Convincing Quotes

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Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!
Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
Remember when you tried to convince me to feed a poultry pie to the mallards in the park to see if you could breed a race of cannibal ducks?" "They ate it too," Will reminisced. "Bloodthirsty little beasts. Never trust a duck.
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1))
Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book. And then there are books like An Imperial Affliction, which you can't tell people about, books so special and rare and yours that advertising your affection feels like betrayal
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
I have never been convinced there's anything inherently wrong in having fun.
George Plimpton
Religion has actually convinced people that there's an invisible man living in the sky who watches everything you do, every minute of every day. And the invisible man has a special list of ten things he does not want you to do. And if you do any of these ten things, he has a special place, full of fire and smoke and burning and torture and anguish, where he will send you to live and suffer and burn and choke and scream and cry forever and ever 'til the end of time! But He loves you. He loves you, and He needs money! He always needs money! He's all-powerful, all-perfect, all-knowing, and all-wise, somehow just can't handle money!
George Carlin
He - and if there is a God, I am convinced he is a he, because no woman could or would ever fuck things up this badly.
George Carlin
The most confused we ever get is when we're trying to convince our heads of something our heart knows is a lie.
Karen Marie Moning
Because one believes in oneself, one doesn't try to convince others. Because one is content with oneself, one doesn't need others' approval. Because one accepts oneself, the whole world accepts him or her.
Lao Tzu
Usually we walk around constantly believing ourselves. "I'm okay" we say. "I'm alright". But sometimes the truth arrives on you and you can't get it off. That's when you realize that sometimes it isn't even an answer--it's a question. Even now, I wonder how much of my life is convinced.
Markus Zusak (The Book Thief)
I would like to see anyone, prophet, king or God, convince a thousand cats to do the same thing at the same time.
Neil Gaiman
I will not try to convince you to love me, to respect me, to commit to me. I deserve better than that; I AM BETTER THAN THAT...Goodbye.
Steve Maraboli (Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience)
You could never convince a monkey to give you a banana by promising him limitless bananas after death in monkey heaven.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Must you go? I was rather hoping you'd stay and be a ministering angel, but if you must go, you must." "I'll stay," Will said a bit crossly, and threw himself down in the armchair Tessa had just vacated. "I can minister angelically." "None too convincingly. And you're not as pretty to look at as Tessa is," Jem said, closing his eyes as he leaned back against the pillow. "How rude. Many who have gazed upon me have compared the experience to gazing at the radiance of the sun." Jem still had his eyes closed. "If they mean it gives you a headache, they aren't wrong.
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1))
Is it possible, in the final analysis, for one human being to achieve perfect understanding of another? We can invest enormous time and energy in serious efforts to know another person, but in the end, how close can we come to that person's essence? We convince ourselves that we know the other person well, but do we really know anything important about anyone?
Haruki Murakami (The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle)
You look like you got more of a bath than the car. I never thought washing a car would be so hard, but after watching you for the last fifteen minutes, I’m convinced it should be an Olympic sport.
Jennifer L. Armentrout (Obsidian (Lux, #1))
Vanity is a factor, but it is more a question of control. It is easier to trick others into perceiving you as beautiful if you can convince yourself you are beautiful. But mirrors have an uncanny way of telling the truth.
Marissa Meyer (Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles, #1))
When you're lost in those woods, it sometimes takes you a while to realize that you are lost. For the longest time, you can convince yourself that you've just wandered off the path, that you'll find your way back to the trailhead any moment now. Then night falls again and again, and you still have no idea where you are, and it's time to admit that you have bewildered yourself so far off the path that you don't even know from which direction the sun rises anymore.
Elizabeth Gilbert
Life's great happiness is to be convinced we are loved.
Victor Hugo (Les Misérables)
I want to be the friend you fall hopelessly in love with. The one you take into your arms and into your bed and into the private world you keep trapped in your head. I want to be that kind of friend. The one who will memorize the things you say as well as the shape of your lips when you say them. I want to know every curve, every freckle, every shiver of your body. I want to know where to touch you, I want to know how to touch you. I want to know convince you to design a smile just for me. Yes, I do want to be your friend. I want to be your best friend in the entire world.
Tahereh Mafi (Unravel Me (Shatter Me, #2))
When I was a child, when I was an adolescent, books saved me from despair: that convinced me that culture was the highest of values[...].
Simone de Beauvoir (The Woman Destroyed)
The most confused you will ever get is when you try to convince your heart and spirit of something your mind knows is a lie.
Shannon L. Alder
Give me just enough information so that I can lie convincingly.
Stephen King
In a child's eyes, a mother is a goddess. She can be glorious or terrible, benevolent or filled with wrath, but she commands love either way. I am convinced that this is the greatest power in the universe.
N.K. Jemisin (The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms (Inheritance, #1))
Men are never convinced of your reasons, of your sincerity, of the seriousness of your sufferings, except by your death. So long as you are alive, your case is doubtful; you have a right only to their skepticism.
Albert Camus (The Fall)
I am a master of logic and a powerfully convincing debater. In fact, against my better judgment, I can talk myself out of doing anything.
Jarod Kintz ($3.33 (the title is the price))
If our sex life were determined by our first youthful experiments, most of the world would be doomed to celibacy. In no area of human experience are human beings more convinced that something better can be had only if they persevere.
P.D. James (The Children of Men)
It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.
Mark Twain
He that has eyes to see and ears to hear may convince himself that no mortal can keep a secret. If his lips are silent, he chatters with his fingertips; betrayal oozes out of him at every pore.
Sigmund Freud (Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis)
Fantasy, if it's really convincing, can't become dated, for the simple reason that it represents a flight into a dimension that lies beyond the reach of time.
Walt Disney Company
People over forty can seldom be permanently convinced of anything. At eighteen our convictions are hills from which we look; at forty-five they are caves in which we hide.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (Bernice Bobs Her Hair)
In love, no one can harm anyone else; we are each of us responsible for our own feelings and cannot blame someone else for what we feel. It hurt when I lost each of the various men I fell in love with. Now, though, I am convinced that no one loses anyone, because no one owns anyone. That is the true experience of freedom: having the most important thing in the world without owning it.
Paulo Coelho
The more I learn about the universe, the less convinced I am that there's any sort of benevolent force that has anything to do with it, at all.
Neil deGrasse Tyson
I am not sad, he would repeat to himself over and over, I am not sad. As if he might one day convince himself. Or fool himself. Or convince others -- The only thing worse than being sad is for others to know that you are sad.
Jonathan Safran Foer (Everything Is Illuminated)
People who are most afraid of their dreams convince themselves they don't dream at all.
John Steinbeck (The Winter of Our Discontent)
It's easy to convince men to love you, Puck. All you have to do is be a mountain they have to climb or a poem they don't understand.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Scorpio Races)
You cannot convince people to love you. This is an absolute rule. No one will ever give you love because you want him or her to give it. Real love moves freely in both directions. Don’t waste your time on anything else.
Cheryl Strayed (Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar)
In the depths of my heart I can’t help being convinced that my dear fellow-men, with a few exceptions, are worthless.
Sigmund Freud (Letters of Sigmund Freud, 1873-1939)
Son, the greatest trick the Devil pulled was convincing the world there was only one of him.
David Wong (John Dies at the End (John Dies at the End, #1))
Sometimes life's going to hit you in the head with a brick. Don't lose faith. I'm convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did.
Steve Jobs
There's just something obvious about emptiness, even when you try to convince yourself otherwise.
Sarah Dessen (Lock and Key)
It's so much easier to convince yourself you're madly in love with someone when you know nothing about him.
Megan McCafferty (Second Helpings (Jessica Darling, #2))
Before you can inspire with emotion, you must be swamped with it yourself. Before you can move their tears, your own must flow. To convince them, you must yourself, believe.
Winston S. Churchill
He awoke each morning with the desire to do right, to be a good and meaningful person, to be, as simple as it sounded and as impossible as it actually was, happy. And during the course of each day his heart would descend from his chest into his stomach. By early afternoon he was overcome by the feeling that nothing was right, or nothing was right for him, and by the desire to be alone. By evening he was fulfilled: alone in the magnitude of his grief, alone in his aimless guilt, alone even in his loneliness. I am not sad, he would repeat to himself over and over, I am not sad. As if he might one day convince himself. Or fool himself. Or convince others--the only thing worse than being sad is for others to know that you are sad. I am not sad. I am not sad. Because his life had unlimited potential for happiness, insofar as it was an empty white room. He would fall asleep with his heart at the foot of his bed, like some domesticated animal that was no part of him at all. And each morning he would wake with it again in the cupboard of his rib cage, having become a little heavier, a little weaker, but still pumping. And by the midafternoon he was again overcome with the desire to be somewhere else, someone else, someone else somewhere else. I am not sad.
Jonathan Safran Foer (Everything Is Illuminated)
I am convinced that most people do not grow up...We marry and dare to have children and call that growing up. I think what we do is mostly grow old. We carry accumulation of years in our bodies, and on our faces, but generally our real selves, the children inside, are innocent and shy as magnolias.
Maya Angelou (Letter to My Daughter)
I've always done whatever I felt like doing in life. People may try to stop me, and convince me I'm wrong, but I won't change.
Haruki Murakami (What I Talk About When I Talk About Running)
A woman who is convinced that she deserves to accept only the best challenges herself to give the best. Then she is living phenomenally.
Maya Angelou
That proves you are unusual," returned the Scarecrow; "and I am convinced that the only people worthy of consideration in this world are the unusual ones. For the common folks are like the leaves of a tree, and live and die unnoticed.
L. Frank Baum (The Land of Oz)
She was convinced that she could have been happy with him, when it was no longer likely they should meet.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
We all know that Art is not truth. Art is a lie that makes us realize truth at least the truth that is given us to understand. The artist must know the manner whereby to convince others of the truthfulness of his lies.
Pablo Picasso
When we are in love, we are convinced nobody else will do. But as time goes, others do do, and often do do, much much better.
Coco J. Ginger
When others asked the truth of me, I was convinced it was not the truth they wanted, but an illusion they could bear to live with.
Anaïs Nin
Common sense is the most widely shared commodity in the world, for every man is convinced that he is well supplied with it.
René Descartes
I wonder if that's how darkness wins, by convincing us to trap it inside ourselves, instead of emptying it out. I don't want it to win.
Jasmine Warga (My Heart and Other Black Holes)
Convinced myself, I seek not to convince.
Edgar Allan Poe (Great Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe)
Straight people, he thinks, probably don't spend this much time convincing themselves that they're straight.
Casey McQuiston (Red, White & Royal Blue)
According to some, heroic deaths are admirable things. I've never been convinced by this argument, mainly because, no matter how cool, stylish, composed, unflappable, manly, or defiant you are, at the end of the day you're also dead. Which is a little too permanent for my liking.
Jonathan Stroud (Ptolemy's Gate (Bartimaeus, #3))
There are some things we do because we convince ourselves it would be better for everyone involved. We tell ourselves that it's the right thing to do, the altruistic thing to do. It's far easier than telling ourselves the truth.
Jodi Picoult (My Sister's Keeper)
Even though I don't ask, Plutarch gives me cheerful updates on the phone like "Good news, Katniss! I think we've almost got him convinced you're not a mutt!" Or "Today he was allowed to feed himself pudding!
Suzanne Collins (Mockingjay (The Hunger Games, #3))
I try to convince myself that it's the alcohol talking. But alcohol can't talk. It just sits there. It can't even get itself out of the bottle.
David Levithan (The Lover's Dictionary)
Noah shifted on the bed, and the oddest crunching sound came underneath him. I looked, really looked, at the bed for the first time. "What," I asked slowly, as I eyed the animal crackers strewn all over it, "the hell?" "You were convinced they were your pets," Noah said, not even trying to suppress his laughter. "You wouldn't let me touch them.
Michelle Hodkin (The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer, #1))
I'm afraid not." Hades sighed. "My son here convinced me that perhaps I should prioritize my list of enemies." He glared at me with distaste. "As much as I dislike certain upstart demigods, it would not do for Olympus to fall. I would miss bickering with my siblings. And if there is one thing we agree on - it is that you were a TERRIBLE father.
Rick Riordan (The Last Olympian (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #5))
I am convinced that human life is filled with many pure, happy, serene examples of insincerity, truly splendid of their kind-of people deceiving one another without (strangely enough) any wounds being inflicted, of people who seem unaware even that they are deceiving one another.
Osamu Dazai (No Longer Human)
She's my purpose and we're going to save each other. We're going to save everyone. And then I'm going to convince her that she's supposed to stay here. With me.
Kendare Blake (Anna Dressed in Blood (Anna, #1))
The groom always smiles proudly because he's convinced he's accomplished something quite wonderful. The bride smiles because she's been able to convince him of it.
Judith McNaught (A Kingdom of Dreams (Westmoreland, #1))
If you would convince a man that he does wrong, do right. But do not care to convince him. Men will believe what they see. Let them see.
Henry David Thoreau
Long books, when read, are usually overpraised, because the reader wishes to convince others and himself that he has not wasted his time.
E.M. Forster (Aspects of the Novel)
All I want from you is to trust me with what little you can, and grow in loving people around you with the same love I share with you. It's not your job to change them, or to convince them. You are free to love without an agenda.
William Paul Young (The Shack)
Someone can be madly in love with you and still not be ready. They can love you in a way you have never been loved and still not join you on the bridge. And whatever their reasons you must leave. Because you never ever have to inspire anyone to meet you on the bridge. You never ever have to convince someone to do the work to be ready. There is more extraordinary love, more love that you have never seen, out here in this wide and wild universe. And there is the love that will be ready.
Nayyirah Waheed
From all that I can collect by your manner of talking, you must be two of the silliest girls in the country. I have suspected it some time, but I am now convinced.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
So, you're the man who can't spell 'fuck.'" Dorothy Parker to Norman Mailer after publishers had convinced Mailer to replace the word with a euphemism, 'fug,' in his 1948 book, "The Naked and the Dead.
Dorothy Parker
(A)ll it takes is one generation to brainwash a population and convince them that reality doesn't exist.
Marie Lu (Prodigy (Legend, #2))
I have better things to do.” “Like what?” He opens one eye and looks at me. “Like convince a stubborn girl to admit she’s madly in love with me.
Susan Ee (End of Days (Penryn & the End of Days, #3))
You shouldn’t have to convince anyone to choose you. There is no real choice in love.
Tarryn Fisher (F*ck Love)
I'd been convinced I was on the outside, but really, I'd always been within arm's reach. All I had to do was ask, and I, too, would be easily brought back, surrounded and immersed, finding myself safe, somewhere in between.
Sarah Dessen (Just Listen)
You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.
Robert A. Heinlein (Revolt in 2100/Methuselah's Children)
I know this is stupid, but part of me felt like if I could come see you today, if I could convince you to go with me tonight, then maybe I could still change things. It's dumb, I know. It's not like Levana cares if I, you know, might have actual feelings for someone.
Marissa Meyer (Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles, #1))
No one actually needs another person or another person's love to survive. Love is when we have irrationally convinced ourselves that we do.
Gabrielle Zevin (Elsewhere)
The more I study religions the more I am convinced that man never worshiped anything but himself.
Richard Francis Burton (The Book of a Thousand Nights and One Night: 17 Volumes, Complete)
I have been used to consider poetry as "the food of love" said Darcy. "Of a fine, stout, healthy love it may. Everything nourishes what is strong already. But if it be only a slight, thin sort of inclination, I am convinced that one good sonnet will starve it entirely away.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
He's the kind of liar who totally forgets what he told you the last time, but he believes every single lie with such conviction that sometimes he can convince you of it.
Holly Black (White Cat (Curse Workers, #1))
...and the funny thing was that people who weren't entirely certain they were right always argued much louder than other people, as if the main person they were trying to convince were themselves.
Terry Pratchett (The Bromeliad Trilogy (Omnibus: Truckers / Diggers / Wings))
Nothing on this planet can compare with a woman’s love—it is kind and compassionate, patient and nurturing, generous and sweet and unconditional. Pure. If you are her man, she will walk on water and through a mountain for you, too, no matter how you’ve acted out, no matter what crazy thing you’ve done, no matter the time or demand. If you are her man, she will talk to you until there just aren’t any more words left to say, encourage you when you’re at rock bottom and think there just isn’t any way out, hold you in her arms when you’re sick, and laugh with you when you’re up. And if you’re her man and that woman loves you—I mean really loves you?—she will shine you up when you’re dusty, encourage you when you’re down, defend you even when she’s not so sure you were right, and hang on your every word, even when you’re not saying anything worth listening to. And no matter what you do, no matter how many times her friends say you’re no good, no matter how many times you slam the door on the relationship, she will give you her very best and then some, and keep right on trying to win over your heart, even when you act like everything she’s done to convince you she’s The One just isn’t good enough. That’s a woman’s love—it stands the test of time, logic, and all circumstance.
Steve Harvey (Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment)
A man convinced against his will Is of the same opinion still
Dale Carnegie (How to Win Friends and Influence People)
I'm convinced that responsibility is some kind of psychological disease.
Brandon Sanderson (Alcatraz Versus the Knights of Crystallia (Alcatraz, #3))
Arguments are to be avoided, they are always vulgar and often convincing.
Oscar Wilde
Who knows how to make love stay? 1. Tell love you are going to Junior's Deli on Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn to pick up a cheesecake, and if loves stays, it can have half. It will stay. 2. Tell love you want a momento of it and obtain a lock of its hair. Burn the hair in a dime-store incense burner with yin/yang symbols on three sides. Face southwest. Talk fast over the burning hair in a convincingly exotic language. Remove the ashes of the burnt hair and use them to paint a moustache on your face. Find love. Tell it you are someone new. It will stay. 3. Wake love up in the middle of the night. Tell it the world is on fire. Dash to the bedroom window and pee out of it. Casually return to bed and assure love that everything is going to be all right. Fall asleep. Love will be there in the morning.
Tom Robbins (Still Life with Woodpecker)
I became convinced that noncooperation with evil is as much a moral obligation as is cooperation with good.
Martin Luther King Jr. (The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr.)
What I am going to tell you about is what we teach our physics students in the third or fourth year of graduate school... It is my task to convince you not to turn away because you don't understand it. You see my physics students don't understand it... That is because I don't understand it. Nobody does.
Richard P. Feynman (QED: The Strange Theory of Light and Matter)
We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our Attitudes.
Charles R. Swindoll
If you have to convince someone to stay with you then they have already left.
Shannon L. Alder
Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being "in love" which any of us can convince ourselves we are. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Your mother and I had it, we had roots that grew towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossom had fallen from our branches we found that we were one tree and not two.
Louis de Bernières (Corelli's Mandolin)
I'm convinced that most men don't know what they believe, rather, they only know what they wish to believe. How many people blame God for man's atrocities, but wouldn't dream of imprisoning a mother for her son's crime?
Criss Jami (Killosophy)
I am convinced that the jealous, the angry, the bitter and the egotistical are the first to race to the top of mountains. A confident person enjoys the journey, the people they meet along the way and sees life not as a competition. They reach the summit last because they know God isn’t at the top waiting for them. He is down below helping his followers to understand that the view is glorious where ever you stand.
Shannon L. Alder
I cannot tell you how you will survive without me. I cannot tell you how to mourn me.  I cannot convince you to not feel guilty if you forget the anniversary of my death, or if you realize days or weeks or months have gone by without thinking about me. I just want you to live.
Adam Silvera (They Both Die at the End)
At times to be silent is to lie. You will win because you have enough brute force. But you will not convince. For to convince you need to persuade. And in order to persuade you would need what you lack: Reason and Right
Miguel de Unamuno
I am convinced that the act of thinking logically cannot possibly be natural to the human mind. If it were, then mathematics would be everybody's easiest course at school and our species would not have taken several millennia to figure out the scientific method.
Neil deGrasse Tyson (The Sky Is Not the Limit: Adventures of an Urban Astrophysicist)
I've seen a look in dogs' eyes, a quickly vanishing look of amazed contempt, and I am convinced that basically dogs think humans are nuts.
John Steinbeck
She would smile and show no surprise, convinced as she was, the same as I, that casual meetings are apt to be just the opposite, and that people who make dates are the same kind who need lines on their writing paper, or who always squeeze up from the bottom on a tube of toothpaste.
Julio Cortázar (Hopscotch)
Jem gave her a wistful look. “Must you go? I was rather hoping that you’d stay and be a ministering angel, but if you must go, you must.” “I’ll stay,” Will said a bit crossly, and threw himself down in the armchair Tessa had just vacated. “I can minister angelically.” “None too convincingly. And you’re not as pretty to look at as Tessa is,” Jem said, closing his eyes as he leaned back against the pillow. “How rude. Many who have gazed upon me have compared it to gazing at the radiance of the sun.” Jem still had his eyes closed. “If they mean that it gives you a headache, they aren’t wrong.
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1))
I've always been an ironic dreamer, unfaithful to my inner promises. Like a complete outsider, a casual observer of whom I thought I was, I've always enjoyed watching my daydreams go down in defeat. I was never convinced of what I believed in. I filled my hands with sand, called it gold, and opened them up to let it slide through. Words were my only truth. When the right words were said, all was done; the rest was the sand that had always been.
Fernando Pessoa (The Book of Disquiet)
They say that a person’s personality is the sum of their experiences. But that isn’t true, at least not entirely, because if our past was all that defined us, we’d never be able to put up with ourselves. We need to be allowed to convince ourselves that we’re more than the mistakes we made yesterday. That we are all of our next choices, too, all of our tomorrows.
Fredrik Backman (Anxious People)
As a teenager I was so insecure. I was the type of guy that never fitted in because he never dared to choose. I was convinced I had absolutely no talent at all. For nothing. And that thought took away all my ambition too.
Johnny Depp
I don't accept the currently fashionable assertion that any view is automatically as worthy of respect as any equal and opposite view. My view is that the moon is made of rock. If someone says to me 'Well, you haven't been there, have you? You haven't seen it for yourself, so my view that it is made of Norwegian Beaver Cheese is equally valid' - then I can't even be bothered to argue. There is such a thing as the burden of proof, and in the case of god, as in the case of the composition of the moon, this has shifted radically. God used to be the best explanation we'd got, and we've now got vastly better ones. God is no longer an explanation of anything, but has instead become something that would itself need an insurmountable amount of explaining. So I don't think that being convinced that there is no god is as irrational or arrogant a point of view as belief that there is. I don't think the matter calls for even-handedness at all.
Douglas Adams
A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.
Max Planck (Scientific Autobiography and Other Papers)
If you can't convince them, confuse them.
Harry Truman
No man ever believes that the Bible means what it says: He is always convinced that it says what he means.
George Bernard Shaw
The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the convinced Communist, but people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction (i.e., the reality of experience) and the distinction between true and false (i.e., the standards of thought) no longer exist.
Hannah Arendt (The Origins of Totalitarianism)
Envy is the religion of the mediocre. It comforts them, it soothes their worries, and finally it rots their souls, allowing them to justify their meanness and their greed until they believe these to be virtues. Such people are convinced that the doors of heaven will be opened only to poor wretches like themselves who go through life without leaving any trace but their threadbare attempts to belittle others and to exclude - and destroy if possible - those who, by the simple fact of their existence, show up their own poorness of spirit, mind, and guts. Blessed be the one at whom the fools bark, because his soul will never belong to them.
Carlos Ruiz Zafón (The Angel's Game (The Cemetery of Forgotten Books, #2))
Never waste your time trying to convince someone else of your worth. If they can't see it, they are not worth the effort.
Amari Soul (Reflections Of A Man)
There is a desire within each of us, in the deep center of ourselves that we call our heart. We were born with it, it is never completely satisfied, and it never dies. We are often unaware of it, but it is always awake. It is the Human desire for Love. Every person in this Earth yearns to love, to be loved, to know love. Our true identity, our reason for being is to be found in this desire. Love is the "why" of life, why we are functioning at all. I am convinced it is the fundamental energy of the human spirit. the fuel on which we run, the wellspring of our vitality. And grace, which is the flowing, creative activity, of love itself, is what makes all goodness possible. Love should come first, it should be the beginning of, and the reason for everything.
Gerald G. May (Living in Love)
Convince your enemy that he will gain very little by attacking you; this will diminish his enthusiasm
Sun Tzu
I'm convinced that you never have to give up liberties to be safe. I think you're less safe when you give up your liberties.
Ron Paul
I'm looking into my past lives. I'm convinced some of them still owe me money.
Graham Parke (Unspent Time)
That's another thing about lies: if you convince yourself they're true, they become true. A lie is a discrepancy of belief, not fact.
Leah Raeder (Unteachable)
‎"Was that your plan all along? Show me where to go, then convince me there's nothing I can do to save my sister?" "Actually, my plan all along was to become a rockstar, travel the world collecting fan girls, and then getting really fat and spending the rest of my life playing video games while the girls kept comin', thinking I look good as I did in my music videos." He shrugs as if to say, 'who knew the world would turn out so different?
Susan Ee (Angelfall (Penryn & the End of Days, #1))
trying to convince myself i am allowed to take up space is like writing with my left hand when i was born to use my right -the idea shrinking is hereditary
Rupi Kaur (Milk and Honey)
...legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.
Thomas Jefferson (Letters of Thomas Jefferson)
It's impeccable how brutal the truth can be at times. You can only admire it. Usually, we walk around constantly believing ourselves. "I'm okay," we say. "I'm alright." But sometimes the truth arrives on you, and you can't get it off. That’s when you realize that sometimes it isn’t even an answer - it's a question. Even now, I wonder how much of my life is convinced.
Markus Zusak (I Am the Messenger)
And there are people that will stand in your corner and convince you to stand up for another round no matter what.
Pete Wentz
I was a normal child. Which is to say, I was selfish and I was not entirely convinced of the existence of things that were not me, and I was certain, rock-solid, unshakeably certain, that I was the most important thing in creation. There was nothing that was more important to me than I was.
Neil Gaiman (The Ocean at the End of the Lane)
A man once asked me ... how I managed in my books to write such natural conversation between men when they were by themselves. Was I, by any chance, a member of a large, mixed family with a lot of male friends? I replied that, on the contrary, I was an only child and had practically never seen or spoken to any men of my own age till I was about twenty-five. "Well," said the man, "I shouldn't have expected a woman (meaning me) to have been able to make it so convincing." I replied that I had coped with this difficult problem by making my men talk, as far as possible, like ordinary human beings. This aspect of the matter seemed to surprise the other speaker; he said no more, but took it away to chew it over. One of these days it may quite likely occur to him that women, as well as men, when left to themselves, talk very much like human beings also.
Dorothy L. Sayers (Are Women Human? Astute and Witty Essays on the Role of Women in Society)
I am absolutely convinced that meaninglessness does not come from being weary of pain; meaninglessness comes from being weary of pleasure. And that is why we find ourselves emptied of meaning with our pantries still full.
Ravi Zacharias (Can Man Live Without God)
The tongue can conceal the truth, but the eyes never! You're asked an unexpected question, you don't even flinch, it takes just a second to get yourself under control, you know just what you have to say to hide the truth, and you speak very convincingly, and nothing in your face twitches to give you away. But the truth, alas, has been disturbed by the question, and it rises up from the depths of your soul to flicker in your eyes and all is lost.
Mikhail Bulgakov (The Master and Margarita)
You can run. You can keep running to the ends of the earth. But I won’t be far behind you.” “Ethan—” “No. I will never be far behind you.” He tipped up my chin so that I could do nothing else but look back into his eyes. “Do the things you need to do. Learn to be a vampire, to be a warrior, to be the soldier you are capable of being. But consider the possibility that I made a mistake I regret—and that I’ll continue to regret that mistake and try to convince you to give me another chance until the earth stops turning.
Chloe Neill (Hard Bitten (Chicagoland Vampires, #4))
You point your feet out too much when you walk,” Will went on. He was busy polishing an apple on his shirtfront, and appeared not to notice Tessa glaring at him. “Camille walks delicately. Like a faun in the woods. Not like a duck.” “I do not walk like a duck.” “I like ducks,” Jem observed diplomatically. “Especially the ones in Hyde Park.” He glanced sideways at Will; both boys were sitting on the edge of the high table, their legs dangling over the side. “Remember when you tried to convince me to feed poultry pie to the mallards in the park to see if you could breed a race of cannibal ducks?” “They ate it too,” Will reminisced. “Bloodthirsty little beasts. Never trust a duck.
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1))
I want to convince you that these kinds of personal explanations of success don't work. People don't rise from nothing....It is only by asking where they are from that we can unravel the logic behind who succeeds and who doesn't.
Malcolm Gladwell (Outliers: The Story of Success)
Victor patted my hand. 'I like you, Sky. You're a fighter.' 'I am, aren't I? Hear that, Zed? No more bambi comparisons. I'm a Rottweiler -with a temper.' 'A very small Rottweiler,' said Zed, still not convinced.
Joss Stirling (Finding Sky (Benedicts, #1))
The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company...a church....a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past...we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude...I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you...we are in charge of our attitudes.
Charles R. Swindoll
It's a funny thing about the modern world. You hear girls in the toilets of clubs saying, "Yeah, he fucked off and left me. He didn't love me. He just couldn't deal with love. He was too fucked up to know how to love me." Now, how did that happen? What was it about this unlovable century that convinced us we were, despite everything, eminently lovable as a people, as a species? What made us think that anyone who fails to love us is damaged, lacking, malfunctioning in some way? And particularly if they replace us with a god, or a weeping madonna, or the face of Christ in a ciabatta roll---then we call them crazy. Deluded. Regressive. We are so convinced of the goodness of ourselves, and the goodness of our love, we cannot bear to believe that there might be something more worthy of love than us, more worthy of worship. Greeting cards routinely tell us everybody deserves love. No. Everybody deserves clean water. Not everybody deserves love all the time.
Zadie Smith (White Teeth)
It's easy to convince men to love you, Puck. All you have to do is be a mountain they have to climb or a poem they don't understand. Something that makes them feel strong or clever. It's why they love the ocean.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Scorpio Races)
Only the man who has had to face despair is really convinced that he needs mercy. Those who do not want mercy never seek it. It is better to find God on the threshold of despair than to risk our lives in a complacency that has never felt the need of forgiveness. A life that is without problems may literally be more hopeless than one that always verges on despair.
Thomas Merton (No Man Is an Island)
No problem," Gale replies. "I wake up ten times a night anyway." "To make sure Katniss is still here?" asks Peeta. "Something like that,"... "That was funny, what Tigris said. About no one knowing what to do with her." "Well, WE never have,"... "She loves you, you know," says Peeta. "She as good as told me after they whipped you." "Don't believe it,"Gale answers. "The way she kissed you in the Quarter Quell...well she never kissed me like that." "It was just part of the show," Peeta tells him, although there's an edge of doubt in his voice. "No, you won her over. Gave up everything for her. Maybe that's the only way to convince her you love her." There's a long pause. "I should have volunteered to take your place in the first Games. Protected her then." "You couldn't," says Peeta. "She'd never have forgiven you. You had to take care of her family. They matter more to her than her life." ... "I wonder how she'll make up her mind." "Oh, that I do know." I can just catch Gale's last words through the layer of fur. "Katniss will pick whoever she thinks she can't survive without
Suzanne Collins (Mockingjay (The Hunger Games, #3))
You can justify anything. If you’re narcissistic enough to believe that the universe conspires for and against you—which we all are, deep down—then you can convince yourself you're getting signs about anything and everything.
Taylor Jenkins Reid (Daisy Jones & The Six)
I like ducks." Jem observed diplomatically. "Esspecially the ones in Hyde Park." He glanced side ways at Will; both boys were sitting at the edge of a high table, thier legs dangling over the side. "Remember when you tried to convince me to feed pultry pie the the mallards in the park to see if you couls breed a race of cannibal ducks?" "They ate it too," Will reminisced. "Bloodthirsty little beasts. Never trust a duck.
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1))
Hades smiled coldly. "Hello, Father. You're looking...young." "Hades," Kronos growled. "I hope you and the ladies have come to pledge your allegiance." "I'm afraid not." Hades sighed. "My son here convinced me that perhaps I should prioritize my list of enemies." He glanced at me with distaste. "As much as I dislike certain upstart demigods, it would not do for Olympus to fall. I would miss bickering with my siblings. And if there is one thing we agree on - it is that you were a TERRIBLE father.
Rick Riordan (The Last Olympian (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #5))
I feel such a creative force in me: I am convinced that there will be a time when, let us say, I will make something good every day , on a regular basis....I am doing my very best to make every effort because I am longing so much to make beautiful things. But beautiful things mean painstaking work, disappointment, and perseverance.
Vincent van Gogh
If you have more than one reason to do something (choose a doctor or veterinarian, hire a gardener or an employee, marry a person, go on a trip), just don’t do it. It does not mean that one reason is better than two, just that by invoking more than one reason you are trying to convince yourself to do something. Obvious decisions (robust to error) require no more than a single reason.
Nassim Nicholas Taleb (Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder)
It annoys me when people try to convince other people that their anger or stress isn’t warranted if someone else in the world is worse off than them. It’s bullshit. Your emotions and reactions are valid, Merit. Don’t let anyone tell you any different. You’re the only one who feels them.
Colleen Hoover (Without Merit)
I opened my eyes and focused on his. “I’d be happier without you,” I lied as convincingly as I could. “Too bad.” Noah’s mouth curved into the half-smile I loved and hated so much, just inches from my navel. My head was foggy. “You’re supposed to say, ‘All I want is your happiness. I’ll do whatever it takes, even if it means being without you.’ “ “Sorry,” Noah said. “I’m just not that big of a person.
Michelle Hodkin (The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer, #1))
The feeling of awed wonder that science can give us is one of the highest experiences of which the human psyche is capable. It is a deep aesthetic passion to rank with the finest that music and poetry can deliver. It is truly one of the things that make life worth living and it does so, if anything, more effectively if it convinces us that the time we have for living is quite finite.
Richard Dawkins (Unweaving the Rainbow: Science, Delusion and the Appetite for Wonder)
The worst part is wondering how you’ll find the strength tomorrow to go on doing what you did today and have been doing for much too long, where you’ll find the strength for all that stupid running around, those projects that come to nothing, those attempts to escape from crushing necessity, which always founder and serve only to convince you one more time that destiny is implacable, that every night will find you down and out, crushed by the dread of more and more sordid and insecure tomorrows. And maybe it’s treacherous old age coming on, threatening the worst. Not much music left inside us for life to dance to. Our youth has gone to the ends of the earth to die in the silence of the truth. And where, I ask you, can a man escape to, when he hasn’t enough madness left inside him? The truth is an endless death agony. The truth is death. You have to choose: death or lies. I’ve never been able to kill myself.
Louis-Ferdinand Céline
All of us have failed to match our dream of perfection. I rate us on the basis of our splendid failure to do the impossible. If I could write all my work again, I'm convinced I could do it better. This is the healthiest condition for an artist. That's why he keeps working, trying again: he believes each time that this time he will do it, bring it off. Of course he won't.
William Faulkner
Nothing on this planet can compare with a woman’s love—it is kind and compassionate, patient and nurturing, generous and sweet and unconditional. Pure. If you are her man, she will walk on water and through a mountain for you, too, no matter how you’ve acted out, no matter what crazy thing you’ve done, no matter the time or demand. If you are her man, she will talk to you until there just aren’t any more words left to say, encourage you when you’re at rock bottom and think there just isn’t any way out, hold you in her arms when you’re sick, and laugh with you when you’re up. And if you’re her man and that woman loves you—I mean really loves you?—she will shine you up when you’re dusty, encourage you when you’re down, defend you even when she’s not so sure you were right, and hang on your every word, even when you’re not saying anything worth listening to. And no matter what you do, no matter how many times her friends say you’re no good, no matter how many times you slam the door on the relationship, she will give you her very best and then some, and keep right on trying to win over your heart, even when you act like everything she’s done to convince you she’s The One just isn’t good enough. That’s a woman’s love—it stands the test of time, logic, and all circumstance. ... Well, I’m here to tell you that expecting that kind of love— that perfection—from a man is unrealistic. That’s right, I said it—it’s not gonna happen, no way, no how. Because a man’s love isn’t like a woman’s love.
Steve Harvey
For me the world is weird because it is stupendous, awesome, mysterious, unfathomable; my interest has been to convince you that you must assume responsibility for being here, in this marvelous world, in this marvelous desert, in this marvelous time. I want to convince you that you must learn to make every act count, since you are going to be here for only a short while, in fact, too short for witnessing all the marvels of it.
Carlos Castaneda (Journey to Ixtlan)
The nutritionist said I should eat root vegetables. Said if I could get down thirteen turnips a day I would be grounded, rooted. Said my head would not keep flying away to where the darkness lives. The psychic told me my heart carries too much weight. Said for twenty dollars she’d tell me what to do. I handed her the twenty. She said, “Stop worrying, darling. You will find a good man soon.” The first psycho therapist told me to spend three hours each day sitting in a dark closet with my eyes closed and ears plugged. I tried it once but couldn’t stop thinking about how gay it was to be sitting in the closet. The yogi told me to stretch everything but the truth. Said to focus on the out breath. Said everyone finds happiness when they care more about what they give than what they get. The pharmacist said, “Lexapro, Lamicatl, Lithium, Xanax.” The doctor said an anti-psychotic might help me forget what the trauma said. The trauma said, “Don’t write these poems. Nobody wants to hear you cry about the grief inside your bones.” But my bones said, “Tyler Clementi jumped from the George Washington Bridge into the Hudson River convinced he was entirely alone.” My bones said, “Write the poems.
Andrea Gibson (The Madness Vase)
And I find myself saying, “It wasn’t really about her.” And finding it’s true. What do you mean?” Norah asks. It was about the feeling, you know? She caused it in me, but it wasn’t about her. It was about my reaction, what I wanted to feel and then convinced myself that I felt, because I wanted it that bad. That illusion. It was love because I created it as love.
David Levithan (Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist)
What I try to do is write. I may write for two weeks ‘the cat sat on the mat, that is that, not a rat,’.... And it might be just the most boring and awful stuff. But I try. When I’m writing, I write. And then it’s as if the muse is convinced that I’m serious and says, ‘Okay. Okay. I’ll come.
Maya Angelou
Your heart will fix itself. It’s your mind you need to worry about. Your mind where you locked the memories, your mind where you have kept pieces of the ones that hurt you, that still cut through you like shards of glass. Your mind will keep you up at night, make you cry, destroy you over and over again. You need to convince your mind that it has to let go…because your heart already knows how to heal.
Nikita Gill
When we are securely rooted in personal intimacy with the source of life, it will be possible to remain flexible without being relativistic, convinced without being rigid, willing to confront without being offensive, gentle and forgiving without being soft, and true witnesses without being manipulative.
Henri J.M. Nouwen
The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company... a church... a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our Attitudes.
Charles R. Swindoll
There was a pause. I was still scared by every gap in our conversation, fearing that this was it, the point where we had nothing left to say. I was still trying to impress you, and I still wanted to be impressed by you, so I could pass along pieces of your impressiveness to my friends, convincing myself this was possible.
David Levithan (The Lover's Dictionary)
Tall, with skin the color of rich coffee, and dressed all in black, Jim looked like he was carved from a block of solid muscle. Logic said that at some point he must've been a baby and then a child, but looking at him one was almost convinced that some deity touched the ground with its scepter and proclaimed, "There shall be a badass," and Jim sprung into existence, fully formed, complete with clothes, and ready for action.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Gifts (Kate Daniels, #5.4))
Given enough time, you could convince yourself that loneliness was something better, that it was solitude, the ideal condition for reflection, even a kind of freedom. Once you were thus convinced, you were foolish to open the door and let anyone in, not all the way in. You risked the hard-won equilibrium, that tranquility that you called peace
Dean Koontz (The Good Guy)
If you went twenty-four hours without cigarettes, I'd drink a can of pop. Regular pop. The whole can." Isaw the glimmer of Adrian's earlier smile returning. "You would not." "I totally would." "Half a can would put you into a coma." Sonya frowned. "Are you diabetic?" she asked me. "No," said Adrian, "but Sage is convinced one extraneous calorie will make her go from super skinny to just regular skinny. Tragedy." "Hey," I said. "You think it’d be a tragedy to go an hour without a cigarette." "Don’t question my steel resolve, Sage. I went without one for two hours today." "Show me twenty-four, and then I’ll be impressed." He gave me a look of mock surprise. "You mean you aren’t already? And here I thought you were dazzled from the moment you met me.
Richelle Mead (The Golden Lily (Bloodlines, #2))
Sometimes I get tired of trying to convince him that I love him and shall love him for ever. He pounces on my words like a barrister and twists them. I know he is afraid of that desert which would be around him if our love were to end, but he can’t realize that I feel exactly the same. What he says aloud, I say to myself silently and write it here.
Graham Greene (The End of the Affair)
Everyone tells a story about who they are in their own head. That story defines you, dictating all your actions and all your mistakes. If your own story is filled with guilt and fear and self-hatred, life can look pretty miserable. But, if you're very lucky, you might have a person who tells you a better story, one that takes up residence in your soul, speaking louder than the woeful tale of which you've convinced yourself. If you let it speak loudly within your heart, it becomes your passion and your purpose.
Mia Sheridan (Leo)
Each of us has something within us which won't be denied, even if it makes us scream aloud to die. We are what we are, that's all. Like the old Celtic legend of the bird with the thorn in its breast, singing its heart out and dying. Because it has to, its self-knowledge can't affect or change the outcome, can it? Everyone singing his own little song, convinced it's the most wonderful song the world has ever heard. Don't you see? We create our own thorns, and never stop to count the cost. All we can do is suffer the pain, and tell ourselves it was well worth it.
Colleen McCullough (The Thorn Birds)
Education doesn’t make you happy. Nor does freedom. We don’t become happy just because we’re free – if we are. Or because we’ve been educated – if we have. But because education may be the means by which we realize we are happy. It opens our eyes, our ears, tells us where delights are lurking, convinces us that there is only one freedom of any importance whatsoever, that of the mind, and gives us the assurance – the confidence – to walk the path our mind, our educated mind, offers.
Iris Murdoch
Shane was silent a moment, then let out a long breath. "I bet I could convince you if I could get through these bars. . . ." "You'd get arrested all over again." "Well, you're just that tempting. Jailbait." He kissed her fingers, which made her shiver all over; his lips lingered warm on her skin, reminding her of what it felt like to be alone with him, in that timeless...
Rachel Caine (Kiss of Death (The Morganville Vampires, #8))
Do not dilute the truth of your potential. We often convince ourselves that we cannot change, that we cannot overcome the circumstances of our lives. That is simply not true. You have been blessed with immeasurable power to make positive changes in your life. But you can't just wish it, you can't just hope it, you can't just want it... you have to LIVE it, BE it, DO it.
Steve Maraboli (Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience)
Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is in some small way to become evil oneself. One's standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.
Theodore Dalrymple
I examined the poets, and I look on them as people whose talent overawes both themselves and others, people who present themselves as wise men and are taken as such, when they are nothing of the sort. From poets, I moved to artists. No one was more ignorant about the arts than I; no one was more convinced that artists possessed really beautiful secrets. However, I noticed that their condition was no better than that of the poets and that both of them have the same misconceptions. Because the most skillful among them excel in their specialty, they look upon themselves as the wisest of men. In my eyes, this presumption completely tarnished their knowledge. As a result, putting myself in the place of the oracle and asking myself what I would prefer to be — what I was or what they were, to know what they have learned or to know that I know nothing — I replied to myself and to the god: I wish to remain who I am. We do not know — neither the sophists, nor the orators, nor the artists, nor I— what the True, the Good, and the Beautiful are. But there is this difference between us: although these people know nothing, they all believe they know something; whereas, I, if I know nothing, at least have no doubts about it. As a result, all this superiority in wisdom which the oracle has attributed to me reduces itself to the single point that I am strongly convinced that I am ignorant of what I do not know.
Socrates
The centripetal force on our planet is still fearfully strong, Alyosha. I have a longing for life, and I go on living in spite of logic. Though I may not believe in the order of the universe, yet I love the sticky little leaves as they open in spring. I love the blue sky, I love some people, whom one loves you know sometimes without knowing why. I love some great deeds done by men, though I’ve long ceased perhaps to have faith in them, yet from old habit one’s heart prizes them. Here they have brought the soup for you, eat it, it will do you good. It’s first-rate soup, they know how to make it here. I want to travel in Europe, Alyosha, I shall set off from here. And yet I know that I am only going to a graveyard, but it’s a most precious graveyard, that’s what it is! Precious are the dead that lie there, every stone over them speaks of such burning life in the past, of such passionate faith in their work, their truth, their struggle and their science, that I know I shall fall on the ground and kiss those stones and weep over them; though I’m convinced in my heart that it’s long been nothing but a graveyard. And I shall not weep from despair, but simply because I shall be happy in my tears, I shall steep my soul in emotion. I love the sticky leaves in spring, the blue sky — that’s all it is. It’s not a matter of intellect or logic, it’s loving with one’s inside, with one’s stomach.
Fyodor Dostoyevsky (The Brothers Karamazov)
Anyone who lives in her own world is crazy. Like schizophrenics, psychopaths, maniacs. I mean people who are different from others.' Like you?' On the other hand,' Zedka continued, pretending not to have heard the remark, 'you have Einstein, saying that there was no time or space, just a combination of the two. Or Columbus, insisting that on the other side of the world lay not an abyss but a continent. Or Edmund Hillary, convinced that a man could reach the top of Everest. Or the Beatles, who created an entirely different sort of music and dressed like people from another time. Those people--and thousands of others--all lived in their own world.
Paulo Coelho (Veronika Decide Morir - Tapa Azul)
While Adrian was interviewing in the back, I got a table and some coffee. Trey came to visit me after about fifteen minutes. "Is that really your brother?" he demanded. "Yes," I said, hoping I sounded convincing. "When you said he was looking for a job, I pictured a male version of you. I figured he'd want to color code the cups or something." "What's your point?" I asked. Trey shook his head. "My point is that you'd better keep looking. I was just back there and overheard him talking with my manager. She was explaining the cleanup he would have to do each night. Then he said something about his hands and manual labor.
Richelle Mead (Bloodlines (Bloodlines, #1))
Once there was a young warrior. Her teacher told her that she had to do battle with fear. She didn’t want to do that. It seemed too aggressive; it was scary; it seemed unfriendly. But the teacher said she had to do it and gave her the instructions for the battle. The day arrived. The student warrior stood on one side, and fear stood on the other. The warrior was feeling very small, and fear was looking big and wrathful. They both had their weapons. The young warrior roused herself and went toward fear, prostrated three times, and asked, "May I have permission to go into battle with you?" Fear said, "Thank you for showing me so much respect that you ask permission." Then the young warrior said, "How can I defeat you?" Fear replied, "My weapons are that I talk fast, and I get very close to your face. Then you get completely unnerved, and you do whatever I say. If you don’t do what I tell you, I have no power. You can listen to me, and you can have respect for me. You can even be convinced by me. But if you don’t do what I say, I have no power." In that way, the student warrior learned how to defeat fear.
Pema Chödrön (When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times)
People do not drift toward Holiness. Apart from grace-driven effort, people do not gravitate toward godliness, prayer, obedience to Scripture, faith, and delight in the Lord. We drift toward compromise and call it tolerance; we drift toward disobedience and call it freedom; we drift toward superstition and call it faith. We cherish the indiscipline of lost self-control and call it relaxation; we slouch toward prayerlessness and delude ourselves into thinking we have escaped legalism; we slide toward godlessness and convince ourselves we have been liberated.
D.A. Carson
A consequence of female self-love is that the woman grows convinced of social worth. Her love for her body will be unqualified, which is the basis of female identification. If a woman loves her own body, she doesn't grudge what other women do with theirs; if she loves femaleness, she champions its rights. It's true what they say about women: Women are insatiable. We are greedy. Our appetites do need to be controlled if things are to stay in place. If the world were ours too, if we believed we could get away with it, we would ask for more love, more sex, more money, more commitment to children, more food, more care. These sexual, emotional, and physical demands would begin to extend to social demands: payment for care of the elderly, parental leave, childcare, etc. The force of female desire would be so great that society would truly have to reckon with what women want, in bed and in the world.
Naomi Wolf (The Beauty Myth)
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 Dostoyevsky (The Brothers Karamazov)
So the final conclusion would surely be that whereas other civilizations have been brought down by attacks of barbarians from without, ours had the unique distinction of training its own destroyers at its own educational institutions, and then providing them with facilities for propagating their destructive ideology far and wide, all at the public expense. Thus did Western Man decide to abolish himself, creating his own boredom out of his own affluence, his own vulnerability out of his own strength, his own impotence out of his own erotomania, himself blowing the trumpet that brought the walls of his own city tumbling down, and having convinced himself that he was too numerous, labored with pill and scalpel and syringe to make himself fewer. Until at last, having educated himself into imbecility, and polluted and drugged himself into stupefaction, he keeled over--a weary, battered old brontosaurus--and became extinct.
Malcolm Muggeridge (Vintage Muggeridge: Religion and Society)
Without the dark there isn’t light. Without the pain there is no relief. And I remind myself that I’m lucky to be able to feel such great sorrow, and also such great happiness. I can grab on to each moment of joy and live in those moments because I have seen the bright contrast from dark to light and back again. I am privileged to be able to recognize that the sound of laughter is a blessing and a song, and to realize that the bright hours spent with my family and friends are extraordinary treasures to be saved, because those same moments are a medicine, a balm. Those moments are a promise that life is worth fighting for, and that promise is what pulls me through when depression distorts reality and tries to convince me otherwise.
Jenny Lawson (Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things)
Why am I compelled to write?... Because the world I create in the writing compensates for what the real world does not give me. By writing I put order in the world, give it a handle so I can grasp it. I write because life does not appease my appetites and anger... To become more intimate with myself and you. To discover myself, to preserve myself, to make myself, to achieve self-autonomy. To dispell the myths that I am a mad prophet or a poor suffering soul. To convince myself that I am worthy and that what I have to say is not a pile of shit... Finally I write because I'm scared of writing, but I'm more scared of not writing.
Gloria E. Anzaldúa
I never thought of myself as anything but plain and ordinary until you came along. The way you look at me, the way you see me . . . you pull something out of me. When I want to hide, you urge me forward. When I think I’m not good enough, you make me believe I am. When I feel anything but pretty, you convince me I’m beautiful. Just being around you makes me feel special. You don’t think you’re good at loving people, but you are. Your friends, your family . . . the level of love that you have for people astounds me. You don’t think people love you back, but they do. They fiercely love you. I fiercely love you. I’ve never met anyone as passionate as you, as kindhearted as you . . . as amazing as you. You love with every fiber of your soul. You inspire me every day. And if you’ll agree to be my husband, I’ll do my best to make you proud of me, to inspire you.
S.C. Stephens (Reckless (Thoughtless, #3))
Please don't go." He let out an uneven breath. "You'll be fine without me. You always have been." Maybe once, but not now. "How can I convince you to stay?" "You can't." She threw down the torch. "Do you want me to beg, is that it?" "No-never." "Then tell me-" "What more can I say?" he exploded, his whisper rough and harsh "I’ve already told you everything—I’ve already told you that if I stay here, if I have to live with Arobynn, I'll snap his damned neck.” “But why? Why can’t you let it go?” He grabbed her shoulders and shook her. “Because I love you!” Her mouth fell open. “I love you,” he repeated, shaking her again. “I have for years. And he hurt you and made me watch because he’s always known how I felt, too. But if I asked you to pick, you’d choose Arobynn, and I. Can’t. Take. It.” The only sounds were their breathing, an uneven beat against the rushing of the sewer river. “You’re a damned idiot,” she breathed, grabbing the front of his tunic. “You’re a moron and an ass and a damned idiot.” He looked like she had hit him. But she went on, and grasped both sides of his face, "Because I'd pick you." And then she kissed him.
Sarah J. Maas (The Assassin and the Underworld (Throne of Glass, #0.4))
I am convinced that imprisonment is a way of pretending to solve the problem of crime. It does nothing for the victims of crime, but perpetuates the idea of retribution, thus maintaining the endless cycle of violence in our culture. It is a cruel and useless substitute for the elimination of those conditions--poverty, unemployment, homelessness, desperation, racism, greed--which are at the root of most punished crime. The crimes of the rich and powerful go mostly unpunished. It must surely be a tribute to the resilience of the human spirit that even a small number of those men and women in the hell of the prison system survive it and hold on to their humanity.
Howard Zinn (You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train: A Personal History of Our Times)
Don't be like those people who believe in "positive thinking" and tell themselves that they're loved and strong and capable. You don't need to do that because you know it already. And when you doubt it — which happens, I think, quite often at this stage of evolution — do as I suggested. Instead of trying to prove that you're better than you think, just laugh. Laugh at your worries and insecurities. View your anxieties with humor. It will be difficult at first, but you'll gradually get used to it. Now go back and meet all those people who think you know everything. Convince yourself that they're right, because we all know everything, it's merely a question of believing.
Paulo Coelho (The Witch of Portobello)
Alexa and the other guests, and perhaps even Georgina, all understood the fleeing from war, from the kind of poverty that crushed human souls, but they would not understand the need to escape from the oppressive lethargy of choicelessness. They would not understand why people like him who were raised well fed and watered but mired in dissatisfaction, conditioned from birth to look towards somewhere else, eternally convinced that real lives happened in that somewhere else, were now resolved to do dangerous things, illegal things, so as to leave, none of them starving, or raped, or from burned villages, but merely hungry for for choice and certainty.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Americanah)
Jane,' she said, climbing down from the chair. 'Remember last year when I built that model wind tower for you and you wrote those poems for me?' And you said you'd never switch homework assignments with me again.' For good reason. My teacher had a hard time believing I wrote Tra-la the joy of tulips blooming, Ha-ha the thrill of bumblebees zooming. I'm alive and I dance, I'm alive though death is always looming. When I finally convinced her that I had, she asked me if I needed to talk to the school counselor.
Jeanne Birdsall (The Penderwicks on Gardam Street (The Penderwicks, #2))
Hades allowed himself the faintest smile, but there was nothing cruel in his eyes. ‘I can entertain the possibility that you acted for multiple reasons. My point is this: you and I rose to the aid of Olympus because you convinced me to let go of my anger. I would encourage you to do likewise. My children are so rarely happy. I … I would like to see you be an exception.’ Nico stared at his father. He didn’t know what to do with that statement. He could accept many unreal things – hordes of ghosts, magical labyrinths, travel through shadows, chapels made of bones. But tender words from the Lord of the Underworld? No. That made no sense.
Rick Riordan (The Blood of Olympus (The Heroes of Olympus, #5))
You destroy me." "Juliette," he says and he mouths the name, barely speaking at all, and he's pouring molten lava into my limbs and I never even knew I could melt straight to death. "I want you," he says. He says "I want all of you. I want you inside and out and catching your breath and aching for me like I ache for you." He says it like it's a lit cigarette lodged in his throat, like he wants to dip me in warm honey and he says "It's never been a secret. I've never tried to hide that from you. I've never pretended I wanted anything less." "You-you said you wanted f-friendship-" "Yes," he says, he swallows, "I did. I do. I do want to be your friend. He nods and I register the slight movement in the air between us. "I want to be the friend you fall hopelessly in love with. The one you take into your arms and into your bed and into the private world you keep trapped in your head. I want to be that kind of friend," he says. "The one who will memorize the things you say as well as the shape of your lips when you say them. I want to know every curve, every freckle, every shiver of your body, Juliette-" "No," I gasp. "Don't-don't s-say that-" "I want to know where to touch you," he says. "I want to know how to touch you. I want to know how to convince you to design a smile just for me." I feel his chest rising, falling, up and down and up and down and "Yes," he says. "I do want to be your friend." He says "I want to be your best friend in the entire world." "I want so many things," he whispers. "I want your mind. Your strength. I want to be worth your time." His fingers graze the hem of my top and he says "I want this up." He tugs on the waist of my pants and says "I want these down." He touches the tips of his fingers to the sides of my body and says, "I want to feel your skin on fire. I want to feel your heart racing next to mine and I want to know it's racing because of me, because you want me. Because you never," he says, he breathes, "never want me to stop. I want every second. Every inch of you. I want all of it." And I drop dead, all over the floor. "Juliette." I can't understand why I can still hear him speaking because I'm dead, I'm already dead, I've died over and over and over again. He swallows, hard, his chest heaving, his words a breathless, shaky whisper when he says "I'm so-I'm so desperately in love with you-
Tahereh Mafi (Unravel Me (Shatter Me, #2))
If the gospel isn't good news for everybody, then it isn't good news for anybody. And this is because the most powerful things happen when the church surrenders its desire to convert people and convince them to join. It is when the church gives itself away in radical acts of service and compassion, expecting nothing in return, that the way of Jesus is most vividly put on display. To do this, the church must stop thinking about everybody primarily in categories of in or out, saved or not, believer or nonbeliever. Besides the fact that these terms are offensive to those who are the "un" and "non", they work against Jesus' teachings about how we are to treat each other. Jesus commanded us to love our neighbor, and our neighbor can be anybody. We are all created in the image of God, and we are all sacred, valuable creations of God. Everybody matters. To treat people differently based on who believes what is to fail to respect the image of God in everyone. As the book of James says, "God shows no favoritism." So we don't either.
Rob Bell
I know my own reasons for keeping Peeta alive. He's my friend, and this is my way to defy the Capitol, to subvert its terrible Games. But if I had no real ties to him, what would make me want to save him, to choose him over myself? Certainly he is brave, but we have all been brave enough to survive a Games. There is that quality of goodness that's hard to overlook, but stil... and then I think of it, what Peeta can do so much better than the rest of us. He can use words. He obliterated the rest of the field at both interviews. And maybe it's because of that underlying goodness that he can move a crowd--no, a country--to his side with the turn of a simple sentence. I remember thinking that was the gift the leader of our revolution should have. Has Haymitch convinced the others of this? That Peeta's tongue would have far greater power against the Capitol than any physical strength the rest of us could claim? I don't know. It still seems like a really long leap for some of the tributes. I mean, we're talking about Johanna Mason here. But what other explanation can there be for their decided efforts to keep him alive?
Suzanne Collins (Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2))
Daemon was sprawled on his back, one arm stretched across the space beside him and the other rested across his bare stomach. Sheets were twisted around his narrow hips. His face was almost angelic in sleep, chiselled lines softened and lips relaxed. Thick lashes fanned the top of his cheeks. He looked so much younger at rest but, in a weird way, he was even more out of my league. His kind of masculine beauty was otherworldly and intimidating. Something that existed in between the pages of the books I read. Sometimes I had a hard time convincing myself he was real.
Jennifer L. Armentrout (Opal (Lux, #3))
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: "For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered." 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Anonymous (Holy Bible: King James Version)
We live in a world that assumes that the quality of a decision is directly related to the time and effort that went into making it...We believe that we are always better off gathering as much information as possible an depending as much time as possible in deliberation. We really only trust conscious decision making. But there are moments, particularly in times of stress, when haste does not make waste, when our snap judgments and first impressions can offer a much better means of making sense of the world. The first task of Blink is to convince you of a simple fact: decisions made very quickly can be every bit as good as decisions made cautiously and deliberately.
Malcolm Gladwell (Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking)
Once upon a time, powerful wizard, who wanted to destroy an entire kingdom, placed a magic potion in the well from which the inhabitants drank. Whoever drank that water would go mad. The following morning, the whole population drank from the well and they all went mad, apart from the king and his family, who had a well set aside for them alone, which the magician had not managed to poison. The king was worried and tried to control the population by issuing a series of edicts governing security and public health. The policemen and the inspectors, however, had also drunk the poisoned water, and they thought the king’s decisions were absurd and resolved to take notice of them. When the inhabitants of the kingdom heard these decrees, they became convinced that the king had gone mad and was now giving nonsensical orders. The marched on the castle and called for his abdication. In despair the king prepared to step down from the throne, but the queen stopped him, saying: ‘Let us go and drink from the communal well. Then we will be the same as them.’ And that was what they did: The king and queen drank the water of madness and immediately began talking nonsense. Their subjects repented at once; now that the king was displaying such ‘wisdom’, why not allow him to rule the country? The country continued to live in peace, although its inhabitants behaved very differently from those of its neighbors. And the king was able to govern until the end of his days.
Paulo Coelho (Veronika Decides to Die)
Ann Druyan suggests an experiment: Look back again at the pale blue dot of the preceding chapter. Take a good long look at it. Stare at the dot for any length of time and then try to convince yourself that God created the whole Universe for one of the 10 million or so species of life that inhabit that speck of dust. Now take it a step further: Imagine that everything was made just for a single shade of that species, or gender, or ethnic or religious subdivision. If this doesn’t strike you as unlikely, pick another dot. Imagine it to be inhabited by a different form of intelligent life. They, too, cherish the notion of a God who has created everything for their benefit. How seriously do you take their claim?
Carl Sagan (Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space)
It's what you have always wanted to accomplish. Everyone, when they are young, knows what their destiny is. At that point in their lives, everything is clear and everything is possible. They are not afraid to dream, and to yearn for everything they would like to see happen to them in their lives. But, as time passes, a mysterious force begins to convince them that it will be impossible for them to realize their destiny... It's a force that appears to be negative, but actually shows you how to realize your destiny. It prepares your spirit and you will, because there is one great truth on this planet: whoever you are, or whatever it is that you do, when you really want something, it's because that desire originated in the soul of the universe. It's your mission on earth.
Paulo Coelho (The Alchemist)
I know there's no way I can convince you this is not one of their tricks, but I don't care, I am me. My name is Valerie, I don't think I'll live much longer and I wanted to tell someone about my life. This is the only autobiography ill ever write, and god, I'm writing it on toilet paper. I was born in Nottingham in 1985, I don't remember much of those early years, but I do remember the rain. My grandmother owned a farm in Tuttlebrook, and she use to tell me that god was in the rain. I passed my 11th lesson into girl's grammar; it was at school that I met my first girlfriend, her name was Sara. It was her wrists. They were beautiful. I thought we would love each other forever. I remember our teacher telling us that is was an adolescent phase people outgrew. Sara did, I didn't. In 2002 I fell in love with a girl named Christina. That year I came out to my parents. I couldn't have done it without Chris holding my hand. My father wouldn't look at me, he told me to go and never come back. My mother said nothing. But I had only told them the truth, was that so selfish? Our integrity sells for so little, but it is all we really have. It is the very last inch of us, but within that inch, we are free. I'd always known what I wanted to do with my life, and in 2015 I starred in my first film, "The Salt Flats". It was the most important role of my life, not because of my career, but because that was how I met Ruth. The first time we kissed, I knew I never wanted to kiss any other lips but hers again. We moved to a small flat in London together. She grew Scarlet Carsons for me in our window box, and our place always smelled of roses. Those were there best years of my life. But America's war grew worse, and worse. And eventually came to London. After that there were no roses anymore. Not for anyone. I remember how the meaning of words began to change. How unfamiliar words like collateral and rendition became frightening. While things like Norse Fire and The Articles of Allegiance became powerful, I remember how different became dangerous. I still don't understand it, why they hate us so much. They took Ruth while she was out buying food. I've never cried so hard in my life. It wasn't long till they came for me.It seems strange that my life should end in such a terrible place, but for three years, I had roses, and apologized to no one. I shall die here. Every inch of me shall perish. Every inch, but one. An Inch, it is small and it is fragile, but it is the only thing the world worth having. We must never lose it or give it away. We must never let them take it from us. I hope that whoever you are, you escape this place. I hope that the world turns and that things get better. But what I hope most of all is that you understand what I mean when I tell you that even though I do not know you, and even though I may never meet you, laugh with you, cry with you, or kiss you. I love you. With all my heart, I love you. -Valerie
Alan Moore (V for Vendetta)
My dearest Emma," said he, "for dearest you will always be, whatever the event of this hour's conversation, my dearest, most beloved Emma -- tell me at once. Say 'No,' if it is to be said." She could really say nothing. "You are silent," he cried, with great animation; "absolutely silent! at present I ask no more." Emma was almost ready to sink under the agitation of this moment. The dread of being awakened from the happiest dream, was perhaps the most prominent feeling. "I cannot make speeches, Emma," he soon resumed; and in a tone of such sincere, decided, intelligible tenderness as was tolerably convincing. "If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more. But you know what I am. You hear nothing but truth from me. I have blamed you, and lectured you, and you have borne it as no other woman in England would have borne it. Bear with the truths I would tell you now, dearest Emma, as well as you have borne with them. The manner, perhaps, may have as little to recommend them. God knows, I have been a very indifferent lover. But you understand me. Yes, you see, you understand my feelings and will return them if you can. At present, I ask only to hear, once to hear your voice.
Jane Austen (Emma)
I believe it will have become evident why, for me, adjectives such as happy, contented, blissful, enjoyable, do not seem quite appropriate to any general description of this process I have called the good life, even though the person in this process would experience each one of these at the appropriate times. But adjectives which seem more generally fitting are adjectives such as enriching, exciting, rewarding, challenging, meaningful. This process of the good life is not, I am convinced, a life for the faint-fainthearted. It involves the stretching and growing of becoming more and more of one's potentialities. It involves the courage to be. It means launching oneself fully into the stream of life. Yet the deeply exciting thing about human beings is that when the individual is inwardly free, he chooses as the good life this process of becoming.
Carl R. Rogers (On Becoming a Person: A Therapist's View of Psychotherapy)
The contemporary proliferation of bullshit also has deeper sources, in various forms of skepticism which deny that we can have any reliable access to an objective reality and which therefore reject the possibility of knowing how things truly are. These "anti-realist" doctrines undermine confidence in the value of disinterested efforts to determine what is true and what is false, and even in the intelligibility of the notion of objective inquiry. One response to this loss of confidence has been a retreat from the discipline required by dedication to the ideal of correctness to a quite different sort of discipline, which is imposed by pursuit of an alternative ideal of sincerity. Rather than seeking primarily to arrive at accurate representations of a common world, the individual turns toward trying to provide honest representations of himself. Convinced that reality has no inherent nature, which he might hope to identify as the truth about things, he devotes himself to being true to his own nature. It is as though he decides that since it makes no sense to try to be true to the facts, he must therefore try instead to be true to himself. But it is preposterous to imagine that we ourselves are determinate, and hence susceptible both to correct and to incorrect descriptions, while supposing that the ascription of determinacy to anything else has been exposed as a mistake. As conscious beings, we exist only in response to other things, and we cannot know ourselves at all without knowing them. Moreover, there is nothing in theory, and certainly nothing in experience, to support the extraordinary judgment that it is the truth about himself that is the easiest for a person to know. Facts about ourselves are not peculiarly solid and resistant to skeptical dissolution. Our natures are, indeed, elusively insubstantial -- notoriously less stable and less inherent than the natures of other things. And insofar as this is the case, sincerity itself is bullshit.
Harry G. Frankfurt (On Bullshit)
London The Institute Year of Our Lord 1878 “Mother, Father, my chwaer fach, It’s my seventeenth birthday today. I know that to write to you is to break the law, I know that I will likely tear this letter into pieces when it is finished. As I have done on all my birthdays past since I was twelve. But I write anyway, to commemorate the occasion - the way some make yearly pilgrimages to a grave, to remember the death of a loved one. For are we not dead to each other? I wonder if when you woke this morning you remembered that today, seventeen years ago, you had a son? I wonder if you think of me and imagine my life here in the Institute in London? I doubt you could imagine it. It is so very different from our house surrounded by mountains, and the great clear blue sky and the endless green. Here, everything is black and gray and brown, and the sunsets are painted in smoke and blood. I wonder if you worry that I am lonely or, as Mother always used to, that I am cold, that I have gone out into the rain again without a hat? No one here worries about those details. There are so many things that could kill us at any moment; catching a chill hardly seems important. I wonder if you knew that I could hear you that day you came for me, when I was twelve. I crawled under the bed to block out the sound of you crying my name, but I heard you. I heard mother call for her fach, her little one. I bit my hands until they bled but I did not come down. And, eventually, Charlotte convinced you to go away. I thought you might come again but you never did. Herondales are stubborn like that. I remember the great sighs of relief you would both give each time the Council came to ask me if I wished to join the Nephilim and leave my family, and each time I said no and I send them away. I wonder if you knew I was tempted by the idea of a life of glory, of fighting, of killing to protect as a man should. It is in our blood - the call to the seraph and the stele, to marks and to monsters. I wonder why you left the Nephilim, Father? I wonder why Mother chose not to Ascend and to become a Shadowhunter? Is it because you found them cruel or cold? I have no fathom side. Charlotte, especially, is kind to me, little knowing how much I do not deserve it. Henry is mad as a brush, but a good man. He would have made Ella laugh. There is little good to be said about Jessamine, but she is harmless. As little as there is good to say about her, there is as much good to say about Jem: He is the brother Father always thought I should have. Blood of my blood - though we are no relation. Though I might have lost everything else, at least I have gained one thing in his friendship. And we have a new addition to our household too. Her name is Tessa. A pretty name, is it not? When the clouds used to roll over the mountains from the ocean? That gray is the color of her eyes. And now I will tell you a terrible truth, since I never intend to send this letter. I came here to the Institute because I had nowhere else to go. I did not expect it to ever be home, but in the time I have been here I have discovered that I am a true Shadowhunter. In some way my blood tells me that this is what I was born to do.If only I had known before and gone with the Clave the first time they asked me, perhaps I could have saved Ella’s life. Perhaps I could have saved my own. Your Son, Will
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2))
Betrayal is too kind a word to describe a situation in which a father says he loves his daughter but claims he must teach her about the horrors of the world in order to make her a stronger person; a situation in which he watches or participates in rituals that make her feel like she is going to die. She experiences pain that is so intense that she cannot think; her head spins so fast she can't remember who she is or how she got there. All she knows is pain. All she feels is desperation. She tries to cry out for help, but soon learns that no one will listen. No matter how loud she cries, she can't stop or change what is happening. No matter what she does, the pain will not stop. Her father orders her to be tortured and tells her it is for her own good. He tells her that she needs the discipline, or that she has asked for it by her misbehavior. Betrayal is too simple a word to describe the overwhelming pain, the overwhelming loneliness and isolation this child experiences. As if the abuse during the rituals were not enough, this child experiences similar abuse at home on a daily basis. When she tries to talk about her pain, she is told that she must be crazy. "Nothing bad has happened to you;' her family tells her Each day she begins to feel more and more like she doesn't know what is real. She stops trusting her own feelings because no one else acknowledges them or hears her agony. Soon the pain becomes too great. She learns not to feel at all. This strong, lonely, desperate child learns to give up the senses that make all people feel alive. She begins to feel dead. She wishes she were dead. For her there is no way out. She soon learns there is no hope. As she grows older she gets stronger. She learns to do what she is told with the utmost compliance. She forgets everything she has ever wanted. The pain still lurks, but it's easier to pretend it's not there than to acknowledge the horrors she has buried in the deepest parts of her mind. Her relationships are overwhelmed by the power of her emotions. She reaches out for help, but never seems to find what she is looking for The pain gets worse. The loneliness sets in. When the feelings return, she is overcome with panic, pain, and desperation. She is convinced she is going to die. Yet, when she looks around her she sees nothing that should make her feel so bad. Deep inside she knows something is very, very wrong, but she doesn't remember anything. She thinks, "Maybe I am crazy.
Margaret Smith (Ritual Abuse: What it is, Why it Happens, and How to Help)
There has never been a just [war], never an honorable one--on the part of the instigator of the war. I can see a million years ahead, and this rule will never change in so many as half a dozen instances. The loud little handful--as usual--will shout for the war. The pulpit will--warily and cautiously--object--at first; the great, big, dull bulk of the nation will rub its sleepy eyes and try to make out why there should be a war, and will say, earnestly and indignantly, 'It is unjust and dishonorable, and there is no necessity for it.' Then the handful will shout louder. A few fair men on the other side will argue and reason against the war with speech and pen, and at first will have a hearing and be applauded; but it will not last long; those others will outshout them, and presently the anti-war audiences will thin out and lose popularity. Before long you will see this curious thing: the speakers stoned from the platform, and free speech strangled by hordes of furious men who in their secret hearts are still at one with those stoned speakers--as earlier--but do not dare say so. And now the whole nation--pulpit and all--will take up the war-cry, and shout itself hoarse, and mob any honest man who ventures to open his mouth; and presently such mouths will cease to open. Next the statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting the blame upon the nation that is attacked, and every man will be glad of those conscience-soothing falsities, and will diligently study them, and refuse to examine any refutations of them; and thus he will by and by convince himself the war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he enjoys after this process of grotesque self-deception.
Mark Twain (The Mysterious Stranger and Other Stories)
what love looks like what does love look like the therapist asks one week after the breakup and i’m not sure how to answer her question except for the fact that i thought love looked so much like you that’s when it hit me and i realized how naive i had been to place an idea so beautiful on the image of a person as if anybody on this entire earth could encompass all love represented as if this emotion seven billion people tremble for would look like a five foot eleven medium-sized brown-skinned guy who likes eating frozen pizza for breakfast what does love look like the therapist asks again this time interrupting my thoughts midsentence and at this point i’m about to get up and walk right out the door except i paid too much money for this hour so instead i take a piercing look at her the way you look at someone when you’re about to hand it to them lips pursed tightly preparing to launch into conversation eyes digging deeply into theirs searching for all the weak spots they have hidden somewhere hair being tucked behind the ears as if you have to physically prepare for a conversation on the philosophies or rather disappointments of what love looks like well i tell her i don’t think love is him anymore if love was him he would be here wouldn’t he if he was the one for me wouldn’t he be the one sitting across from me if love was him it would have been simple i don’t think love is him anymore i repeat i think love never was i think i just wanted something was ready to give myself to something i believed was bigger than myself and when i saw someone who probably fit the part i made it very much my intention to make him my counterpart and i lost myself to him he took and he took wrapped me in the word special until i was so convinced he had eyes only to see me hands only to feel me a body only to be with me oh how he emptied me how does that make you feel interrupts the therapist well i said it kind of makes me feel like shit maybe we’re looking at it wrong we think it’s something to search for out there something meant to crash into us on our way out of an elevator or slip into our chair at a cafe somewhere appear at the end of an aisle at the bookstore looking the right amount of sexy and intellectual but i think love starts here everything else is just desire and projection of all our wants needs and fantasies but those externalities could never work out if we didn’t turn inward and learn how to love ourselves in order to love other people love does not look like a person love is our actions love is giving all we can even if it’s just the bigger slice of cake love is understanding we have the power to hurt one another but we are going to do everything in our power to make sure we don’t love is figuring out all the kind sweetness we deserve and when someone shows up saying they will provide it as you do but their actions seem to break you rather than build you love is knowing who to choose
Rupi Kaur (The Sun and Her Flowers)
For Jenn At 12 years old I started bleeding with the moon and beating up boys who dreamed of becoming astronauts. I fought with my knuckles white as stars, and left bruises the shape of Salem. There are things we know by heart, and things we don't. At 13 my friend Jen tried to teach me how to blow rings of smoke. I'd watch the nicotine rising from her lips like halos, but I could never make dying beautiful. The sky didn't fill with colors the night I convinced myself veins are kite strings you can only cut free. I suppose I love this life, in spite of my clenched fist. I open my palm and my lifelines look like branches from an Aspen tree, and there are songbirds perched on the tips of my fingers, and I wonder if Beethoven held his breath the first time his fingers touched the keys the same way a soldier holds his breath the first time his finger clicks the trigger. We all have different reasons for forgetting to breathe. But my lungs remember the day my mother took my hand and placed it on her belly and told me the symphony beneath was my baby sister's heartbeat. And I knew life would tremble like the first tear on a prison guard's hardened cheek, like a prayer on a dying man's lips, like a vet holding a full bottle of whisky like an empty gun in a war zone… just take me just take me Sometimes the scales themselves weigh far too much, the heaviness of forever balancing blue sky with red blood. We were all born on days when too many people died in terrible ways, but you still have to call it a birthday. You still have to fall for the prettiest girl on the playground at recess and hope she knows you can hit a baseball further than any boy in the whole third grade and I've been running for home through the windpipe of a man who sings while his hands playing washboard with a spoon on a street corner in New Orleans where every boarded up window is still painted with the words We're Coming Back like a promise to the ocean that we will always keep moving towards the music, the way Basquait slept in a cardboard box to be closer to the rain. Beauty, catch me on your tongue. Thunder, clap us open. The pupils in our eyes were not born to hide beneath their desks. Tonight lay us down to rest in the Arizona desert, then wake us washing the feet of pregnant women who climbed across the border with their bellies aimed towards the sun. I know a thousand things louder than a soldier's gun. I know the heartbeat of his mother. Don't cover your ears, Love. Don't cover your ears, Life. There is a boy writing poems in Central Park and as he writes he moves and his bones become the bars of Mandela's jail cell stretching apart, and there are men playing chess in the December cold who can't tell if the breath rising from the board is their opponents or their own, and there's a woman on the stairwell of the subway swearing she can hear Niagara Falls from her rooftop in Brooklyn, and I'm remembering how Niagara Falls is a city overrun with strip malls and traffic and vendors and one incredibly brave river that makes it all worth it. Ya'll, I know this world is far from perfect. I am not the type to mistake a streetlight for the moon. I know our wounds are deep as the Atlantic. But every ocean has a shoreline and every shoreline has a tide that is constantly returning to wake the songbirds in our hands, to wake the music in our bones, to place one fearless kiss on the mouth of that brave river that has to run through the center of our hearts to find its way home.
Andrea Gibson
One day Dostoevsky threw out the enigmatic remark: "Beauty will save the world". What sort of a statement is that? For a long time I considered it mere words. How could that be possible? When in bloodthirsty history did beauty ever save anyone from anything? Ennobled, uplifted, yes - but whom has it saved? There is, however, a certain peculiarity in the essence of beauty, a peculiarity in the status of art: namely, the convincingness of a true work of art is completely irrefutable and it forces even an opposing heart to surrender. It is possible to compose an outwardly smooth and elegant political speech, a headstrong article, a social program, or a philosophical system on the basis of both a mistake and a lie. What is hidden, what distorted, will not immediately become obvious. Then a contradictory speech, article, program, a differently constructed philosophy rallies in opposition - and all just as elegant and smooth, and once again it works. Which is why such things are both trusted and mistrusted. In vain to reiterate what does not reach the heart. But a work of art bears within itself its own verification: conceptions which are devised or stretched do not stand being portrayed in images, they all come crashing down, appear sickly and pale, convince no one. But those works of art which have scooped up the truth and presented it to us as a living force - they take hold of us, compel us, and nobody ever, not even in ages to come, will appear to refute them. So perhaps that ancient trinity of Truth, Goodness and Beauty is not simply an empty, faded formula as we thought in the days of our self-confident, materialistic youth? If the tops of these three trees converge, as the scholars maintained, but the too blatant, too direct stems of Truth and Goodness are crushed, cut down, not allowed through - then perhaps the fantastic, unpredictable, unexpected stems of Beauty will push through and soar to that very same place, and in so doing will fulfil the work of all three? In that case Dostoevsky's remark, "Beauty will save the world", was not a careless phrase but a prophecy? After all he was granted to see much, a man of fantastic illumination. And in that case art, literature might really be able to help the world today?
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Nobel Lecture)
I used to think Romeo and Juliet was the greatest love story ever written. But now that I’m middle-aged, I know better. Oh, Romeo certainly thinks he loves his Juliet. Driven by hormones, he unquestionably lusts for her. But if he loves her, it’s a shallow love. You want proof?” Cagney didn’t wait for Dr. Victor to say yay or nay. “Soon after meeting her for the first time, he realizes he forgot to ask her for her name. Can true love be founded upon such shallow acquaintance? I don’t think so. And at the end, when he thinks she’s dead, he finds no comfort in living out the remainder of his life within the paradigm of his love, at least keeping alive the memory of what they had briefly shared, even if it was no more than illusion, or more accurately, hormonal. “Those of us watching events unfold from the darkness know she merely lies in slumber. But does he seek the reason for her life-like appearance? No. Instead he accuses Death of amorousness, convinced that the ‘lean abhorred monster’ endeavors to keep Juliet in her present state, her cheeks flushed, so that she might cater to his own dissolute desires. But does Romeo hold her in his arms one last time and feel the warmth of her blood still coursing through her veins? Does he pinch her to see if she might awaken? Hold a mirror to her nose to see if her breath fogs it? Once, twice, three times a ‘no.’” Cagney sighed, listened to the leather creak as he shifted his weight in his chair. “No,” he repeated. “His alleged love is so superficial and selfish that he seeks to escape the pain of loss by taking his own life. That’s not love, but obsessive infatuation. Had they wed—Juliet bearing many children, bonding, growing together, the masks of the star-struck teens they once were long ago cast away, basking in the comforting campfire of a love born of a lifetime together, not devoured by the raging forest fire of youth that consumes everything and leaves behind nothing—and she died of natural causes, would Romeo have been so moved to take his own life, or would he have grieved properly, for her loss and not just his own?
J. Conrad Guest (The Cobb Legacy)