Comparison Of Beauty Quotes

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To the people who love you, you are beautiful already. This is not because they’re blind to your shortcomings but because they so clearly see your soul. Your shortcomings then dim by comparison. The people who care about you are willing to let you be imperfect and beautiful, too. (20)
Victoria Moran (Lit From Within: Tending Your Soul For Lifelong Beauty)
Now, even more than the evening before, he could think of no one with whom to compare her. She had become absolute, beyond comparison. She had become decision and fate.
Yasunari Kawabata (Thousand Cranes)
A voice had begun to sing. It was very far away and Digory found it hard to decide from what direction it was coming. Sometimes it seemed to come from all directions at once. Sometimes he almost thought it was coming out of the earth beneath them. Its lower notes were deep enough to be the voice of the earth herself. There were no words. It was hardly a tune. But it was beyond comparison, the most beautiful sound he had ever heard.
C.S. Lewis (The Magician’s Nephew (Chronicles of Narnia, #6))
Why should we place Christ at the top and summit of the human race? Was he kinder, more forgiving, more self-sacrificing than Buddha? Was he wiser, did he meet death with more perfect calmness, than Socrates? Was he more patient, more charitable, than Epictetus? Was he a greater philosopher, a deeper thinker, than Epicurus? In what respect was he the superior of Zoroaster? Was he gentler than Lao-tsze, more universal than Confucius? Were his ideas of human rights and duties superior to those of Zeno? Did he express grander truths than Cicero? Was his mind subtler than Spinoza’s? Was his brain equal to Kepler’s or Newton’s? Was he grander in death – a sublimer martyr than Bruno? Was he in intelligence, in the force and beauty of expression, in breadth and scope of thought, in wealth of illustration, in aptness of comparison, in knowledge of the human brain and heart, of all passions, hopes and fears, the equal of Shakespeare, the greatest of the human race?
Robert G. Ingersoll (About The Holy Bible)
Jack couldn't help but watch Nonie as she left. She looked to be twenty-nine, thirty at the most, stood maybe five foot-four and was slender. She had shoulder-length, curly, walnut-colored hair and the largest most beautiful blue eyes he'd ever seem Her nose and ears were small in comparison to her full lips, which he'd give anything to kiss.
Deborah Leblanc (Toe to Toe (Nonie Broussard Ghost Tracker Series))
We inhabit a universe where atoms are made in the centers of stars; where each second a thousand suns are born; where life is sparked by sunlight and lightning in the airs and waters of youthful planets; where the raw material for biological evolution is sometimes made by the explosion of a star halfway across the Milky Way; where a thing as beautiful as a galaxy is formed a hundred billion times - a Cosmos of quasars and quarks, snowflakes and fireflies, where there may be black holes and other universe and extraterrestrial civilizations whose radio messages are at this moment reaching the Earth. How pallid by comparison are the pretensions of superstition and pseudoscience; how important it is for us to pursue and understand science, that characteristically human endeavor.
Carl Sagan (Cosmos)
And through all the misery, she said that some of us in this lifetime experience a moment of beauty beyond reckoning. I asked her what that was, and she said, "If you're one of the lucky ones, you'll know it when you see it. You'll understand why the gods have made you suffer. Because that moment's reward will make your knees weak and everything you've suffered in life will pale in comparison.
Melina Marchetta (Quintana of Charyn (Lumatere Chronicles, #3))
People talk about beautiful relationships between two persons of the same sex. What is the best of that sort as compared with the friendship of man and wife where the best impulses and highest ideals of both are the same? There is no place for comparison between the two friendships; the one is earthly, the other divine.
Mark Twain (A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court)
Everyone was pointing upward at the sky, which was turning into a symphony of color. First, orange streaks appeared in the blue, like an oboe joining a flute, turning a solo into a duet. That harmony built into a crescendo of colors as yellow and then pink added their voices to the chorus. The sky darkened, throwing the array of colors into even sharper relief. The word sunset couldn't possibly contain the meaning of the beauty above them, and for the millionth time since they'd landed, Wells found that the words they'd been taught to describe Earth paled in comparison to the real thing.
Kass Morgan (The 100 (The 100, #1))
There are endless sexy shapes, colors, forms, and kinds of people who deserve celebration. It’s each one of our jobs to reject that comparison of what we think beauty is and realize we are the motherfucking beauty.
Jonathan Van Ness (Over the Top: A Raw Journey to Self-Love)
Does the beauty of life remain alive without making a comparison?
Suman Pokhrel
To say she was attractive would be an understatement. Calling her 'attractive' would be like calling the Taj Mahal a marble grave.
Mallika Nawal (I'm a Woman & I'm on SALE (I'm a Woman, #1))
Why allow all the old memories to have supremacy? Make new ones, memories of such luster and beauty that, should the old ones come back, they would be pallid and impotent in comparison.
Sherry Thomas (Tempting the Bride (Fitzhugh Trilogy, #3))
[There's] one... thing I can tell you about human nature: beautiful people are the last ones you want to befriend. Beautiful people float through life thinking that it's perfectly normal for others to gaze at them adoringly, and open doors for them, and defer to their opinion... Doesn't anyone understand that beautiful people are stupid? That's why nature made them beautiful, so they'd have a chance at surviving in the wild. And how do they survive? They use people and then they drop people, and they float away on the currents of their own gorgeousness to the next poor girl who thinks that being friends with a beutiful person will somehow make her beautiful, too. I've got news for you: Hanging around beautiful people just makes you uglier by comparison.
Amy Kathleen Ryan (Vibes)
The solution, she advises, is, “when you meet a woman who is intimidatingly witty, stylish, beautiful, and professionally accomplished, befriend her. Surrounding yourself with the best people doesn’t make you look worse by comparison. It makes you look better.” Marital
Rebecca Traister (All the Single Ladies: Unmarried Women and the Rise of an Independent Nation)
Don't dwell in comparisons; be your own kinda' beautiful
Soke Behzad Ahmadi
Picture to yourself the most beautiful girl imaginable! She was so beautiful that there would be no point, in view of my meagre talent for storytelling, in even trying to put her beauty into words. That would far exceed my capabilities, so I'll refrain from mentioning whether she was a blonde or a brunette or a redhead, or whether her hair was long or short or curly or smooth as silk. I shall also refrain from the usual comparisons where her complexion was concerned, for instance milk, velvet, satin, peaches and cream, honey or ivory, Instead, I shall leave it entirely up to your imagination to fill in this blank with your own ideal of feminine beauty.
Walter Moers (The Alchemaster's Apprentice: A Culinary Tale from Zamonia by Optimus Yarnspinner (Zamonia, #5))
Next to the true beauty and magic of the real world, supernatural spells and stage tricks seem cheap and tawdry by comparison. The magic of reality is neither supernatural nor a trick, but – quite simply – wonderful. Wonderful, and real. Wonderful because real.
Richard Dawkins (The Magic of Reality)
Like his fellow genius, Tolkien, C.S. Lewis has redefined the nature of fantasy, adding richness beauty, and dimension... In our times, every fantasy realm must be measured in comparison with Narnia.
Lloyd Alexander
There's a peculiar thing that happens every time you get clean. You go through this sensation of rebirth. There's something intoxicating about the process of the comeback, and that becomes an element in the whole cycle of addiction. Once you've beaten yourself down with cocaine and heroin, and you manage to stop and walk out of the muck you begin to get your mind and body strong and reconnect with your spirit. The oppressive feeling of being a slave to the drugs is still in your mind, so by comparison, you feel phenomenal. You're happy to be alive, smelling the air and seeing the beauty around you...You have a choice of what to do. So you experience this jolt of joy that you're not where you came from and that in and of itself is a tricky thing to stop doing. Somewhere in the back of your mind, you know that every time you get clean, you'll have this great new feeling. Cut to: a year later, when you've forgotten how bad it was and you don't have that pink-cloud sensation of being newly sober. When I look back, I see why these vicious cycles can develop in someone who's been sober for a long time and then relapses and doesn't want to stay out there using, doesn't want to die, but isn't taking the full measure to get well again. There's a concept in recovery that says 'Half-measures avail us nothing.' When you have a disease, you can't take half the process of getting well and think you're going to get half well; you do half the process of getting well, you're not going to get well at all, and you'll go back to where you came from. Without a thorough transformation, you're the same guy, and the same guy does the same shit. I kept half-measuring it, thinking I was going to at least get something out of this deal, and I kept getting nothing out of it
Anthony Kiedis (Scar Tissue)
Happiness is like time and space--we make and measure it ourselves; it is a fancy--as big, as little, as you please; just a thing of contrasts and comparisons, like health or strength or beauty or any other good--that wouldn't even be noticed but for sad personal experience of its opposite!--or its greater!
George du Maurier
I have lost my spark, I'm told, and should seek to rekindle it.  Respecting the messenger, I wonder if this is true.  I feel as if my spark endures, but having opened up to the world so bright, perhaps it no longer shines by comparison.  So, without a word, I slip back into seclusion to nurture my beautiful inner glow.
Richelle E. Goodrich (Smile Anyway: Quotes, Verse, and Grumblings for Every Day of the Year)
There's no shame compared to being beautiful with nothing in your brain, an ugly devil with wits is much better that the former.
Michael Bassey Johnson
She was beautiful, without comparison, but she exuded and icy and emotionless aura. She was as hard and as cold as ice and it was difficult to tell whether she was pleased or angry.
Jin Yong (射雕英雄传(全四册))
Cassidy brings something beautiful to me from the outside. Aimee brings something beautiful up from the depths of my insides. "I can't dance like Cassidy," she says. "Yeah, but you dance like Aimee. And that's perfect.
Tim Tharp (The Spectacular Now)
We ought to compliment and not to compete with one another.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
You can make a difference, wherever you are. It begins with a decision and defined purpose.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
There is no need for comparison. Be happy with yourself and find satisfaction in your work.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
The opinions of others are their perceptions. Define your life!
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
The tendency of the human mind is to see the world with a ‘dualistic’ view that describes everything through comparisons: good and bad, pain and happiness, beauty and ugliness, rich and poor.
Gyalwa Dokhampa (The Restful Mind)
Beauty is the only human aspect which cannot be captured on any canvas howsoever hard an artist tries. At the most, the undaunted artist can replicate the beauty on paper but what is a replica in comparison to the original! The humbling resemblance can only be respected, not truly adored. Beauty cannot be imprisoned in the lens of a camera. The images of beauty are a moment of its essence. Beauty cannot be displayed to evoke pleasure for all on a cinema screen. Those are just its imprints, mere illusions of its existence. Beauty cannot be described by words; it cannot be written or read about. There are no suitable words in all the languages of the world, ancient or modern to hold it between a paper and a pen or a script and an eye. Beauty can only be experienced from far, its delightful aroma can only be tasted through one’s eyes and its pleasurable sight can only be felt from the soul. Beauty can only be best described at its origin through a befuddling silence, the kind that leaves one almost on the verge of a pleasurable death, just because one chooses beauty over life. There is nothing in this world to hold something so pure, so divine except a loving heart. And it is the only manner through which love recognises love; the language of love has no alphabet, no words.
Faraaz Kazi
How I should despise such a thing if I were a man. What a nose she has! what a chin! what a neck! Then her eyes--and the worst kissing lips in the universe.
John Vanbrugh (Provoked Wife (Regents Restoration Drama))
They were no words. There was hardly even a tune. But it was, beyond comparison, the most beautiful noise he had ever heard. It was so beautiful he could hardly bear it.
C.S. Lewis (The Magician’s Nephew (Chronicles of Narnia, #6))
For Marianne, however—in spite of his incivility in surviving her loss—he always retained that decided regard which interested him in every thing that befell her, and made her his secret standard of perfection in woman;—and many a rising beauty would be slighted by him in after-days as bearing no comparison with Mrs. Brandon.
Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
The sun hitched up her trousers and soldiered on up into the sky. September squinted at it and wondered if the sun here was different than the sun in Nebraska. It seemed gentler, more golden, deeper. The shadows it cast seemed more profound. But September could not be sure. When one is traveling, everything looks brighter and lovelier. That does not mean that it is brighter and lovelier; it just means that sweet, kindly home suffers in comparison to tarted-up foreign places with all their jewels on.
Catherynne M. Valente (The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Fairyland, #1))
And as the light flickered over it in bands, I had the queasy sense of my own life, in comparison, as a patternless and transient burst of energy, a fizz of biological static just as random as the street lamps flashing past.
Donna Tartt
I don't think you're a pervert at all, Sam. If you were a member of my generation you could cum in a special jar over a period of months and then post pictures of the jar online. A foot fetish..." She took a deep breath. "A foot fetish is like a beautiful meadow in comparison. A foot fetish is Pachelbel's Canon.
Patricia Lockwood (No One Is Talking About This)
Never," enjoins a women's magazine, "mention the size of his [penis] in public...and never, ever let him know that anyone else knows or you may find it shrivels up and disappears, serving you right." That quotation acknowledges that critical sexual comparison is a direct anaphrodisiac when applied to men; either we do not yet recognize that it has exactly the same effect on women, or we do not care, or we understand on some level that right now that effect is desirable and appropriate. A man is unlikely to be brought within earshot of women as they judge men's appearance, height, muscle tone, sexual technique, penis size, personal grooming, or taste in clothes--all of which we do. The fact is that women are able to view men just as men view women, as objects for sexual and aesthetic evaluation; we too are effortlessly able to choose the male "ideal" from a lineup and if we could have male beauty as well as everything else, most of us would not say no. But so what? Given all that, women make the choice, by and large, to take men as human beings first.
Naomi Wolf (The Beauty Myth)
When you begin to walk your own journey, to have your own unique conversation, you will naturally stop feeling envious of others. Not because you’ll realize your desires are different from theirs, but because they are so similar. You’ll discover the difference between doing well and pretending to do well, between being happy and pretending to be happy, between healthy relationships and staged ones. You’ll see just how many obstacles lie on any path. You’ll realize that it takes the same amount of effort to work on building up the quality of the conversations in your life as it does to broadcast to the public, constantly, that those conversations are already perfect. You can either build up the mask or build up the authentic self. And you, brave and beautiful you, will make the right choice eventually. Be it now or on your deathbed. We all realize soon enough.
Vironika Tugaleva
I thought I knew what love was, that I understood its depth, its importance, its beauty and the happiness and the heartache it brings.” He huffed—a small sound of amusement. “I wasn’t even close. When I look at you, I see radiance. I know pure happiness. Everything else pales in comparison. The thought of living a single moment without you tears me apart inside. Just when I think I love you as much as possible, you open your heart to me a little more, and my love expands—grows—wanting to fill every emptiness inside you.
Olivia Cunning (Sinners at the Altar (Sinners on Tour, #6))
Get too used to glorious sunsets and it is easy to blame the sun for stealing the clouds' glory--but withhold the sun and there is nothing to see.
Soman Chainani (Beasts and Beauty)
You know, lobsters just get bigger and bigger without aging and, if there were no other threats to them, they'd live forever. Sea sponges too, Mama." I call her what I used to when I was a child. "They stay beautiful and bright and they live for thousands of years. That's us.
Claire Kohda (Woman, Eating)
You would realize that all the cookies were formed in the same mold. And what is more, Sophie, you are now seized by the irresistible desire to see this mold. Because clearly, the mold itself must be utter perfection - and in a sense, more beautiful - in comparison with these crude copies.
Jostein Gaarder (Sophie’s World)
The mountain panorama was the backdrop to every photo taken here, the backdrop to everything. At first Ursula had thought it beautiful, now she was beginning to find its magnificence oppressive. The great icy crags and the rushing waterfalls, the endless pine trees--nature and myth fused to form the Germanic sublimated soul. German Romanticism, it seemed to Ursula, was write large and mystical, the English Lakes seemed tame by comparison. And the English soul, if it resided anywhere, was surely in some unheroic back garden--a patch of lawn, a bed of roses, a row of runner beans.
Kate Atkinson (Life After Life (Todd Family, #1))
The so-called scale of "good, better and best" is a social construct, and often it does more harm to the mind's growth, than good. If you love something, you just do it, without thinking about being good, or better, or best. Such expectation-less action gives rise to the most beautiful of results.
Abhijit Naskar
Dear YOU, don’t compare yourself to ANYONE. Your Unique Self is empowered, powerful, and unstoppable! Your uniqueness is what makes you incomparable! Don’t underestimate the beauty of just being YOU.
Stephanie Lahart
Hush!’ said the Cabby. They all listened. In the darkness something was happening at last. A voice had begun to sing. It was very far away and Digory found it hard to decide from what direction it was coming. Sometimes it seemed to come from all directions at once. Sometimes he almost thought it was coming out of the earth beneath them. Its lower notes were deep enough to be the voice of the earth herself. There were no words. There was hardly even a tune. But it was, beyond comparison, the most beautiful noise he had ever heard. It was so beautiful he could hardly bear it… ‘Gawd!’ said the Cabby. ‘Ain’t it lovely?’ Then two wonders happened at the same moment. One was that the voice was suddenly joined by other voices; more voices than you could possibly count. They were in harmony with it, but far higher up the scale: cold, tingling, silvery voices. The second wonder was that the blackness overhead, all at once, was blazing with stars. They didn’t come out gently one by one, as they do on a summer evening. One moment there had been nothing but darkness; next moment a thousand, thousand points of light leaped out – single stars, constellations, and planets, brighter and bigger than any in our world. There were no clouds. The new stars and the new voices began at exactly the same time. If you had seen and heard it , as Digory did, you would have felt quite certain that it was the stars themselves who were singing, and that it was the First Voice, the deep one, which had made them appear and made them sing. ‘Glory be!’ said the Cabby. ‘I’d ha’ been a better man all my life if I’d known there were things like this.’ …Far away, and down near the horizon, the sky began to turn grey. A light wind, very fresh, began to stir. The sky, in that one place, grew slowly and steadily paler. You could see shapes of hills standing up dark against it. All the time the Voice went on singing…The eastern sky changed from white to pink and from pink to gold. The Voice rose and rose, till all the air was shaking with it. And just as it swelled to the mightiest and most glorious sound it had yet produced, the sun arose. Digory had never seen such a sun…You could imagine that it laughed for joy as it came up. And as its beams shot across the land the travellers could see for the first time what sort of place they were in. It was a valley through which a broad, swift river wound its way, flowing eastward towards the sun. Southward there were mountains, northward there were lower hills. But it was a valley of mere earth, rock and water; there was not a tree, not a bush, not a blade of grass to be seen. The earth was of many colours: they were fresh, hot and vivid. They made you feel excited; until you saw the Singer himself, and then you forgot everything else. It was a Lion. Huge, shaggy, and bright it stood facing the risen sun. Its mouth was wide open in song and it was about three hundred yards away.
C.S. Lewis (The Magician’s Nephew (Chronicles of Narnia, #6))
Leave this touching and clawing. Let him be to me a spirit. A message, a thought, a sincerity, a glance from him, I want, but not news nor pottage. I can get politics, and chat, and neighborly conveniences from cheaper companions. Should not the society of my friend be to me poetic, pure, universal, and great as nature itself? Ought I to feel that our tie is profane in comparison with yonder bar of cloud that sleeps on the horizon, or that clump of waving grass that divides the brook? Let us not vilify, bur raise it to that standard. That great, defying eye, that scornful beauty of his mien and action, do not pique yourself on reducing, but rather fortify and enhance.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
But Lucy had been alone too much of her life, and in her loneliness she had constructed a vision of what a perfect relationship would look like. Love, in her imagination, was so dazzling, so tender and unconditional, that anything human seemed impossibly thin by comparison. Lucy's loneliness was breathtaking in its enormity...she was trapped in a room full of mirrors, and every direction she looked in she saw herself, her face, her loneliness. She couldn't see that no one else was perfect either, and that so much of love was the work of it. She had worked on everything else. Love would have to be charmed.
Ann Patchett (Truth & Beauty)
Our fine arts were developed, their types and uses were established, in times very different from the present, by men whose power of action upon things was insignificant in comparison with ours. But the amazing growth of our techniques, the adaptability and precision they have attained, the ideas and habits they are creating, make it a certainty that profound changes are impending in the ancient craft of the Beautiful. In all the arts there is a physical component which can no longer be considered or treated as it used to be, which cannot remain unaffected by our modern knowledge and power. For the last twenty years neither matter nor space nor time has been what it was from time immemorial. We must expect great innovations to transform the entire technique of the arts, thereby affecting artistic invention itself and perhaps even bringing about an amazing change in our very notion of art.
Paul Valéry
How little is requisite to supply the necessities of nature? And in a view to pleasure, what comparison between the unbought satisfaction of conversation, society, study, even health and the common beauties of nature, but above all the peaceful reflection on one's own conduct: What comparison, I say, between these, and the feverish, empty amusements of luxury and expense? These natural pleasures, indeed, are really without price; both because they are below all price in their attainment, an above it in their enjoyment.
David Hume (An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals)
Everyday we are all presented with the same primary colors(red, yellow, blue), some mix their colors to get secondary and tertiary colors to paint their life's portrait beautifully, others sit and complain that they don't have enough colors. It's not the number of colors on your pallet that does the magic, it's what you do with what you have. Go ahead and paint anyway. It's your life's portrait.
Bernard Kelvin Clive
Fear is an unavoidable element of the mortal condition. Creation in all its ravishing beauty, with its infinite baroque embellishments and subtle charms, with all the wonders that it offers from both the Maker and the made, with all its velvet mystery and with all the joy we receive from those we love here, so enchants us lack we lack the imagination, less than the faith, to envision an even more dazzling world beyond, and therefore even if we believe, we cling tenaciously to this existence, to sweet familiarity, fearful that all conceivable paradises will prove wanting by comparison.
Dean Koontz (One Door Away from Heaven)
Soon, what was tedious was everything. 'Beautiful things, they're so tedious! Paintings, they're enough to drive you mad...How right you are, it's so tedious, writing letters!' In the end it was life itself that she declared to us was a bore, without one quite knowing from where she was taking her term of comparison.
Marcel Proust (Sodom and Gomorrah)
ONCE UPON A time there was a king who had three beautiful daughters. As he grew old, he began to wonder which should inherit the kingdom, since none had married and he had no heir. The king decided to ask his daughters to demonstrate their love for him. To the eldest princess he said, “Tell me how you love me.” She loved him as much as all the treasure in the kingdom. To the middle princess he said, “Tell me how you love me.” She loved him with the strength of iron. To the youngest princess he said, “Tell me how you love me.” This youngest princess thought for a long time before answering. Finally she said she loved him as meat loves salt. “Then you do not love me at all,” the king said. He threw his daughter from the castle and had the bridge drawn up behind her so that she could not return. Now, this youngest princess goes into the forest with not so much as a coat or a loaf of bread. She wanders through a hard winter, taking shelter beneath trees. She arrives at an inn and gets hired as assistant to the cook. As the days and weeks go by, the princess learns the ways of the kitchen. Eventually she surpasses her employer in skill and her food is known throughout the land. Years pass, and the eldest princess comes to be married. For the festivities, the cook from the inn makes the wedding meal. Finally a large roast pig is served. It is the king’s favorite dish, but this time it has been cooked with no salt. The king tastes it. Tastes it again. “Who would dare to serve such an ill-cooked roast at the future queen’s wedding?” he cries. The princess-cook appears before her father, but she is so changed he does not recognize her. “I would not serve you salt, Your Majesty,” she explains. “For did you not exile your youngest daughter for saying that it was of value?” At her words, the king realizes that not only is she his daughter—she is, in fact, the daughter who loves him best. And what then? The eldest daughter and the middle sister have been living with the king all this time. One has been in favor one week, the other the next. They have been driven apart by their father’s constant comparisons. Now the youngest has returned, the king yanks the kingdom from his eldest, who has just been married. She is not to be queen after all. The elder sisters rage. At first, the youngest basks in fatherly love. Before long, however, she realizes the king is demented and power-mad. She is to be queen, but she is also stuck tending to a crazy old tyrant for the rest of her days. She will not leave him, no matter how sick he becomes. Does she stay because she loves him as meat loves salt? Or does she stay because he has now promised her the kingdom? It is hard for her to tell the difference.
E. Lockhart (We Were Liars)
Do you know what the best thing about getting my sight back will be?” he asked softly. “No,” she replied, all of the bravado gone from her voice. Straightening, he took one step toward her, then another. She refused to give ground until he was almost on top of her. Feeling the air shift as she retreated, he clumsily flanked her until their positions were reversed and she was the one backing toward the door. “Some might believe it would be the joy of watching the sun dip below a lavender horizon at the end of a perfect summer day.” When he heard her back come up against the door, he splayed one palm against the thick mahogany behind her. “Others might judge it to be perusing the velvety petals of a ruby red rose…”—leaning forward until he felt the warm tickle of her breath against his face, he deepened his voice to a smoky caress—“or gazing tenderly into the eyes of a beautiful woman. But I can promise you, Miss Wickersham, that all of those pleasures will pale in comparison to the sheer unmitigated joy of being rid of you.
Teresa Medeiros (Yours Until Dawn)
By assembling the mosaic image of our own mosaic of “truth” (our own version of the “truth”) from our accumulated knowledge and through comparisons with those of others, we shall not be free and do not get closer to Truth. We have only created a beautiful (or not so beautiful) spiritual mask, and behind it the Ego grins at us and the world created by itself.
Frank Wanderer
I don’t need to see you to know how breathtakingly beautiful you are, Sophie.” he breathes into my ear “The sun, the stars, this place, it all pales in comparison to you.
K.A. Hobbs (Doubt (Connected, #1))
The illusion of beauty - the rule of comparisons.
Lesley Pearse
If beauty is relative, then any and everything when compared to the beauty of God is absolutely hideous.
Criss Jami (Healology)
Do not argue about what is beautiful or ugly, exalted or base, as most comparisons only lead to strife and seed of hostility among people.
Tomáš Gavlas (Karlaz: The Way of Freedom)
Sometimes the fake stuff is ugly, sometimes it’s beautiful, but it always pales in comparison to the real thing. I mean, how can something fake ever compare to what’s genuine?
Susan L. Tuttle (Love You Truly)
The beauty all around you is insignificant in comparison to the beauty within you.
Matshona Dhliwayo
We descend upon you and all things—we arrest you all; We realize the soul only by you, you faithful solids and fluids; Through you color, form, location, sublimity, ideality; Through you every proof, comparison, and all the suggestions and determinations of ourselves. You have waited, you always wait, you dumb, beautiful ministers! you novices! We receive you with free sense at last, and are insatiate henceforward; Not you any more shall be able to foil us, or withhold yourselves from us; We use you, and do not cast you aside—we plant you permanently within us; "We fathom you not—we love you—there is perfection in you also; You furnish your parts toward eternity; Great or small, you furnish your parts toward the soul.
Walt Whitman (Leaves of Grass)
Just like scars that form over cuts or burns once you’ve healed, these previously vulnerable places become your toughest. You are stronger, not in spite of your pain, but because of it.
Keryl Pesce (Hello Beautiful: Break free from the chains of regret, comparison, and self-doubt, and discover the freedom, power, and beauty of being the real you.)
That night is going to pale in comparison to today, precious. Today, I’m going to make love to you sweetly and tenderly. Then I’m going to fuck you so long and hard, your beautiful pussy is going to be raw. You won’t be able to stand, let alone walk. After that, I’m going to go down on you until you’re shivering and coming all over my tongue. And then we’ll do it all again.
Laurelin Paige (The Fixed Trilogy (Fixed, #1-3))
Who is he?” Eleanor lowered her voice, the name rolling off her tongue like a dark secret. “Dante Berlin.” I laughed. “Dante? Like the Dante who wrote the Inferno? Did he pick that name just to cultivate his ‘dark and mysterious’ persona?” Eleanor shook her head in disapproval. “Just wait till you see him. You won’t be laughing then.” I rolled my eyes. “I bet his real name is something boring like Eugene or Dwayne.” I expected Eleanor to laugh or say something in return, but instead she gave me a concerned look. I ignored it. “He sounds like a snob to me. I bet he’s one of those guys who know they’re good-looking. He probably hasn’t even read the Inferno. It’s easy to pretend you’re smart when you don’t to anyone.” Eleanor still didn’t respond. “Shh . . .” she muttered under her breath. But before I could say “What?” I heard a cough behind me. Oh God, I thought to myself, and slowly turned around. “Hi,” he said with a half grin that seemed to be mocking me. And that’s how I met Dante Berlin. So how do you describe someone who leaves you speechless? He was beautiful. Not Monet beautiful or white sandy beach beautiful or even Grand Canyon beautiful. It was both more overwhelming and more delicate. Like gazing into the night sky and feeling incredibly small in comparison. Like holding a shell in your hand and wondering how nature was able to make something so complex yet to perfect: his eyes, dark and pensive; his messy brown hair tucked behind one ear; his arms, strong and lean beneath the cuffs of his collared shirt. I wanted to say something witty or charming, but all I could muster up was a timid “Hi.” He studied me with what looked like a mix of disgust and curiosity. “You must be Eugene,” I said. “I am.” He smiled, then leaned in and added, “I hope I can trust you to keep my true identity a secret. A name like Eugene could do real damage to my mysterious persona.” I blushed at the sound of my words coming from his lips. He didn’t seem anything like the person Eleanor had described. “And you are—” “Renee,” I interjected. “I was going to say, ‘in my seat,’ but Renee will do.” My face went red. “Oh, right. Sorry.” “Renee like the philosopher Rene Descartes? How esoteric of you. No wonder you think you know everything. You probably picked that name just to cultivate your overly analytical persona.” I glared at him. I knew he was just dishing back my own insults, but it still stung. “Well, it was nice meeting you,” I said curtly, and pushed past him before he could respond, waving a quick good-bye to Eleanor, who looked too stunned to move. I turned and walked to the last row, using all of my self-control to resist looking back.
Yvonne Woon (Dead Beautiful (Dead Beautiful, #1))
Marya and Dimitri had given Sasha and Lev the simplicity—the beautiful normality—that they themselves had been denied. Dimitri had given Lev freedom from a life he’d never wanted. He’d given him choices. Last words would have been paltry in comparison to this: the Antonova witch who kissed him goodbye with the words let me go, because she would be back. She would be back, and she would be his.
Olivie Blake (One for My Enemy)
If beautiful flowers were edible, you would eat them stale because you would use fresh flowers for decoration and display. Life is like a rare beautiful flower which is edible. We spend most of it in displaying to others.
Shunya
she could still moralize over every morning visit; and as she was no longer mortified by comparisons between her sisters' beauty and her own, it was suspected by her father that she submitted to the change without much reluctance.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
I’ve laid down ten statistical commandments in this book. First, we should learn to stop and notice our emotional reaction to a claim, rather than accepting or rejecting it because of how it makes us feel. Second, we should look for ways to combine the “bird’s eye” statistical perspective with the “worm’s eye” view from personal experience. Third, we should look at the labels on the data we’re being given, and ask if we understand what’s really being described. Fourth, we should look for comparisons and context, putting any claim into perspective. Fifth, we should look behind the statistics at where they came from—and what other data might have vanished into obscurity. Sixth, we should ask who is missing from the data we’re being shown, and whether our conclusions might differ if they were included. Seventh, we should ask tough questions about algorithms and the big datasets that drive them, recognizing that without intelligent openness they cannot be trusted. Eighth, we should pay more attention to the bedrock of official statistics—and the sometimes heroic statisticians who protect it. Ninth, we should look under the surface of any beautiful graph or chart. And tenth, we should keep an open mind, asking how we might be mistaken, and whether the facts have changed.
Tim Harford (The Data Detective: Ten Easy Rules to Make Sense of Statistics)
Key Rabbit, allow me to bore you with a comparison of your wife and a beautiful woman," I said. "In the morning a beauty must lie in bed for three or four hours gathering strength for another mighty battle with Nature. Then, after being bathed and toweled by her maids, she loosens her hair in the Cascade of Teasing Willows Style, paints her eyebrows in the Distant Mountain Range Style, anoints herself with the Nine Bends of the River Diving-water Perfume, applies rouge, mascara, and eye shadow, and covers the whole works with a good two inches of the Powder of the Nonchalant Approach. Then she dresses in a plum-blossom patterned tunic with matching skirt and stockings, adds four or five pounds of jewelry, looks in the mirror for any visible sign of humanity and is relieved to find none, checks her makeup to be sure that it has hardened into an immovable mask, sprinkles herself with the Hundred Ingredients Perfume of the Heavenly Spirits who Descended in the Rain Shower, and minces with tiny steps toward the new day. Which, like any other day, will consist of gossip and giggles.
Barry Hughart (Bridge of Birds (The Chronicles of Master Li and Number Ten Ox, #1))
We got out of our car in Agra to be faced with 150 people and instantly knew that we were their target. We were white (we still are) and wealthy (in comparison). And these people are masters at the art of distraction. You’ll spot the one approaching from the left, but not the imminent threat from the right. And if you say no they have ways of making you say yes. We were greeted with, “Give me money” by street urchins, “Give me 20 rupees,” by a man in a ‘locker room’ looking after our camera equipment, and graceful, exquisite and amused smiles by some of the most magnificently beautiful women in the world. Ladies with coconut oil in their hair, eyes the colour of artisan’s gold, and spirituality in their hearts. And everywhere we went we were greeted with the Añjali Mudrā gesture and the word Namaste, indicating 'I bow to the divine in you.
Karl Wiggins (Wrong Planet - Searching for your Tribe)
Her degree at least that of Princess, for she is my Queen and mistress; her beauty superhuman, for in her are realized all the impossible and chimerical attributes of beauty which poets give to their ladies; that her hair is gold; her forehead the Elysian fields; her eyebrows rainbows; her eyes suns; her cheeks roses; her lips coral; her teeth pearls; her neck alabaster; her breast marble; her hands ivory; she is white as snow; and those parts which modesty has veiled from human sight are such, I think and believe, that discreet reflection can extol them, but make no comparison.
Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (Don Quijote de la Mancha)
I was exceedingly affected, says he, upon the occasion. But was ashamed to be surprised by her into such a fit of unmanly weakness-so ashamed that I was resolved to subdue it at the instant, and guard against the like for the future. Yet, at that moment, I more than half regretted that I could not permit her to enjoy a triumph which she so well deserved to glory in-her youth, her beauty, her artless innocence, and her manner, equally beyond comparison or description. But her indifference, Belford!-That she could resolve to sacrifice me to the malice of my enemies; and carry on the design in so clandestine a manner-yet love her, as I do, to frenzy!-revere her, as I do, to adoration!-These were the recollections with which I fortified my recreant heart against her-Yet, after all, if she persevere, she must conquer!-Coward, as she has made me, that never was a coward before!
Samuel Richardson (Clarissa Harlowe or the History of a Young Lady, V1 (of 9))
Insecure and unfulfilled people cannot help but be jealous. Only inner security and individual fulfilment as a person will reduce jealousy until, one day, it disappears. It will be replaced by a calm confidence, a steady happiness, a strong resilience, and an interesting, beautiful life. If we keep our eyes on our own path in life, we will lose the egotistical pride which frequently accompanies success and also makes us vulnerable to a fall. When things go well, we will be grateful. When they do not, we will be patient. We will accept success with ease and perspective, and failure with tolerance.
Donna Goddard (Love's Longing (Love and Devotion, #3))
There are times I look around and it seems the world is so ugly, and I just can't seem to see the earth’s natural beauty anymore, but when my eyes look up to the ethereal sky, I am reminded of the major contrast between Gods brilliant creations and human beings man-made imitations, and there is no comparison.
Delano Johnson
Few things are harder to visualise than that a cold snowbound landscape, so marrow-chillingly quiet and lifeless, will, within mere months, be green and lush and warm, quivering with all manner of life, from birds warbling and flying through the trees to swarms of insects hanging in scattered clusters in the air. Nothing in the winter landscape presages the scent of sun-warmed heather and moss, trees bursting with sap and thawed lakes ready for spring and summer, nothing presages the feeling of freedom that can come over you when the only white that can be seen is the clouds gliding across the blue sky above the blue water of the rivers gently flowing down to the sea, the perfect, smooth, cool surface, broken now and then by rocks, rapids and bathing bodies. It is not there, it does not exist, everything is white and still, and if the silence is broken it is by a cold wind or a lone crow caw-cawing. But it is coming ... it is coming... One evening in March the snow turns to rain, and the piles of snow collapse. One morning in April there are buds on the trees, and there is a trace of green in the yellow grass. Daffodils appear, white and blue anemones too. Then the warm air stands like a pillar among the trees on the slopes. On sunny inclines buds have burst, here and there cherry trees are in blossom. If you are sixteen years old all of this makes an impression, all of this leaves its mark, for this is the first spring you know is spring, with all your sense you know this is spring, and it is the last, for all coming springs pale in comparison with your first. If, moreover, you are in love, well, then ... then it is merely a question of holding on. Holding on to all the happiness, all the beauty, all the future that resides in everything.
Karl Ove Knausgård (Min kamp 2 (Min kamp, #2))
The principles of every passion, and of every sentiment, is in every man; and when touched properly, they rise to life, and warm the heart, and convey that satisfaction, by which a work of genius is distinguished from the adulterate° beauties of a capricious wit and fancy. And if this observation be true, with regard to all the liberal arts, it must be peculiarly so, with regard to eloquence; which, being merely calculated for the public, and for men of the world, cannot, with any pretence of reason, appeal from the people to more refined judges; but must submit to the public verdict, without reserve or limitation. Whoever, upon comparison, is deemed by a common audience the greatest orator, ought most certainly to be pronounced such, by men of science and erudition.
David Hume (Essays: Moral, Political, and Literary (NONE))
Performance, by comparison, had always felt more authentic. Performance was alive, so performance had to die. A piece or a song or a play was designed to last for only as long as it took to perform, to begin and end and echo in the mind. But he had to admit there was something noble, too, in the pursuit of permanence, and something beautiful and sad about how much art had been lost and forgotten by time.
Kate Racculia (Tuesday Mooney Talks To Ghosts)
To be aware is an extraordinary state of mind to be aware of your surroundings, of the trees, the bird that is singing, the sunset behind you. to be aware of the beauty of the land, the ripple of the water, - just to be aware, choiclessly. Please do this as you are going along. Listen to these birds; do not name, do not recognize the species, but just listen to the sound. Listen to the mouvement of your own thoughts; do not control them, do not shape them,do not say:" this is right, that is wrong" Just move with them. That is awareness in which there is no choice, no condemnation, no judgement, no comparison or interpretation, only mere observation. That makes your mind highly sensitive. The moment you go name, you have gone back, your mind becomes dull, because that is what you are used to. J. Krishnamurti
J. Krishnamurti
The only way you are going to experience the beauty of life is to stop obsessing about what’s wrong with it. Nobody is responsible for your happiness or perception of the world… but you. Life is funny like that; just when you think your life is at the center of the Universe, someone comes along and reminds you that your problems are minuscule in comparison and puts your entire existence back into perspective.
Brenden M Dilley (Still Breathin': The Wisdom and Teachings of a Perfectly Flawed Man)
In that moment, he looks like a da Vinci portrait; his plump, white face, his soft-looking ginger hair, his gentle-looking eyes. In da Vinci's portraits of people pointing to heaven, his models, no matter their age, always look almost cherub-like. Ben stays pointing for a while, and then the illusion is broken. "Yeah, thanks," I say. Ben grins, and his eyes turn into little slits with crow's-feet on either side that haven't yet become permanent folds in his face; I can tell they will, though. Over several years, Ben's skin will form wrinkles that will act like physical reminders of his personality and nature. Meanwhile, I'll remain looking the same; my face will give no clue to the kind of person I am. "That man looks kind," people will say when they see Ben's face when he is old. When the same people see me, they'll say nothing.
Claire Kohda (Woman, Eating)
Superstition [is] cowardice in the face of the Divine,’ wrote Theophrastus, who lived during the founding of the Library of Alexandria. We inhabit a universe where atoms are made in the centers of stars; where each second a thousand suns are born; where life is sparked by sunlight and lightning in the airs and waters of youthful planets; where the raw material for biological evolution is sometimes made by the explosion of a star halfway across the Milky Way; where a thing as beautiful as a galaxy is formed a hundred billion times - a Cosmos of quasars and quarks, snowflakes and fireflies, where there may be black holes and other universes and extraterrestrial civilizations whose radio messages are at this moment reaching the Earth. How pallid by comparison are the pretensions of superstition and pseudoscience; how important it is for us to pursue and understand science, that characteristically human endeavor.
Anonymous
Martha’s Vineyard had fossil deposits one million centuries old. The northern reach of Cape Cod, however, on which my house sat, the land I inhabited—that long curving spit of shrub and dune that curves in upon itself in a spiral at the tip of the Cape—had only been formed by wind and sea over the last ten thousand years. That cannot amount to more than a night of geological time. Perhaps this is why Provincetown is so beautiful. Conceived at night (for one would swear it was created in the course of one dark storm) its sand flats still glistened in the dawn with the moist primeval innocence of land exposing itself to the sun for the first time. Decade after decade, artists came to paint the light of Provincetown, and comparisons were made to the lagoons of Venice and the marshes of Holland, but then the summer ended and most of the painters left, and the long dingy undergarment of the gray New England winter, gray as the spirit of my mood, came down to visit. One remembered then that the land was only ten thousand years old, and one’s ghosts had no roots. We did not have old Martha’s Vineyard’s fossil remains to subdue each spirit, no, there was nothing to domicile our specters who careened with the wind down the two long streets of our town which curved together around the bay like two spinsters on their promenade to church.   NORMAN MAILER, from Tough Guys Don’t Dance
Michael Cunningham (Land's End: A Walk in Provincetown)
Today I saw the most beautiful girl in the world... She is the most beautiful girl in the world, Bartolomeo Scappi thought. Never have I seen a woman so perfect, so angelic, so impossible for me to attain. "Bella," he breathed when air filled his lungs once again. Even Ippolito d'Este's presence at the dining table could not mar his giddiness. The girl was so beautiful she glowed like a painting of the Madonna, making everyone around her seem colorless in comparison. She was clearly a principessa of a grand house, sitting between Ippolito's father, the Duke of Ferrara, on one side, and a woman most likely to be her mother on the right. Bartolomeo sought to memorize every feature of this goddess with golden hair that shone with glints of red in the last rays of the day's sunlight. Her eyes were dark chestnut, rich and deep, while her lips were pink, like the inside of a seashell. Her hair was braided, but much of it flowed loose over shoulders, teasing her pale skin. She wore a dress of red, with sleeves billowing white. Rubies and pearls spilled across her delicate collarbone toward her beautiful breasts. Scappi painted her picture in his mind and stored it deep within the frame of his heart. That evening, while staring at the sky, his thoughts lost in the memory of the signorina, a shooting star passed across his vision. "Stella," he said under his breath. I will call her Stella. My shining star.
Crystal King (The Chef's Secret)
A horn sounded in the distance and as Stella turned towards the sea to look at the enormous ship that had produced the sound, her gaze was locked on a scene so beautiful that the picturesque beach paled in comparison. A lifeguard was emerging from the water, his orange trunks stuck to his legs and water dripping from all over him. He shook his head to get rid of some of the water in his hair and Stella felt as if everything started developing in slow motion – tiny drops of water slid from his neck down his broad chest and muscular arms, along a weaving tattoo design on his right shoulder, and continued downwards towards his chest and washboard stomach, finally getting lost in his trunks’ waist. A part of another tattoo was peeking over his trunks on his left hip, the other part hidden under them. His golden, tanned skin glistened in the sun and he moved with such grace that a panther would be deemed clumsy next to him. It was a total Baywatch moment.
Teodora Kostova (In a Heartbeat (Heartbeat, #1))
That day in Chartres they had passed through town and watched women kneeling at the edge of the water, pounding clothes against a flat, wooden board. Yves had watched them for a long time. They had wandered up and down the old crooked streets, in the hot sun; Eric remembered a lizard darting across a wall; and everywhere the cathedral pursued them. It is impossible to be in that town and not be in the shadow of those great towers; impossible to find oneself on those plains and not be troubled by that cruel and elegant, dogmatic and pagan presence. The town was full of tourists, with their cameras, their three-quarter coats, bright flowered dresses and shirts, their children, college insignia, Panama hats, sharp, nasal cries, and automobiles crawling like monstrous gleaming bugs over the laming, cobblestoned streets. Tourist buses, from Holland, from Denmark, from Germany, stood in the square before the cathedral. Tow-haired boys and girls, earnest, carrying knapsacks, wearing khaki-colored shorts, with heavy buttocks and thighs, wandered dully through the town. American soldiers, some in uniform, some in civilian clothes, leaned over bridges, entered bistros in strident, uneasy, smiling packs, circled displays of colored post cards, and picked up meretricious mementos, of a sacred character. All of the beauty of the town, all the energy of the plains, and all the power and dignity of the people seemed to have been sucked out of them by the cathedral. It was as though the cathedral demanded, and received, a perpetual, living sacrifice. It towered over the town, more like an affliction than a blessing, and made everything seem, by comparison with itself, wretched and makeshift indeed. The houses in which the people lived did not suggest shelter, or safety. The great shadow which lay over them revealed them as mere doomed bits of wood and mineral, set down in the path of a hurricane which, presently, would blow them into eternity. And this shadow lay heavy on the people, too. They seemed stunted and misshapen; the only color in their faces suggested too much bad wine and too little sun; even the children seemed to have been hatched in a cellar. It was a town like some towns in the American South, frozen in its history as Lot's wife was trapped in salt, and doomed, therefore, as its history, that overwhelming, omnipresent gift of God, could not be questioned, to be the property of the gray, unquestioning mediocre.
James Baldwin (Another Country)
His intended probably wouldn't appreciate the comparison, but Thorn had the notion that she was like a rescued hound, one that would adoringly follow her new master in return for some kindness. That was absurd, given that she was as beautiful as a wild rose, with hair like a Botticelli angel. By all rights, she should be arrogantly aware of her dominion over men. But instead she had a desperate look about her eyes, as if she needed saving. It was a fair trade, in his estimation. Her beauty in return for his protection.
Eloisa James (Three Weeks With Lady X (Desperate Duchesses, #7; Desperate Duchesses by the Numbers, #1))
It’s… You’ve been all over the world. Been in perilous places, taken risks that stop my breath. In comparison to all that, will what we might have…will I be enough?” “Sweetheart…” “You said my world, this world, is colorless, remember?” It almost made him laugh. “Honey-pie, when I’m with you, I think of a thousand colors. Your beautiful silvery eyes, your lemon-yellow swimsuit, your pink sunburn, your pumpkin shoes. You’re…you’re my rainbow.” His darling, serious, wonderful, brave, spirited, beautiful, talented Jane. So, so lovable
Christie Ridgway (Beach House No. 9 (Beach House No. 9, #1))
Logan felt like Icarus. He had never felt so free and blissfully alive as he did whenever he was with her. The closer he got to her the higher and happier he felt. Even at the mention of her name his heart would pound incessantly and all the giddy feelings he didn’t quite understand would suddenly reemerge. Every glance upon her blinding beauty cast a shadow upon every other girl for him. Everyone else paled in comparison to her. With every passing moment he had somehow discovered something new and exciting about her. With her by his side he could feel the light breeze flapping against his sides and the warmth of sunshine beating down on his handsome face. This is what it meant to be truly awake. This is what it meant to be in love. But just like Icarus he had gotten too close and had crashed and burned. As he lay crippled in the aftermath of his own destruction he wondered what hurt more the aching pangs of physical pain his body had been subjected to or the raw burning sensation he felt in his heart. He had gladly given her his heart and in return she threw it back in pieces claiming it wasn’t enough. That he wasn’t enough.
Ali Harper (Breaking Bedlam (Beautiful Bedlam #2))
that a statesman should devote his life to studying “the science of politics, in order to acquire in advance all the knowledge that it may be necessary for him to use at some future time”; that authority in a state must always be divided; and that of the three known forms of government—monarchy, aristocracy and people—the best is a mixture of all three, for each one taken on its own can lead to disaster: kings can be capricious, aristocrats self-interested, and “an unbridled multitude enjoying unwonted power more terrifying than a conflagration or a raging sea.” Often today I reread On the Republic, and always I am moved, especially by the passage at the end of book six, when Scipio describes how his grandfather appears to him in a dream and takes him up into the heavens to show him the smallness of the earth in comparison to the grandeur of the Milky Way, where the spirits of dead statesmen dwell as stars. The description was inspired by the vast, clear night skies above the Bay of Naples: I gazed in every direction and all appeared wonderfully beautiful. There were stars which we never see from earth, and they were all larger than we have ever imagined. The starry spheres were much greater than the earth; indeed the earth itself seemed to me so small that I was scornful of our empire, which covers only a single point, as it were, upon its surface. “If only you will look on high,” the old man tells Scipio, “and contemplate this eternal home and resting place, you will no longer bother with the gossip of the common herd or put your trust in human reward for your exploits. Nor will any man’s reputation endure very long, for what men say dies with them and is blotted out with the forgetfulness of posterity.
Robert Harris (Dictator)
2. The classics are those books which constitute a treasured experience for those who have read and loved them; but they remain just as rich an experience for those who reserve the chance to read them for when they are in the best condition to enjoy them. For the fact is that the reading we do when young can often be of little value because we are impatient, cannot concentrate, lack expertise in how to read, or because we lack experience of life. This youthful reading can be (perhaps at the same time) literally formative in that it gives a form or shape to our future experiences, providing them with models, ways of dealing with them, terms of comparison, schemes for categorising them, scales of value, paradigms of beauty: all things which continue to operate in us even when we remember little or nothing about the book we read when young. When we reread the book in our maturity, we then rediscover these constants which by now form part of our inner mechanisms though we have forgotten where they came from. There is a particular potency in the work which can be forgotten in itself but which leaves its seed behind in us. The definition which we can now give is
Italo Calvino (Why Read the Classics?)
Okay,” Emil said. “What are the primary languages of God?” Corporal Gheorghe smiled, put his hand on his chest, and said, “Whatever emotions you carry in your heart, Martel, especially love. God listens loud and clear if you feel love. The Almighty also knows if you are feeling good. The Universal Intelligence responds when you are happy or courageous or even if you are just calm. It understands when you are grateful for the miracle of your existence and rushes to help you when you have a dream that helps other people. The Divine hears all the languages of the heart and beauty.” The corporal sobered and pointed at Emil’s chest. “All languages of the heart, Martel. Private Kumar said if you are dark in your heart, with too many bad thoughts circling in your mind, God also listens. When you suffer and curse your life, the Almighty listens closely. When you have no goodness in your heart or your prayers. No love. No calm. No desire to help others. No thankfulness for the miracle of your life. When you hold things like hatred or anger in your heart or envy or comparison, when life is all about how everything is unfair to me, me, me, the Divine understands those ancient languages of self-destruction, too. The thing is, the Universal Intelligence will help you even if your dreams come from a dark place, but the dreams will end up destroying you in the process. If you don’t believe me, think of Hitler or any other tyrant.” Gheorghe returned his hand to his heart. “So live here, Martel. Love life like it is a miracle every day, every moment, and dream in a way that helps others, and the Divine will hear you and you will walk through battles untouched and have anything your heart desires.
Mark T. Sullivan (The Last Green Valley)
All of us, actors and spectators alike, live surrounded by mirrors. In them, we seek reassurance of our capacity to captivate or impress others, anxiously searching out blemishes that might detract from the appearance we intend to project. The advertising industry deliberately encourages this preoccupation with appearances. In the twenties, "the women in ads were constantly observing themselves, ever self-critical. ... A noticeable proportion of magazine ads directed at women depicted them looking into mirrors. . . . Ads of the 1920s were quite explicit about this narcissistic imperative. They unabashedly used pictures of veiled nudes, and women in auto-erotic stances to encourage self-comparison and to remind women of the primacy of their sexuality." A booklet advertising beauty aids depicted on its cover a nude with the caption: "Your Masterpiece-Yourself.
Christopher Lasch (The Culture of Narcissism: American Life in An Age of Diminishing Expectations)
Our Difficulty in Believing in Providence The first obstacle is that, as long as we have not experienced concretely the fidelity of Divine Providence to provide for our essential needs, we have difficulty believing in it and we abandon it. We have hard heads, the words of Jesus do not suffice for us, we want to see at least a little in order to believe! Well, we do not see it operating around us in a clear manner. How, then, are we to experience it? It is important to know one thing: We cannot experience this support from God unless we leave Him the necessary space in which He can express Himself. I would like to make a comparison. As long as a person who must jump with a parachute does not jump out into the void, he cannot feel that the cords of the parachute will support him, because the parachute has not yet had the chance to open. One must first jump and it is only later that one feels carried. And so it is in spiritual life: “God gives in the measure that we expect of Him,” says Saint John of the Cross. And Saint Francis de Sales says: “The measure of Divine Providence acting on us is the degree of confidence that we have in it.” This is where the problem lies. Many do not believe in Providence because they’ve never experienced it, but they’ve never experienced it because they’ve never jumped into the void and taken the leap of faith. They never give it the possibility to intervene. They calculate everything, anticipate everything, they seek to resolve everything by counting on themselves, instead of counting on God. The founders of religious orders proceed with the audacity of this spirit of faith. They buy houses without having a penny, they receive the poor although they have nothing with which to feed them. Then, God performs miracles for them. The checks arrive and the granaries are filled. But, too often, generations later, everything is planned, calculated. One doesn’t incur an expense without being sure in advance to have enough to cover it. How can Providence manifest itself? And the same is true in the spiritual life. If a priest drafts all his sermons and his talks, down to the least comma, in order to be sure that he does not find himself wanting before his audience, and never has the audacity to begin preaching with a prayer and confidence in God as his only preparation, how can he have this beautiful experience of the Holy Spirit, Who speaks through his mouth? Does the Gospel not say, …do not worry about how to speak or what you should say; for what you are to say will be given to you when the time comes; because it will not be you who will be speaking, but the Spirit of your Father will be speaking in you (Matthew 10:19)? Let us be very clear. Obviously we do not want to say that it is a bad thing to be able to anticipate things, to develop a budget or prepare one’s homilies. Our natural abilities are also instruments in the hands of Providence! But everything depends on the spirit in which we do things. We must clearly understand that there is an enormous difference in attitude of heart between one, who in fear of finding himself wanting because he does not believe in the intervention of God on behalf of those who lean on Him, programs everything in advance to the smallest detail and does not undertake anything except in the exact measure of its actual possibilities, and one who certainly undertakes legitimate things, but who abandons himself with confidence in God to provide all that is asked of him and who thus surpasses his own possibilities. And that which God demands of us always goes beyond our natural human possibilities!
Jacques Philippe (Searching for and Maintaining Peace)
Let me return from history and draw my conclusion. What all this means to us at the present time is this: Our system has already passed its flowering. Some time ago it reached that summit of blessedness which the mysterious game of world history sometimes allows to things beautiful and desirable in themselves. We are on the downward slope. Our course may possible stretch out for a very long time, but in any case nothing finer, ore beautiful, and more desirable than what we have already had can henceforth be expected. The road leads downhill. Historically we are, I believe, ripe for dismantling. And there is no doubt that such will be our fate, not today or tomorrow, but the day after tomorrow. I do not draw this conclusion from any excessively moralistic estimate of our accomplishments and our abilities: I draw it far more from the movements which I see already on the way in the outside world. Critical times are approaching; the omens can be sensed everywhere; the world is once again about to shift its center of gravity. Displacements of power are in the offing. They will not take place without war and violence. From the Far East comes a threat not only to peace, but to life and liberty. Even if our country remains politically neutral, even if our whole nation unanimously abides by tradition (which is not the case) and attempts to remain faithful to Castalian ideals, that will be in vain. Some of our representatives in Parliament are already saying that Castalia is a rather expensive luxury for our country. The country may very soon be forced into a serious rearmament - armaments for defensive purposes only, of course - and great economies will be necessary. In spite of the government's benevolent disposition towards us, much of the economizing will strike us directly. We are proud that our Order and the cultural continuity it provides have cost the country as little as they have. In comparison with other ages, especially the early period of the Feuilletonistic Age with its lavishly endowed universities, its innumerable consultants and opulent institutes, this toll is really not large. It is infinitesimal compared with the sums consumed for war and armaments during the Century of Wars. But before too long this kind of armament may once again be the supreme necessity; the generals will again dominate Parliament; and if the people are confronted with the choice of sacrificing Castalia or exposing themselves to the danger of war and destruction, we know how they will choose. Undoubtedly a bellicose ideology will burgeon. The rash of propaganda will affect youth in particular. Then scholars and scholarship, Latin and mathematics, education and culture, will be considered worth their salt only to the extent that they can serve the ends of war.
Hermann Hesse (The Glass Bead Game)
But most of all, where did this deeply complex sweetness come from?! It's far too nuanced to be solely brown sugar!" "Oh, the answer to that is in the flavoring I used." "Soy sauce?!" "Oh my gosh, she added soy sauce to a dessert?!" "I used it at the very end of the recipe. To make the whipped-cream filling, I used heavy cream, vanilla extract, light brown sugar and a dash of soy sauce. Once the cakes were baked, I spread the whipped cream on top, rolled them up and chilled them in the fridge for a few minutes. All of that made the brown sugar in the cake both taste and look even cuter than it did before." "Aah, I see. The concept is similar to that of salted caramels. Add salt to something sweet.. ... and by comparison the sweetness will stand out on the tongue even more strongly. She's created a new and unique dessert topping- Soy Sauce Whipped Cream!" "Soy sauce whipped cream, eh? I see! So that's how it works!" Since it isn't as refined as white sugar, brown sugar retains trace amounts of minerals, like iron and sodium. The unique layered flavor these minerals give to it matches beautifully with the salty body of soy sauce! "Without brown sugar as the main component, this exquisite deliciousness would not be possible!" "It tastes even yummier if you try some of the various fruits in between each bite of cake. The candy sculptures are totally edible too. If you break one up into crumbs and crunch on it while taking a bite of the cake, it's super yummy." How wonderfully surprising! Each and every bite... ... is an invitation to a land of dreams!
Yūto Tsukuda (食戟のソーマ 29 [Shokugeki no Souma 29] (Food Wars: Shokugeki no Soma, #29))
I miss Diana more than I can express. The world seems a colder place without her luminous presence. To had had Diana’s friendship, to have known her personally, has been a gift beyond comparison. She brought joy and pride and a touch of glamour to my life for years. I loved and admired her without reservation. When Patrick recognized her picture on magazine covers, I thought how incredible it was that we actually knew the beautiful, famous Diana. Best of all, we knew she was even lovelier inside. I read her letters, feeling deeply touched that she continued to care for us. Seeing her in person--warm, unpretentious, and radiant--was a thrill that lasted a long, long time. It truly was, “like being brushed by angels’ wings,” as my friend at the funeral had said. Whoever would have thought when I called for a nanny so many years ago, that magic would enter my life. My family and I watched her dazzling progress from a shy teenager to a multi-faceted and charismatic woman. She fulfilled her many roles so beautifully. Yet to me, Diana was a beloved friend, not the world-famous Princess of Wales. Behind the glamour, I saw the qualities I’d always admired in her--kindness, integrity, and grace in all she did. Above all, Diana was born to be a mother. Showing affection was as natural to her as breathing. I saw her tender care for my young son. I know she was an utterly devoted mother to her own boys, giving them unconditional love and deriving her greatest joy in life from them. I’ve wished so often that her life had been a fairytale, that Diana had been spared the pain and loneliness she suffered. But without the despair, she might not have developed the strength and humanity that reached out to people everywhere. Diana instinctively looked beyond her own problems to ease the pain and distress of others. She touched so many people in her short lifetime. I never thought it would end this way--that she would die so young. I will always remember, as the last hymn faded into silence at her funeral, the solemn tread of the soldiers’ boots--so haunting, so final--as they carried her casket through the Abbey. I couldn’t bear that she was leaving forever. For months now, I’ve searched for some solace in this tragedy. I hope that Diana’s untimely death and the worldwide mourning for her have silenced forever those who belittled her values and doubted her appeal. She rests peacefully now beyond reproach--young and beautiful. Diana, you were greater than we realized. We will never, never forget you.
Mary Robertson (The Diana I Knew: Loving Memories of the Friendship Between an American Mother and Her Son's Nanny Who Became the Princess of Wales)
After Marcus had wiped her perspiring body with a cool, damp cloth, he dressed her in his discarded shirt, which held the scent of his skin. He brought her a plate containing a poached pear, and a glass of sweet wine, and even allowed her to feed him a few bites of the silky-soft fruit. When her appetite was sated, Lillian set aside the empty plate and spoon, and turned to snuggle against him. He rose on one elbow and looked down at her, his fingers playing idly in her hair. “Are you sorry that I wouldn’t let St. Vincent have you?” She gave him a puzzled smile. “Why would you ask such a thing? Surely you’re not having pangs of conscience.” Marcus shook his head. “I am merely wondering if you had any regrets.” Surprised and touched by his need for reassurance, Lillian toyed with the dark curls on his chest. “No,” she said frankly. “He is attractive, and I do like him… but I didn’t want him.” “You did consider marrying him, however.” “Well,” she admitted, “it did cross my mind that I would like to be a duchess— but only to spite you.” A smile flashed across his face. He retaliated with a punishing nip at her breast, causing her to yelp. “I couldn’t have borne it,” he admitted, “seeing you married to anyone but me.” “I don’t think Lord St. Vincent will have any difficulty finding another heiress to suit his purposes.” “Perhaps. But there aren’t many women with fortunes comparable to yours… and none with your beauty.” Smiling at the compliment, Lillian crawled halfway over him and hitched one leg over his. “Tell me more. I want to hear you wax lyrical about my charms.” Levering himself to a sitting position, Marcus lifted her with an ease that made her gasp, and settled her until she straddled his hips. He stroked a fingertip along the pale skin that was exposed at the open vee of the shirt. “I never wax lyrical,” he said. “Marsdens are not a poetic sort. However…” He paused to admire the sight of the long-limbed young woman who sat astride him while her hair trailed to her waist in tangled streamers. “I could at least tell you that you look like a pagan princess, with your tangled black hair and your bright, dark eyes.” “And?” Lillian encouraged, linking her arms loosely around his neck. He set his hands at her slender waist and moved them down to grasp her strong, sleek thighs. “And that every erotic dream I’ve ever had about your magnificent legs pales in comparison to the reality.” “You’ve dreamed about my legs?” Lillian wriggled as she felt his palms slide up her inner thighs in a lazy, teasing path. “Oh yes.
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))