Mastering The Art Of War Quotes

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We’re all pros already. 1) We show up every day 2) We show up no matter what 3) We stay on the job all day 4) We are committed over the long haul 5) The stakes for us are high and real 6) We accept remuneration for our labor 7) We do not overidentify with our jobs 8 ) We master the technique of our jobs 9) We have a sense of humor about our jobs 10) We receive praise or blame in the real world
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
The paradox seems to be, as Socrates demonstrated long ago, that the truly free individual is free only to the extent of his own self-mastery. While those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern over them.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
We feed it [Resistance] with power by our fear of it. Master that fear and we conquer Resistance.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
Socrates demonstrated long ago, that the truly free individual is free only to the extent of his own self-mastery. While those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern over them.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Ye elves of hills, brooks, standing lakes and groves, And ye that on the sands with printless foot Do chase the ebbing Neptune and do fly him When he comes back; you demi-puppets that By moonshine do the green sour ringlets make, Whereof the ewe not bites, and you whose pastime Is to make midnight mushrooms, that rejoice To hear the solemn curfew; by whose aid, Weak masters though ye be, I have bedimm’d The noontide sun, call’d forth the mutinous winds, And ‘twixt the green sea and the azured vault Set roaring war: to the dread rattling thunder Have I given fire and rifted Jove’s stout oak With his own bolt; the strong-based promontory Have I made shake and by the spurs pluck’d up The pine and cedar: graves at my command Have waked their sleepers, oped, and let ‘em forth By my so potent art. But this rough magic I here abjure, and, when I have required Some heavenly music, which even now I do, To work mine end upon their senses that This airy charm is for, I’ll break my staff, Bury it certain fathoms in the earth, And deeper than did ever plummet sound I’ll drown my book.
William Shakespeare (The Tempest)
Despite all my public misconduct, in the past year, I had learned the Elemental spells, the Doppelschläferin, and the preparation and flying of a magic broom; I had survived two months as prisoner of war, saving the life of captain Johanne in the process; I had escaped the dungeons of Fortress Drachensbett, and after an arduous journey successfully reunited with my double, so preserving her, and all Montagne, from Prince Flonian's rapacity, I would somehow master the despicable art of being a princess.
Catherine Gilbert Murdock (Princess Ben)
Being Wise & Being Smart are two different things anyone can be smart but those who master the art of knowing what to overlook in this journey called life deserves to be called Wise
Abhysheq Shukla (KISS Life "Life is what you make it")
The professional dedicates himself to mastering technique not because he believes technique is a substitute for inspiration but because he wants to be in possession of the full arsenal of skills when inspiration does come.
Steven Pressfield (The War Of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
Using order to deal with the disorderly, using calm to deal with the clamorous, is mastering the heart.
Sun Tzu (The Art of War: Complete Texts and Commentaries)
You are 'the best of cut-throats:'--do not start; The phrase is Shakespeare's, and not misapplied:-- War's a brain-spattering, windpipe-slitting art, Unless her cause by Right be sanctified. If you have acted once a generous part, The World, not the World's masters, will decide, And I shall be delighted to learn who, Save you and yours, have gained by Waterloo? I am no flatterer--you've supped full of flattery: They say you like it too--'tis no great wonder: He whose whole life has been assault and battery, At last may get a little tired of thunder; And swallowing eulogy much more than satire, he May like being praised for every lucky blunder; Called 'Saviour of the Nations'--not yet saved, And Europe's Liberator--still enslaved. I've done. Now go and dine from off the plate Presented by the Prince of the Brazils, And send the sentinel before your gate A slice or two from your luxurious meals: He fought, but has not fed so well of late...
Lord Byron (Don Juan)
Resistance has no strength of its own. Every ounce of juice it possesses comes from us. We feed it with power by our fear of it. Master that fear and we conquer Resistance.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Leaders worth following inspire their people not just with clear direction, but with a unified purpose and passionate commitment to a cause:
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
Master Sun A military operation involves deception. Even though you are competent, appear to be incompetent. Though effective, appear to be ineffective.
Sun Tzu (The Art of War: Complete Texts and Commentaries)
Martial arts is no more complicated than pure physics. If that confuses you, then simply take the advice of the grand masters. Don’t ask questions. Just obey.
R.F. Kuang (The Poppy War (The Poppy War, #1))
Master Sun So it is said that if you know others and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles; if you do not know others but know yourself, you win one and lose one; if you do not know others and do not know yourself, you will be imperiled in every single battle.
Sun Tzu (The Art of War: Complete Texts and Commentaries)
So morning energy is keen, midday energy slumps, evening energy recedes—therefore those skilled in use of arms avoid the keen energy and strike the slumping and receding. These are those who master energy.
Sun Tzu (The Art of War: Complete Texts and Commentaries)
She became uncontrollable and violent, succumbing to a greater depth of evilness than any Night Empian had ever seen. She turned on us, one by one, taking men away for her own torture and pleasure...an art she mastered well. She claimed she only wanted to keep the Night Empians in line and strengthen them. But she opened a more dangerous depth to the Night Empians psyche that not even the Dark Guardian was able to reach.
Marie Montine (Mourning Grey: Part Three The Guardians Of The Temple Saga)
The professional respects his craft. He does not consider himself superior to it. He recognizes the contributions of those who have gone before him. He apprentices himself to them. The professional dedicates himself to mastering technique not because he believes technique is a substitute for inspiration but because he wants to be in possession of the full arsenal of skills when inspiration does come. The professional is sly. He knows that by toiling beside the front door of technique, he leaves room for genius to enter by the back.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
The professional dedicates himself to mastering technique not because he believes technique is a substitute for inspiration but because he wants to be in possession of the full arsenal of skills when inspiration does come. The professional is sly. He knows that by toiling beside the front door of technique, he leaves room for genius to enter by the back.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Like Montgomery, Musashi was a physically aggressive man who devoted his entire life to mastering the art of war. Also like Montgomery, Musashi was an independent thinker who believed a warrior needed to have a well-rounded intellectual background in order to truly master strategy.
Zita Steele (Bernard Montgomery's Art of War)
The amateur has not mastered the technique of his art. Nor does he expose himself to judgment in the real world. If we show our poem to our friend and our friend says, “It’s wonderful, I love it,” that’s not real-world feedback, that’s our friend being nice to us. Nothing is as empowering as real-world validation, even if it’s for failure.
Steven Pressfield (The War Of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
To the Sith, violence was an art form. To Master Satele, it seemed like life itself.
Sean Williams (Fatal Alliance (Star Wars: The Old Republic, #3))
Take calculated risks. That is quite different from being rash. —GENERAL GEORGE S. PATTON, COMMANDER OF THE U.S. THIRD ARMY IN WORLD WAR II
Josh Kaufman (The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business)
just as water retains no constant shape, so in warfare there are no constant conditions.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
Identify and follow the trends in your industry. Don’t fight against the current of change. Instead, recognize these as an opportunity and seize the advantage.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
We master the technique of our jobs.
Steven Pressfield (The War Of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
While those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern over them.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Creative destruction is our middle name, both within our own society and abroad. We tear down the old order every day, from business to science, literature, art, architecture, and cinema to politics and the law … . They must attack us in order to survive, just as we must destroy them to advance our historic mission. —Michael Ledeen, The War Against the Terror Masters, 2002
Naomi Klein (The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism)
When I sat down with one of my senior professors in Durban, South Africa to talk about my Master’s thesis, he asked me why I wanted to write about women resistance fighters. “Because women made up twenty percent of the ANC’s militant wing!” I gushed. “Twenty percent! When I found that out I couldn’t believe it. And you know – women have never been part of fighting forces –” The Huntress The Huntress, art by S. Ross Browne He interrupted me. “Women have always fought,” he said. “What?” I said. “Women have always fought,” he said. “Shaka Zulu had an all-female force of fighters. Women have been part of every resistance movement. Women dressed as men and went to war, went to sea, and participated actively in combat for as long as there have been people.
Kameron Hurley
PROFESSIONAL DEDICATES HIMSELF TO MASTERING TECHNIQUE The professional respects his craft. He does not consider himself superior to it. He recognizes the contributions of those who have gone before him. He apprentices himself to them. The professional dedicates himself to mastering technique not because he believes technique is a substitute for inspiration but because he wants to be in possession of the full arsenal of skills when inspiration does come. The professional is sly. He knows that by toiling beside the front door of technique, he leaves room for genius to enter by the back.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
In asking me to contribute a mite to the memorial to Gutenberg you give me pleasure and do me honor. The world concedes without hesitation or dispute that Gutenberg’s invention is incomparably the mightiest event that has ever happened in profane history. It created a new and wonderful earth, and along with it a new hell. It has added new details, new developments and new marvels to both in every year during five centuries. It found Truth walking, and gave it a pair of wings; it found Falsehood trotting, and gave it two pair. It found Science hiding in corners and hunted; it has given it the freedom of the land, the seas and the skies, and made it the world’s welcome quest. It found the arts and occupations few, it multiplies them every year. It found the inventor shunned and despised, it has made him great and given him the globe for his estate. It found religion a master and an oppression, it has made it man’s friend and benefactor. It found War comparatively cheap but inefficient, it has made it dear but competent. It has set peoples free, and other peoples it has enslaved; it is the father and protector of human liberty, and it has made despotisms possible where they were not possible before. Whatever the world is, today, good and bad together, that is what Gutenberg’s invention has made it: for from that source it has all come. But he has our homage; for what he said to the reproaching angel in his dream has come true, and the evil wrought through his mighty invention is immeasurably outbalanced by the good it has brought to the race of men.
Mark Twain
A prince ought to have no other aim or thought, nor select anything else for his study, than war and its rules and discipline; for this is the sole art that belongs to him who rules, and it is of such force that it not only upholds those who are born princes, but it often enables men to rise from a private station to that rank. And, on the contrary, it is seen that when princes have thought more of ease than of arms they have lost their states. And the first cause of your losing it is to neglect this art; and what enables you to acquire a state is to be master of the art.
Niccolò Machiavelli
MASTER SUN There are only five notes in the musical scale, but their variations are so many that they cannot all be heard. There are only five basic colors, but their variations are so many that they cannot all be seen. There are only five basic flavors, but their variations are so many that they cannot all be tasted. There are only two kinds of charge in battle, the unorthodox surprise attack and the orthodox direct attack, but variations of the unorthodox and the orthodox are endless. The unorthodox and the orthodox give rise to each other, like a beginningless circle—who could exhaust them? M
Sun Tzu (The Art of War (Shambhala Library))
Nor did she understand the attitude of the armed forces, most of whom came from the middle and working class and had traditionally been closer to the left than to the far right. She did not understand the state of civil war, nor did she realize that war is the soldiers’ work of art, the culmination of all their training, the gold medal of their profession. Soldiers are not made to shine in times of peace. The coup gave them a chance to put into practice what they had learned in their barracks: blind obedience, the use of arms, and other skills that soldiers can master once they silence the scruples of their hearts.
Isabel Allende (The House of the Spirits)
Certainly I wouldn't be writing this book, on this subject, if living with freedom were easy. The paradox seems to be, as Socrates demonstrated long ago, that the truly free individual is free only to the extent of his own self-mastery. While those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern over them.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Small-business leaders need all the friends we can get. It’s much better business to develop loyal associates and friends, and even develop exclusive relationships, when possible, so the best performers won’t provide services or supplies to your competitors. Make enemies of them, and they’ll want to help your competitors. They’ll even be driven to do so.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
though she isn’t stupid at all. “Wow, other people are mastering this, even people who were as clueless as I was in the beginning, and I just can’t seem to learn to think in this manner.” 5. Caroline Sacks was experiencing what is called “relative deprivation,” a term coined by the sociologist Samuel Stouffer during the Second World War. Stouffer was commissioned by the U.S. Army to examine the attitudes and morale of American soldiers, and he ended up studying half a million men and women, looking at everything from how soldiers viewed their commanding officers to how black soldiers felt they were being treated to how difficult soldiers found it to serve in isolated outposts. But one set of questions Stouffer asked stood out. He quizzed both
Malcolm Gladwell (David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants)
.... I realized that my mother had taught me above all to become as invisible as possible, or at least to transform myself into a shadow so that no one would attack me, to pass through walls and melt into my surroundings. She insisted that in the art of war, the first lesson consisted of mastering one's disappearance, which was at the same time the best attack and the best defense.
Kim Thúy (Vi)
What is ki?' Niang blushed. 'Um. Inner energy. Spiritual energy?' 'Spiritual energy,' Master Jun repeated. He snorted. 'Village nonsense. Those who elevate ki to the level of mystery or the supernatural do a great disservice to martial arts. Ki is nothing but plain energy. The same energy that flows through your lungs and blood vessels. The same energy that moves rivers downstream and causes the wind to blow.
R.F. Kuang (The Poppy War (The Poppy War, #1))
The earliest storytellers were magi, seers, bards, griots, shamans. They were, it would seem, as old as time, and as terrifying to gaze upon as the mysteries with which they wrestled. They wrestled with mysteries and transformed them into myths which coded the world and helped the community to live through one more darkness, with eyes wide open and hearts set alight. "I can see them now, the old masters. I can see them standing on the other side of the flames, speaking in the voices of lions, or thunder, or monsters, or heroes, heroines, or the earth, or fire itself -- for they had to contain all voices within them, had to be all things and nothing. They had to have the ability to become lightning, to become a future homeland, to be the dreaded guide to the fabled land where the community will settle and fructify. They had to be able to fight in advance all the demons they would encounter, and summon up all the courage needed on the way, to prophesy about all the requisite qualities that would ensure their arrival at the dreamt-of land. "The old masters had to be able to tell stories that would make sleep possible on those inhuman nights, stories that would counter terror with enchantment, or with a greater terror. I can see them, beyond the flames, telling of a hero's battle with a fabulous beast -- the beast that is in the hero." "The storyteller's art changed through the ages. From battling dread in word and incantations before their people did in reality, they became the repositories of the people's wisdom and follies. Often, conscripted by kings, they became the memory of a people's origins, and carried with them the long line of ancestries and lineages. Most important of all, they were the living libraries, the keepers of legends and lore. They knew the causes and mutations of things, the herbs, trees, plants, cures for diseases, causes for wars, causes of victory, the ways in which victory often precipitates defeat, or defeat victory, the lineages of gods, the rites humans have to perform to the gods. They knew of follies and restitutions, were advocates of new and old ways of being, were custodians of culture, recorders of change." "These old storytellers were the true magicians. They were humanity's truest friends and most reliable guides. Their role was both simple and demanding. They had to go down deep into the seeds of time, into the dreams of their people, into the unconscious, into the uncharted fears, and bring shapes and moods back up into the light. They had to battle with monsters before they told us about them. They had to see clearly." "They risked their sanity and their consciousness in the service of dreaming better futures. They risked madness, or being unmoored in the wild realms of the interspaces, or being devoured by the unexpected demons of the communal imagination." "And I think that now, in our age, in the mid-ocean of our days, with certainties collapsing around us, and with no beliefs by which to steer our way through the dark descending nights ahead -- I think that now we need those fictional old bards and fearless storytellers, those seers. We need their magic, their courage, their love, and their fire more than ever before. It is precisely in a fractured, broken age that we need mystery and a reawoken sense of wonder. We need them to be whole again.
Ben Okri (A Way of Being Free)
One time, over half of my warlords refused to attend a summit because I had failed to properly address them by the decorative titles my father had doled out like candy after the war: Minister of Horses, Master of Archery, Commissioner of Arts. Titles that had no weight in the council, because to be part of the council one actually needed to do some work. The warlords didn’t even have the decency to inform me they felt slighted. If I had known they would throw such massive sulks beforehand, I would’ve gone and made up extra titles just to please them. I’ve always wanted to use Secretary of the Dung Heap.
K.S. Villoso (The Wolf of Oren-Yaro (Chronicles of the Bitch Queen, #1))
Fundamentalism is the philosophy of the powerless, the conquered, the displaced and the dispossessed. Its spawning ground is the wreckage of political and military defeat, as Hebrew fundamentalism arose during the Babylonian captivity, as white Christian fundamentalism appeared in the American South during Reconstruction, as the notion of the Master Race evolved in Germany following World War I. In such desperate times, the vanquished race would perish without a doctrine that restored hope and pride. Islamic fundamentalism ascends from the same landscape of despair and possesses the same tremendous and potent appeal.
Steven Pressfield (The War Of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
The dignity and energy of the Roman character, conspicuous in war and in politics, were not easily tamed and adjusted to the arts of industry and literature. The degenerate and pliant Greeks, on the contrary, excelled in the handicraft and polite professions. We learn from the vigorous invective of Juvenal that they were the most useful and capable of servants, whether as pimps or professors of rhetoric. Obsequious, dextrous and ready, the versatile Greeks monopolized the business of teaching, publishing and manufacturing in the Roman Empire, allowing their masters ample leisure for the service of the State, in the Senate or on the field.
The Richmond Enquirer 1850s
These are serious fears. But they're not the real fear. Not the Master Fear, the Mother of all Fears that's so close to us that even when we verbalize it we don't believe it. Fear That We Will Succeed. That we can access the powers we secretly know we possess. That we can become the person we sense in our hearts we truly are. This is the most terrifying prospect a human being can face, because it ejects him at one go (he imagines) from all the tribal inclusions his psyche is wired for and has been for fifty million years. We fear discovering that we are more than we think we are. More than our parents/children/teachers think we are. We fear that we actually possess the talent that our still, small voice tells us. That we actually have the guts, the perseverance, the capacity. We fear that we truly can steer our ship, plant our flag, reach our Promised Land. We fear this because, if it's true, then we become estranged from all we know. We pass through a membrane. We become monsters and monstrous. We know that if we embrace our ideals, we must prove worthy of them. And that scares the hell out of us. What will become of us? We will lose our friends and family, who will no longer recognize us. We will wind up alone, in the cold void of starry space, with nothing and no one to hold on to. Of course this is exactly what happens. But here's the trick. We wind up in space, but not alone. Instead we are tapped into an unquenchable, undepletable, inexhaustible source of wisdom, consciousness, companionship. Yeah, we lose friends. But we find friends too, in places we never thought to look. And they're better friends, truer friends. And we're better and truer to them. Do you believe me?
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Fundamentalism is the philosophy of the powerless, the conquered, the displaced and the dispossessed. Its spawning ground is the wreckage of political and military defeat, as Hebrew fundamentalism arose during the Babylonian captivity, as white Christian fundamentalism appeared in the American South during Reconstruction, as the notion of the Master Race evolved in Germany following World War I. In such desperate times, the vanquished race would perish without a doctrine that restored hope and pride. Islamic fundamentalism ascends from the same landscape of despair and possesses the same tremendous and potent appeal. What exactly is this despair? It is the despair of freedom. The dislocation and emasculation experienced by the individual cut free from the familiar and comforting structures of the tribe and the clan, the village and the family. It is the state of modern life. The
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Thank you for checking on me. You even wore your sword.” Alric looked down. “I didn’t know what beast or scoundrel might be attacking the princess. I had to come prepared to do battle.” “Can you even draw that thing?” He frowned at her again. “Oh, quit it, will you? They say I fought masterfully in the Battle of Medford.” “Masterfully?” He struggled to stop himself from smiling. “Yes, some might even say heroically. In fact, I believe some did say heroically.” “You’ve watched that silly play too many times.” “It’s good theater, and I like to support the arts.” “The arts.” She rolled her eyes. “You just like it because it makes all the girls swoon and you love all the attention.” “Well…” He shrugged guiltily. “Don’t deny it! I’ve seen you with a crowd of them circling like vultures and you grinning and strutting around like the prize bull at the fair. Do you make a list? Does Julian send them to your chambers by hair color, height, or merely in alphabetical order?” “It’s not like that.” “You know, you do have to get married, and the sooner, the better. You have a lineage to protect. Kings who don’t produce heirs cause civil wars.
Michael J. Sullivan (Heir of Novron (The Riyria Revelations, #5-6))
Separated from everyone, in the fifteenth dungeon, was a small man with fiery brown eyes and wet towels wrapped around his head. For several days his legs had been black, and his gums were bleeding. Fifty-nine years old and exhausted beyond measure, he paced silently up and down, always the same five steps, back and forth. One, two, three, four, five, and turn . . . an interminable shuffle between the wall and door of his cell. He had no work, no books, nothing to write on. And so he walked. One, two, three, four, five, and turn . . . His dungeon was next door to La Fortaleza, the governor’s mansion in Old San Juan, less than two hundred feet away. The governor had been his friend and had even voted for him for the Puerto Rican legislature in 1932. This didn’t help much now. The governor had ordered his arrest. One, two, three, four, five, and turn . . . Life had turned him into a pendulum; it had all been mathematically worked out. This shuttle back and forth in his cell comprised his entire universe. He had no other choice. His transformation into a living corpse suited his captors perfectly. One, two, three, four, five, and turn . . . Fourteen hours of walking: to master this art of endless movement, he’d learned to keep his head down, hands behind his back, stepping neither too fast nor too slow, every stride the same length. He’d also learned to chew tobacco and smear the nicotined saliva on his face and neck to keep the mosquitoes away. One, two, three, four, five, and turn . . . The heat was so stifling, he needed to take off his clothes, but he couldn’t. He wrapped even more towels around his head and looked up as the guard’s shadow hit the wall. He felt like an animal in a pit, watched by the hunter who had just ensnared him. One, two, three, four, five, and turn . . . Far away, he could hear the ocean breaking on the rocks of San Juan’s harbor and the screams of demented inmates as they cried and howled in the quarantine gallery. A tropical rain splashed the iron roof nearly every day. The dungeons dripped with a stifling humidity that saturated everything, and mosquitoes invaded during every rainfall. Green mold crept along the cracks of his cell, and scarab beetles marched single file, along the mold lines, and into his bathroom bucket. The murderer started screaming. The lunatic in dungeon seven had flung his own feces over the ceiling rail. It landed in dungeon five and frightened the Puerto Rico Upland gecko. The murderer, of course, was threatening to kill the lunatic. One, two, three, four, five, and turn . . . The man started walking again. It was his only world. The grass had grown thick over the grave of his youth. He was no longer a human being, no longer a man. Prison had entered him, and he had become the prison. He fought this feeling every day. One, two, three, four, five, and turn . . . He was a lawyer, journalist, chemical engineer, and president of the Nationalist Party. He was the first Puerto Rican to graduate from Harvard College and Harvard Law School and spoke six languages. He had served as a first lieutenant in World War I and led a company of two hundred men. He had served as president of the Cosmopolitan Club at Harvard and helped Éamon de Valera draft the constitution of the Free State of Ireland.5 One, two, three, four, five, and turn . . . He would spend twenty-five years in prison—many of them in this dungeon, in the belly of La Princesa. He walked back and forth for decades, with wet towels wrapped around his head. The guards all laughed, declared him insane, and called him El Rey de las Toallas. The King of the Towels. His name was Pedro Albizu Campos.
Nelson A. Denis (War Against All Puerto Ricans: Revolution and Terror in America's Colony)
For nearly eight centuries, under her Mohammedan rulers, Spain set to all Europe a shining example of a civilized and enlightened State. Her fertile provinces, rendered doubly prolific by the industry and engineering skill of her conquerors, bore fruit an hundredfold. Cities innumerable sprang up in the rich valleys of the Guadelquivir and the Guadiana, whose names, and names only, still commemorate the vanished glories of their past. Art, literature, and science prospered, as they then prospered nowhere else in Europe. Students flocked from France and Germany and England to drink from the fountain of learning which flowed only in the cities of the Moors. The surgeons and doctors of Andalusia were in the van of science: women were encouraged to devote themselves to serious study, and the lady doctor was not unknown among the people of Cordova. Mathematics, astronomy and botany, history, philosophy and jurisprudence were to be mastered in Spain, and Spain alone. The practical work of the field, the scientific methods of irrigation, the arts of fortification and shipbuilding, the highest and most elaborate products of the loom, the graver and the hammer, the potter's wheel and the mason's trowel, were brought to perfection by the Spanish Moors. In the practice of war no less than in the arts of peace they long stood supreme.
Stanley Lane-Poole (The Story of the Moors in Spain (1886) [Illustrated])
Now, insurrection is an art quite as much as war or any other, and subject to certain rules of proceeding, which, when neglected, will produce the ruin of the party neglecting them. Those rules, logical deductions from the nature of the parties and the circumstances one has to deal with in such a case, are so plain and simple that the short experience of 1848 had made the Germans pretty well acquainted with them. Firstly, never play with insurrection unless you are fully prepared to face the consequences of your play. Insurrection is a calculus with very indefinite magnitudes, the value of which may change every day; the forces opposed to you have all the advantage of organization, discipline, and habitual authority: unless you bring strong odds against them you are defeated and ruined. Secondly, the insurrectionary career once entered upon, act with the greatest determination, and on the offensive. The defensive is the death of every armed rising; it is lost before it measures itself with its enemies. Surprise your antagonists while their forces are scattering, prepare new successes, however small, but daily; keep up the moral ascendancy which the first successful rising has given to you; rally those vacillating elements to your side which always follow the strongest impulse, and which always look out for the safer side; force your enemies to a retreat before they can collect their strength against you; in the words of Danton, the greatest master of revolutionary policy yet known, de l'audace, de l'audace, encore de l'audace!
Karl Marx
Chinese seek victory not in a decisive battle but through incremental moves designed to gradually improve their position. To quote Kissinger again: “Rarely did Chinese statesmen risk the outcome of a conflict on a single all-or-nothing clash: elaborate multi-year maneuvers were closer to their style. Where the Western tradition prized the decisive clash of forces emphasizing feats of heroism, the Chinese ideal stressed subtlety, indirection, and the patient accumulation of relative advantage.”48 In an instructive analogy, David Lai illustrates this by comparing the game of chess with its Chinese equivalent, weiqi—often referred to as go. In chess, players seek to dominate the center and conquer the opponent. In weiqi, players seek to surround the opponent. If the chess master sees five or six moves ahead, the weiqi master sees twenty or thirty. Attending to every dimension in the broader relationship with the adversary, the Chinese strategist resists rushing prematurely toward victory, instead aiming to build incremental advantage. “In the Western tradition, there is a heavy emphasis on the use of force; the art of war is largely limited to the battlefields; and the way to fight is force on force,” Lai explains. By contrast, “The philosophy behind go is to compete for relative gain rather than seeking complete annihilation of the opponent forces.” In a wise reminder, Lai warns that “It is dangerous to play go with the chess mindset. One can become overly aggressive so that he will stretch his force thin and expose his vulnerable parts in the battlefields.
Graham Allison (Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydides's Trap?)
To the infra-human specimens of this benighted scientific age the ritual and worship connected with the art of healing as practiced at Epidaurus seems like sheer buncombe. In our world the blind lead the blind and the sick go to the sick to be cured. We are making constant progress, but it is a progress which leads to the operating table, to the poor house, to the insane asylum, to the trenches. We have no healers – we have only butchers whose knowledge of anatomy entitles them to a diploma, which in turn entitles them to carve out or amputate our illnesses so that we may carry on in cripple fashion until such time as we are fit for the slaughterhouse. We announce the discovery of this cure and that but make no mention of the new diseases which we have created en route. The medical cult operates very much like the war office – the triumphs which they broadcast are sops thrown out to conceal death and disaster. The medicos, like the military authorities, are helpless; they are waging a hopeless fight from the start. What man wants is peace in order that he may live. Defeating our neighbor doesn’t give peace any more than curing cancer brings health. Man doesn’t begin to live through triumphing over his enemy nor does he begin to acquire health through endless cures. The joy of life comes through peace, which is not static but dynamic. No man can really say that he knows what joy is until he has experienced peace. And without joy there is no life, even if you have a dozen cars, six butlers, a castle, a private chapel and a bomb-proof vault. Our diseases are our attachments, be they habits, ideologies, ideals, principles, possessions, phobias, gods, cults, religions, what you please. Good wages can be a disease just as much as bad wages. Leisure can be just as great a disease as work. Whatever we cling to, even if it be hope or faith, can be the disease which carries us off. Surrender is absolute: if you cling to even the tiniest crumb you nourish the germ which will devour you. As for clinging to God, God long ago abandoned us in order that we might realize the joy of attaining godhood through our own efforts. All this whimpering that is going on in the dark, this insistent, piteous plea for peace which will grow bigger as the pain and the misery increase, where is it to be found? Peace, do people imagine that it is something to cornered, like corn or wheat? Is it something which can be pounded upon and devoured, as with wolves fighting over a carcass? I hear people talking about peace and their faces are clouded with anger or with hatred or with scorn and disdain, with pride and arrogance. There are people who want to fight to bring about peace- the most deluded souls of all. There will be no peace until murder is eliminated from the heart and mind. Murder is the apex of the broad pyramid whose base is the self. That which stands will have to fall. Everything which man has fought for will have to be relinquished before he can begin to live as man. Up till now he has been a sick beast and even his divinity stinks. He is master of many worlds and in his own he is a slave. What rules the world is the heart, not the brain, in every realm our conquests bring only death. We have turned our backs on the one realm wherein freedom lies. At Epidaurus, in the stillness, in the great peace that came over me, I heard the heart of the world beat. I know what the cure is: it is to give up, to relinquish, to surrender, so that our little hearts may beat in unison with the great heart of the world.
Henry Miller
ever and again we find some leader or some tribe amidst the disorder of free and independent nomads, powerful enough to force a sort of unity upon its kindred tribes, and then woe betide the nearest civilization. Down pour the united nomads on the unwarlike, unarmed plains, and there ensues a war of conquest. Instead of carrying off the booty, the conquerors settle down on the conquered land, which becomes all booty for them; the villagers and townsmen are reduced to servitude and tribute paying, they become hewers of wood and drawers of water, and the leaders of the nomads become kings and princes, masters and aristocrats. They, too, settle down, they learn many of the arts and refinements of the conquered, they cease to be lean and hungry, but for many generations they retain traces of their old nomadic habits, they hunt and indulge in open-air sports, they drive and race chariots, they regard work, especially agricultural work, as the lot of an inferior race and class. This in a thousand variations has been one of the main stories in history for the last seventy centuries or more. In the first history that we can clearly decipher we find already in all the civilized regions a distinction between a non-working ruler class and the working mass of the population. And we find, too, that after some generations, the aristocrat, having settled down, begins to respect the arts and refinements and law-abidingness, of settlement, and to lose something of his original hardihood. He intermarries, he patches up a sort of toleration between conqueror and conquered; he exchanges religious ideas and learns the lessons upon which soil and climate insist. He becomes a part of the civilization he has captured; and as he does so, events gather towards a, fresh invasion by the free adventurers of the outer world. Early
H.G. Wells (The Outline of History (illustrated & annotated))
When a middle school teacher in San Antonio, Texas, named Rick Riordan began thinking about the troublesome kids in his class, he was struck by a topsy-turvy idea. Maybe the wild ones weren’t hyperactive; maybe they were misplaced heroes. After all, in another era the same behavior that is now throttled with Ritalin and disciplinary rap sheets would have been the mark of greatness, the early blooming of a true champion. Riordan played with the idea, imagining the what-ifs. What if strong, assertive children were redirected rather than discouraged? What if there were a place for them, an outdoor training camp that felt like a playground, where they could cut loose with all those natural instincts to run, wrestle, climb, swim, and explore? You’d call it Camp Half-Blood, Riordan decided, because that’s what we really are—half animal and half higher-being, halfway between each and unsure how to keep them in balance. Riordan began writing, creating a troubled kid from a broken home named Percy Jackson who arrives at a camp in the woods and is transformed when the Olympian he has inside is revealed, honed, and guided. Riordan’s fantasy of a hero school actually does exist—in bits and pieces, scattered across the globe. The skills have been fragmented, but with a little hunting, you can find them all. In a public park in Brooklyn, a former ballerina darts into the bushes and returns with a shopping bag full of the same superfoods the ancient Greeks once relied on. In Brazil, a onetime beach huckster is reviving the lost art of natural movement. And in a lonely Arizona dust bowl called Oracle, a quiet genius disappeared into the desert after teaching a few great athletes—and, oddly, Johnny Cash and the Red Hot Chili Peppers—the ancient secret of using body fat as fuel. But the best learning lab of all was a cave on a mountain behind enemy lines—where, during World War II, a band of Greek shepherds and young British amateurs plotted to take on 100,000 German soldiers. They weren’t naturally strong, or professionally trained, or known for their courage. They were wanted men, marked for immediate execution. But on a starvation diet, they thrived. Hunted and hounded, they got stronger. They became such natural born heroes, they decided to follow the lead of the greatest hero of all, Odysseus, and
Christopher McDougall (Natural Born Heroes: Mastering the Lost Secrets of Strength and Endurance)
We are all aware on some level that our physical self will eventually die, that this death is inevitable, and that its inevitability—on some unconscious level—scares the shit out of us. Therefore, in order to compensate for our fear of the inevitable loss of our physical self, we try to construct a conceptual self that will live forever. This is why people try so hard to put their names on buildings, on statues, on spines of books. It’s why we feel compelled to spend so much time giving ourselves to others, especially to children, in the hopes that our influence—our conceptual self—will last way beyond our physical self. That we will be remembered and revered and idolized long after our physical self ceases to exist. Becker called such efforts our “immortality projects,” projects that allow our conceptual self to live on way past the point of our physical death. All of human civilization, he says, is basically a result of immortality projects: the cities and governments and structures and authorities in place today were all immortality projects of men and women who came before us. They are the remnants of conceptual selves that ceased to die. Names like Jesus, Muhammad, Napoleon, and Shakespeare are just as powerful today as when those men lived, if not more so. And that’s the whole point. Whether it be through mastering an art form, conquering a new land, gaining great riches, or simply having a large and loving family that will live on for generations, all the meaning in our life is shaped by this innate desire to never truly die. Religion, politics, sports, art, and technological innovation are the result of people’s immortality projects. Becker argues that wars and revolutions and mass murder occur when one group of people’s immortality projects rub up against another group’s. Centuries of oppression and the bloodshed of millions have been justified as the defense of one group’s immortality project against another’s. But, when our immortality projects fail, when the meaning is lost, when the prospect of our conceptual self outliving our physical self no longer seems possible or likely, death terror—that horrible, depressing anxiety—creeps back into our mind. Trauma can cause this, as can shame and social ridicule. As can, as Becker points out, mental illness. If you haven’t figured it out yet, our immortality projects are our values. They are the barometers of meaning and worth in our life. And when our values fail, so do we, psychologically speaking. What Becker is saying, in essence, is that we’re all driven by fear to give way too many fucks about something, because giving a fuck about something is the only thing that distracts us from the reality and inevitability of our own death. And to truly not give a single fuck is to achieve a quasi-spiritual state of embracing the impermanence of one’s own existence.
Mark Manson (The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life)
The liberal element of Whites are those who have perfected the art of selling themselves to the Negro as a friend of the Negro, getting the sympathy of the Negro, getting the allegiance of the Negro, getting the mind of the Negro, and then the Negro sides with the White liberal and the White liberal uses the Negro against the White conservative so that anything that the Negro does is never for his own good, never for his own advancement, never for his own progress, he’s only a pawn in the hands of the White liberal. The worst enemy the Negro has is this White man who runs around here drooling at the mouth professing to love Negroes and calling himself a liberal and it is following these White liberals that has perpetuated the problems that Negroes in America have. If the Negro wasn’t taken, trapped, tricked, deceived by the White liberal then Negroes would get together and solve our own problems. It was the White liberals that come up with the Civil War, supposedly they say, to solve the Negro, the slave question. Lincoln was supposedly a White liberal. When you read the true history of Lincoln, he wasn’t trying to free any slaves, he was trying to save the union. He was trying to save his own party. He was trying to conserve his own power and it was only after he found he couldn’t do it without freeing the slaves that he came up with the Emancipation Proclamation. So, right there you have deceit of White liberals making Negroes think that the Civil War was fought to free them, you have the deceit of White liberals making Negroes think that the Emancipation Proclamation actually freed the Negroes and then when the Negroes got the Civil War and found out they weren’t free, got the Emancipation Proclamation and they found out they still weren’t free, they begin to get dissatisfied and unrest, they come up with the...the same White liberal came up with the 14th Amendment supposedly to solve the problem. This came about, the problem still wasn’t solved, ‘cause to the White liberal it’s only a political trick. Civil War, political trick, Emancipation Proclamation, political trick, 14th Amendment to this raggedy Constitution, a political trick. Then when Negroes begin to develop intellectually again, and realize that their problem still wasn’t solved, and unrest began to increase, the Supreme Court...another so-called political trick...came up with what they call a Supreme Court Desegregation Decision, and they purposely put it in a language...now you know, sir, that these men on the Supreme Court are masters of the King’s English, masters of legal phraseology, and if they wanted a decision that no one could get around, they would have given one but they gave their Supreme Court Desegregation Decision in 1954 purposely in a language, phraseology that enabled all of the crooks in this country to find loopholes in it that would keep them from having to enforce the Supreme Court Desegregation Decision. So that even after the decision was handed down, our problem has still not been solved. And I only cite these things to show you that in America, the history of the White liberal has been nothing but a series of trickery designed to make Negroes think that the White liberals was going to solve our problem and it is only now that the honorable Elijah Muhammad has come on the scene and is beginning to teach the Black man that our problem will never be solved by the White man that the only way our problem will be solved is when the Black man wakes up, cleans himself up, stands on his own feet, stops begging the White man and takes immediate steps to try and do for ourselves the things that we’ve been waiting for the White man to do for us. Once we do them for ourselves, once we think for ourselves, once we see for ourselves then we’ll be able to solve our own problems and we’ll be recognized as human beings all over this earth.
Malcolm X
Resistance feeds on fear. We experience Resistance as fear. But fear of what?   Fear of the consequences of following our heart. Fear of bankruptcy, fear of poverty, fear of insolvency. Fear of groveling when we try to make it on our own, and of groveling when we give up and come crawling back to where we started. Fear of being selfish, of being rotten wives or disloyal husbands; fear of failing to support our families, of sacrificing their dreams for ours. Fear of betraying our race, our ’hood, our homies. Fear of failure. Fear of being ridiculous. Fear of throwing away the education, the training, the preparation that those we love have sacrificed so much for, that we ourselves have worked our butts off for. Fear of launching into the void, of hurtling too far out there; fear of passing some point of no return, beyond which we cannot recant, cannot reverse, cannot rescind, but must live with this cocked-up choice for the rest of our lives. Fear of madness. Fear of insanity. Fear of death.   These are serious fears. But they’re not the real fear. Not the Master Fear, the Mother of all Fears that’s so close to us that even when we verbalize it we don’t believe it.   Fear That We Will Succeed.   That we can access the powers we secretly know we possess.   That we can become the person we sense in our hearts we truly are.   This is the most terrifying prospect a human being can face, because it ejects him at one go (he imagines) from all the tribal inclusions his psyche is wired for and has been for fifty million years.   We fear discovering that we are more than we think we are. More than our parents/children/teachers think we are. We fear that we actually possess the talent that our still, small voice tells us. That we actually have the guts, the perseverance, the capacity. We fear that we truly can steer our ship, plant our flag, reach our Promised Land. We fear this because, if it’s true, then we become estranged from all we know. We pass through a membrane. We become monsters and monstrous.   We know that if we embrace our ideals, we must prove worthy of them. And that scares the hell out of us. What will become of us? We will lose our friends and family, who will no longer recognize us. We will wind up alone, in the cold void of starry space, with nothing and no one to hold on to.   Of course this is exactly what happens. But here’s the trick. We wind up in space, but not alone. Instead we are tapped into an unquenchable, undepletable, inexhaustible source of wisdom, consciousness, companionship. Yeah, we lose friends. But we find friends too, in places we never thought to look. And they’re better friends, truer friends. And we’re better and truer to them.   Do you believe me?
Steven Pressfield (The War Of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
It may be that the human race is not ready for freedom. The air of liberty may be too rarefied for us to breathe. […] The paradox seems to be, as Socrates demonstrated long ago, that the truly free individual is free only to the extent of his own self-mastery. While those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern over them.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
Looking at Mulan, the soldier felt pride, but also compassion. Mulan had mastered the art of war, but there remained obstacles ahead, dangers more nuanced than a simple exchange of swords. She was close to fulfilling her destiny, but first, she'd have to learn the way of the spirits, to use their strength as her own. And she would know pain. Because the fenghuang, the phoenix, that guardian of imperial harmony, does not grant its blessing to everyone. Only the most honest, loyal, and selfless. The one who is brave against encroaching darkness.
Livia Blackburne (Feather and Flame (The Queen's Council, #2))
The master warrior constantly works on and refines his personal psychology so that the actions of others don't cause him to self-destruct as a result of taking attacks personally.
Mark B. Warring (The Art of Psychological Warfare: 51 Principles of Conflict Resolution, Negotiation, Strategy, Office Politics, Career Building, Self Help, & Motivation for Success & Happiness in Business & Life)
But the most intriguing part of the van Meegeren story is how his success as a forger got him arrested as a war criminal. During the German occupation of the Netherlands, Han-he was also an art dealer-sold one of his Vermeer forgeries, Christ with the Adulteress, to a German banker, who then sold it to Hermann Goering, number two in Hitler's command. When the painting was discovered hidden in an Austrian salt mine after the war, it was traced back to Han. On the assumption that he had sold a Dutch national treasure to the enemy during wartime, van Meegeren charged as a Nazi collaborator and thrown into jail. Han was then faced with a choice: Confess to forging the painting or spend the rest of his life in prison. After a week in solitary confinement, he told his jailers that the painting was not a master- piece by Vermeer, just a forgery by van Meegeren. But, to both his dismay and gratification, no one believed him. So, under the vigilant eyes s of reporters and court-appointed witnesses, he repainted the forgery while a prisoner at the Headquarters of Military Command. Both of his works were "authenticated" as forgeries, and the war crime charges were dropped.
Barbara A. Shapiro (The Art Forger)
Prior to the outbreak of war and the flight of the bishops from the House of Lords and their episcopal posts, a candidate for ordination in the Church of England needed to present himself to a bishop and meet some basic requirements. He needed to be twenty-three years of age to be ordained a deacon, twenty-four years of age to be ordained a priest.8 By 1604, to be eligible for ordination he needed to show proof that he was appointed, or about to be appointed, to some ministerial or academic calling, or that he had held a master of arts degree for five years and resided at one of the universities, or that the bishop himself was willing to “keep and maintain him with all things necessary” until he had an “ecclesiastical living” in which to put the man.9 The ordinand also had to establish that he had satisfactory morals, demonstrated by letters of testimonial, and an adequate education, demonstrated by the completion of a university degree or the ability to give “an account of his faith in Latin, according
Chad B. Van Dixhoorn (God's Ambassadors: The Westminster Assembly and the Reformation of the English Pulpit, 1643-1653)
RECOMMENDED READING Brooks, David. The Road to Character. New York: Random House, 2015. Brown, Peter C., Henry L. Roediger III, and Mark A. McDaniel. Make It Stick: The Science of Successful Learning. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 2014. Damon, William. The Path to Purpose: How Young People Find Their Calling in Life. New York: Free Press, 2009. Deci, Edward L. with Richard Flaste. Why We Do What We Do: Understanding Self-Motivation. New York: Penguin Group, 1995. Duhigg, Charles. The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business. New York: Random House, 2012. Dweck, Carol. Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. New York: Random House, 2006. Emmons, Robert A. Thanks!: How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2007. Ericsson, Anders and Robert Pool. Peak: Secrets from the New Science of Expertise. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016. Heckman, James J., John Eric Humphries, and Tim Kautz (eds.). The Myth of Achievement Tests: The GED and the Role of Character in American Life. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2014. Kaufman, Scott Barry and Carolyn Gregoire. Wired to Create: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind. New York: Perigee, 2015. Lewis, Sarah. The Rise: Creativity, the Gift of Failure, and the Search for Mastery. New York: Simon and Schuster, 2014. Matthews, Michael D. Head Strong: How Psychology is Revolutionizing War. New York: Oxford University Press, 2013. McMahon, Darrin M. Divine Fury: A History of Genius. New York: Basic Books, 2013. Mischel, Walter. The Marshmallow Test: Mastering Self-Control. New York: Little, Brown, 2014. Oettingen, Gabriele. Rethinking Positive Thinking: Inside the New Science of Motivation. New York: Penguin Group, 2014. Pink, Daniel H. Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us. New York: Riverhead Books, 2009. Renninger, K. Ann and Suzanne E. Hidi. The Power of Interest for Motivation and Engagement. New York: Routledge, 2015. Seligman, Martin E. P. Learned Optimism: How To Change Your Mind and Your Life. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1991. Steinberg, Laurence. Age of Opportunity: Lessons from the New Science of Adolescence. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014. Tetlock, Philip E. and Dan Gardner. Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction. New York: Crown, 2015. Tough, Paul. How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012. Willingham, Daniel T. Why Don’t Students Like School: A Cognitive Scientist Answers Questions About How the Mind Works and What It Means for the Classroom. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2009.
Angela Duckworth (Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance)
Those skilled in war bring the enemy to the field of battle and are not brought there by him. One able to make the enemy come of his own accord does so by offering him some advantage. And one able to prevent him from coming does so by hurting him. If you are able to hold critical points on his strategic roads the enemy cannot come. Therefore Master Wang said: 'When a cat is at the rat hole, ten thousand rats dare not come out; when a tiger guards the ford, ten thousand deer cannot cross.
Sun Tzu (The Art of War)
To master a relationship is all about you. The first step is to become aware, to know that everyone dreams his own dream. Once you know this, you can be responsible for your half of the relationship, which is you. If you know that you are only responsible for half of the relationship, you can easily control your half. It is not up to us to control the other half. If we respect, we know that our partner, or friend, or son, or mother, is completely responsible for his or her own half. If we respect the other half, there is always going to be peace in that relationship. There is no war.
Miguel Ruiz (The mastery of love)
honestly evaluating and understanding your weaknesses will you be positioned to overcome them.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
I’ve seen many small businesses completely misunderstand their marketplace because they didn’t want to believe that their products or services were missing the mark, or they didn’t want to make the necessary investments for course corrections, or they simply didn’t offer the innovation or differentiation that they thought they did.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
Hear me! in Nature are two hostile Gods, “Makers and Masters of existing things, “Equal in power:... nay hear me patiently!... “Equal ... for look around thee! the same Earth “Bears fruit and poison; where the Camel finds “His fragrant [145] food, the horned Viper there “Sucks in the juice of death; the Elements “Now serve the use of man, and now assert “Dominion o’er his weakness; dost thou hear “The sound of merriment and nuptial song? “From the next house proceeds the mourner’s cry “Lamenting o’er the dead. Sayest thou that Sin “Entered the world of Allah? that the Fiend “Permitted for a season, prowls for prey? “When to thy tent the venomous serpent creeps “Dost thou not crush the reptile? even so, “Besure, had Allah crushed his Enemy, “But that the power was wanting. From the first, “Eternal as themselves their warfare is, “To the end it must endure. Evil and Good.... “What are they Thalaba but words? in the strife “Of Angels, as of men, the weak are guilty; “Power must decide. The Spirits of the Dead “Quitting their mortal mansion, enter not, “As falsely ye are preached, their final seat “Of bliss, or bale; nor in the sepulchre “Sleep they the long long sleep: each joins the host “Of his great Leader, aiding in the war “Whose fate involves his own. “Woe to the vanquished then! “Woe to the sons of man who followed him! “They with their Leader, thro’ eternity, “Must howl in central fires. “Thou Thalaba hast chosen ill thy part, “If choice it may be called, where will was not, “Nor searching doubt, nor judgement wise to weigh. “Hard is the service of the Power beneath “Whose banners thou wert born; his discipline “Severe, yea cruel; and his wages, rich “Only in promise; who has seen the pay? “For us ... the pleasures of the world are ours, “Riches and rule, the kingdoms of the Earth. “We met in Babylon adventurers both, “Each zealous for the hostile Power he served: “We meet again; thou feelest what thou art, “Thou seest what I am, the Sultan here, “The Lord of Life and Death. “Abandon him who has abandoned thee, “And be as I am, great among mankind!
Robert Southey (Thalaba the Destroyer)
RESISTANCE IS FUELED BY FEAR Resistance has no strength of its own. Every ounce of juice it possesses comes from us. We feed it with power by our fear of it. Master that fear and we conquer Resistance.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
He who pursues, not seeking honor, who withdraws, not escaping from guilt, who wants only to protect his people and serving the master, that man is a jewel of the kingdom.
Sun Tzu (The Art Of War)
To be a poet, one must have the ability to see beyond the superficial and despite the synthesis of rhythm, style and cadences, the poet must possess and master the craft of speaking to the hearts of men in a voice that touches the soul of his society, such is the same, whether in dance, painting, sculpture, music or any artistic creation.
Kendal-Valentino Smith (Passion : The Art of Making Love and War)
A wise general is a master of fate; he holds in his hands peace or destruction of his people.
Sun Tzu (The Art of War)
[W]arfare is by nature a form of acquisition—for the art of hunting is part of it—which is applied against wild animals and against those men who are not prepared to be ruled even though they are born for subjugation, in so far as this war is just by nature.16 In the Aristotelian scheme, barbarians are poised precariously on the cusp between humanity and subhumanity. Although a higher form of life than cattle, they are unable to reason. They are thus strangers to the civilized life of the polis, and can achieve human status only vicariously by submission to their fully human masters.
David Livingstone Smith (Less Than Human: Why We Demean, Enslave, and Exterminate Others)
Plagues came over and over. So did war. Each ran humanity through a selective sieve, culling out the socially unskilled from the high-level wheeler-dealers—politicos, bureaucrats, warrior-generals, celebrities, aristocrats,*26 businessmen, and priests—who had mastered the art of network maintenance and enrichment. In the end, those who had most successfully meshed into the massively integrated ecosystem of a metropolis—that knot of town and surrounding countryside tied to numerous other junctures of its kind—were the ones who triumphed and survived. Well over 75 percent of the dwellers in industrial nations have now been urbanized.27 And inhabitants of underdeveloped areas are moving with unprecedented speed from bush and farm into the megalopolises.
Howard Bloom (Global Brain: The Evolution of Mass Mind from the Big Bang to the 21st Century)
A pro views her work as craft, not art. Not because she believes art is devoid of a mystical dimension. On the contrary. She understands that all creative endeavor is holy, but she doesn't dwell on it. She knows if she thinks about that too much, it will paralyze her. So she concentrates on technique. The professional masters how, and leaves what and why to the gods.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
The interval between the first and second wars in Iraq (1991 and 2003) has seen a remarkable shift from Clausewitz to Sun Tzu in the discourse about contemporary warfare. Clausewitz enjoyed an undreamed of renaissance in the USA after the Vietnam War and seemed to have attained the status of master thinker. On War enabled many theorists to recognize the causes of America’s traumatic defeat in Southeast Asia, as well as the conditions for gaining victory in the future. More recently, however, he has very nearly been outlawed. The reason for this change can be found in two separate developments. Firstly, there has been an unleashing of war and violence in the ongoing civil wars and massacres, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, in the secessionist wars in the former Yugoslavia, and in the persistence of inter-communal violence along the fringes of Europe’s former empires. These developments seemed to indicate a departure from interstate wars, for which Clausewitz’s theory appeared to be designed, and the advent of a new era of civil wars, non-state wars, and social anarchy. Sun Tzu’s The Art of War seemed to offer a better understanding of these kinds of war, because he lived in an era of never-ending civil wars. Secondly, the reason for the change from Clausewitz to Sun Tzu is connected with the ‘revolution in military affairs’. The concepts of Strategic Information Warfare (SIW) and fourth generation warfare have made wide use of Sun Tzu’s thought to explain and illustrate their position. The ‘real father’ of ‘shock and awe’ in the Iraq War of 2003 was Sun Tzu, argued one commentator in the Asia Times. Some pundits even claimed triumphantly that Sun Tzu had defeated Clausewitz in this war, because the US Army conducted the campaign in accordance with the principles of Sun Tzu, whereas the Russian advisers of the Iraqi army had relied on Clausewitz and the Russian defence against Napoleon’s army in 1812. The triumphant attitude has long been abandoned.
Andreas Herberg-Rothe (Clausewitz's Puzzle: The Political Theory of War)
dlaurent The Ballad of Johnny Jihad (Down Desert Storm Way). © c. 2001 During the Gulf War (1990-1991), American Pro-Taliban Jihadist John Philip Walker Lindh was captured while serving with the enemy forces. Here is his tale in song and legend. My nowex at the time did not want me to run to the radio station with this, thought I’d look singularly ridiculii. The following, 'The Ballad of Johnny Jihad' is sung to the tune of 'The Ballad of Jed Clampett' (1962), commonly known as 'The Beverly Hillbillies' song, the theme tune for the TV show series starring Buddy Ebsen. (Lyrics, Paul Henning, vocals Jerry Scoggins, Lester Flatt; master musicians of the art of the ballad and bluegrass ways, Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs). The Ballad of Johnny Jihad (Sung) Come and listen to the story of Johnny Jihad, Who left home and country to study his Islam, And then one day he was shooting at our troops, So down through the camp did the government swoop. (Voice Over): ‘Al Que-da that is, Af-ghani Tali-ban, Terror-ist . . .’ (Sung) Well, the first thing you know ol’ John from ’Frisco roamed, The lawman said ‘he’s a lad misunderstood very far from home.’ Said, ‘Californee is the place he oughta be,’ So they request his trial be moved to Berkeley . . . (Voice Over): ‘Liberals that is, group-ies, peace-activists . . .’ Announcer: The Johnny Jihad Show! (Intense bluegrass banjo pickin’ music) . . . (Sung) Now its time to say goodbye to John and all his kin, Hope ya don’t think of him as a fightin’ Taliban, You’re all invited back again to this insanity, To get yourself a heapin’ helpin’ of this travesty . . . Johnny Jihad, that’s what they call ’im now Nice guy; don’t get fooled now, y’hear? (Voice Over): ‘Lawyerin’ that is, O.J.ism, media-circus . . .’ (Music) . . . end
Douglas M. Laurent
Trusting to this unity of civilized races countless people left hearth and home to live in strange lands and trusted their fortunes to the friendly relations existing between the various countries. And even he who was not tied down to the same spot by the exigencies of life could combine all the advantages and charms of civilized countries into a newer and greater fatherland which he could enjoy without hindrance or suspicion. He thus took delight in the blue and the grey ocean, the beauty of snow clad mountains and of the green lowlands, the magic of the north woods and the grandeur of southern vegetation, the atmosphere of landscapes upon which great historical memories rest, and the peace of untouched nature. The new fatherland was to him also a museum, filled with the treasure that all the artists of the world for many centuries had created and left behind. While he wandered from one hall to another in this museum he could give his impartial appreciation to the varied types of perfection that had been developed among his distant compatriots by the mixture of blood, by history, and by the peculiarities of physical environment. Here cool, inflexible energy was developed to the highest degree, there the graceful art of beautifying life, elsewhere the sense of law and order, or other qualities that have made man master of the earth.
Sigmund Freud (Reflections on War and Death)
Always hold your beliefs about your business and its performance up against real-world data, and when the two are in conflict, pay attention.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
Small businesses need people who can act definitively and get things done.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
I declare a war against my Parasite for the freedom to use my own mind and body, for the freedom to become the architect of my own life, to design the life of my dreams, and to create a masterpiece of art.
Miguel Ruiz (The Four Agreements Companion Book: Using The Four Agreements to Master the Dream of Your Life (A Toltec Wisdom Book))
Never give up working to defeat your enemy. Master his fate. Exploit his unpreparedness and attack him when he is unaware.   —Art of War, Sunzi (ca. 544–496 BC)
Anonymous
If your people are unified and move together, they will be much more difficult to divide.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
When you execute a clear strike, you should do so with unabashed power and commitment.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
20 percent that succeed take a different path than the one they started down—in some cases much different.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
In just a bony fistful of years, classical Russian food culture vanished, almost without a trace. The country's nationalistic euphoria on entering World War I in 1914 collapsed under nonstop disasters presided over by the 'last of the Romanovs': clueless, autocratic czar Nicholas II and Alexandra, his reactionary, hysterical German-born wife. Imperial Russia went lurching toward breakdown and starvation. Golden pies, suckling pigs? In 1917, the insurgent Bolsheviks' banners demanded simply the most basic of staples - khleb (bread) - along with land (beleaguered peasants were 80 percent of Russia's population) and an end to the ruinous war. On the evening of October 25, hours before the coup by Lenin and his tiny cadre, ministers of Kerensky's foundering provisional government, which replaced the czar after the popular revolution of February 1917, dined finely at the Winter Palace: soup, artichokes, and fish. A doomed meal all around.
Anya von Bremzen (Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking: A Memoir of Food and Longing)
The amateur has not mastered the technique of his art. Nor does he expose himself to judgment in the real world. If we show our poem to our friend and our friend says, "It's wonderful, I love it," that's not real-world feedback, that's our friend being nice to us. Nothing is as empowering as real- world validation, even if it's for failure.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
The professional respects his craft. He does not consider himself superior to it. He recognizes the contributions of those who have gone before him. He apprentices himself to them. The professional dedicates himself to mastering technique not because he believes technique is a substitute for inspiration but because he wants to be in possession of the full arsenal of skills when inspiration does come.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Sometimes it seems that for nineteenth-century Russian writers, food was what landscape (or maybe class?) was for the English. Or war for the Germans, love for the French - a subject encompassing the great themes of comedy, tragedy, ecstasy, and doom.
Anya von Bremzen (Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking: A Memoir of Food and Longing)
It may be that the human race is not ready for freedom. The air of liberty may be too rarefied for us to breathe. Certainly I wouldn't be writing this book, on this subject, if living with freedom were easy. The paradox seems to be, as Socrates demonstrated long ago, that the truly free individual is free only to the extent of his own self-mastery. While those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern over them.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
Back at the Davydokovo apartment, we sat mesmerized in front of Grandad's Avantgard brand TV. It was all porn all the time. Porn in three flavors: 1)Tits and asses; 2) gruesome close-ups of dead bodies from war or crimes; 3) Stalin. Wave upon wave of previously unseen documentary footage of the Generalissimo. Of all the porn, number three was the most lurid. The erotics of power.
Anya von Bremzen (Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking: A Memoir of Food and Longing)
The Queue consists entirely of fragments of ochered’ dialogue, a linguistic vernacular anchored by the long-suffering word stoyat’ (to stand). You stood? Yes, stood. Three hours. Got damaged ones. Wrong size. Here’s what the line wasn’t: a gray inert nowhere. Imagine instead an all-Soviet public square, a hurly-burly where comrades traded gossip and insults, caught up with news left out of the newspapers, got into fistfights, or enacted comradely feats. In the thirties the NKVD had informers in queues to assess public moods, hurrying the intelligence straight to Stalin’s brooding desk. Lines shaped opinions and bred ad hoc communities: citizens from all walks of life standing, united by probably the only truly collective authentic Soviet emotions: yearning and discontent (not to forget the unifying hostility toward war veterans and pregnant women, honored comrades allowed to get goods without a wait).
Anya von Bremzen (Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking: A Memoir of Food and Longing)
At a time like this maybe the world is looking at us not just at a miracle crusade or sunday church service but the way we are living. Maybe they want to see whether what our Master left for us worked for us; there is a counter spirit to the spirit of fear, it is the love of God.
Patience Johnson (Why Does an Orderly God Allow Disorder)
Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert (3) Superintelligence by Nick Bostrom (3) Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! by Richard P. Feynman (3) The 4-Hour Body by Tim Ferriss (3) The Bible (3) The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz (3) The War of Art by Steven Pressfield (3) Watchmen by Alan Moore (3) Zero to One by Peter Thiel with Blake Masters (3)
Timothy Ferriss (Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers)
In 1672 a severe economic downturn (the “Year of Disaster”) struck the Netherlands, after Louis XIV and a French army invaded the Dutch Republic from the south (known as the Franco-Dutch War). During the Third Anglo-Dutch War an English fleet and two allied German bishops attacked the country from the east causing more destruction. Many people panicked; courts, theatres, shops and schools were closed. Five years passed before circumstances improved. In the summer of 1675 Vermeer borrowed money in Amsterdam, using his mother-in-law as a surety. In December 1675 Vermeer fell into a frenzy and, within a day and a half, died. He was buried in the Protestant Old Church on 15 December 1675. Catharina Bolnes attributed her husband’s death to the stress of financial pressures.
Johannes Vermeer (Masters of Art: Johannes Vermeer)
These women are a blessing from the One above. Adam was lonely, it's true to be, God blessed him with a woman i the middle of a garden of beauty. I mean think of the beauty; angels from heaven came down to dominate our women. Wars won, wars lost over their species. Shout out Cleopatra, shout out Marilyn Monroe, mastered the art of seduction, it's something I know. But back to us like we're in the middle of lust, pulling on your hair and the taste of your wet, scratching and biting til the sun set.
Jose R. Coronado (The Land Flowing With Milk And Honey)
In one of his books Tolstoy remarks how often the cleverest boy is at the bottom of the class. And this really does occur. A boy of active, independent mind, who has his own problems to think out, will often find it terribly hard to keep his attention on the lessons the master wants him to learn.
Leo Tolstoy (The Complete Works of Leo Tolstoy: Novels, Short Stories, Plays, Memoirs, Letters & Essays on Art, Religion and Politics: Anna Karenina, War and Peace, ... and Stories for Children and Many More)
Sandy was fascinated by the economy of Teddy Lloyd's method, as she had been four years earlier by Miss Brodie''s variations on her love story, when she had attached to her first, war-time lover the attributes of the art master and the singing master who had then newly entered her orbit. Teddy Lloyd's method of presentation was similar, it was economical, and it always seemed afterwards to Sandy that where there was a choice of various courses, the most economical was the best, and that the course to be taken was the most expedient and most suitable at the time for all the objects in hand.
Muriel Spark (The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie)
A wealthy man and his son loved to collect works of art. They had in their collection works ranging from Picasso to Raphael and Rembrandt. When the Vietnam War broke out, the son was drafted and sent to fight in ’Nam. He was very courageous and died in battle. The father was notified and grieved deeply for his only son. About a month later, a young lad appeared at the door to his house and said, “Sir, you don’t know me, but I am the soldier for whom your son gave his life that fateful day. He was carrying me to safety when a bullet struck him in the heart. He died instantly. He used to often talk about you and your love for art. Here’s something for you,” he added, holding out a package. “It is something that I drew. I know I am not much of an artist, but I wanted you to have this from me as a small measure of memory and thanks.” It was a portrait of his son, painted by the young man. It captured the personality of his son. The father’s eyes welled up with tears as he thanked the young man for the painting. He offered to pay for the picture, but the man replied, “Oh! No, sir. I could never repay what your son did for me. It is my gift to you.” The father hung the portrait over his mantel and showed it proudly to all his visitors along with all of the great works of art he possessed. Some time later, the old man died. As decreed in his will, his paintings were all to be auctioned. Many influential and rich people gathered together, excited over the prospect of owning one of the masterpieces. On a platform nearby also sat the painting of his son. The auctioneer pounded his gavel. “Let’s start the bidding with the picture of his son. Who will bid for this picture?” There was silence. A voice shouted from the back, “Let’s skip this one. We want the famous masters.” But the auctioneer persisted. “Ten dollars, twenty dollars, what do I hear?” Another voice came back angrily, “We didn’t come here for this. Let’s have the Picassos, the Matisses, the van Goghs.” Still the auctioneer persisted. “The son. Anyone for the son? Who’ll take the son?” Finally a quavering voice came from the back. It was the longtime gardener of the house. “I’ll take the son for ten dollars. I am sorry, but that’s all I have.” “Ten dollars once, ten dollars twice, anybody for twenty dollars? Sold for ten dollars.” “Now let’s get on with the auction,” said a wealthy art aficionado sitting in the front row. The auctioneer laid down his gavel and spoke. “I am sorry, but the auction is over.” “But what about the other paintings? The masters?” “The auction is over,” said the auctioneer. “I was asked to conduct the auction with a stipulation, a secret stipulation that said that only the painting of the son would be auctioned. Whoever bought that painting would inherit the entire estate, paintings and all. The one who took the son gets everything.
Ramesh Richard (Preparing Evangelistic Sermons: A Seven-Step Method for Preaching Salvation)
Mastering speed is the essence of war. Take advantage of a large enemy’s inability to keep up. Use a philosophy of avoiding difficult situations. Attack the area where he doesn’t expect you.” ~Sun Tzu the Art of War1   In handling dynamic encounters, the phrase "time criticality" is often discussed. In this discussion there is often a miss-conception that to put time on your side, you must force the issue or, force the subject into action and always advance your position by moving forward. Speed is the essence of conflict, but speed does not always mean moving fast physically. It means preparing so you are in a position of advantage, which gives you time, hence speed.
Fred Leland (Adaptive Leadership Handbook - Law Enforcement & Security)
So she concentrates on technique. The professional masters how, and leaves what and why to the gods.
Steven Pressfield (The War Of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
Girl Reading a Letter at an Open Window This painting was completed in approximately 1657–1659 and is housed in the Gemäldegalerie in Dresden. For many years, the attribution of the painting was lost, with first Rembrandt and then Peter de Hooch being credited for the work before it was properly identified in 1880. After World War II, the painting was briefly in possession of the Soviet Union.
Johannes Vermeer (Masters of Art: Johannes Vermeer)
Girl Reading a Letter at an Open Window was among the paintings rescued from destruction during the bombing of Dresden in World War II, The painting was stored, with other works of art, in a tunnel in Saxon, Switzerland; when the Red Army encountered them, they took them. The Soviets portrayed this as an act of rescue; some others as an act of plunder. Either way, after the death of Joseph Stalin, the Soviets decided in 1955 to return the art to Germany, “for the purpose of strengthening and furthering the progress of friendship between the Soviet and German peoples.” Aggrieved at the thought of losing hundreds of paintings, art historians and museum curators in the Soviet Union suggested that “in acknowledgment for saving and returning the world-famous treasures of the Dresden Gallery” the Germans should perhaps donate to them Girl Reading a Letter at an Open Window and Sleeping Venus by Giorgione. The Germans did not take to the idea, and the painting was returned. Well-preserved, it is on display at the Gemäldegalerie in Dresden.
Johannes Vermeer (Masters of Art: Johannes Vermeer)
After the Nazi invasion of Austria, top Nazi officials including Reichsmarschall Hermann Göring attempted to acquire the painting. It was finally acquired from its then owner, Count Jaromir Czernin by Adolf Hitler for his personal collection at a price of 1.65 million Reichsmark through his agent, Hans Posse on November 20, 1940. The painting was rescued from a salt mine at the end of World War II in 1945, where it was preserved from Allied bombing raids, with other works of art.
Johannes Vermeer (Masters of Art: Johannes Vermeer)
When the enemy is at ease, be able to weary him; when well fed, to starve him; when at rest, to make him move. Appear at places to which he must hasten; move swiftly where he does not expect you. That you may march a thousand li without wearying yourself is because you travel where there is no enemy. Go into emptiness, strike voids, bypass what he defends, hit him where he does not expect you. To be certain to take what you attack is to attack a place the enemy does not protect. To be certain to hold what you defend is to defend a place the enemy does not attack. Therefore, against those skilled in attack, an enemy does not know where to defend; against the experts in defense, the enemy does not know where to attack. Subtle and insubstantial, the expert leaves no trace; divinely mysterious, he is inaudible. Thus he is master of his enemy's fate.
Sun Tzu (The Art of War)
To go back to the game metaphor from before, there exists a component of storytelling where it is you and the reader (or viewer, or whoever) sitting on opposite sides of a chessboard. You’re always trying to outwit each other. And sometimes you need them to outwit you—the audience needs that power, needs to be invested. They want to do work, and they want (sometimes) to be victorious. Other times, they want the shock of loss, the joy at being outplayed. And at those times you misdirect and distract, and as they’re thinking you’re moving your piece one way, you move it another and shock them with your prowess. But the trick is making all of this organic. It has to unfold naturally from the story—it’s not JUST you screwing with them. It’s you fucking with them within a framework that you built and agreed upon, a framework you’ve shown them, a place of rules and decorum. In this context, consider the game space. Like, say, a chessboard, or a D&D dungeon. The game space is an agreed-upon demesne. It has rules. It has squares. Each piece or character moves accordingly within those squares. It has a framework that everyone who has played the game understands. And yet, the outcome is never decided. The game is forever uncertain even within established parameters. Surprises occur. You might win. Maybe I win. That’s how storytelling operates best—we set up rules and a storyworld and characters, and you try to guess what we’re going to do with them. We as storytellers shouldn’t ever break the rules. Note: Breaking the rules in this context might mean conveniently leaving out a crucial storyworld rule (“Oh, vampires don’t have to drink blood; they can drink Kool-Aid”), or solving a mystery with a killer who the audience couldn’t ever have guessed (“It was the sheriff from two towns over who we have never before discussed or even mentioned”), or invoking a deus ex machina (“Don’t worry, giant eagles will save them. It’s cool”). You can still have chaos and uncertainty within the parameters—creating a framework, like building a house, doesn’t mean it cannot contain secrets and surprises—but you stay within the parameters that you created. Again, it’s why stage magic works as a metaphor when actual wizard magic does not. With stage magic—tricks and illusions!—you can’t really violate the laws of reality. But it damn sure feels like you do. Stories make you believe in wizard magic, but really it’s just a clever, artful trick. The storyworld is bent and twisted, but never broken. And, of course, your greatest touchstone for all of this is the characters, and their problems and places inside the storyworld. The characters will forever be your guide, if you let them. They are the tug-of-war rope, the chess pieces, the D&D characters that exist as a connection between you and the audience. They are your glorious leverage.
Chuck Wendig (Damn Fine Story: Mastering the Tools of a Powerful Narrative)
There are not more than five primary colors, yet in combination they produce more hues than can ever be seen. —SUN TZU, The Art of War
Anthony Robbins (MONEY Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom)
The small businesses that win do so by building strategic alliances, outmaneuvering the larger businesses, creating opportunities, outperforming, and by taking advantage of every opportunity within their grasp.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
Your company must have a real-world strategic plan that carefully considers the reality of your competitive marketplace. With that plan in place, each department within the organization should have a well-coordinated strategic plan and tactics to support the company’s über-goal. Everything you do should be designed to deploy and advance that strategy.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
The benevolent general maintains a healthy perspective that is larger than he is:
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
Small-business creators need to be able to handle criticism, and they must be endowed with humility, curiosity, determination, and a willingness to try and to fail.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
Moral law governs the leader’s character, shapes method and discipline, and impacts success.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
The Commander stands for the virtues of wisdom, sincerely, benevolence, courage, and strictness.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
If you can’t honestly assess where you’re strong and where you’re weak, any victory you achieve will be fleeting.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
False assumptions are the self-perpetuating common plague of some small-business leaders.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
1. He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
not everything is an “opportunity” if it doesn’t fit into your organization’s goals and objectives.
Becky Sheetz-Runkle (The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu)
For hundreds of years the samurai not only were masters of the political fate of the nation, but were considered the leaders of the popular conscience. The morale and spirit of the warrior was as important to their influence on society as was their material power.
Shambhala Publications (The Japanese Art of War: Understanding the Culture of Strategy (Shambhala Classics))
Masters of the arts cannot be called adepts as long as they have not left behind attachments to their various skills. A mendicant asked an ancient saint, “What is the Way?” The saint said, “The normal mind is the Way.” The principle of this story applies to all arts. This is the stage where sicknesses of the mind are all gone, when you have become normal in mind and have no sicknesses even while in the midst of sicknesses.
Shambhala Publications (The Japanese Art of War: Understanding the Culture of Strategy (Shambhala Classics))
We experience [procrastination] as fear. But fear of what? Fear of the consequences of following our heart. Fear of bankruptcy, fear of poverty, fear of insolvency. Fear of groveling when we try to make it on our own, and of groveling when we give up and come crawling back to where we started. Fear of being selfish, of being rotten wives or disloyal husbands; fear of failing to support our families, of sacrificing their dreams for ours. Fear of betraying our race, our 'hood, our homies. Fear of failure. Fear of being ridiculous. Fear of throwing away the education, the training, the preparation that those we love have sacrificed so much for, that we ourselves have worked our butts off for. Fear of launching into the void, of hurtling too far out there; fear of passing some point of no return, beyond which we cannot recant, cannot reverse, cannot rescind, but must live with this cocked-up choice for the rest of our lives. Fear of madness. Fear of insanity. Fear of death. These are serious fears. But they're not the real fear. Not the master fear, the mother of all fears that's so close to us that even when we verbalize it we don't believe it. Fear That We Will Succeed.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
Only in the Soviet Union did women carry arms and engage in routine front-line combat duty on a large scale during World War II. There were numerous Soviet women infantry soldiers, and at least two female combat pilots achieved ace status. Katya Budanova and Lilya Litvak each shot down more than a dozen Luftwaffe aircraft.
Bill Yenne (Hitler's Master of the Dark Arts: Himmler's Black Knights and the Occult Origins of the SS)
the truly free individual is free only to the extent of his own self-mastery. While those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern over them.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art)
It is easy to see all that art can lose from such a constant obligation. Ease, to begin with, and that divine liberty so apparent in the work of Mozart. It is easier to understand why our works of art have a drawn, set look and why they collapse so suddenly. It is obvious why we have more journalists than creative writers, more boy scouts of painting than Cézannes, and why sentimental tales or detective novels have taken the place of War and Peace or The Charterhouse of Parma. Of course, one can always meet that state of things with a humanistic lamentation and become what Stepan Trofimovich in The Possessed insists upon being; a living reproach. One can also have, like him, attacks of patriotic melancholy. But such melancholy in no way changes reality. It is better, in my opinion, to give the era its due, since it demands this so vigorously, and calmly admit that the period of the revered master, of the artist with a camellia in his buttonhole, of the armchair genius is over.
Albert Camus (Create Dangerously)
Resistance plays for keeps. It plays to kill. Resistance is fueled by fear. It has no power on its own. Every ounce of juice it possesses comes from us. Master the fear and we conquer resistance.
Steven Pressfield (The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle)
Chess holds its master in its own bonds,” Albert Einstein once said, “shackling the mind and brain so that the inner freedom of the very strongest must suffer.
David Shenk (The Immortal Game: A History of Chess, or How 32 Carved Pieces on a Board Illuminated Our Understanding of War, Art, Science and the Human Brain)
Another dangerous neoliberal word circulating everywhere that is worth zooming in on is the word ‘resilience’. On the surface, I think many people won’t object to the idea that it is good and beneficial for us to be resilient to withstand the difficulties and challenges of life. As a person who lived through the atrocities of wars and sanctions in Iraq, I’ve learnt that life is not about being happy or sad, not about laughing or crying, leaving or staying. Life is about endurance. Since most feelings, moods, and states of being are fleeting, endurance, for me, is the common denominator that helps me go through the darkest and most beautiful moments of life knowing that they are fleeing. In that sense, I believe it is good for us to master the art of resilience and endurance. Yet, how should we think about the meaning of ‘resilience’ when used by ruling classes that push for wars and occupations, and that contribute to producing millions of deaths and refugees to profit from plundering the planet? What does it mean when these same warmongers fund humanitarian organizations asking them to go to war-torn countries to teach people the value of ‘resilience’? What happens to the meaning of ‘resilience’ when they create frighteningly precarious economic structures, uncertain employment, and lay off people without accountability? All this while also asking us to be ‘resilient’… As such, we must not let the word ‘resilience’ circulate or get planted in the heads of our youth uncritically. Instead, we should raise questions about what it really means. Does it mean the same thing for a poor young man or woman from Ghana, Ecuador, Afghanistan vs a privileged member from the upper management of a U.S. corporation? Resilience towards what? What is the root of the challenges for which we are expected to be resilient? Does our resilience solve the cause or the root of the problem or does it maintain the status quo while we wait for the next disaster? Are individuals always to blame if their resilience doesn’t yield any results, or should we equally examine the social contract and the entire structure in which individuals live that might be designed in such a way that one’s resilience may not prevail no matter how much perseverance and sacrifice one demonstrates? There is no doubt that resilience, according to its neoliberal corporate meaning, is used in a way that places the sole responsibility of failure on the shoulders of individuals rather than equally holding accountable the structure in which these individuals exist, and the precarious circumstances that require work and commitment way beyond individual capabilities and resources. I find it more effective not to simply aspire to be resilient, but to distinguish between situations in which individual resilience can do, and those for which the depth, awareness, and work of an entire community or society is needed for any real and sustainable change to occur. But none of this can happen if we don’t first agree upon what each of us mean when we say ‘resilience,’ and if we have different definitions of what it means, then we should ask: how shall we merge and reconcile our definitions of the word so that we complement not undermine what we do individually and collectively as people. Resilience should not become a synonym for surrender. It is great to be resilient when facing a flood or an earthquake, but that is not the same when having to endure wars and economic crises caused by the ruling class and warmongers. [From “On the Great Resignation” published on CounterPunch on February 24, 2023]
Louis Yako