Manage Life Quotes

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And once the storm is over, you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.
Haruki Murakami (Kafka on the Shore)
Really, the combination of the scabs and the ointment looks hideous. I can't help enjoying his distress. "Poor Finnick. Is this the first time in your life you haven't looked pretty?" I say. "It must be. The sensation's completely new. How have you managed it all these years?" he asks. "Just avoid mirrors. You'll forget about it," I say. "Not if I keep looking at you," he says.
Suzanne Collins (Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2))
One always has a better book in one's mind than one can manage to get onto paper.
Michael Cunningham
HUMAN BEINGS MAKE LIFE SO INTERESTING. DO YOU KNOW, THAT IN A UNIVERSE SO FULL OF WONDERS, THEY HAVE MANAGED TO INVENT BOREDOM. (Death)
Terry Pratchett (Hogfather (Discworld, #20; Death, #4))
You will manage to keep a woman in love with you, only for as long as you can keep her in love with the person she becomes when she is with you.
C. JoyBell C.
If you want to conquer the anxiety of life, live in the moment, live in the breath.
Amit Ray (Om Chanting and Meditation)
But life isn't hard to manage when you've nothing to lose.
Ernest Hemingway (A Farewell to Arms)
Never respond to an angry person with a fiery comeback, even if he deserves it...Don't allow his anger to become your anger.
Bohdi Sanders (Warrior Wisdom: Ageless Wisdom for the Modern Warrior)
I must say a word about fear. It is life's only true opponent. Only fear can defeat life. It is a clever, treacherous adversary, how well I know. It has no decency, respects no law or convention, shows no mercy. It goes for your weakest spot, which it finds with unnerving ease. It begins in your mind, always ... so you must fight hard to express it. You must fight hard to shine the light of words upon it. Because if you don't, if your fear becomes a wordless darkness that you avoid, perhaps even manage to forget, you open yourself to further attacks of fear because you never truly fought the opponent who defeated you.
Yann Martel (Life of Pi)
Part of the problem with the word 'disabilities' is that it immediately suggests an inability to see or hear or walk or do other things that many of us take for granted. But what of people who can't feel? Or talk about their feelings? Or manage their feelings in constructive ways? What of people who aren't able to form close and strong relationships? And people who cannot find fulfillment in their lives, or those who have lost hope, who live in disappointment and bitterness and find in life no joy, no love? These, it seems to me, are the real disabilities.
Fred Rogers (The World According to Mister Rogers: Important Things to Remember)
Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those who do not write, compose, or paint can manage to escape the madness, melancholia, the panic and fear which is inherent in a human situation.
Graham Greene (Ways of Escape)
America, my love, you are sunlight falling through trees. You are laughter that breaks through sadness. You are the breeze on a too-war day. You are clarity in the midst of confusion. You are not the world, but you are everything that makes the world good. Without you, my life would still exist, but that's all it would manage to do. You said that to get things right one of us would have to take a leap of faith. I think I've discovered the canyon that must be leaped, and I hope to find you waiting for me on the other side. I love you, America. Yours forever, Maxon
Kiera Cass (The One (The Selection, #3))
Life can't be cured, but it can be managed.
Ned Vizzini (It's Kind of a Funny Story)
I don't get nearly enough credit in life for the things I manage not to say.
Meg Rosoff (How I Live Now)
There is immense power when a group of people with similar interests gets together to work toward the same goals.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
Success comes from the inside out. In order to change what is on the outside, you must first change what is on the inside.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
When money realizes that it is in good hands, it wants to stay and multiply in those hands.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
Where your attention goes, your time goes
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
The more your money works for you, the less you have to work for money.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
Time management is about life management.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
You have to work on the business first before it works for you.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
Money is always eager and ready to work for anyone who is ready to employ it.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
When you work on something that only has the capacity to make you 5 dollars, it does not matter how much harder you work – the most you will make is 5 dollars.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
I finally figured out that not every crisis can be managed. As much as we want to keep ourselves safe, we can't protect ourselves from everything. If we want to embrace life, we also have to embrace chaos.
Susan Elizabeth Phillips (Breathing Room)
I want to live the rest of my life, however long or short, with as much sweetness as I can decently manage, loving all the people I love, and doing as much as I can of the work I still have to do. I am going to write fire until it comes out of my ears, my eyes, my noseholes--everywhere. Until it's every breath I breathe. I'm going to go out like a fucking meteor!
Audre Lorde
I may be the type who manages to grab all the pointless things in life but lets the really important things slip away.
Haruki Murakami (Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman: 24 Stories)
Find meaning. Distinguish melancholy from sadness. Go out for a walk. It doesn’t have to be a romantic walk in the park, spring at its most spectacular moment, flowers and smells and outstanding poetical imagery smoothly transferring you into another world. It doesn’t have to be a walk during which you’ll have multiple life epiphanies and discover meanings no other brain ever managed to encounter. Do not be afraid of spending quality time by yourself. Find meaning or don’t find meaning but 'steal' some time and give it freely and exclusively to your own self. Opt for privacy and solitude. That doesn’t make you antisocial or cause you to reject the rest of the world. But you need to breathe. And you need to be.
Albert Camus (Notebooks 1951-1959)
EMILY: "Does anyone ever realize life while they live it...every, every minute?" STAGE MANAGER: "No. Saints and poets maybe...they do some.
Thornton Wilder (Our Town)
Mr. Bradford," she said. "I'm not going to propose to you." The twinkle in Mr. Bradford's eyes faded. So did his smile. He managed to keep it on his face. It looked painful. "Oh," he said. "Mr. Bradford?" "Yes?" "Would you mind it so very much if...you know...you proposed to me?" The light in Mr. Bradford's eyes jumped to life. He beamed so largely it almost wasn't crooked. "If you want.
Heather Dixon Wallwork (Entwined)
Do the best you can, and don't take life too serious.
Will Rogers
We make messes of our lives, but every now and then, we manage to do something that's exactly right. The challenge is figuring out which is which.
Jodi Picoult (Vanishing Acts)
You are not the world, but you are everything that makes the world good. Without you, my life would still exist, but that's all it would manage to do.
Kiera Cass (The One (The Selection, #3))
Be wild; that is how to clear the river. The river does not flow in polluted, we manage that. The river does not dry up, we block it. If we want to allow it its freedom, we have to allow our ideational lives to be let loose, to stream, letting anything come, initially censoring nothing. That is creative life. It is made up of divine paradox. To create one must be willing to be stone stupid, to sit upon a throne on top of a jackass and spill rubies from one’s mouth. Then the river will flow, then we can stand in the stream of it raining down.
Clarissa Pinkola Estés (Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype)
There was a tale he had read once, long ago, as a small boy: the story of a traveler who had slipped down a cliff, with man-eating tigers above him and a lethal fall below him, who managed to stop his fall halfway down the side of the cliff, holding on for dear life. There was a clump of strawberries beside him, and certain death above him and below. What should he do? went the question. And the reply was, Eat the strawberries. The story had never made sense to him as a boy. It did now.
Neil Gaiman (American Gods (American Gods, #1))
Everything begins with a decision. Then, we have to manage that decision for the rest of your life.
John C. Maxwell
Thirty years ago my older brother, who was ten years old at the time, was trying to get a report written on birds that he'd had three months to write, which was due the next day. We were out at our family cabin in Bolinas, and he was at the kitchen table close to tears, surrounded by binder paper and pencils and unopened books about birds, immobilized by the hugeness of the task ahead. Then my father sat down beside him put his arm around my brother's shoulder, and said, "Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.
Anne Lamott (Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life)
Life's managed, not cured.
Phillip C. McGraw
If you are going to be in business, you must learn about money: how it works, how it flows, and how to put it to work for you.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
It was ironic, really - you want to die because you can't be bothered to go on living - but then you're expected to get all energetic and move furniture and stand on chairs and hoist ropes and do complicated knots and attach things to other things and kick stools from under you and mess around with hot baths and razor blades and extension cords and electrical appliances and weedkiller. Suicide was a complicated, demanding business, often involving visits to hardware shops. And if you've managed to drag yourself from the bed and go down the road to the garden center or the drug store, by then the worst is over. At that point you might as well just go to work.
Marian Keyes (Lucy Sullivan Is Getting Married)
He recognized her despite the uproar, through his tears of unrepeatable sorrow at dying without her, and he looked at her for the last and final time with eyes more luminous, more grief-stricken, more grateful than she had ever seen them in half a century of a shared life, and he managed to say to her with his last breath: “Only God knows how much I loved you
Gabriel García Márquez (Love in the Time of Cholera)
Once upon a time in the dead of winter in the Dakota Territory, Theodore Roosevelt took off in a makeshift boat down the Little Missouri River in pursuit of a couple of thieves who had stolen his prized rowboat. After several days on the river, he caught up and got the draw on them with his trusty Winchester, at which point they surrendered. Then Roosevelt set off in a borrowed wagon to haul the thieves cross-country to justice. They headed across the snow-covered wastes of the Badlands to the railhead at Dickinson, and Roosevelt walked the whole way, the entire 40 miles. It was an astonishing feat, what might be called a defining moment in Roosevelt’s eventful life. But what makes it especially memorable is that during that time, he managed to read all of Anna Karenina. I often think of that when I hear people say they haven’t time to read.
David McCullough
Searching is half the fun: life is much more manageable when thought of as a scavenger hunt as opposed to a surprise party.
Jimmy Buffett
In the games of queens and kings, we leave our dreams at the door and we make do with what we have. Sometimes if we’re fortunate, we still manage to have a good life.
Melina Marchetta (Quintana of Charyn (Lumatere Chronicles, #3))
And you are worth the time it takes to take the time to get to know you. We've managed to muttle through the awkward stage of i like you and you like me, but when we both finally said 'yes' life became a multiple choice test, not knowing anything we became each others best guess. and, holding your hand is less like exploration and more like discovery. lady, i don't have to study you to be sure. you're the choice i made before i knew what the other choices were
Shane L. Koyczan
Your comfort zone is a place where you keep yourself in a self-illusion and nothing can grow there but your potentiality can grow only when you can think and grow out of that zone.
Rashedur Ryan Rahman
We have no future because our present is too volatile. We have only risk management. The spinning of the given moment's scenarios. Pattern recognition.
William Gibson (Pattern Recognition (Blue Ant, #1))
Poor Finnick. Is this the first time in your life you haven't looked pretty?" "It must be. The sensation's completely new. How have you managed it all these years?
Suzanne Collins (Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2))
I am asking you to marry me because I love you,” he said, “because I cannot imagine living my life without you. I want to see your face in the morning, and then at night, and a hundred times in between. I want to grow old with you, I want to laugh with you, and I want to sigh to my friends about how managing you are, all the while secretly knowing I am the luckiest man in town.” “What?” she demanded. He shrugged. “A man’s got to keep up appearances. I’ll be universally detested if everyone realizes how perfect you are.
Julia Quinn (It's in His Kiss (Bridgertons, #7))
Time is the most valuable coin in your life. You and you alone will determine how that coin will be spent. Be careful that you do not let other people spend it for you.
Carl Sandburg
Stop trying to protect, to rescue, to judge, to manage the lives around you . . . remember that the lives of others are not your business. They are their business. They are God’s business . . . even your own life is not your business. It also is God’s business. Leave it to God. It is an astonishing thought. It can become a life-transforming thought . . . unclench the fists of your spirit and take it easy . . . What deadens us most to God’s presence within us, I think, is the inner dialogue that we are continuously engaged in with ourselves, the endless chatter of human thought. I suspect that there is nothing more crucial to true spiritual comfort . . . than being able from time to time to stop that chatter . . .
Frederick Buechner (Telling Secrets)
Life was not easy, nor was it happy, but she did not expect life to be easy, and, if it was not happy, that was woman's lot. It was a man's world, and she accepted it as such. The man owned the property, and the woman managed it. The man took credit for the management, and the woman praised his cleverness. The man roared like a bull when a splinter was in his finger, and the woman muffled the moans of childbirth, lest she disturb him. Men were rough of speech and often drunk. Women ignored the lapses of speech and put the drunkards to bed without bitter words. Men were rude and outspoken, women were always kind, gracious and forgiving.
Margaret Mitchell (Gone with the Wind)
The first lesson to learn is to resign oneself to the little difficulties in life, not to hit out at everything one comes up against. If one were able to manage this one would not need to cultivate great power; even one's presence would be healing.
Hazrat Inayat Khan
Must manage your thought life daily and then you can manage your life.
John C. Maxwell
He who every morning plans the transactions of that day and follows that plan carries a thread that will guide him through the labyrinth of the most busy life.
Victor Hugo
Poor Finnick. Is this the first time in your life you haven't looked pretty?" I say. "It must be. The sensation is completely new. How have you managed it all these years?" he asks. "Just avoid mirrors. You'll forget about it," I say.
Suzanne Collins (Mockingjay (The Hunger Games, #3))
Always strive to aim for the highest peak of the goals in life you have set, this way if you manage to reach even half way toward a goal, landing in the middle is not such a bad place to end up.
Victoria Addino
Life is not a straight line leading from one blessing to the next and then finally to heaven. Life is a winding and troubled road. Switchback after switchback. And the point of biblical stories like Joseph and Job and Esther and Ruth is to help us feel in our bones (not just know in our heads) that God is for us in all these strange turns. God is not just showing up after the trouble and cleaning it up. He is plotting the course and managing the troubles with far-reaching purposes for our good and for the glory of Jesus Christ.
John Piper (A Sweet and Bitter Providence: Sex, Race, and the Sovereignty of God)
Dimitri's voice snapped my attention back to him. "That's Adrian Ivashkov." He said the name the same way everyone else did. "Yeah, I know." "This is the second time I've seen you with him." "Yeah," I replied glibly. "We hang out sometimes." Dimitri arched an eyebrow, then jerked his head back toward where we'd come from. "You hang out in his room a lot?" Several retorts popped into my head, and then a golden one took precedence. "What happens between him and me is none of your business." I managed a tone very similar to the one he'd used on me when making a similar comment about him and Tasha. "Actually, as long as you're at the Academy, what you do is my business." "Not my personal life. You don't have any say in that.
Richelle Mead (Frostbite (Vampire Academy, #2))
Would you like me to drive so you can manage your social life?” I asked. It came out much snippier than I’d intended, but he was oblivious to my tone, still looking at his newest message. “No, no, I’m fine.” “We’d better not get in an accident because you’re busy sexting and driving,” I said. He burst out laughing
Wendy Higgins
Too often, we miss out on opportunities in this life because we were too busy waiting for them to fall into our lap that we missed them tapping on our shoulder.
Daniel Willey
It struck him that how you spent Christmas was a message to the world about where you were in life, some indication of how deep a hole you had managed to burrow for yourself
Nick Hornby (About a Boy)
The roller-coaster is my life; life is a fast, dizzying game; life is a parachute jump; it’s taking chances, falling over and getting up again; it’s mountaineering; it’s wanting to get to the very top of yourself and feeling angry and dissatisfied when you don’t manage it
Paulo Coelho (Eleven Minutes)
Hello' said a vague and dreamy voice from behind them. Harry looked up: Luna Lovegood had drifted over from the Ravenclaw table. Many people were staring at her and few people openly laughing and pointing; she had managed to procure a hat shaped like a life-size lion's head, which was perched precariously on her head. 'I'm supporting Gryffindor' said Luna, pointing unnecessarily at her hat. "Look what it does...' She reached up and tapped the hat with her wand. It opened its mouth wide and gave an extremely realistic roar that made everyone in the vicinity jump. 'It's good, isn't it?' said Luna happily. 'I wanted to have it chewing up a serpent to represent Slytherin, you know, but there wasn't time. Anyway...good luck, Ronald!
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter, #5))
Convince yourself everyday that you are worthy of a good life. Let go of stress, breathe. Stay positive, all is well.
Germany Kent
...He kissed me again, farther up my neck, and I pushed him back against the wall. My mind searched for the logical thought, a rational life raft before I drowned in wanting to hiss him. I managed, "We've only met a few days ago. We don't know each other." Luke released me. "How long does it take to know someone?" I didn't know. "A month? A few months?" It sounded stupid to quantify it, especially when I didn't want to believe my own reasoning. But I couldn't just go kissing someone I knew nothing about-- it went against everything I'd ever been told. So why was it so hard to say no? He took my fingers, playing with them in between his own. "I'll wait." He looked so good in the half-light under the trees, his light eyes nearly glowing against his shadowed skin. It was useless. "I don't want you to." I whispered the words, and before I'd even finished saying them, his mouth was on mine and I was melting under his lips.
Maggie Stiefvater (Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception (Books of Faerie, #1))
If we don’t manage to connect the dots anymore and the power of our imagination is creaking at the seams, in a world of withering expectations, we have to rewrite the script of our life. ("Into a new life")
Erik Pevernagie
What is society but an individual? [...] The ocean is not society; it is individuals. This was how I managed to gain a modicum of freedom from my terror at the illusion of the ocean called the world.
Osamu Dazai (No Longer Human)
Defeat is for the valiant. Only they will know the honour of losing and the joy of winning I am not here to tell you that defeat is a part of life: we all know that. Only the defeated know Love. Because it is in the realm of love that we fight our first battles – and generally lose. I am here to tell you that there are people who have never been defeated. They are the ones who never fought. They managed to avoid scars, humiliations, feelings of helplessness, as well as those moments when even warriors doubt the existence of God.’’ Manuscript Found In Accra – Paulo Coelho
Paulo Coelho (Manuscript Found in Accra)
Live your life in such a way that you'll be remembered for your kindness, compassion, fairness, character, benevolence, and a force for good who had much respect for life, in general.
Germany Kent
Humor can make a serious difference. In the workplace, at home, in all areas of life – looking for a reason to laugh is necessary. A sense of humor helps us to get through the dull times, cope with the difficult times, enjoy the good times and manage the scary times.
Steve Goodier
When you are just EXISTING, life happens to you… and you manage; when you are truly LIVING, you happen to life… and you lead.
Steve Maraboli (Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience)
Immature people falling in love destroy each other’s freedom, create a bondage, make a prison. Mature persons in love help each other to be free; they help each other to destroy all sorts of bondages. And when love flows with freedom there is beauty. When love flows with dependence there is ugliness. A mature person does not fall in love, he or she rises in love. Only immature people fall; they stumble and fall down in love. Somehow they were managing and standing. Now they cannot manage and they cannot stand. They were always ready to fall on the ground and to creep. They don’t have the backbone, the spine; they don’t have the integrity to stand alone. A mature person has the integrity to stand alone. And when a mature person gives love, he or she gives without any strings attached to it. When two mature persons are in love, one of the great paradoxes of life happens, one of the most beautiful phenomena: they are together and yet tremendously alone. They are together so much that they are almost one. Two mature persons in love help each other to become more free. There is no politics involved, no diplomacy, no effort to dominate. Only freedom and love.
Osho
She longed for porch friendship, for the sticky, hot sensation of familiar female legs thrown over hers in companionship. She pined for the girliness of it all, the unplanned, improvisational laziness. She wanted to soak the words 'time management' out of her lexicon. She wanted to hand over, to yield, to let herself float down the unchartered beautiful fertile musky swamp of life, where creativity and eroticism and deep intelligence dwell.
Rebecca Wells (Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood)
<…>"You're part-goof all class. Never walked in a room, any room, with a woman on my arm, any woman, who's got your looks, your style, the kinda beauty you got and the light that shines from you. So I don't get it. I don't get how a woman leads a life full of shit and comes out of it bein' part-goof and all class. That shit's impossible but there you fuckin' are. Part-goof, all class." I felt my breath coming fast but managed to whisper, "I'm not part-goof." "You're right. I was bein' nice. You're a total goof." "Am not" "Babe, you call me 'hubby'," he pointed out but my breath came faster because he called me "babe" again. "You are my hubby." "No one says hubby," he told me. "I do," I told him. "All right, I'll rephrase. No one but a goof says hubby."….<…>
Kristen Ashley (Lady Luck (Colorado Mountain, #3))
She hoped that Tin Win would learn what she had learned over the years: that there are wounds time does not heal, though it can reduce them to a manageable size.
Jan-Philipp Sendker (The Art of Hearing Heartbeats)
Life, any life, is very short. But if you've managed to be happy for at least an instant, it will have been worth living.
Antonio Iturbe (La bibliotecaria de Auschwitz)
Life can be a misunderstanding, if we are ignorant of the right language or don’t try to learn it. « If lions could speak, we would not understand them. » says Ludwig Wittgenstein. If we make an effort, however, we could manage to understand. ( “ Life was a misunderstanding » )
Erik Pevernagie
No' is golden. 'No' is the kind of power the good witch wields. It's the way whole, healthy, emotionally evolved people manage to have relationships with jackasses while limiting the amount of jackass in their lives.
Cheryl Strayed (Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar)
People with a grudge against the world are always dangerous. They seem to think life owes them something. I've known many an invalid who has suffered worse and been cut off from life much more . . . and they've managed to lead happy contented lives. It's what's in yourself that makes you happy or unhappy.
Agatha Christie (A Murder Is Announced (Miss Marple, #4))
Life is more manageable when thought of as a scavenger hunt as opposed to a surprise party.
Jimmy Buffett
Dorian gave a smug grin. “My mate thinks I'm the most gorgeous leopard she ever saw.” “Show us the footage before your head explodes,” Lucas muttered, but his own cat was grinning to see Dorian so happy. The sentinel had been latent most of his life, unable to shift into leopard form. Now that he could, he did so at every opportunity. “Have you managed to catch a rabbit yet?” A single eloquent finger. “Fuck you.” Lucas snickered. “What about trying for a turtle?” Dorian lunged out of the chair and went for Lucas’s throat.
Nalini Singh (Bonds of Justice (Psy-Changeling, #8))
Even though life may have moved wearily and painfully through such a person, they have still managed not to let it corrode their soul. In such a face a lovely luminosity shines out into the world. It casts a tender light that radiates a sense of wholeness and wholesomeness.
John O'Donohue (Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom)
People who violate your boundaries are thieves. They steal time that doesn’t belong to them.
Elizabeth Grace Saunders (The 3 Secrets to Effective Time Investment: Achieve More Success with Less Stress: Foreword by Cal Newport, Author of So Good They Can't Ignore You)
One day, she’d find a way to live her life to the fullest. She was sure of it. She just had no idea how she would manage it.
Ilona Andrews (On the Edge (The Edge, #1))
Whenever I felt like that, I would have a chat with my own Fat Mary. She was like the sweet fresh air after the rain. She brought me newness, clarity, and relief. She managed to get in touch with and resurrect the free spirit deep inside me. Being one with the spirit allowed me to soar above my everyday reality. I marveled at the beauty of all life and savored the power and possibilities of my imagination.
Maria Nhambu (Africa's Child (Dancing Soul Trilogy, #1))
As people strengthened their willpower muscles in one part of their lives—in the gym, or a money management program—that strength spilled over into what they ate or how hard they worked. Once willpower became stronger, it touched everything.
Charles Duhigg (The Power Of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life And Business)
Life is a weird thing. We spend all our time trying to manage different aspects of it, yet we are still largely shaped by things that happen beyond our control.
Fredrik Backman (Us Against You (Beartown, #2))
Ranger is an unusual name," she managed. "Is it a nickname?" It's a street name," Ranger said. "I was a Ranger in the army." I heard about them Rangers on TV," Grandma said. "I heard they get dogs pregnant." My father's mouth dropped open and a piece of ham fell out. My mother froze, her fork poised in midair. That's sort of a joke," I told Grandma. "Rangers don't get dogs pregnant in real life." I looked at Ranger for corroboration and got another smile.
Janet Evanovich (Three to Get Deadly (Stephanie Plum, #3))
Now what else is the whole life of mortals, but a sort of comedy in which the various actors, disguised by various costumes and masks, walk on and play each ones part until the manager walks them off the stage?
Erasmus
How do you manage it, she said, at your age? I told her I'd been saving up for her all my life.
Samuel Beckett (Krapp's Last Tape & Embers)
Humanity does not ask us to be happy. It merely asks us to be brilliant on its behalf. Survival first, and then happiness as we can manage it.... Take what pleasure you can in the interstices of your work, but your work is first, learning first, winning is everything because without it there is nothing.
Orson Scott Card (Ender's Game (Ender's Saga, #1))
Marginalia Sometimes the notes are ferocious, skirmishes against the author raging along the borders of every page in tiny black script. If I could just get my hands on you, Kierkegaard, or Conor Cruise O'Brien, they seem to say, I would bolt the door and beat some logic into your head. Other comments are more offhand, dismissive - Nonsense." "Please!" "HA!!" - that kind of thing. I remember once looking up from my reading, my thumb as a bookmark, trying to imagine what the person must look like who wrote "Don't be a ninny" alongside a paragraph in The Life of Emily Dickinson. Students are more modest needing to leave only their splayed footprints along the shore of the page. One scrawls "Metaphor" next to a stanza of Eliot's. Another notes the presence of "Irony" fifty times outside the paragraphs of A Modest Proposal. Or they are fans who cheer from the empty bleachers, Hands cupped around their mouths. Absolutely," they shout to Duns Scotus and James Baldwin. Yes." "Bull's-eye." "My man!" Check marks, asterisks, and exclamation points rain down along the sidelines. And if you have managed to graduate from college without ever having written "Man vs. Nature" in a margin, perhaps now is the time to take one step forward. We have all seized the white perimeter as our own and reached for a pen if only to show we did not just laze in an armchair turning pages; we pressed a thought into the wayside, planted an impression along the verge. Even Irish monks in their cold scriptoria jotted along the borders of the Gospels brief asides about the pains of copying, a bird singing near their window, or the sunlight that illuminated their page- anonymous men catching a ride into the future on a vessel more lasting than themselves. And you have not read Joshua Reynolds, they say, until you have read him enwreathed with Blake's furious scribbling. Yet the one I think of most often, the one that dangles from me like a locket, was written in the copy of Catcher in the Rye I borrowed from the local library one slow, hot summer. I was just beginning high school then, reading books on a davenport in my parents' living room, and I cannot tell you how vastly my loneliness was deepened, how poignant and amplified the world before me seemed, when I found on one page A few greasy looking smears and next to them, written in soft pencil- by a beautiful girl, I could tell, whom I would never meet- Pardon the egg salad stains, but I'm in love.
Billy Collins (Picnic, Lightning)
Life is such a strange thing, she thinks, once she has stopped laughing. Even after certain things have happened to them, no matter how awful the experience, people still go on eating and drinking, going to the toilet and washing themselves - living, in other words. And sometimes they even laugh out loud. And they probably have these same thoughts, too, and when they do it must make them cheerlessly recall all the sadness they'd briefly managed to forget.
Han Kang (The Vegetarian)
Concentrate every minute like a Roman— like a man— on doing what’s in front of you with precise and genuine seriousness, tenderly, willingly, with justice. And on freeing yourself from all other distractions. Yes, you can— if you do everything as if it were the last thing you were doing in your life, and stop being aimless, stop letting your emotions override what your mind tells you, stop being hypocritical, self-centered , irritable. You see how few things you have to do to live a satisfying and reverent life? If you can manage this, that’s all even the gods can ask of you.
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations)
That kind of tenderness couldn't be permitted to last. You only got a taste, enough to know what perfection meant, and then you paid for it the rest of your life. Like the guy chained to a rock, who stole fire. The gods made an eagle eat his liver for all eternity. You paid for every second of beauty you managed to steal.
Janet Fitch (Paint it Black)
As long as we're young, we manage to find excuses for the stoniest indifference, the most blatant caddishness, we put them down to emotional eccentricity or some sort of romantic inexperience. But later on, when life shows us how much cunning, cruelty, and malice are required just to keep the body at ninety-eight point six, we catch on, we know the scene, we begin to understand how much swinishness it takes to make up a past. Just take a close look at yourself and the degree of rottenness you've come to. There's no mystery about it, no more room for fairy tales; if you've lived this long, it's because you've squashed any poetry you had in you.
Louis-Ferdinand Céline
The quality of your life depends on how well you manage your body, your mind, your emotion, your situations, your home, your communities, nations, your life in general and the world.
Sadhguru (Inner Management: In the Presence of the Master)
Never be too angry beyond repairs. Anger is nothing good to be part of your tributes. Are you angry with someone? The sun is sinking, just drop it now.
Israelmore Ayivor
We are here because one odd group of fishes had a peculiar fin anatomy that could transform into legs for terrestrial creatures; because the earth never froze entirely during an ice age; because a small and tenuous species, arising in Africa a quarter of a million years ago, has managed, so far, to survive by hook and by crook. We may yearn for a ‘higher answer’– but none exists
Stephen Jay Gould
Wealth File 1. Rich people believe "I create my life." Poor people believe "Life happens to me." 2. Rich people play the money game to win. Poor people play the money game to not lose. 3. Rich people are committed to being rich. Poor people want to be rich. 4. Rich people think big. Poor people think small. 5. Rich people focus on opportunities. Poor people focus on obstacles. 6. Rich people admire other rich and successful people. Poor people resent rich and successful people. 7. Rich people associate with positive, successful people. Poor people associate with negative or unsuccessful people. 8. Rich people are willing to promote themselves and their value. Poor people think negatively about selling and promotion. 9. Rich people are bigger than their problems. Poor people are smaller than their problems. 10. Rich people are excellent receivers. Poor people are poor receivers. 11. Rich people choose to get paid based on results. Poor people choose to get paid based on time. 12. Rich people think "both". Poor people think "either/or". 13. Rich people focus on their net worth. Poor people focus on their working income. 14. Rich people manage their money well. Poor people mismanage their money well. 15. Rich people have their money work hard for them. Poor people work hard for their money. 16. Rich people act in spite of fear. Poor people let fear stop them. 17. Rich people constantly learn and grow. Poor people think they already know.
T. Harv Eker (Secrets of the Millionaire Mind: Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth)
Without the vision of a goal, a man cannot manage his own life, much less the lives of others.
Jack Weatherford (Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World)
All my life I've wanted to be the kid who gets to cross over into the magical kingdom. I devoured those books by C.S. Lewis and William Dunthorn, Ellen Wentworth, Susan Cooper, and Alan Garner. When I could get them from the library, I read them out of order as I found them, and then in order, and then reread them all again, many times over. Because even when I was a child I knew it wasn't simply escape that lay on the far side of the borders of fairyland. Instinctively I knew crossing over would mean more than fleeing the constant terror and shame that was mine at that time of my life. There was a knowledge – an understanding hidden in the marrow of my bones that only I can access ― telling me that by crossing over, I'd be coming home. That's the reason I’ve yearned so desperately to experience the wonder, the mystery, the beauty of that world beyond the World As It Is. It's because I know that somewhere across the border there's a place for me. A place of safety and strength and learning, where I can become who I'm supposed to be. I've tried forever to be that person here, but whatever I manage to accomplish in the World As It Is only seems to be an echo of what I could be in that other place that lies hidden somewhere beyond the borders.
Charles de Lint
[She] knew there were women who worked successfully out of the home. They ran businesses, created empires and managed to raise happy, healthy, well-adjusted children who went on to graduate magna cum laude from Harvard or became world-renowned concert pianists. Possibly both. These women accomplished all this while cooking gourmet meals, furnishing their homes with Italian antiques, giving clever, intelligent interviews with Money magazine and People, and maintaining a brilliant marriage with an active enviable sex life and never tipping the scale at an ounce over their ideal weight... She knew those women were out there. If she'd had a gun, she'd have hunted every last one of them down and shot them like rabid dogs for the good of womankind.
Nora Roberts (Birthright)
Hodge says he's on his way and he hopes you can both manage to cling to your flickering sparks of life until he gets here," she told Simon and Jace. "Or something like that." "I wish he'd hurry," Jace said crossly. He was sitting up in bed against a pair of fluffed white pillows, still wearing his filthy clothes. "Why? Does it hurt?" Clary asked. "No. I have a high pain threshold. In fact, it's less of a threshold and more of a large and tastefully decorated foyer. But I do get easily bored." He squinted at her. "Do you remember back at the hotel when you promised that if we lived, you'd get dressed up in a nurse's outfit and give me a sponge bath?" "Actually, I think you misheard," Clary said. "It was Simon who promised you the sponge bath." Jace looked involuntarily over at Simon, who smiled at him widely. "As soon as I'm back on my feet, handsome.
Cassandra Clare (City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1))
We've never managed, either one of us, to get all the way into life. We're hanging on to the outside for all we're worth, convinced we're going to fall off at the next bump.
Paul Bowles (The Sheltering Sky)
I am fascinated at how much time we spend doing things that we don’t enjoy.
Daniel Willey
Life is indeed colourful. We can feel in the pink one day, with our bank balances comfortably in the black, and the grass seemingly no greener on the other side of the fence. Then out of the blue, something tiresome happens that makes us see red, turn ashen white, even purple with rage. Maybe controlling our varying emotions is just 'colour management' by another name.
Alex Morritt (Impromptu Scribe)
I'm going to be here until I'm cured?" "Life is not cured, Mr. Gilner. Life is managed".
Ned Vizzini (It's Kind of a Funny Story)
Don't interpret anything too much. This is time waster number 1.
Dee Dee Artner
No matter how awful the rest of my life is, my hair still manages to look good.
Karen M. McManus (One of Us Is Lying (One of Us is Lying, #1))
We believe that we invent symbols. The truth is that they invent us; we are their creatures, shaped by their hard, defining edges. When soldiers take their oath they are given a coin, an asimi stamped with the profile of the Autarch. Their acceptance of that coin is their acceptance of the special duties and burdens of military life—they are soldiers from that moment, though they may know nothing of the management of arms. I did not know that then, but it is a profound mistake to believe that we must know of such things to be influenced by them, and in fact to believe so is to believe in the most debased and superstitious kind of magic. The would-be sorcerer alone has faith in the efficacy of pure knowledge; rational people know that things act of themselves or not at all.
Gene Wolfe (Shadow & Claw (The Book of the New Sun #1-2))
sufferers of depression, who can elect to keep their feelings private, experience chronic, unremitting emotional alienation. Each moment spent “passing” as normal deepens the sense of disconnection generated by depression in the first instance. In this regard, depression stands as a nearly pure case of impression-management. For depressed individuals, the social requirement to “put on a happy face” requires subjugation of an especially intense inner experience. Yet, nearly unbelievably, many severely depressed people “pull off the act” for long periods of time. The price of the performance is to further exacerbate a life condition that already seems impossibly painful
David Karp
After tail spinning into chaos, one needs a bolt-hole, to resource and ‘challenge’ oneself, break free from the haunting constrictions, squirrel back into bouncy and buoyant surroundings and enjoy the many laugh-out-loud-moments of the day. As soon as one manages to wobble out of one’s shell, everything may click into place again and the radiance and glare of the bright side of life might show again. ("Imbroglio")
Erik Pevernagie
We are so used to the notion of our own inevitability as life’s dominant species that it is hard to grasp that we are here only because of timely extraterrestrial bangs and other random flukes. The one thing we have in common with all other living things is that for nearly four billion years our ancestors have managed to slip through a series of closing doors every time we needed them to.
Bill Bryson (A Short History of Nearly Everything)
It is by not always thinking of yourself, if you can manage it, that you might somehow be happy. Until you can make room in your life for someone as important to you as yourself, you will always be searching and lost....
Richard Bach
Yet the paradox is that scientific methodology is the product of human hands and thus cannot reach some permanent truth. We build scientific theories to organize and manipulate the world, to reduce phenomena into manageable units. Science is based on reproducibility and manufactured objectivity. As strong as that makes its ability to generate claims about matter and energy, it also makes scientific knowledge inapplicable to the existential, visceral nature of human life, which is unique and subjective and unpredictable. Science may provide the most useful way to organize empirical, reproducible data, but its power to do so is predicated on its inability to grasp the most central aspects of human life: hope, fear, love, hate, beauty, envy, honor, weakness, striving, suffering, virtue.
Paul Kalanithi (When Breath Becomes Air)
Contrary to popular opinion, leadership is not a reserved position for a particular group of people who were elected or appointed, ordained or enthroned. Leadership is self-made, self-retained, self-inculcated and then exposed through a faithful, sincere and examplary life.
Israelmore Ayivor
Christian does a great job helping an aspiring writer get inspired to write and finish their book. It’s easy to read and understand, and provides encouragement and specific guidance, without being too harsh or detailed on fiction writing only. If you are struggling with how to put your thoughts onto paper, give this a read and establish a rhythm for your writing. Christian’s success at completing over 21 published manuscripts while leading a busy life are testament in if there is a will, there is a way. And it provides some good humor throughout.” Rachel Braynin, Sr Program Manager at Lulu Publishing
Christian Warren Freed (So...You Want to Write a Book?)
Reconnect to what makes you happy and brings you Joy. If there is something that used to make you happy which you have stopped doing, do it again. Seek to find deeper meaning and significance rather than living on the surface.
Susan C. Young
Thank God for men who manage to hold from afar, wipe tears away with tender words and dish out the life force that is hope. She has never felt so alone but out there, across an ocean, and in a foreign land, there is a man who loves her and would lay down his life just so she could feel the light once again.
Donna Lynn Hope
All right, I've been thinking, when life gives you lemons, don't make lemonade! Make life take the lemons back! Get mad! I don't want your damn lemons! What am I supposed to do with these? Demand to see life's manager! Make life rue the day it thought it could give Cave Johnson lemons! Do you know who I am? I'm the man whose gonna burn your house down - with the lemons!
Portal 2
I believe in energies. Good energy has served me well. Being fair with others, compassionate towards them, remaining humble, and making a difference to someone are just a few of the things that I have seen create good energy. Beautiful things. Human things. I do my best to surround myself with these types of things, to generate an atmosphere thick with such energy. It has kept me safe in many situations. I have taken risks in the past, and managed to avoid harm by the protection of the good energy I have created around me. I believe that ugliness creates more ugliness. And no matter how touched by ugliness you are, you do not have to give in to it and start spreading it beyond yourself. I have seen this sickness and what it does to a person, and those around them.
Ashly Lorenzana
There will be times in your life when things simply have to be replaced because they are tired, broken, worn out, harmful, outdated, or irrelevant. Take an inventory of the things that no longer serve your best and highest good so you can replace them with things which do.
Susan C. Young
Being in love, she concluded, is simply the presentation of our pasts to another individual, mostly packages so unwieldy that we can no longer manage the loosened strings alone. Looking for love is like asking for a new point of departure, she thought, another chance in life.
Zelda Fitzgerald (Save Me the Waltz)
...my father, [was] a mid-level phonecompany manager who treated my mother at best like an incompetent employee. At worst? He never beat her, but his pure, inarticulate fury would fill the house for days, weeks, at a time, making the air humid, hard to breathe, my father stalking around with his lower jaw jutting out, giving him the look of a wounded, vengeful boxer, grinding his teeth so loud you could hear it across the room ... I'm sure he told himself: 'I never hit her'. I'm sure because of this technicality he never saw himself as an abuser. But he turned our family life into an endless road trip with bad directions and a rage-clenched driver, a vacation that never got a chance to be fun.
Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl)
…. by the time they have reached the middle of their life’s journey, few people remember how they have managed to arrive at themselves, at their amusements, their point of view, their wife, character, occupation and successes, but they cannot help feeling that not much is likely to change anymore. It might even be asserted that they have been cheated, for one can nowhere discover any sufficient reason for everything’s coming about as it has. It might just have well as turned out differently. The events of people’s lives have, after all, only to the last degree originated in them, having generally depended on all sorts of circumstances such as the moods, the life or death of quite different people, and have, as it were, only at the given point of time come hurrying towards them
Robert Musil (The Man Without Qualities: Volume I (1/2))
Maybe I owe you something too, human," she said, drawing her pistol. Butler almost reacted, but decided to give Holly the benefit of the doubt. Captain Short plucked a gold coin from her belt, flicking it fifty feet into the moonlit sky. With one fluid movement, she brought her weapon up and loosed a single blast. The coin rose another fifty feet, then spun earthward. Artemis somehow managed to snatch it from the air. The first cool movement of his young life. "Nice shot," he said. The previously solid disk now had a tiny hole in the center. Holly held out her hand, revealing the still raw scar on her finger. "If it wasn't for you, I would have missed altogether. No mech-digit can replicate that kind of accuracy. So, thank you too, I suppose." Artemis held out the coin. "No," said Holly. "You keep it, to remind you." "To remind me?" Holly stared at him frankly. "To remind you that deep beneath the layers of deviousness, you have a spark of decency. Perhaps you could blow on that spark occasionally." Artemis closed his fingers around the coin. It was warm against his palm. "Yes, perhaps.
Eoin Colfer (The Arctic Incident (Artemis Fowl, #2))
Father, I declare that my decisions today will change the trajectory of my future and bring it into alignment with Your plans for me. Wherever I place my feet, I walk in Your authority and expand my territory for Your name’s sake. Increase my productivity and efficiency and give me the anointing of Solomon to wisely manage my resources today. In Jesus's name, amen.
Cindy Trimm (Commanding Your Morning Daily Devotional: Unleash God's Power in Your Life--Every Day of the Year)
If one really has a feeling of contribution, one will no longer have any need for recognition from others. Because one will already have the real awareness that “I am of use to someone,” without needing to go out of one’s way to be acknowledged by others. In other words, a person who is obsessed with the desire for recognition does not have any community feeling yet, and has not managed to engage in self-acceptance, confidence in others, or contribution to others.
Ichiro Kishimi (The Courage to Be Disliked: How to Free Yourself, Change Your Life, and Achieve Real Happiness)
But if renting all those movies had taught me anything more than how to lose myself in them, it was that you only actually have perfectly profound little moments like that in real life if you recognize them yourself, do all the fancy shot work and editing in your head, usually in the very seconds that whatever is happening is happening. And even if you do manage to do so, just about never does anyone else you’re with at the time experience that exact same kind of moment, and it’s impossible to explain it as it’s happening, and then the moment is over.
Emily M. Danforth (The Miseducation of Cameron Post)
He does manage the bookstore, which is currently my favorite place on earth." Her eyes glazed over. "All those books. If I married him, I could probably work there the rest of my life. Nothing would make me happier." "What about love?" Ve asked. "Oh," Harper said solemnly. "I love books.
Heather Blake (It Takes a Witch (A Wishcraft Mystery, #1))
He had come to that moment in his age when there occurred to him, with increasing intensity, a question of such overwhelming simplicity that he had no means to face it. He found himself wondering if his life were worth the living; if it had ever been. It was a question, he suspected, that came to all men at one time or another; he wondered if it came to them with such impersonal force as it came to him. The question brought with it a sadness, but it was a general sadness which (he thought) had little to do with himself or with his particular fate; he was not even sure that the question sprang from the most immediate and obvious causes, from what his own life had become. It came, he believed, from the accretion of his years, from the density of accident and circumstance, and from what he had come to understand of them. He took a grim and ironic pleasure from the possibility that what little learning he had managed to acquire had led him to this knowledge: that in the long run all things, even the learning that let him know this, were futile and empty, and at last diminished into a nothingness they did not alter.
John Williams (Stoner)
I have seen many cases like N. during the five years I've been in practice. I sometimes picture these unfortunates as men and women being pecked to death by predatory birds. The birds are invisible - at least until a psychiatrist who is good, or lucky, or both, sprays them with his version of Luminol and shines the right light on them - but they are nevertheless very real. The wonder is that so many OCDs manage to live productive lives, just the same. They work, they eat (often not enough or too much, it's true), they go to movies, they make love to their girlfriends and boyfriends, their wives and husbands . . . and all the time those birds are there, clinging to them and pecking away little bits of flesh.
Stephen King (Just After Sunset)
I love you. If you remember nothing else for the rest of your life, if you fall and hit your head and can’t remember my name, if you get so sick you’re unrecognizable, if you hate me, if you’re on your deathbed and can’t manage to even lift a finger — remember this. I. Love. You. Always. Forever. Eternally. Is that kind of love something you can handle, Saylor?
Rachel Van Dyken (Toxic (Ruin, #2))
People that hold onto hate for so long do so because they want to avoid dealing with their pain. They falsely believe if they forgive they are letting their enemy believe they are a doormat. What they don’t understand is hatred can’t be isolated or turned off. It manifests in their health, choices and belief systems. Their values and religious beliefs make adjustments to justify their negative emotions. Not unlike malware infesting a hard drive, their spirit slowly becomes corrupted and they make choices that don’t make logical sense to others. Hatred left unaddressed will crash a person’s spirit. The only thing he or she can do is to reboot, by fixing him or herself, not others. This might require installing a firewall of boundaries or parental controls on their emotions. Regardless of the approach, we are all connected on this "network of life" and each of us is responsible for cleaning up our spiritual registry.
Shannon L. Alder
My spirits rose as I went deeper; into the forest; but I could not regain my former elasticity of mind. I found cheerfulness to be like life itself - not to be created by any argument. Afterwards I learned, that the best way to manage some kinds of pain fill thoughts, is to dare them to do their worst; to let them lie and gnaw at your heart till they are tired; and you find you still have a residue of life they cannot kill. So, better and worse, I went on, till I came to a little clearing in the forest.
George MacDonald (Phantastes)
I must try to enjoy all the graces that God has given me today. Grace cannot be hoarded. There are no banks where it can be deposited to be used when I feel more at peace with myself. If I do not make full use of these blessings, I will lose them forever. God knows that we are all artists of life. One day, he gives us a hammer with which to make sculptures, another day he gives us brushes and paints with which to make a picture, or paper and a pencil to write with. But you cannot make a painting with a hammer, or a sculpture with a paintbrush. Therefore, however difficult it may be, I must accept today's small blessings, even if they seem like curses because I am suffering and it's a beautiful day, the sun is shining, and the children are singing in the street. This is the only way I will manage to leave my pain behind and rebuild my life.
Paulo Coelho (The Zahir)
I have no idea whether parents can be of help, and I do not blame mine. It was my own affair to come to terms with myself and to find my own way, and like most well-brought-up children, I managed it badly. Everyone goes through this crisis. For the average person this is the point when the demands of his own life come into the sharpest conflict with his environment, when the way forward has to be sought with the bitterest means at his command. Many people experience the dying and rebirth - which is our fate - only this once during their entire life. Their childhood becomes hollow and gradually collapses, everything they love abandons them and they suddenly feel surrounded by the loneliness and mortal cold of the universe. Very many are caught forever in this impasse, and for the rest of their lives cling painfully to an irrevocable past, the dream of the lost paradise - which is the worst and most ruthless of dreams.
Hermann Hesse (Demian: Die Geschichte von Emil Sinclairs Jugend)
[Speaking to a group of wealthy New Yorkers] A million years ago, the cave man, without tools, with small brain, and with nothing but the strength of his body, managed to feed his wife and children, so that through him the race survived. You on the other hand, armed with all the modern means of production, multiplying the productive capacity of the cave man a million times — you are incompetents and muddlers, you are unable to secure to millions even the paltry amount of bread that would sustain their physical life. You have mismanaged the world, and it shall be taken from you. 
Jack London
I wasn't kidding about the flying-kids part. Or the talking-dog part. Anyone who's up to speed on the Adventures of Amazing Max and Her Flying, Fun-Loving Cohorts, you can skip this next page or so. Those of you who picked up this book cold, even thought it's clearly part three of the series, well, get with the program, people! I can't take two days to get you caught up on everything! Here's the abbreviated version (which is pretty, I might add): A bunch of mad scientists (mad crazy not mad angry- though a lot of them seem to have anger-management issues, especially around me) have been playing around with recombinant life-forms, where they graft different species' DNA together.
James Patterson (Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports (Maximum Ride, #3))
Horses are of a breed unique to Fantasyland. They are capable of galloping full-tilt all day without a rest. Sometimes they do not require food or water. They never cast shoes, go lame or put their hooves down holes, except when the Management deems it necessary, as when the forces of the Dark Lord are only half an hour behind. They never otherwise stumble. Nor do they ever make life difficult for Tourists by biting or kicking their riders or one another. They never resist being mounted or blow out so that their girths slip, or do any of the other things that make horses so chancy in this world. For instance, they never shy and seldom whinny or demand sugar at inopportune moments. But for some reason you cannot hold a conversation while riding them. If you want to say anything to another Tourist (or vice versa), both of you will have to rein to a stop and stand staring out over a valley while you talk. Apart from this inexplicable quirk, horses can be used just like bicycles, and usually are. Much research into how these exemplary animals come to exist has resulted in the following: no mare ever comes into season on the Tour and no stallion ever shows an interest in a mare; and few horses are described as geldings. It therefore seems probable that they breed by pollination. This theory seems to account for everything, since it is clear that the creatures do behave more like vegetables than mammals. Nomads appears to have a monopoly on horse-breeding. They alone possess the secret of how to pollinate them.
Diana Wynne Jones (The Tough Guide to Fantasyland)
December 27, 11:00 p.m. My Dear America, I’ve never written a love letter, so forgive me if I fail now. . . . The simple thing would be to say that I love you. But, in truth, it’s so much more than that. I want you, America. I need you. I’ve held back so much from you out of fear. I’m afraid that if I show you everything at once, it will overwhelm you, and you’ll run away. I’m afraid that somewhere in the back of your heart is a love for someone else that will never die. I’m afraid that I will make a mistake again, something so huge that you retreat into that silent world of yours. No scolding from a tutor, no lashing from my father, no isolation in my youth has ever hurt me so much as you separating yourself from me. I keep thinking that it’s there, waiting to come back and strike me. So I’ve held on to all my options, fearing that the moment I wipe them away, you will be standing there with your arms closed, happy to be my friend but unable to be my equal, my queen, my wife. And for you to be my wife is all I want in the world. I love you. I was afraid to admit it for a long time, but I know it now. I would never rejoice in the loss of your father, the sadness you’ve felt since he passed, or the emptiness I’ve experienced since you left. But I’m so grateful that you had to go. I’m not sure how long it would have taken for me to figure this out if I hadn’t had to start trying to imagine a life without you. I know now, with absolute certainty, that is nothing I want. I wish I was as true an artist as you so that I could find a way to tell you what you’ve become to me. America, my love, you are sunlight falling through trees. You are laughter that breaks through sadness. You are the breeze on a too-warm day. You are clarity in the midst of confusion. You are not the world, but you are everything that makes the world good. Without you, my life would still exist, but that’s all it would manage to do. You said that to get things right one of us would have to take a leap of faith. I think I’ve discovered the canyon that must be leaped, and I hope to find you waiting for me on the other side. I love you, America. Yours forever, Maxon
Kiera Cass (The One (The Selection, #3))
You should know, I can’t be a fling. Not with you. If you want me, you have to be all in.” A frown knots his brows, and when he speaks, his voice is a rasp. “I’ve lived my whole life denying myself what I truly want. And yet I cannot turn from you. Haven’t you realized it yet? I am yours. I will always be yours, whether I touch you or not.
Kristen Callihan (Managed (VIP, #2))
Rose had the sort of eyes that manage perfectly well with things close by, but entirely blur out things far away. Because of this even the brightest stars had only appeared as silvery smudges in the darkness. In all her life, Rose had never properly seen a star. Tonight there was a sky full. Rose looked up, and it was like walking into a dark room and someone switching on the universe.
Hilary McKay (Indigo's Star (Casson Family, #2))
The one thing that everybody wants is to be free...not to be managed, threatened, directed, restrained, obliged, fearful, administered, they want none of these things they all want to feel free, the word discipline, and forbidden and investigated and imprisoned brings horror and fear into all hearts, they do not want to be afraid not more than is necessary in the ordinary business of living where one has to earn one's living and has to fear want and disease and death....The only thing that any one wants now is to be free, to be let alone, to live their life as they can, but not to be watched, controlled and scared, no no, not. ~ September, 1943
Gertrude Stein
Have you ever had a moment where you knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you were in the right place? That you were on the right journey? Maybe the sense that you’d crossed a boundary, jumped a hurdle, and somehow, after facing some unconquerable mountain, found yourself suddenly on the other side of it? When the night was warm and the wind was cool, and a song carried through the quiet streets around you. When you felt the entire world around you, and you were part of it—of the hum of it—and everything was good. Contentment, I suppose, is the simple explanation for it. But it seems more than that, thicker than that, some unity of purpose, some sense of being truly, honestly, for that moment, at home. Those moments never seem to last long enough. The song ends, the breeze stills, the worries and fears creep in again and you’re left trying to move forward, but glancing back at the mountain behind you, wondering how you managed to cross it, afraid you really didn’t—that the bulk and shadow over your shoulder might evaporate and re-form before you, and you’d be faced with the burden of crossing it again. The song ends, and you stare at the quiet, dark house in front of you, and you grasp the doorknob, and walk back into your life.
Chloe Neill
Today, suddenly, I reached an absurd but unerring conclusion. In a moment of enlightenment, I realized that I'm nobody, absolutely nobody. When the lightning flashed, I saw that what I had thought to be a city was in fact a deserted plain and, in the same sinister light that revealed me to myself, there seemed to be no sky above it. I was robbed of any possibility of having existed before the world. If I was ever reincarnated, I must have done so without myself, without a self to reincarnate. I am the outskirts of some non-existent town, the long-winded prologue to an unwritten book. I'm nobody, nobody. I don't know how to feel or think or love. I'm a character in a novel as yet unwritten, hovering in the air and undone before I've even existed, amongst the dreams of someone who never quite managed to breathe life into me. I'm always thinking, always feeling, but my thoughts lack all reason, my emotions all feeling. I'm falling through a trapdoor, through infinite, infinitous space, in a directionless, empty fall. My soul is a black maelstrom, a great madness spinning about a vacuum, the swirling of a vast ocean around a hole in the void, and in the waters, more like whirlwinds than waters, float images of all I ever saw or heard in the world: houses, faces, books, boxes, snatches of music and fragments of voices, all caught up in a sinister, bottomless whirlpool. And I, I myself, am the centre that exists only because the geometry of the abyss demands it; I am the nothing around which all this spins, I exist so that it can spin, I am a centre that exists only because every circle has one. I, I myself, am the well in which the walls have fallen away to leave only viscous slime. I am the centre of everything surrounded by the great nothing. And it is as if hell itself were laughing within me but, instead of the human touch of diabolical laughter, there's the mad croak of the dead universe, the circling cadaver of physical space, the end of all worlds drifting blackly in the wind, misshapen, anachronistic, without the God who created it, without God himself who spins in the dark of darks, impossible, unique, everything. If only I could think! If only I could feel!
Fernando Pessoa (The Book of Disquiet)
Surrender is the ultimate sign of strength and the foundation for a spiritual life. Surrendering affirms that we are no longer willing to live in pain. It expresses a deep desire to transcend our struggles and transform our negative emotions. It commands a life beyond our egos, beyond that part of ourselves that is continually reminding us that we are separate, different and alone. Surrendering allows us to return to our true nature and move effortlessly through the cosmic dance called life. It's a powerful statement that proclaims the perfect order of the universe. When you surrender your will, you are saying, "Even though things are not exactly how I'd like them to be, I will face my reality. I will look it directly in the eye and allow it to be here." Surrender and serenity are synonymous; you can't experience one without the other. So if it's serenity you're searching for, it's close by. All you have to do is resign as General Manager of the Universe. Choose to trust that there is a greater plan for you and that if you surrender, it will be unfolded in time. Surrender is a gift that you can give yourself. It's an act of faith. It's saying that even though I can't see where this river is flowing, I trust it will take me in the right direction.
Debbie Ford (Spiritual Divorce: Divorce as a Catalyst for an Extraordinary Life)
You still haven't managed to heal the scars left by some of the injustices committed against you in your life and it doesn't do you any good. All it does is feed a constant desire to feel sorry for yourself, because you were the victim of people stronger than you. Or else it makes you go to the other extreme and disguise yourself as an avenger ready to strike out at the people who hurt you. Isn't that a waste of time?...It is human, but it's not intelligent or reasonable.
Paulo Coelho
For a long time we just held each other, our hearts beating hard. My eyes were closed, my face pressed against the warm dip between his shoulder and neck. Alex. I felt a happiness so great that it was like a deep stillness within me, as if something I'd been looking for my entire life had just slotted into place, making me whole. Finally Alex drew back. Stroking my hair from my face, he kissed me slowly, and I wanted to melt. "I can't believe that I can just do that whenver I want to now," he whispered. "You may not be getting much done for the next few weeks. Or months, or years." Years. My heart skipped, hoping that was true. "I think I can live with that," I said. Hardly able to believe that I could touch him whenever I wanted to, either, I slid my hand down his arm, feeling the different textures of him: hard muscle, smooth skin. "Do you want to go to bed?" I asked softly. Then, for the second time that night, I felt my face flame at the question. Alex smiled and touched my cheek. "You still mean sleep, right?" "Still sleep." My skin was on fire. "Just making sure. Yeah, sleep sounds good. I'm sure I'll manage to drop off. Eventually." His smile turned teasing. "Do I have to put my shirt on?" I couldn't help smiling, too, though embarrassment was still singeing through me. "No, I'd rather you didn't," I admitted.
L.A. Weatherly (Angel (Angel, #1))
The shared meal is no small thing. It is a foundation of family life, the place where our children learn the art of conversation and acquire the habits of civilization: sharing, listening, taking turns, navigating differences, arguing without offending. What have been called the “cultural contradictions of capitalism”—its tendency to undermine the stabilizing social forms it depends on—are on vivid display today at the modern American dinner table, along with all the brightly colored packages that the food industry has managed to plant there.
Michael Pollan (Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation)
It’s loneliness. Even though I’m surrounded by loved ones who care about me and want only the best, it’s possible they try to help only because they feel the same thing—loneliness—and why, in a gesture of solidarity, you’ll find the phrase “I am useful, even if alone” carved in stone. Though the brain says all is well, the soul is lost, confused, doesn’t know why life is being unfair to it. But we still wake up in the morning and take care of our children, our husband, our lover, our boss, our employees, our students, those dozens of people who make an ordinary day come to life. And we often have a smile on our face and a word of encouragement, because no one can explain their loneliness to others, especially when we are always in good company. But this loneliness exists and eats away at the best parts of us because we must use all our energy to appear happy, even though we will never be able to deceive ourselves. But we insist, every morning, on showing only the rose that blooms, and keep the thorny stem that hurts us and makes us bleed hidden within. Even knowing that everyone, at some point, has felt completely and utterly alone, it is humiliating to say, “I’m lonely, I need company. I need to kill this monster that everyone thinks is as imaginary as a fairy-tale dragon, but isn’t.” But it isn’t. I wait for a pure and virtuous knight, in all his glory, to come defeat it and push it into the abyss for good, but that knight never comes. Yet we cannot lose hope. We start doing things we don’t usually do, daring to go beyond what is fair and necessary. The thorns inside us will grow larger and more overwhelming, yet we cannot give up halfway. Everyone is looking to see the final outcome, as though life were a huge game of chess. We pretend it doesn’t matter whether we win or lose, the important thing is to compete. We root for our true feelings to stay opaque and hidden, but then … … instead of looking for companionship, we isolate ourselves even more in order to lick our wounds in silence. Or we go out for dinner or lunch with people who have nothing to do with our lives and spend the whole time talking about things that are of no importance. We even manage to distract ourselves for a while with drink and celebration, but the dragon lives on until the people who are close to us see that something is wrong and begin to blame themselves for not making us happy. They ask what the problem is. We say that everything is fine, but it’s not … Everything is awful. Please, leave me alone, because I have no more tears to cry or heart left to suffer. All I have is insomnia, emptiness, and apathy, and, if you just ask yourselves, you’re feeling the same thing. But they insist that this is just a rough patch or depression because they are afraid to use the real and damning word: loneliness. Meanwhile, we continue to relentlessly pursue the only thing that would make us happy: the knight in shining armor who will slay the dragon, pick the rose, and clip the thorns. Many claim that life is unfair. Others are happy because they believe that this is exactly what we deserve: loneliness, unhappiness. Because we have everything and they don’t. But one day those who are blind begin to see. Those who are sad are comforted. Those who suffer are saved. The knight arrives to rescue us, and life is vindicated once again. Still, you have to lie and cheat, because this time the circumstances are different. Who hasn’t felt the urge to drop everything and go in search of their dream? A dream is always risky, for there is a price to pay. That price is death by stoning in some countries, and in others it could be social ostracism or indifference. But there is always a price to pay. You keep lying and people pretend they still believe, but secretly they are jealous, make comments behind your back, say you’re the very worst, most threatening thing there is. You are not an adulterous man, tolerated and often even admired, but an adulterous woman, one who is ...
Paulo Coelho (Adultery)
You may claim no affiliation with them, but perhaps some have crossed your path.And perhaps you'd like to help us find them." "Oh,sure.You killed my mother. You can imagine I'm dying to help you out." Thomas manages to ignore me again. He glances at the first photo projected on the wall. "Know this person?" I shake my head. "Never seen him before." Thomas clicks the remote. Another photo pops up. "How about this one?" "Nope." Another photo. "How about this?" "Nope." Yet another stranger pops up on the wall. "Seen this girl before?" "Never seen her in my life." More unfamiliar faces. Thomas goes through them without blinking an eye or questioning my responses. What a stupid puppet of the state. I watch him as we continue, wishing I weren't chained so I could beat this man to the ground.
Marie Lu (Legend (Legend, #1))
However hard he tried, he could never manage to make himself visible to human eyes and not because he can't, since for him nothing is impossible, it's simply that he wouldn't know what face to wear when introducing himself to the beings he supposedly created and who probably wouldn't recognize him anyway. There are those who say we're very fortunate that god chooses not to appear before us, because compared with the shock we would get were such a thing to happen, our fear of death would be mere child's play. Besides, all the many things that have been said about god and about death are nothing but stories, and this is just another one.
José Saramago (Death with Interruptions)
I used to think that if you cared for other people, you need to study sociology or something like it. But….I [have] concluded, if you want to help other people, be a manager. If done well, management is among the most noble of professions. You are in a position where you have eight or ten hours every day from every person who works for you. You have the opportunity to frame each person’s work so that, at the end of every day, your employees will go home feeling like Diana felt on her good day: living a life filled with motivators.
Clayton M. Christensen (How Will You Measure Your Life?)
We modern human beings are looking at life, trying to make some sense of it; observing a 'reality' that often seems to be unfolding in a foreign tongue--only we've all been issued the wrong librettos. For a text, we're given the Bible. Or the Talmud or the Koran. We're given Time magazine, and Reader's Digest, daily papers, and the six o'clock news; we're given schoolbooks, sitcoms, and revisionist histories; we're given psychological counseling, cults, workshops, advertisements, sales pitches, and authoritative pronouncements by pundits, sold-out scientists, political activists, and heads of state. Unfortunately, none of these translations bears more than a faint resemblance to what is transpiring in the true theater of existence, and most of them are dangerously misleading. We're attempting to comprehend the spiraling intricacies of a magnificently complex tragicomedy with librettos that describe the barrom melodramas or kindergarten skits. And when's the last time you heard anybody bitch about it to the management?
Tom Robbins (Half Asleep in Frog Pajamas)
She came before she could stop herself, a small pop of release. Panting, she ripped the goggles off and found Peabody gaping at her. "It wasn't a walk on a quiet beach," Eve managed. "I could see that. What was it, exactly?" "A couple of mostly naked guys and a big satin bed." Eve blew out a breath, set the goggles down. "Who'd have thought she relaxed with sex fantasies?" "Ah, Lieutenant. Sir. As your aide, I believe it's my responsibility to test that unit. For evidence control." Eve tucked her tongue in her cheek. "Peabody, I couldn't let you take that kind of risk." "I'm a cop, sir. Risk is my life.
J.D. Robb (Rapture in Death (In Death, #4))
Grit, persistence, adaptability, financial literacy, interview skills, human relationships, conversation, communication, managing technology, navigating conflicts, preparing healthy food, physical fitness, resilience, self-regulation, time management, basic psychology and mental health practices, arts, and music—all of these would help students and also make school seem much more relevant. Our fixation on college readiness leads our high school curricula toward purely academic subjects and away from life skills. The purpose of education should be to enable a citizen to live a good, positive, socially productive life independent of work.
Andrew Yang (The War on Normal People: The Truth About America's Disappearing Jobs and Why Universal Basic Income Is Our Future)
Man cuts out for himself a manageable world: he throws himself into action uncritically, unthinkingly. He accepts the cultural programming that turns his nose where he is supposed to look; he doesn’t bite the world off in one piece as a giant would, but in small manageable pieces, as a beaver does. He uses all kinds of techniques, which we call the “character defenses”: he learns not to expose himself, not to stand out; he learns to embed himself in other-power, both of concrete persons and of things and cultural commands; the result is that he comes to exist in the imagined infallibility of the world around him. He doesn’t have to have fears when his feet are solidly mired and his life mapped out in a ready-made maze. All he has to do is to plunge ahead in a compulsive style of drivenness in the “ways of the world.
Ernest Becker (The Denial of Death)
In a werewolf pack, you cannot interfere with the mate choice of a clan fellow. You cannot intentionally harm that werewolf’s chosen mate. You are not, however, required to help that person should he find himself in a life - threatening situation. Somehow, Zeb had managed to stumble into several such situations in the few months since he ’d been engaged to Jolene. He’d had several hunting “accidents” while visiting the McClaine farm, even though he didn’t hunt. The brakes on his car had failed while he was driving home from the farm—twice. Also, a running chainsaw mysteriously fell on him from a hayloft. He would never get that pinkie toe back.
Molly Harper (Nice Girls Don't Date Dead Men (Jane Jameson, #2))
A mature person has the integrity to be alone. And when a mature person gives love, he gives without any strings attached to it: he simply gives. And when a mature person gives love, he feels grateful that you have accepted his love, not vice versa. He does not expect you to be thankful for it – no, not at all, he does not even need your thanks. He thanks you for accepting his love. And when two mature persons are in love, one of the greatest paradoxes of life happens, one of the most beautiful phenomena: they are together and yet tremendously alone, they are together so much so that they are almost one. But their oneness does not destroy their individuality; in fact, it enhances it: they become more individual. Two mature persons in love help each other to become more free. There is no politics involved, no diplomacy, no effort to dominate. How can you dominate the person you love? Just think over it. Domination is a sort of hatred, anger, enmity. How can you even think of dominating a person you love? You would love to see the person totally free, independent; you will give him more individuality. That’s why I call it the greatest paradox: they are together so much so that they are almost one, but still in that oneness they are individuals. Their individualities are not effaced; they have become more enhanced. The other has enriched them as far as their freedom is concerned. Immature people falling in love destroy each other’s freedom, create a bondage, make a prison. Mature persons in love help each other to be free; they help each other to destroy all sorts of bondages. And when love flows with freedom there is beauty. When love flows with dependence there is ugliness. Remember, freedom is a higher value than love. That’s why, in India, the ultimate we call moksha. Moksha means freedom. Freedom is a higher value than love. So if love is destroying freedom, it is not of worth. Love can be dropped, freedom has to be saved; freedom is a higher value. And without freedom you can never be happy, that is not possible. Freedom is the intrinsic desire of each man, each woman – utter freedom, absolute freedom. So anything that becomes destructive to freedom, one starts hating it. Don’t you hate the man you love? Don’t you hate the woman you love? You hate; it is a necessary evil, you have to tolerate it. Because you cannot be alone you have to manage to be with somebody, and you have to adjust to the other’s demands. You have to tolerate, you have to bear them. Love, to be really love, has to be being-love, gift-love. Being-love means a state of love. When you have arrived home, when you have known who you are, then a love arises in your being. Then the fragrance spreads and you can give it to others. How can you give something which you don’t have? To give it, the first basic requirement is to have it.
Osho (Tantric Transformation: When Love Meets Meditation)
Dear Josh, Thank you for giving me the most amazing memories. My life growing up was so full because you were in it. Having your love and loving you was always just right. It made sense. You were my home. When I was with you I knew everything would be okay. You dried my tears for me when I was sad. You held my hand when we buried my mother. You made me laugh when the world seemed like it was falling apart. You were every special memory a girl could have. That first kiss will forever be embedded in my brain. It was as funny as it was sweet. Our life together molded me into the woman I’ve become. I understand what it feels like to be loved and cherished because I had that with you. I never doubted my worth because you taught me I was worthy. When you said that one day I would heal I didn’t believe that was possible. Life couldn’t go one without my best friend. There was no room for another guy in my heart. It turns out you were right. You always were. I found him. He is incredible. He is nothing at all like I would have planned. He doesn’t fit into a perfect package. He managed to wiggle into my heart and take over before I knew what was happening. I found that happiness you told me would come along. I’m going to go live that life. I’m sure it will be a wilder ride than I ever imagined and I can’t wait to live it. He’s my home now. I’ll always love you. I’ll never forget you. But this is my goodbye. I wasn’t ready before to let you go. Now, I can move on. Your memory will live on in my heart always. Love, Your Eva Blue
Abbi Glines (While It Lasts (Sea Breeze, #3))
Let me tell you something you haven't learnt yet, something you learn only by living awhile. As you get older, you find that life begins to wear you down. Doesn't matter who you are or what you do, it happens. Experience, time, events - they all conspire against you to steal away your energy, to erode your confidence, to make you question things you wouldn't have given a second thought to when you were young. It happens gradually, a chipping away that you don't even notice at first, and then one day it's there. You wake up and you just don't have the fire anymore...Then you have a choice. You can either give in to what you're feeling, just say "okay, enough is enough" and be done with it, or you can fight it. You can accept that every day you're alive you're going to have to face it down, that you're going to have to say to yourself that you don't care what you feel, that it doesn't matter what happens anyway, that you're going to do what you have to because otherwise you're defeated and life doesn't have any real pupose left. When you can do that, little Wren, when you can accept the wearing down and the eroding, then you can do anything. How did I manage to keep going out nights? I just told myself I didn't matter all that much - that those in here mattered more. You know something? It's not so hard really. You just have to get past the fear.
Terry Brooks
This is an ode to all of those that have never asked for one. A thank you in words to all of those that do not do what they do so well for the thanking. This is to the mothers. This is to the ones who match our first scream with their loudest scream; who harmonize in our shared pain and joy and terrified wonder when life begins. This is to the mothers. To the ones who stay up late and wake up early and always know the distance between their soft humming song and our tired ears. To the lips that find their way to our foreheads and know, somehow always know, if too much heat is living in our skin. To the hands that spread the jam on the bread and the mesmerizing patient removal of the crust we just cannot stomach. This is to the mothers. To the ones who shout the loudest and fight the hardest and sacrifice the most to keep the smiles glued to our faces and the magic spinning through our days. To the pride they have for us that cannot fit inside after all they have endured. To the leaking of it out their eyes and onto the backs of their hands, to the trails of makeup left behind as they smile through those tears and somehow always manage a laugh. This is to the patience and perseverance and unyielding promise that at any moment they would give up their lives to protect ours. This is to the mothers. To the single mom’s working four jobs to put the cheese in the mac and the apple back into the juice so their children, like birds in a nest, can find food in their mouths and pillows under their heads. To the dreams put on hold and the complete and total rearrangement of all priority. This is to the stay-at-home moms and those that find the energy to go to work every day; to the widows and the happily married. To the young mothers and those that deal with the unexpected announcement of a new arrival far later than they ever anticipated. This is to the mothers. This is to the sack lunches and sleepover parties, to the soccer games and oranges slices at halftime. This is to the hot chocolate after snowy walks and the arguing with the umpire at the little league game. To the frosting ofbirthday cakes and the candles that are always lit on time; to the Easter egg hunts, the slip-n-slides and the iced tea on summer days. This is to the ones that show us the way to finding our own way. To the cutting of the cord, quite literally the first time and even more painfully and metaphorically the second time around. To the mothers who become grandmothers and great-grandmothers and if time is gentle enough, live to see the children of their children have children of their own. To the love. My goodness to the love that never stops and comes from somewhere only mothers have seen and know the secret location of. To the love that grows stronger as their hands grow weaker and the spread of jam becomes slower and the Easter eggs get easier to find and sack lunches no longer need making. This is to the way the tears look falling from the smile lines around their eyes and the mascara that just might always be smeared with the remains of their pride for all they have created. This is to the mothers.
Tyler Knott Gregson
A boy was watching his grandmother write a letter. At one point he asked: ‘Are you writing a story about what we’ve done? Is it a story about me?’ His grandmother stopped writing her letter and said to her grandson: I am writing about you, actually, but more important than the words is the pencil I’m using. I hope you will be like this pencil when you grow up.’ Intrigued, the boy looked at the pencil. It didn’t seem very special. ‘But it’s just like any other pencil I’ve ever seen!’ ‘That depends on how you look at things. It has five qualities which, if you manage to hang on them, will make you a person who is always at peace with the world.’ ‘First quality: you are capable of great things, but you must never forget that there is a hand guiding your steps. We call that hand God, and He always guides us according to His will.’ ‘Second quality: now and then, I have to stop writing and use a sharpner. That makes the pencil suffer a little, but afterwards, he’s much sharper. So you, too, must learn to bear certain pains and sorrows, because they will make you a better person. ‘Third quality: the pencil always allows us to use an eraser to rub out any mistakes. This means that correcting something we did is not necessarily a bad thing; it helps to keep us on the road to justice.’ ‘Fourth quality: what really matters in a pencil is not its wooden exterior, but the graphite inside. So always pay attention to what is happening inside you.’ ‘Finally, the pencil’s fifth quality: it always leaves a mark. in just the same way, you should know that everything you do in life will leave a mark, so try to be conscious of that in your every action
Paulo Coelho (Like the Flowing River)
But Carroll's were more convoluted, and they struck me as funny in a new way: 1) Babies are illogical. 2) Nobody is despised who can manage a crocodile. 3) Illogical persons are despised. Therefore, babies cannot manage crocodiles. And: 1) No interesting poems are unpopular among people of real taste. 2) No modern poetry is free from affectation. 3) All of your poems are on the subject of soap bubbles. 4) No affected poetry is popular among people of taste. 5) Only a modern poem would be on the subject of soap bubbles. Therefore, all your poems are uninteresting.
Steve Martin (Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life)
Someday, sometime, you will be sitting somewhere. A berm overlooking a pond in Vermont. The lip of the Grand Canyon at sunset. A seat on the subway. And something bad will have happened: You will have lost someone you loved, or failed at something at which you badly wanted to succeed. And sitting there, you will fall into the center of yourself. You will look for some core to sustain you. And if you have been perfect all your life and have managed to meet all the expectations of your family, your friends, your community, your society, chances are excellent that there will be a black hole where that core ought to be. I don't want anyone I know to take that terrible chance. And the only way to avoid it is to listen to that small voice inside you that tells you to make mischief, to have fun, to be contrarian, to go another way. George Eliot wrote, 'It is never too late to be what you might have been.' It is never too early, either.
Anna Quindlen (Being Perfect)
Brad (Lauren's ex) ignored Hayley (she's Brad's ex girlfriend) and looked at me, he did a top to toe and back again then his gaze moved to Tate. "I'm here to tell you I'm suing you," he announced. Jim-Billy, Nadine, Steg, Wing and my eyes moved to Tate. Tate stared at Brad then he said, "Come again?" "I'm suing you," Brad repeated. "For what?" Tate asked. "Alienation of affection," Brad answered. Without hesitation, Tate threw his head back and burst out laughing. Then he looked at me and remarked, "You're right, babe, this is fun." Ignoring Tate's comment, Brad declared, "You stole my wife." Tate looked back at Brad. "Yeah, bud, I did." Brad pointed at Tate and his voice was raised when he proclaimed, "See? You admit it." He threw his arm out. "I have witnesses." "Not that any judge'll hear your case, seein' as Lauren divorced your ass before I alienated her affection, but you manage it, I'll pay the fine. In the meantime, I'll keep alienating her affection. You should know, and feel free to share it with your lawyers," Tate continued magnanimously, "schedule's comin' out mornin' and night. Usually, in the mornin', she sucks me off or I make her come in the shower. Night, man…shit, that's even better. Definitely worth the fine." Sorry, it's just too long; I have to cut it off. But it continues…like that: "This is the good life?" (Brad) "Part of it," Tate replied instantly, taking his fists from the bar, leaning into his forearms and asking softly, in a tone meant both to challenge and provoke, "She ever ignite, lose so much control she'd attack you? Climb on top and fuck you so hard she can't breathe?" I watched Brad suffer that blow because I hadn't, not even close. We'd had good sex but not that good and Brad was extremely proud of his sexual prowess. He was convinced he was the best. And he knew, with Tate's words, he was wrong. "Jesus, you're disgusting," Brad muttered, calling up revulsion to save face. "She does that to me," Tate continued. "Fuck off," Brad snapped. "All the fuckin' time," Tate pushed. "Fuck off," Brad repeated. "It's fuckin' magnificent," Tate declared. "Thanks, honey," I whispered and grinned at him when his eyes came to me. I was actually expressing gratitude, although embarrassed by his conversation, but I was also kind of joking to get in Brad's face. Tate wasn't. His expression was serious when he said, "You are, Ace. Fuckin' magnificent.
Kristen Ashley (Sweet Dreams (Colorado Mountain, #2))
Ellen's life was not easy, nor was it happy, but she did not expect life to be easy, and, if it was not happy, that was woman's lot. It was a man's world, and she accepted it as such. The man owned the property, and the woman managed it. The man took credit for the management, and the woman praised his cleverness. The man roared like a bull when a splinter was in his finger, and the woman muffled the moans of childbirth, lest she disturb him. Men were rough of speech and often drunk. Women ignored the lapses of speech and put the drunkards to bed without bitter words. Men were rude and outspoken, women were always kind, gracious and forgiving.
Margaret Mitchell (Gone with the Wind)
You can't imagine fame. You can only ever see it from an outsider and comment on it with the rueful wisdom of a non participant. When it happens to you, it doesn't matter what age or how, it is a very steep learning curve. The imprtanot thing to realize in all of it is that life is short, to protect the ones you love, and not expose yourself to too much abuse or narcissistic reflection gazing and move on. If fame affords me the type of ability to do the kind of work I'm being offered, who am I to complain about the downsides. It's all relative. And this are obviously very high class problems. The way privacy becomes an every shrinking island is inevitable but also manageable and it doesn't necessary have to get that way...
Benedict Cumberbatch
She didn’t know how long they stood on that roof, tangled up in each other, mouths and hands roving until she moaned and dragged him through the greenhouse, down the stairs, and into the carriage waiting outside. And then there was the ride home, where he did things to her neck and ear that made her forget her own name. They managed to straighten themselves out as they reached the castle gates, and kept a respectable distance as they walked back to her room, though every inch of her felt so alive and burning that it was a miracle she made it back to her door without pulling him into a closet.But then they were inside her rooms, and then at her bedroom door, and he paused as she took his hand to lead him in. “Are you sure?” She lifted a hand to his face, exploring every curve and freckle that had become so impossibly precious to her. She had waited once before—waited with Sam, and then it had been too late. But now, there was no doubt, no shred of fear or uncertainty, as if every moment between her and Chaol had been a step in a dance that had led to this threshold. “I’ve never been so sure of anything in my life,” she told him. His eyes blazed with hunger that matched her own, and she kissed him again, tugging him into her bedroom. He let her pull him, not breaking the kiss as he kicked the door shut behind them.
Sarah J. Maas (Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass, #2))
Comfort blindfolds; difficulty brings realization. Pain reveals; disappointments plant trigger of actions. Fear controls; ignorance deceives. Anger torments; silence keeps. Misunderstanding divides; love joins. Laughter starts; deception suspects. Frowning cautions; sorrow remembers. Purposefulness moves; idleness wastes. When you live in comfort, ponder. When you live in pain, take lessons. When life goes up, plant your feet and appreciate the height. When life goes down, envision the height and dare to get there with tenacity. Life is how you take and manage things. Be a manager of things or things shall be your manager
Ernest Agyemang Yeboah
Just by breathing deeply on your anger, you will calm it. You are being mindful of your anger, not suppressing it...touching it with the energy of mindfulness. You are not denying it at all. When I speak about this to psychotherapists, I have some difficulty. When I say that anger makes us suffer, they take it to mean that anger is something negative to be removed. But I always say that anger is an organic thing, like love. Anger can become love. Our compost can become a rose. If we know how to take care of our compost...Anger is the same. It can be negative when we do not know how to handle it, but if we know how to handle our anger, it can be very positive. We do not need to throw anything away," (50).
Thich Nhat Hanh (For a Future to Be Possible: Buddhist Ethics for Everyday Life)
Tell me what you do with the food you eat, and I'll tell you who you are. Some turn their food into fat and manure, some into work and good humor, and others, I'm told, into God. So there must be three sorts of men. I'm not one of the worst, boss, nor yet one of the best. I'm somewhere in between the two. What I eat I turn into work and good humor. That's not too bad, after all!' He looked at me wickedly and started laughing. 'As for you, boss,' he said, 'I think you do your level best to turn what you eat into God. But you can't quite manage it, and that torments you. The same thing's happening to you as happened to the crow.' 'What happened to the crow, Zorba?' 'Well, you see, he used to walk respectably, properly - well, like a crow. But one day he got it into his head to try and strut about like a pigeon. And from that time on the poor fellow couldn't for the life of him recall his own way of walking. He was all mixed up, don't you see? He just hobbled about.
Nikos Kazantzakis (Zorba the Greek)
So, what's the big emergency, princess? You and ice-boy look fine to me, and the Nevernever isn't crumbling around us. What's going on?" "I'm pregnant, Puck," I said quietly, and watched his eyebrows shoot into his hair. Briefly,I explained what had happened at Elysium, the oracle's mysterious appearance and invitation, and Grimalkin's instruction to meet him at the Wishing Tree. By the time I was done, Puck was still staring at me openmouthed, struck mute for maybe the second time in his life, and I would've laughed if the situation wasn't so serious. "Oh," he finally managed. "That's, uh... Wow. That's not something you hear every day. Not exactly what I was expecting, though the entire prophecy thing does get old after a while." He shook himself, seeming to regain his composure, and glanced at Ash. "So, it's the ever so popular Firstborn Child of Doom prophecy, huh, ice-boy? How very cliche. Why can't it be the third nephew twice removed who's fated to destroy the world?
Julie Kagawa (Iron's Prophecy (The Iron Fey, #4.5))
Let's say that the consensus is that our species, being the higher primates, Homo Sapiens, has been on the planet for at least 100,000 years, maybe more. Francis Collins says maybe 100,000. Richard Dawkins thinks maybe a quarter-of-a-million. I'll take 100,000. In order to be a Christian, you have to believe that for 98,000 years, our species suffered and died, most of its children dying in childbirth, most other people having a life expectancy of about 25 years, dying of their teeth. Famine, struggle, bitterness, war, suffering, misery, all of that for 98,000 years. Heaven watches this with complete indifference. And then 2000 years ago, thinks 'That's enough of that. It's time to intervene,' and the best way to do this would be by condemning someone to a human sacrifice somewhere in the less literate parts of the Middle East. Don't lets appeal to the Chinese, for example, where people can read and study evidence and have a civilization. Let's go to the desert and have another revelation there. This is nonsense. It can't be believed by a thinking person. Why am I glad this is the case? To get to the point of the wrongness of Christianity, because I think the teachings of Christianity are immoral. The central one is the most immoral of all, and that is the one of vicarious redemption. You can throw your sins onto somebody else, vulgarly known as scapegoating. In fact, originating as scapegoating in the same area, the same desert. I can pay your debt if I love you. I can serve your term in prison if I love you very much. I can volunteer to do that. I can't take your sins away, because I can't abolish your responsibility, and I shouldn't offer to do so. Your responsibility has to stay with you. There's no vicarious redemption. There very probably, in fact, is no redemption at all. It's just a part of wish-thinking, and I don't think wish-thinking is good for people either. It even manages to pollute the central question, the word I just employed, the most important word of all: the word love, by making love compulsory, by saying you MUST love. You must love your neighbour as yourself, something you can't actually do. You'll always fall short, so you can always be found guilty. By saying you must love someone who you also must fear. That's to say a supreme being, an eternal father, someone of whom you must be afraid, but you must love him, too. If you fail in this duty, you're again a wretched sinner. This is not mentally or morally or intellectually healthy. And that brings me to the final objection - I'll condense it, Dr. Orlafsky - which is, this is a totalitarian system. If there was a God who could do these things and demand these things of us, and he was eternal and unchanging, we'd be living under a dictatorship from which there is no appeal, and one that can never change and one that knows our thoughts and can convict us of thought crime, and condemn us to eternal punishment for actions that we are condemned in advance to be taking. All this in the round, and I could say more, it's an excellent thing that we have absolutely no reason to believe any of it to be true.
Christopher Hitchens
She was right about something else too,ʺ Dimitri said after a long pause. My back was to him, but there was a strange quality to his voice that made me turn around. ʺWhatʹs that?ʺ I asked. ʺThat I do still love you.ʺ With that one sentence, everything in the universe changed. Time slowed to one heartbeat. The world became his eyes, his voice. This wasnʹt happening. It wasnʹt real. None of it could be real. It felt like a spirit dream. I resisted the urge to close my eyes and see if Iʹd wake up moments later. No. No matter how unbelievable it all seemed, this was no dream. This was real. This was life. This was flesh and blood. ʺSince . . . since when?ʺ I finally managed to ask. ʺSince . . . forever.ʺ His tone implied the answer was obvious. ʺI denied it when I was restored. I had no room for anything in my heart except guilt. I especially felt guilty about you—what Iʹd done—and I pushed you away. I put up a wall to keep you safe. It worked for a while—until my heart finally started accepting other emotions. And it all came back. Everything I felt for you. It had never left; it was just hidden from me until I was ready. And again . . . that alley was the turning point. I looked at you . . . saw your goodness, your hope, and your faith. Those are what make you beautiful. So, so beautiful.
Richelle Mead (Last Sacrifice (Vampire Academy, #6))
Wasn’t it true, then, that everything in his life from that point on had been a succession of things he hadn’t really wanted to do? Taking a hopelessly dull job to prove he could be as responsible as any other family man, moving to an overpriced, genteel apartment to prove his mature belief in the fundamentals of orderliness and good health, having another child to prove that the first one hadn’t been a mistake, buying a house in the country because that was the next logical step and he had to prove himself capable of taking it. Proving, proving; and for no other reason than that he was married to a woman who had somehow managed to put him forever on the defensive, who loved him when he was nice, who lived according to what she happened to feel like doing and who might at any time—this was the hell of it—who might at any time of day or night just happen to feel like leaving him. It was as ludicrous and as simple as that.
Richard Yates (Revolutionary Road)
After he saw God [Tony Amsterdam] felt really good, for around a year. And then he felt really bad. Worse than he ever had before in his life. Because one day it came over him, he began to realize, that he was never going to see God again; he was going to live out his whole remaining life, decades, maybe fifty years, and see nothing but what he had always seen. What we see. He was worse off than if he hadn’t seen God. He told me one day he got really mad; he just freaked out and started cursing and smashing things in his apartment. He even smashed his stereo. He realized he was going to have to live on and on like he was, seeing nothing. Without any purpose. Just a lump of flesh grinding along, eating, drinking, sleeping, working, crapping.” “Like the rest of us.” It was the first thing Bob Arctor had managed to say; each word came with retching difficulty. Donna said, “That’s what I told him. I pointed that out. We were all in the same boat and it didn’t freak the rest of us. And he said, ‘You don’t know what I saw. You don’t know.’
Philip K. Dick (A Scanner Darkly)
Life was not to be sitting in hot amorphic leisure in my backyard idly writing or not-writing, as the spirit moved me. It was, instead, running madly, in a crowded schedule, in a squirrel cage of busy people. Working, living, dancing, dreaming, talking, kissing — singing, laughing, learning. The responsibility, the awful responsibility of managing (profitably) 12 hours a day for 10 weeks is rather overwhelming when there is nothing, noone, to insert an exact routine into the large unfenced acres of time — which it is so easy to let drift by in soporific idling and luxurious relaxing. It is like lifting a bell jar off a securely clockwork-like functioning community, and seeing all the little busy people stop, gasp, blow up and float in the inrush, (or rather outrush,) of the rarified scheduled atmosphere — poor little frightened people, flailing impotent arms in the aimless air. That's what it feels like: getting shed of a routine. Even though one had rebelled terribly against it, even then, one feels uncomfortable when jounced out of the repetitive rut. And so with me. What to do? Where to turn? What ties, what roots? as I hang suspended in the strange thin air of back-home?
Sylvia Plath (The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath)
The things of your life arrived in their own time, like a train you had to catch. Sometimes this was easy, all you had to do was step onto it, the train was plush and comfortable and full of people smiling at you in a hush, and a conductor who punched your ticket and tousled your head with his big hand, saying, Ain’t you pretty, ain’t you the prettiest girl now, lucky lady taking a big train trip with your daddy, while you sank into the dreamy softness of your seat and sipped ginger ale from a can and watched the world float in magical silence past your window, the tall buildings of the city in the crisp autumn light and then the backs of the houses with laundry flapping and a crossing with gates where a boy was waving from his bicycle, and then the woods and fields and a single cow eating grass....... .....Because sometimes it was one way, easy, and sometimes it was the other, not easy; the things of your life roared down to you and it was all you could do to grab hold and hang on. Your old life ended, and the train took you away to another...
Justin Cronin (The Passage (The Passage, #1))
If you believe that science provides not basis for God, then you are almost obligated to conclude that science provides no basis for meaning and, there for, life itself doesn't have any. In other words, existential claims have no weight; all knowledge is scientific knowledge. Yet the paradox is that scientific methodology is the product of human hands and thus cannot reach some permanent truth. We build scientific theories to organize and manipulate the world, to reduce phenomena into manageable units. Science is based on reproducibility and manufactured objectivity. As strong as that makes its ability to generate claims about matter and energy, it also makes scientific knowledge inapplicable to the existential, visceral nature or human life, which is unique and subjective and unpredictable. Science may provide the most useful may to organize empirical, reproducible data, but its power to do so is predicated on its inability to grasp the most central aspects of human life: hope, fear, love, hate, beauty, envy, honor, weakness, striving, suffering, virtue.
Paul Kalanithi (When Breath Becomes Air)
I can’t quite shake this feeling that we live in a world gone wrong, that there are all these feelings you’re not supposed to have because there’s no reason to anymore. But still they’re there, stuck somewhere, a flaw that evolution hasn’t managed to eliminate yet. I want so badly to feel bad about getting pregnant. But I can’t, don’t dare to. Just like I didn’t dare tell Jack that I was falling in love with him, wanting to be a modern woman who’s supposed to be able to handle the casual nature of these kinds of relationships. I’m never supposed to say, to Jack or anyone else, ‘What makes you think I’m so rich that you can steal my heart and it won’t mean a thing?’ Sometimes I think that I was forced to withdraw into depression, because it was the only rightful protest I could throw in the face of a world that said it was all right for people to come and go as they please, that there were simply no real obligations left. Deceit and treachery in both romantic and political relationships is nothing new, but at one time, it was bad, callous, and cold to hurt somebody. Now it’s just the way things go, part of the growth process. Really nothing is surprising. After a while, meaning and implication detach themselves from everything. If one can be a father and assume no obligations, it follows that one can be a boyfriend and do nothing at all. Pretty soon you can add friend, acquaintance, co-worker, and just about anyone else to the long list of people who seem to be part of your life, though there is no code of conduct that they must adhere to. Pretty soon, it seems unreasonable to be bothered or outraged by much of anything because, well, what did you expect?
Elizabeth Wurtzel (Prozac Nation)
Fire and hope are connected, just so you know. The way the Greek told it, Zeus put Prometheus and Epimetheus in charge of creating life on earth. Epimetheus made the animals, giving out bonuses like swiftness and strenght and fur and wings. By the time Prometheus made man, all the best qualities had been given out. He settled for making them walk upright, and he gave them fire. Zeus, pissed off, took it away. But prometheus saw his pride and joy shivering and unable to cook. He lit a torch from the sun and brought it to man again. To punish Prometheus, Zeus had him chained to a rock, where an eagle fed on his liver. To punish man, Zeus created the first woman-Pandora-and gave her a gift, a box she was forbidden to open. Pandora's curiosity got the best of her, and one day she opened that box. Out came plagues and misery and mischief. She managed to shut the lid tight before hope escaped. It's the only weapon we have left to fight the others.
Jodi Picoult (Allt för min syster)
The problem is, it's just not enough to live according to the rules. Sure, you manage to live according to the rules. Sometimes it's tight, extremely tight, but on the whole you manage it. Your tax papers are up to date. Your bills paid on time. You never go out without your identity card (and the special little wallet for your Visa!). Yet you haven’t any friends. The rules are complex, multiform. There’s the shopping that needs doing out of working hours, the automatic dispensers where money has to be got (and where you so often have to wait). Above all there are the different payments you must make to the organizations that run different aspects of your life. You can fall ill into the bargain, which involves costs, and more formalities. Nevertheless, some free time remains. What’s to be done? How do you use your time? In dedicating yourself to helping people? But basically other people don’t interest you. Listening to records? That used to be a solution, but as the years go by you have to say that music moves you less and less. Taken in its widest sense, a spot of do-it-yourself can be a way out. But the fact is that nothing can halt the ever-increasing recurrence of those moments when your total isolation, the sensation of an all-consuming emptiness, the foreboding that your existence is nearing a painful and definitive end all combine to plunge you into a state of real suffering. And yet you haven’t always wanted to die. You have had a life. There have been moments when you were having a life. Of course you don't remember too much about it; but there are photographs to prove it. This was probably happening round about the time of your adolescence, or just after. How great your appetite for life was, then! Existence seemed so rich in new possibilities. You might become a pop singer, go off to Venezuela. More surprising still, you have had a childhood. Observe, now, a child of seven, playing with his little soldiers on the living room carpet. I want you to observe him closely. Since the divorce he no longer has a father. Only rarely does he see his mother, who occupies an important post in a cosmetics firm. And yet he plays with his little soldiers and the interest he takes in these representations of the world and of war seems very keen. He already lacks a bit of affection, that's for sure, but what an air he has of being interested in the world! You too, you took an interest in the world. That was long ago. I want you to cast your mind back to then. The domain of the rules was no longer enough for you; you were unable to live any longer in the domain of the rules; so you had to enter into the domain of the struggle. I ask you to go back to that precise moment. It was long ago, no? Cast your mind back: the water was cold.
Michel Houellebecq (Whatever)
Dr. Urbino caught the parrot around the neck with a triumphant sigh: ça y est. But he released him immediately because the ladder slipped from under his feet and for an instant he was suspended in the air and then he realized that he had died without Communion, without time to repent of anything or to say goodbye to anyone, at seven minutes after four on Pentecost Sunday. Fermina Daza was in the kitchen tasting the soup for supper when she heard Digna Pardo's horrified shriek and the shouting of the servants and then of the entire neighborhood. She dropped the tasting spoon and tried to run despite the invincible weight of her age, screaming like a madwoman without knowing yet what had happened under the mango leaves, and her heart jumped inside her ribs when she saw her man lying on his back in the mud, dead to this life but still resisting death's final blow for one last minute so that she would have time to come to him. He recognized her despite the uproar, through his tears of unrepeatable sorrow at dying without her, and he looked for her for the last and final time with eyes more luminous, more grief-stricken, more grateful that she had ever seen them in the half century of a shared life, and he managed to say to her with his last breath: "Only God knows how much I loved you.
Gabriel García Márquez (Love in the Time of Cholera)
It was not the sorrowful, lovely piece she had once played for Dorian, and it was not the light, dancing melodies she'd played for sport; it was not the complex and clever pieces she had played for Nehemia and Chaol. This piece was a celebration—a reaffirmation of life, of glory, of the pain and beauty in breathing. Perhaps that was why she'd gone to hear it performed every year, after so much killing and torture and punishment: as a reminder of that she was, of what she struggled to keep. Up and up it built, the sound breaking from the pianoforte like the heart-song of a god, until Rowan drifted over to stand beside the instrument, until she whispered to him, “Now,” and the crescendo shattered into the world, note after note after note. The music crashed around them, roaring through the emptiness of the theater. The hollow silence that had been inside her for so many months now overflowed with sound. She brought the piece home to its final explosive, triumphant chord. When she looked up, panting slightly, Rowan's eyes were lined with silver, his throat bobbing. Somehow, after all this time, her warrior-prince still managed to surprise her. He seemed to struggle for words, but he finally breathed, “Show me—show me how you did that.” So she obliged him.
Sarah J. Maas (Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass, #4))
Tamina serves coffee and calvados to the customers (there aren't all that many, the room being always half empty) and then goes back behind the bar. Almost always there is someone sitting on a barstool, trying to talk to her. Everyone likes Tamina. Because she knows how to listen to people. But is she really listening? Or is she merely looking at them so attentively, so silently? I don't know, and it's not very important. What matters is that she doesn't interrupt anyone. You know what happens when two people talk. One of them speaks and the other breaks in: "It's absolutely the same with me, I..." and starts talking about himself until the first one manages to slip back in with his own "It's absolutely the same with me, I..." The phrase "It's absolutely the same with me, I..." seems to be an approving echo, a way of continuing the other's thought, but that is an illusion: in reality it is a brute revolt against a brutal violence, an effort to free our own ear from bondage and to occupy the enemy's ear by force. Because all of man's life among his kind is nothing other than a battle to seize the ear of others. The whole secret of Tamina's popularity is that she has no desire to talk about herself. She submits to the forces occupying her ear, never saying: "It's absolutely the same with me, I...
Milan Kundera (The Book of Laughter and Forgetting)
The hoopoe said: 'Your heart's congealed like ice; When will you free yourself from cowardice? Since you have such a short time to live here, What difference does it make? What should you fear? The world is filth and sin, and homeless men Must enter it and homeless leave again. They die, as worms, in squalid pain; if we Must perish in this quest, that, certainly, Is better than a life of filth and grief. If this great search is vain, if my belief Is groundless, it is right that I should die. So many errors throng the world - then why Should we not risk this quest? To suffer blame For love is better than a life of shame. No one has reached this goal, so why appeal To those whose blindness claims it is unreal? I'd rather die deceived by dreams than give My heart to home and trade and never live. We've been and heard so much - what have we learned? Not for one moment has the self been spurned; Fools gather round and hinder our release. When will their stale, insistent whining cease? We have no freedom to achieve our goal Until from Self and fools we free the soul. To be admitted past the veil you must Be dead to all the crowd considers just. Once past the veil you understand the Way From which the crowd's glib courtiers blindly stray. If you have any will, leave women's stories, And even if this search for hidden glories Proves blasphemy at last, be sure our quest Is not mere talk but an exacting test. The fruit of love's great tree is poverty; Whoever knows this knows humility. When love has pitched his tent in someone's breast, That man despairs of life and knows no rest. Love's pain will murder him and blandly ask A surgeon's fee for managing the task - The water that he drinks brings pain, his bread Is turned to blood immediately shed; Though he is weak, faint, feebler than an ant, Love forces him to be her combatant; He cannot take one mouthful unaware That he is floundering in a sea of care.
Attar of Nishapur (The Conference of the Birds)
Wait,” I repeated. The darkness vanished, leaving Rhysand in his solid form as he grinned. “Yes?” I raised my chin as high as I could manage. “Just two weeks?” “Just two weeks,” he purred, and knelt before me. “Two teensy, tiny weeks with me every month is all I ask.” “Why? And what are to … to be the terms?” I said, fighting past the dizziness. “Ah,” he said, adjusting the lapel of his obsidian tunic. “If I told you those things, there’d be no fun in it, would there?” I looked at my ruined arm. Lucien might never come, might decide I wasn’t worth risking his life any further, not now that he’d been punished for it. And if Amarantha’s healers cut off my arm … Nesta would have done the same for me, for Elain. And Tamlin had done so much for me, for my family; even if he had lied about the Treaty, about sparing me from its terms, he’d still saved my life that day against the naga, and saved it again by sending me away from the manor. I couldn’t think entirely of the enormity of what I was about to give—or else I might refuse again. I met Rhysand’s gaze. “Five days.” “You’re going to bargain?” Rhysand laughed under his breath. “Ten days.” I held his stare with all my strength. “A week.” Rhysand was silent for a long moment, his eyes traveling across my body and my face before he murmured: “A week it is.” “Then it’s a deal
Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #1))
Are you willing to forget what you have done for other people and to remember what other people have done for you; to ignore what the world owes you and to think what you owe the world; to put your rights in the background and your duties in the middle distance and your chances to do a little more than your duty in the foreground; to see that your fellow men are just as real as you are, and try to look behind their faces to their hearts, hungry for joy; to own that probably the only good reason for your existence is not waht you are going to get out of life, but what you are going to give life; to close your book of complaints against the management of the universe and look around you for a place where you can sow a few seeds of happiness - are you willing to do these things for even a day? Are you willing to stoop down and consider the needs and the desires of little children; to remember the weakness and loneliness of people who are growing old; to stop asking how much your friends love you and ask yourself whether you love them enough; to bear in mind the things that other people have to bear on their hearts; to try to understand what those who live in the same house with you really want, without waiting for them to tell you; to trim your lamp so that it will give more light and less smoke, and to carry it in front of you so that your shadow will fall behind you; to make a grave for your ugly thoughts and a garden for your kindly feelings, with the gate open - are you willing to do these things for even a day? Are you willing to believe that love is the strongest thing in the world, - stronger than hate, stronger than evil, stronger than death, - and that the blessed life which began in Bethlehem nineteen hundred years ago is the image and brightness of the Eternal Love? Then you can keep Christmas. And if you keep it for a day, why not always? But you can never keep it alone.
Caroline Kennedy (A Family Christmas)
The assault on education began more than a century ago by industrialists and capitalists such as Andrew Carnegie. In 1891, Carnegie congratulated the graduates of the Pierce College of Business for being “fully occupied in obtaining a knowledge of shorthand and typewriting” rather than wasting time “upon dead languages.” The industrialist Richard Teller Crane was even more pointed in his 1911 dismissal of what humanists call the “life of the mind.” No one who has “a taste for literature has a right to be happy” because “the only men entitled to happiness… is those who are useful.” The arrival of industrialists on university boards of trustees began as early as the 1870s and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business offered the first academic credential in business administration in 1881. The capitalists, from the start, complained that universities were unprofitable. These early twentieth century capitalists, like heads of investment houses and hedge-fund managers, were, as Donoghue writes “motivated by an ethically based anti-intellectualism that transcended interest in the financial bottom line. Their distrust of the ideal of intellectual inquiry for its own sake, led them to insist that if universities were to be preserved at all, they must operate on a different set of principles from those governing the liberal arts.
Chris Hedges (Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle)
Everybody tries to protect this vulnerable two three four five six seven eight year old inside, and to acquire skills and aptitudes for dealing with the situations that threaten to overwhelm it... Usually, that child is a wretchedly isolated undeveloped little being. It’s been protected by the efficient armour, it’s never participated in life, it’s never been exposed to living and to managing the person’s affairs, it’s never been given responsibility for taking the brunt. And it’s never properly lived. That’s how it is in almost everybody. And that little creature is sitting there, behind the armour, peering through the slits. And in its own self, it is still unprotected, incapable, inexperienced... And in fact, that child is the only real thing in them. It’s their humanity, their real individuality, the one that can’t understand why it was born and that knows it will have to die, in no matter how crowded a place, quite on its own. That’s the carrier of all the living qualities. It’s the centre of all the possible magic and revelation. What doesn’t come out of that creature isn’t worth having, or it’s worth having only as a tool—for that creature to use and turn to account and make meaningful... And so, wherever life takes it by surprise, and suddenly the artificial self of adaptations proves inadequate, and fails to ward off the invasion of raw experience, that inner self is thrown into the front line—unprepared, with all its childhood terrors round its ears. And yet that’s the moment it wants. That’s where it comes alive—even if only to be overwhelmed and bewildered and hurt. And that’s where it calls up its own resources—not artificial aids, picked up outside, but real inner resources, real biological ability to cope, and to turn to account, and to enjoy. That’s the paradox: the only time most people feel alive is when they’re suffering, when something overwhelms their ordinary, careful armour, and the naked child is flung out onto the world. That’s why the things that are worst to undergo are best to remember. But when that child gets buried away under their adaptive and protective shells—he becomes one of the walking dead, a monster. So when you realise you’ve gone a few weeks and haven’t felt that awful struggle of your childish self—struggling to lift itself out of its inadequacy and incompetence—you’ll know you’ve gone some weeks without meeting new challenge, and without growing, and that you’ve gone some weeks towards losing touch with yourself.
Ted Hughes (Letters of Ted Hughes)
Dear friend…' The Witcher swore quietly, looking at the sharp, angular, even runes drawn with energetic sweeps of the pen, faultlessly reflecting the author’s mood. He felt once again the desire to try to bite his own backside in fury. When he was writing to the sorceress a month ago he had spent two nights in a row contemplating how best to begin. Finally, he had decided on “Dear friend.” Now he had his just deserts. 'Dear friend, your unexpected letter – which I received not quite three years after we last saw each other – has given me much joy. My joy is all the greater as various rumours have been circulating about your sudden and violent death. It is a good thing that you have decided to disclaim them by writing to me; it is a good thing, too, that you are doing so so soon. From your letter it appears that you have lived a peaceful, wonderfully boring life, devoid of all sensation. These days such a life is a real privilege, dear friend, and I am happy that you have managed to achieve it. I was touched by the sudden concern which you deigned to show as to my health, dear friend. I hasten with the news that, yes, I now feel well; the period of indisposition is behind me, I have dealt with the difficulties, the description of which I shall not bore you with. It worries and troubles me very much that the unexpected present you received from Fate brings you worries. Your supposition that this requires professional help is absolutely correct. Although your description of the difficulty – quite understandably – is enigmatic, I am sure I know the Source of the problem. And I agree with your opinion that the help of yet another magician is absolutely necessary. I feel honoured to be the second to whom you turn. What have I done to deserve to be so high on your list? Rest assured, my dear friend; and if you had the intention of supplicating the help of additional magicians, abandon it because there is no need. I leave without delay, and go to the place which you indicated in an oblique yet, to me, understandable way. It goes without saying that I leave in absolute secrecy and with great caution. I will surmise the nature of the trouble on the spot and will do all that is in my power to calm the gushing source. I shall try, in so doing, not to appear any worse than other ladies to whom you have turned, are turning or usually turn with your supplications. I am, after all, your dear friend. Your valuable friendship is too important to me to disappoint you, dear friend. Should you, in the next few years, wish to write to me, do not hesitate for a moment. Your letters invariably give me boundless pleasure. Your friend Yennefer' The letter smelled of lilac and gooseberries. Geralt cursed.
Andrzej Sapkowski (Krew elfów (Saga o Wiedźminie, #1))
That's the myth of it, the required lie that allows us to render our judgments. Parasites, criminals, dope fiends, dope peddlers, whores--when we can ride past them at Fayette and Monroe, car doors locked, our field of vision cautiously restricted to the road ahead, then the long journey into darkness is underway. Pale-skinned hillbillies and hard-faced yos, toothless white trash and gold-front gangsters--when we can glide on and feel only fear, we're well on the way. And if, after a time, we can glimpse the spectacle of the corner and manage nothing beyond loathing and contempt, then we've arrived at last at that naked place where a man finally sees the sense in stretching razor wire and building barracks and directing cattle cars into the compound. It's a reckoning of another kind, perhaps, and one that becomes a possibility only through the arrogance and certainty that so easily accompanies a well-planned and well-tended life. We know ourselves, we believe in ourselves; from what we value most, we grant ourselves the illusion that it's not chance in circumstance, that opportunity itself isn't the defining issue. We want the high ground; we want our own worth to be acknowledged. Morality, intelligence, values--we want those things measured and counted. We want it to be about Us. Yes, if we were down there, if we were the damned of the American cities, we would not fail. We would rise above the corner. And when we tell ourselves such things, we unthinkably assume that we would be consigned to places like Fayette Street fully equipped, with all the graces and disciplines, talents and training that we now posses. Our parents would still be our parents, our teachers still our teachers, our broker still our broker. Amid the stench of so much defeat and despair, we would kick fate in the teeth and claim our deserved victory. We would escape to live the life we were supposed to live, the life we are living now. We would be saved, and as it always is in matters of salvation, we know this as a matter of perfect, pristine faith. Why? The truth is plain: We were not born to be niggers.
David Simon (The Corner: A Year in the Life of an Inner-City Neighborhood)
Life is like the big wheel at Luna Park. You pay five francs and go into a room with tiers of seats all around, and in the centre the floor is made of a great disc of polished wood that revolves quickly. At first you sit down and watch the others. They are all trying to sit in the wheel, and they keep getting flung off, and that makes them laugh too. It's great fun. You see, the nearer you can get to the hub of the wheel the slower it is moving and the easier it is to stay on. There's generally someone in the centre who stands up and sometimes does a sort of dance. Often he's paid by the management, though, or, at any rate, he's allowed in free. Of course at the very centre there's a point completely at rest, if one could only find it; I'm not very near that point myself. Of course the professional men get in the way. Lots of people just enjoy scrambling on and being whisked off and scrambling on again. How they all shriek and giggle! Then there are others, like Margot, who sit as far out as they can and hold on for dear life and enjoy that. But the whole point about the wheel is that you needn't get on it at all, if you don't want to. People get hold of ideas about life, and that makes them think they've got to join in the game, even if they don't enjoy it. It doesn't suit everyone. People don't see that when they say "life" they mean two different things. They can mean simply existence, with its physiological implications of growth and organic change. They can't escape that - even by death, but because that's inevitable they think the other idea of life is too - the scrambling and excitement and bumps and the effort to get to the middle, and when we do get to the middle, it's just as if we never started. It's so odd. Now you're a person who was clearly meant to stay in the seats and sit still and if you get bored watch the others. Somehow you got on to the wheel, and you got thrown off again at once with a hard bump. It's all right for Margot, who can cling on, and for me, at the centre, but you're static. Instead of this absurd division into sexes they ought to class people as static and dynamic. There's a real distinction there, though I can't tell you how it comes. I think we're probably two quite different species spiritually.
Evelyn Waugh (Decline and Fall)
I feel to that the gap between my new life in New York and the situation at home in Africa is stretching into a gulf, as Zimbabwe spirals downwards into a violent dictatorship. My head bulges with the effort to contain both worlds. When I am back in New York, Africa immediately seems fantastical – a wildly plumaged bird, as exotic as it is unlikely. Most of us struggle in life to maintain the illusion of control, but in Africa that illusion is almost impossible to maintain. I always have the sense there that there is no equilibrium, that everything perpetually teeters on the brink of some dramatic change, that society constantly stands poised for some spasm, some tsunami in which you can do nothing but hope to bob up to the surface and not be sucked out into a dark and hungry sea. The origin of my permanent sense of unease, my general foreboding, is probably the fact that I have lived through just such change, such a sudden and violent upending of value systems. In my part of Africa, death is never far away. With more Zimbabweans dying in their early thirties now, mortality has a seat at every table. The urgent, tugging winds themselves seem to whisper the message, memento mori, you too shall die. In Africa, you do not view death from the auditorium of life, as a spectator, but from the edge of the stage, waiting only for your cue. You feel perishable, temporary, transient. You feel mortal. Maybe that is why you seem to live more vividly in Africa. The drama of life there is amplified by its constant proximity to death. That’s what infuses it with tension. It is the essence of its tragedy too. People love harder there. Love is the way that life forgets that it is terminal. Love is life’s alibi in the face of death. For me, the illusion of control is much easier to maintain in England or America. In this temperate world, I feel more secure, as if change will only happen incrementally, in manageable, finely calibrated, bite-sized portions. There is a sense of continuity threaded through it all: the anchor of history, the tangible presence of antiquity, of buildings, of institutions. You live in the expectation of reaching old age. At least you used to. But on Tuesday, September 11, 2001, those two states of mind converge. Suddenly it feels like I am back in Africa, where things can be taken away from you at random, in a single violent stroke, as quick as the whip of a snake’s head. Where tumult is raised with an abruptness that is as breathtaking as the violence itself.
Peter Godwin (When a Crocodile Eats the Sun: A Memoir of Africa)
Folding her arms and closing her eyes, Hatsumi sank back into the corner of the seat. Her small gold earrings caught the light as the taxi swayed. Her midnight blue dress seemed to have been made to match the darkness of the cab. Every now and then her thinly daubed, beautifully formed lips would quiver slightly as if she had caught herself on the verge of talking to herself. Watching her, I could see why Nagasawa had chosen her as his special companion. There were any number of women more beautiful than Hatsumi, and Nagasawa could have made any of them his. But Hatsumi had some quality that could send a tremor through your heart. It was nothing forceful. The power she exerted was a subtle thing, but it called forth deep resonances. I watched her all the way to Shibuya, and wondered, without ever finding an answer, what this emotional reverberation that I was feeling could be. It finally hit me some dozen or so years later. I had come to Santa Fe to interview a painter and was sitting in a local pizza parlor, drinking beer and eating pizza and watching a miraculously beautiful sunset. Everything was soaked in brilliant red—my hand, the plate, the table, the world—as if some special kind of fruit juice had splashed down on everything. In the midst of this overwhelming sunset, the image of Hatsumi flashed into my mind, and in that moment I understood what that tremor of the heart had been. It was a kind of childhood longing that had always remained—and would forever remain—unfulfilled. I had forgotten the existence of such innocent, all-but-seared-in longing: forgotten for years to remember what such feelings had ever existed inside of me. What Hatsumi had stirred in me was a part of my very self that had long lain dormant. And when the realization struck me, it aroused such sorrow I almost burst into tears. She had been an absolutely special woman. Someone should have done something—anything—to save her. But neither Nagasawa nor I could have managed that. As so many of those I knew had done, Hatsumi reached a certain stage in her life and decided—almost on the spur of the moment—to end it. Two years after Nagasawa left for Germany, she married, and two years after that she slashed her wrists with a razor blade. It was Nagasawa, of course, who told me what had happened. His letter from Bonn said this: “Hatsumi’s death has extinguished something. This is unbearably sad and painful, even to me.” I ripped his letter to shreds and threw it away. I never wrote to him again.
Haruki Murakami (Norwegian Wood)
Keep his mind on the inner life. He thinks his conversion is something inside him, and his attention is therefore chiefly turned at present to the state of his own mind--or rather to that very expurgated version of them which is all you should allow him to see. Encourage this. Keep his mind off the most elementary duties of directing it to the most advanced and spiritual ones. Aggravate the most useful human characteristics, the horror and neglect of the obvious. You must bring him to a condition in which he can practise self-examination for an hour without discovering any of those facts about himself which are perfectly clear to anyone who has ever lived in the same house with him or worked in the same office. 2. It is, no doubt, impossible to prevent his praying for his mother, but we have means of rendering the prayers innocuous. Make sure that they are always very 'spiritual', that is is always concerned with the state of her soul and never with her rhuematism. Two advantages will follow. In the first place, his attention will be kept on what he regards are her sins, by which, with a little guidance from you, he can be induced to mean any of her actions which are inconvenient or irritating to himself. Thus you can keep rubbing the wounds of the day a little sorer even while he is on his knees; the operation is not at all difficult and you will find it very entertaining. In the second place, since his ideas about her soul will be very crude and often erroneous, he will, in some degree, be praying for an imaginary person, and it will be your task to make that imaginary person daily less and less like the real mother--the sharp-tongued old lady at the breakfast table. In time you may get the cleavage so wide that no thought or feeling from his prayers for the imagined mother will ever flow over into his treatment of the real one. I have had patients of my own so well in hand that they could be turned at a moment's notice from impassioned prayer for a wife's or son's soul to beating or insulting the real wife or son without any qualm. 3. When two humans have lived together for many years it usually happens that each has tones of voice and expressions of face whice are almost unedurably irritating to the other. Work on that. Bring fully into the consciousness of your patient that particular lift of his mother's eyebrows which he learned to dislike in the nursery, and let him think how much he dislikes it. Let him assume that she knows how annoying it is and does it to annoy--if you know your job he will not notice the immense improbablity of the assumption. And, of course, never let him suspect that he has tones and looks which similarly annoy her. As he cannot see or hear himself, this is easily managed.
C.S. Lewis (The Screwtape Letters)
10 ways to raise a wild child. Not everyone wants to raise wild, free thinking children. But for those of you who do, here's my tips: 1. Create safe space for them to be outside for a least an hour a day. Preferable barefoot & muddy. 2. Provide them with toys made of natural materials. Silks, wood, wool, etc...Toys that encourage them to use their imagination. If you're looking for ideas, Google: 'Waldorf Toys'. Avoid noisy plastic toys. Yea, maybe they'll learn their alphabet from the talking toys, but at the expense of their own unique thoughts. Plastic toys that talk and iPads in cribs should be illegal. Seriously! 3. Limit screen time. If you think you can manage video game time and your kids will be the rare ones that don't get addicted, then go for it. I'm not that good so we just avoid them completely. There's no cable in our house and no video games. The result is that my kids like being outside cause it's boring inside...hah! Best plan ever! No kid is going to remember that great day of video games or TV. Send them outside! 4. Feed them foods that support life. Fluoride free water, GMO free organic foods, snacks free of harsh preservatives and refined sugars. Good oils that support healthy brain development. Eat to live! 5. Don't helicopter parent. Stay connected and tuned into their needs and safety, but don't hover. Kids like adults need space to roam and explore without the constant voice of an adult telling them what to do. Give them freedom! 6. Read to them. Kids don't do what they are told, they do what they see. If you're on your phone all the time, they will likely be doing the same thing some day. If you're reading, writing and creating your art (painting, cooking...whatever your art is) they will likely want to join you. It's like Emilie Buchwald said, "Children become readers in the laps of their parents (or guardians)." - it's so true! 7. Let them speak their truth. Don't assume that because they are young that you know more than them. They were born into a different time than you. Give them room to respectfully speak their mind and not feel like you're going to attack them. You'll be surprised what you might learn. 8. Freedom to learn. I realize that not everyone can homeschool, but damn, if you can, do it! Our current schools system is far from the best ever. Our kids deserve better. We simply can't expect our children to all learn the same things in the same way. Not every kid is the same. The current system does not support the unique gifts of our children. How can they with so many kids in one classroom. It's no fault of the teachers, they are doing the best they can. Too many kids and not enough parent involvement. If you send your kids to school and expect they are getting all they need, you are sadly mistaken. Don't let the public school system raise your kids, it's not their job, it's yours! 9. Skip the fear based parenting tactics. It may work short term. But the long term results will be devastating to the child's ability to be open and truthful with you. Children need guidance, but scaring them into listening is just lazy. Find new ways to get through to your kids. Be creative! 10. There's no perfect way to be a parent, but there's a million ways to be a good one. Just because every other parent is doing it, doesn't mean it's right for you and your child. Don't let other people's opinions and judgments influence how you're going to treat your kid. Be brave enough to question everything until you find what works for you. Don't be lazy! Fight your urge to be passive about the things that matter. Don't give up on your kid. This is the most important work you'll ever do. Give it everything you have.
Brooke Hampton