Life And Cycle Quotes

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Is this thing safe?" "Safe as life," Gansey replied.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty: not knowing what comes next.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Left Hand of Darkness (Hainish Cycle, #4))
Light is the left hand of darkness and darkness the right hand of light. Two are one, life and death, lying together like lovers in kemmer, like hands joined together, like the end and the way.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Left Hand of Darkness (Hainish Cycle, #4))
First, let no one rule your mind or body. Take special care that your thoughts remain unfettered... . Give men your ear, but not your heart. Show respect for those in power, but don't follow them blindly. Judge with logic and reason, but comment not. Consider none your superior whatever their rank or station in life. Treat all fairly, or they will seek revenge. Be careful with your money. Hold fast to your beliefs and others will listen.
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
The most unfair thing about life is the way it ends. I mean, life is tough. It takes up a lot of your time. What do you get at the end of it? A Death! What’s that, a bonus? I think the life cycle is all backwards. You should die first, get it out of the way. Then you live in an old age home. You get kicked out when you’re too young, you get a gold watch, you go to work. You work forty years until you’re young enough to enjoy your retirement. You do drugs, alcohol, you party, you get ready for high school. You go to grade school, you become a kid, you play, you have no responsibilities, you become a little baby, you go back into the womb, you spend your last nine months floating …and you finish off as an orgasm.
George Carlin
Life is both pain and pleasure. If this is the price you must pay for the hours you enjoy, is it too much?
Christopher Paolini (Eldest (The Inheritance Cycle, #2))
There's a point, around the age of twenty, when you have to choose whether to be like everybody else the rest of your life, or to make a virtue of your peculiarities.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Dispossessed (Hainish Cycle, #6))
The purpose of life is not to do what we want but what needs to be done.
Christopher Paolini (Brisingr (The Inheritance Cycle, #3))
I had forgotten how much light there is in the world, till you gave it back to me.
Ursula K. Le Guin (A Wizard of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle, #1))
And there are never really endings, happy or otherwise. Things keep going on, they overlap and blur, your story is part of your sister's story is part of many other stories, and there is no telling where any of them may lead.
Erin Morgenstern (The Night Circus)
Avoid roasted cabbage, do not eat earwax, and look on the bright side of life!
Christopher Paolini (Eldest (The Inheritance Cycle, #2))
When Ronan thought of Gansey, he thought of moving into Monmouth Manufacturing, of nights spent in companionable insomnia, of a summer searching for a king, of Gansey asking the Gray Man for his life. Brothers.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.
Charles Darwin (The Origin of Species)
Life is in Fate's hands now. You made your choice to stay... it's too late to change that, so stop agonizing over it.... You're making my scales itch. Saphira, from "Eragon
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
For a word to be spoken, there must be silence. Before, and after.
Ursula K. Le Guin (A Wizard of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle, #1))
Flustered, she replied, "You're not my - my - grandmother, or something." "You'd talk about this with your grandmother? I can't possibly imagine discussing my dating life with mine. She's a lovely woman, I suppose. If you like them bald and racist.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song, a medley of extemporanea, And love is a thing that can never go wrong, and I am Marie of Romania.
Dorothy Parker (Enough Rope)
It's impossible to go through life unscathed. Nor should you want to. By the hurts we accumulate, we measure both our follies and our accomplishments.
Christopher Paolini (Inheritance (The Inheritance Cycle, #4))
If you are an approval addict, your behaviour is as easy to control as that of any other junkie. All a manipulator need do is a simple two-step process: Give you what you crave, and then threaten to take it away. Every drug dealer in the world plays this game.
Harriet B. Braiker (Who's Pulling Your Strings? How to Break the Cycle of Manipulation and Regain Control of Your Life)
Life is pain...anyone who tells you otherwise is selling something
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. You need distance, interval. The way to see how beautiful the earth is, is to see it as the moon. The way to see how beautiful life is, is from the vantage point of death.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Dispossessed (Hainish Cycle, #6))
Each time Olan Chapman comes to life, his anti-quarks remain on the far side of the Time Wall. After his life cycle ends, his quarks collapse back to these roots, and – presto – America's most wanted man is ready for his next adventure.
Kyle Keyes (Worm Holes (Quantum Roots, #2))
Whatever you do, protect those you care for. Without them, life is more miserable than you can imagine.
Christopher Paolini (Brisingr (The Inheritance Cycle, #3))
How does one hate a country, or love one? Tibe talks about it; I lack the trick of it. I know people, I know towns, farms, hills and rivers and rocks, I know how the sun at sunset in autumn falls on the side of a certain plowland in the hills; but what is the sense of giving a boundary to all that, of giving it a name and ceasing to love where the name ceases to apply? What is love of one's country; is it hate of one's uncountry? Then it's not a good thing. Is it simply self-love? That's a good thing, but one mustn't make a virtue of it, or a profession... Insofar as I love life, I love the hills of the Domain of Estre, but that sort of love does not have a boundary-line of hate. And beyond that, I am ignorant, I hope.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Left Hand of Darkness (Hainish Cycle, #4))
What is the worth of anything we do? The worth is in the act. Your worth halts when you surrender the will to change and experience life.
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
I never knew anybody . . . who found life simple. I think a life or a time looks simple when you leave out the details.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Birthday of the World and Other Stories (Hainish Cycle, #9))
Grief is an element. It has its own cycle like the carbon cycle, the nitrogen. It never diminishes not ever. It passes in and out of everything.
Peter Heller (The Dog Stars)
What an impossible and miraculous and hideous thing this was. An ugly plan hatched by an ugly boy now dreamt into ugly life. From dream to reality. How appropiate it was that Ronan, left to his own devices, manifested beautiful cars and beautiful birds and tenderhearted brothers, while Adam, when given the power, manifested a filthy string of perverse murders.
Maggie Stiefvater (Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle, #3))
Only in silence the word, only in dark the light, only in dying life: bright the hawk's flight on the empty sky.
Ursula K. Le Guin (A Wizard of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle, #1))
Change is freedom, change is life. It's always easier not to think for oneself. Find a nice safe hierarchy and settle in. Don't make changes, don't risk disapproval, don't upset your syndics. It's always easiest to let yourself be governed. There's a point, around age twenty, when you have to choose whether to be like everybody else the rest of your life, or to make a virtue of your peculiarities. Those who build walls are their own prisoners. I'm going to go fulfil my proper function in the social organism. I'm going to go unbuild walls.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Dispossessed (Hainish Cycle, #6))
Books are my friends, my companions. They make me laugh and cry and find meaning in life." The most importnant truth in my life,if you ask me,and he got it all right
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
I think," Tehanu said in her soft, strange voice, "that when I die, I can breathe back the breath that made me live. I can give back to the world all that I didn't do. All that I might have been and couldn't be. All the choices I didn't make. All the things I lost and spent and wasted. I can give them back to the world. To the lives that haven't been lived yet. That will be my gift back to the world that gave me the life I did live, the love I loved, the breath I breathed.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Other Wind (Earthsea Cycle, #6))
It had been a long time ago, but also, it was no time at all. Sometimes, Gansey felt like his life was made up of a dozen hours that he could never forget.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
When I was young, I had to choose between the life of being and the life of doing. And I leapt at the latter like a trout to a fly. But each deed you do, each act, binds you to itself and to its consequences, and makes you act again and yet again. Then very seldom do you come upon a space, a time like this, between act and act, when you may stop and simply be. Or wonder who, after all, you are.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Farthest Shore (Earthsea Cycle, #3))
Today, Blue thought, is the day I stop listening to the future and start living it instead.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
And I speak of spiritual suffering! Of people seeing their talent, their work, their lives wasted. Of good minds submitting to stupid ones. Of strength and courage strangled by envy, greed for power, fear of change. Change is freedom, change is life
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Dispossessed (Hainish Cycle, #6))
CIRCLES OF LIFE Everything Turns, Rotates, Spins, Circles, Loops, Pulsates, Resonates, And Repeats. Circles Of life, Born from Pulses Of light, Vibrate To Breathe, While Spiraling Outwards For Infinity Through The lens Of time, And into A sea Of stars And Lucid Dreams. Poetry by Suzy Kassem
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
To offer no resistance to life is to be in a state of grace, ease, and lightness. This state is then no longer dependent upon things being in a certain way, good or bad. It seems almost paradoxical, yet when your inner dependency on form is gone, the general conditions of your life, the outer forms, tend to improve greatly. Things, people, or conditions that you thought you needed for your happiness now come to you with no struggle or effort on your part, and you are free to enjoy and appreciate them - while they last. All those things, of course, will still pass away, cycles will come and go, but with dependency gone there is no fear of loss anymore. Life flows with ease.
Eckhart Tolle
The endless cycle of idea and action, Endless invention, endless experiment, Brings knowledge of motion, but not of stillness; Knowledge of speech, but not of silence; Knowledge of words, and ignorance of the Word. All our knowledge brings us nearer to our ignorance, All our ignorance brings us nearer to death, But nearness to death no nearer to God. Where is the Life we have lost in living? Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information? The cycles of Heaven in twenty centuries Bring us farther from God and nearer to the Dust.
T.S. Eliot
She'll die.' 'Aye. That's a consequence of being alive.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Farthest Shore (Earthsea Cycle, #3))
He wondered if he was going to go through each year of his life thinking about how stupid he'd been the year before.
Maggie Stiefvater (Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle, #3))
If you are on social media, and you are not learning, not laughing, not being inspired or not networking, then you are using it wrong.
Germany Kent
Stars also symbolize the cycle of life, solitude and gravity. They glow in the dark energy that’s the majority of space, and remind us that even in the pitch black, there’s always something that can shine.
L.J. Shen (Ruckus (Sinners of Saint, #2))
If Glendower had not saved Gansey's life, he did not know who to thank, or who to be, or how to live.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
A rock is a good thing, too, you know. If the Isles of Earthsea were all made of diamond, we'd lead a hard life here. Enjoy the illusions, lad, and let the rocks be rocks.
Ursula K. Le Guin (A Wizard of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle, #1))
The trickster, the riddler, the keeper of balance, he of the many faces who finds life in death and who fears no evil; he who walks through doors.
Christopher Paolini (Brisingr (The Inheritance Cycle, #3))
Who is it who decides that one man should live and another should die? My life wasn't worth any more than his, but he's the one who's buried, while I get to enjoy at least a few more hours above the ground. Is it chance, random and cruel, or is there some purpose or pattern to all this, even if it lies beyond our ken?
Christopher Paolini (Inheritance (The Inheritance Cycle, #4))
Gansey thought of how strange it was to know these two young men so well and yet to not know them at all. Both so much more difficult and so much better than when he'd first met them. Was that what life did to them all? Chiselled them into harder, truer versions of themselves?
Maggie Stiefvater (Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle, #3))
The next generation will always surpass the previous one. It's one of the never-ending cycles in life.
Masashi Kishimoto
Seasons flow in a cycle. Life too, passes through difficult winters. But after any winter, spring will follow.
Toshikazu Kawaguchi (Before the Coffee Gets Cold: Tales from the Café (Before the Coffee Gets Cold, #2))
The Earth is beautiful, and bright, and kindly, but that is not all. The Earth is also terrible, and dark, and cruel. The rabbit shrieks dying in the green meadows. The mountains clench their great hands full of hidden fire. There are sharks in the sea, and there is cruelty in men’s eyes.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Tombs of Atuan (Earthsea Cycle, #2))
Who knows a man's name, holds that man's life in his keeping. Thus to Ged, who had lost faith in himself, Vetch had given him that gift that only a friend can give, the proof of unshaken, unshakeable trust.
Ursula K. Le Guin (A Wizard of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle, #1))
Death and life are the same thing-like the two sides of my hand, the palm and the back. And still the palm and the back are not the same...They can be neither separated, nor mixed.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Farthest Shore (Earthsea Cycle, #3))
Ged had neither lost nor won but, naming the shadow of his death with his own name, had made himself whole: a man: who, knowing his whole true self, cannot be used or possessed by any power other than himself, and whose life therefore is lived for life's sake and never in the service of ruin, or pain, or hatred, or the dark.
Ursula K. Le Guin (A Wizard of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle, #1))
There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.
Charles Darwin (The Origin of Species)
When she opened her eyes, she was both in her body and watching it, nowhere near the cavity of the tree. The Blue that was before her stood inches from a boy in an Aglionby sweater. There was a slight stoop to his posture, and his shoulders were spattered darkly with rain. It was his fingers that Blue felt on her face. He touched her cheek with the backs of his fingers. Tears coursed down the other Blue's face. Though some strange magic, Blue could feel them on her face as well. She could feel, too, sick, rising misery she'd felt in the churchyard, the grief that felt bigger than her. The other Blue's tears seemed endless. One drop slid after another, each following an identical path down her cheeks. The boy in the Aglionby sweater leaned his forehead against Blue's. She felt the pressure of his skin against hers, and suddenly she could smell mint. It'll be okay. Gansey told the other Blue. She could tell that he was afraid. It'll be okay. Impossibly, Blue realized that this other Blue was crying because she loved Gansey. And that the reason Gansey touched her like that, his fingers so careful with her, was because he knew that her kiss could kill him. She could feel how badly the other Blue wanted to kiss him, even as she dreaded it. Though she couldn't understand why, her real, present day memories in the tree cavity were clouded with other false memories of their lips nearly touching, a life this other Blue had already lived. Okay, I'm ready- Gansey's voice caught, just a little. Blue, kiss me.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
The poor are sad they're poor, Adam had once mused, and turns out the rich are sad they're rich.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
It was this: this moment and no other moment, and for the first time that Gansey could remember, he knew what it would feel like to be present in his own life.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
Ever bike? Now that's something that makes life worth living!...Oh, to just grip your handlebars and lay down to it, and go ripping and tearing through streets and road, over railroad tracks and bridges, threading crowds, avoiding collisions, at twenty miles or more an hour, and wondering all the time when you're going to smash up. Well, now, that's something! And then go home again after three hours of it...and then to think that tomorrow I can do it all over again!
Jack London
The only purpose of our lives consists in waking each other up and being there for each other.
Johanna Paungger (Moon Time: The Art of Harmony with Nature and Lunar Cycles)
Life rises out of death, death rises out of life; in being opposite they yearn to each other, they give birth to each other and are forever reborn. And with them, all is reborn, the flower of the apple tree, the light of the stars. In life is death. In death is rebirth. What then is life without death? Life unchanging, everlasting, eternal?-What is it but death-death without rebirth?
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Farthest Shore (Earthsea Cycle, #3))
Is it safe?” Gansey asked. “Safe as life,” Adam replied.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
Life isn't just sex and drugs and cars.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
Unfortunately, most people never observe the natural cycle of birth and death. They do not realize that for one living thing to survive, another living thing must die.
Temple Grandin (Thinking in Pictures: My Life with Autism)
And the game begins anew.
Neil Gaiman (Norse Mythology)
What a grin he had, what ferocious eyes, what a creature he was. He had dreamt himself an entire life and death. Ronan said, "I want to go back." "Then take it," said his father. "You know how now." And Ronan did. Because Niall Lynch was a forest fire, a rising sea, a car crash, a closing curtain, a blistering symphony, a catalyst with planets inside him. And he had given all of that to his middle son.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
There is much you can learn from books and scrolls. These books are my friends, my companions. They make me laugh and cry and find meaning in life.
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
The usual hero adventure begins with someone from whom something has been taken, or who feels there is something lacking in the normal experience available or permitted to the members of society. The person then takes off on a series of adventures beyond the ordinary, either to recover what has been lost or to discover some life-giving elixir. It's usually a cycle, a coming and a returning.
Joseph Campbell (The Hero With a Thousand Faces)
You will die. You will not live forever. Nor will any man nor any thing. Nothing is immortal. But only to us is it given to know that we must die. And that is a great gift: the gift of selfhood. For we have only what we know we must lose, what we are willing to lose... That selfhood which is our torment, and our treasure, and our humanity, does not endure. It changes; it is gone, a wave on the sea. Would you have the sea grow still and the tides cease, to save one wave, to save yourself?
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Farthest Shore (Earthsea Cycle, #3))
Sometimes, Gansey felt like his life was made up of a dozen hours that he could never forget.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
She’d been so afraid of the absolute worst that she’d forgotten how she missed the absolute best.
Maggie Stiefvater (Opal (The Raven Cycle, #4.5))
He lost his Self a thousand times and for days on end he dwelt in non-being. But although the paths took him away from Self, in the end they always led back to it. Although Siddhartha fled from the Self a thousand times, dwelt in nothing, dwelt in animal and stone, the return was inevitable; the hour was inevitable when he would again find himself in sunshine or in moonlight, in shadow or in rain, and was again Self and Siddhartha, again felt the torment of the onerous life cycle.
Hermann Hesse (Siddhartha: An Indian Tale)
There are times in life when we feel so very alive that when they pass, we feel … diminished. When that happens, we’ll do almost anything to feel so alive again.
Peter V. Brett (The Warded Man (The Demon Cycle, #1))
The purpose of life is not to do what we want but what needs to be done. This is what fate demands of us.
Christopher Paolini (Brisingr (The Inheritance Cycle, #3))
Sleep deprivation made his life an imaginary thing, his days a ribbon floating aimlessly in water." - Whelk
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
You'll enjoy it. There is much you can learn from books and scrolls," said Jeod. He gestured at the walls. "These books are my friends, my companions. They make me laugh and cry and find meaning in life." "It sounds intriguing," admitted Eragon. "Always the scholar, aren't you?" asked Brom. Jeod shrugged. "Not anymore. I'm afraid I've degenerated into a bibliophile.
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
The worth is in the act. Your worth halts when you surrender your will to change and experience life. But options are before you; choose one and dedicate yourself to it. The deeds will give you a new hope and purpose.
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
Any day above ground is a good day. Before you complain about anything, be thankful for your life and the things that are still going well.
Germany Kent
Does a leaf, when it falls from the tree in winter, feel defeated by the cold? The tree says to the leaf: "That’s the cycle of life. You may think you’re going to die, but you live on in me. It’s thanks to you that I’m alive, because I can breathe. It’s also thanks to you that I have felt loved, because I was able to give shade to the weary traveller. Your sap is in my sap; we are one thing.
Paulo Coelho (Manuscript Found in Accra)
Close cycles. Not because of pride or arrogance, but because that no longer fits your life
Paulo Coelho
Don't you try and go through life worrying about if somebody like you or not. You best be making sure they doing right by you.
August Wilson (Fences (The Century Cycle, #6))
We have nothing but our freedom. We have nothing to give you but your own freedom. We have no law but the single principle of mutual aid between individuals. We have no government but the single principle of free association. We have no states, no nations, no presidents, no premiers, no chiefs, no generals, no bosses, no bankers, no landlords, no wages, no charity, no police, no soldiers, no wars. Nor do we have much else. We are sharers, not owners. We are not prosperous. None of us is rich. None of us is powerful. If it is Anarres you want, if it is the future you seek, then I tell you that you must come to it with empty hands. You must come to it alone, and naked, as the child comes into the world, into his future, without any past, without any property, wholly dependent on other people for his life. You cannot take what you have not given, and you must give yourself. You cannot buy the Revolution. You cannot make the Revolution. You can only be the Revolution. It is in your spirit, or it is nowhere.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Dispossessed (Hainish Cycle, #6))
I live my life until I start the cycle of my dreams,then I leave and search for you until I die.When I come back,I live to remember,I live to find you
Molly Bryant (Wandering Souls)
There seems to be a requirement for just so many people to be in the poor class, just as the need for a middle class exists. One class actually supports the other. The only way to get out of that cycle is to fight your way out. Never pass up an opportunity, and stick your foot into every open door, even if it’s just to see what’s inside. If there’s a possibility of seeing something you never have seen to experiencing something new. Do it. 
Gaylan D. Wright (Slave to the Dream: Everyone’s Dream)
You know, bicycling isn't just a matter of balance," I said. "it's a matter of faith. You can keep upright only by moving forward. You have to have your eyes on the goal, not the ground. I'm going to call that the Bicyclist's Philosophy of Life.
Susan Vreeland (Clara and Mr. Tiffany)
We say that flowers return every spring, but that is a lie. It is true that the world is renewed. It is also true that that renewal comes at a price, for even if the flower grows from an ancient vine, the flowers of spring are themselves new to the world, untried and untested. The flower that wilted last year is gone. Petals once fallen are fallen forever. Flowers do not return in the spring, rather they are replaced. It is in this difference between returned and replaced that the price of renewal is paid. And as it is for spring flowers, so it is for us.
Daniel Abraham (The Price of Spring (Long Price Quartet, #4))
The best teachers have showed me that things have to be done bit by bit. Nothing that means anything happens quickly--we only think it does. The motion of drawing back a bow and sending an arrow straight into a target takes only a split second, but it is a skill many years in the making. So it is with a life, anyone's life. I may list things that might be described as my accomplishments in these few pages, but they are only shadows of the larger truth, fragments separated from the whole cycle of becoming. And if I can tell an old-time story now about a man who is walking about, waudjoset ndatlokugan, a forest lodge man, alesakamigwi udlagwedewugan, it is because I spent many years walking about myself, listening to voices that came not just from the people but from animals and trees and stones.
Joseph Bruchac
There are two tragedies in life. One is never getting your heart's desire. The other is getting it.
Joan D. Vinge (The Summer Queen (The Snow Queen Cycle, #3))
Winter is not the death of the life cycle, but its crucible.
Katherine May (Wintering: The power of rest and retreat in difficult times)
Yes. There's really only one question that can be answered, Genry, and we already know the answer....The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty: not knowing what comes next.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Left Hand of Darkness (Hainish Cycle, #4))
About 10 minutes ago, we all woke up because of this strange roaring sound. We all raced toward the sound, which turned out to be the washing machine going back on. Who knew the rinse cycle could be so scary?
Susan Beth Pfeffer (Life As We Knew It (Last Survivors, #1))
You fear them because you fear death, and rightly: for death is terrible and must be feared,' the mage said...'And life is also a terrible thing,' Ged said, 'and must be feared and praised.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Farthest Shore (Earthsea Cycle, #3))
All perceptible matter comes from a primary substance, or tenuity beyond conception, filling all space, the akasha or luminiferous ether, which is acted upon by the life giving Prana or creative force, calling into existence, in never-ending cycles all things and phenomena.
Nikola Tesla
War as a moral metaphor is limited, limiting, and dangerous. By reducing the choices of action to “a war against” whatever-it-is, you divide the world into Me or Us (good) and Them or It (bad) and reduce the ethical complexity and moral richness of our life to Yes/No, On/Off. This is puerile, misleading, and degrading. In stories, it evades any solution but violence and offers the reader mere infantile reassurance. All too often the heroes of such fantasies behave exactly as the villains do, acting with mindless violence, but the hero is on the “right” side and therefore will win. Right makes might.
Ursula K. Le Guin (A Wizard of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle, #1))
You don't have to do this," Ronan said. "There isn't anything else, man." "There's reality." Kavinsky laughed the word. "Reality! Reality's what other people dream for you." "Reality's where other people are," Ronan replied. He stretched out his arms. "What's here, K? Nothing! No one!" "Just us." There was a heavy understanding in that statement, amplified by the dream. I know what you are, Kavinsky had said. "That's not enough," Ronan replied.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
Just like a seed doesn’t turn into a tree the next day after sowing it. In a similar fashion, your idea takes time as well.
Pooja Agnihotri (17 Reasons Why Businesses Fail :Unscrew Yourself From Business Failure)
We live in one of the few epochs of humanity where life isn't just a painful cycle of toil, fatigue, and collapse. Now pleasure gyrates us through those stages.
Bauvard (Some Inspiration for the Overenthusiastic)
Do not feel bad because of it.  It's impossible to go through life unscathed.  Nor should you want to.  By the hurts we accumulate, we measure both our follies and our accomplishment.
Christopher Paolini (Inheritance (The Inheritance Cycle, #4))
Life was better than death. Awake was better than asleep.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
Sexual frenzy is our compensation for the tedious moments we must suffer in the passage of life. 'Nothing in excess,' professed the ancient Greeks. Why if I spend half the month in healthy scholarship and pleasant sleep, shouldn't I be allowed the other half to howl at the moon and pillage the groins of Europe's great beauties?
Roman Payne
After a pause, he asked, 'What do you think of Nasuada's plans?' 'Mmm...she's doomed! You're doomed! They're all doomed!'She cackled, doubling over, then straightened abruptly. 'notice I didn't specify what kind of doom, so no matter what happens, I predicted it. How very wise of me.' She lifted the basket again, setting it on one hip. 'I supposed I won't see you for a while, so farewell, best of luck, avoid roasted cabbage, don't eat earwax, and look on the bright side of life!' And with a cheery wink, she strolled off, leaving Eragon blinking and nonplussed.
Christopher Paolini (Eldest (The Inheritance Cycle, #2))
Closing The Cycle One always has to know when a stage comes to an end. If we insist on staying longer than the necessary time, we lose the happiness and the meaning of the other stages we have to go through. Closing cycles, shutting doors, ending chapters - whatever name we give it, what matters is to leave in the past the moments of life that have finished. Did you lose your job? Has a loving relationship come to an end? Did you leave your parents' house? Gone to live abroad? Has a long-lasting friendship ended all of a sudden? You can spend a long time wondering why this has happened. You can tell yourself you won't take another step until you find out why certain things that were so important and so solid in your life have turned into dust, just like that. But such an attitude will be awfully stressing for everyone involved: your parents, your husband or wife, your friends, your children, your sister, everyone will be finishing chapters, turning over new leaves, getting on with life, and they will all feel bad seeing you at a standstill. None of us can be in the present and the past at the same time, not even when we try to understand the things that happen to us. What has passed will not return: we cannot for ever be children, late adolescents, sons that feel guilt or rancor towards our parents, lovers who day and night relive an affair with someone who has gone away and has not the least intention of coming back. Things pass, and the best we can do is to let them really go away. That is why it is so important (however painful it may be!) to destroy souvenirs, move, give lots of things away to orphanages, sell or donate the books you have at home. Everything in this visible world is a manifestation of the invisible world, of what is going on in our hearts - and getting rid of certain memories also means making some room for other memories to take their place. Let things go. Release them. Detach yourself from them. Nobody plays this life with marked cards, so sometimes we win and sometimes we lose. Do not expect anything in return, do not expect your efforts to be appreciated, your genius to be discovered, your love to be understood. Stop turning on your emotional television to watch the same program over and over again, the one that shows how much you suffered from a certain loss: that is only poisoning you, nothing else. Nothing is more dangerous than not accepting love relationships that are broken off, work that is promised but there is no starting date, decisions that are always put off waiting for the "ideal moment." Before a new chapter is begun, the old one has to be finished: tell yourself that what has passed will never come back. Remember that there was a time when you could live without that thing or that person - nothing is irreplaceable, a habit is not a need. This may sound so obvious, it may even be difficult, but it is very important. Closing cycles. Not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because that no longer fits your life. Shut the door, change the record, clean the house, shake off the dust. Stop being who you were, and change into who you are.
Paulo Coelho
The cycle of life only goes one direction, not even alchemy can change that" -Ed Elric
荒川 弘 Hiromu Arakawa
But that’s the thing Artie. What if Romani isn’t a man ” Amelia said leaning forward. “Great. We’ll alert Scotland Yard and tell them they’re looking for a vampire. Or a werewolf. I’m assuming you’ve cross-referenced this with the lunar cycles.” “What if it’s a name ” Amelia said undaunted. She spread the files across the desk. “A name that has been used by a lot of people for a very long time.” “Excellent.” Her boss pushed the files aside and returned to his order and his lists and his life. “You cracked it. Great work. I’ll call the Henley right away and tell them Leonardo’s Angel Returning to Heaven was stolen by a name.
Ally Carter (Uncommon Criminals (Heist Society, #2))
Conflict can and should be handled constructively; when it is, relationships benefit. Conflict avoidance is *not* the hallmark of a good relationship. On the contrary, it is a symptom of serious problems and of poor communication.
Harriet B. Braiker (Who's Pulling Your Strings? How to Break the Cycle of Manipulation and Regain Control of Your Life)
They couldn't hurt Gansey. Nothing could hurt him; people who said money couldn't buy everything hadn't seen anyone as rich as the Aglionby boys. They were untouchable, immune to life's troubles. Only death couldn't be swiped away by a credit card.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
It is not what a man is capable of doing, but what he chooses to do that is important.
Honor Raconteur (Jaunten (Advent Mage Cycle, #1))
War as a moral metaphor is limited, limiting, and dangerous. By reducing the choices of action to “a war against” whatever-it-is, you divide the world into Me or Us (good) and Them or It (bad) and reduce the ethical complexity and moral richness of our life to Yes/No, On/Off.
Ursula K. Le Guin (A Wizard of Earthsea (Earthsea Cycle, #1))
The unknown," said Faxe's soft voice in the forest, "the unforetold, the unproven, that is what life is based on. Ignorance is the ground of thought. Unproof is the ground of action. If it were proven that there is no God there would be no religion. No Handdara, no Yomesh, no hearthgods, nothing. But also if it were proven that there is a God, there would be no religion. ... Tell me, Genry, what is known? What is sure, unpredictable, inevitable -- the one certain thing you know concerning your future, and mine?" That we shall die." Yes, There's really only one question that can be answered, Genry, and we already know the answer. ... The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty: not knowing what comes next.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Left Hand of Darkness (Hainish Cycle, #4))
(...)best of luck, avoid roasted cabbage, don't eat earwax, and look on the bright side of life!
Christopher Paolini (Eldest (The Inheritance Cycle, #2))
They can send death at once, but life is slower...
Ursula K. Le Guin (Rocannon's World (Hainish Cycle, #1))
I'll take my chances with this life all the same. The next one will find you no matter where you run. No sense chasing it.
Peter V. Brett (The Warded Man (The Demon Cycle, #1))
I'm not the person I once was. I have Thorn now, and... I'm not fighting for myself anymore....It makes a difference....I used to think you were a fool to keep risking your life as you have...I know better now. I understand...why. I understand...' His [Murtagh] eyes widened and his grimace relaxed, as if his pain was forgotten, and an inner light seemed to illuminate his features. 'I understand-we understand.
Christopher Paolini (Inheritance (The Inheritance Cycle, #4))
We should be telling girls what they already know but rarely see affirmed: that the lives they lead inside their own self-contained bodies; the skills they attain through their own concentration and rigor, and the unique phase in their lives during which they may explore boys and eroticism at their own pace - these are magical. And they constitute the entrance point to a life cycle of a sexuality that should be held sacred.
Naomi Wolf (Promiscuities)
I can worship Nature, and that fulfills my need for miracles and beauty. Art gives a spiritual depth to existence -- I can find worlds bigger and deeper than my own in music, paintings, and books. And from my friends and family I receive the highest benediction, emotional contact, and personal affirmation. I can bow before the works of Man, from buildings to babies, and that fulfills my need for wonder. I can believe in the sanctity of Life, and that becomes the Revealed Word, to live my life as I believe it should be, not as I'm told to by self-appointed guides.
Neil Peart (The Masked Rider: Cycling in West Africa)
He wondered if he was going to go through each year of his life thinking about how stupid he’d been the year before.
Maggie Stiefvater (Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle, #3))
Love, family, accomplishments - they are all torn away, leaving nothing. What is the worth of anything we do? Saphira: The worth is in the act. Your worth halts when you surrender the will to change and experience life.
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
Everything turns in circles and spirals with the cosmic heart until infinity. Everything has a vibration that spirals inward or outward — and everything turns together in the same direction at the same time. This vibration keeps going: it becomes born and expands or closes and destructs — only to repeat the cycle again in opposite current. Like a lotus, it opens or closes, dies and is born again. Such is also the story of the sun and moon, of me and you. Nothing truly dies. All energy simply transforms.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
It was lunar symbolism that enabled man to relate and connect such heterogeneous things as: birth, becoming, death, and ressurection; the waters, plants, woman, fecundity, and immortality; the cosmic darkness, prenatal existence, and life after death, followed by the rebirth of the lunar type ("light coming out of darkness"); weaving, the symbol of the "thread of life," fate, temporality, and death; and yet others. In general most of the ideas of cycle, dualism, polarity, opposition, conflict, but also of reconciliation of contraries, of coincidentia oppositorum, were either discovered or clarified by virtue of lunar symbolism. We may even speak of a metaphysics of the moon, in the sense of a consistent system of "truths" relating to the mode of being peculiar to living creatures, to everything in the cosmos that shares in life, that is, in becoming, growth and waning, death and ressurrection.
Mircea Eliade (The Sacred and the Profane: The Nature of Religion)
Haven't had your fill of interesting events?" "Never. They are the spice of life." She held up her half-finished hat. "How do you like it?" "It's nice. The blue is pretty. But what do the runes say?" "Raxacori-Oh, never mind. It wouldn't mean a thing to you anyway. Safe travels to you and Saphira, Eragon. And remember to watch out for earwigs and wild hamsters.  Ferocious things, wild hamsters." 
Christopher Paolini (Inheritance (The Inheritance Cycle, #4))
If through no fault of his own the hero is crushed by a bulldozer in Act II, we are not impressed. Even though life is often like this—the absconding cashier on his way to Nicaragua is killed in a collision at the airport, the prominent statesman dies of a stroke in the midst of the negotiations he has spent years to bring about, the young lovers are drowned in a boating accident the day before their marriage—such events, the warp and woof of everyday life, seem irrelevant, meaningless. They are crude, undigested, unpurged bits of reality—to draw a metaphor from the late J. Edgar Hoover, they are “raw files.” But it is the function of great art to purge and give meaning to human suffering, and so we expect that if the hero is indeed crushed by a bulldozer in Act II there will be some reason for it, and not just some reason but a good one, one which makes sense in terms of the hero’s personality and action. In fact, we expect to be shown that he is in some way responsible for what happens to him.
Bernard Knox (The Oedipus Cycle: Oedipus Rex, Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone)
Witchcraft had once been widely used before cursed by the society. I see today the society presumes technology will have a different treatment.
Toba Beta (Betelgeuse Incident: Insiden Bait Al-Jauza)
It was so impossible to live life backward.
Maggie Stiefvater (Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle, #3))
Netflix learned a similar lesson early on in its life cycle: don’t trust what people tell you; trust what they do.
Seth Stephens-Davidowitz (Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are)
Moderation is a wiser policy than zealotry
Christopher Paolini (Brisingr (The Inheritance Cycle, #3))
The narratives we create in order to justify our actions and choices become in so many ways who we are. They are the things we say back to ourselves to explain our complicated lives. Perhaps the reason you've not yet been able to forgive yourself is that you're still invested in your self-loathing. Perhaps not forgiving yourself is the flip side of your stealing-this-now cycle. Would you be a better or worse person if you forgave yourself for the bad things you did? If you perpetually condemn yourself for being a liar and a thief, does that make you good?
Cheryl Strayed (Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar)
But when we crave power over life—endless wealth, unassailable safety, immortality—then desire becomes greed. And if knowledge allies itself to that greed, then comes evil. Then the balance of the world is swayed, and ruin weighs heavy in the scale.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Farthest Shore (Earthsea Cycle, #3))
Plants and animals don’t fight the winter; they don’t pretend it’s not happening and attempt to carry on living the same lives that they lived in the summer. They prepare. They adapt. They perform extraordinary acts of metamorphosis to get them through. Winter is a time of withdrawing from the world, maximising scant resources, carrying out acts of brutal efficiency and vanishing from sight; but that’s where the transformation occurs. Winter is not the death of the life cycle, but its crucible.
Katherine May (Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times)
Gansey turned the key. The engine turned over once, paused for the briefest of moments - and then roared to deafening life. The Camaro lived to fight another day. The radio was even working, playing the Stevie Nicks song that always sounded to Gansey like it was about a one-winged dove.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
I suppose the most important thing, the heaviest single factor in one's life, is whether one's born male or female. In most societies it determines one's expectations, activities, outlook, ethics, manners—almost everything. Vocabulary. Semiotic usages. Clothing. Even food. Women... women tend to eat less... It's extremely hard to separate the innate differences from the learned ones. Even where women participate equally with men in the society, they still after all do all the childbearing, and so most of the child-rearing....
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Left Hand of Darkness (Hainish Cycle, #4))
They are young and life has no limits. Nothing is impossible, nothing beyond doing or knowing. The world is theirs and everything in it.
Stephen R. Lawhead (Taliesin (The Pendragon Cycle #1))
Life is a continuous cycle of once-terrifying things becoming normal.
Kim Young-ha (Your Republic Is Calling You)
You're born and you keep getting older and grayer and sicker, and no matter what efforts you make to reverse the process, you die, every single time. To repeat: worse, worse, worse, and then death. I have a long way to go before the worst. This is only the beginning.
Val Emmich (Dear Evan Hansen)
Alexia's books called this end of the vampire life cycle dissanimation. Alexia, who thought the action astoundingly similar to a soufflé going flat, decided at that moment to call it the Grand Collapse.
Gail Carriger (Soulless (Parasol Protectorate, #1))
Life is not made of atoms,it is merely built out of them. What life is actually 'made of' is cycles of cause and effect, loops of causal flow. These phenomenon are just as real as atoms - perhaps even more real. If anything, the entire universe is actually made from events, of which atoms are merely some of the consequences.
Steve Grand (Creation: Life and How to Make It)
Cycling, cycling forever bear, wolf, caribou. When had it all started, where will it end? We are all part of one, from such simple beginnings and yet all so different. Yet one. One and again.
Kathryn Lasky (Lone Wolf (Wolves of the Beyond, #1))
I am born as the sun, But then turn into the moon, As my blonde hairs turn Grayish-white and fall to The ground, Only to be buried again, Then to be born again, Into a thousand suns And a thousand moons. HYMN OF THE DIVINE DANDELION by Suzy Kassem Copyright 1993-1994 - A SPRING FOR WISDOM
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
Don't you think I ever wanted other things? Don't you think I had dreams and hopes? What about my life? What about me. Don't you think it ever crossed my mind to want to know other men? That I wanted to lay up somewhere and forget about my responsibilities? That I wanted someone to make me laugh so I could feel good? You not the only one who's got wants and needs. But I held on to you, Troy. I took all my feelings, my wants and needs, my dreams...and I buried them inside you. I planted myself inside you and waited to bloom. And it didn't take me no eighteen years to find out the soil was hard and rocky and it wasn't never gonna bloom.
August Wilson (Fences (The Century Cycle, #6))
My race is very old," Ketho said. "We have been civilized for a thousand millenia. We have histories of hundreds of those millenia. We have tried everything. Anarchism, with the rest. But I have not tried it. They say there is nothing new under any sun. But if each life is not new, each single life, then why are we born?
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Dispossessed (Hainish Cycle, #6))
If you can see a thing whole, it seems that it's always beautiful. Planet,lives...But close up, a world's all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. You need distance, interval. The way to see how beautiful the earth is, is to see it as the moon. The way to see how beautiful life is, is from the vantage point of death.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Dispossessed (Hainish Cycle, #6))
It’s all part of the life-cycle of an economy. First it’s lawless capitalism until that starts to impede growth. Next comes regulation, law enforcement, and taxes. After that: public benefits and entitlements. Then, finally, overexpenditure and collapse.
Andy Weir (Artemis)
A disruption of the circadian cycle—the metabolic and glandular rhythms that are central to our workaday life—seems to be involved in many, if not most, cases of depression; this is why brutal insomnia so often occurs and is most likely why each day’s pattern of distress exhibits fairly predictable alternating periods of intensity and relief.
William Styron (Darkness Visible: A Memoir of Madness)
In the life cycle of an intense emotion, if it isn't acted upon, it eventually peaks and then decreases. But as Dr. Linehan explains, people with BPD have a different physiological experience with this process because of three key biological vulnerabilities (1993a): First, we're highly sensitive to emotional stimuli (meaning we experience social dynamics, the environment, and our own inner states with an acuteness similar to having exposed nerve endings). Second, we respond more intensely and much more quickly, than other people. And third, we don't 'come down' from our emotions for a long time. One the nerves have been touched, the sensations keep peaking. Shock waves of emotion that might pass through others in minutes keep cresting in us for hours, sometimes days.
Kiera Van Gelder
Kekulé dreams the Great Serpent holding its own tail in its mouth, the dreaming Serpent which surrounds the World. But the meanness, the cynicism with which this dream is to be used. The Serpent that announces, "The World is a closed thing, cyclical, resonant, eternally-returning," is to be delivered into a system whose only aim is to violate the Cycle. Taking and not giving back, demanding that "productivity" and "earnings" keep on increasing with time, the System removing from the rest of the World these vast quantities of energy to keep its own tiny desperate fraction showing a profit: and not only most of humanity—most of the World, animal, vegetable, and mineral, is laid waste in the process. The System may or may not understand that it's only buying time. And that time is an artificial resource to begin with, of no value to anyone or anything but the System, which must sooner or later crash to its death, when its addiction to energy has become more than the rest of the World can supply, dragging with it innocent souls all along the chain of life. Living inside the System is like riding across the country in a bus driven by a maniac bent on suicide . . . though he's amiable enough, keeps cracking jokes back through the loudspeaker . . .
Thomas Pynchon (Gravity's Rainbow)
It was this: Gansey saying, "I like you an awful lot, Blue Sargent." It was this: Blue's smile – crooked, wry, ridiculous, flustered. There was a lot of happiness tucked in the corner of that smile, and even though her face was several inches from Gansey, some of it still spilled out and got on him. She put her finger on his cheek where he knew his own smile was dimpling it, and then they took each other’s hands, and they climbed back up together. It was this: this moment and no other moment, and for the first time that Gansey could remember, he knew what it would feel like to be present in his own life.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
It is not uncommon for someone to be a self-saboteur and compound that by also having a victim mentality. It is as though they are holding their own breath and then blaming others for their inability to breathe. If they can break free from this cycle, everything in their life changes for the better.
Steve Maraboli
She thought about how it was to have been a woman in the prime of life, with children and a man, and then to lose all that, becoming old and a widow, powerless. But even so she did not feel she understood his shame, his agony of humiliation. Perhaps only a man could feel so. A woman got used to shame.
Ursula K. Le Guin (Tehanu (Earthsea Cycle, #4))
Everything already in place: the retired hit man currently sleeping with Maura; his supernatural-obsessed ex-boss currently sleeping in Boston; the creepy entity buried in rocks beneath the ley line; the unfamiliar creatures crawling out of a cave mouth behind an abandoned farmhouse; the ley line's growing power; the magical sentient forest on the ley line; one boy's bargain with the magical forest; one boy's ability to dream things to life; one dead boy who refused to be laid to rest; one girl who supernaturally amplified 90 percent of the aforementioned list.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
There is a kind of sadness in not wanting the things that give so many other people their life's meaning. There can be sadness at not living out a more universal story - the suppose life cycle - how out of one life cycle another cycle is supposed to come. But when out of your life, no new cycle comes, what does that feel like? It feels like nothing. Yet there is a bit of a let-down feeling when the great things that happen in the lives of others - you don't actually want those things for yourself.
Sheila Heti (Motherhood)
So one must be resigned to being a clock that measures the passage of time, now out of order, now repaired, and whose mechanism generates despair and love as soon as its maker sets it going? Are we to grow used to the idea that every man relives ancient torments, which are all the more profound because they grow comic with repetition? That human existence should repeat itself, well and good, but that it should repeat itself like a hackneyed tune, or a record a drunkard keeps playing as he feeds coins into the jukebox...
Stanisław Lem (Solaris)
Look at all the life in this," she said. "Every pip could become a tree, and every tree could bear another hundred fruits and every fruit could bear another hundred trees. And so on to infinity." I picked the picks from my tongue with my fingers. "Just imagine," she said. "If every seed grew, there'd be no room in the world for anything but pomegranate trees.
David Almond (Skellig (Skellig, #1))
One always has to know when a stage comes to an end. If we insist on staying longer than the necessary time, we lose the happiness and the meaning of the other stages we have to go through. Closing cycles, shutting doors, ending chapters – whatever name we give it, what matters is to leave in the past the moments of life that have finished.
Paulo Coelho
A witch is someone who has dedicated her life to learning about the connections between things. She studies the different cycles and her place in them. She learns how to use the energy in herself and in the world to make changes. And most of all, she tries to make the world a better place for herself and other people.
Isobel Bird (The Challenge Box (Circle of Three, #14))
In the end, it was such a simple, small thing. He had felt flashes of it before in his life, the absolute certainty. But the truth was that he’d kept walking away from it. It was a far more terrifying idea to imagine how much control he really had over how his life turned out. Easier to believe that he was a gallant ship tossed by fate than to captain it himself.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
He said our lives mean nothing except as a cycle of regeneration, that we are incomprehensibly brief sparks, just as the animals are, that we are no more important than they are, no more worthy of life than any living creature. That in our self-importance, in our search for meaning, we have forgotten how to share the planet that gave us life.
Charlotte McConaghy (Migrations)
The human life cycle no less than evolves around the box; from the open-topped box called a bassinet, to the pine box we call a coffin, the box is our past and, just as assuredly, our future. It should not surprise us then that the lowly box plays such a significant role in the first Christmas story. For Christmas began in a humble, hay-filled box of splintered wood. The Magi, wise men who had traveled far to see the infant king, laid treasure-filled boxes at the feet of that holy child. And in the end, when He had ransomed our sins with His blood, the Lord of Christmas was laid down in a box of stone. How fitting that each Christmas season brightly wrapped boxes skirt the pine boughs of Christmas trees around the world.
Richard Paul Evans (The Christmas Box (The Christmas Box, #1))
And some day there will be nothing left of everything that has twisted my life and grieved it and filled me so often with such anguish. Some day, with the last exhaustion, peace will come and the motherly earth will gather me back home. It won't be the end of things, only a way of being born again, a bathing and a slumbering where the old and the withered sink down, where the young and new begin to breathe. Then, with other thoughts, I will walk along streets like these, and listen to streams, and overhear what the sky says in the evening, over and over and over.
Hermann Hesse
If you can see a thing whole," he said, "it seems that it's always beautiful. Planets, lives. . . . But close up, a world's all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you loose the pattern. You need distance, interval. The way to see how beautiful earth is, is to see it from the moon. The way to see how beautiful life is, is from the vantage point of death." "That's all right for Urras. Let it stay off there and be the moon-I don't want it! But I am not going to stand up on a gravestone and look down on life and say, 'O lovely!' I want to see it whole right in the middle of it, here, now. I don't give a hoot for eternity." "It's nothing to do with eternity," said Shevek, grinning, a thin shaggy man of silver and shadow. "All you have to do to see life as a whole is to see it as mortal. I'll die, you'll die; how could we love each other otherwise? The sun's going to burn out, what else keeps it shining?" "Ah! your talk, your damned philosophy!" "Talk? It's not talk. It's not reason. It's hand's touch. I touch the wholeness, I hold it. Which is moonlight, which is Takver? How shall I fear death? When I hold it, when I hold in my hands the light-" "Don't be propertarian," Takver muttered. "Dear heart, don't cry." "I'm not crying. You are. Those are your tears." "I'm cold. The moonlight's cold." "Lie down." A great shiver went through his body as she took him in her arms. "I'm afraid, Takver," he whispered.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Dispossessed (Hainish Cycle, #6))
A goal is a specific objective that you either achieve or don't sometime in the future. A system is something you do on a regular basis that increases your odds of happiness in the long run. If you do something every day, its a system. If you're waiting to achieve it someday in the future, it's a goal. If you achieve your goal, you celebrate and feel terrific, but only until you realize you just lost the thing that gave you purpose and direction. Your options are to feel empty and useless, perhaps enjoying the spoils of your success until they bore you, or set new goals and reenter the cycle of permanent presuccess failure. All I'm suggesting is that thinking of goals and systems as very different concepts has power. Goal-oriented people exist in a state of continuous presuccess failure at best, and permanent failure at worst if things never work out. Systems people succeed every time they apply their systems, in the sense that they did what they intended to do. The goals people are fighting the feeling of discouragement at each turn. The systems people are feeling good everytime they apply their system. That's a big difference in terms of maintaining your personal energy in the right direction.
Scott Adams (How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big: Kind of the Story of My Life)
Both Hegel and Marx believed that the evolution of human societies was not open-ended, but would end when mankind had achieved a form of society that satisfied its deepest and most fundamental longings. Both thinkers thus posited an "end of history": for Hegel this was the liberal state, while for Marx it was a communist society. This did not mean that the natural cycle of birth, life, and death would end, that important events would no longer happen, or that newspapers reporting them would cease to be published. It meant, rather, that there would be no further progress in the development of underlying principles and institutions, because all of the really big questions had been settled.
Francis Fukuyama
All life is rife with possibilities. Seeds have possibilities, but all their tomorrows are caught by the patterning of their life cycle. Animals have possibilities that are greater than that of a fir tree or a blade of grass. Still, though, for most animals, the pattern of instinct, the patterns of their lives, are very strong. Humanity has a far greater range of possibilities, especially the very young. Who will children grow up to be? Who will they marry, what will they believe, what will they create? Creation is a very powerful seed of possibility.
Patricia Briggs (River Marked (Mercy Thompson, #6))
Life is a repeated cycle of getting lost and then finding yourself again. There are many smaller cycles within that cycle where you get lost to a smaller degree and then remember yourself again. Sometimes you do it to yourself on purpose, consciously or unconsciously. Every time you get lost it is so that you can learn something or experience something from a different perspective.
Jay Woodman
O perpetual revolution of configured stars, o perpetual recurrence of determined seasons, o world of spring and autumn, birth and dying! The endless cycle of idea and action, endless invention, endless experiment, brings knowledge of motion, but not of stillness; knowledge of speech, but not of silence; knowledge of words, and ignorance of the Word. All our knowledge brings us nearer to our ignorance, all our ignorance brings us nearer to death, but nearness to death no nearer to God. Where is the Life we have lost in living? Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information? The cycles of Heaven in twenty centuries bring us farther from God and nearer to the Dust.
T.S. Eliot (The Waste Land and Other Poems)
Your judgments about another person say more about your own character than the character of the person you are pointing a finger at. This is the key and one of the most fundamental insights about the ‘red flags’ that we often dismiss regarding the people in our lives. If someone complains a lot to you about other people, guess what? That is part of their current character. And, as quickly as the tide changes, you can just as easily become the person they target and criticize, point fingers at, and negatively judge. Forever and always, until vibrations are raised, this will be the cycle of the relationship. So, it’s your choice to continue to engage in the cycle with them, or to move on. There are plenty of people who do not criticize, point fingers, or judge. THIS is the kind of character we want to foster within ourselves. THIS is the character of the kind of people we DO want to develop close relationships with.
Alaric Hutchinson (Living Peace: Essential Teachings for Enriching Life)
So now do you see why books are hated and feared? They show the pores in the face of life. The comfortable people want only wax moon faces, poreless, hairless, expressionless. We are living in a time when flowers are trying to live on flowers, instead of growing on good rain and black loam. Even fireworks, for all their prettiness, come from the chemistry of the earth. Yet somehow we think we can grow, feeding on flowers and fireworks, without completing the cycle back to reality.
Ray Bradbury (Fahrenheit 451)
For me, family means the silent treatment. At any given moment, someone is always not speaking to someone else.' Really,' I said. We're passive-aggressive people,' she explained, taking a sip of her coffee. 'Silence is our weapon of choice. Right now, for instance, I'm not speaking to two of my sisters and one brother... At mine [my house], silence is golden. And common.' To me,' Reggie said, picking up a bottle of Vitamin A and moving it thoughtfully from one hand to the other, 'family is, like, the wellspring of human energy. The place where all life begins.'... Harriet considered this as she took a sip of coffee. 'Huh,' she said. 'I guess when someone else does something worse. Then you need people on your side, so you make up with one person, jsut as you're getting pissed off at another.' So it's an endless cycle,' I said. I guess.' She took another sip. 'Coming together, falling apart. Isn't that what families are all about?
Sarah Dessen (Lock and Key)
On Generosity On our own, we conclude: there is not enough to go around we are going to run short of money of love of grades of publications of sex of beer of members of years of life we should seize the day seize our goods seize our neighbours goods because there is not enough to go around and in the midst of our perceived deficit you come you come giving bread in the wilderness you come giving children at the 11th hour you come giving homes to exiles you come giving futures to the shut down you come giving easter joy to the dead you come – fleshed in Jesus. and we watch while the blind receive their sight the lame walk the lepers are cleansed the deaf hear the dead are raised the poor dance and sing we watch and we take food we did not grow and life we did not invent and future that is gift and gift and gift and families and neighbours who sustain us when we did not deserve it. It dawns on us – late rather than soon- that you “give food in due season you open your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing.” By your giving, break our cycles of imagined scarcity override our presumed deficits quiet our anxieties of lack transform our perceptual field to see the abundance………mercy upon mercy blessing upon blessing. Sink your generosity deep into our lives that your muchness may expose our false lack that endlessly receiving we may endlessly give so that the world may be made Easter new, without greedy lack, but only wonder, without coercive need but only love, without destructive greed but only praise without aggression and invasiveness…. all things Easter new….. all around us, toward us and by us all things Easter new. Finish your creation, in wonder, love and praise. Amen.
Walter Brueggemann
In older myths, the dark road leads downward into the Underworld, where Persephone is carried off by Hades, much against her will, while Ishtar descends of her own accord to beat at the gates of Hell. This road of darkness lies to the West, according to Native American myth, and each of us must travel it at some point in our lives. The western road is one of trials, ordeals, disasters and abrupt life changes — yet a road to be honored, nevertheless, as the road on which wisdom is gained. James Hillman, whose theory of 'archetypal psychology' draws extensively on Greco–Roman myth, echoes this belief when he argues that darkness is vital at certain periods of life, questioning our modern tendency to equate mental health with happiness. It is in the Underworld, he reminds us, that seeds germinate and prepare for spring. Myths of descent and rebirth connect the soul's cycles to those of nature.
Terri Windling
I don’t know. Do men kill men, except in madness? Does any beast kill its own kind? Only the insects. These yumens kill us as lightly as we kill snakes. The one who taught me said that they kill one another, in quarrels, and also in groups, like ants fighting. I haven’t seen that. But I know they don’t spare one who asks life. They will strike a bowed neck, I have seen it! There is a wish to kill in them, and therefore I saw fit to put them to death.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Word for World Is Forest (Hainish Cycle, #5))
Because what you give your attention to is the person you become. Put another way: the mind is the portal to the soul, and what you fill your mind with will shape the trajectory of your character. In the end, your life is no more than the sum of what you gave your attention to. That bodes well for those apprentices of Jesus who give the bulk of their attention to him and to all that is good, beautiful, and true in his world. But not for those who give their attention to the 24-7 news cycle of outrage and anxiety and emotion-charged drama or the nonstop feed of celebrity gossip, titillation, and cultural drivel. (As if we “give” it in the first place; much of it is stolen by a clever algorithm out to monetize our precious attention.) But again: we become what we give our attention to, for better or worse.
John Mark Comer (The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry: How to stay emotionally healthy and spiritually alive in the chaos of the modern world)
There comes a day in every man's life when he stops looking forward and starts looking back. Because of my father's circumstances, I had a sad commentary on life, but I now understood that he was offering me his own gift, one that only time can provide. He was offering me the gift of perspective. My father was telling me that while we tend to remember the dramatic incidents that change history---Armstrong's walk on the moon, Nixon's resignation, and the Loma Prieta earthquake---we live for the quiet, intimate moments that mark not our calendars, but our hearts: The day we marry. The days our children are born. Their first step. Their first word. Their first day of school. And when our children grow, we remember those moments with a touch of melancholy: the day they get their driver's license, the day we drive them to college, the day they marry, and the day they have their children. And the cycle begins anew. We realize it is in those quiet moments that each of us has the ability to make our lives extraordinary.
Robert Dugoni (The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell)
Because left to its own devices life would never produce love, it would only lead you to attraction, from attraction to pleasure, then to attachment, to satisfaction, which finally leads to wearisomeness and boredom. Then comes a plateau. Then once again the weary cycle: attraction, pleasure, attachment, fulfillment, satisfaction, boredom. All of this mixed with the anxieties, the jealousies, the possessiveness, the sorrow, the pain, that make the cycle a roller coaster. When you have gone repeatedly around and around the cycle, a time finally comes when you have had enough and want to call a halt to the whole process. And if you are lucky enough not to run into something or someone else that catches your eye, you will have at least attained a fragile peace. That is the most that life can give you; and you can mistakenly equate this state with freedom and you die without ever having known what it means to be really free and to love.
Anthony de Mello (The Way to Love)
The people thrown into other cultures go through something of the anguish of the butterfly, whose body must disintegrate and reform more than once in its life cycle. In her novel “Regeneration,” Pat Barker writes of a doctor who “knew only too well how often the early stages of change or cure may mimic deterioration. Cut a chrysalis open, and you will find a rotting caterpillar. What you will never find is that mythical creature, half caterpillar, half butterfly, a fit emblem of the human soul, for those whose cat of mind leads them to seek such emblems. No, the process of transformation consists almost entirely of decay.” But the butterfly is so fit an emblem of the human soul that its name in Greek is “psyche,” the word for soul. We have not much language to appreciate this phase of decay, this withdrawal, this era of ending that must precede beginning. Nor of the violence of the metamorphosis, which is often spoken of as though it were as graceful as a flower blooming.
Rebecca Solnit (A Field Guide to Getting Lost)
There was quiet, and then Ronan said, "I better go feed the bird." But he looked down at the gearshift instead, eyes unfocused. He said, "I keep thinking about what would've happened if Whelk had shot Gansey today." Adam hadn't let himself dwell on that possibility. Every time his thoughts came close to touching on the near miss, it opened up something dark and sharp edged inside him. It was hard to remember what life at Aglionby had been like before Gansey. The distant memories seemed difficult, lonely, more populated with late nights where Adam sat on the steps of the doublewide, blinking tears tears out of his eyes and wondering why he bothered. He'd been younger then, only a little more than a year ago. "But he didn't.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
Like you? I go out of here every morning… bust my butt…putting up with them crackers everyday…cause I like you? You about the biggest fool I ever saw. It’s my JOB. It’s my RESPONSIBILITY! You understand that? A man got to take care of his family. You live in my house… sleep on my bed clothes…fill you belly up with my food… cause you my son. You my flesh and blood. Not ‘cause I like you! Cause it’s my duty to take care of you. I OWE a responsibility to you! Let’s get this straight right here… before it go along any further… I ain’t got to like you. Mr. Rand don’t five me money come payday cause he likes me. He gives me cause he OWE me. I done give you everything I had to give you. I gave you your life! Me and your mama worked that out between us. And liking your black ass wasn’t part of the bargain. Don’t try and go through life worrying about if somebody like you or not. You best be making sure they doing right by you. You understand what I’m saying, boy?” - August Wilson, Fences, 1986.
August Wilson (Fences (The Century Cycle, #6))
It was better to meet friends at their houses, their mother, Aurora, explained, because Dad had a lot of breakable things around the farm. One of the breakable things: Aurora Lynch. Golden-haired Aurora was the obvious queen of a place like the Barns, a gentle and joyous ruler of a peaceful and secret country. She was a patron of her sons’ fanciful arts (although Declan, the eldest, was rarely fanciful), and she was a tireless playmate in her sons’ games of make-believe (although Declan, the eldest, was rarely playful). She loved Niall, of course – everyone loved larger-than-life Niall, the braggart poet, the musician king – but unlike everyone else, she preferred him in his silent moods. She loved the truth, and it was difficult to love both the truth and Niall Lynch when the latter was speaking.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
Is it not the singularity of life that terrifies us? Is not the decisive difference between comedy and tragedy that tragedy denies us another chance? Shakespeare over and over demonstrates life’s singularity — the irrevocability of our decisions, hasty and even mad though they be. How solemn and huge and deeply pathetic our life does loom in its once-and doneness, how inexorably linear, even though our rotating, revolving planet offers us the cycles of the day and of the year to suggest that existence is intrinsically cyclical, a playful spin, and that there will always be, tomorrow morning or the next, another chance.
John Updike (Self-Consciousness)
It was only when we brought Will back home, once the annex was adapted and ready, that I could see a point in making it beautiful again. I needed to give my son something to look at. I needed to tell him, silently, that things might change, grow, or fail, but that life did go on. That we were all part of some great cycle, some pattern that it was only God’s purpose to understand. I couldn’t say that to him, of course—Will and I have never been able to say much to each other—but I wanted to show him. A silent promise, if you like, that there was a bigger picture, a brighter future.
Jojo Moyes (Me Before You (Me Before You, #1))
We all know that feeling of wanting something so bad and then finally getting it. You feel this rush of dopamine, and then very soon after you crash and you need something else to give you that hit of dopamine. This is the vicious cycle that emerges from the empty promise of capitalism – that happiness comes from acquiring material possessions. The Native Americans have one of the most beautiful concepts in the world. They have 10,000 different languages and all these tribes and none of them have a word for ownership or possession. They know that they are just temporary stewards of the earth; no one can truly own anything.
Todd Perelmuter (Spiritual Words to Live by : 81 Daily Wisdoms and Meditations to Transform Your Life)
I live in nature where everything is connected, circular. The seasons are circular. The planet is circular, and so is the planet around the sun. The course of water over the earth is circular coming down from the sky and circulating through the world to spread life and then evaporating up again. I live in a circular teepee and build my fire in a circle. The life cycles of plants and animals are circular. I live outside where I can see this. The ancient people understood that our world is a circle, but we modern people have lost site of that. I don’t live inside buildings because buildings are dead places where nothing grows, where water doesn’t flow, and where life stops. I don’t want to live in a dead place. People say that I don’t live in a real world, but it’s modern Americans who live in a fake world, because they have stepped outside the natural circle of life. Do people live in circles today? No. They live in boxes. They wake up every morning in a box of their bedrooms because a box next to them started making beeping noises to tell them it was time to get up. They eat their breakfast out of a box and then they throw that box away into another box. Then they leave the box where they live and get into another box with wheels and drive to work, which is just another big box broken into little cubicle boxes where a bunch of people spend their days sitting and staring at the computer boxes in front of them. When the day is over, everyone gets into the box with wheels again and goes home to the house boxes and spends the evening staring at the television boxes for entertainment. They get their music from a box, they get their food from a box, they keep their clothing in a box, they live their lives in a box. Break out of the box! This not the way humanity lived for thousands of years.
Elizabeth Gilbert (The Last American Man)
I can look back and see that I’ve spent much of my life in a cloud of things that have tended to push “being kind” to the periphery. Things like: Anxiety. Fear. Insecurity. Ambition. The mistaken belief that enough accomplishment will rid me of all that anxiety, fear, insecurity, and ambition. The belief that if I can only accrue enough—enough accomplishment, money, fame—my neuroses will disappear. I’ve been in this fog certainly since, at least, my own graduation day. Over the years I’ve felt: Kindness, sure—but first let me finish this semester, this degree, this book; let me succeed at this job, and afford this house, and raise these kids, and then, finally, when all is accomplished, I’ll get started on the kindness. Except it never all gets accomplished. It’s a cycle that can go on … well, forever.
George Saunders (Congratulations, by the way: Some Thoughts on Kindness)
First, let no one rule your mind or body. Take special care that your thoughts remain unfettered. One may be a free man and yet be bound tighter than a slave. Give men your ear, but not your heart. Show respect for those in power, but don’t follow them blindly. Judge with logic and reason, but comment not. “Consider none your superior, whatever their rank or station in life. Treat all fairly or they will seek revenge. Be careful with your money. Hold fast to your beliefs and others will listen.” He continued at a slower pace, “Of the affairs of love . . . my only advice is to be honest. That’s your most powerful tool to unlock a heart or gain forgiveness. That is all I have to say.
Christopher Paolini (Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1))
WHAT YOU DO WITH TODAY MATTERS Have you commanded the morning since your days began, and caused the dawn to know its place? —JOB 38:12 Today has a place in eternity that no other day can take. There are things God has established for you to accomplish this day, and there are things the devil has set up to distract you. Certainly there is some leeway in this, and God gives an incredible amount of grace, but what we do with today matters, not only for ourselves but also for those God has appointed for us to touch. Father, I do not take today for granted. Download fresh vision and purpose into my spirit today so that I might take advantage of every opportunity You bring my way. I have a fresh anointing for the day ahead that is uncontaminated and uncompromised. By this anointing, every yoke is broken off of my life and every burden is lifted. Your yoke is easy, and Your burden is light. I declare that a new cycle of power and victory in my life begins right now. I break free from the cares of yesterday and will not take on any worries about tomorrow, for You have given me grace that is sufficient for each day in and of itself. Your mercies are new every morning, and You clothe me with newness of purpose as I wait upon You. In Jesus’s name, amen.
Cindy Trimm (Commanding Your Morning Daily Devotional: Unleash God's Power in Your Life--Every Day of the Year)
The greatest book in the world, the Mahabharata, tells us we all have to live and die by our karmic cycle. Thus works the perfect reward-and-punishment, cause-and-effect, code of the universe. We live out in our present life what we wrote out in our last. But the great moral thriller also orders us to rage against karma and its despotic dictates. It teaches us to subvert it. To change it. It tells us we also write out our next lives as we live out our present. The Mahabharata is not a work of religious instruction. It is much greater. It is a work of art. It understands men will always fall in the shifting chasm between the tug of the moral and the lure of the immoral. It is in this shifting space of uncertitude that men become men. Not animals, not gods. It understands truth is relative. That it is defined by context and motive. It encourages the noblest of men - Yudhishtra, Arjuna, Lord Krishna himself - to lie, so that a greater truth may be served. It understands the world is powered by desire. And that desire is an unknowable thing. Desire conjures death, destruction, distress. But also creates love, beauty, art. It is our greatest undoing. And the only reason for all doing. And doing is life. Doing is karma. Thus it forgives even those who desire intemperately. It forgives Duryodhana. The man who desires without pause. The man who precipitates the war to end all wars. It grants him paradise and the admiration of the gods. In the desiring and the doing this most reviled of men fulfils the mandate of man. You must know the world before you are done with it. You must act on desire before you renounce it. There can be no merit in forgoing the not known. The greatest book in the world rescues volition from religion and gives it back to man. Religion is the disciplinarian fantasy of a schoolmaster. The Mahabharata is the joyous song of life of a maestro. In its tales within tales it takes religion for a spin and skins it inside out. Leaves it puzzling over its own poisoned follicles. It gives men the chance to be splendid. Doubt-ridden architects of some small part of their lives. Duryodhanas who can win even as they lose.
Tarun J. Tejpal (The Alchemy of Desire)
Life and water are inseparable. Three quarters of the earth's surface is covered by water, just as three quarters of your body is made up of water. Even in the driest desert where rain may come just once every few years, the cycles of life are based on waiting for the arrival of water. Our bodies are not so patient. Every cell in your body needs water to survive, and that means that drinking plenty of clean, fresh water can make you stronger healthier and smarter. Water carries oxygen and fuel to your cells, lubricates your joints, regulates your body temperature, and plays a key roll in just about every function of your body. My number one roadie, POODIE, says, "You can't make a turd without grease.
Willie Nelson (The Tao of Willie: A Guide to the Happiness in Your Heart)
The ceremonies that persist—birthdays, weddings, funerals— focus only on ourselves, marking rites of personal transition. […] We know how to carry out this rite for each other and we do it well. But imagine standing by the river, flooded with those same feelings as the Salmon march into the auditorium of their estuary. Rise in their honor, thank them for all the ways they have enriched our lives, sing to honor their hard work and accomplishments against all odds, tell them they are our hope for the future, encourage them to go off into the world to grow, and pray that they will come home. Then the feasting begins. Can we extend our bonds of celebration and support from our own species to the others who need us? Many indigenous traditions still recognize the place of ceremony and often focus their celebrations on other species and events in the cycle of the seasons. In a colonist society the ceremonies that endure are not about land; they’re about family and culture, values that are transportable from the old country. Ceremonies for the land no doubt existed there, but it seems they did not survive emigration in any substantial way. I think there is wisdom in regenerating them here, as a means to form bonds with this land.
Robin Wall Kimmerer (Braiding Sweetgrass)
That night, Ronan didn’t dream. After Gansey and Blue had left the Barns, he leaned against one of the front porch pillars and looked out at his fireflies winking in the chilly darkness. He was so raw and electric that it was hard to believe that he was awake. Normally it took sleep to strip him to this naked energy. But this was not a dream. This was his life, his home, his night. After a few moments, he heard the door ease open behind him and Adam joined him. Silently they looked over the dancing lights in the fields. It was not difficult to see that Adam was working intensely with his own thoughts. Words kept rising up inside Ronan and bursting before they ever escaped. He felt he’d already asked the question; he couldn’t also give the answer. Three deer appeared at the tree line, just at the edge of the porch light’s reach. One of them was the beautiful pale buck, his antlers like branches or roots. He watched them, and they watched him, and then Ronan could not stand it. “Adam?” When Adam kissed him, it was every mile per hour Ronan had ever gone over the speed limit. It was every window-down, goose-bumps-on-skin, teeth-chattering-cold night drive. It was Adam’s ribs under Ronan’s hands and Adam’s mouth on his mouth, again and again and again. It was stubble on lips and Ronan having to stop, to get his breath, to restart his heart. They were both hungry animals, but Adam had been starving for longer. Inside, they pretended they would dream, but they did not. They sprawled on the living room sofa and Adam studied the tattoo that covered Ronan’s back: all the sharp edges that hooked wondrously and fearfully into each other. “Unguibus et rostro,” Adam said. Ronan put Adam’s fingers to his mouth. He was never sleeping again.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
Stephen watched the three glasses being raised from the counter as his father and his two cronies drank to the memory of their past. An abyss of fortune or of temperament sundered him from them. His mind seemed older than theirs: it shone coldly on their strifes and happiness and regrets like a moon upon a younger earth. No life or youth stirred in him as it had stirred in them. He had known neither the pleasure of companionship with others nor the vigour of rude male health nor filial piety. Nothing stirred within his soul but a cold and cruel and loveless lust. His childhood was dead or lost and with it his soul capable of simple joys, and he was drifting amid life like the barren shell of the moon. Art thou pale for weariness Of climbing heaven and gazing on the earth, Wandering companionless...? He repeated to himself the lines of Shelley's fragment. Its alternation of sad human ineffectiveness with vast inhuman cycles of activity chilled him, and he forgot his own human and ineffectual grieving.
James Joyce (A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man)
The cliche about prison life is that I am actually integrated into it, ruined by it, when my accommodation to it is so overwhelming that I can no longer stand or even imagine freedom, life outside prison, so that my release brings about a total psychic breakdown, or at least gives rise to a longing for the lost safety of prison life. The actual dialectic of prison life, however, is somewhat more refined. Prison in effect destroys me, attains a total hold over me, precisely when I do not fully consent to the fact that I am in prison but maintain a kind of inner distance towards it, stick to the illusion that ‘real life is elsewhere’ and indulge all the time in daydreaming about life outside, about nice things that are waiting for me after my release or escape. I thereby get caught in the vicious cycle of fantasy, so that when, eventually, I am released, the grotesque discord between fantasy and reality breaks me down. The only true solution is therefore fully to accept the rules of prison life and then, within the universe governed by these rules, to work out a way to beat them. In short, inner distance and daydreaming about Life Elsewhere in effect enchain me to prison, whereas full acceptance of the fact that I am really there, bound by prison rules, opens up a space for true hope.
Slavoj Žižek
The world didn’t have words to measure hate. There were tons, yards, years. Volts, knots, watts. Ronan could explain how fast his car was going. He could describe exactly how warm the day was. He could specifically convey his heart rate. But there was no way for him to tell anyone else exactly how much he hated Aglionby Academy. Any unit of measurement would have to include both the volume and the weight of the hate. And it would also have to include a component of time. The days logged in class, wasted, useless, learning skills for a life he didn’t want. No single word existed, probably, to contain the concept. All, perhaps. He had all the hate for Aglionby Academy. Thief? Aglionby was the thief. Ronan’s life was the dream, pillaged.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
When even despair ceases to serve any creative purpose, then surely we are justified in suicide. For what better grounds for suicide can there be than to go on making the same series of false moves which invariably lead to the same disaster and to repeat a pattern without knowing why it is false or wherein lies the flaw? And yet to percieve that in ourselves revolves a cycle of activity which is certain to end in paralysis of the will, desertion, panic and despair - always to go on loving those who have ceased to love us, and who have quite lost all resemblance to the selves who we loved! Suicide is infectious; what if the agonies which suicide endure before they are driven to take their own life, the emotion of 'all is lost' - are infectious too?
Cyril Connolly (The Unquiet Grave: A Word Cycle by Palinurus)
Would I be happy if I discovered that I could go to heaven forever? And the answer is no. Consider this argument. Think about what is forever. And think about the fact that the human mind, the entire human being, is built to last a certain period of time. Our programmed hormonal systems, the way we learn, the way we settle upon beliefs, and the way we love are all temporary. Because we go through a life's cycle. Now, if we were to be plucked out at the age of 12 or 56 or whenever, and taken up and told, "Now you will continue your existence as you are. We're not going to blot out your memories. We're not going to diminish your desires." You will exist in a state of bliss - whatever that is - forever. [...] Now think, a trillion times a trillion years. Enough time for universes like this one to be born, explode, form countless star systems and planets, then fade away to entropy. You will sit there watching this happen millions and millions of times and that will be just the beginning of the eternity that you've been consigned to bliss in this existence.
Edward O. Wilson
It is easy to be calm when there is nothing to worry about, Eragon. The true test of your self-control, however, is whether you can remain calm in a trying situation. You cannot allow anger or frustration to cloud your thoughts, not at the moment. Right now, you need your mind to be clear. Have you always been able to remain calm at times like this? The old dragon seemed to chuckle. No. I used to growl and bite and knock down trees and tear up the ground. Once, I broke the top off of a mountain in the Spine; the other dragons were rather upset with me for that. But I have had many years to learn that losing my temper rarely helps. You have not, I know, but allow my experience to guide you in this. Let go of your worries and focus on the task at hand. The future will be what is will, and fretting about it will only make your fears more likely to come true. I know, Eragon sighed, but it's not easy. Of course not. Few things of worth are. Then Glaedr withdrew and left him to the silence of his own mind.
Christopher Paolini (Inheritance (The Inheritance Cycle, #4))
After a thousand years pass, it builds its own funeral pyre, lining it with cinnamon, myrrh and cassia. Climbing to a rest on the very top, it examines the world all throughout the night with the ability to see true good and evil. When the sun rises the next morning, with great sorrow for all that it sees, it sings a haunting song. As it sings, the heat of the sun ignites the expensive spices and the Phoenix dies in the flames. But the Phoenix is not remarkable for its feathers or flames. It is most revered for its ability to climb from its own funeral pyre, from the very ashes of its old charred body, as a brand new life ready to live again once more. Life after life, it goes through this cycle. It absorbs human sorrow, only to rise from death to do it all again. It never wearies, it never tires. It never questions its fate. Some say that the Phoenix is real, that it exists somewhere out there in the mountains of Arabia, elusive and mysterious. Others say that the Phoenix is only a wish made by desperate humans to believe in the continuance of life. But I know a secret. We are the Phoenix.
Courtney Cole (Every Last Kiss (The Bloodstone Saga, #1))
Iam a sensitive, introverted woman, which means that I love humanity but actual human beings are tricky for me. I love people but not in person. For example, I would die for you but not, like…meet you for coffee. I became a writer so I could stay at home alone in my pajamas, reading and writing about the importance of human connection and community. It is an almost perfect existence. Except that every so often, while I’m thinking my thoughts, writing my words, living in my favorite spot—which is deep inside my own head—something stunning happens: A sirenlike noise tears through my home. I freeze. It takes me a solid minute to understand: The siren is the doorbell. A person is ringing my doorbell. I run out of my office to find my children also stunned, frozen, and waiting for direction about how to respond to this imminent home invasion. We stare at each other, count bodies, and collectively cycle through the five stages of doorbell grief: Denial: This cannot be happening. ALL OF THE PEOPLE ALLOWED TO BE IN THIS HOUSE ARE ALREADY IN THIS HOUSE. Maybe it was the TV. IS THE TV ON? Anger: WHO DOES THIS? WHAT KIND OF BOUNDARYLESS AGGRESSOR RINGS SOMEONE’S DOORBELL IN BROAD DAYLIGHT? Bargaining: Don’t move, don’t breathe—maybe they’ll go away. Depression: Why? Why us? Why anyone? Why is life so hard? Acceptance: Damnit to hell. You—the little one—we volunteer you. Put on some pants, act normal, and answer the door. It’s dramatic, but the door always gets answered. If the kids aren’t home, I’ll even answer it myself. Is this because I remember that adulting requires door answering? Of course not. I answer the door because of the sliver of hope in my heart that if I open the door, there might be a package waiting for me. A package!
Glennon Doyle (Untamed)
ROSE: I been standing with you! I been right here with you, Troy. I got a life, too. I gave eighteen years of my life to stand in the same spot with you. Don't you think I ever wanted other things? Don't you think I had dreams and hopes? What about my life? What about me. Don't you think it ever crossed my mind to want to know other men? That I wanted to lay up somewhere and forget about my responsibilities? That I wanted someone to make me laugh so I could feel good? You not the only one who's got wants and needs. But I held on to you, Troy. I took all my feelings, my wants and needs, my dreams...and I buried them inside you. I planted a seed and watched and prayed over it. I planted myself inside you and waited to bloom. And it didn't take me not eighteen years to find out the soil was hard and rocky and it wasn't never gonna bloom. But I held on to you. I held you tighter. You was my husband. I owed you everything I had. Every part of me I could find to give you. And upstairs in that room...with the darkness falling in on me...I gave everything I had to try and erase the doubt that you wasn't the fines man in the world. And wherever you was going...I wanted to be there with you. Cause you was my husband. Cause that's the only way I was gonna survive as your wife. You always taking about what you give...and what you don't have to give. But you take too. You take...and you don't even know nobody's giving!
August Wilson (Fences (The Century Cycle, #6))
Usually, even a non-Christian knows something about the earth, the heavens, and the other elements of the world, about the motion and orbit of the stars and even their size and relative positions, about the predictable eclipses of the sun and moon, the cycles of the years and the seasons, about the kinds of animals, shrubs, stones, and so forth, and this knowledge he holds to as being certain from reason and experience. Now, it is a disgraceful and dangerous thing for an infidel to hear a Christian, presumably giving the meaning of Holy Scripture, talking nonsense on these topics; and we should take all means to prevent such an embarrassing situation, in which people show up vast ignorance in a Christian and laugh it to scorn. The shame is not so much that an ignorant individual is derided, but that people outside the household of faith think our sacred writers held such opinions, and, to the great loss of those for whose salvation we toil, the writers of our Scripture are criticized and rejected as unlearned men. If they find a Christian mistaken in a field which they themselves know well and hear him maintaining his foolish opinions about our books, how are they going to believe those books in matters concerning the resurrection of the dead, the hope of eternal life, and the kingdom of heaven, when they think their pages are full of falsehoods on facts which they themselves have learnt from experience and the light of reason? Reckless and incompetent expounders of Holy Scripture bring untold trouble and sorrow on their wiser brethren when they are caught in one of their mischievous false opinions and are taken to task by those who are not bound by the authority of our sacred books. For then, to defend their utterly foolish and obviously untrue statements, they will try to call upon Holy Scripture for proof and even recite from memory many passages which they think support their position, although they understand neither what they say nor the things about which they make assertion [quoting 1 Tim 1:7].
Augustine of Hippo (The Literal Meaning of Genesis, Vol 2 (De Genesi ad litteram))
If I'm a bad person, you don't like me Well I guess I'll make my own way It's a circle A mean cycle I can't excite you anymore Where's your gavel? Your jury? What's my offense this time? You're not a judge but if you're gonna judge me Well sentence me to another life Don't wanna hear your sad songs I don't wanna feel your pain When you swear it's all my fault Cause you know we're not the same (no) We're not the same (no) Oh we're not the same Yeah the friends who stuck together We wrote our names in blood But I guess you can't accept that the change is good (hey) It's good (hey) It's good Well you treat me just like another stranger Well it's nice to meet you sir I guess I'll go I best be on my way out You treat me just like another stranger Well it's nice to meet you sir I guess I'll go I best be on my way out Ignorance is your new best friend Ignorance is your new best friend This is the best thing that could've happened Any longer and I wouldn't have made it It's not a war no, it's not a rapture I'm just a person but you can't take it The same tricks that, that once fooled me They won't get you anywhere I'm not the same kid from your memory Well now I can fend for myself Don't wanna hear your sad songs I don't wanna feel your pain When you swear it's all my fault Cause you know we're not the same (no) We're not the same (no) Oh we're not the same Yeah we used to stick together We wrote our names in blood But I guess you can't accept that the change is good (hey) It's good (hey) It's good Well you treat me just like another stranger Well it's nice to meet you sir I guess I'll go I best be on my way out You treat me just like another stranger Well it's nice to meet you sir I guess I'll go I best be on my way out Ignorance is your new best friend Ignorance is your new best friend Ignorance is your new best friend Ignorance is your new best friend Well you treat me just like another stranger Well it's nice to meet you sir I guess I'll go I best be on my way out You treat me just like another stranger Well it's nice to meet you sir I guess I'll go I best be on my way out
Hayley Williams
How many people have I heard claim their children as the greatest accomplishment and comfort of their lives? It's the thing they can always lean on during a metaphysical crisis, or a moment of doubt about their relevancy - If I have done nothing else in this life, then at least I have raised my children well. But what if, either by choice or by reluctant necessity, you end up not participating in this comforting cycle of family and continuity? What if you step out? Where do you sit at the reunion? How do you mark time's passage without the fear that you've just fritted away your time on earth without being relevant? You'll need to find another purpose, another measure by which to judge whether or not you have been a successful human being. I love children, but what if I don't have any? What kind of person does that make me? Virginia Woolf wrote, "Across the broad continent of a woman's life falls the shadow of a sword." On one side of that sword, she said, there lies convention and tradition and order, where "all is correct." But on the other side of that sword, if you're crazy enough to cross it and choose a life that does not follow convention, "all is confusion. Nothing follows a regular course." Her argument was that the crossing of the shadow of that sword may bring a far more interesting existence to a woman, but you can bet it will also be more perilous.
Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love)
I think of two landscapes- one outside the self, the other within. The external landscape is the one we see-not only the line and color of the land and its shading at different times of the day, but also its plants and animals in season, its weather, its geology… If you walk up, say, a dry arroyo in the Sonoran Desert you will feel a mounding and rolling of sand and silt beneath your foot that is distinctive. You will anticipate the crumbling of the sedimentary earth in the arroyo bank as your hand reaches out, and in that tangible evidence you will sense the history of water in the region. Perhaps a black-throated sparrow lands in a paloverde bush… the smell of the creosote bush….all elements of the land, and what I mean by “the landscape.” The second landscape I think of is an interior one, a kind of projection within a person of a part of the exterior landscape. Relationships in the exterior landscape include those that are named and discernible, such as the nitrogen cycle, or a vertical sequence of Ordovician limestone, and others that are uncodified or ineffable, such as winter light falling on a particular kind of granite, or the effect of humidity on the frequency of a blackpoll warbler’s burst of song….the shape and character of these relationships in a person’s thinking, I believe, are deeply influenced by where on this earth one goes, what one touches, the patterns one observes in nature- the intricate history of one’s life in the land, even a life in the city, where wind, the chirp of birds, the line of a falling leaf, are known. These thoughts are arranged, further, according to the thread of one’s moral, intellectual, and spiritual development. The interior landscape responds to the character and subtlety of an exterior landscape; the shape of the individual mind is affected by land as it is by genes. Among the Navajo, the land is thought to exhibit sacred order…each individual undertakes to order his interior landscape according to the exterior landscape. To succeed in this means to achieve a balanced state of mental health…Among the various sung ceremonies of this people-Enemyway, Coyoteway, Uglyway- there is one called Beautyway. It is, in part, a spiritual invocation of the order of the exterior universe, that irreducible, holy complexity that manifests itself as all things changing through time (a Navajo definition of beauty).
Barry Lopez (Crossing Open Ground)