no goal. I never hope to embrace the whole, but merely to give in each separate fragment, each work, the feeling of the whole as I go on, because I am digging deeper and deeper into life, digging deeper and deeper into past and future. With the endless burrowing a certitude develops which is greater than faith or belief. I become more and more indifferent to my fate, as writer, and more and more certain of my destiny as a man.
Henry Miller (Henry Miller on Writing)
Knowing you don’t have much time left changes things. You get kind of philosophical. And you figure things out—more like, they figure themselves out—and everything gets real clear. Your first kiss isn’t as important as your last. The math test really didn’t matter. The pie really did. The stuff you’re good at and the stuff you’re bad at are just different parts of the same thing. Same goes for the people you love and the people you don’t—and the people who love you and the people who don’t. The only thing that mattered was that you cared about a few people. Life is really, really short.
Kami Garcia (Beautiful Chaos (Caster Chronicles, #3))
You must determine where you are going, so that you can bargain for yourself, so that you don’t end up resentful, vengeful and cruel. You have to articulate your own principles, so that you can defend yourself against others’ taking inappropriate advantage of you, and so that you are secure and safe while you work and play. You must discipline yourself carefully. You must keep the promises you make to yourself, and reward yourself, so that you can trust and motivate yourself. You need to determine how to act toward yourself so that you are most likely to become and to stay a good person. It would be good to make the world a better place.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
It was not death, for I stood up, And all the dead lie down; It was not night, for all the bells Put out their tongues, for noon. It was not frost, for on my flesh I felt siroccos crawl, Nor fire, for just my marble feet Could keep a chancel cool. And yet it tasted like them all; The figures I have seen Set orderly, for burial, Reminded me of mine, As if my life were shaven And fitted to a frame, And could not breathe without a key; And I was like midnight, some, When everything that ticked has stopped, And space stares, all around, Or grisly frosts, first autumn morns, Repeal the beating ground. But most like chaos,--stopless, cool, Without a chance or spar,-- Or even a report of land To justify despair.
Emily Dickinson (I'm Nobody! Who Are You? (Scholastic Classics))
Supposing there is no life everlasting. Think what it means if death is really the end of all things. They've given up all for nothing. They've been cheated. They're dupes." Waddington reflected for a little while. "I wonder if it matters what they have aimed at is illusion. Their lives are in themselves beautiful. I have an idea that the only thing which makes it possible to regard this world we live in without disgust is the beauty which now and then men create out of the chaos. The pictures they paint, the music they compose, the books the write, and the lives they lead. Of all these the richest beauty is the beautiful life. That is the perfect work of art.
W. Somerset Maugham (The Painted Veil)
Tania, I was spellbound by you from the first moment I saw you. There I was, living my dissolute life, and war had just started. My entire base was in disarray, people were running around, closing accounts, taking money out, grabbing food out of stores, buying up the entire Gostiny Dvor, volunteering for the army, sending their kids to camp—” He broke off. “And in the middle of my chaos, there was you!” Alexander whispered passionately. “You were sitting alone on this bench, impossibly young, breathtakingly blonde and lovely, and you were eating ice cream with such abandon, such pleasure, such mystical delight that I could not believe my eyes. As if there were nothing else in the world on that summer Sunday.
Paullina Simons (The Bronze Horseman (The Bronze Horseman, #1))
For whatever reason God chose to make man as he is— limited and suffering and subject to sorrows and death—He had the honesty and the courage to take His own medicine. Whatever game He is playing with His creation, He has kept His own rules and played fair. He can exact nothing from man that He has not exacted from Himself. He has Himself gone through the whole of human experience, from the trivial irritations of family life and the cramping restrictions of hard work and lack of money to the worst horrors of pain and humiliation, defeat, despair and death. When He was a man, He played the man. He was born in poverty and died in disgrace and thought it well worthwhile.
Dorothy L. Sayers (Creed or Chaos? and Lost Tools of Learning)
Say what you mean, so that you can find out what you mean. Act out what you say, so you can find out what happens. Then pay attention. Note your errors. Articulate them. Strive to correct them. That is how you discover the meaning of your life. That will protect you from the tragedy of your life. How could it be otherwise? Confront the chaos of Being. Take aim against a sea of troubles. Specify your destination, and chart your course. Admit to what you want. Tell those around you who you are. Narrow, and gaze attentively, and move forward, forthrightly. Be precise in your speech.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Because what you give your attention to is the person you become. Put another way: the mind is the portal to the soul, and what you fill your mind with will shape the trajectory of your character. In the end, your life is no more than the sum of what you gave your attention to. That bodes well for those apprentices of Jesus who give the bulk of their attention to him and to all that is good, beautiful, and true in his world. But not for those who give their attention to the 24-7 news cycle of outrage and anxiety and emotion-charged drama or the nonstop feed of celebrity gossip, titillation, and cultural drivel. (As if we “give” it in the first place; much of it is stolen by a clever algorithm out to monetize our precious attention.) But again: we become what we give our attention to, for better or worse.
John Mark Comer (The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry: How to stay emotionally healthy and spiritually alive in the chaos of the modern world)
I closed my eyes. “Seth—” "And when I was there and Erik sent me wherever he did, I felt…well, it was beyond anything I’d experienced. At first, I was so confused and disoriented. I didn’t get what they were saying about finding you. It seemed surreal. Then, it was the easiest thing in the world. I just looked for you, and there you were. In all that space and all that chaos, reaching you was like looking into myself. We were so close…it defied physics and every rule of nature I knew. It didn’t seem real that I could be together with anyone like that. And when it was over, it’s like I said—I wasn’t sure what I’d just been a part of. But I knew that I had never experienced any bond like that with any other woman. Maybe you’re the only one, maybe there’s another…but regardless, I didn’t have it with Maddie. She’s amazing. I do love her. But in that situation again? I would never find her. And I knew it wasn’t fair to lead her into a life without that connection. You and I…I don’t understand what’s between us, but I’d rather spend my life alone than with someone who isn’t you.
Richelle Mead (Succubus Shadows (Georgina Kincaid, #5))
A self-destructive man feels completely alienated, utterly alone. He's an outsider to the human community. He thinks to himself, "I must be insane." What he fails to realize is that society has, just as he does, a vested interest in considerable losses and catastrophes. These wars, famines, floods and quakes meet well-defined needs. Man wants chaos. In fact, he has to have it. Depression, strife, riots, murder - all this dread. We're irresistibly drawn to that almost orgiastic state created out of death and destruction. It's in all of us. We revel in it. Sure, the media tries to put a sad face on these things and paints them up as great human tragedies. But we all know the function of the media has never been to eliminate the evils of the world - no! Their job is to persuade us to accept those evils and get used to living with them. The powers that be want us to be passive observers, and they haven't given us any other options outside the occasional, purely symbolic, participatory act of voting. "You want the puppet on the right or the puppet on the left?" I feel that the time has come to project my own inadequacies and dissatisfactions into the sociopolitical and scientific schemes, let my own lack of a voice be heard.
Richard Linklater
Nor had he, as far as he knew, ever believed in anything. It had been embarrassing, because he quite wanted to believe in something, since he recognized that belief was the lifebelt that got most people through the choppy waters of Life. He'd have liked to believe in a supreme God, although he'd have preferred a half-hour's chat with Him before committing himself, to clear up one or two points. He'd sat in all sorts of churches, waiting for that single flash of blue light, and it hadn't come. And then he'd tried to become an official Atheist and hadn't got the rock-hard, self-satisfied strength of belief even for that. And every single political party had seemed to him equally dishonest. And he'd give up on ecology...Then he'd tried believe in the Universe, which seemed sound enough until he'd innocently started reading books with words like Chaos and Time and Quantum in the titles. He'd found that even the people whose job of work was, so to speak, the Universe, didn't really believe in it and were actually quite proud of not knowing what or even if it could theoretically exist.
Terry Pratchett (Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch)
(a) Are the skies you sleep under likely to open up for weeks on end? (b) Is the ground you walk on likely to tremble and split? (c) Is there a chance (and please check the box, no matter how small that chance seems) that the ominous mountain casting a midday shadow over your home might one day erupt with no rhyme or reason? Because if the answer is yes to one or all of these questions, then the life you lead is a midnight thing, always a hair's breadth from the witching hour; it is volatile, it is threadbare; it is carefree in the true sense of that term; it is light, losable like a key or a hair clip. And it is lethargy: why not sit all morning, all day, all year, under the same cypress tree drawing the figure eight in the dust? More than that, it is disaster, it is chaos: why not overthrow a government on a whim, why not blind the man you hate, why not go mad, go gibbering through the town like a loon, waving your hands, tearing your hair? There's nothing to stop you---or rather anything could stop you, any hour, any minute. That feeling. That's the real difference in a life.
Zadie Smith
Its substance was known to me. The crawling infinity of colours, the chaos of textures that went into each strand of that eternally complex tapestry…each one resonated under the step of the dancing mad god, vibrating and sending little echoes of bravery, or hunger, or architecture, or argument, or cabbage or murder or concrete across the aether. The weft of starlings’ motivations connected to the thick, sticky strand of a young thief’s laugh. The fibres stretched taut and glued themselves solidly to a third line, its silk made from the angles of seven flying buttresses to a cathedral roof. The plait disappeared into the enormity of possible spaces. Every intention, interaction, motivation, every colour, every body, every action and reaction, every piece of physical reality and the thoughts that it engendered, every connection made, every nuanced moment of history and potentiality, every toothache and flagstone, every emotion and birth and banknote, every possible thing ever is woven into that limitless, sprawling web. It is without beginning or end. It is complex to a degree that humbles the mind. It is a work of such beauty that my soul wept... ..I have danced with the spider. I have cut a caper with the dancing mad god.
China Miéville (Perdido Street Station (New Crobuzon, #1))
Consult your resentment. It’s a revelatory emotion, for all its pathology. It’s part of an evil triad: arrogance, deceit, and resentment. Nothing causes more harm than this underworld Trinity. But resentment always means one of two things. Either the resentful person is immature, in which case he or she should shut up, quit whining, and get on with it, or there is tyranny afoot—in which case the person subjugated has a moral obligation to speak up. Why? Because the consequence of remaining silent is worse. Of course, it’s easier in the moment to stay silent and avoid conflict. But in the long term, that’s deadly. When you have something to say, silence is a lie—and tyranny feeds on lies. When should you push back against oppression, despite the danger? When you start nursing secret fantasies of revenge; when your life is being poisoned and your imagination fills with the wish to devour and destroy.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Take stock of those around you and you will … hear them talk in precise terms about themselves and their surroundings, which would seem to point to them having ideas on the matter. But start to analyse those ideas and you will find that they hardly reflect in any way the reality to which they appear to refer, and if you go deeper you will discover that there is not even an attempt to adjust the ideas to this reality. Quite the contrary: through these notions the individual is trying to cut off any personal vision of reality, of his own very life. For life is at the start a chaos in which one is lost. The individual suspects this, but he is frightened at finding himself face to face with this terrible reality, and tries to cover it over with a curtain of fantasy, where everything is clear. It does not worry him that his “ideas” are not true, he uses them as trenches for the defense of his existence, as scarecrows to frighten away reality.
Ernest Becker (The Denial of Death)
So, kid, you’ve got to live, and not just that stoic existence you’ve been stomping trough all this time. You’ve got to be kind, you’ve got to fall in love, fall out of love, no matter how much it hurts because my god, it’s worth it. Don’t let the world turn you to stone; you’ve got to feel. And sometimes, your heart will threaten to march right out of your chest because you’re so fucking full of it all- of the people, the places, the endless days, the eternal nights- and kid, that’s fine. Be brave. Courage isn’t measured by the number of people you’ve turned away or by the counts of the nights you’ve spent alone because you refuse to give someone the chance to love you. Being alone is not poetic; you’ve got to let them in. Let them peel back your skin and waltz into your bloodstream and love them, love them, love them. And finally, kid, your life has already begun. Stop waiting. Chaos is already underway.
E.P. .
Art has to be a kind of confession. I don’t mean a true confession in the sense of that dreary magazine. The effort it seems to me, is: if you can examine and face your life, you can discover the terms with which you are connected to other lives, and they can discover them, too — the terms with which they are connected to other people. This has happened to every one of us, I’m sure. You read something which you thought only happened to you, and you discovered it happened 100 years ago to Dostoyevsky. This is a very great liberation for the suffering, struggling person, who always thinks that they are alone. This is why art is important. Art would not be important if life were not important, and life is important. Most of us, no matter what we say, are walking in the dark, whistling in the dark. Nobody knows what is going to happen to them from one moment to the next, or how one will bear it. This is irreducible. And it’s true for everybody. Now, it is true that the nature of society is to create, among its citizens, an illusion of safety; but it is also absolutely true that the safety is always necessarily an illusion. Artists are here to disturb the peace. They have to disturb the peace. Otherwise, chaos.
James Baldwin
I understand the mechanism of my own thinking. I know precisely how I know, and my understanding is recursive. I understand the infinite regress of this self-knowing, not by proceeding step by step endlessly, but by apprehending the limit. The nature of recursive cognition is clear to me. A new meaning of the term "self-aware." Fiat logos. I know my mind in terms of a language more expressive than any I'd previously imagined. Like God creating order from chaos with an utterance, I make myself anew with this language. It is meta-self-descriptive and self-editing; not only can it describe thought, it can describe and modify its own operations as well, at all levels. What Gödel would have given to see this language, where modifying a statement causes the entire grammar to be adjusted. With this language, I can see how my mind is operating. I don't pretend to see my own neurons firing; such claims belong to John Lilly and his LSD experiments of the sixties. What I can do is perceive the gestalts; I see the mental structures forming, interacting. I see myself thinking, and I see the equations that describe my thinking, and I see myself comprehending the equations, and I see how the equations describe their being comprehended. I know how they make up my thoughts. These thoughts.
Ted Chiang (Stories of Your Life and Others)
When my now-adult daughter was a child, another child once hit her on the head with a metal toy truck. I watched that same child, one year later, viciously push his younger sister backwards over a fragile glass-surfaced coffee table. His mother picked him up, immediately afterward (but not her frightened daughter), and told him in hushed tones not to do such things, while she patted him comfortingly in a manner clearly indicative of approval. She was out to produce a little God-Emperor of the Universe. That’s the unstated goal of many a mother, including many who consider themselves advocates for full gender equality. Such women will object vociferously to any command uttered by an adult male, but will trot off in seconds to make their progeny a peanut-butter sandwich if he demands it while immersed self-importantly in a video game. The future mates of such boys have every reason to hate their mothers-in-law. Respect for women? That’s for other boys, other men—not for their dear sons.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
Show me a man who over-elaborates and I will show you a great man! What is called their 'overelaboration' is my meat: it is the sign of struggle, it is struggle itself with all the fibers clinging to it, the very aura and ambiance of the discordant spirit. And when you show me a man who expresses himself perfectly I will not say that he is not great, but I will say that I am unattracted . . . I miss the cloying qualities. When I reflect that the task which the artist implicitly sets himself is to overthrow existing values, to make of the chaos about him an order which is his own, to sow strife and ferment so that by the emotional release those who are dead may be restored to life, then it is that I run with joy to the great and imperfect ones, their confusion nourishes me, their stuttering is like divine music to my ears.
Henry Miller (Tropic of Cancer (Tropic, #1))
We in our age are faced with a strange paradox. Never before have we had so much information in bits and pieces flooded upon us by radio and television and satellite, yet never before have we had so little inner certainty about our own being. The more objective truth increases, the more our inner certitude decreases. Our fantastically increased technical power, and each forward step in technology is experienced by many as a new push toward our possible annihilation. Nietzsche was strangely prophetic when he said, “We live in a period of atomic chaos…the terrible apparition…the Nation State…and the hunt for happiness will never be greater than when it must be caught between today and tomorrow; because the day after tomorrow all hunting time may have come to an end altogether.” Sensing this, and despairing of ever finding meaning in life, people these days seize on the many ways of dulling their awareness by apathy, by psychic numbing, or by hedonism. Others, especially young people, elect in alarming and increasing numbers to escape their own being by suicide.
Rollo May (The Discovery of Being: Writings in Existential Psychology)
Each person held aloft a single lit candle—the city’s traditional way to express its appreciation for that year’s peace prize winner. It was a magical sight, as if a pool of stars had descended from the sky; and as Michelle and I leaned out to wave, the night air brisk on our cheeks, the crowd cheering wildly, I couldn’t help but think about the daily fighting that continued to consume Iraq and Afghanistan and all the cruelty and suffering and injustice that my administration had barely even begun to deal with. The idea that I, or any one person, could bring order to such chaos seemed laughable; on some level, the crowds below were cheering an illusion. And yet, in the flickering of those candles, I saw something else. I saw an expression of the spirit of millions of people around the world: the U.S. soldier manning a post in Kandahar, the mother in Iran teaching her daughter to read, the Russian pro-democracy activist mustering his courage for an upcoming demonstration—all those who refused to give up on the idea that life could be better, and that whatever the risks and hardships, they had a role to play. Whatever you do won’t be enough, I heard their voices say. Try anyway.
Barack Obama (A Promised Land)
And, indeed, this is the odd thing that is continually happening: there are continually turning up in life moral and rational persons, sages and lovers of humanity who make it their object to live all their lives as morally and rationally as possible, to be, so to speak, a light to their neighbours simply in order to show them that it is possible to live morally and rationally in this world. And yet we all know that those very people sooner or later have been false to themselves, playing some queer trick, often a most unseemly one. Now I ask you: what can be expected of man since he is a being endowed with strange qualities? Shower upon him every earthly blessing, drown him in a sea of happiness, so that nothing but bubbles of bliss can be seen on the surface; give him economic prosperity, such that he should have nothing else to do but sleep, eat cakes and busy himself with the continuation of his species, and even then out of sheer ingratitude, sheer spite, man would play you some nasty trick. He would even risk his cakes and would deliberately desire the most fatal rubbish, the most uneconomical absurdity, simply to introduce into all this positive good sense his fatal fantastic element. It is just his fantastic dreams, his vulgar folly that he will desire to retain, simply in order to prove to himself--as though that were so necessary-- that men still are men and not the keys of a piano, which the laws of nature threaten to control so completely that soon one will be able to desire nothing but by the calendar. And that is not all: even if man really were nothing but a piano-key, even if this were proved to him by natural science and mathematics, even then he would not become reasonable, but would purposely do something perverse out of simple ingratitude, simply to gain his point. And if he does not find means he will contrive destruction and chaos, will contrive sufferings of all sorts, only to gain his point!
Fyodor Dostoevsky
A non-religious man today ignores what he considers sacred but, in the structure of his consciousness, could not be without the ideas of being and the meaningful. He may consider these purely human aspects of the structure of consciousness. What we see today is that man considers himself to have nothing sacred, no god; but still his life has a meaning, because without it he could not live; he would be in chaos. He looks for being and does not immediately call it being, but meaning or goals; he behaves in his existence as if he had a kind of center. He is going somewhere, he is doing something. We do not see anything religious here; we just see man behaving as a human being. But as a historian of religion, I am not certain that there is nothing religious here… I cannot consider exclusively what that man tells me when he consciously says, ‘I don’t believe in God; I believe in history,’ and so on. For example, I do not think that Jean-Paul Sartre gives all of himself in his philosophy, because I know that Sartre sleeps and dreams and likes music and goes to the theater. And in the theater he gets into a temporal dimension in which he no longer lives his ‘moment historique.’ There he lives in quite another dimension. We live in another dimension when we listen to Bach. Another experience of time is given in drama. We spend two hours at a play, and yet the time represented in the play occupies years and years. We also dream. This is the complete man. I cannot cut this complete man off and believe someone immediately when he consciously says that he is not a religious man. I think that unconsciously, this man still behaves as the ‘homo religiosus,’ has some source of value and meaning, some images, is nourished by his unconscious, by the imaginary universe of the poems he reads, of the plays he sees; he still lives in different universes. I cannot limit his universe to that purely self-conscious, rationalistic universe which he pretends to inhabit, since that universe is not human.
Mircea Eliade
These are the three stages of enlightenment, the three glimpses of satori. 1. The first stage enlightenment: A Glimpse of the Whole The first stage of enlightenment is short glimpse from faraway of the whole. It is a short glimpse of being. The first stage of enlightenment is when, for the first time, for a single moment the mind is not functioning. The ordinary ego is still present at the first stage of enlightenment, but you experience for a short while that there is something beyond the ego. There is a gap, a silence and emptiness, where there is not thought between you and existence. You and existence meet and merge for a moment. And for the first time the seed, the thirst and longing, for enlightenment, the meeting between you and existence, will grow in your heart. 2. The second stage of enlightenment: Silence, Relaxation, Togetherness, Inner Being The second stage of enlightenment is a new order, a harmony, from within, which comes from the inner being. It is the quality of freedom. The inner chaos has disappeared and a new silence, relaxation and togetherness has arisen. Your own wisdom from within has arisen. A subtle ego is still present in the second stage of enlightenment. The Hindus has three names for the ego: 1. Ahamkar, which is the ordinary ego. 2. Asmita, which is the quality of Am-ness, of no ego. It is a very silent ego, not aggreessive, but it is still a subtle ego. 3. Atma, the third word is Atma, when the Am-ness is also lost. This is what Buddha callas no-self, pure being. In the second stage of enlightenment you become capable of being in the inner being, in the gap, in the meditative quality within, in the silence and emptiness. For hours, for days, you can remain in the gap, in utter aloneness, in God. Still you need effort to remain in the gap, and if you drop the effort, the gap will disappear. Love, meditation and prayer becomes the way to increase the effort in the search for God. Then the second stage becomes a more conscious effort. Now you know the way, you now the direction. 3. The third stage of enlightenment: Ocean, Wholeness, No-self, Pure being At the third stage of enlightenment, at the third step of Satori, our individual river flowing silently, suddenly reaches to the Ocean and becomes one with the Ocean. At the third Satori, the ego is lost, and there is Atma, pure being. You are, but without any boundaries. The river has become the Ocean, the Whole. It has become a vast emptiness, just like the pure sky. The third stage of enlightenment happens when you have become capable of finding the inner being, the meditative quality within, the gap, the inner silence and emptiness, so that it becomes a natural quality. You can find the gap whenever you want. This is what tantra callas Mahamudra, the great orgasm, what Buddha calls Nirvana, what Lao Tzu calls Tao and what Jesus calls the kingdom of God. You have found the door to God. You have come home.
Swami Dhyan Giten
Off To The Races" My old man is a bad man but I can't deny the way he holds my hand And he grabs me, he has me by my heart He doesn't mind I have a Las Vegas past He doesn't mind I have an LA crass way about me He loves me with every beat of his cocaine heart Swimming pool glimmering darling White bikini off with my red nail polish Watch me in the swimming pool bright blue ripples you Sitting sipping on your black Cristal Oh yeah Light of my life, fire of my loins Be a good baby, do what I want Light of my life, fire of my loins Give me them gold coins, gimme them coins And I'm off to the races, cases of Bacardi chasers Chasing me all over town Cause he knows I'm wasted, facing Time again at Riker's Island and I won't get out Because I'm crazy, baby I need you to come here and save me I'm your little scarlet, starlet singing in the garden Kiss me on my open mouth Ready for you My old man is a tough man but He's got a soul as sweet as blood red jam And he shows me, he knows me Every inch of my tar black soul He doesn't mind I have a flat broke down life In fact he says he thinks it's why he might like about me Admires me, the way I roll like a Rolling Stone Likes to watch me in the glass room bathroom, Chateau Marmont Slippin' on my red dress, puttin' on my makeup Glass film, perfume, cognac, lilac Fumes, says it feels like heaven to him Light of his life, fire of his loins Keep me forever, tell me you own me Light of your life, fire of your loins Tell me you own me, gimme them coins And I'm off to the races, cases of Bacardi chasers Chasing me all over town Cause he knows I'm wasted, facing Time again at Riker's Island and I won't get out Because I'm crazy, baby I need you to come here and save me I'm your little scarlet, starlet singing in the garden Kiss me on my open mouth Now I'm off to the races, laces Leather on my waist is tight and I am fallin' down I can see your face is shameless, Cipriani's basement Love you but I'm going down God I'm so crazy, baby, I'm sorry that I'm misbehaving I'm your little harlot, starlet, Queen of Coney Island Raising hell all over town Sorry 'bout it My old man is a thief and I'm gonna stay and pray with him 'til the end But I trust in the decision of the Lord to watch over us Take him when he may, if he may I'm not afraid to say that I'd die without him Who else is gonna put up with me this way? I need you, I breathe you, I never leave you They would rue the day I was alone without you You're lying with your gold chain on, cigar hanging from your lips I said "Hon' you never looked so beautiful as you do now, my man." And we're off to the races, places Ready, set the gate is down and now we're goin' in To Las Vegas chaos, Casino Oasis, honey it is time to spin Boy you're so crazy, baby, I love you forever not maybe You are my one true love, you are my one true love You are my one true love
Lana Del Rey
I've been sitting here now, and do you know what I was saying to myself? If I did not believe in life, if I were to lose faith in the woman I love, if I were to lose faith in the order of things, even if I were to become convinced, on the contrary, that everything is a disorderly, damned, and perhaps devilish chaos, if I were struck even by all the horrors of human disillusionment--still I would want to live, and as long as I have bent to this cup, I will not tear myself from it until I've drunk it all. However, by the age of thirty, I will probably drop the cup, even if I haven't emptied it, and walk away...I don't know where. But until my thirtieth year, I know this for certain, my youth will overcome everything--all disillusionment, all aversion to live. I've asked myself many times: is there such despair in the world as could overcome this wild and perhaps indecent thirst for life in me, and have decided that apparently there is not--that is, once again, until my thirtieth year, after which I myself shall want no more, so it seems to me. Some snotty-nosed, consumptive moralists, poets especially, often call this thirst for life base. True, it's a feature of the Karamazovs, to some extent, this thirst for life despite all; it must be sitting in you too; but why is it base? There is still an awful lot of centripetal force on our planet, Alyosha. I want to live, and I do live, even if it be against logic. Though I do not believe in the order of things, still the sticky little leaves that come out in the spring are dear to me, the blue sky is dear to me, some people are dear to me, whom one loves sometimes, would you believe it, without even knowing why; some human deeds are dear to me, which one has perhaps long ceased believing in, but still honors with one's heart, out of old habit...I want to go to Europe, Alyosha, I'll go straight from here. Of course I know that I will only be going to a graveyard, but to the most, the most previous graveyard, that's the thing! The precious dead lie there, each stone over them speaks of such ardent past life, of such passionate faith in their deeds, their truth, their struggle, and their science, that I--this I know beforehand--will fall to the ground and kiss those stones and weep over them--being wholeheartedly convinced, at the same time, that it has all long been a graveyard and nothing more. And I will not weep from despair, but simply because I will be happy in my shed tears. I will be drunk with my own tenderness. Sticky spring leaves, the blue sky--I love them, that's all! Such things you love not with your mind, not with logic, but with your insides, your guts, you love your first young strength...
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Brothers Karamazov)
I believe in Free Will, the Force Almighty by which we conduct ourselves as if we were the sons and daughters of a just and wise God, even if there is no such Supreme Being. And by free will, we can choose to do good on this earth, no matter that we all die, and do not know where we go when we die, or if a justice or explanation awaits us. I believe that we can, through our reason, know what good is, and in the communion of men and women, in which the forgiveness of wrongs will always be more significant than the avenging of them, and that in the beautiful natural world that surrounds us, we represent the best and the finest of beings, for we alone can see that natural beauty, appreciate it, learn from it, weep for it, and seek to conserve it and protect it. I believe finally that we are the only true moral force in the physical world, the makers of, ethics and moral ideas, and that we must be as good as the gods we created in the past to guide us. I believe that through our finest efforts, we will succeed finally in creating heaven on earth, and we do it every time that we love, every time that we embrace, every time that we commit to create rather than destroy, every time that we place life over death, and the natural over what is unnatural, insofar as we are able to define it. And I suppose I do believe in the final analysis that a peace of mind can be obtained in the face of the worst horrors and the worst losses. It can be obtained by faith in change and in will and in accident and by faith in ourselves, that we will do the right thing, more often than not, in the face of adversity. For ours is the power and the glory, because we are capable of visions and ideas which are ultimately stronger and more enduring than we are. That is my credo. That is my belief, for what it's worth, and it sustains me. And if I were to die right now, I wouldn't be afraid. Because I can't believe that horror or chaos awaits us. If any revelation awaits us at all, it must be as good as our ideals and our philosophy. For surely nature must embrace the visible and the invisible, and it couldn't fall short of us. The thing that makes the flowers open and the snowflakes fall must contain a wisdom and a final secret as intricate and beautiful as the blooming camellia or the clouds gathering above, so white and so pure in the blackness. If that isn't so, then we are in the grip of a staggering irony. And all the spooks of hell might as well dance. There could be a devil. People who burn other people to death are fine. There could be anything. But the world is simply to beautiful for that. At least it seems that way to me.
Anne Rice (The Witching Hour (Lives of the Mayfair Witches, #1))