Destroying Family Quotes

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When his life was ruined, his family killed, his farm destroyed, Job knelt down on the ground and yelled up to the heavens, "Why god? Why me?" and the thundering voice of God answered, There's just something about you that pisses me off.
Stephen King (Storm of the Century)
I received the fundamentals of my education in school, but that was not enough. My real education, the superstructure, the details, the true architecture, I got out of the public library. For an impoverished child whose family could not afford to buy books, the library was the open door to wonder and achievement, and I can never be sufficiently grateful that I had the wit to charge through that door and make the most of it. Now, when I read constantly about the way in which library funds are being cut and cut, I can only think that the door is closing and that American society has found one more way to destroy itself.
Isaac Asimov (I. Asimov)
No kid in the world, no woman in the world should ever raise a hand against a no-good daddy. That's already been taken care of: A Man Who Destroys His Own Home Shall Inherit the Wind.
Dick Gregory
In Britain, a cup of tea is the answer to every problem. Fallen off your bicycle? Nice cup of tea. Your house has been destroyed by a meteorite? Nice cup of tea and a biscuit. Your entire family has been eaten by a Tyrannosaurus Rex that has travelled through a space/time portal? Nice cup of tea and a piece of cake. Possibly a savoury option would be welcome here too, for example a Scotch egg or a sausage roll.
David Walliams (Mr Stink)
Then I know Prim is right, that Snow cannot afford to waste Peeta's life, especially now, while the Mockingjay causes so much havoc. He's killed Cinna already. Destroyed my home. My family, Gale, and even Haymitch are out of his reach. Peeta's all he has left. "So, what do you think they'll do to him?" I ask. Prim sound about a thousand years old when she speaks."Whatever it takes to break you.
Suzanne Collins
In a society in which nearly everybody is dominated by somebody else's mind or by a disembodied mind, it becomes increasingly difficult to learn the truth about the activities of governments and corporations, about the quality or value of products, or about the health of one's own place and economy. In such a society, also, our private economies will depend less and less upon the private ownership of real, usable property, and more and more upon property that is institutional and abstract, beyond individual control, such as money, insurance policies, certificates of deposit, stocks, and shares. And as our private economies become more abstract, the mutual, free helps and pleasures of family and community life will be supplanted by a kind of displaced or placeless citizenship and by commerce with impersonal and self-interested suppliers... Thus, although we are not slaves in name, and cannot be carried to market and sold as somebody else's legal chattels, we are free only within narrow limits. For all our talk about liberation and personal autonomy, there are few choices that we are free to make. What would be the point, for example, if a majority of our people decided to be self-employed? The great enemy of freedom is the alignment of political power with wealth. This alignment destroys the commonwealth - that is, the natural wealth of localities and the local economies of household, neighborhood, and community - and so destroys democracy, of which the commonwealth is the foundation and practical means.
Wendell Berry (The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays)
Then I realize from the hollow sound of her gun's click that her gun isn't loaded. Apparently she just wants to slap me around with it. The Girl doesn't move her gun away. "How old are you?" "Fifteen." "That's better." The Girl lowers her gun a little. "Time for a few confessions.Were you responsible for the break-in at the Arcadia bank?" The ten-second place. "Yes." "Then you must be responsible for stealing sixteen thousand five hundred Notes from there as well." "You got that right." "Were you responsible for vandalizing the Department of Intra-Defense two years ago, and destroying the engines of two warfront airships?" "Yes." "Did you set fire to a series of ten F-472 fighter jets parked at the Burbank air force base right before they were to head out to the warfront?" "I'm kinda proud of that one." "Did assault a cadet standing guard at the edge of the Alta sector's quarantine zone?" "I tied him up and delivered food to some quarantined families.Bite me.
Marie Lu (Legend (Legend, #1))
In order to get the things I want, it helps me to pretend I’m a figure in a daytime drama, a schemer. Soap opera characters make emphatic pronouncements. They ball up their fists and state their goals out loud. ‘I will destroy Buchanan Enterprises,’ they say. ‘Phoebe Wallingford will pay for what she’s done to our family.’ Walking home with the back half of the twelve-foot ladder, I turned to look in the direction of Hugh’s loft. ‘You will be mine,’ I commanded.
David Sedaris (Me Talk Pretty One Day)
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)
In your palms, I’ve placed my life, my secrets. I give you freedom to leave me at any time. I’m not easy to love. No one ever has. All I ask is that you always keep your silence, if not for me, then for the families of the others you’d destroy. (Nykyrian)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Born of the Night (The League, #1))
Armel shrugged. "I suppose so, Brother, but why do creatures have to fight?" Demple picked Mudge up and placed him on his shoulder. "Because there's always good and bad in the land, and goodbeasts have to protect their friends an' families from evil ones who want nothing but to conquer an' destroy.
Brian Jacques (Rakkety Tam (Redwall, #17))
What a cruel thing is war: to separate and destroy families and friends, and mar the purest joys and happiness God has granted us in this world; to fill our hearts with hatred instead of love for our neighbors, and to devastate the fair face of this beautiful world.
Robert E. Lee
Every gay person must come out. As difficult as it is, you must tell your immediate family. You must tell your relatives. You must tell your friends if indeed they are your friends. You must tell the people you work with. You must tell the people in the stores you shop in. Once they realize that we are indeed their children, that we are indeed everywhere, every myth, every lie, every innuendo will be destroyed once and all. And once you do, you will feel so much better
Harvey Milk
Clary curled up on the ground seeing in front of her not the shell of a destroyed town but the eyes of the brother and the sister that she would never have.
Cassandra Clare (City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6))
Brother dear,” I said, “did your soul leave your body while Amos was talking, or did you actually hear him? Egyptian gods real. Red Lord bad. Red Lord’s birthday: very soon, very bad. House of Life: fussy magicians who hate our family because dad was a bit of a rebel, whom you could take a lesson from. Which leaves us—just us—with Dad missing, an evil god about to destroy the world, and an uncle who just jumped off the building—and I can’t actually blame him.” I took a breath. [Yes, Carter, I do have to breathe occasionally.]
Rick Riordan (The Red Pyramid (The Kane Chronicles, #1))
Sometimes it's the ones closest to us who can destroy us the most. Sometimes it's friends...family. It's not always a romantic relationship that can leave us with a broken heart. -Gage
Shanora Williams (Who He Is (FireNine, #1))
Everyone knows im perfect. My life is perfect. My clothes are perfect. Even my family is perfect. And although its a complete lie, i've worked my butt off to keep up the appearence that i have it all. The truth, if it were to come out, would destroy my entire picture-perfect image.
Simone Elkeles (Perfect Chemistry (Perfect Chemistry, #1))
Dear Child, Sometimes on your travel through hell, you meet people that think they are in heaven because of their cleverness and ability to get away with things. Travel past them because they don't understand who they have become and never will. These type of people feel justified in revenge and will never learn mercy or forgiveness because they live by comparison. They are the people that don't care about anyone, other than who is making them feel confident. They don’t understand that their deity is not rejoicing with them because of their actions, rather he is trying to free them from their insecurities, by softening their heart. They rather put out your light than find their own. They don't have the ability to see beyond the false sense of happiness they get from destroying others. You know what happiness is and it isn’t this. Don’t see their success as their deliverance. It is a mask of vindication which has no audience, other than their own kind. They have joined countless others that call themselves “survivors”. They believe that they are entitled to win because life didn’t go as planned for them. You are not like them. You were not meant to stay in hell and follow their belief system. You were bound for greatness. You were born to help them by leading. Rise up and be the light home. You were given the gift to see the truth. They will have an army of people that are like them and you are going to feel alone. However, your family in heaven stands beside you now. They are your strength and as countless as the stars. It is time to let go! Love, Your Guardian Angel
Shannon L. Alder
Words have power," Isaac answered. Words begin and end wars. They create and destroy families. They break hearts. They heal them. If you have the right words, there's nothin on earth you can't do." - Crave the Moon
Lori Handeland (Crave the Moon (Nightcreature #11))
A man like Dmitry was never irate. His coldness was only reflected in the manner in which he destroyed.
Latrivia S. Nelson (Dmitry's Closet (The Medlov Crime Family, #1))
It is not permissible for us to go on destroying the family life when we know that we are destroying it.
Alan Paton (Cry, The Beloved Country)
Our immortality comes through our children and their children. Through our roots and branches. The family is immortality. And Hitler has destroyed not just branches and roots, but entire family trees, forests. All of them, gone.
Amy Harmon (From Sand and Ash)
Meg turned and gazed out the rear windshield, probably checking for any shiny blobs pursuing us. “At least we’re not being—” “Don’t say it,” Percy warned. Meg huffed. “You don’t know what I was going to—” “You were going to say, ‘At least we’re not being followed,’” Percy said. “That’ll jinx us. Immediately we’ll notice that we are being followed. Then we’ll end up in a big battle that totals my family car and probably destroys the whole freeway. Then we’ll have to run all the way to camp.” Meg’s eyes widened. “You can tell the future?” "Don’t need to.” Percy changed lanes to one that was crawling slightly less slowly. “I’ve just done this a lot.
Rick Riordan (The Hidden Oracle (The Trials of Apollo, #1))
They couldn’t break me because … because they never touched that innermost part of me. They never even guessed. But I hid it … I’ve hidden it because …” She tilted back her head, looking skyward. “Because I live in terror of my family finding out—and shaming me, hurting me about this one thing that has remained wholly mine. This one part of me. I won’t let them … won’t let them destroy it. Or
Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #3))
Yeah, my parents are crappy, but you hurt either of my sisters and I will spend my life finding ways to destroy you.
Patrick Ness
Destroy superabundance. Starve the flesh, shave the hair, clarify the mind, define the will, restrain the senses, leave the family, flee the church, kill the vermin,vomit the heart, forget the dead. Limit time, forgo amusement, deny nature, reject acquaintances, discard objects, forget truths, dissect myth, stop motion, block impulse, choke sobs, swallow chatter. Scorn joy, scorn touch, scorn tragedy, scorn liberty, scorn constancy, scorn hope, scorn exaltation, scorn reproduction, scorn variety, scorn embellishment, scorn release, scorn rest, scorn sweetness, scorn light. It's a question of form as much as function. It is a matter of revulsion.
Jenny Holzer
It is interesting to note that the "sexual revolution" was sometimes portrayed as a communal utopia, whereas in fact it was simply another stage in the historical rise of individualism. As the lovely word "household" suggests, the couple and the family would be the last bastion of primitive communism in liberal society. The sexual revolution was to destroy these intermediary communities, the last to separate the individual from the market. The destruction continues to this day.
Michel Houellebecq (The Elementary Particles)
Don’t destroy yourself over somebody else’s foolishness. I know they betrayed you. I know they lied on you. I know they talked behind your back and told all of your business. I know they hurt you to the core. I know they turned their back on you. I know they cheated on you. I know they mislead you. I know, I KNOW. In spite of it all, you have to know that you are worth more than what they dished out to you. You will survive! You will make it through! Remember who YOU are and know YOUR self-worth!
Stephanie Lahart
Freedom will destroy itself if it is not exercised within some sort of moral framework, some body of shared beliefs, some spiritual heritage transmitted through the Church, the family, and the school.
Margaret Thatcher
You don’t know anyone at the party, so you don’t want to go. You don’t like cottage cheese, so you haven’t eaten it in years. This is your choice, of course, but don’t kid yourself: it’s also the flinch. Your personality is not set in stone. You may think a morning coffee is the most enjoyable thing in the world, but it’s really just a habit. Thirty days without it, and you would be fine. You think you have a soul mate, but in fact you could have had any number of spouses. You would have evolved differently, but been just as happy. You can change what you want about yourself at any time. You see yourself as someone who can’t write or play an instrument, who gives in to temptation or makes bad decisions, but that’s really not you. It’s not ingrained. It’s not your personality. Your personality is something else, something deeper than just preferences, and these details on the surface, you can change anytime you like. If it is useful to do so, you must abandon your identity and start again. Sometimes, it’s the only way. Set fire to your old self. It’s not needed here. It’s too busy shopping, gossiping about others, and watching days go by and asking why you haven’t gotten as far as you’d like. This old self will die and be forgotten by all but family, and replaced by someone who makes a difference. Your new self is not like that. Your new self is the Great Chicago Fire—overwhelming, overpowering, and destroying everything that isn’t necessary.
Julien Smith (The Flinch)
I am two women: one wants to have all the joy, passion & adventure that life can give me. The other wants to be a slave to routine, to family life, to the things that can be planned and achieved. I'm a housewife & a prostitute, both of us living in the same body & doing battle with each other. The meeting of these two women is a game with serious risks. A divine dance. When we meet, we are two divine energies, two universes colliding. If the meeting is not carried out with due reverence, one universe destroys the other.
Paulo Coelho
Positive. In other news, Marcie's throwing a Halloween party here at the farmhouse." Patch smiled. "Grey - Millar family drama?" "The theme is famous couples from history. Could she be any less original? Worse, she's roped my mom into this. They went shopping for decorations today. For three whole hours. It's like they're suddenly best friends." I picked up another apple slice and made a face at it. "Marcie is ruining everything. I wanted Scott to go with Vee, but Marcie already convinced him to go with her." Patch's smile widened. I aimed my best sulky look at him. "This isn't funny. Marcie is destroying my life. Whose side are you on anyway?" Patch raised his hands in surrender. "I'm staying out of this.
Becca Fitzpatrick (Finale (Hush, Hush, #4))
Facts do not find their way into the world in which our beliefs reside; they did not produce our beliefs, they do not destroy them; they may inflict on them the most constant refutations without weakening them, and an avalanche of afflictions or ailments succeeding one another without interruption in a family will not make it doubt the goodness of its God or the talent of its doctor.
Marcel Proust (Swann's Way)
You would destroy your own grandfather?" I asked. Medea shrugged. "Why not? You gods are all family, but you're constantly trying to kill each other." I hate it when evil sorceresses have a point.
Rick Riordan (The Burning Maze (The Trials of Apollo, #3))
Everyone believes that nothing concerns them until the monsters are knocking on their doors!” She winces at my shriek, but I do not care. “Until they are burning down your homes and destroying your lives and killing your families!
Sabaa Tahir (A Reaper at the Gates (An Ember in the Ashes, #3))
Every single courageous act of coming out chips away at the curse of homophobia. Most importantly it's destroyed within yourself, and that act creates the potential for its destruction where it exists in friends, family and society.
Anthony Venn-Brown OAM (A Life of Unlearning - a journey to find the truth)
Have I mentioned that I expect death around every turn, that every blue sky has a safe sailing out of it, that every bus runs me over, that every low, mean syllable uttered in my direction seems to intimate the violence of murder, that every family seems like an opportunity for ruin and every marriage a ceremony into which calamity will fall and hearts will be broken and lives destroyed and people branded by the mortifications of love?
Rick Moody (Demonology)
[Feminism is] a socialist, anti-family, political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians.
Pat Robertson
The feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women. It is about a socialist, anti-family political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians.
Pat Robertson
When you took a man's job away from him, his ability to feed and clothe his family, that man was going to get angry.
Darrin Grimwood (Destroy All Robots)
Already he knew that to overdo a thing is to destroy it.
Elizabeth Enright (The Four-Story Mistake (The Melendy Family, #2))
During last night’s insomnia, as these thoughts came and went between my aching temples, I realised once again, what I had almost forgotten in this recent period of relative calm, that I tread a terribly tenuous, indeed almost non-existent soil spread over a pit full of shadows, whence the powers of darkness emerge at will to destroy my life…
Franz Kafka (Letters to Friends, Family, and Editors)
The tragedy today is that many Christians think they are fighting flesh and blood in their marital and parenting issues, rather than realizing that Satan has an agenda to destroy their home. Whoever controls the family controls the future.
Tony Evans (Victory in Spiritual Warfare)
The noblest calling in the world is motherhood. True motherhood is the most beautiful of all arts, the greatest of all professions. She who can paint a masterpiece, or who can write a book that will influence millions, deserve the plaudits and admiration of mankind; but she who rears successfully a family of healthy, beautiful sons and daughters whose immortal souls will exert influence throughout the ages long after paintings shall have faded, and books and statues shall have decayed or been destroyed, deserves the highest honor that man can give, and the choicest blessings of God.
David O. McKay
People don't know anymore why we've had eight years of war. Why their children have died...This entire war was just a big setup to destroy both the Iranian and the Iraqi armies. The former was the most powerful in the Middle East in 1980, and the latter represented a real danger to Israel. The West sold weapons to both camps and we, we were stupid enough to enter into this cynical game...eight years of war for nothing! So now the state names streets after martyrs to flatter the families of the victims. In this way, perhaps, they'll find some meaning in all this absurdity.
Marjane Satrapi (The Complete Persepolis (Persepolis, #1-4))
When it rains, the moisture in the humid air blankets our town with the smell of damp coffee grounds wafting in from the Nescafé factory at the town’s eastern edge. I don’t like coffee but I like that smell. It’s comforting; it unites the town in a common sensory experience; it’s good industry, like the roaring rug mill that fills our ears, brings work and signals our town’s vitality. There is a place here—you can hear it, smell it—where people make lives, suffer pain, enjoy small pleasures, play baseball, die, make love, have kids, drink themselves drunk on spring nights and do their best to hold off the demons that seek to destroy us, our homes, our families, our town.
Bruce Springsteen (Born to Run)
What wars really destroyed were families.
Gail Tsukiyama (The Street of a Thousand Blossoms)
The circus is a jealous wench. Indeed that is an understatement. She is a ravening hag who sucks your vitality as a vampire drinks blood – who kills the brightest stars in her crown and will allow no private life for those who serve her; wrecking their homes, ruining their bodies, and destroying the happiness of their loved ones by her insatiable demands. She is all of these things, and yet, I love her as I love nothing else on earth.
Henry Ringling North (The Circus Kings: Our Ringling Family Story)
Food for her is not food, it is terror, dignity, gratitude, vengeance, joyfulness, humiliation, religion, history, and, of course, love. As if the fruit she always offered us were picked from the destroyed brances of out family tree.
Jonathan Safran Foer (Eating Animals)
Just as the universal family of gifted writers transcends national barriers, so is the gifted reader a universal figure, not subject to spatial or temporal laws. It is he—the good, the excellent reader—who has saved the artists again and again from being destroyed by emperors, dictators, priests, puritans, philistines, political moralists, policemen, postmasters, and prigs. Let me define this admirable reader. He does not belong to any specific nation or class. No director of conscience and no book club can manage his soul. His approach to a work of fiction is not governed by those juvenile emotions that make the mediocre reader identify himself with this or that character and “skip descriptions.” The good, the admirable reader identifies himself not with the boy or the girl in the book, but with the mind that conceived and composed that book. The admirable reader does not seek information about Russia in a Russian novel, for he knows that the Russia of Tolstoy or Chekhov is not the average Russia of history but a specific world imagined and created by individual genius. The admirable reader is not concerned with general ideas; he is interested in the particular vision. He likes the novel not because it helps him to get along with the group (to use a diabolical progressive-school cliche); he likes the novel because he imbibes and understands every detail of the text, enjoys what the author meant to be injoyed, beams inwardly and all over, is thrilled by the magic imageries of the master-forger, the fancy-forger, the conjuror, the artist. Indeed of all the characters that a great artist creates, his readers are the best. (“Russian Writers, Censors, and Readers”)
Vladimir Nabokov (Lectures on Russian Literature)
Spiritual fathers have influence over the lives of individuals. Patriarchs have influence over families. The devil has been able to destroy families because there is a lack of spiritual fathers and patriarchs.
Sherry K. White
I don't want love to destroy me like it did my family
P nk
Our relationships can destroy us, but they can change us, too, and restore us, and without us ever seeing it happen, they define us.
Robert Kolker (Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family)
Maybe the trick is not to define yourself as a container for your experiences, your thoughts. Maybe it's to assume you are larger than the things you have felt over a series of years, that your history is not a list of things your body has done or been present for, that your family is not people who you spent a lot of time around as a child or carry your genetic code. Maybe the trick is to push violently at your own boundaries, to find your own contradictions, and use your teeth and nails to destroy what separates you from something else. I am trying.
Jessa Crispin (The Dead Ladies Project: Exiles, Expats, and Ex-Countries)
The adversary’s global attack on marriage is actually an attack on society itself, and ultimately an attack on God, the creator and manufacturer of society and marriage. The adversary knows that if he can destroy marriage he can destroy families; if he can destroy families he can destroy society; and if he can destroy society he can destroy humanity.
Myles Munroe (The Purpose and Power of Love & Marriage)
It's one thing to make war for your country, your family, even in pursuit of glory. It's another to believe that the people you fight are embodiments of evil and must be destroyed for that. I want this peninsula back. I want Esperana great again, but I will not pretend that if we smash Al- Rassan and all it has built we are doing the will of any god I know.
Guy Gavriel Kay (The Lions of Al-Rassan)
A curse. Been in our family for generations. The Lees have always been perverts. I shall never forget the unspeakable horror that froze the lymph in my glands when the baneful word seared my reeling brain—I was a homosexual. I thought of the painted simpering female impersonators I'd seen in a Baltimore nightclub. Could it be possible I was one of those subhuman things? I walked the streets in a daze like a man with a light concussion. I would've destroyed myself. And a wise old queen—Bobo, we called her—taught me that I had a duty to live and bear my burden proudly for all to see. Poor Bobo came to a sticky end - he was riding in the Duke Devanche's Hispano Suissa when his falling hemorrhoids blew out of the car and wrapped around the rear wheel. He was completely gutted leaving an empty shell sitting there on the giraffe skin upholstry. Even the eyes and the brain went with a horrible "shlupping" sound. The Duke says he would carry that ghastly "shlup" with him to his mausoleum.
William S. Burroughs (Queer)
A wise politician, when asked if he were for or against Prohibition, answered: If by alcohol, you mean the dangerous drink which destroys families, than I am fully for Prohibition. But if, by alcohol, you mean noble drink which promotes good fellowship and makes every meal a pleasure, then I am against it.
Leil Lowndes (How to Talk to Anyone: 92 Little Tricks for Big Success in Relationships)
Most families are destroyed from the inside, because they allow themselves to be conquered by others from the outside.
Carlton Young
You cannot destroy a family. Even if you try. Even through war. Some part of them always remains.
Nikita Gill (The Girl and the Goddess: Stories and Poems of Divine Wisdom)
Now, as I understand it, the bards were feared. They were respected, but more than that they were feared. If you were just some magician, if you'd pissed off some witch, then what's she gonna do, she's gonna put a curse on you, and what's gonna happen? Your hens are gonna lay funny, your milk's gonna go sour, maybe one of your kids is gonna get a hare-lip or something like that — no big deal. You piss off a bard, and forget about putting a curse on you, he might put a satire on you. And if he was a skilful bard, he puts a satire on you, it destroys you in the eyes of your community, it shows you up as ridiculous, lame, pathetic, worthless, in the eyes of your community, in the eyes of your family, in the eyes of your children, in the eyes of yourself, and if it's a particularly good bard, and he's written a particularly good satire, then three hundred years after you're dead, people are still gonna be laughing, at what a twat you were.
Alan Moore
Mapleshade: "Your punishment is complete now, Crookedstar. You have lost everything." Crookedstar: "No, Mapleshade. You're wrong. I still have a clan that I love and am proud to lead. And now... ...now everything precious to me is here, in StarClan. My family is waiting here for me, when my ninth life has passed. It's you who have lost. You have no power over me anymore." Mapleshade: "I have destroyed you!" Crookedstar: "No, Mapleshade. I still have the cats that I loved. You have nothing and no one.
Erin Hunter (Crookedstar's Promise (Warriors Super Edition, #4))
I really wish the “normal” people would leave us freaks alone and stop trying to save us. We get by, we take care of each other, and the people who cost the freaks their jobs didn’t give them employment, or a place to stay, or a family to be a part of; they just destroyed their world and felt morally superior for doing it.
Laurell K. Hamilton (Dead Ice (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter Book 24))
Families are like snowflakes: they come in many shapes and sizes and no two are the same. And like a snowflake, they are very delicate and must be protected and guarded from elements that threaten to destroy their precarious balance.
Jaycee Dugard (A Stolen Life)
We tend to be taken aback by the thought that God could be angry. how can a deity who is perfect and loving ever be angry?...We take pride in our tolerance of the excesses of others. So what is God's problem?... But love detests what destroys the beloved. Real love stands against the deception, the lie, the sin that destroys. Nearly a century ago the theologian E.H. Glifford wrote: 'Human love here offers a true analogy: the more a father loves his son, the more he hates in him the drunkard, the liar, the traitor.'... Anger isn't the opposite of love. Hate is, and the final form of hate is indifference... How can a good God forgive bad people without compromising himself? Does he just play fast and loose with the facts? 'Oh, never mind...boys will be boys'. Try telling that to a survivor of the Cambodian 'killing fields' or to someone who lost an entire family in the Holocaust. No. To be truly good one has to be outraged by evil and implacably hostile to injustice.
Rebecca Manley Pippert
Occupation, curfew, settlements, closed military zone, administrative detention, siege, preventive strike, terrorist infrastructure, transfer. Their WAR destroys language. Speaks genocide with the words of a quiet technician. Occupation means that you cannot trust the OPEN SKY, or any open street near to the gates of snipers tower. It means that you cannot trust the future or have faith that the past will always be there. Occupation means you live out your live under military rule, and the constant threat of death, a quick death from a snipers bullet or a rocket attack from an M16. A crushing, suffocating death, a slow bleeding death in an ambulance stopped for hours at a checkpoint. A dark death, at a torture table in an Israeli prison: just a random arbitrary death. A cold calculated death: from a curable disease. A thousand small deaths while you watch your family dying around you. Occupation means that every day you die, and the world watches in silence. As if your death was nothing, as if you were a stone falling in the earth, water falling over water. And if you face all of this death and indifference and keep your humanity, and your love and your dignity and YOU refuse to surrender to their terror, then you know something of the courage that is Palestine.
Suheir Hammad
As soon as we were inside, Edwart's family rushed to greet me. What seemed like thirty people circled me, chattering away. "Oh my god, you smell good." "Good smell, good smell." "(she really does smell good.)" "do you mind if I put my nose right on you? Right on your arm?" "More smelly smelly please." "If I could destroy every part of my brain except the part that smelled your smell, I would do it. I would do it in a second." "Let's go, Belle," Edwart whispered and grabbed my hand. We pushed through the ravenous vampires nad out the front door. "So that went well!" I said outside in the U-HAUL. I sniffed my hair. I did smell good. "No, no, that wasn't my house," Edwart said, starting the truck. "I don't even know those people! Sometimes I get addresses confused.
The Harvard Lampoon
While his three eldest sons spent their adult lives toiling to improve the family fortunes, who had Benicio named as his heir? The illegitimate youngest son who had devoted his adult life to destroying the family business, or at least buggering it up real good. Does this make sense to anyone besides Benicio? Of course not. Either the man is a mastermind of family manipulation or just plain fucked in the head. I don't use that word much, but in some cases, nothing else fits. -Paige
Kelley Armstrong (Industrial Magic (Women of the Otherworld, #4))
The senseless destruction that war brings,” he explains. “The ones who always pay the price of another’s greed is the simple man who just wants to go about his life, take joy in his family, and find peace at the end. They didn’t ask for it, don’t understand why it’s happening, but theirs are the lives ruined, turned upside down, families destroyed.
Brian S. Pratt (The Unsuspecting Mage (The Morcyth Saga, #1))
If you want to completely destroy a child, all you have to do is mold them into your vision of what you want them to be. If you want to completely liberate a child, all you have to do is grow them into the person they were created to be. The former cannot see God in the child. The latter can see nothing less.
Craig D. Lounsbrough
You want a physicist to speak at your funeral. You want the physicist to talk to your grieving family about the conservation of energy, so they will understand that your energy has not died. You want the physicist to remind your sobbing mother about the first law of thermodynamics; that no energy gets created in the universe, and none is destroyed. You want your mother to know that all your energy, every vibration, every Btu of heat, every wave of every particle that was her beloved child remains with her in this world. You want the physicist to tell your weeping father that amid energies of the cosmos, you gave as good as you got. And at one point you'd hope that the physicist would step down from the pulpit and walk to your brokenhearted spouse there in the pew and tell him that all the photons that ever bounced off your face, all the particles whose paths were interrupted by your smile, by the touch of your hair, hundreds of trillions of particles, have raced off like children, their ways forever changed by you. And as your widow rocks in the arms of a loving family, may the physicist let her know that all the photons that bounced from you were gathered in the particle detectors that are her eyes, that those photons created within her constellations of electromagnetically charged neurons whose energy will go on forever. And the physicist will remind the congregation of how much of all our energy is given off as heat. There may be a few fanning themselves with their programs as he says it. And he will tell them that the warmth that flowed through you in life is still here, still part of all that we are, even as we who mourn continue the heat of our own lives. And you'll want the physicist to explain to those who loved you that they need not have faith; indeed, they should not have faith. Let them know that they can measure, that scientists have measured precisely the conservation of energy and found it accurate, verifiable and consistent across space and time. You can hope your family will examine the evidence and satisfy themselves that the science is sound and that they'll be comforted to know your energy's still around. According to the law of the conservation of energy, not a bit of you is gone; you're just less orderly. Amen.
Aaron Freeman
Racism is both overt and covert. It takes two, closely related forms: individual whites acting against individual blacks, and acts by the total white community against the black community. We call these individual racism and institutional racism. The first consists of overt acts by individuals, which cause death, injury or the violent destruction of property. This type can be recorded by television cameras; it can frequently be observed in the process of commission. The second type is less overt, far more subtle, less identifiable in terms of specific individuals committing the acts. But it is no less destructive of human life. The second type originates in the operation of established and respected forces in the society, and thus receives far less public condemnation than the first type. When white terrorists bomb a black church and kill five black children, that is an act of individual racism, widely deplored by most segments of the society. But when in that same city - Birmingham, Alabama - five hundred black babies die each year because of the lack of proper food, shelter and medical facilities, and thousands more are destroyed and maimed physically, emotionally and intellectually because of conditions of poverty and discrimination in the black community, that is a function of institutional racism. When a black family moves into a home in a white neighborhood and is stoned, burned or routed out, they are victims of an overt act of individual racism which many people will condemn - at least in words. But it is institutional racism that keeps black people locked in dilapidated slum tenements, subject to the daily prey of exploitative slumlords, merchants, loan sharks and discriminatory real estate agents. The society either pretends it does not know of this latter situation, or is in fact incapable of doing anything meaningful about it.
Stokely Carmichael (Black Power: The Politics of Liberation)
If a young man gets married, starts a family, and spends the rest of his life working at a soul-destroying job, he is held up as an example of virtue and responsibility. The other type of man, living only for himself, working only for himself, doing first one thing and then another simply because he enjoys it and because he has to keep only himself, sleeping where and when he wants, and facing woman when he meets her, on equal terms and not as one of a million slaves, is rejected by society. The free, unshackled man has no place in its midst.
Esther Vilar (The Manipulated Man)
Many of you would like to take evil and step on it, destroying it like you would a bug. Squish, smash! Begone into another reality! This practice of eliminating human life because it is perceived as evil does you no good. In the end your history and experience are filled with war of one kind or another; humans fighting one another for the right to speak their truth and share their perception.And one human or another is always wanting to suppress someone else's ideas, someone else's thinking.
Barbara Marciniak (Family of Light: Pleiadian Tales and Lessons in Living)
It's easy to dismiss girls who work on the streets as deadbeats or drug addicts without ever thinking about why they're working as prostitutes. And the truth is that many of them have been trafficked and they work long, exhausting, miserable, soul-destroying hours for men who are cruel and violent. They're constantly afraid, not just because of what might be done to them if they don't do what they're told, but also because of the very real threats that are made against their families and the people they love.
Sophie Hayes (Trafficked)
Predator is not property,” Grimm said in a calm, level tone. “She is not my possession. She is my home. Her crew are not my employees. They are my family. And if you threaten to take my home and destroy the livelihood of my family again, Commodore, I will be inclined to kill you where you stand.
Jim Butcher (The Aeronaut's Windlass (The Cinder Spires, #1))
I'm looking at the ruins of my own existence and knowing, with a sickening certainty, that my old home and my old life have been truly destroyed.
K.C. Finn (Legion Lost)
Suffering can either destroy you or it can save you. Because without suffering, we don't need more; we have enough. But when we suffer, we can't help but reach out.
Susan May Warren (When I Fall in Love (Christiansen Family, #3))
Any nation that neglects teaching the sacredness of life and the family does so at its own peril. Any nation that sanctions the removal of God’s boundaries will destroy its own.
Ravi Zacharias (Why Jesus?: Rediscovering His Truth in an Age of Mass Marketed Spirituality)
Two powerful factors which creates difference between destroying your relationship and deepening it are EGO and Attitude
Abhysheq Shukla (KISS Life "Life is what you make it")
The wild pursuit of status and wealth has destroyed our souls and our economy. Families live in sprawling mansions financed with mortgages they can no longer repay. Consumers recklessly rang up Coach handbags and Manolo Blahnik shoes on credit cards because they seemed to confer a sense of identity and merit. Our favorite hobby, besides television, used to be, until reality hit us like a tsunami, shopping. Shopping used to be the compensation for spending five days a week in tiny cubicles. American workers are ground down by corporations that have disempowered them, used them, and have now discarded them
Chris Hedges (Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle)
Because the state uses violence to achieve its ends, and there is no rational end to the use of violence, states grow until they destroy civilized interactions through the corruption of money, contracts, honesty, family and self-reliance. No state in history has ever been contained. It’s only taken a little more than a century for the US – founded on the idea of limited government, to break the bonds of the constitution, institute the income tax, take control of the money supply and the educational system and begin its catastrophic expansion.
Stefan Molyneux
What the world needs now is liberated men who have the qualities Silverstein cites, men who are 'empathetic and strong, autonomous and connected, responsible to self, to family and friends, to society, and capable of understanding how those responsibilities are, ultimately, inseparable.' Men need feminist thinking. It it the theory that supports their spiritual evolution and their shift away from the patriarchal model. Patriarchy is destroying the well-being of men, taking their lives daily.
bell hooks (The Will to Change: Men, Masculinity, and Love)
If I were Satan and wanted to destroy a society, I think I would stage a full blown blitz on its women. I would keep them so distraught and distracted that they would never find the calming strength and serenity for which their sex has always been known. He has effectively done that, catching us in the crunch of trying to be superhuman instead of realistically striving to reach our indiviual purpose and unique God-given potential within such diversity. He tauntingly teases us that if we don't have it all- fame, fortune, families, and fun- and have it every minute all the time, we have been short changed; we are second class citizens in the race of life. You'd have to be deaf, dumb and blind not to get these messages in today's world, and as a sex we are struggling, and our society struggles. Drugs, teenage pregnancies, divorce, family violence, and suicide are some of the every-increasing side effecs of our collective life in the express lane.
Patricia T. Holland (A Quiet Heart)
The demonic powers hate babies because they hate Jesus. When they destroy “the least of these” (Matthew 25:40, 45), the most vulnerable among us, they’re destroying a picture of Jesus himself.
Russell D. Moore (Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches)
Conservatism starts from a sentiment that all mature people can readily share: the sentiment that good things are easily destroyed, but not easily created. This is especially true of the good things that come to us as collective assets: peace, freedom, law, civility, public spirit, the security of property and family life, in all of which we depend on the cooperation of others while having no means singlehandedly to obtain it. In respect of such things, the work of destruction is quick, easy and exhilarating; the work of creation slow, laborious and dull. That is one of the lessons of the twentieth century. It is also one reason why conservatives suffer such a disadvantage when it comes to public opinion. Their position is true but boring, that of their opponents exciting but false.
Roger Scruton (How to Be a Conservative)
We live in an extraordinary age. These are times of stunning changes in social organization, economic well-being, moral and ethical precepts, philosophical and religious perspectives, and human self-knowledge, as well as in our understanding of that vast universe in which we are imbedded like a grain of sand in a cosmic ocean. As long as there have been human beings, we have posed the deep and fundamental questions, which evoke wonder and stir us into at least a tentative and trembling awareness, questions on the origins of consciousness; life on our planet; the beginnings of the Earth; the formation of the Sun; the possibility of intelligent beings somewhere up there in the depths of the sky; as well as, the grandest inquiry of all - on the advent, nature and ultimate destiny of the universe. For all but the last instant of human history these issues have been the exclusive province of philosophers and poets, shamans and theologians. The diverse and mutually contradictory answers offered demonstrate that few of the proposed solutions have been correct. But today, as a result of knowledge painfully extracted from nature, through generations of careful thinking, observing, and experimenting, we are on the verge of glimpsing at least preliminary answers to many of these questions. ...If we do not destroy ourselves, most of us will be around for the answers. Had we been born fifty years earlier, we could have wondered, pondered, speculated about these issues, but we could have done nothing about them. Had we been born fifty years later, the answers would, I think, already have been in. Our children will have been taught the answers before most of them will have had the opportunity to even formulate the questions. By far the most exciting, satisfying and exhilarating time to be alive is the time in which we pass from ignorance to knowledge on these fundamental issues; the age where we begin in wonder and end in understanding. In all of the four-billion-year history of the human family, there is only one generation priveleged to live through that unique transitional moment: that generation is ours.
Carl Sagan
FACT: The black family (and the black male/black female relationship) was systematically DESTROYED by over 500 years of institutionalized slavery, racism, and racist media stereotypes. The white family was not.
Umoja (The Interracial Con Game)
To begin with, this case should never have come to trial. The state has not produced one iota of medical evidence that the crime Tom Robinson is charged with ever took place... It has relied instead upon the testimony of two witnesses, whose evidence has not only been called into serious question on cross-examination, but has been flatly contradicted by the defendant. Now, there is circumstantial evidence to indicate that Mayella Ewel was beaten - savagely, by someone who led exclusively with his left. And Tom Robinson now sits before you having taken the oath with the only good hand he possesses... his RIGHT. I have nothing but pity in my heart for the chief witness for the State. She is the victim of cruel poverty and ignorance. But my pity does not extend so far as to her putting a man's life at stake, which she has done in an effort to get rid of her own guilt. Now I say "guilt," gentlemen, because it was guilt that motivated her. She's committed no crime - she has merely broken a rigid and time-honored code of our society, a code so severe that whoever breaks it is hounded from our midst as unfit to live with. She must destroy the evidence of her offense. But what was the evidence of her offense? Tom Robinson, a human being. She must put Tom Robinson away from her. Tom Robinson was to her a daily reminder of what she did. Now, what did she do? She tempted a *****. She was white, and she tempted a *****. She did something that, in our society, is unspeakable. She kissed a black man. Not an old uncle, but a strong, young ***** man. No code mattered to her before she broke it, but it came crashing down on her afterwards. The witnesses for the State, with the exception of the sheriff of Maycomb County have presented themselves to you gentlemen, to this court in the cynical confidence that their testimony would not be doubted, confident that you gentlemen would go along with them on the assumption... the evil assumption that all Negroes lie, all Negroes are basically immoral beings, all ***** men are not to be trusted around our women. An assumption that one associates with minds of their caliber, and which is, in itself, gentlemen, a lie, which I do not need to point out to you. And so, a quiet, humble, respectable *****, who has had the unmitigated TEMERITY to feel sorry for a white woman, has had to put his word against TWO white people's! The defendant is not guilty - but somebody in this courtroom is. Now, gentlemen, in this country, our courts are the great levelers. In our courts, all men are created equal. I'm no idealist to believe firmly in the integrity of our courts and of our jury system - that's no ideal to me. That is a living, working reality! Now I am confident that you gentlemen will review, without passion, the evidence that you have heard, come to a decision and restore this man to his family. In the name of GOD, do your duty. In the name of God, believe... Tom Robinson
Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)
On Friday night, my dad wants to have a family activity. so we go ice-skating. It's me and my mom and my dad and my sister. It's like we're all together. It's like a beautiful dream. It's like the Disney Channel. Except that my dad and I hate each other. And my mom hates herself. And my sister is humiliated by the bunch of us. And I'm secretly waiting for the inevitable devastation of our entire civilization. But except for that.
Blake Nelson (Destroy All Cars)
A man is a man is a man. His family threatened, his beliefs attacked, his way of life destroyed, his whole world coming to an end - he will kill. Make no mistake. He won't let the new order roll over him without a struggle.
Zadie Smith (White Teeth)
Think about what it would mean to fight," he said. "Say we barricade ourselves here in the hotel and refuse to leave. They come at us with their Weapon, whatever it is. Some of us are hurt, some die. We go out to meet them with whatever weapons we can find - sticks, maybe, or pieces of broken glass. We battle each other. Maybe they set fire to the hotel. Maybe we march into the village and steal food from them nad they come after us and beat us. We beat them back. In the end, maybe we damage them so badly that they're too weak to make us leave. What do we have? Friends and neighbors and families dead. A place half destroyed, and those left in it full of hatred for us. And we ourselves will have to live with the memory of the terrible things we have done.
Jeanne DuPrau (The People of Sparks (Book of Ember, #2))
That’s what sociopaths do: they co-opt others and use them toward their own ends—ruthlessly and efficiently, with no tolerance for dissent or resistance. Fred destroyed Donald, too, but not by snuffing him out as he did Freddy; instead, he short-circuited Donald’s ability to develop and experience the entire spectrum of human emotion. By limiting Donald’s access to his own feelings and rendering many of them unacceptable, Fred perverted his son’s perception of the world and damaged his ability to live in it. His capacity to be his own person, rather than an extension of his father’s ambitions, became severely limited.
Mary L. Trump (Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World's Most Dangerous Man)
Kip cleared his throat and gave a brave smile. ‘We destroyed our world,’ he said, ‘and left it for the skies. Our numbers were few. Our species had scattered. We were the last to leave. We left the ground behind. We left the oceans. We left the air. We watched these things grow small. We watched them shrink into a point of light. As we watched, we understood. We understood what we were. We understood what we had lost. We understood what we would need to do to survive. We abandoned more than our ancestors’ world. We abandoned our short sight. We abandoned our bloody ways. We made ourselves anew.’ He spread his hands, encompassing the gathered. ‘We are the Exodus Fleet. We are those that wandered, that wander still. We are the homesteaders that shelter our families. We are the miners and foragers in the open. We are the ships that ferry between. We are the explorers who carry our names. We are the parents who lead the way. We are the children who continue on.’ He picked up his scrib from the podium. ‘What is his name?
Becky Chambers (Record of a Spaceborn Few (Wayfarers, #3))
Male passivity is a disease that robs a man of his purpose while it destroys marriages, ruins families, and spoils legacies. A passive man doesn’t engage; he retreats. He neglects personal responsibility. At its core, passivity is cowardice.
Dennis Rainey (Stepping Up: A Call to Courageous Manhood)
I’ve watched my dad move our family from extreme poverty to extreme wealth and then everywhere in between. Never once did I see or hear him be anything but a cheerleader for the accomplishments of others. It didn’t matter if he was down or up in life, he wanted everybody around him to succeed. I’ve even watched him praise the very people that have tried to destroy him over the years and then very publicly wish them success and happiness. He taught me the enthusiasm that should always come at the success of others. He constantly taught me that when others succeed, it gives us all more opportunity to succeed. He taught me that when there is conflict, minor or major, you can almost always walk away at the end with a handshake.
Dan Pearce (Single Dad Laughing)
I firmly believe that American society would not endure ten years if subjected to half the trials and tortures we’ve put Natives through. And yet Native peoples have not been utterly destroyed, not by the world’s strongest military. They have not been totally assimilated, not by the world’s largest religion. Native religions are indeed concerned with being a good person, respecting one’s family, ancestors, community, and the Earth—and when these principles are lived, there is great strength.
Israel Morrow (Gods of the Flesh: A Skeptic's Journey Through Sex, Politics and Religion)
Can it be, thought I, that my sole mission on earth is to destroy the hopes of others? Ever since I began to live and act, fate has somehow associated me with the last act of other people's tragedies, as if without me no one could either die or give way to despair! I have been the inevitable character who comes in at the final act, involuntarily playing the detestable role of the hangman or the traitor. What has been fate's object in all this? Has it destined me to be the author of middle-class tragedies and family romances--or a purveyor of tales for, say, the Reader's Library? Who knows? Are there not many who begin life by aspiring to end it like Alexander the Great, or Lord Byron, and yet remain petty civil servants all their lives?
Mikhail Lermontov (A Hero of Our Time)
What are humans meant to do; why are we here? Are we a mutation on the earth destroying its host? Are we a cancer destined to kill what supports us? I think not. So exploring this question is a powerful exercise in meaning; what is the meaning of human existence?
David Walton Earle
The facts of life do not penetrate to the sphere in which our beliefs are cherished; they did not engender those beliefs, and they are powerless to destroy them; they can inflict on them continual blows of contradiction and disproof without weakening them; and an avalanche of miseries and maladies succeeding one another without interruption in the bosom of a family will not make it lose faith in either the clemency of its God or the capacity of its physician.
Marcel Proust (Swann's Way)
There is one thing that is common to every individual, relationship, team, family, organization, nation, economy, and civilization throughout the world—one thing which, if removed, will destroy the most powerful government, the most successful business, the most thriving economy, the most influential leadership, the greatest friendship, the strongest character, the deepest love. On the other hand, if developed and leveraged, that one thing has the potential to create unparalleled success and prosperity in every dimension of life. Yet, it is the least understood, most neglected, and most underestimated possibility of our time. That one thing is trust.
Stephen M.R. Covey (The SPEED of Trust: The One Thing that Changes Everything)
Hi there, cutie." Ash turned his head to find an extremely attractive college student by his side. With black curly hair, she was dressed in jeans and a tight green top that displayed her curves to perfection. "Hi." "You want to go inside for a drink? It's on me." Ash paused as he saw her past, present, and future simultaneously in his mind. Her name was Tracy Phillips. A political science major, she was going to end up at Harvard Med School and then be one of the leading researchers to help isolate a mutated genome that the human race didn't even know existed yet. The discovery of that genome would save the life of her youngest daughter and cause her daughter to go on to medical school herself. That daughter, with the help and guidance of her mother, would one day lobby for medical reforms that would change the way the medical world and governments treated health care. The two of them would shape generations of doctors and save thousands of lives by allowing people to have groundbreaking medical treatments that they wouldn't have otherwise been able to afford. And right now, all Tracy could think about was how cute his ass was in leather pants, and how much she'd like to peel them off him. In a few seconds, she'd head into the coffee shop and meet a waitress named Gina Torres. Gina's dream was to go to college herself to be a doctor and save the lives of the working poor who couldn't afford health care, but because of family problems she wasn't able to take classes this year. Still Gina would tell Tracy how she planned to go next year on a scholarship. Late tonight, after most of the college students were headed off, the two of them would be chatting about Gina's plans and dreams. And a month from now, Gina would be dead from a freak car accident that Tracy would see on the news. That one tragic event combined with the happenstance meeting tonight would lead Tracy to her destiny. In one instant, she'd realize how shallow her life had been, and she'd seek to change that and be more aware of the people around her and of their needs. Her youngest daughter would be named Gina Tory in honor of the Gina who was currently busy wiping down tables while she imagined a better life for everyone. So in effect, Gina would achieve her dream. By dying she'd save thousands of lives and she'd bring health care to those who couldn't afford it... The human race was an amazing thing. So few people ever realized just how many lives they inadvertently touched. How the right or wrong word spoken casually could empower or destroy another's life. If Ash were to accept Tracy's invitation for coffee, her destiny would be changed and she would end up working as a well-paid bank officer. She'd decide that marriage wasn't for her and go on to live her life with a partner and never have children. Everything would change. All the lives that would have been saved would be lost. And knowing the nuance of every word spoken and every gesture made was the heaviest of all the burdens Ash carried. Smiling gently, he shook his head. "Thanks for asking, but I have to head off. You have a good night." She gave him a hot once-over. "Okay, but if you change your mind, I'll be in here studying for the next few hours." Ash watched as she left him and entered the shop. She set her backpack down at a table and started unpacking her books. Sighing from exhaustion, Gina grabbed a glass of water and made her way over to her... And as he observed them through the painted glass, the two women struck up a conversation and set their destined futures into motion. His heart heavy, he glanced in the direction Cael had vanished and hated the future that awaited his friend. But it was Cael's destiny. His fate... "Imora thea mi savur," Ash whispered under his breath in Atlantean. God save me from love.
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Dark Side of the Moon (Dark-Hunter, #9; Were-Hunter, #3))
The letter was destroyed, but its final paragraph is inside of me. She wrote, I wish I could be a girl again, with the chance to live my life again. I have suffered so much more than I needed to. And the joys I have felt have not always been joyous. I could have lived differently. When I was your age, my grandfather gought me a ruby bracelet. It was too big for me and would slide up and down my arm. It was almost a necklace. He later told me that he had asked the jeweler to make it that way. Its size was supposed to be a symbol of his love. More rubies, more love. But I could not wear it comfortably. I could not wear it at all. So here is the point of everything I have been trying to say. If I were to give a bracelet to you, now, I would measure your wrist twice.
Jonathan Safran Foer (Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close)
As long as we share our stories, as long as our stories reveal our strengths and vulnerabilities to each other, we reinvigorte our understanding and tolerance for the little quirks of personality that in other circumstances would drive us apart. When we live in a family, a community, a country where we know each other's true stories, we remember our capacity to lean in and love each other into wholeness. I have read the story of a tribe in southern Africa called the Babemba in which a person doing something wrong, something that destroys this delicate social net, brings all work in the village to a halt. The people gather around the "offender," and one by one they begin to recite everything he has done right in his life: every good deed, thoughtful behavior, act of social responsibility. These things have to be true about the person, and spoken honestly, but the time-honored consequence of misbehavior is to appreciate that person back into the better part of himself. The person is given the chance to remember who he is and why he is important to the life of the village. I want to live under such a practice of compassion. When I forget my place, when I lash out with some private wounding in a public way, I want to be remembered back into alignment with my self and my purpose. I want to live with the opportunity for reconciliation. When someone around me is thoughtless or cruel, I want to be given the chance to respond with a ritual that creates the possibility of reconnection. I want to live in a neighborhood where people don't shoot first, don't sue first, where people are Storycatchers willing to discover in strangers the mirror of themselves.
Christina Baldwin (Storycatcher: Making Sense of Our Lives through the Power and Practice of Story)
Remember whenever money is involved, it brings out horrific things in people. It has the power not only to split families apart, but to destroy the foundations of one's life. Never lose site of this. Take time and be certain you place your trust in those whose interests and goals mirror your own.
Gloria Vanderbilt (The Rainbow Comes and Goes: A Mother and Son on Life, Love, and Loss)
The American nuclear family made America great, but few are now defending it against forces determined to destroy it. If America continues to have many immigrants with different family types, we are less likely to maintain American values of personal freedom, individualism, and limited government.
Phyllis Schlafly (Who Killed the American Family?)
Incarceration is a sustained, lifetime lynching, meant to discard your soul and make a shell of you in plain life. Make you into your monster self, the beast that comes out when you are forced to survive in the absence of love and safety. Never mind that most of us come broken and traumatized, we still are no longer worth our own humanity. We are a criminal. We need punishment and to be rehabilitated. We need shame and exclusion. We are not worthy of control of our own lives; we are hopeless and evil. We are not individuals or of a womb or a family. We are not absent from anywhere else; because we are here, we simply non-exist. The world is better without us. In this society we are taught our crimes are the summations of our lives and define the limits of our possibility. Our only potential is to harm and destroy.
Junauda Petrus (The Stars and the Blackness Between Them)
You don’t know anyone at the party, so you don’t want to go. You don’t like cottage cheese, so you haven’t eaten it in years. This is your choice, of course, but don’t kid yourself: it’s also the flinch. Your personality is not set in stone. You may think a morning coffee is the most enjoyable thing in the world, but it’s really just a habit. Thirty days without it, and you would be fine. You think you have a soul mate, but in fact you could have had any number of spouses. You would have evolved differently, but been just as happy. You can change what you want about yourself at any time. You see yourself as someone who can’t write or play an instrument, who gives in to temptation or makes bad decisions, but that’s really not you. It’s not ingrained. It’s not your personality. You personality is something else, something deeper than just preferences, and these details on the surface, you can change anytime you like. If it is useful to do so, you must abandon your identity and start again. Sometimes, it’s the only way. Set fire to your old self. It’s not needed here. It’s too busy shopping, gossiping about others, and watching days go by and asking why you haven’t gotten as far as you’d like. This old self will die and be forgotten by all but family, and replaced by someone who makes a difference. Your new self is not like that. Your new self is the Great Chicago Fire—overwhelming, overpowering, and destroying everything that isn’t necessary.
Julien Smith (The Flinch)
In the 1830s, the forced removal of Cherokees, Choctaws, Chickasaws, Creeks, and Seminoles from the fertile lands of the southeastern United States, under the direction of President Andrew Jackson, amassed even more land for cotton cultivation and expansion of the wealth of white people. As Native Americans made the involuntary treks to what would become Indian Country or Oklahoma, white Americans dislocated approximately one million African Americans through the domestic slave trade, moving them from the Upper South to the Lower South and westward, destroying families, and severing community ties in order to create plantations and cultivate cotton.
Heather Andrea Williams (American Slavery: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions))
Just imagine the existence of a man - let us call him A - who has left youth far behind, and of a woman whom we may call B, who is young and happy and has seen nothing as yet of life or of the world. Family circumstances of various kinds brought them together, and he grew to love her as a daughter, and had no fear that his love would change its nature. But he forgot that B was so young, that life was still a May-game to her and that it was easy to fall in love with her in a different way, and that this would amuse her. He made a mistake and was suddenly aware of another feeling, as heavy as remorse, making its way into his heart, and he was afraid. He was afraid that their old friendly relations would be destroyed, and he made up his mind to go away before that happened.
Leo Tolstoy (Family Happiness)
Imprisonment is the form of punishment which may detrimentally affect not only the offender but also his family and his employment and because of its duration it can seldom be kept from becoming general public knowledge. It [...] can have a lasting demoralising effect on the character and personality of the offender. The loss of liberty, tedium, regimentation [...] which prison life entails, have a greater potentiality than a whipping for destroying the offender's self-esteem and the integrity of his character and for changing, for the worse, his way of life.
P.W. Thirion
A curse. Been in our family for generations. The Lees have always been perverts. I shall never forget the unspeakable horror that froze the lymph in my glands—the lymph glands that is, of course—when the baneful word seared my reeling brain: I was a homosexual. I thought of the painted, simpering female impersonators I'd seen in a Baltimore nightclub. Could it be possible I was one of those subhuman things? I walked the streets in a daze like a man with a light concussion—just a minute, Doctor Kildare, this isn't your script. I might well destroyed myself, ending an existence which seemed to offer nothing but grotesque misery and humiliation. Nobler, I thought, to die a man than live on, a sex monster. It was a wise old queen—Bobo, we called her—who taught me that I had a duty to live and bear my burden proudly for all to see, to conquer prejudice and ignorance and hate with knowledge and sincerity and love.
William S. Burroughs (Queer)
Although terrifying, the evil ghost will probably pose no real danger to you or your family. On the other hand, if you have a demonic infestation, your entire household is in very real danger. A demonic entity will not usually confront you or induce you to flee the home. Because, unlike the evil ghost, the demon does not actually want you to leave. On the contrary, it wants you to stick around so it can destroy your life and sully your soul from the inside.
Alexei Maxim Russell (The New Homeowner's Guide to House Spirits)
If the whole world seems like it's against you, it helps to know that you've still got home. A safe place. It just takes one person—a teacher, a friend, a parent. If I didn't have you and Dad, if you hadn't made it so clear you loved me as much as you did, or if you'd said, 'yeah, why don't you do it, and put yourself out of our misery, just shut up,' I would have killed myself. I really would have. I spent most of those days wishing I were dead anyway, and what always stopped me was the fact that doing so would destroy the lives of the only people who ever cared about me.
Nenia Campbell (Freaky Freshman)
When we confine animals for food, destroying their family and community connections, obliterating their connection with the earth and with their habitats, and thwarting their intelligent drives, we commit extreme violence against not only these creatures, but against the whole interconnected system of intelligence that supports them and that they serve.
Will Tuttle (The World Peace Diet)
Faggot, queer, fairy. Those words aren’t taught in a history course. You don’t learn them with the alphabet. Discrimination comes from the circles you’re supposed to trust. The home, the family, the church. They try to convince you God made you in his image, and then would destroy you because you weren’t good enough. That’s a good God? Who comes up with this crap?
Dan Skinner (Memorizing You)
There is an Eastern fable, told long ago, of a traveller overtaken on a plain by an enraged beast. Escaping from the beast he gets into a dry well, but sees at the bottom of the well a dragon that has opened its jaws to swallow him. And the unfortunate man, not daring to climb out lest he should be destroyed by the enraged beast, and not daring to leap to the bottom of the well lest he should be eaten by the dragon, seizes s twig growing in a crack in the well and clings to it. His hands are growing weaker and he feels he will soon have to resign himself to the destruction that awaits him above or below, but still he clings on. Then he sees that two mice, a black one and a white one, go regularly round and round the stem of the twig to which he is clinging and gnaw at it. And soon the twig itself will snap and he will fall into the dragon's jaws. The traveller sees this and knows that he will inevitably perish; but while still hanging he looks around, sees some drops of honey on the leaves of the twig, reaches them with his tongue and licks them. So I too clung to the twig of life, knowing that the dragon of death was inevitably awaiting me, ready to tear me to pieces; and I could not understand why I had fallen into such torment. I tried to lick the honey which formerly consoled me, but the honey no longer gave me pleasure, and the white and black mice of day and night gnawed at the branch by which I hung. I saw the dragon clearly and the honey no longer tasted sweet. I only saw the unescapable dragon and mice, and I could not tear my gaze from them. and this is not a fable but the real unanswerable truth intelligible to all. The deception of the joys of life which formerly allayed my terror of the dragon now no longer deceived me. No matter how often I may be told, "You cannot understand the meaning of life so do not think about it, but live," I can no longer do it: I have already done it too long. I cannot now help seeing day and night going round and bringing me to death. That is all I see, for that alone is true. All else is false. The two drops of honey which diverted my eyes from the cruel truth longer than the rest: my love of family, and of writing -- art as I called it -- were no longer sweet to me. "Family"... said I to myself. But my family -- wife and children -- are also human. They are placed just as I am: they must either live in a lie or see the terrible truth. Why should they live? Why should I love them, guard them, bring them up, or watch them? That they may come to the despair that I feel, or else be stupid? Loving them, I cannot hide the truth from them: each step in knowledge leads them to the truth. And the truth is death.
Leo Tolstoy (A Confession)
It cannot be too often repeated that what destroyed the Family in the modern world was Capitalism. No doubt it might have been Communism, if Communism had ever had a chance, outside that semi-Mongolian wilderness where it actually flourishes. But, so far as we are concerned, what has broken up households and encouraged divorces, and treated the old domestic virtues with more and more open contempt, is the epoch and Power of Capitalism. It is Capitalism that has forced a moral feud and a commercial competition between the sexes; that has destroyed the influence of the parent in favour of the influence of the employer; that has driven men from their homes to look for jobs; that has forced them to live near their factories or their firms instead of near their families; and, above all, that has encouraged, for commercial reasons, a parade of publicity and garish novelty, which is in its nature the death of all that was called dignity and modesty by our mothers and fathers.
G.K. Chesterton
...when President Clinton, on the anniversary of his election, spoke in the church in Tennessee where Martin Luther King, Jr., had delivered his last sermon. Inspired by the place and the occasion, he made one of the most eloquent speeches of his presidency. What would King have said, he asked, had he lived to see this day? "He would say, I did not live and die to see the American family destroyed. I did not live and die to see thirteen-year-old boys get automatic weapons and gun down nine-year-olds just for the kick of it. I did not live and die to see young people destroy their lives with drugs and then build fortunes destroying the lives of others. This is not what I came here to do. I fought for freedom, he would say, but not for the freedom of people to kill each other with reckless abandon; not for the freedom of children to have children and the fathers of the children walk away from them and abandon them as if they don't amount to anything. I fought for people to have the right to work, but not have whole communities and people abandoned. This is not what I lived and died for." After describing what his administration was doing to curb drugs and violence, the President concluded that the government alone could not do the job. The problem was caused by "the breakdown of the family, the community and the disappearance of jobs," and unless we "reach deep inside to the values, the spirit, the soul and the truth of human nature, none of the other things we seek to do will ever take us where we need to go.
Gertrude Himmelfarb (The De-moralization Of Society: From Victorian Virtues to Modern Values)
I was in the army.... We went to fight a bad white man, or so the whites told us. We had meetings that were called orientation and education. There were films. It was to show us how this bad white man was doing terrible things in his country. Everybody was angry after the films, and eager to fight. Except me. I was only there because the army paid more than an Indian can earn anywhere else. So I was not angry, but puzzled. There was nothing that this white leader did that the white leaders in this country do not also do. They told us about a place named Lidice. It was much like Wounded Knee. They told us of families moved thousands of miles to be destroyed. It was much like the Trail of Tears. They told us of how this man ruled his nation, so that none dared disobey him. It was much like the way white men work in corporations in New York City, as Sam has described it to me. I asked another soldier about this, a black white man. He was easier to talk to than the regular white man. I asked him what he thought of the orientation and education. He said it was shit, and he spoke from the heart! I thought about it a long time, and I knew he was right. The orientation and education was shit.
Robert Shea (The Eye in the Pyramid (Illuminatus, #1))
There is some confusion as to what magic actually is. I think this can be cleared up if you just look at the very earliest descriptions of magic. Magic in its earliest form is often referred to as “the art”. I believe this is completely literal. I believe that magic is art and that art, whether it be writing, music, sculpture, or any other form is literally magic. Art is, like magic, the science of manipulating symbols, words, or images, to achieve changes in consciousness. The very language about magic seems to be talking as much about writing or art as it is about supernatural events. A grimmoir for example, the book of spells is simply a fancy way of saying grammar. Indeed, to cast a spell, is simply to spell, to manipulate words, to change people's consciousness. And I believe that this is why an artist or writer is the closest thing in the contemporary world that you are likely to see to a Shaman. I believe that all culture must have arisen from cult. Originally, all of the faucets of our culture, whether they be in the arts or sciences were the province of the Shaman. The fact that in present times, this magical power has degenerated to the level of cheap entertainment and manipulation, is, I think a tragedy. At the moment the people who are using Shamanism and magic to shape our culture are advertisers. Rather than try to wake people up, their Shamanism is used as an opiate to tranquilize people, to make people more manipulable. Their magic box of television, and by their magic words, their jingles can cause everyone in the country to be thinking the same words and have the same banal thoughts all at exactly the same moment. In all of magic there is an incredibly large linguistic component. The Bardic tradition of magic would place a bard as being much higher and more fearsome than a magician. A magician might curse you. That might make your hands lay funny or you might have a child born with a club foot. If a Bard were to place not a curse upon you, but a satire, then that could destroy you. If it was a clever satire, it might not just destroy you in the eyes of your associates; it would destroy you in the eyes of your family. It would destroy you in your own eyes. And if it was a finely worded and clever satire that might survive and be remembered for decades, even centuries. Then years after you were dead people still might be reading it and laughing at you and your wretchedness and your absurdity. Writers and people who had command of words were respected and feared as people who manipulated magic. In latter times I think that artists and writers have allowed themselves to be sold down the river. They have accepted the prevailing belief that art and writing are merely forms of entertainment. They’re not seen as transformative forces that can change a human being; that can change a society. They are seen as simple entertainment; things with which we can fill 20 minutes, half an hour, while we’re waiting to die. It’s not the job of the artist to give the audience what the audience wants. If the audience knew what they needed, then they wouldn’t be the audience. They would be the artists. It is the job of artists to give the audience what they need.
Alan Moore
In the classic Zen in the Art of Archery, Eugen Herrigel’s teacher urged him always to take his next shot unburdened by previous failures to hit the target; as he improved, his teacher urged him not to be influenced by his successes either, to stay in the present moment.
Alex Soojung-Kim Pang (The Distraction Addiction: Getting the Information You Need and the Communication You Want, Without Enraging Your Family, Annoying Your Colleagues, and Destroying Your Soul)
do you or don't you know the two worlds I'm talking about, the world that doesn't exist where you wish you could be on the dirt road that stretches out of Idaho away from the cave and family? The girl you want lives there. All my life I've wanted to be the grand gesture that forces the mouth open in disbelief Instead I was the lamp cord, collecting dust and never moving. It's easy to be the destroyed one.
Ali Liebegott (The Beautifully Worthless)
A man hits me--I hit the man a little harder--then he won't do it again.' Unfortunately he did do it again--a little harder still. The effort to hit harder carried on the action and reaction till society, hitting hardest of all, set up a system of legal punishment, of unlimited severity. It imprisoned, it mutilated, it tortured, it killed; it destroyed whole families, and razed contumelious cities to the ground.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman (The Man-Made World)
What we want is to destroy our false, inorganic connections, especially those related to money, and re-establish the living organic connections, with the cosmos, the sun and earth, with mankind and nation and family. Start with the sun, and the rest will slowly, slowly happen.
D.H. Lawrence
Oh, I was lucky, you know, to get anyone. I was what they called an old bride of twenty-six. Of course I married him. Everyone needs to keep something private from their family. Like a shutter in a rainstorm, banging against the window, I venture forth, retreat back, try afresh, retreat again. Nothing changes in my life and yet nothing is the same. That did not help, Ed knew as the words hung between them and he had that all-too-familiar sensation of wanting to claw them from the air and stuff them back in his mouth. We were all in small pieces that didn't fit together, too many countries, too many scars, too many secrets inside us. How do you make a stranger so intimate when they could easily destroy you?
Tracy Chevalier (Reader, I Married Him: Stories Inspired by Jane Eyre)
Indeed, a bird is made in such a way that it can fly, gather food and build a nest, and when I see a bird doing these things I rejoice. Goats, hares and wolves are made in order to eat, multiply and feed their families, and when they do this I feel quite sure that they are happy and that their lives are meaningful. What should a man do? He too must work for his existence, just as the animals do, but with the difference that he will perish if he does it alone, for he must work for an existence, not just for himself, but for everyone. And when he does this I feel quite sure that he is happy and that his life has meaning. And what had I been doing for all those thirty years of conscious life? Far from working for an existence for everyone, I had not even done so for myself. I had lived as a parasite and when I asked myself why I lived, I received the answer: for nothing. If the meaning of human existence lies in working to procure it I had spent thirty years attempting, not to procure it, but to destroy it for myself and for others. How then could I get any answer other than that my life is evil and meaningless? Indeed it was evil and meaningless.
Leo Tolstoy (A Confession and Other Religious Writings)
I’ve been chained to my bathroom scale for two decades now. I’ve used the number on my scale to tell me if I’m valuable or not. I’ve let the number on my scale destroy many beautiful opportunities in my life such as scheduling family photos, having fun at the beach, or giving myself 100% in intimacy. I’ve let the number on the scale tell me if I should be confident in who I am. I’ve let the number on the scale tell me if I am worthy of kind thoughts from others. Ultimately, I’ve always let some ridiculous number on the bathroom scale tell me whether or not I should love myself.
Dan Pearce (Single Dad Laughing)
The power of the word is completely misused in hell. We use the word to curse, to blame, to find guilt, to destroy. Of course, we also use it in the right way, but not too often. Mostly we use the word to spread our personal poison - to express anger, jealousy, envy, and hate. The word is pure magic - the most powerful gift we have as humans - and we use it against ourselves. We plan revenge. We create chaos with the word. We use the word to create hate between different races, between different people, between families, between nations. We misuse the word so often, and this misuse is how we create and perpetuate the dream of hell. Misuse of the word is how we pull each other down and keep each other in a state of fear and doubt.
Miguel Ruiz
When poachers target the matriarchs or older females—as they often do, because older elephants usually have larger tusks—they also destroy that lifetime of learning and knowledge. For an elephant family, the death of a matriarch must feel like losing an encyclopedia, or an entire library—and for us, the loss makes stopping the poaching even more urgent, if only to protect the experienced matriarchs, who keep their families out of harm’s way.
Virginia Morell (Animal Wise: The Thoughts and Emotions of Our Fellow Creatures)
Bosnia's war had its visual hallmarks. Parks that were turned into cemeteries, refugee families piled onto horse-drawn carts, stop-or-die checkpoints with mines across the road. The most hideous hallmark of all was the blackened patch of ground in the center of town. It always meant the same thing, a destroyed mosque. The goal of ethnic cleansing was not simply to get rid of Muslims; it was to destroy all traces that they had ever lived in Bosnia. The goal was to kill history. If you want to do that, then you must rip out history's heart, which in the case of Bosnia's Muslim community meant the destruction of its mosques. Once that was done, you could reinvent the past in whatever distorted form you wanted, like Frankenstein. p. 85
Peter Maass (Love Thy Neighbor: A Story of War)
I have beheld the power of God manifest in my home and in my ministry. I have seen evil rebuked and the elements controlled. I know what it means to have mountains of difficulty and ominous Red Seas part. I know what it means to have the destroying angel "pass by them." To have received the authority and to have exercised the power of "the Holy Priesthood, after the Order of the Son of God," is as great a blessing for me and for my family as I could ever hope for in this world. And that, in the end, is the meaning of the priesthood in everyday terms--its unequaled, unending, constant capacity to bless.
Jeffrey R. Holland (Created for Greater Things)
Carnage reached out his hand, his claws forever there, unable to retract, for Destroy to shake. Destroy nodded, reached out his own hand, and they shook hands for the first time in many, many years. Destroy said, “Truce?” Carnage nodded, “‘Es” Destroy said, “We’ll protect our families. Each other. What’s past is past.” Carnage nodded once, sharply, “‘Es.” Then he slammed his arm across his own chest, his hand fisted, giving a vow — to protect Destroy and watch his back.
Sandra R. Neeley (Destroy (Whispers from the Bayou #2))
Irene nodded. She couldn't say it but she knew she was destroying a world. A little culture. It was the known and safe way of behaving in the family. All the rituals, wrong or sick, it didn't matter, good or bad, would be useless. All the strategies. They knew the familiar treacheries, but now they would be open to new dangers.
Louise Erdrich (Shadow Tag)
[Nazis] believed that the women’s movement was part of an international Jewish conspiracy to subvert the German family and thus destroy the German race. The movement, it claimed, was encouraging women to assert their economic independence and to neglect their proper task of producing children. It was spreading the feminine doctrines of pacifism, democracy and “materialism.” By encouraging contraception and abortion and so lowering the birth rate, it was attacking the very existence of the German people.
Jason Stanley (How Fascism Works: The Politics of Us and Them)
It’s not the drug that causes the junkie it’s the laws that causes the junkie because of course the drug laws means that he can’t go and get help because he is afraid of being arrested. He also can’t have a normal life because the war on drugs has made drugs so expensive and has made drug contracts unenforceable which means they can only be enforced through criminal violence. It becomes so profitable to sell drugs to addicts that the drug dealers have every incentive to get people addicted by offering free samples and to concentrate their drug to the highest possible dose to provoke the greatest amount of addiction as possible. Overall it is a completely staggering and completely satanic human calamity. It is the new gulag and in some ways much more brutal than the soviet gulag. In the soviet gulags there was not a huge prison rape problem and in this situation your life could be destroyed through no fault of your own through sometimes, no involvement of your own and the people who end up in the drug culture are walled off and separated as a whole and thrown into this demonic, incredibly dangerous, underworld were the quality of the drugs can’t be verified. Were contracts can’t be enforced except through breaking peoples kneecaps and the price of drugs would often led them to a life of crime. People say “well, I became a drug addict and I lost my house, family, and my job and all that.” It’s not because you became a drug addict but, because there is a war on drugs which meant that you had to pay so much for the drugs that you lost your house because you couldn't go and find help or substitutes and ended up losing your job. It’s all nonsense. The government can’t keep drugs out of prisons for heaven’s sakes. The war on drugs is not designed to be won. Its designed to continue so that the government can get the profits of drug running both directly through the CIA and other drug runners that are affiliated or through bribes and having the power of terrorizing the population. To frame someone for murder is pretty hard but to palm a packet of cocaine and say that you found it in their car is pretty damn easy and the government loves having that power." -Stefan Molyneux
Stefan Molyneux
Today our home was destroyed by fire. The children are grieving and shaken, but Paul and I are so grateful for family, friends, and strangers who have come to our aid. We have lost “everything” but feel rich and free. I climbed into bed next to Paul, who was already asleep. I looked up into the darkness. Everything had changed. Who could believe it? I thought of the children—safe and so close—of Jack at the foot of our bed, and Paul there beside me. Everything had changed, and anything that mattered remained.
Alison Hodgson (The Pug List: A Ridiculous Little Dog, a Family Who Lost Everything, and How They All Found Their Way Home)
He looked down at the glass again. ‘I care that these things happen, that we poison ourselves and our progeny, that we knowingly destroy our future, but I do not believe that there is anything - and I repeat, anything - that can be done to prevent it. We are a nation of egoists. It is our glory, but it will be our destruction, for none of us can be made to concern ourselves about something as abstract as “the common good”. The best of us can rise to feeling concern for our families, but as a nation we are incapable of more.’ ‘I refuse to believe that.’ Brunetti said. ‘Your refusal to believe it,’ the Count said with a smile that was almost tender, ‘makes it no less true, Guido.
Donna Leon (Death in a Strange Country (Commissario Brunetti, #2))
Long black hair and deep clean blue eyes and skin pale white and lips blood red she's small and thin and worn and damaged. She is standing there. What are you doing here? I was taking a walk and I saw you and I followed you. What do you want. I want you to stop. I breathe hard, stare hard, tense and coiled. There is still more tree for me to destroy I want that fucking tree. She smiles and she steps towards me, toward toward toward me, and she opens he r arms and I'm breathing hard staring hard tense and coiled she puts her arms around me with one hand not he back of my head and she pulls me into her arms and she holds me and she speaks. It's okay. I breathe hard, close my eyes, let myself be held. It's okay. Her voice calms me and her arms warm me and her smell lightens me and I can feel her heart beat and my heart slows and I stop shaking an the Fury melts into her safety an she holds me and she says. Okay. Okay. Okay. Something else comes and it makes me feel weak and scared and fragile and I don't want to be hurt and this feeling is the feeling I have when I know I can be hurt and hurt deeper and more terribly than anything physical and I always fight it and control it and stop it but her voice calms me and her arms warm me and her smell lightens me and I can feel her heart beat and if she let me go right now I would fall and the need and confusion and fear and regret and horror and shame and weakness and fragility are exposed to the soft strength of her open arms and her simple word okay and I start to cry. I start to cry. I want to cry. It comes in waves. THe waves roll deep and from deep the deep within me and I hold her and she holds me tighter and i let her and I let it and I let this and I have not felt this way this vulnerability or allowed myself to feel this way this vulnerability since I was ten years old and I don't know why I haven't and I don't know why I am now and I only know that I am and that it is scary terrifying frightening worse and better than anything I've ever felt crying in her arms just crying in her ams just crying. She guides me to the ground, but she doesn't let me go. THe Gates are open and thirteen years of addiction, violence, hell and their accompaniments are manifesting themselves in dense tears and heavy sobs and a shortness of breath and a profound sense of loss. THe loss inhabits, fills and overwhelms me. It is the loss of a childhood of being a Teeenager of normalcy of happiness of love of trust anon reason of God of Family of friends of future of potential of dignity of humanity of sanity f myself of everything everything everything. I lost everything and I am lost reduced to a mass of mourning, sadness, grief, anguish and heartache. I am lost. I have lost. Everything. Everything. It's wet and Lilly cradles me like a broken Child. My face and her shoulder and her shirt and her hair are wet with my tears. I slow down and I start to breathe slowly and deeply and her hair smells clean and I open my eyes because I want to see it an it is all that I can see. It is jet black almost blue and radiant with moisture. I want to touch it and I reach with one of my hands and I run my hand from the crown along her neck and her back to the base of her rib and it is a thin perfect sheer and I let it slowly drop from the tips of my fingers and when it is gone I miss it. I do it again and again and she lets me do it and she doesn't speak she just cradles me because I am broken. I am broken. Broken. THere is noise and voices and Lilly pulls me in tighter and tighter and I know I pull her in tighter and tighter and I can feel her heart beating and I know she can feel my heart beating and they are speaking our hearts are speaking a language wordless old unknowable and true and we're pulling and holding and the noise is closer and the voices louder and Lilly whispers. You're okay. You're okay. You're okay.
James Frey
I think you’ll find that when you let Him, God is a good defense attorney. Trust it to Him. And then you can turn your focus to the real enemy.” “The real enemy?” “The one that wants to remain hidden. The one that wants to distract you, deceive you, and divide you from the Lord and from your husband. That’s how he works. Satan comes to steal, kill, and destroy. And he is stealing your joy, killing your faith, and trying to destroy your family.” The old woman was fiery now, like an old-time preacher just getting wound up and ready to pound the pulpit. “If I were you, I would get my heart right with God. And you need to do your fightin’ in prayer. You need to kick the real enemy out of your home with the Word of God.
Chris Fabry (War Room: Prayer Is a Powerful Weapon)
The nearer a soul is to God, the more it deserves our esteem; the closer the ties that bit it to us, the more sensible is our love for it, and the more whole-hearted should be the devotion we show in all that concerns family, country, vocation, and friendship. Thus, instead of destroying patriotism, charity exalts it, as we see in the case of St. Joan of Arc or St. Louis.
Réginald Garrigou-Lagrange (Providence: God's loving care for men and the need for confidence in Almighty God)
Six months ago when she first came up with the idea to kill Wilson, back when she was living in Memphis, she'd started going to church again. Since she was spending so much time thinking about sinister things, the least she could do, she reasoned, was to think about God and his love twice a week at church so that she wouldn't become a total sociopath. And rather than kill other people who were stand-ins for the person she really wanted to kill, like serial killers did, she'd be kind and generous to others and hone in on the one who deserved to die. And her plan had worked extremely well. Since she'd started planning to kill Wilson, and then decided to destroy his family instead, she felt no animosity toward anyone but him. Almost none at all!
Elizabeth Stuckey-French (The Revenge of the Radioactive Lady)
To stop the drug traffic is not the best way to prevent people from using drugs. The best way is to practice the Fifth Precept and to help others practice. Consuming mindfully is the intelligent way to stop ingesting toxins into our consciousness and prevent the malaise from becoming overwhelming. Learning the art of touching and ingesting refreshing, nourishing, and healing elements is the way to restore our balance and transform the pain and loneliness that are already in us. To do this, we have to practice together. The practice of mindful consuming should become a national policy. It should be considered true peace education... Those who are destroying themselves, their families, and their society by intoxicating themselves are not doing it intentionally. Their pain and loneliness are overwhelming, and they want to escape. They need to be helped, not punished. Only understanding and compassion on a collective level can liberate us (78-79).
Thich Nhat Hanh (For a Future to Be Possible: Buddhist Ethics for Everyday Life)
Look at them, the bugs. Humans have used everything in their power to extinguish them: every kind of poison, aerial sprays, introducing and cultivating their natural predators, searching for and destroying their eggs, using genetic modification to sterilize them, burning with fire, drowning with water. Every family has bug spray, every desk has a flyswatter under it… this long war has been going on for the entire history of human civilization. But the outcome is still in doubt. The bugs have not been eliminated. They still proudly live between the heavens and the earth, and their numbers have not diminished from the time before the appearance of the humans. The Trisolarans who deemed the humans bugs seemed to have forgotten one fact: The bugs have never been truly defeated. A small black cloud covered the sun and cast a moving shadow against the ground. This was not a common cloud, but a swarm of locusts that had just arrived. As the swarm landed in the fields nearby, the three men stood in the middle of a living shower, feeling the dignity of life on Earth. Ding Yi and Wang Miao poured the two bottles of wine they had with them on the ground beneath their feet, a toast for the bugs.
Liu Cixin (The Three-Body Problem (Remembrance of Earth’s Past, #1))
Although the ending was more John Carpenter than John Updike, Carroll hadn't come across anything like it in any of the horror magazines, either, not lately. It was, for twenty-five pages, the almost completely naturalistic story of a woman being destroyed a little at a time by the steady wear of survivor's guilt. It concerned itself with tortured family relationships, shitty jobs, the struggle for money. Carroll had forgotten what it was like to come across the bread of everyday life in a short story. Most horror fiction didn't bother with anything except rare bleeding meat. ("Best New Horror")
Joe Hill (20th Century Ghosts)
She came by..... I couldn't help but look...only to look and she smiled back!Wheeew, she blown me away,to realize i made her my goal from the hands of the man he have at present....A family of her own i never want to destroy laid on the line.... a story was made, a secret was solemnly shared by two...Oh i loved her and she loved me too.... most of the time she got scared, i got scared too..for fighting aginst the odds and she stayed back...i stood up to break....flew just to fall....only to realize a love i have no control of and no one can......i am not to bid goodbye ...I can't ...only to keep a love unrequited like mine.
Bob Villarosa
When I ask Kim what a capitalist is, he tells me it is someone who is from the city. He says the Khmer Rouge government views science, technology, and anything mechanical as evil and therefore must be destroyed. The Angkar says the ownership of cars and electronics such as watches, clocks, and televisions created a deep class division between the rich and the poor. This allowed the urban rich to flaunt their wealth while the rural poor struggled to feed and clothe their families. These devices have been imported from foreign countries and thus are contaminated. Imports are defined as evil because they allowed foreign countries a way to invade Cambodia, not just physically but also culturally. So now these goods are abolished. Only trucks are allowed to operate, to relocate people and carry weapons to silence any voices of dissent against the Angkar.
Loung Ung (First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers)
The boy went back to his family there, in the distance, in a distance he did not find there in the distance. My grandfather died counting sunsets, seasons, and heartbeats on the fingers of his withered hands. He dropped like a fruit forbidden a branch to lean its age against. They destroyed his heart. He wearied of waiting here, in Damur. He said goodbye to friends, water pipe, and children and took me and went back to find what was no longer his to find there. Here the number of aliens increased, and refugee camps got bigger. A war went by, then two, three, and four. The homeland got farther and farther away, and the children got farther and farther from mother's milk after they had tasted the milk of UNRWA. So they bought guns to get closer to a homeland flying out of their reach. They brought their identity back into being, re-created the homeland, and followed their path, only to have it blocked by the guardians of civil wars. They defended their steps, but then path parted from path, the orphan lived in the skin of the orphan, and one refugee camp went into another.
Mahmoud Darwish
I wish you could simply extirpate violence and war from the world, abolish all the armed forces, and destroy all the bombs. But this is probably not very realistic. Ultimately, everyone has to start with themselves. Many want to be active somewhere else, at best in a country where they don't currently live. But what's the point, if there's no peace in your own life? So be at peace with yourself. And how? Through peaceful dealings with others. Start by ensuring peace at home before you go out into the world. Or work for peace in both spheres. You can't be working for a peace camp in the Middle East during the day and then in the evening have a quarrel with your family over the phone.
Jón Gnarr (Gnarr: How I Became the Mayor of a Large City in Iceland and Changed the World)
Much of the back row of America, both white and black, is humiliated. The good jobs they could get straight out of high school and gave the stability of a lifelong career have left. The churches providing them a place in the world have been cast as irrational, backward, and lacking. The communities that provided pride are dying, and into this vacuum have come drugs. Their entire worldview is collapsing, and then they are told this is their own fault: they suck at school and are dumb, not focused enough, not disciplined enough. It is a wholesale rejection that cuts to the core. It isn’t just about them; it is about their friends, family, congregation, union, and all they know. Whole towns and neighborhoods have been forgotten and destroyed, and when they point this out, they are told they should just get up and move (as if anyone can do that) and if they don’t, then they are clearly lazy, weak, and unmotivated.
Chris Arnade (Dignity: Seeking Respect in Back Row America)
People spoke to foreigners with an averted gaze, and everybody seemed to know somebody who had just vanished. The rumors of what had happened to them were fantastic and bizarre though, as it turned out, they were only an understatement of the real thing. Before going to see General Videla […], I went to […] check in with Los Madres: the black-draped mothers who paraded, every week, with pictures of their missing loved ones in the Plaza Mayo. (‘Todo mi familia!’ as one elderly lady kept telling me imploringly, as she flourished their photographs. ‘Todo mi familia!’) From these and from other relatives and friends I got a line of questioning to put to the general. I would be told by him, they forewarned me, that people ‘disappeared’ all the time, either because of traffic accidents and family quarrels or, in the dire civil-war circumstances of Argentina, because of the wish to drop out of a gang and the need to avoid one’s former associates. But this was a cover story. Most of those who disappeared were openly taken away in the unmarked Ford Falcon cars of the Buenos Aires military police. I should inquire of the general what precisely had happened to Claudia Inez Grumberg, a paraplegic who was unable to move on her own but who had last been seen in the hands of his ever-vigilant armed forces [….] I possess a picture of the encounter that still makes me want to spew: there stands the killer and torturer and rape-profiteer, as if to illustrate some seminar on the banality of evil. Bony-thin and mediocre in appearance, with a scrubby moustache, he looks for all the world like a cretin impersonating a toothbrush. I am gripping his hand in a much too unctuous manner and smiling as if genuinely delighted at the introduction. Aching to expunge this humiliation, I waited while he went almost pedantically through the predicted script, waving away the rumored but doubtless regrettable dematerializations that were said to be afflicting his fellow Argentines. And then I asked him about Senorita Grumberg. He replied that if what I had said was true, then I should remember that ‘terrorism is not just killing with a bomb, but activating ideas. Maybe that’s why she’s detained.’ I expressed astonishment at this reply and, evidently thinking that I hadn’t understood him the first time, Videla enlarged on the theme. ‘We consider it a great crime to work against the Western and Christian style of life: it is not just the bomber but the ideologist who is the danger.’ Behind him, I could see one or two of his brighter staff officers looking at me with stark hostility as they realized that the general—El Presidente—had made a mistake by speaking so candidly. […] In response to a follow-up question, Videla crassly denied—‘rotondamente’: ‘roundly’ denied—holding Jacobo Timerman ‘as either a journalist or a Jew.’ While we were having this surreal exchange, here is what Timerman was being told by his taunting tormentors: Argentina has three main enemies: Karl Marx, because he tried to destroy the Christian concept of society; Sigmund Freud, because he tried to destroy the Christian concept of the family; and Albert Einstein, because he tried to destroy the Christian concept of time and space. […] We later discovered what happened to the majority of those who had been held and tortured in the secret prisons of the regime. According to a Navy captain named Adolfo Scilingo, who published a book of confessions, these broken victims were often destroyed as ‘evidence’ by being flown out way over the wastes of the South Atlantic and flung from airplanes into the freezing water below. Imagine the fun element when there’s the surprise bonus of a Jewish female prisoner in a wheelchair to be disposed of… we slide open the door and get ready to roll her and then it’s one, two, three… go!
Christopher Hitchens (Hitch 22: A Memoir)
I told myself being a Perez meant more than being Cuban, that my responsibility to my family, to do what was expected, to be the woman my parents wanted me to be meant more than fighting for what I believed in, for speaking out against Batista's tyranny. And the whole time we were pretending our way of life was fine, the "paradise" we'd created was really a fragile deal with a mercurial devil, and the ground beneath us shifted and cracked, destroying the world as we knew it. Fidel has shown us the cost of our silence. The danger of waiting too long to speak, of another's voice being louder than ours because we were too busy living in the bubbles we'd created to realize the rest of Cuba had changed and left us behind.
Chanel Cleeton (Next Year in Havana (The Cuba Saga, #1))
Dr Leila Gupta found that most children had witnessed extreme violence and did not expect to survive. Two-thirds of the children interviewed had seen somebody killed by a rocket and scattered corpses or body parts. More than 70 per cent had lost a family member and no longer trusted adults. ‘They all suffer from flashbacks, nightmares and loneliness. Many said they felt their life was not worth living anymore,’ said Dr Gupta. Every norm of family life had been destroyed in the war.
Ahmed Rashid (Taliban: Militant Islam, Oil & Fundamentalism in Central Asia)
What if you wake up hung-over the following morning, not dead, but realizing that you had killed somebody? Even worse, what if you wake up in the morning realizing you destroyed the things you loved most in your life? When she regained consciousness in the hospital scared and alone, Kate realized the nightmare was a reality… her parents were dead… her soul-mate was in prison… her life would never be the same. Through the eyes of many, Troy Trindle had it all… he was good-looking, popular, captain of the football team and dating the head cheerleader. What he lacked were the basic necessities; food, shelter and a family. Kate and Troy’s worlds collide when she moves to Alabama to resume training for a spot on the Olympic Gymnastics Team.
Wendi Farquharson Finn (One Fateful Night (One Fateful Night, #1))
Look at them, the bugs. Humans have used everything in their power to extinguish them: every kind of poison, aerial sprays, introducing and cultivating their natural predators, searching for and destroying their eggs, using genetic modification to sterilize them, burning with fire, drowning with water. Every family has bug spray, every desk has a fly-swatter under it... this long war has been going on for the entire history of human civilization. But the outcome is still in doubt. The bugs have not been eliminated.
Liu Cixin (The Three-Body Problem (Remembrance of Earth’s Past #1))
A classmate from elementary school had married and divorced. Yamada was now raising two children on his own and going gray, which made her laugh. Kazumi, who had been living with a man, went home to her family. Yuusuke, who was trying to become a public servant, failed his test. Yamazaki, who was making erotic games, had all his dreams destroyed. "I'm testing my own talent. It doesn't have to be an erotic game, but I'll do. . . I'll do something!" When he proclaimed this, drunk from sake, his future already was set as a dairy farmer, chasing after cows. I no longer could see how he could escape it. At reunions and parties, everyone laughed and made a big fuss. Those events were fun, as was karaoke. Everyone had a good time and seemed sure that the future would be perfect: We could become anything! We could do anything! We could become happy! These things were true—but steadily, very steadily, at a speed so terribly slow we didn't even notice it, we were being run down. There was nothing we could do, even if we were in trouble, defeated, of crying. Every one of us eventually had some terrible experiences. The only difference was whether it would happen sooner or later; but in the end, we all would fall into some really unbearable situation. I was scared. I was scared of all sorts of things.
Tatsuhiko Takimoto (Welcome to the N.H.K.)
Whereas in many Greek houses the bathroom was connected to the kitchen area, in Kerkouane many were situated off the entrance vestibule or passageway leading from the street into the house. Although there were pragmatic reasons for such a location, such as the availability of drainage and water, the choice also suggests that in the Punic world the washing of the body was seen as an important ritual act of purification that marked the transition from the public sphere outside the house to the private space of the family.
Richard Miles (Carthage Must Be Destroyed: The Rise and Fall of an Ancient Civilization)
Parvati has wrathful incarnations surely, As Durga, Kali, Shitala Devi, Tara, Chandi, She has benevolent forms like Katyayani, Kamalatmika, Bhuvaneshwari, Lalita, Gauri. Parvati as the Goddess of Power does be, Who source of all forms and of all beings be, In Her all the power but exists undoubtedly, And She who the destroys all fear clearly be. The apparent contradiction that Parvati be, The fair one, Gauri, and the dark one, Kali, Suggests the placid wife, can change fully, To her primal chaotic nature as powerful Kali.
Munindra Misra (Lord Shiv & Family: In English Rhyme)
He wanted suddenly to stand up and shout, telling them that he had killed a rich white girl, a girl whose family was known to all of them. Yes; if he did that a look of startled horror would come over their faces. But, no. He would not do that, even though the satisfaction would be keen. He was so greatly outnumbered that he would be arrested, tried, and executed. He wanted the keen thrill of startling them, but felt that the cost was too great. He wished that he had the power to say what he had done without fear of being arrested; he wished that he could be an idea in their minds; that his black face and the image of smothering Mary and cutting off her head and burning her could hover before their eyes as a terrible picture of reality which they could see and feel and yet not destroy. He was not satisfied with the way things stood now; he was a man who had come in sight of a goal, then had won it, and in winning it had seen just within his grasp another goal, higher, greater. He had learned to shout and had shouted and no ear had heard him (114).
Richard Wright (Native Son)
A cult is a group of people who share an obsessive devotion to a person or idea. The cults described in this book use violent tactics to recruit, indoctrinate, and keep members. Ritual abuse is defined as the emotionally, physically, and sexually abusive acts performed by violent cults. Most violent cults do not openly express their beliefs and practices, and they tend to live separately in noncommunal environments to avoid detection. Some victims of ritual abuse are children abused outside the home by nonfamily members, in public settings such as day care. Other victims are children and teenagers who are forced by their parents to witness and participate in violent rituals. Adult ritual abuse victims often include these grown children who were forced from childhood to be a member of the group. Other adult and teenage victims are people who unknowingly joined social groups or organizations that slowly manipulated and blackmailed them into becoming permanent members of the group. All cases of ritual abuse, no matter what the age of the victim, involve intense physical and emotional trauma. Violent cults may sacrifice humans and animals as part of religious rituals. They use torture to silence victims and other unwilling participants. Ritual abuse victims say they are degraded and humiliated and are often forced to torture, kill, and sexually violate other helpless victims. The purpose of the ritual abuse is usually indoctrination. The cults intend to destroy these victims' free will by undermining their sense of safety in the world and by forcing them to hurt others. In the last ten years, a number of people have been convicted on sexual abuse charges in cases where the abused children had reported elements of ritual child abuse. These children described being raped by groups of adults who wore costumes or masks and said they were forced to witness religious-type rituals in which animals and humans were tortured or killed. In one case, the defense introduced in court photographs of the children being abused by the defendants[.1] In another case, the police found tunnels etched with crosses and pentacles along with stone altars and candles in a cemetery where abuse had been reported. The defendants in this case pleaded guilty to charges of incest, cruelty, and indecent assault.[2] Ritual abuse allegations have been made in England, the United States, and Canada.[3] Many myths abound concerning the parents and children who report ritual abuse. Some people suggest that the tales of ritual abuse are "mass hysteria." They say the parents of these children who report ritual abuse are often overly zealous Christians on a "witch-hunt" to persecute satanists. These skeptics say the parents are fearful of satanism, and they use their knowledge of the Black Mass (a historically well-known, sexualized ritual in which animals and humans are sacrificed) to brainwash their children into saying they were abused by satanists.[4] In 1992 I conducted a study to separate fact from fiction in regard to the disclosures of children who report ritual abuse.[5] The study was conducted through Believe the Children, a national organization that provides support and educational sources for ritual abuse survivors and their families.
Margaret Smith (Ritual Abuse: What it is, Why it Happens, and How to Help)
Hannah Arendt once observed that, in every generation, Western civilization is invaded by barbarians: We call them “children.” The family is the first line of defense against this barbarian invasion. The metaphor is inapt, because parents aren’t at war with babies themselves. But parents are at war with the darker side of human nature, which we all work to trim away from for our children by inscribing in their hearts notions of decency, fair play, and self-restraint. When parents fail to do that, other institutions, including the government, try to step in and remedy what they can. But no teacher, counselor, social service worker, priest, rabbi, imam, or police officer will deny that, when the family fails to do its part, the work of every institution downstream of the family becomes that much more difficult.
Jonah Goldberg (Suicide of the West: How the Rebirth of Tribalism, Populism, Nationalism, and Identity Politics is Destroying American Democracy)
Family life always diminishes the energy of a revolutionist. Children must be maintained in security ,and there's the need to work a great deal for one's break. The revolutionist ought without cease to develop every iota of his energy; he must deepen and broaden it; but this demands time. He must always be at the head, because we--the workingmen--are called by the logic of history to destroy the old world, to create the new life; and if we stop, if we yield to exhaustion, or are attracted by the possibility of a little immediate conquest, it's bad--it's almost treachery to the cause. No revolutionist can adhere closely to an individual--walk thorough life side by side with another individual--without distorting his faith; and we must never forget that our aim is not little conquests, but only complete victory!
Maxim Gorky (Mother)
The temporary alliance between the elite and the mob rested largely on this genuine delight with which the former watched the latter destroy respectability. This could be achieved when the German steel barons were forced to deal with and to receive socially Hitler's the housepainter and self-admitted former derelict, as it could be with the crude and vulgar forgeries perpetrated by the totalitarian movements in all fields of intellectual life, insofar as they gathered all the subterranean, nonrespectable elements of European history into one consistent picture. From this viewpoint it was rather gratifying to see that Bolshevism and Nazism began even to eliminate those sources of their own ideologies which had already won some recognition in academic or other official quarters. Not Marx's dialectical materialism, but the conspiracy of 300 families; not the pompous scientificality of Gobineau and Chamberlain, but the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion"; not the traceable influence of the Catholic Church and the role played by anti-clericalism in Latin countries, but the backstairs literature about the Jesuits and the Freemasons became the inspiration for the rewriters of history. The object of the most varied and variable constructions was always to reveal history as a joke, to demonstrate a sphere of secret influences of which the visible, traceable, and known historical reality was only the outward façade erected explicitly to fool the people. To this aversion of the intellectual elite for official historiography, to its conviction that history, which was a forgery anyway, might as well be the playground of crackpots, must be added the terrible, demoralizing fascination in the possibility that gigantic lies and monstrous falsehoods can eventually be established as unquestioned facts, that man may be free to change his own past at will, and that the difference between truth and falsehood may cease to be objective and become a mere matter of power and cleverness, of pressure and infinite repetition. Not Stalin’s and Hitler's skill in the art of lying but the fact that they were able to organize the masses into a collective unit to back up their lies with impressive magnificence, exerted the fascination. Simple forgeries from the viewpoint of scholarship appeared to receive the sanction of history itself when the whole marching reality of the movements stood behind them and pretended to draw from them the necessary inspiration for action.
Hannah Arendt (The Origins of Totalitarianism)
Part of Wordsworth’s complaint was directed towards the smoke, congestion, poverty and ugliness of cities, but clean-air bills and slum clearance would not, by themselves, have eradiated his critique. For it was the effect of cities on our souls, rather than on our health, that concerned him. The poet accused the cities of fostering a family of life-destroying emotions: anxiety about our position in the social hierarchy, envy at the success of others, pride and desire to shine in the eyes of strangers. City dwellers had no perspective, he alleged, they were in thrall of what was spoken of in the street or at the dinner table. However well provided for, they had a relentless desire to new things, which they did not genuinely lack and on which happiness did not depend. And in this crowded, anxious sphere, it seemed harder that it did on an isolated homestead to begin sincere relationships with others. ‘One thought baffled my understanding,’ wrote Wordsworth of his residence in London: ‘How men lived even next-door neighbors, as we say, yet still strangers, and knowing not each other’s names.
Alain de Botton (The Art of Travel)
Imagine life as a game where you’re juggling five balls in the air. The five balls are work, family, health, friends, and happiness. You’ll soon find out that your work is a rubber ball; if you drop it, it bounces back into your hands. But the other four balls are made of glass. If you drop any of them, they’ll be forever damaged, broken, or completely destroyed. They’ll never be the same again. So work effectively when you’re at work and go home on time. Give the necessary time to your family and your friends and look after yourself. A value only has value if it is valued.3
Rasmus Hougaard (One Second Ahead: Enhance Your Performance at Work with Mindfulness)
I’m not a man, I can’t earn a living, buy new things for my family. I have acne and a small peter. I’m not a man. I don’t like football, boxing and cars. I like to express my feeling. I even like to put an arm around my friend’s shoulder. I’m not a man. I won’t play the role assigned to me- the role created by Madison Avenue, Playboy, Hollywood and Oliver Cromwell, Television does not dictate my behavior. I’m not a man. Once when I shot a squirrel I swore that I would never kill again. I gave up meat. The sight of blood makes me sick. I like flowers. I’m not a man. I went to prison resisting the draft. I do not fight when real men beat me up and call me queer. I dislike violence. I’m not a man. I have never raped a woman. I don’t hate blacks. I do not get emotional when the flag is waved. I do not think I should love America or leave it. I think I should laugh at it. I’m not a man. I have never had the clap. I’m not a man. Playboy is not my favorite magazine. I’m not a man. I cry when I’m unhappy. I’m not a man. I do not feel superior to women I’m not a man. I don’t wear a jockstrap. I’m not a man. I write poetry. I’m not a man. I meditate on peace and love. I’m not a man. I don’t want to destroy you
Harold Norse
They taught the women that the home is a shame and in doing so, they successfully decomposed nations. Instead of it being the greatest honour to build a family, it became a laughingstock. And in this becoming, they successfully deconstructed nations. They taught the men that loyalty is merely an option and in doing so, they successfully destroyed nations. Instead of it being the greatest pride to love one woman, it became a joke, a funny side comment. And in this becoming, they successfully poisoned nations. Your home is your atom, your cell, your genome. Your love is your honour, your word, your truth. You wonder why we live in deconstructed nations, you ask one another why you live on torn fibres, cracked ground, and yet you continue to listen to what they tell you. You have put shame where there should be a throne, you have placed a joke where there should be a crown. You have successfully destroyed your nations.
C. JoyBell C.
I once saw a woman wearing a low-cut dress; she had a glazed look in her eyes, and she was walking the streets of Ljubljana when it was five degrees below zero. I thought she must be drunk, and I went to help her, but she refused my offer to lend her my jacket. Perhaps in her world it was summer and her body was warmed by the desire of the person waiting for her. Even if that person only existed in her delirium, she had the right to live and die as she wanted, don’t you think?” Veronika didn’t know what to say, but the madwoman’s words made sense to her. Who knows; perhaps she was the woman who had been seen half-naked walking the streets of Ljubljana? “I’m going to tell you a story,” said Zedka. “A powerful wizard, who wanted to destroy an entire kingdom, placed a magic potion in the well from which all 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 no 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. They 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 the 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 continue ruling 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.” Veronika laughed. “You don’t seem crazy at all,” she said. “But I am, although I’m undergoing treatment since my problem is that I lack a particular chemical. While I hope that the chemical gets rid of my chronic depression, I want to continue being crazy, living my life the way I dream it, and not the way other people want it to be. Do you know what exists out there, beyond the walls of Villete?” “People who have all drunk from the same well.” “Exactly,” said Zedka. “They think they’re normal, because they all do the same thing. Well, I’m going to pretend that I have drunk from the same well as them.
Paulo Coelho (Veronika Decides to Die)
We all have a stake in the truth. Society functions based on an assumption that people will abide by their word - that truth prevails over mendacity. For the most part, it does. If it didn't, relationships would have a short shelf life, commerce would cease, and trust between parents and children would be destroyed. All of us depend on honesty, because when truth is lacking we suffer, and society suffers. When Adolf Hitler lied to Neville Chamberlain, there was not peace in our time, and over fifty million people paid the price with their lives. When Richard Nixon lied to the nation, it destroyed the respect many had for the office of the president. When Enron executives lied to their employees, thousands of lives were ruined overnight. We count on our government and commercial institutions to be honest and truthful. We need and expect our friends and family to be truthful. Truth is essential for all relations be they personal, professional, or civic.
Joe Navarro (What Every Body is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People)
Here’s what presidential candidate Mitt Romney said about Barack Obama: Barack Obama is not a very good President. He said Barack Obama doesn’t do a very good job on the economy; he said that Obama’s foreign policy has a lot of holes in it; he said Obama has done a pretty poor job across the board of working in bipartisan fashion. But, Romney added, Obama’s a good guy. He’s a good family man, a good husband, a man who believes in the basic principles espoused by the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. He is not someone you should be afraid of in any way. Essentially, Romney’s campaign slogan was this: “Obama: Good Guy, Bad President.
Ben Shapiro (How to Debate Leftists and Destroy Them: 11 Rules for Winning the Argument)
Aikido is the Way of Harmony. It brings together people of all races and manifests the original form of all things. The universe has a single source, and from that core all things emerged in a cosmic pattern. At the end of WWII, it become clear that the world needed to be purified of filth and degradation, and that is why Aikido emerged. In order to eliminate war, deception, greed, and hatred, the gods of peace and harmony manifested their powers. All of us in this world are members of the same family, and we should work together to make discord and war disappear from our midst. Without Love, our nation, the world, and the universe will be destroyed.
Morihei Ueshiba (The Art of Peace)
I see that both her parents are here. I'm pleased that they are, because I'd like to take the opportunity, early in what I fear will be a long and bitter battle, to tell them what I think of what they're doing to their child. I'm not spearking here about their fight for custody of her. I'm speaking here about their decision to get divorced. Let's not fool ourselves about what divorce is. Divorice is a failure of parenting. It does more damage to children than just About anything else that might happen to them in the years before they become adults. It takes from them the only things they hold dear. It breaks up their home. It destroys their sense of family. It removes them from the comfort of having one bed, in one safe, secure, familiar house, where they go to sleep every night of the week. It fills them with sadness and, probably, guilt. They can't help but think that they must somehow be to blame. It sets them up for a world in which nothing is certain and nobody can be trusted.
Caroline Overington (Matilda Is Missing)
We are dealing, then, with an absurdity that is not a quirk or an accident, but is fundamental to our character as people. The split between what we think and what we do is profound. It is not just possible, it is altogether to be expected, that our society would produce conservationists who invest in strip-mining companies, just as it must inevitably produce asthmatic executives whose industries pollute the air and vice-presidents of pesticide corporations whose children are dying of cancer. And these people will tell you that this is the way the "real world" works. The will pride themselves on their sacrifices for "our standard of living." They will call themselves "practical men" and "hardheaded realists." And they will have their justifications in abundance from intellectuals, college professors, clergymen, politicians. The viciousness of a mentality that can look complacently upon disease as "part of the cost" would be obvious to any child. But this is the "realism" of millions of modern adults. There is no use pretending that the contradiction between what we think or say and what we do is a limited phenomenon. There is no group of the extra-intelligent or extra-concerned or extra-virtuous that is exempt. I cannot think of any American whom I know or have heard of, who is not contributing in some way to destruction. The reason is simple: to live undestructively in an economy that is overwhelmingly destructive would require of any one of us, or of any small group of us, a great deal more work than we have yet been able to do. How could we divorce ourselves completely and yet responsibly from the technologies and powers that are destroying our planet? The answer is not yet thinkable, and it will not be thinkable for some time -- even though there are now groups and families and persons everywhere in the country who have begun the labor of thinking it. And so we are by no means divided, or readily divisible, into environmental saints and sinners. But there are legitimate distinctions that need to be made. These are distinctions of degree and of consciousness. Some people are less destructive than others, and some are more conscious of their destructiveness than others. For some, their involvement in pollution, soil depletion, strip-mining, deforestation, industrial and commercial waste is simply a "practical" compromise, a necessary "reality," the price of modern comfort and convenience. For others, this list of involvements is an agenda for thought and work that will produce remedies. People who thus set their lives against destruction have necessarily confronted in themselves the absurdity that they have recognized in their society. They have first observed the tendency of modern organizations to perform in opposition to their stated purposes. They have seen governments that exploit and oppress the people they are sworn to serve and protect, medical procedures that produce ill health, schools that preserve ignorance, methods of transportation that, as Ivan Illich says, have 'created more distances than they... bridge.' And they have seen that these public absurdities are, and can be, no more than the aggregate result of private absurdities; the corruption of community has its source in the corruption of character. This realization has become the typical moral crisis of our time. Once our personal connection to what is wrong becomes clear, then we have to choose: we can go on as before, recognizing our dishonesty and living with it the best we can, or we can begin the effort to change the way we think and live.
Wendell Berry (The Unsettling of America: Culture and Agriculture)
Poor L. We are sorry that you left so soon. We are even sorrier to have inveigled our Esmeralda and mermaid into a naughty prank. That sort of game will never again be played with you, firebird. We apollo [apologize]. Remembrance, embers ans membranes of beauty make artists and morons loose all self-control. Pilots of tremendous air ships and coarse, smelly coachmen are known to have been driven insane by a pair of green eyes and a copper curl. We wished to admire and amuse you, BOP [Bird of Paradise]. We went too far. I, Van, went too far. We regret that shameful, though basically innocent scene. These are times of emotional stress and reconditioning. Destroy and forget. Tenderly yours, A & V (in alphabetic order).
Vladimir Nabokov (Ada, or Ardor: A Family Chronicle)
I would like there to exist spaces that are stable, unmoving, intangible, untouched and almost untouchable, unchanging, deep-rooted; places that might be points of reference, of departure, of origin: My birthpalce, the cradle of my family, the house where I may have been born, the tree I may have seen grow (that my father may have planted the day I was born), the attic of my childhood filled with intact memories . . . Such places don't exist, and it's because they do'nt exist that space becomes a question, ceases to be self-evident, ceases to be incorporated, ceases to be appropriated. Space is a doubt: I have constantly to mark it, to designate it, It is never mine, never given to me, I have to conquer it. My spaces are fragile: time is going to wear them away, to destroy them. Nothing will any longer reseble waht was, my memories will betray me, oblivion will infiltrate my memory, I shall look at a few old yellowing photographs with broken edges without recognising them. The words 'Phone directory available within' or 'Snacks served at any hour' will no longer be written up in a semi-circle in white porcelain letter on the window of the little café in the Rue Coquillière. Space melts like sand running through one's fingers. Time bears it away and leaves me only Shapeless shreds: To write: to try meticulously to retain something, to cause something to survive; to wrest a few precise scraps from the void as it grows, to leave somewhere a furrow, a trace, a mark or a few signs. Paris 1973-1974
Georges Perec (Species of Spaces and Other Pieces)
No, he would never know his father, who would continue to sleep over there, his face for ever lost in the ashes. There was a mystery about that man, a mystery he had wanted to penetrate. But after all there was only the mystery of poverty that creates beings without names and without a past, that sends them into the vast throng of the nameless dead who made the world while they themselves were destroyed for ever. For it was just that that his father had in common with the men of the Labrador. The Mahon people of the Sahel, the Alsatians on the high plateaus, with this immense island between sand and sea, which the enormous silence was now beginning to envelop: the silence of anonymity; it enveloped blood and courage and work and instinct, it was at once cruel and compassionate. And he who had wanted to escape from the country without name, from the crowd and from a family without a name, but in whom something had gone on craving darkness and anonymity - he too was a member of the tribe, marching blindly into the night near the old doctor who was panting at his right, listening to the gusts of music coming from the square, seeing once more the hard inscrutable faces of the Arabs around the bandstands, Veillard's laughter and his stubborn face - also seeing with a sweetness and a sorrow that wrung his heart the deathly look on his mother's face at the time of the bombing - wandering though the night of the years in the land of oblivion where each one is the first man, where he had to bring himself up, without a father, having never known those moments when a father would call his son, after waiting for him to reach the age of listening, to tell him the family's secret, or a sorrow of long ago, or the experience of his life, those moments when even the ridiculous and hateful Polonius all of a sudden becomes great when he is speaking to Laertes; and he was sixteen, then he was twenty, and no one had spoken to him, and he had to learn by himself, to grow alone, in fortitude, in strength, find his own morality and truth, at last to be born as a man and then to be born in a harder childbirth, which consists of being born in relation to others, to women, like all the men born in this country who, one by one, try to learn without roots and without faith, and today all of them are threatened with eternal anonymity and the loss of the only consecrated traces of their passage on this earth, the illegible slabs in the cemetery that the night has now covered over; they had to learn how to live in relation to others, to the immense host of the conquerors, now dispossessed, who had preceded them on this land and in whom they now had to recognise the brotherhood of race and destiny.
Albert Camus (The First Man)
We can combat existential anguish – the unbearable lightness of our being – in a variety of ways. We can choose to work, play, destroy, or create. We can allow a variety of cultural factors or other people to define who we are, or we can create a self-definition. We decide what to monitor in the environment. We regulate how much attention we pay to nature, other people, or the self. We can watch and comment upon current cultural events and worldly happenings or withdraw and ignore the external world. We can drink alcohol, dabble with recreational drugs, play videogames, or watch television, films, and sporting events. We can travel, go on nature walks, camp, fish, and hunt, climb mountains, or take whitewater-rafting trips. We can build, paint, sing, create music, write poetry, or read and write books. We can cook, barbeque, eat fine cuisine at restaurants or go on fasts. We can attend church services, worship and pray, or chose to embrace agnosticism or atheism. We can belong to charitable organizations or political parties. We can actively or passively support or oppose social and ecological causes. We can share time with family, friends, co-workers, and acquaintances or live alone and eschew social intermixing.
Kilroy J. Oldster (Dead Toad Scrolls)
have always been fascinated by relationships. I grew up in Britain, where my dad ran a pub, and I spent a lot of time watching people meeting, talking, drinking, brawling, dancing, flirting. But the focal point of my young life was my parents’ marriage. I watched helplessly as they destroyed their marriage and themselves. Still, I knew they loved each other deeply. In my father’s last days, he wept raw tears for my mother although they had been separated for more than twenty years. My response to my parents’ pain was to vow never to get married. Romantic love was, I decided, an illusion and a trap. I was better off on my own, free and unfettered. But then, of course, I fell in love and married. Love pulled me in even as I pushed it away. What was this mysterious and powerful emotion that defeated my parents, complicated my own life, and seemed to be the central source of joy and suffering for so many of us? Was there a way through the maze to enduring love? I followed my fascination with love and connection into counseling and psychology. As part of my training, I studied this drama as described by poets and scientists. I taught disturbed children who had been denied love. I counseled adults who struggled with the loss of love. I worked with families where family members loved each other, but could not come together and could not live apart. Love remained a mystery. Then, in the final phase of getting my doctorate in counseling psychology at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, I started to work with couples. I was instantly mesmerized by the intensity of their struggles and the way they often spoke of their relationships in terms of life and death.
Sue Johnson (Hold Me Tight: Seven Conversations for a Lifetime of Love)
MAY 9 YOU WILL REBUKE ALL THE POWERS OF JEZEBEL OUT OF YOUR LIFE MY CHILD, PLACE yourself securely within the control and power of My Holy Spirit so that you will not be surprised or intimidated by the overwhelming of the spirit of Jezebel in your world today. Allow My presence to permeate your spirit and sensitize you to all the gateways by which the devil and Jezebel may enter your life. Get rid of the gods of Jezebel who creep in unawares into your home. Do not let the diviners and evil prophets of this world deceive you, nor listen to the lies they would tell you about your thoughts and dreams. Watch out for the evil influence of this world’s enchanters, astrologers, and diviners. Allow the power of My Holy Spirit to fill your life with My power, which alone is mighty enough to destroy the spirits of Jezebel out of your life. 1 SAMUEL 28:9; JEREMIAH 29:8; DANIEL 5:11 Prayer Declaration Father, I loose tribulation against the kingdom of Jezebel. I rebuke and tear down her strongholds, and in the name of Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit I destroy her witchcraft. No longer will she be allowed to cast spells or influence me or my family to practice idolatry. Greater is the power of Your Holy Spirit within me than the evil power of Jezebel upon me.
John Eckhardt (Daily Declarations for Spiritual Warfare: Biblical Principles to Defeat the Devil)
For this equality belongs to the post-Renaissance world of ideology-of political magic and the alchemical science” of politics. Envy is the basis of its broad appeal. And rampant envy, the besetting virus of modern society, is the most predictable result of insistence upon its realization. Furthermore, hue and cry over equality of opportunity and equal rights leads, a fortiori, to a final demand for equality of condition. Under its pressure self respect gives way in the large majority of men who have not reached the level of their expectation, who have no support from an inclusive identity, and who hunger for “revenge” on those who occupy a higher station and will (they expect) continue to enjoy that advantage. The end result is visible in the spiritual proletarians of the “lonely crowd.” Bertrand de Jouvenel has described the process which produces such non-persons in his memorable study, On Power. They are the natural pawns of an impersonal and omnicompetent Leviathan. And to insure their docility such a state is certain to recruit a large “new class” of men, persons superior in “ability” and authority, both to their ostensible “masters” among the people and to such anachronisms as stand in their progressive way. Such is the evidence of the recent past and particularly of American history. Arrant individualism, fracturing and then destroying the hope of amity and confederation, the communal bond and the ancient vision of the good society as an extrapolation from family, is one villain in this tale. Another is rationalized cowardice, shame, and ingratitude hidden behind the disguise of self-sufficiency or the mask of injured merit. Interdependence, which secures dignity and makes of equality a mere irrelevance, is the principal victim.
M.E. Bradford
Witchcraft is part of a living web of species and relationships, a world which we have forgotten to observe, understand or inhabit. Many people reading this paragraph will not know even the current phase of the moon, and if asked for it will not instinctively look up to the current quarter of the sky, but down to their computers. Neither will they be able to name the plants, birds or animals within a metre or mile radius of their door. Witchcraft asks that we do these first things, this is presence. Animism is not embedded in the natural world, it is the natural world. Our witchcraft is that spirit of place, which is made from a convergence of elements and inhabitants. Here I include animals, both living and dead, human and inhuman. Our helpers are mammals, reptiles, fish, birds and insects. Some can be counted allies, others are more ambivalent. Predator and prey are interdependent. These all have the same origin and ancestry, they from from plants, from copper green life. Bones become soil. The plants have been nourished on the minerals drawn up from the bowels of the earth. These are the living tools of the witch's craft. The cycle of the elements and seasons is read in this way. Flux, life and death are part of this, as are extinctions, catastrophe, fire and flood. We avail ourselves of these, and ultimately a balance is sought. Our ritual space is written in starlight, watched over by sun and moon. So this leaves us with a simple question. How can there be any Witchcraft if this is all destroyed? It is not a rhetorical question. Our land, our trees, animals and elements hold spirit. Will we let our familiars, literally our family be destroyed? If we hold any real belief and experience of spirit, then it does not ask, it demands us to fight for it.
Peter Grey (Apocalyptic Witchcraft)
Girls aside, the other thing I found in the last few years of being at school, was a quiet, but strong Christian faith – and this touched me profoundly, setting up a relationship or faith that has followed me ever since. I am so grateful for this. It has provided me with a real anchor to my life and has been the secret strength to so many great adventures since. But it came to me very simply one day at school, aged only sixteen. As a young kid, I had always found that a faith in God was so natural. It was a simple comfort to me: unquestioning and personal. But once I went to school and was forced to sit through somewhere in the region of nine hundred dry, Latin-liturgical, chapel services, listening to stereotypical churchy people droning on, I just thought that I had got the whole faith deal wrong. Maybe God wasn’t intimate and personal but was much more like chapel was … tedious, judgemental, boring and irrelevant. The irony was that if chapel was all of those things, a real faith is the opposite. But somehow, and without much thought, I had thrown the beautiful out with the boring. If church stinks, then faith must do, too. The precious, natural, instinctive faith I had known when I was younger was tossed out with this newly found delusion that because I was growing up, it was time to ‘believe’ like a grown-up. I mean, what does a child know about faith? It took a low point at school, when my godfather, Stephen, died, to shake me into searching a bit harder to re-find this faith I had once known. Life is like that. Sometimes it takes a jolt to make us sit and remember who and what we are really about. Stephen had been my father’s best friend in the world. And he was like a second father to me. He came on all our family holidays, and spent almost every weekend down with us in the Isle of Wight in the summer, sailing with Dad and me. He died very suddenly and without warning, of a heart attack in Johannesburg. I was devastated. I remember sitting up a tree one night at school on my own, and praying the simplest, most heartfelt prayer of my life. ‘Please, God, comfort me.’ Blow me down … He did. My journey ever since has been trying to make sure I don’t let life or vicars or church over-complicate that simple faith I had found. And the more of the Christian faith I discover, the more I realize that, at heart, it is simple. (What a relief it has been in later life to find that there are some great church communities out there, with honest, loving friendships that help me with all of this stuff.) To me, my Christian faith is all about being held, comforted, forgiven, strengthened and loved – yet somehow that message gets lost on most of us, and we tend only to remember the religious nutters or the God of endless school assemblies. This is no one’s fault, it is just life. Our job is to stay open and gentle, so we can hear the knocking on the door of our heart when it comes. The irony is that I never meet anyone who doesn’t want to be loved or held or forgiven. Yet I meet a lot of folk who hate religion. And I so sympathize. But so did Jesus. In fact, He didn’t just sympathize, He went much further. It seems more like this Jesus came to destroy religion and to bring life. This really is the heart of what I found as a young teenager: Christ comes to make us free, to bring us life in all its fullness. He is there to forgive us where we have messed up (and who hasn’t), and to be the backbone in our being. Faith in Christ has been the great empowering presence in my life, helping me walk strong when so often I feel so weak. It is no wonder I felt I had stumbled on something remarkable that night up that tree. I had found a calling for my life.
Bear Grylls (Mud, Sweat and Tears)
This, to be sure, is not the entire truth. For there were individuals in Germany who from the very beginning of the regime and without ever wavering were opposed to Hitler; no one knows how many there were of them—perhaps a hundred thousand, perhaps many more, perhaps many fewer—for their voices were never heard. They could be found everywhere, in all strata of society, among the simple people as well as among the educated, in all parties, perhaps even in the ranks of the N.S.D.A.P. Very few of them were known publicly, as were the aforementioned Reck-Malleczewen or the philosopher Karl Jaspers. Some of them were truly and deeply pious, like an artisan of whom I know, who preferred having his independent existence destroyed and becoming a simple worker in a factory to taking upon himself the “little formality” of entering the Nazi Party. A few still took an oath seriously and preferred, for example, to renounce an academic career rather than swear by Hitler’s name. A more numerous group were the workers, especially in Berlin, and Socialist intellectuals who tried to aid the Jews they knew. There were finally, the two peasant boys whose story is related in Günther Weisenborn’s Der lautlose Aufstand (1953), who were drafted into the S.S. at the end of the war and refused to sign; they were sentenced to death, and on the day of their execution they wrote in their last letter to their families: “We two would rather die than burden our conscience with such terrible things. We know what the S.S. must carry out.” The position of these people, who, practically speaking, did nothing, was altogether different from that of the conspirators. Their ability to tell right from wrong had remained intact, and they never suffered a “crisis of conscience.” There may also have been such persons among the members of the resistance, but they were hardly more numerous in the ranks of the conspirators than among the people at large. They were neither heroes nor saints, and they remained completely silent. Only on one occasion, in a single desperate gesture, did this wholly isolated and mute element manifest itself publicly: this was when the Scholls, two students at Munich University, brother and sister, under the influence of their teacher Kurt Huber distributed the famous leaflets in which Hitler was finally called what he was—a “mass murderer.
Hannah Arendt (Eichmann in Jerusalem - A Report on the Banality of Evil)
Tanis answered. “You’ll slow us up if you don’t.” “The men in my tribe can travel for many days without sleep,” Riverwind said. His eyes were dull and glazed, and he seemed to stare at nothing. Tanis started to argue, then sighed and kept quiet. He knew that he could never truly understand the agony the Plainsman was suffering. To have friends and family—an entire life—utterly destroyed, must be so devastating that the mind shrank from even imagining it. Tanis left him and walked over to where Flint was sitting carving at a piece of wood. “You might as well get some sleep,” Tanis told the dwarf. “I’ll watch for a while.” Flint nodded. “I heard you yelling over there.” He sheathed his dagger and thrust the piece of wood into a pouch. “Defending Que-shu?” Tanis frowned at the memory. Shivering in the chill night, he wrapped his cloak around him, drew up his hood. “Any idea where we are?” he asked Flint. “The Plainsman says we’re on a road known as Sageway East,” the dwarf answered. He stretched out on the cold ground, dragging a blanket up around his shoulders.
Margaret Weis (Dragons of Autumn Twilight (Dragonlance: Chronicles, #1))
It was now my responsibility to build my own culture within the U.S. Attorney’s office, one that would get the best out of our team and drawing, in different ways, on the lessons of Giuliani and Fahey. I tried to attend to this task from the very first day. I hired about fifty new prosecutors during my time as U.S. Attorney and sat with each of them as they took the oath of office. I invited them to bring their families. I told them that something remarkable was going to happen when they stood up and said they represented the United States of America—total strangers were going to believe what they said next. I explained to them that, although I didn’t want to burst their bubbles, this would not happen because of them. It would happen because of those who had gone before them and, through hundreds of promises made and kept, and hundreds of truths told and errors instantly corrected, built something for them. I called it a reservoir. I told them it was a reservoir of trust and credibility built for you and filled for you by people you never knew, by those who are long gone. A reservoir that makes possible so much of the good that is done by the institution you serve. A remarkable gift. I would explain to these bright young lawyers that, like all great gifts, this one comes with a responsibility, a solemn obligation to guard and protect that reservoir and pass it on to those who follow as full as you received it, or maybe even fuller. I would explain that the problem with reservoirs is that they take a very long time to fill but they can be drained by one hole in the dam. The actions of one person can destroy what it took hundreds of people years to build.
James Comey (A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership)
Just as summer-killed meat draws flies, so the court draws spurious sages, philosophists, and acosmists who remain there as long as their purses and their wits will maintain them, in the hope (at first) of an appointment from the Autarch and (later) of obtaining a tutorial position in some exalted family. At sixteen or so, Thecla was attracted, as I think young women often are, to their lectures on theogony, thodicy, and the like, and I recall one particularly in which a phoebad put forward as an ultimate truth the ancient sophistry of the existence of three Adonai, that of the city (or of the people), that of the poets, and that of the philosophers. Her reasoning was that since the beginning of human consciousness (if such a beginning ever was) there have been vast numbers of persons in the three categories who have endeavored to pierce the secret of the divine. If it does not exist, they should have discovered that long before; if it does, it is not possible that Truth itself should mislead them. Yet the beliefs of the populace, the insights of the rhapsodists, and the theories of the metaphysicians have so far diverged that few of them can so much as comprehend what the others say, and someone who knew nothing of any of their ideas might well believe there was no connection at all between them. May it not be, she asked (and even now I am not certain I can answer), that instead of traveling, as has always been supposed, down three roads to the same destination, they are actually traveling toward three quite different ones? After all, when in common life we behold three roads issuing from the same crossing, we do not assume they all proceed toward the same goal. I found (and find) this suggestion as rational as it is repellent, and it represents for me all that monomaniacal fabric of argument, so tightly woven that not even the tiniest objection or spark of light can escape its net, in which human minds become enmeshed whenever the subject is one in which no appeal to fact is possible. As a fact the Claw was thus an incommensurable. No quantity of money, no piling up of archipelagoes or empires could approach it in value any more than the indefinite multiplication of horizontal distance could be made to equal vertical distance. If it was, as I believed, a thing from outside the universe, then its light, which I had seen shine faintly so often, and a few times brightly, was in some sense the only light we had. If it were destroyed, we were left fumbling in the dark.
Gene Wolfe (The Sword of the Lictor (The Book of the New Sun, #3))
We have not thoroughly assessed the bodies snatched from dirt and sand to be chained in a cell. We have not reckoned with the horrendous, violent mass kidnapping that we call the Middle Passage. We have not been honest about all of America's complicity - about the wealth the South earned on the backs of the enslaved, or the wealth the North gained through the production of enslaved hands. We have not fully understood the status symbol that owning bodies offered. We have not confronted the humanity, the emotions, the heartbeats of the multiple generations who were born into slavery and died in it, who never tasted freedom on America's land. The same goes for the Civil War. We have refused to honestly confront the fact that so many were willing to die in order to hold the freedom of others in their hands. We have refused to acknowledge slavery's role at all, preferring to boil things down to the far more palatable "state's rights." We have not confessed that the end of slavery was so bitterly resented, the rise of Jim Crow became inevitable - and with it, a belief in Black inferiority that lives on in hearts and minds today. We have painted the hundred-year history of Jim Crow as little more than mean signage and the inconvenience that white people and Black people could not drink from the same fountain. But those signs weren't just "mean". They were perpetual reminders of the swift humiliation and brutal violence that could be suffered at any moment in the presence of whiteness. Jim Crow meant paying taxes for services one could not fully enjoy; working for meager wages; and owning nothing that couldn't be snatched away. For many black families, it meant never building wealth and never having legal recourse for injustice. The mob violence, the burned-down homes, the bombed churches and businesses, the Black bodies that were lynched every couple of days - Jim Crow was walking through life measuring every step. Even our celebrations of the Civil Rights Movement are sanitized, its victories accentuated while the battles are whitewashed. We have not come to grips with the spitting and shouting, the pulling and tugging, the clubs, dogs, bombs, and guns, the passion and vitriol with which the rights of Black Americans were fought against. We have not acknowledged the bloodshed that often preceded victory. We would rather focus on the beautiful words of Martin Luther King Jr. than on the terror he and protesters endured at marches, boycotts, and from behind jail doors. We don't want to acknowledge that for decades, whiteness fought against every civil right Black Americans sought - from sitting at lunch counters and in integrated classrooms to the right to vote and have a say in how our country was run. We like to pretend that all those white faces who carried protest signs and batons, who turned on their sprinklers and their fire hoses, who wrote against the demonstrations and preached against the changes, just disappeared. We like to pretend that they were won over, transformed, the moment King proclaimed, "I have a dream." We don't want to acknowledge that just as Black people who experienced Jim Crow are still alive, so are the white people who vehemently protected it - who drew red lines around Black neighborhoods and divested them of support given to average white citizens. We ignore that white people still avoid Black neighborhoods, still don't want their kids going to predominantly Black schools, still don't want to destroy segregation. The moment Black Americans achieved freedom from enslavement, America could have put to death the idea of Black inferiority. But whiteness was not prepared to sober up from the drunkenness of power over another people group. Whiteness was not ready to give up the ability to control, humiliate, or do violence to any Black body in the vicinity - all without consequence.
Austin Channing Brown (I'm Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness)
Marjory Gengler (white American) to Mark Mathabane (black South African) in the late 1970s-- Marjory: Why don't blacks fight to change the system [apartheid] that so dehumanizes them? Mark's Response, from his memoirs: I told her [Marjory] about the sophistication of apartheid machinery, the battery of Draconian laws used to buttress it, the abject poverty in which a majority of blacks were sunk, leaving them with little energy and will to agitate for their rights. I told her about the indoctrination that took place in black schools under the guise of Bantu Education, the self-hatred that resulted from being constantly told that you are less than human and being treated that way. I told her of the anger and hatred pent-up inside millions of blacks, destroying their minds. I would have gone on to tell Marjory about the suffering of wives without husbands and children without fathers in impoverished tribal reserves, about the high infant mortality rate among blacks in a country that exported food, and which in 1987 gave the world its first heart transplant. I would have told them about the ragged black boys and girls of seven, eight and nine years who constantly left their homes because of hunger and a disintegrating family life and were making it on their own; by begging along the thoroughfares of Johannesburg; by sleeping in scrapped cars, gutters and in abandoned buildings; by bathing in the diseased Jukskei River; and by eating out of trash cans, sucking festering sores and stealing rotting produce from the Indian traders on First Avenue. I would have told her about how these orphans of the streets, some of them my friends--their physical, intellectual and emotional growth dwarfed and stunted--had grown up to become prostitutes, unwed mothers and tsotsis, littering the ghetto streets with illegitimate children and corpses. I would have told her all this, but I didn't; I feared she would not believe me; I feared upsetting her.
Mark Mathabane
Nights with bright pivots, departure, matter, uniquely voice, uniquely naked each day. Upon your breasts of still current, upon your legs ofharshness and water, upon the permanence and pride of your naked hair, I want to lie, my love, the tears now cast into the raucous basket where they gather, I want to lie, my love, alone with a syllable of destroyed silver, alone with a tip of your snowy breast.   It is not now possible, at times, to win except by falling, it is not now possible, between two people, to tremble, to touch the river’s flower: man fibers come like needles, transactions, fragments, families of repulsive coral, tempests and hard passages through carpets of winter.   Between lips and lips there are cities of great ash and moist crest, drops of when and how, indefinite traffic: between lips and lips, as if along a coast of sand and glass, the wind passes.   That is why you are endless, gather me up as if you were all solemnity, all nocturnal like a zone, until you merge with the lines of time.   Advance in sweetness, come to my side until the digital leaves of the violins have become silent, until the moss takes root in the thunder, until from the throbbing of hand and hand the roots come down.   VALS Yo toco el odio como pecho diurno, yo sin cesar, de ropa en ropa, vengo durmiendo lejos.
Pablo Neruda (Residence on Earth (New Directions Paperbook))
When Libya fought against the Italian occupation, all the Arabs supported the Libyan mujahideen. We Arabs never occupied any country. Well, we occupied Andalusia unjustly, and they drove us out, but since then, we Arabs have not occupied any country. It is our countries that are occupied. Palestine is occupied, Iraq is occupied, and as for the UAE islands... It is not in the best interest of the Arabs for hostility to develop between them and Iran, Turkey, or any of these nations. By no means is it in our interest to turn Iran against us. If there really is a problem, we should decide here to refer this issue to the international court of Justice. This is the proper venue for the resolution of such problems. We should decide to refer the issue of the disputed UAE islands to the International Court of Justice, and we should accept whatever it rules. One time you say this is occupied Arab land, and then you say... This is not clear, and it causes confusion. 80% of the people of the Gulf are Iranians. The ruling families are Arab, but the rest are Iranian. The entire people is Iranian. This is a mess. Iran cannot be avoided. Iran is a Muslim neighbour, and it is not in our interes to become enemies. What is the reason for the invasion and destruction of Iraq, and for killing of one million Iraqis? Let our American friends answer this question: Why Iraq? What is the reason? Is Bin Laden an Iraqi? No he is not. Were those who attacked New York Iraqis? No, they were not. were those who attacked the Pentagon Iraqis? No, they were not. Were there WMDs in Iraq? No, there were not. Even if iraq did have WMDs - Pakistan and India have nuclear bombs, and so do China, Russia, Britain, France and America. Should all these countries be destroyed? Fine, let's destroy all the countries that have WMDs. Along comes a foreign power, occupies an Arab country, and hangs its president, and we all sit on the sidelines, laughing. Why didn't they investigate the hanging of Saddam Hussein? How can a POW be hanged - a president of an Arab country and a member of the Arab League no less! I'm not talking about the policies of Saddam Hussein, or the disagreements we had with him. We all had poitlical disagreements with him and we have such disagreements among ourselves here. We share nothing, beyond this hall. Why won't there be an investigation into the killing of Saddam Hussein? An entire Arab leadership was executed by hanging, yet we sit on the sidelines. Why? Any one of you might be next. Yes. America fought alongside Saddam Hussein against Khomeini. He was their friend. Cheney was a friend of Saddam Hussein. Rumsfeld, the US Defense Secretary at the time Iraq was destroyed, was a close friend of Saddam Hussein. Ultimately, they sold him out and hanged him. You are friends of America - let's say that ''we'' are, not ''you'' - but one of these days, America may hang us. Brother 'Amr Musa has an idea which he is enthusiastic. He mentioned it in his report. He says that the Arabs have the right to use nuclear power for peaceful purposes, and that there should be an Arab nuclear program. The Arabs have this right. They even have the right to have the right to have a nuclear program for other... But Allah prevails... But who are those Arabs whom you say should have united nuclear program? We are the enemies of one another, I'm sad to say. We all hate one another, we deceive one another, we gloat at the misfortune of one another, and we conspire against one another. Our intelligence agencies conspire against one another, instead of defending us against the enemy. We are the enemies of one another, and an Arab's enemy is another Arab's friend.
Muammar Gaddafi
Fifteen years ago, a business manager from the United States came to Plum Village to visit me. His conscience was troubled because he was the head of a firm that designed atomic bombs. I listened as he expressed his concerns. I knew if I advised him to quit his job, another person would only replace him. If he were to quit, he might help himself, but he would not help his company, society, or country. I urged him to remain the director of his firm, to bring mindfulness into his daily work, and to use his position to communicate his concerns and doubts about the production of atomic bombs. In the Sutra on Happiness, the Buddha says it is great fortune to have an occupation that allows us to be happy, to help others, and to generate compassion and understanding in this world. Those in the helping professions have occupations that give them this wonderful opportunity. Yet many social workers, physicians, and therapists work in a way that does not cultivate their compassion, instead doing their job only to earn money. If the bomb designer practises and does his work with mindfulness, his job can still nourish his compassion and in some way allow him to help others. He can still influence his government and fellow citizens by bringing greater awareness to the situation. He can give the whole nation an opportunity to question the necessity of bomb production. Many people who are wealthy, powerful, and important in business, politics, and entertainment are not happy. They are seeking empty things - wealth, fame, power, sex - and in the process they are destroying themselves and those around them. In Plum Village, we have organised retreats for businesspeople. We see that they have many problems and suffer just as others do, sometimes even more. We see that their wealth allows them to live in comfortable conditions, yet they still suffer a great deal. Some businesspeople, even those who have persuaded themselves that their work is very important, feel empty in their occupation. They provide employment to many people in their factories, newspapers, insurance firms, and supermarket chains, yet their financial success is an empty happiness because it is not motivated by understanding or compassion. Caught up in their small world of profit and loss, they are unaware of the suffering and poverty in the world. When we are not int ouch with this larger reality, we will lack the compassion we need to nourish and guide us to happiness. Once you begin to realise your interconnectedness with others, your interbeing, you begin to see how your actions affect you and all other life. You begin to question your way of living, to look with new eyes at the quality of your relationships and the way you work. You begin to see, 'I have to earn a living, yes, but I want to earn a living mindfully. I want to try to select a vocation not harmful to others and to the natural world, one that does not misuse resources.' Entire companies can also adopt this way of thinking. Companies have the right to pursue economic growth, but not at the expense of other life. They should respect the life and integrity of people, animals, plants and minerals. Do not invest your time or money in companies that deprive others of their lives, that operate in a way that exploits people or animals, and destroys nature. Businesspeople who visit Plum Village often find that getting in touch with the suffering of others and cultivating understanding brings them happiness. They practise like Anathapindika, a successful businessman who lived at the time of the Buddha, who with the practise of mindfulness throughout his life did everything he could to help the poor and sick people in his homeland.
Thich Nhat Hanh (Creating True Peace: Ending Violence in Yourself, Your Family, Your Community, and the World)
Why do women find it honorable to dismiss ourselves? Why do we decide that denying our longing is the responsible thing to do? Why do we believe that what will thrill and fulfill us will hurt our people? Why do we mistrust ourselves so completely? Here’s why: Because our culture was built upon and benefits from the control of women. The way power justifies controlling a group is by conditioning the masses to believe that the group cannot be trusted. So the campaign to convince us to mistrust women begins early and comes from everywhere. When we are little girls, our families, teachers, and peers insist that our loud voices, bold opinions, and strong feelings are “too much” and unladylike, so we learn to not trust our personalities. Childhood stories promise us that girls who dare to leave the path or explore get attacked by big bad wolves and pricked by deadly spindles, so we learn to not trust our curiosity. The beauty industry convinces us that our thighs, frizz, skin, fingernails, lips, eyelashes, leg hair, and wrinkles are repulsive and must be covered and manipulated, so we learn to not trust the bodies we live in. Diet culture promises us that controlling our appetite is the key to our worthiness, so we learn to not trust our own hunger. Politicians insist that our judgment about our bodies and futures cannot be trusted, so our own reproductive systems must be controlled by lawmakers we don’t know in places we’ve never been. The legal system proves to us again and again that even our own memories and experiences will not be trusted. If twenty women come forward and say, “He did it,” and he says, “No, I didn’t,” they will believe him while discounting and maligning us every damn time. And religion, sweet Jesus. The lesson of Adam and Eve—the first formative story I was told about God and a woman—was this: When a woman wants more, she defies God, betrays her partner, curses her family, and destroys the world. We weren’t born distrusting and fearing ourselves. That was part of our taming. We were taught to believe that who we are in our natural state is bad and dangerous. They convinced us to be afraid of ourselves. So we do not honor our own bodies, curiosity, hunger, judgment, experience, or ambition. Instead, we lock away our true selves. Women who are best at this disappearing act earn the highest praise: She is so selfless.
Glennon Doyle (Untamed)
In his movie The Seventh Continent, Michael Haneke depicts a normal middle-class family who, for no apparent reason, one day quit their jobs, destroy everything in their apartment, including all the cash they have just withdrawn from the bank, and commit suicide. The story, according to Haneke, was inspired by a true story of an Austrian middle-class family who committed collective suicide. As Haneke points out in a subsequent interview, the cliché questions that people are tempted to ask when confronted with such a situation are: “did they have some trouble in their marriage?”, or “were they dissatisfied with their jobs?”. Haneke’s point, however, is to discredit such questions; if he wanted to create a Hollywood-style drama, he would have offered clues indicating some such problems that we superficially seek when trying to explain people’s choices. But his point was precisely that the most profound thoughts about whether life is meaningful occur once we have swept aside all the clichés about the pleasure or lack thereof of “love, work, and play” (Thagard), or of “being whooshed up in sports events and being absorbed in the coffee-making craft” (Dreyfus and Kelly). Psychologically, or psychotherapeutically, these are very useful ways of “finding meaning in one’s life”, but philosophically, they are rather ways of how to avoid raising the question, how to insulate oneself from the likelihood that the question of meaning will be raised to oneself. In my view, then, the particular answer to the second question (what is the meaning of life?) is not that important, because whatever answer one offers, even the nihilist or absurdist answer, is many times good enough if the purpose is to get rid of the state of puzzlement. More importantly, however, what matters is that the question itself was raised, and the question is posterior to the more fundamental one of whether there is any meaning at all in life. It is also intuitive that we could judge someone’s life as meaningless if that person has never wondered whether her life, and life in general, is meaningful or not. At the same time, our proposal is, in my opinion, neither elitist, nor parochial in any way; I find it empirically quite plausible that the vast majority of people have actually asked this question or some version of it at least once during their lives, regardless of their social class, wealth, religion, ethnicity, gender, cultural background, or historical period.
István Aranyosi (God, Mind and Logical Space: A Revisionary Approach to Divinity)
Because you deserve a duke, damn it!” A troubled expression furrowed his brow. “You deserve a man who can give you the moon. I can’t. I can give you a decent home in a decent part of town with decent people, but you…” His voice grew choked. “You’re the most amazing woman I’ve ever known. It destroys me to think of what you’ll have to give up to be with me.” “I told you before-I don’t care!” she said hotly. “Why can’t you believe me?” He hesitated a long moment. “The truth?” “Always.” “Because I can’t imagine why you’d want me when you have men of rank and riches at your fingertips.” She gave a rueful laugh. “You grossly exaggerate my charms, but I can’t complain. It’s one of many things I adore about you-that you see a better version of me than I ever could.” Remembering the wonderful words he’d said last night when she’d been so self-conscious, she left the bed to walk up to him. “Do you know what I see when I look at you?” His wary gaze locked with hers. “Proper Pinter. Proud Pinter.” “Yes, but that’s just who you show to the world to protect yourself.” She reached up to stroke his cheek, reveling in the ragged breath that escaped him. “When you let down your guard, however, I see Jackson-who ferrets out the truth, no matter how hard. Who risks his own life to protect the weak. Who’d sacrifice anything to prevent me from having to sacrifice everything.” Catching her hand, he halted its path. “You see a saint,” he said hoarsely. “I’m not a saint; I’m a man with needs and desires and a great many rough edges.” “I like your rough edges,” she said with a soft smile. “If I’d really wanted a man of rank and riches, I probably would have married long ago. I always told myself I couldn’t marry because no one wanted me, but the truth was, I didn’t want any of them.” She fingered a lock of hair. “Apparently I was waiting for you, rough edges and all.” His eyes turned hot with wanting. Drawing her hand to his lips, he kissed the palm so tenderly that her heart leapt into her throat. When he lifted his head, he said, “Then marry me, rough edges and all.” She swallowed. “That’s what you say now, when we’re alone and you’re caught up in-“ He covered her mouth with his, kissing her so fervently that she turned into a puddle of mush. Blast him-he always did that, too, when they were alone; it was when they were with others that he reconsidered their being together forever. And he still had said nothing of live. “That’s enough of that,” she warned, drawing back from him. “Until you make a proper proposal, before my family, you’re not sharing my bed.” “Sweeting-“ “Don’t you ‘sweeting’ me, Jackson Pinter.” She edged away from him. “I want Proper Pinter back now.” A mocking smile crossed his lips. “Sorry, love. I threw him out when I saw how he was mucking up my private life.” Love? No, she wouldn’t let that soften her. Not until she was sure he wouldn’t turn cold later. “You told Oliver you’d behave like a gentleman.” “To hell with your brother.” He stalked her with clear intent. Even as she darted behind a chair to avoid him, excitement tore through her. “Aren’t you still worried Gran will cut me off, and you’ll be saddled with a spoiled wife and not enough money to please her?” “To hell with your grandmother, too. For that matter, to hell with the money.” He tossed the chair aside as if it were so much kindling; it clattered across the floor. “It’s you I want.
Sabrina Jeffries (A Lady Never Surrenders (Hellions of Halstead Hall, #5))
From 1992 to 1997, TAT [Treating Abuse Today] under my editorship published several articles by a number of respected professionals who seriously questioned the false memory syndrome (FMS) hypothesis and the methodology, ethics, and assertions of those who were rapidly pushing the concept into the public consciousness. During that time, not one person from the FMS movement contacted me to refute the specific points made in the articles or to present any research that would prove even a single case of this allegedly “epidemic” syndrome. Instead of a reasoned response to the published articles, for nearly three years proponents of the so-called FMS hypothesis–including members, officials, and supporters of the False Memory Syndrome Foundation, Inc. (FMSF)–have waged a campaign of harassment, defamation, and psychological terrorism against me, my clients, staff, family, and other innocent people connected with me. These clearly are intended to (a) intimidate me and anyone associated with me; (b) terrorize and deter access to my psychotherapy clients; (c) encumber my resources; and (d) destroy my reputation publicly, in the business community, among my professional colleagues, and within national and international professional organizations. Before describing this highly orchestrated campaign, let me emphasize that I have never treated any member of this group or their families, and do not have any relationships to any of my counseling clients. Neither have I consulted to their cases nor do I bear any relation to the disclosures of memories of sexual abuse in their families. I had no prior dealings with any of this group before they began showing up at my offices with offensive and defamatory signs early in 1995. Ethics and Behavior, 8(2) pp. 161-187
David L. Calof
American cold war culture represented an age of anxiety. The anxiety was so severe that it sought relief in an insistent, assertive optimism. Much of American popular culture aided this quest for apathetic security. The expanding white middle class sought to escape their worries in the burgeoning consumer culture. Driving on the new highway system in gigantic showboat cars to malls and shopping centers that accepted a new form of payment known as credit cards, Americans could forget about Jim Crow, communism, and the possibility of Armageddon. At night in their suburban homes, television allowed middle class families to enjoy light domestic comedies like The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet, Father Knows Best, and Leave It to Beaver. Somnolently they watched representations of settled family life, stories where lost baseball gloves and dinnertime hijinks represented the only conflicts. In the glow of a new Zenith television, it became easy to believe that the American dream had been fully realized by the sacrifice and hard work of the war generation. American monsters in pop culture came to the aid of this great American sleep. Although a handful of science fiction films made explicit political messages that unsettled an apathetic America, the vast majority of 'creature features' proffered parables of American righteousness and power. These narratives ended, not with world apocalypse, but with a full restoration of a secure, consumer-oriented status quo. Invaders in flying saucers, radioactive mutations, and giant creatures born of the atomic age wreaked havoc but were soon destroyed by brainy teams of civilian scientists in cooperation with the American military. These films encouraged a certain degree of paranoia but also offered quick and easy relief to this anxiety... Such films did not so much teach Americans to 'stop worrying and love the bomb' as to 'keep worrying and love the state.
W. Scott Poole (Monsters in America: Our Historical Obsession with the Hideous and the Haunting)
My family is a classic American-dream story. My great-grandparents fled Russia to avoid being murdered for their religion. Just two generations later, my parents fled New York City weekends for their country house. I never felt guilty about this. I was raised to believe America rewards hard work. But I was also raised to understand that luck plays a role in even the bootstrappiest success story. The cost of living the dream, I was taught, is the responsibility to expand it for others. It’s a more than fair price. Yet the people running the country didn’t see it that way. With George W. Bush in the White House, millionaires and billionaires were showered with tax cuts. Meanwhile, schools went underfunded. Roads and bridges deteriorated. Household incomes languished. Deficits ballooned. And America went to war. President Bush invaded Iraq to destroy weapons of mass destruction, a campaign which hit a snag when it turned out those weapons didn’t exist. But by then it was too late. We had broken a country and owned the resulting mess. Colin Powell called this “the Pottery Barn rule,” which, admittedly, was cute. Still, it’s hard to imagine a visit to Pottery Barn that costs trillions of dollars and thousands of American lives. Our leaders, in other words, had made bad choices. They would therefore be replaced with better ones. That’s how AP Government told me the system worked. In the real world, however, the invasion of Iraq became an excuse for a dark and antidemocratic turn. Those who questioned the war, the torture of prisoners—or even just the tax cuts—found themselves accused of something barely short of treason. No longer was a distinction made between supporting the president’s policies and America’s troops. As an electoral strategy, this was dangerous and cynical. Also, it worked. So no, I didn’t grow up with a high opinion of politicians. But I did grow up in the kind of environment where people constantly told me I could change the world. In 2004, eager to prove them right, I volunteered for John Kerry’s presidential campaign.
David Litt (Thanks, Obama: My Hopey, Changey White House Years)
Ionizing radiation takes three principal forms: alpha particles, beta particles, and gamma rays. Alpha particles are relatively large, heavy, and slow moving and cannot penetrate the skin; even a sheet of paper could block their path. But if they do manage to find their way inside the body by other means—if swallowed or inhaled—alpha particles can cause massive chromosomal damage and death. Radon 222, which gathers as a gas in unventilated basements, releases alpha particles into the lungs, where it causes cancer. Polonium 210, a powerful alpha emitter, is one of the carcinogens in cigarette smoke. It was also the poison slipped into the cup of tea that killed former FSB agent Alexander Litvinenko in London in 2006. Beta particles are smaller and faster moving than alpha particles and can penetrate more deeply into living tissue, causing visible burns on the skin and lasting genetic damage. A piece of paper won’t provide protection from beta particles, but aluminum foil—or separation by sufficient distance—will. Beyond a range of ten feet, beta particles can cause little damage, but they prove dangerous if ingested in any way. Mistaken by the body for essential elements, beta-emitting radioisotopes can become fatally concentrated in specific organs: strontium 90, a member of the same chemical family as calcium, is retained in the bones; ruthenium is absorbed by the intestine; iodine 131 lodges particularly in the thyroid of children, where it can cause cancer. Gamma rays—high-frequency electromagnetic waves traveling at the speed of light—are the most energetic of all. They can traverse large distances, penetrate anything short of thick pieces of concrete or lead, and destroy electronics. Gamma rays pass straight through a human being without slowing down, smashing through cells like a fusillade of microscopic bullets. Severe exposure to all ionizing radiation results in acute radiation syndrome (ARS), in which the fabric of the human body is unpicked, rearranged, and destroyed at the most minute levels. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, hemorrhaging, and hair loss, followed by a collapse of the immune system, exhaustion of bone marrow, disintegration of internal organs, and, finally, death.
Adam Higginbotham (Midnight in Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World's Greatest Nuclear Disaster)
She could envision Shakespeare's sister. But she imagined a violent, an apocalyptic end for Shakespeare's sister, whereas I know that isn't what happened. You see, it isn't necessary. I know that lots of Chinese women, given in marriage to men they abhorred and lives they despised, killed themselves by throwing themselves down the family well. I'm not saying it doesn't happen. I'm only saying that isn't what usually happens. It it were, we wouldn't be having a population problem. And there are so much easier ways to destroy a woman. You don't have to rape or kill her; you don't even have to beat her. You can just marry her. You don't even have to do that. You can just let her work in your office for thirty-five dollars a week. Shakespeare's sister did...follow her brother to London, but she never got there. She was raped the first night out, and bleeding and inwardly wounded, she stumbled for shelter into the next village she found. Realizing before too long that she was pregnant, she sought a way to keep herself and her child safe. She found some guy with the hots for her, realized he was credulous, and screwed him. When she announced her pregnancy to him, a couple months later, he dutifully married her. The child, born a bit early, makes him suspicious: they fight, he beats her, but in the end he submits. Because there is something in the situation that pleases him: he has all the comforts of home including something Mother didn't provide, and if he has to put up with a screaming kid he isn't sure is his, he feels now like one of the boys down at the village pub, none of whom is sure they are the children of the fathers or the fathers of their children. But Shakespeare's sister has learned the lesson all women learn: men are the ultimate enemy. At the same time she knows she cannot get along in the world without one. So she uses her genius, the genius she might have used to make plays and poems with, in speaking, not writing. She handles the man with language: she carps, cajoles, teases, seduces, calculates, and controls this creature to whom God saw fit to give power over her, this hulking idiot whom she despises because he is dense and fears because he can do her harm. So much for the natural relation between the sexes. But you see, he doesn't have to beat her much, he surely doesn't have to kill her: if he did, he'd lose his maidservant. The pounds and pence by themselves are a great weapon. They matter to men, of course, but they matter more to women, although their labor is generally unpaid. Because women, even unmarried ones, are required to do the same kind of labor regardless of their training or inclinations, and they can't get away from it without those glittering pounds and pence. Years spent scraping shit out of diapers with a kitchen knife, finding places where string beans are two cents less a pound, intelligence in figuring the most efficient, least time-consuming way to iron men's white shirts or to wash and wax the kitchen floor or take care of the house and kids and work at the same time and save money, hiding it from the boozer so the kid can go to college -- these not only take energy and courage and mind, but they may constitute the very essence of a life. They may, you say wearily, but who's interested?...Truthfully, I hate these grimy details as much as you do....They are always there in the back ground, like Time's winged chariot. But grimy details are not in the background of the lives of most women; they are the entire surface.
Marilyn French (The Women's Room)
I have talked to many people about this and it seems to be a kind of mystical experience. The preparation is unconscious, the realization happens in a flaming second. It was on Third Avenue. The trains were grinding over my head. The snow was nearly waist-high in the gutters and uncollected garbage was scattered in a dirty mess. The wind was cold, and frozen pieces of paper went scraping along the pavement. I stopped to look in a drug-store window where a latex cooch dancer was undulating by a concealed motor–and something burst in my head, a kind of light and a kind of feeling blended into an emotion which if it had spoken would have said, “My God! I belong here. Isn’t this wonderful?” Everything fell into place. I saw every face I passed. I noticed every doorway and the stairways to apartments. I looked across the street at the windows, lace curtains and potted geraniums through sooty glass. It was beautiful–but most important, I was part of it. I was no longer a stranger. I had become a New Yorker. Now there may be people who move easily into New York without travail, but most I have talked to about it have had some kind of trial by torture before acceptance. And the acceptance is a double thing. It seems to me that the city finally accepts you just as you finally accept the city. A young man in a small town, a frog in a small puddle, if he kicks his feet is able to make waves, get mud in his neighbor’s eyes–make some impression. He is known. His family is known. People watch him with some interest, whether kindly or maliciously. He comes to New York and no matter what he does, no one is impressed. He challenges the city to fight and it licks him without being aware of him. This is a dreadful blow to a small-town ego. He hates the organism that ignores him. He hates the people who look through him. And then one day he falls into place, accepts the city and does not fight it any more. It is too huge to notice him and suddenly the fact that it doesn’t notice him becomes the most delightful thing in the world. His self-consciousness evaporates. If he is dressed superbly well–there are half a million people dressed equally well. If he is in rags–there are a million ragged people. If he is tall, it is a city of tall people. If he is short the streets are full of dwarfs; if ugly, ten perfect horrors pass him in one block; if beautiful, the competition is overwhelming. If he is talented, talent is a dime a dozen. If he tries to make an impression by wearing a toga–there’s a man down the street in a leopard skin. Whatever he does or says or wears or thinks he is not unique. Once accepted this gives him perfect freedom to be himself, but unaccepted it horrifies him. I don’t think New York City is like other cities. It does not have character like Los Angeles or New Orleans. It is all characters–in fact, it is everything. It can destroy a man, but if his eyes are open it cannot bore him. New York is an ugly city, a dirty city. Its climate is a scandal, its politics are used to frighten children, its traffic is madness, its competition is murderous. But there is one thing about it–once you have lived in New York and it has become your home, no place else is good enough. All of everything is concentrated here, population, theatre, art, writing, publishing, importing, business, murder, mugging, luxury, poverty. It is all of everything. It goes all right. It is tireless and its air is charged with energy. I can work longer and harder without weariness in New York than anyplace else….
John Steinbeck