Corrective Action Quotes

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If you are unsure of a course of action, do not attempt it. Your doubts and hesitations will infect your execution. Timidity is dangerous: Better to enter with boldness. Any mistakes you commit through audacity are easily corrected with more audacity. Everyone admires the bold; no one honors the timid.
Robert Greene (The 48 Laws of Power)
As societies grow decadent, the language grows decadent, too. Words are used to disguise, not to illuminate, action: you liberate a city by destroying it. Words are to confuse, so that at election time people will solemnly vote against their own interests.
Gore Vidal
The truth is that nobody is owed an apology for anything. Apologies are lovely when they happen. But they change nothing. They do not reverse actions or correct damage. They are merely nice to hear.
Augusten Burroughs (This Is How: Proven Aid in Overcoming Shyness, Molestation, Fatness, Spinsterhood, Grief, Disease, Lushery, Decrepitude & More. For Young and Old Alike.)
Luck?" Drizzt replied. "Perhaps. But more often, I dare to say, luck is simply the advantage a true warrior gains in excuting the correct course of action.
R.A. Salvatore (The Halfling's Gem (Forgotten Realms: Icewind Dale, #3; Legend of Drizzt, #6))
Learn to distinguish the difference between errors of knowledge and breaches of morality. An error of knowledge is not a moral flaw, provided you are willing to correct it; only a mystic would judge human beings by the standard of an impossible, automatic omniscience. But a breach of morality is the conscious choice of an action you know to be evil, or a willful evasion of knowledge, a suspension of sight and of thought. That which you do not know, is not a moral charge against you; but that which you refuse to know, is an account of infamy growing in your soul. Make every allowance for errors of knowledge; do not forgive or accept any break of morality.
Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)
acquisition of skills requires a regular environment, an adequate opportunity to practice, and rapid and unequivocal feedback about the correctness of thoughts and actions.
Daniel Kahneman (Thinking, Fast and Slow)
The purpose of data is to learn on time what is working and what is not and take any corrective actions according to that.
Pooja Agnihotri (17 Reasons Why Businesses Fail :Unscrew Yourself From Business Failure)
The great news is that God knows everything about you, both good and bad, and He still loves you and values you unconditionally. God does not always approve of our behavior. He is not pleased when we go against his will, and when we do, we always suffer the consequences and have to work with Him to correct our thoughts, words, actions, or attitudes. And while you should work to improve in the areas where you fall short, nothing you do will ever cause God to love you less…or more. His love is a constant you can depend on.
Joel Osteen (Your Best Life Now: 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential)
Waiting for the correct time to descend for cocktails, Mary sat on her bed and reviewed her impressions of the house party one by one. Belinda Choudhry M. P. she knew least. As mother of murdered Perdita, she was sure to be a volatile addition.
Susan Rowland (Murder On Family Grounds: A Mary Wandwalker Mystery)
If I’m ever unsure as to the correct course of action, I’ll think, “What would a ferret do?” or, “How would a salamander respond to this situation?” Invariably, I find the right answer.
Gail Honeyman (Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine)
We are here on this earth to know God intimately, fully, correctly, and contagiously; to house His holy person in our very bodies, allowing Him to showcase to the world around us His loving nature, His attitude, His thoughts, His emotions, and His actions through the way we live every moment of our lives.
Eric Ludy
Struggle is the food from which change is made, and the best time to make the most of a struggle is when it's right in front of your face. Now, I know that might sound a bit simplistic. But, too often we're led to believe that struggling is a bad thing, or that we struggle because we're doing something wrong. I disagree. I look at struggle as an opportunity to grow. True struggle happens when you can sense what is not working for you and you're willing to take the appropriate action to correct the situation. Those who accomplish change are willing to engage the struggle.
Danny Dreyer
He burst into the house and ate Grandma, an entirely valid course of action for a carnivore such as himself.
James Finn Garner
A newspaper is not just for reporting the news as it is, but to make people mad enough to do something about it.
Mark Twain
In general, when we are unsure of ourselves, when the situation is unclear or ambiguous, when uncertainty reigns, we are most likely to look to and accept the actions of others as correct.
Robert B. Cialdini (Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion (Collins Business Essentials))
Is Cade a criminal, a sinner, or a biblical purveyor of justice? Your answer is your own. I cannot say whether or not you made the correct choice.
John M. Vermillion (Awful Reckoning: A Cade Chase and Simon Pack Novel)
Emotions aren't doable. Actions are doable, and if you do them correctly, they prompt the feelings.
Stella Adler (The Art of Acting)
We must all work in harmony with each other to stand up for what is right, to speak up for what is fair, and to always voice any corrections so that the ignorant become informed and justice is never ignored. Every time a person allows an act of ignorance to happen, they delay our progress for true change. Every person, molecule and thing matters. We become responsible for the actions of others the instant we become conscious of what they are doing wrong and fail to remind them of what is right.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
The growing number of gated communities in our nation is but one example of the obsession with safety. With guards at the gate, individuals still have bars and elaborate internal security systems. Americans spend more than thirty billion dollars a year on security. When I have stayed with friends in these communities and inquired as to whether all the security is in response to an actual danger I am told “not really," that it is the fear of threat rather than a real threat that is the catalyst for an obsession with safety that borders on madness. Culturally we bear witness to this madness every day. We can all tell endless stories of how it makes itself known in everyday life. For example, an adult white male answers the door when a young Asian male rings the bell. We live in a culture where without responding to any gesture of aggression or hostility on the part of the stranger, who is simply lost and trying to find the correct address, the white male shoots him, believing he is protecting his life and his property. This is an everyday example of madness. The person who is really the threat here is the home owner who has been so well socialized by the thinking of white supremacy, of capitalism, of patriarchy that he can no longer respond rationally. White supremacy has taught him that all people of color are threats irrespective of their behavior. Capitalism has taught him that, at all costs, his property can and must be protected. Patriarchy has taught him that his masculinity has to be proved by the willingness to conquer fear through aggression; that it would be unmanly to ask questions before taking action. Mass media then brings us the news of this in a newspeak manner that sounds almost jocular and celebratory, as though no tragedy has happened, as though the sacrifice of a young life was necessary to uphold property values and white patriarchal honor. Viewers are encouraged feel sympathy for the white male home owner who made a mistake. The fact that this mistake led to the violent death of an innocent young man does not register; the narrative is worded in a manner that encourages viewers to identify with the one who made the mistake by doing what we are led to feel we might all do to “protect our property at all costs from any sense of perceived threat. " This is what the worship of death looks like.
bell hooks (All About Love: New Visions)
If you do not want what I want, please try not to tell me that my want is wrong. Or if my beliefs are different from yours, at least pause before you set out to correct them. Or if my emotion seems less or more intense than yours, given the same circumstances, try not to ask me to feel other than I do. Or if I act, or fail to act, in the manner of your design for action, please let me be. I do not, for the moment at least, ask you to understand me. That will come only when you are willing to give up trying to change me into a copy of you.
David Keirsey (Please Understand Me II)
Guilt can be a good thing. It's the soul's call to action. The indication that... something is wrong. The only way... to rid your heart of it... is to correct your mistakes and keep going... until amends are made.
Father Lantom, Daredevil
JUST FOR TODAY, I will live through this day only. I will not brood about yesterday or obsess about tomorrow. I will not set far-reaching goals or try to overcome all of my problems at once. I know that I can do something for 24 hours that would overwhelm me if I had to keep it up for a lifetime. JUST FOR TODAY, I will be happy. I will not dwell on thoughts that depress me. If my mind fills with clouds, I will chase them away and fill it with sunshine. JUST FOR TODAY, I will accept what is. I will face reality. I will correct those things that I can correct and accept those I cannot. JUST FOR TODAY, I will improve my mind. I will read something that requires effort, thought and concentration. I will not be a mental loafer. JUST FOR TODAY, I will make a conscious effort to be agreeable. I will be kind and courteous to those who cross my path, and I'll not speak ill of others. I will improve my appearance, speak softly, and not interrupt when someone else is talking. Just for today, I will refrain from improving anybody but myself. JUST FOR TODAY, I will do something positive to improve my health. If I'm a smoker, I'll quit. If I'm overweight, I will eat healthfully -- if only for today. And not only that, I will get off the couch and take a brisk walk, even if it's only around the block. JUST FOR TODAY, I will gather the courage to do what is right and take the responsibility for my own actions.
Abigail Van Buren
We are free to choose our actions, based on our knowledge of correct principles, but we are not free to choose the consequences of those actions. Remember, “If you pick up one end of the stick, you pick up the other.
Stephen R. Covey (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change)
The widely accepted assertion that, only if you let markets be will everyone be paid correctly and thus fairly, according to his worth, is a myth. Only when we part with this myth and grasp the political nature of the market and the collective nature of individual productivity will we be able to build a more just society in which historical legacies and collective actions, and not just individual talents and efforts, are properly taken into account in deciding how to reward people.
Ha-Joon Chang (23 Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism)
The kind of people that say “political correctness gone mad” are usually using that phrase as a kind of cover action to attack minorities or people that they disagree with. [...] And I’m sick, I’m really sick– 84% of you in this room that have agreed with this phrase, you’re like those people who turn around and go, “you know who the most oppressed minorities in Britain are? White, middle-class men.” You’re a bunch of idiots.
Stewart Lee
Action is the activity of the rational soul, which abhors irrationality and must combat it or be corrupted by it. When it sees the irrationality of others, it must seek to correct it, and can do this either by teaching or engaging in public affairs itself, correcting through its practice. And the purpose of action is to enable philosophy to continue, for if men are reduced to the material alone, they become no more than beasts.
Iain Pears (The Dream of Scipio)
We are not called to fight the battles of our fathers with a blind faith. We are called to examine their wars, and moreover, to discern whether their actions were sinful or just. Furthermore, we are called to decide whether to correct the errors of our fathers battles through either peace, war, or some combination of the two. We are not bonded to our fathers' fate, but rather called to build on their trespasses or triumphs for a better future.
Kent Marrero
A boy was watching his grandmother write a letter. At one point he asked: ‘Are you writing a story about what we’ve done? Is it a story about me?’ His grandmother stopped writing her letter and said to her grandson: I am writing about you, actually, but more important than the words is the pencil I’m using. I hope you will be like this pencil when you grow up.’ Intrigued, the boy looked at the pencil. It didn’t seem very special. ‘But it’s just like any other pencil I’ve ever seen!’ ‘That depends on how you look at things. It has five qualities which, if you manage to hang on them, will make you a person who is always at peace with the world.’ ‘First quality: you are capable of great things, but you must never forget that there is a hand guiding your steps. We call that hand God, and He always guides us according to His will.’ ‘Second quality: now and then, I have to stop writing and use a sharpner. That makes the pencil suffer a little, but afterwards, he’s much sharper. So you, too, must learn to bear certain pains and sorrows, because they will make you a better person. ‘Third quality: the pencil always allows us to use an eraser to rub out any mistakes. This means that correcting something we did is not necessarily a bad thing; it helps to keep us on the road to justice.’ ‘Fourth quality: what really matters in a pencil is not its wooden exterior, but the graphite inside. So always pay attention to what is happening inside you.’ ‘Finally, the pencil’s fifth quality: it always leaves a mark. in just the same way, you should know that everything you do in life will leave a mark, so try to be conscious of that in your every action
Paulo Coelho (Like the Flowing River)
POLISH your MIND to reflect the shimmering BEAUTY of your WORDS and ACTIONS.
Michael Bassey Johnson
If I’m ever unsure as to the correct course of action, I’ll think, “What would a ferret do?
Gail Honeyman (Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine)
By spiritually I merely mean that I feel I have good in my soul and am inclined to follow the correct course of action given a prescribed set of circumstances.
Jasper Fforde
...all that is necessary to right action is right judgment, and to the best action the most correct judgment
René Descartes (Discourse on Method)
We stand at the crossroads, each minute, each hour, each day, making choices. We choose the thoughts we allow ourselves to think, the passions we allow ourselves to feel, and the actions we allow ourselves to perform. Each choice is made in the context of whatever value system we have selected to govern our lives. In selecting that value system, we are, in a very real way, making the most important choice we will ever make. Those who believe there is one God who made all things and who governs the world by this providence will make many choices different from those who do not. Those who hold in reverence that being who gave them life and worship Him through adoration, prayer, and thanksgiving will make choices different from those who do not. Those who believe that mankind are all of a family and that the most acceptable service of God is doing good to man will make many choices different from those who do not. Those who believe in a future state in which all that is wrong here will be made right will make many choices different from those who do not. Those who subscribe to the morals of Jesus will make many choices different from those who do not. Since the foundation of all happiness is thinking rightly, and since correct action is dependent on correct opinion, we cannot be too careful in choosing the value system we allow to govern our thoughts and actions. And to know that God governs in the affairs of men, that He hears and answers prayers, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him, is, indeed, a powerful regulator of human conduct.
Benjamin Franklin (the Art of Virtue: His Formula for Successful Living)
How you correct your mistakes will define your character and commitment to a higher power.
Shannon L. Alder
Problems are often life’s way of letting you know that you’re off course and need to take corrective action.
Jeff Keller (Attitude Is Everything: Change Your Attitude... Change Your Life!)
We need to ask God for forgiveness and do all we can to correct whatever harm our actions may have caused. Repentance means a change of mind and heart—we stop doing things that are wrong, and we start doing things that are right. It brings us a fresh attitude toward God, oneself, and life in general.
Dieter F. Uchtdorf
Remember that anything important can't really be learned in the classroom. It must be learned by taking action, making mistakes, and then correcting them. That's when wisdom sets in.
Robert T. Kiyosaki (Rich Dad's CASHFLOW QUADRANT)
Everyone defends his treasure, and will do so automatically.The real questions are, what do you treasure, and how much do you treasure it? Once you have learned to consider these questions and to bring them into all your actions, you will have little difficulty in clarifying the means. The means are available whenever you ask. You can, however, save time if you do not protract this step unduly. The correct focus will shorten it immeasurably.
Helen Shucman (A Course in Miracles, Combined Volume: Text, Workbook for Students, Manual for Teachers)
The finest defense of character is correct action. Acquaint yourself with virtue, and you can expect proper treatment from those around you.
Brandon Sanderson (The Way of Kings, Part 1 (The Stormlight Archive, #1, Part 1 of 2))
We are taught to understand, correctly, that courage is not the absence of fear, but the capacity for action despite our fears.
John McCain
When we retire at night, we constructively review our day. Were we resentful, selfish, dishonest or afraid? Do we owe an apology? Have we kept something to ourselves which should be discussed with another person at once? Were we kind and loving toward all? What could we have done better? Were we thinking of ourselves most of the time? Or were we thinking of what we could do for others, of what we could pack into the stream of life? But we must be careful not to drift into worry, remorse or morbid reflection, for that would diminish our usefulness to others. After making our review we ask God’s forgiveness and inquire what corrective measures should be taken. On awakening let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead. We consider our plans for the day. Before we begin, we ask God to direct our thinking, especially asking that it be divorced from self-pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives. Under these conditions we can employ our mental faculties with assurance, for after all God gave us brains to use. Our thought-life will be placed on a much higher plane when our thinking is cleared of wrong motives. In thinking about our day we may face indecision. We may not be able to determine which course to take. Here we ask God for inspiration, an intuitive thought or a decision. We relax and take it easy. We don’t struggle. We are often surprised how the right answers come after we have tried this for a while. What used to be the hunch or the occasional inspiration gradually becomes a working part of the mind. Being still inexperienced and having just made conscious contact with God, it is not probable that we are going to be inspired at all times. We might pay for this presumption in all sorts of absurd actions and ideas. Nevertheless, we find that our thinking will, as time passes, be more and more on the plane of inspiration. We come to rely upon it. We usually conclude the period of meditation with a prayer that we be shown all through the day what our next step is to be, that we be given whatever we need to take care of such problems. We ask especially for freedom from self-will, and are careful to make no request for ourselves only. We may ask for ourselves, however, if others will be helped. We are careful never to pray for our own selfish ends. Many of us have wasted a lot of time doing that and it doesn’t work. You can easily see why.
Bill Wilson
Once you are in power, never forget those who put you there. Deal with those who think they can do better than you and those who think you are god's representative on earth. Deal with each other according to his actions
Bangambiki Habyarimana (Pearls Of Eternity)
Maybe time is nothing at all like a straight line. Perhaps it's shaped like a twisted doughnut. But for tens of thousands of years, people have probably been seeing time as a straight line that continues on forever. And that's the concept they based their actions on. And until now they haven't found anything inconvenient or contradictory about it. So as an experiential model, it's probably correct.
Haruki Murakami (1Q84 (1Q84, #1-3))
Many will notice the change in your attitude, and make judgements, call you names – arrogant, Ill tempered. But only a select few will see beyond and notice the hurt, pain, rejection that triggered the anger, and activated your defence in the form of changed attitude. And of these few who notice, barely exceptional ones, will care enough to act and see their contribution to your pain – apologise or take corrective actions, to help your heart heal. To find someone who understands your emotions so well and does not define you by your outbursts or your temper, but instead sees the factors that trigger those reactions in you, even when they are at the receiving end, is nothing less than a miracle.
Drishti Bablani, Wordions
If you retain the joyous aftereffects of meditation throughout the day, or part of the day, you will see that this joy will correctly guide you in everything. Saints are guided by this joy, in the consciousness of which no erroneous actions are possible. Retain the acquired joy of meditation throughout the day.
Paramahansa Yogananda
Frightened people want action more than they want correct action. It’s in the data.
Marcus Sakey (A Better World (Brilliance Saga, #2))
Your character is not to be judged by the mistakes you make – but your ability to hold yourself accountable, interrogate your actions and come back with the correct behaviour.
Florence Given (Women Don't Owe You Pretty)
Thinking deeply about your choices and actions from the stance of your future self can serve as both a motivational and a corrective force.
Cheryl Strayed (Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Someone Who's Been There)
Interestingly, schizophrenics can tickle themselves because of a problem with their timing that does not allow their motor actions and resulting sensations to be correctly sequenced.
David Eagleman (Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain)
Dear 2600: …So, in the interest of information gathering and because I am a subscriber, are you going to be checking me out? This would be unnecessary since we checked you out before you subscribed. That’s why we made sure you heard about us and followed the plan by subscribing. Writing this letter, however, was not part of the plan and we will be taking corrective action.
Emmanuel Goldstein (Dear Hacker: Letters to the Editor of 2600)
Abraham’s willingness to plunge a dagger through the heart of his young son because God, without any explanation, ordered it. We learn in this story that the correctness of an action was not judged by such considerations as apparent senselessness, harmfulness, injustice, or usual moral standards, but by the mere command of a higher authority.
Robert B. Cialdini (Influence: Science and Practice)
A president who justifies his actions to the public might be induced to change them. A president who justifies his actions to himself, believing that he has the truth, is impervious to self-correction.
Carol Tavris (Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts)
One of the easiest things in life is to judge others. One of the simplest things we can ever do is to tell how wrong people are. One of the most thoughtless things we can ever do is to show people their faults unconstructively. It is always so easy and common to do such things but, before you do that, find the uncommon reasons for the faulty life.Yes! before you do that, identify how to correct a faulty life and before you do that, think of what drives and invokes the joy, slothfulness or the melancholy in people. Until you go through what people have been through, until you experience what has become a part of people, until you understand what drives the real interest of people and until you become fully aware of the real vision, aspirations, desires and the needs of others, ponder before you criticize!
Ernest Agyemang Yeboah
The balancing feedback loop that should keep the system state at an acceptable level is overwhelmed by a reinforcing feedback loop heading downhill. The lower the perceived system state, the lower the desired state. The lower the desired state, the less discrepancy, and the less corrective action is taken. The less corrective action, the lower the system state. If this loop is allowed to run unchecked, it can lead to a continuous degradation in the system’s performance.
Donella H. Meadows (Thinking in Systems: A Primer)
from the Basement tapes Eric outdid Dylan with the apologies. To the untrained eye, he seemed sincere. The psychologists on the case found Eric less convincing. They saw a psychopath. Classic. He even pulled the stunt of self-diagnosing to dismiss it. "I wish I was a fucking sociopath so I didn't have any remorse," Eric said. "But I do." Watching that made Dr. Fuselier angry. Remorse meant a deep desire to correct a mistake. Eric hadn't done it yet. He excused his actions several times on the tapes. Fuselier was tough to rattle, but that got to him. "Those are the most worthless apologies I've ever heard in my life," he said. It got more ludicrous later, when Eric willed some of his stuff to two buddies, "if you guys live." "If you live?" Fuselier repeated. "They are going to go in there and quite possibly kill their friends. If they were the least bit sorry they would not do it!
Dave Cullen (Columbine)
Whenever you take an action,Decide by both your brain and heart in equal proportions .Balance them as far as possible.
Bikash Bhandari
Never apologize for correct actions.
R.J. Lawrence (The Xactilias Project)
It is scarcely the same thing to put a man on the Moon as to put a bone in your nose.
William A. Henry III (In Defense of Elitism)
We are not confused, it's just the conflict between what we say and what we do.
Muhammad Zaki
Correct thoughts will generate correct courses of action, which leads to favorable results. Wrong thoughts will lead to wrong courses of action, which brings about bad results.
Frank Miller (Secrets On Reversal Trading: Master Reversal Techniques In Less Than 3 days)
To speak truth, sir, I don't understand you at all: I cannot keep up the conversation, because it has got out of my depth. Only one thing I know: you said you were not as good as you should like to be, and that you regretted your own imperfection--one thing I can comprehend: you intimated that to have a sullied memory was a perpetual bane. It seems to me, that if you tried hard, you would in time find it possible to become what you yourself would approve; and that if from this day you began with resolution to correct your thoughts and actions, you would in a few years have laid up a new and stainless store of recollections, to which you might revert with pleasure.
Charlotte Brontë (Jane Eyre)
Animals, birds and insects can provide such useful insights. If I’m ever unsure as to the correct course of action, I’ll think, “What would a ferret do?” or, “How would a salamander respond to this situation?” Invariably, I find the right answer.
Gail Honeyman (Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine)
Karma means ‘action’. Like many, you misunderstand its nature. Past misdeeds can be corrected before your karma ripens: it is not some pre-determined fate. It is what you do now that counts.
John Dolan (Everyone Burns (Time, Blood and Karma, #1))
In the Age of Perfect Virtue, men lived among the animals and birds as members of one large family. There were no distinctions between "superior" and "inferior" to separate one man or species from another. All retained their natural Virtue and lived in the state of pure simplicity...In the Age of Perfect Virtue, wisdom and ability were not singled out as extraordinary. The wise were seen merely as higher branches on humanity's tree, growing a little closer to the sun. People behaved correctly, without knowing that to be Righteousness and Propriety. They loved and respected each other, without calling that Benevolence. They were faithful and honest, without considering that to be Loyalty. They kept their word, without thinking of Good Faith. In their everyday conduct, they helped and employed each other, without considering Duty. They did not concern themselves with Justice, as there was no injustice. Living in harmony with themselves, each other, and the world, their actions left no trace, and so we have no physical record of their existence.
Benjamin Hoff (The Te of Piglet)
Humans have a very clear idea about how to behave, and on many occasions actually do. But it’s sometimes disheartening that correct action is drowned out by endless chitter-chatter, designed not to find a way forward but to justify petty jealousies and illogically held prejudices. If you’re going to talk, try to make it relevant, useful and progressive rather than simply distracting and time-wasting nonsense, intended only to justify the untenable and postpone the real dialogue that needs to happen.
Jasper Fforde (The Constant Rabbit)
1. Mistargeting by setting objectives that are too low and don't allow for enough correct motivation. 2. Severely underestimating what it will take in terms of actions, resources, money, and energy to accomplish the target. 3. Spending too much time competing and not enough time dominating their sector. 4. Underestimating the amount of adversity they will need to overcome in order to actually attain their desired goal.
Grant Cardone (The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure)
You give me offense, and I take it. I take offense to the fact that you would stand here and belittle Simone’s beliefs and her work to correct what she feels are grave wrongs when you take no action to fight for your beliefs. It is one thing to compare or even belittle sacred truths when both parties are working toward rectifying wrongs. But it is quite another to rail against a person who is doing something when you do nothing.
Penny Reid (Ninja at First Sight (Knitting in the City, #4.75))
Internet trolling wasn’t just a symptom, it was a canary. Trolls tested the boundaries of how far society would allow racism, misogyny, and transphobia to be normalized. Would anyone do anything? Would anyone take action? Would anyone powerful take this seriously? The answer turned out to be no. Those of us on the receiving end begged for help, and were told to grow a thicker skin, because the Internet “isn’t real life.” Until, surprise, the Internet became president, and we as a society were so inured to hate speech—our boundaries had been so thoroughly obliterated and “political correctness” so stigmatized—that we had no defense. There
Lindy West (Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman)
We live in a moment in which old conflicts, much altered during their subterraneous years, have boiled up again. The struggle to own the past so that it can be made to serve contemporary interests has led to gross distortions. But it is true also that the experience of any generation is inevitably a warped lens through which to view the thought and the actions of any previous generation, especially when there is a lack of rigorous historical perspective to correct for these distortions. This second consideration may go some way toward explaining the fact that there are not two sides to what would otherwise be a great national controversy.
Marilynne Robinson (When I Was a Child I Read Books)
Humans have a very clear idea about how to behave, and on many occasions actually do. But it’s sometimes disheartening that correct action is drowned out by endless chitter-chatter, designed not to find a way forward but to justify petty jealousies and illogically held prejudices.
Jasper Fforde (The Constant Rabbit)
One reason why the cycle of archetypes recurs is that each youth generation tries to correct or compensate for what it perceives as the excesses of the midlife generation in power. For example, Boomers (a Prophet generation, whose strength is individualism, culture and values) raised Millennial children (a Hero generation, whose strength is in collective civic action). Archetypes do not create archetypes like themselves, they create opposing archetypes. Your generation isn’t like the generation that shaped you, but it has much in common with the generation that shaped the generation that shaped you.
William Strauss
Kusha, settling into the driver’s seat of the truck, gazes vacantly in the air. Is it safe to go now? (a) Yes (b) No: she wonders and soon finds the answer with her intuition-like alarm. It’s easy to pick the right one when the options are only two. “Yes. It’s safe.” “I love your intuition!” Taha says. “It’s unfair you don’t tell me the war hero action-figure winning numbers.” She makes a sad face. She saw how Kusha correctly guessed the High Auction’s ticket number one digit at a time. If you have a lottery-guessing sister, it’s hard not to feel excited.
Misba (The High Auction (Wisdom Revolution, #1))
I once interviewed a New Age guru who spoke about how unfinished business from ancestors can trickle down to generations twice, even three times, removed. Actions in the present can help to correct the mistakes made in the past. And even if there is no absolution to be had, an understanding may help keep the same mistake from being repeated.
Sejal Badani (The Storyteller's Secret)
He shook his head in exasperation. “Are you sure you’re not a Succubus? You seem really obsessed with the sin of lust.” “It’s a good sin. I like gluttony an awful lot, too. Sloth has its moments, but I just don’t understand acedia at all. I mean, what the f**k is that anyway? Oh, and greed is good, to quote Gordon Gekko. Anger, envy and pride,” I ticked them off on my fingers. “I don’t often have much use for them. It’s a shortcoming that I’m hoping to correct in the next millennium or two. I’m not very old; I can’t be expected to have mastered them all yet.” “I think you’ve worked too hard on some of those,” he said dryly. “Maybe you should switch over to virtues instead. Give yourself a much needed break.” Virtues? Yeah, right. “Virtues are too difficult,” I told him, shaking my head. “Look how old you are and you’ve hardly made a dent in them. I’ll admit, you seem to have zeal nailed, as well as faith and temperance. Self control? I’ve got my doubts based on your recent actions. I’m not seeing the kindness, love or generosity, either. That humility thing seems to be pretty far beyond your reach, too. Really, really far. I’m sorry to tell you this, but from what I can see, the sin of pride is a major component of your character. Dude, you’re f**king old. You should have these things pretty well ticked off your shopping list by now. I’m seriously disappointed. Seriously.
Debra Dunbar (A Demon Bound (Imp, #1))
The realms of dating, marriage, and sex are all marketplaces, and we are the products. Some may bristle at the idea of people as products on a marketplace, but this is an incredibly prevalent dynamic. Consider the labor marketplace, where people are also the product. Just as in the labor marketplace, one party makes an offer to another, and based on the terms of this offer, the other person can choose to accept it or walk. What makes the dating market so interesting is that the products we are marketing, selling, buying, and exchanging are essentially our identities and lives. As with all marketplaces, every item in stock has a value, and that value is determined by its desirability. However, the desirability of a product isn’t a fixed thing—the desirability of umbrellas increases in areas where it is currently raining while the desirability of a specific drug may increase to a specific individual if it can cure an illness their child has, even if its wider desirability on the market has not changed. In the world of dating, the two types of desirability we care about most are: - Aggregate Desirability: What the average demand within an open marketplace would be for a relationship with a particular person. - Individual Desirability: What the desirability of a relationship with an individual is from the perspective of a specific other individual. Imagine you are at a fish market and deciding whether or not to buy a specific fish: - Aggregate desirability = The fish’s market price that day - Individual desirability = What you are willing to pay for the fish Aggregate desirability is something our society enthusiastically emphasizes, with concepts like “leagues.” Whether these are revealed through crude statements like, “that guy's an 8,” or more politically correct comments such as, “I believe she may be out of your league,” there is a tacit acknowledgment by society that every individual has an aggregate value on the public dating market, and that value can be judged at a glance. When what we have to trade on the dating market is often ourselves, that means that on average, we are going to end up in relationships with people with an aggregate value roughly equal to our own (i.e., individuals “within our league”). Statistically speaking, leagues are a real phenomenon that affects dating patterns. Using data from dating websites, the University of Michigan found that when you sort online daters by desirability, they seem to know “their place.” People on online dating sites almost never send a message to someone less desirable than them, and on average they reach out to prospects only 25% more desirable than themselves. The great thing about these markets is how often the average desirability of a person to others is wildly different than their desirability to you. This gives you the opportunity to play arbitrage with traits that other people don’t like, but you either like or don’t mind. For example, while society may prefer women who are not overweight, a specific individual within the marketplace may prefer obese women, or even more interestingly may have no preference. If a guy doesn’t care whether his partner is slim or obese, then he should specifically target obese women, as obesity lowers desirability on the open marketplace, but not from his perspective, giving him access to women who are of higher value to him than those he could secure within an open market.
Malcolm Collins (The Pragmatist's Guide to Relationships: Ruthlessly Optimized Strategies for Dating, Sex, and Marriage)
The man who has lost his instincts and does not recognize the obligation Nature has given him cannot hope for any corrective action on Nature’s part until he restores his lost instincts by clear intellectual awareness. Once he understands, then he must face the task of making the necessary amends by bringing back what was lost. There is a great danger that once a man no longer sees his duty clearly, he will continue to tear down the racial barriers until the last remaining shred of his best part is finally lost. Then there would be nothing left but a uniform racial mush, which appears to be the ideal sought by our “wonderful world-reformers” today. However this puree mix would soon drive all ideals from the world. True, a group of great size might be formed in that way because a herd animal can be unnaturally combined, but no such mixture can ever produce a man who can carry a culture or a man who can be a cultural founder and creator. The mission of mankind could then be considered at an end. Anyone who does not want the earth to approach that condition must accept that it is the task, especially of the German State, to be sure, above everything, that all further bastardization is stopped.
Adolf Hitler (Mein Kampf)
We have to accept that any action we take might promote an equal and opposite reaction that we do not want. We have to realize that even the most noble actions or most obviously correct course can have its dark side that we cannot control or reason our way out of. The fighter of the "just war" must understand that her actions will result in the deaths of other humans; many of whom may be innocent. The pacifist who refuses all war must realize that his inaction might likewise result in the deaths of the innocent. There are no actions without contradiction—and yet we must act, for not to act is also a contradictory action with both positive and negative effects.
John Hunter (World Peace and Other 4th-Grade Achievements)
Advancing the agenda of America’s wealthiest winners under such circumstances would ordinarily be a hard sell. After all, in 2011, twenty-four million Americans were still out of work. The Great Recession had wiped out some $9 trillion in household wealth. But after forty years, the conservative nonprofit ecosystem had grown quite adept at waging battles of ideas. The think tanks, advocacy groups, and talking heads on the right sprang into action, shaping a political narrative that staved off the kind of course correction that might otherwise have been expected.
Jane Mayer (Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right)
In the original form of the word, to worry someone else was to harass, strangle, or choke them. Likewise, to worry oneself is a form of self-harassment. To give it less of a role in our lives, we must understand what it really it is. Worry is the fear we manufacture—it is not authentic. If you choose to worry about something, have at it, but do so knowing it’s a choice. Most often, we worry because it provides some secondary reward. There are many variations, but a few of the most popular follow. Worry is a way to avoid change; when we worry, we don’t do anything about the matter. Worry is a way to avoid admitting powerlessness over something, since worry feels like we’re doing something. (Prayer also makes us feel like we’re doing something, and even the most committed agnostic will admit that prayer is more productive than worry.) Worry is a cloying way to have connection with others, the idea being that to worry about someone shows love. The other side of this is the belief that not worrying about someone means you don’t care about them. As many worried-about people will tell you, worry is a poor substitute for love or for taking loving action. Worry is a protection against future disappointment. After taking an important test, for example, a student might worry about whether he failed. If he can feel the experience of failure now, rehearse it, so to speak, by worrying about it, then failing won’t feel as bad when it happens. But there’s an interesting trade-off: Since he can’t do anything about it at this point anyway, would he rather spend two days worrying and then learn he failed, or spend those same two days not worrying, and then learn he failed? Perhaps most importantly, would he want to learn he had passed the test and spent two days of anxiety for nothing? In Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman concludes that worrying is a sort of “magical amulet” which some people feel wards off danger. They believe that worrying about something will stop it from happening. He also correctly notes that most of what people worry about has a low probability of occurring, because we tend to take action about those things we feel are likely to occur. This means that very often the mere fact that you are worrying about something is a predictor that it isn’t likely to happen!
Gavin de Becker (The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence)
Lydia was like this all the time. I mean, the more I opened up to her, was a model patient or whatever, the icier she got, correcting pretty much everything out of my mouth and at least half of my silent actions as well. But the thing was that her near-constant admonitions actually made me like her more. I think because witnessing her administration of ten zillion rules and codes of conduct, all of which she applied to her own life, made her seem fragile and weak, in need of the constant protection of all those rules, instead of the opposite, the way I know that she wanted to be seen, the way I’d seen her when I first arrived: powerful and all knowing.
Emily M. Danforth (The Miseducation of Cameron Post)
Ever since Roberta Wohlstetter’s pathbreaking study of why the United States was taken by surprise at Pearl Harbor 50 years ago, both academics and members of the Intelligence Community (IC) have made significant progress in understanding intelligence failures. About how to correct these errors and do better we know much less, however, and it is to this subject that this volume makes a major contribution. --Foreword to Cases in Intelligence Analysis: Structured Analytic Techniques in Action
Robert Jervis
We must all work in harmony with each other to stand up for what is right, to speak up for what is fair, and to always voice any corrections – so that the ignorant become informed and justice is never ignored. Every time a person allows an act of ignorance to happen (one ignorant word, thought or action), they delay our progress for TRUE CHANGE. Every person, molecule, and thing matters. We become responsible for the actions of others the instant we become conscious of what they are doing wrong.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
Although quite correctly the name of Niccolò Machiavelli is to be associated with such a break between politics and morality, the Florentine was only the first of several political theorists who worked to furnish the ruling class its morally invulnerable position. In particular, Giovanni Botero, in his 1589 book La Ragion di Stato, was the first to openly argue that, for the safety of the State, men may legitimately perform actions that would be considered crimes were they committed with other purposes or by people not empowered by such a noble institution.
Hans-Hermann Hoppe (The Myth of National Defense: Essays on the Theory and History of Security Production)
Welcome the disagreement. Remember the slogan, ‘When two partners always agree, one of them is not necessary.’ If there is some point you haven’t thought about, be thankful if it is brought to your attention. Perhaps this disagreement is your opportunity to be corrected before you make a serious mistake. Distrust your first instinctive impression. Our first natural reaction in a disagreeable situation is to be defensive. Be careful. Keep calm and watch out for your first reaction. It may be you at your worst, not your best. Control your temper. Remember, you can measure the size of a person by what makes him or her angry. Listen first. Give your opponents a chance to talk. Let them finish. Do not resist, defend or debate. This only raises barriers. Try to build bridges of understanding. Don’t build higher barriers of misunderstanding. Look for areas of agreement. When you have heard your opponents out, dwell first on the points and areas on which you agree. Be honest. Look for areas where you can admit error and say so. Apologize for your mistakes. It will help disarm your opponents and reduce defensiveness. Promise to think over your opponents’ ideas and study them carefully. And mean it. Your opponents may be right. It is a lot easier at this stage to agree to think about their points than to move rapidly ahead and find yourself in a position where your opponents can say: ‘We tried to tell you, but you wouldn’t listen.’ Thank your opponents sincerely for their interest. Anyone who takes the time to disagree with you is interested in the same things you are. Think of them as people who really want to help you, and you may turn your opponents into friends. Postpone action to give both sides time to think through the problem. Suggest that a new meeting be held later that day or the next day, when all the facts may be brought to bear. In preparation for this meeting, ask yourself some hard questions:
Dale Carnegie (How to Win Friends and Influence People)
To forgive oneself does not negate the need to undo mistakes. True forgiveness desires to make things right. Making things right is not equivalent to guilt. The need to undo mistakes cannot be replaced by guilt. In fact, being immobilised by guilt is an avoidance of fixing things up. It makes one powerless and gives one an excuse to remain passive and negligent. To continuously feel guilty over wrong doing is both ego-confirmatory and ineffective in correcting bad karma. Guilt is the initial spur to action. Then we act in order to correct both our thoughts and the karma, and we leave the guilt behind.
Donna Goddard (The Love of Devotion)
Many of our white brothers misunderstand this fact because many of them fail to interpret correctly the nature of the Negro Revolution. Some believe that it is the work of skilled agitators who have the power to raise or lower the floodgates at will. Such a movement, maneuverable by a talented few, would not be a genuine revolution. This Revolution is genuine because it was born from the same womb that always gives birth to massive social upheavals--the womb of intolerable conditions and unendurable situations. In this time and circumstance, no leader or set of leaders could have acted as ringmasters, whipping a whole race out of purring contentment into leonine courage and action. If such credit is to be given to any single group, it might well go to the segregationists, who, with their callous and cynical code, helped to arouse and ignite the righteous wrath of the Negro.
Martin Luther King Jr. (Why We Can't Wait)
The tacit assumption of the advanced welfare state is correct when human beings face starvation or death by exposure. Then, food and shelter are all that count. But in an advanced society, the needs for food and shelter can be met in a variety of ways, and at that point human needs can no longer be disaggregated. The ways in which food and shelter are obtained affects whether the other human needs are met. People need self-respect, but self-respect must be earned—it cannot be self-respect if it’s not earned—and the only way to earn anything is to achieve it in the face of the possibility of failing. People need intimate relationships with others, but intimate relationships that are rich and fulfilling need content, and that content is supplied only when humans are engaged in interactions that have consequences. People need self-actualization, but self-actualization is not a straight road, visible in advance, running from point A to point B. Self-actualization intrinsically requires an exploration of possibilities for life beyond the obvious and convenient. All of these good things in life—self-respect, intimate relationships, and self-actualization—require freedom in the only way that freedom is meaningful: freedom to act in all arenas of life coupled with responsibility for the consequences of those actions. The underlying meaning of that coupling—freedom and responsibility—is crucial. Responsibility for the consequences of actions is not the price of freedom, but one of its rewards. Knowing that we have responsibility for the consequences of our actions is a major part of what makes life worth living.
Charles Murray (Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010)
Another experiment, conducted by Pascual-Leone when he was a researcher at the National Institutes of Health, provides even more remarkable evidence of the way our patterns of thought affect the anatomy of our brains. Pascual-Leone recruited people who had no experience playing a piano, and he taught them how to play a simple melody consisting of a short series of notes. He then split the participants into two groups. He had the members of one group practice the melody on a keyboard for two hours a day over the next five days. he had the members of the other group sit in front of a keyboard for the same amount of time but only imagine playing the song--without ever touching the keys. Using a technique called transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS, Pascual-Leone mapped the brain activity of all the participants before, during, and after the test. he found that the people who had only imagined playing the notes exhibited precisely the same changes in their brains as those who had actually pressed the keys. Their brains had changed in response to actions that took place purely in their imaginations--in response, that is, to their thoughts. Descartes may have been wrong about dualism, but he appears to have been correct in believing that our thoughts can exert a physical influence on, or at least cause a physical reaction in, our brains. We become, neurologically, what we think. (p33)
Nicholas Carr
I am a center in the Divine Mind, a point of God-conscious life, truth and action. My affairs are divinely guided and guarded into right action, into correct results. Everything I do, say or think, is stimulated by the Truth. There is power in this word that I speak, because it is of the Truth and it is the Truth. There is perfect and continuous right action in my life and my affairs. All belief in wrong action is dispelled and made negative. Right action alone has power and right action is power, and Power is God... the Living Spirit Almighty. This Spirit animates everything that I do, say or think. Ideas come to me daily and these ideas are divine ideas. They direct me and sustain me without effort. I am continuously directed. I am compelled to do the right thing at the right time, to say the right word at the right time, to follow the right course at all times. “All suggestion of age, poverty, limitation or unhappiness is uprooted from my mind and cannot gain entrance to my thought. I am happy, well and filled with perfect Life. I live in the Spirit of Truth and am conscious that the Spirit of Truth lives in me. My word is the law unto its own manifestation, and will bring to me or cause me to be brought to its fulfillment. There is no unbelief, no doubt, no uncertainty. I know and I know that I know. Let every thought of doubt vanish from my mind that I may know the Truth and the Truth may make me free.
Ernest Shurtleff Holmes (The Science of Mind: The Definitive Edition)
Thinking, even when thinking is difficult, versus nonthinking Awareness, even when awareness is challenging, versus unawareness Clarity, whether or not it comes easily, versus obscurity or vagueness Respect for reality, whether pleasant or painful, versus avoidance of reality Respect for truth versus rejection of truth Independence versus dependence Active orientation versus passive orientation Willingness to take appropriate risks, even in the face of fear, versus unwillingness Honesty with self versus dishonesty Living in and being responsible to the present versus retreating into fantasy Self-confrontation versus self-avoidance Willingness to see and correct mistakes versus perseverance in error Reason versus irrationalism
Nathaniel Branden (How to Raise Your Self-Esteem: The Proven Action-Oriented Approach to Greater Self-Respect and Self-Confidence)
When I was ten years old, one of my friends brought a Shaleenian kangaroo-cat to school one day. I remember the way it hopped around with quick, nervous leaps, peering at everything with its large, almost circular golden eyes. One of the girls asked if it was a boy cat or a girl cat. Our instructor didn't know; neither did the boy who had brought it; but the teacher made the mistake of asking, 'How can we find out?' Someone piped up, 'We can vote on it!' The rest of the class chimed in with instant agreement and before I could voice my objection that some things can't be voted on, the election was held. It was decided that the Shaleenian kangaroo-cat was a boy, and forthwith, it was named Davy Crockett. Three months later, Davy Crockett had kittens. So much for democracy. It seems to me that if the electoral process can be so wrong about such a simple thing, isn't it possible for it to be very, very wrong on much more complex matters? We have this sacred cow in our society that what the majority of people want is right—but is it? Our populace can't really be informed, not the majority of them—most people vote the way they have been manipulated and by the way they have responded to that manipulation—they are working out their own patterns of wishful thinking on the social environment in which they live. It is most disturbing to me to realize that though a majority may choose a specific course of action or direction for itself, through the workings of a 'representative government,' they may be as mistaken about the correctness of such a choice as my classmates were about the sex of that Shaleenian kangaroo-cat. I'm not so sure than an electoral government is necessarily the best.
David Gerrold (Star Hunt (Star Wolf, #1))
In Wegner’s studies, participants are asked to try hard not to think about something, such as a white bear, or food, or a stereotype. This is hard to do. More important, the moment one stops trying to suppress a thought, the thought comes flooding in and becomes even harder to banish. In other words, Wegner creates minor obsessions in his lab by instructing people not to obsess. Wegner explains this effect as an “ironic process” of mental control. 32 When controlled processing tries to influence thought (“Don’t think about a white bear!”), it sets up an explicit goal. And whenever one pursues a goal, a part of the mind automatically monitors progress, so that it can order corrections or know when success has been achieved. When that goal is an action in the world (such as arriving at the airport on time), this feedback system works well. But when the goal is mental, it backfires. Automatic processes continually check: “Am I not thinking about a white bear?” As the act of monitoring for the absence of the thought introduces the thought, the person must try even harder to divert consciousness. Automatic and controlled processes end up working at cross purposes, firing each other up to ever greater exertions. But because controlled processes tire quickly, eventually the inexhaustible automatic processes run unopposed, conjuring up herds of white bears. Thus, the attempt to remove an unpleasant thought can guarantee it a place on your frequent-play list of mental ruminations.
Jonathan Haidt (The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom)
As all this suggests our relationship with evidence is seldom purely a cognitive one. Vilifying menstruating women bolstering anti-Muslim stereotypes murdering innocent citizens of Salem plainly evidence is almost always invariably a political social and moral issue as well. To take a particularly stark example consider the case of Albert Speer minister of armaments and war production during the Third Reich close friend to Adolf Hitler and highest-ranking Nazi official to ever express remorse for his actions. In his memoir Inside the Third Reich Speer candidly addressed his failure to look for evidence of what was happening around him. "I did not query a friend who told him not to visit Auschwitz I did not query Himmler I did not query Hitler " he wrote. "I did not speak with personal friends. I did not investigate for I did not want to know what was happening there... for fear of discovering something which might have made me turn away from my course. I had closed my eyes." Judge William Stoughton of Salem Massachusetts became complicit in injustice and murder by accepting evidence that he should have ignored. Albert Speer became complicit by ignoring evidence he should have accepted. Together they show us some of the gravest possible consequences of mismanaging the data around us and the vital importance of learning to manage it better. It is possible to do this: like in the U.S. legal system we as individuals can develop a fairer and more consistent relationship to evidence over time. By indirection Speer himself shows us how to begin. I did not query he wrote. I did not speak. I did not investigate. I closed my eyes. This are sins of omission sins of passivity and they suggest correctly that if we want to improve our relationship with evidence we must take a more active role in how we think must in a sense take the reins of our own minds. To do this we must query and speak and investigate and open our eyes. Specifically and crucially we must learn to actively combat our inductive biases: to deliberately seek out evidence that challenges our beliefs and to take seriously such evidence when we come across it.
Kathryn Schulz (Being Wrong: Adventures in the Margin of Error)
Take terrorism, one example among the methods used in that struggle. We know that leftist tradition condemns terrorism and political assassination. When the colonized uses them, the leftist colonizer becomes unbearably embarrassed. He makes an effort to separate them from the colonized's voluntary action; to make an epiphenomenon out of his struggle. They are spontaneous outbursts of masses too long oppressed, or better yet, acts by unstable, untrustworthy elements which the leader of the movement has difficulty in controlling. Even in Europe, very few people admitted that the oppression of the colonized was so great, the disproportion of forces so overwhelming, that they had reached the point, whether morally correct or not, of using violent means voluntarily. The leftist colonizer tried in vain to explain actions which seemed incomprehensible, shocking and politically absurd. For example, the death of children and persons outside of the struggle, or even of colonized persons who, without being basically opposed, disapproved of some small aspect of the undertaking. At first he was so disconcerted that the best he could do was to deny such actions; for they would fit nowhere in his view of the problem. That it could be the cruelty of oppression which explained the blind fury of the reaction hardly seemed to be an argument to him; he can't approve acts of the colonized which he condemns in the colonizers because these are exactly why he condemns colonization. Then, after having suspected the information to be false, he says, as a last resort, that such deeds are errors, that is, they should not belong to the essence of the movement. He bravely asserts that the leaders certainly disapprove of them. A newspaper-man who always supported the cause of the colonized, weary of waiting for censure which was not forthcoming, finally called on certain leaders to take a public stand against the outrages, Of course, received no reply; he did not have the additional naïveté to insist.
Albert Memmi (The Colonizer and the Colonized)
People who are starving and dressed in rags don’t want to hear someone read a list of propositional “good news.” They want to see the good news in action. The church doesn’t hold revival meetings and call it a day — we feed the hungry, clothe the naked, dig wells, and staff medical clinics. Social action isn’t an optional part of evangelism; it is evangelism. This is an important correction to the overspirituality that dominated evangelical Christianity just a generation ago. But the both/and of holistic mission still misses the heart of Jesus if we don’t see that the church needs the poor as much as the poor need the church. Jesus didn’t embrace the poor only because he pitied them or because he knew he had the resources to help them. Jesus embraced the poor because they were rushing into the kingdom ahead of the scribes and Pharisees — those who called themselves God’s people. Jesus welcomed people who knew poverty because they were ready to receive what he had to offer. Religious people, he said, could learn something from them. Our spiritual lives are linked to the material conditions of our life. When we feel like we don’t need much materially, we often have trouble remembering why we need God. We comfortable Americans can go through an entire day without thinking of God. But Jesus gave the poor more than food to eat and relief from their sickness. He restored them to God’s beloved community.
Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove (God's Economy: Redefining the Health and Wealth Gospel)
Since the very beginning of the Communist regime, I had carefully studied books on Marxism and pronouncements by Chinese Communist Party leaders. It seemed to me that socialism in China was still very much an experiment nad had no fixed course of development for the country had yet been decided upon. This, I thought, was why the government's policy was always changing, like a pendulum swinging from left to right and back again. When things went to extremes and problems emerged. Beijing would take corrective measures. Then these very corrective measures went too far and had to be corrected. The real difficulty was, of course, that a state-controlled economy only stifled productivity, and economic planning from Beijing ignored local conditions and killed incentive. When a policy changed from above, the standards of values changed with it. What was right yesterday became wrong today, and visa versa. Thus the words and actions of a Communist Party official at the lower level were valid for a limited time only... The Cultural Revolution seemed to me to be a swing to the left. Sooner or later, when it had gone too far, corrective measures would be taken. The people would have a few months or a few years of respite until the next political campaign. Mao Zedong believed that political campaigns were the motivating force for progress. So I thought the Proletarian Cultural Revolution was just one of an endless series of upheavals the Chinese people must learn to put up with.
Nien Cheng (Life and Death in Shanghai)
Qu'est-ce que le roman, en effet, sinon cet univers où l'action trouve sa forme, où les mots de la fin sont prononcés, les êtres livrés aux êtres, où toute vie prend le visage du destin. Le monde romanesque n'est que la correction de ce monde-ci, suivant le désir profond de l'homme. Car il s'agit bien du même monde. La souffrance est la même, le mensonge et l'amour. Les héros ont notre langage, nos faiblesses, nos forces. Leur univers n'est ni plus beau ni plus édifiant que le nôtre. Mais eux, du moins, courent jusqu'au bout de leur destin, et il n'est même jamais de si bouleversants héros que ceux qui vont jusqu'à l'extrémité de leur passion.[...] Voici donc un monde imaginaire, mais créé par la correction de celui-ci, un monde où la douleur peut, si elle le veut, durer jusqu'à la mort, où les passions ne sont jamais distraites, où les êtres sont livrés à l'idée fixe et toujours présents les uns aux autres. L'homme s'y donne enfin à lui-même la forme et la limite apaisante qu'il poursuit en vain dans sa condition. Le roman fabrique du destin sur mesure. C'est ainsi qu'il concurrence la création et qu'il triomphe, provisoirement, de la mort.
Albert Camus (The Rebel)
This difference between Eastern and Western education can be traced to the disparity that divides Muslim immigrants from their children. Islamic cultures tend to establish people of high status as authorities whereas the authority in Western culture is reason itself. These alternative seats of authority permeate the mind, determining the moral outlook of whole societies. When authority is derived from position rather than reason, the act of questioning leadership is dangerous because it has the potential to upset the system. Dissention is reprimanded and obedience in rewarded. Correct and incorrect courses of action are assessed socially, not individually. A person’s virtue is thus determined by how well he meets social expectations, not by an individual determination of right and wrong. Thus positional authority yields a society that determines right and wrong based on honor and shame. On the other hand, when authority is derived from reason, questions are welcome because critical examination sharpens the very basis of authority. Each person is expected to criticially examine his own course of action. Correct and incorrect courses of action are assessed individually. A person’s virtue is determined by whether he does what he knows to be right and wrong. Rational authority creates a society which determines right and wrong based on innocence and guilt. Much of the West’s inability to understand the East stems from the paradigmatic schism between honor/ shame cultures and innocence/ guilt cultures. Of course, the matter is quite complex, and elements of both paradigms are present in both the East and the West. But the honor/ shame spectrum is the operative paradigm that drives the East and it is hard for Westerners to understand.
Nabeel Qureshi (Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus: A Devout Muslim Encounters Christianity)
Wrapped up in all of this talk of acceptance and tolerance is the matter of judgment. The worst thing in the world, we are told, is to judge. We must never judge, never be judgmental. We are constantly reminded that Jesus said, “Do not judge” (Matthew 7:1). And those three words have become the most popular words ever uttered by Our Lord. We like to pretend that everything else He said is summarized by this one phrase. We treat “Do not judge” as the distillation of His life and ministry. There are over seven hundred thousand words in the Bible (yes, I counted), and we have come to believe that they all can be condensed down into those three. We’re wrong. Yes, He does tell us not to judge. But to understand what “Do not judge” actually means, and how it ought to apply to our lives, we have to look at those words in the context of Christ’s teachings. We don’t even have to look very hard, because He makes the point clear in the very same chapter of the Bible. Here is the full verse from the seventh chapter of Matthew: Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, “Let me take the speck out of your eye,” when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye. The point here is that we must judge rightly and fairly, as Jesus says specifically in John 7:24: “Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly.” The whole Bible is chock-full of judgments we are told to make about ourselves, about others, about actions and things and situations. Of course Jesus is not warning against judgment per se. He is warning, instead, against hypocritical and self-serving judgments. He says we must attend to the plank in our own eyes rather than focusing on the dust in our brother’s eye. But He does not recommend that we just leave our brother there to deal with the dust on his own. He tells us to take the plank out of our own eyes first and then help with the dust. This is both a practical and moral prescription. Moral because ignoring your plank would be self-righteous and dishonest. Practical because you cannot see well enough to handle the dust problem if you’ve got a big plank sticking in your eye. Judgment is good. We are commanded to judge. But our judgments themselves must be good, and made out of love and concern for our brother.
Matt Walsh (Church of Cowards: A Wake-Up Call to Complacent Christians)
Jack took two steps towards the couch and then heard his daughter’s distressed wails, wincing. “Oh, right. The munchkin.” He instead turned and headed for the stairs, yawning and scratching his messy brown hair, calling out, “Hang on, chubby monkey, Daddy’s coming.” Jack reached the top of the stairs. And stopped dead. There was a dragon standing in the darkened hallway. At first, Jack swore he was still asleep. He had to be. He couldn’t possibly be seeing correctly. And yet the icy fear slipping down his spine said differently. The dragon stood at roughly five feet tall once its head rose upon sighting Jack at the other end of the hallway. It was lean and had dirty brown scales with an off-white belly. Its black, hooked claws kneaded the carpet as its yellow eyes stared out at Jack, its pupils dilating to drink him in from head to toe. Its wings rustled along its back on either side of the sharp spines protruding down its body to the thin, whip-like tail. A single horn glinted sharp and deadly under the small, motion-activated hallway light. The only thing more noticeable than that were the many long, jagged scars scored across the creature’s stomach, limbs, and neck. It had been hunted recently. Judging from the depth and extent of the scars, it had certainly killed a hunter or two to have survived with so many marks. “Okay,” Jack whispered hoarsely. “Five bucks says you’re not the Easter Bunny.” The dragon’s nostrils flared. It adjusted its body, feet apart, lips sliding away from sharp, gleaming white teeth in a warning hiss. Mercifully, Naila had quieted and no longer drew the creature’s attention. Jack swallowed hard and held out one hand, bending slightly so his six-foot-two-inch frame was less threatening. “Look at me, buddy. Just keep looking at me. It’s alright. I’m not going to hurt you. Why don’t you just come this way, huh?” He took a single step down and the creature crept forward towards him, hissing louder. “That’s right. This way. Come on.” Jack eased backwards one stair at a time. The dragon let out a warning bark and followed him, its saliva leaving damp patches on the cream-colored carpet. Along the way, Jack had slipped his phone out of his pocket and dialed 9-1-1, hoping he had just enough seconds left in the reptile’s waning patience. “9-1-1, what’s your emergency?” “Listen to me carefully,” Jack said, not letting his eyes stray from the dragon as he fumbled behind him for the handle to the sliding glass door. He then quickly gave her his address before continuing. “There is an Appalachian forest dragon in my house. Get someone over here as fast as you can.” “We’re contacting a retrieval team now, sir. Please stay calm and try not to make any loud noises or sudden movements–“ Jack had one barefoot on the cool stone of his patio when his daughter Naila cried for him again. The dragon’s head turned towards the direction of upstairs. Jack dropped his cell phone, grabbed a patio chair, and slammed it down on top of the dragon’s head as hard as he could.
Kyoko M. (Of Fury & Fangs (Of Cinder & Bone, #4))