Organizer Quotes

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To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1))
You are not special. You're not a beautiful and unique snowflake. You're the same decaying organic matter as everything else. We're all part of the same compost heap. We're all singing, all dancing crap of the world.
Chuck Palahniuk (Fight Club)
Talking nonsense is the sole privilege mankind possesses over the other organisms. It's by talking nonsense that one gets to the truth! I talk nonsense, therefore I'm human
Fyodor Dostoevsky (Notes from Underground, White Nights, The Dream of a Ridiculous Man, and Selections from The House of the Dead)
There will come a time when all of us are dead. All of us. There will come a time when there are no human beings remaining to remember that anyone ever existed or that our species ever did anything. There will be no one left to remember Aristotle or Cleopatra, let alone you. Everything that we did and built and wrote and thought and discovered will be forgotten and all of this will have been for naught. Maybe that time is coming soon and maybe it is millions of years away, but even if we survive the collapse of our sun, we will not survive forever. There was time before organisms experienced consciousness, and there will be time after. And if the inevitability of human oblivion worries you, I encourage you to ignore it. God knows that’s what everyone else does.
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
I am only responsible for my own heart, you offered yours up for the smashing my darling. Only a fool would give out such a vital organ
Anaïs Nin
Is man merely a mistake of God's? Or God merely a mistake of man?
Friedrich Nietzsche
Yes, reason has been a part of organized religion, ever since two nudists took dietary advice from a talking snake.
Jon Stewart
No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality.
Shirley Jackson (The Haunting of Hill House)
All religion, my friend, is simply evolved out of fraud, fear, greed, imagination, and poetry.
Edgar Allan Poe
Atheism is a non-prophet organization.
George Carlin
I believe in God, but not as one thing, not as an old man in the sky. I believe that what people call God is something in all of us. I believe that what Jesus and Mohammed and Buddha and all the rest said was right. It's just that the translations have gone wrong.
John Lennon
Ben wished the world was organized by the Dewey decimal system. That way you'd be able to find whatever you were looking for.
Brian Selznick (Wonderstruck)
It is not enough to win a war; it is more important to organize the peace.
Aristotle
Properly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived.
Isaac Asimov
Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.
Will Durant (The Story of Philosophy: The Lives and Opinions of the World's Greatest Philosophers)
Religion is excellent stuff for keeping common people quiet. Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich.
Napoléon Bonaparte
I would like to see anyone, prophet, king or God, convince a thousand cats to do the same thing at the same time.
Neil Gaiman
Chaos is found in greatest abundance wherever order is being sought. It always defeats order, because it is better organized.
Terry Pratchett (Interesting Times: The Play)
I'm completely in favor of the separation of Church and State. ... These two institutions screw us up enough on their own, so both of them together is certain death.
George Carlin
Suicide is a form of murder - premeditated murder. It isn't something you do the first time you think of doing it. It takes getting used to. And you need the means, the opportunity, the motive. A successful suicide demands good organization and a cool head, both of which are usually incompatible with the suicidal state of mind.
Susanna Kaysen (Girl, Interrupted)
Good organization,” said Magnus. “I knew the man who founded it, back in the 1800s. Woolsey Scot. Respectable old werewolf family.” Alec made an ugly sound in the back of his throat. “Did you sleep with him, too?” Magnus’s cat eyes widened. “Alexander!
Cassandra Clare
No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream.
Shirley Jackson (The Haunting of Hill House)
Religion. It's given people hope in a world torn apart by religion.
Jon Stewart
Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by rulers as useful.
Seneca
There was time before organisms experienced consciousness, and there will be time after. And if the inevitability of human oblivion worries you, I encourage you to ignore it.
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.
Richard Dawkins (The God Delusion)
I’ve learned that you can’t predict [love] or plan for it. For someone like me who is obsessed with organization and planning, I love the idea that love is the one exception to that. Love is the one wild card.
Taylor Swift
Don’t waste your energy trying to educate or change opinions; go over, under, through, and opinions will change organically when you’re the boss. Or they won’t. Who cares? Do your thing, and don’t care if they like it.
Tina Fey (Bossypants)
I'm not good with children," the god confessed. "Or people. Well, any organic life forms, really.
Rick Riordan (The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus, #1))
Legion, cuneum formate!’ Reyna yelled. ‘Advance!’ Another cheer on Jason’s right as Percy and Annabeth reunited with the forces of Camp Half-Blood. ‘Greeks!’ Percy yelled. ‘Let’s, um, fight stuff!’ They yelled like banshees and charged. Jason grinned. He loved the Greeks. They had no organization whatsoever, but they made up for it with enthusiasm.
Rick Riordan (The Blood of Olympus (The Heroes of Olympus, #5))
Why do you want to shut out of your life any uneasiness, any misery, any depression, since after all you don't know what work these conditions are doing inside you? Why do you want to persecute yourself with the question of where all this is coming from and where it is going? Since you know, after all, that you are in the midst of transitions and you wished for nothing so much as to change. If there is anything unhealthy in your reactions, just bear in mind that sickness is the means by which an organism frees itself from what is alien; so one must simply help it to be sick, to have its whole sickness and to break out with it, since that is the way it gets better.
Rainer Maria Rilke (Letters to a Young Poet)
Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe.
Frederick Douglass
Leaders who do not act dialogically, but insist on imposing their decisions, do not organize the people--they manipulate them. They do not liberate, nor are they liberated: they oppress.
Paulo Freire (Pedagogy of the Oppressed)
That life - whatever else it is - is short. That fate is cruel but maybe not random. That Nature (meaning Death) always wins but that doesn’t mean we have to bow and grovel to it. That maybe even if we’re not always so glad to be here, it’s our task to immerse ourselves anyway: wade straight through it, right through the cesspool, while keeping eyes and hearts open. And in the midst of our dying, as we rise from the organic and sink back ignominiously into the organic, it is a glory and a privilege to love what Death doesn’t touch.
Donna Tartt (The Goldfinch)
If Jesus came back and saw what was being done in his name, he'd never stop throwing up.
Woody Allen (Hannah and Her Sisters)
I have as much authority as the Pope. I just don’t have as many people who believe it.
George Carlin
If chaos is a necessary step in the organization of one's universe, then I was well on my way.
Wendelin Van Draanen (Flipped)
Governments want efficient technicians, not human beings, because human beings become dangerous to governments – and to organized religions as well. That is why governments and religious organizations seek to control education.
J. Krishnamurti (Education and the Significance of Life)
No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream. Hill House, not sane, stood by itself against its hills, holding darkness within; it had stood so for eighty years and might stand for eighty more. Within, walls continued upright, bricks met neatly, floors were firm, and doors were sensibly shut; silence lay steadily against the wood and stone of Hill House, and whatever walked there, walked alone.
Shirley Jackson (The Haunting of Hill House)
My mind is a warehouse of carefully organized human emotions. I lock away the things that do not serve me.
Tahereh Mafi (Destroy Me (Shatter Me, #1.5))
They’re evacuating the younger kids and everyone’s meeting in the Great Hall to get organized. We’re fighting.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7))
I waited patiently - years - for the pendulum to swing the other way, for men to start reading Jane Austen, learn how to knit, pretend to love cosmos, organize scrapbook parties, and make out with each other while we leer. And then we'd say, Yeah, he's a Cool Guy.
Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl)
If I didn't think, I'd be much happier; if I didn't have any sex organs, I wouldn't waver on the brink of nervous emotion and tears all the time.
Sylvia Plath (The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath)
Politeness is organized indifference.
Paul Valéry
There is no reason why good cannot triumph as often as evil. The triumph of anything is a matter of organization. If there are such things as angels, I hope that they are organized along the lines of the Mafia.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (The Sirens of Titan)
All progress is based upon a universal innate desire on the part of every organism to live beyond its income
Samuel Butler (The Way of All Flesh)
There is no female mind. The brain is not an organ of sex. As well speak of a female liver.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman (Women and Economics)
I have a meanness inside me, real as an organ. Slit me at my belly and it might slide out, meaty and dark, drop on the floor so you could stomp on it.
Gillian Flynn (Dark Places)
I believe in God, only I spell it Nature.
Frank Lloyd Wright (Truth Against the World: Frank Lloyd Wright Speaks for an Organic Architecture)
The human brain is a complex organ with the wonderful power of enabling man to find reasons for continuing to believe whatever it is that he wants to believe.
Voltaire
Science may provide the most useful way to organize empirical, reproducible data, but its power to do so is predicated on its inability to grasp the most central aspects of human life: hope, fear, love, hate, beauty, envy, honor, weakness, striving, suffering, virtue.
Paul Kalanithi (When Breath Becomes Air)
The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanly sensitive. To him... a touch is a blow, a sound is a noise, a misfortune is a tragedy, a joy is an ecstasy, a friend is a lover, a lover is a god, and failure is death. Add to this cruelly delicate organism the overpowering necessity to create, create, create -- so that without the creating of music or poetry or books or buildings or something of meaning, his very breath is cut off from him. He must create, must pour out creation. By some strange, unknown, inward urgency he is not really alive unless he is creating.
Pearl S. Buck
If he can only perform good or only perform evil, then he is a clockwork orange—meaning that he has the appearance of an organism lovely with colour and juice but is in fact only a clockwork toy to be wound up by God or the Devil.
Anthony Burgess (A Clockwork Orange)
Civilization will not attain to its perfection until the last stone from the last church falls on the last priest.
Émile Zola
Sometimes life gets in your way. it gets all up in your damn way. But it doesn't get all up in your damn way because it wants you to just give up and let it take control. Life doesn't get all up in your damn way because it just wants you to hand it all over and be carried along. Life wants you to fight it Learn how to make it your own. it wants you to grab and axe and hack through the wood. It wants you to get a sledgehammer and break through concrete. It wants you to grab a torch and burn through the metal and steel until you can reach through and grab it. Life wants you to grab all the organized, the alphabetized, the chronological, the sequenced. It wants you to mix it all together, stir it up, blend it.
Colleen Hoover (Slammed (Slammed, #1))
Violent, irrational, intolerant, allied to racism and tribalism and bigotry, invested in ignorance and hostile to free inquiry, contemptuous of women and coercive toward children: organized religion ought to have a great deal on its conscience.
Christopher Hitchens (God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything)
Almost any sect, cult, or religion will legislate its creed into law if it acquires the political power to do so.
Robert A. Heinlein
My brain? That's my second favorite organ.
Woody Allen
Loneliness: there is no organ that can take it all.
Nicole Krauss (The History of Love)
It's like a razor blade edging its way through my organs, shredding me, all I can think is: It will kill me, it will kill me, it will kill me. And I don't care.
Lauren Oliver (Delirium (Delirium, #1))
I don't care a damn about men who are loyal to the people who pay them, to organizations...I don't think even my country means all that much. There are many countries in our blood, aren't there, but only one person. Would the world be in the mess it is if we were loyal to love and not to countries?
Graham Greene (Our Man in Havana)
when you meet that person. a person. one of your soulmates. let the connection. relationship. be what it is. it may be five mins. five hours. five days. five months. five years. a lifetime. five lifetimes. let it manifest itself the way it is meant to. it has an organic destiny. this way if it stays or if it leaves, you will be softer. from having been loved this authentically. souls come into. return. open. and sweep through your life for a myriad of reasons. let them be who. and what they are meant.
Nayyirah Waheed
If there is a God, atheism must seem to Him as less of an insult than religion.
Edmond de Goncourt
I don't know how you feel, but I'm pretty sick of church people. You know what they ought to do with churches? Tax them. If holy people are so interested in politics, government, and public policy, let them pay the price of admission like everybody else. The Catholic Church alone could wipe out the national debt if all you did was tax their real estate.
George Carlin
Religion is about turning untested belief into unshakable truth through the power of institutions and the passage of time.
Richard Dawkins
God save us from religion.
David Eddings
The romantic contrast between modern industry that “destroys nature” and our ancestors who “lived in harmony with nature” is groundless. Long before the Industrial Revolution, Homo sapiens held the record among all organisms for driving the most plant and animal species to their extinctions. We have the dubious distinction of being the deadliest species in the annals of life.
Yuval Noah Harari (From Animals into Gods: A Brief History of Humankind)
I liked the feeling of love,' [Jonas] confessed. He glanced nervously at the speaker on the wall, reassuring himself that no one was listening. 'I wish we still had that,' he whispered. 'Of course,' he added quickly, 'I do understand that it wouldn't work very well. And that it's much better to be organized the way we are now. I can see that it was a dangerous way to live.' ...'Still,' he said slowly, almost to himself, 'I did like the light they made. And the warmth.
Lois Lowry (The Giver (The Giver, #1))
But race is the child of racism, not the father. And the process of naming “the people” has never been a matter of genealogy and physiognomy so much as one of hierarchy. Difference in hue and hair is old. But the belief in the preeminence of hue and hair, the notion that these factors can correctly organize a society and that they signify deeper attributes, which are indelible—this is the new idea at the heart of these new people who have been brought up hopelessly, tragically, deceitfully, to believe that they are white.
Ta-Nehisi Coates (Between the World and Me)
I am not a Sunday morning inside four walls with clean blood and organized drawers. I am the hurricane setting fire to the forests at night when no one else is alive or awake however you choose to see it and I live in my own flames sometimes burning too bright and too wild to make things last or handle myself or anyone else and so I run. run run run far and wide until my bones ache and lungs split and it feels good. Hear that people? It feels good because I am the slave and ruler of my own body and I wish to do with it exactly as I please
Charlotte Eriksson (You're Doing Just Fine)
Do you have a Wish?' he asked, referring to this organization, The Genie Foundation, which is in the business of granting sick kids one wish. 'No' I said. 'I used my Wish pre-Miracle.' 'What'd you do?' I sighed loudly. 'I was thirteen,' I said. 'Not Disney,' he said. I said nothing. 'You did not go to Disney World.' I said nothing. 'HAZEL GRACE!' he shouted. 'You did not use your one dying Wish to go to Disney World with your parents.' 'Also Epcot Center,' I mumbled. 'Oh, my God,' Augustus said. 'I can't believe I had a crush on a girl with such cliché wishes.
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
Colin decided then and there that the female mind was a strange and incomprehensible organ - one which no man should even attempt to understand. There wasn't a woman alive who could go from point A to B without stopping at C, D, X, and 12 along the way.
Julia Quinn (Romancing Mister Bridgerton (Bridgertons, #4))
The various modes of worship which prevailed in the Roman world were all considered by the people as equally true; by the philosopher as equally false; and by the magistrate as equally useful.
Edward Gibbon (The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire)
One of the greatest tragedies in mankind's entire history may be that morality was hijacked by religion.
Arthur C. Clarke
The brain is a wonderful organ; it starts working the moment you get up in the morning and does not stop until you get into the office.
Robert Frost
Sometimes he wakes so far from himself that he can’t even remember who he is. “Where am I?” he asks, desperate, and then, “Who am I? Who am I?” And then he hears, so close to his ear that it is as if the voice is originating inside his own head, Willem’s whispered incantation. “You’re Jude St. Francis. You are my oldest, dearest friend. You’re the son of Harold Stein and Julia Altman. You’re the friend of Malcolm Irvine, of Jean-Baptiste Marion, of Richard Goldfarb, of Andy Contractor, of Lucien Voigt, of Citizen van Straaten, of Rhodes Arrowsmith, of Elijah Kozma, of Phaedra de los Santos, of the Henry Youngs. “You’re a New Yorker. You live in SoHo. You volunteer for an arts organization; you volunteer for a food kitchen. “You’re a swimmer. You’re a baker. You’re a cook. You’re a reader. You have a beautiful voice, though you never sing anymore. You’re an excellent pianist. You’re an art collector. You write me lovely messages when I’m away. You’re patient. You’re generous. You’re the best listener I know. You’re the smartest person I know, in every way. You’re the bravest person I know, in every way. “You’re a lawyer. You’re the chair of the litigation department at Rosen Pritchard and Klein. You love your job; you work hard at it. “You’re a mathematician. You’re a logician. You’ve tried to teach me, again and again. “You were treated horribly. You came out on the other end. You were always you.
Hanya Yanagihara (A Little Life)
Who am I? Who am I?” “You’re Jude St. Francis. You are my oldest, dearest friend. You’re the son of Harold Stein and Julia Altman. You’re the friend of Malcolm Irvine, of Jean-Baptiste Marion, of Richard Goldfarb, of Andy Contractor, of Lucien Voigt, of Citizen van Straaten, of Rhodes Arrowsmith, of Elijah Kozma, of Phaedra de los Santos, of the Henry Youngs. You’re a New Yorker. You live in SoHo. You volunteer for an arts organization; you volunteer for a food kitchen. You’re a swimmer. You’re a baker. You’re a cook. You’re a reader. You have a beautiful voice, though you never sing anymore. You’re an excellent pianist. You’re an art collector. You write me lovely messages when I’m away. You’re patient. You’re generous. You’re the best listener I know. You’re the smartest person I know, in every way. You’re the bravest person I know, in every way. You’re a lawyer. You’re the chair of the litigation department at Rosen Pritchard and Klein. You love your job; you work hard at it. You’re a mathematician. You’re a logician. You’ve tried to teach me, again and again. You were treated horribly. You came out on the other end. You were always you.” "And who are you?" "I'm Willem Ragnarsson. And I will never let you go.
Hanya Yanagihara (A Little Life)
His absence will haunt their hallways, and he will be a space they can't fill. And then time will pass, and the hole will be gone, like when an organ is removed and the body's fluids flow into the space it leaves. Humans can't tolerate emptiness for long.
Veronica Roth (Divergent (Divergent, #1))
The stronger must dominate and not mate with the weaker, which would signify the sacrifice of its own higher nature. Only the born weakling can look upon this principle as cruel, and if he does so it is merely because he is of a feebler nature and narrower mind; for if such a law did not direct the process of evolution then the higher development of organic life would not be conceivable at all.
Adolf Hitler
The purpose of separation of church and state is to keep forever from these shores the ceaseless strife that has soaked the soil of Europe in blood for centuries. [Letter objecting to the use of government land for churches, 1803]
James Madison
How is it that hardly any major religion has looked at science and concluded, “This is better than we thought! The Universe is much bigger than our prophets said, grander, more subtle, more elegant?” Instead they say, “No, no, no! My god is a little god, and I want him to stay that way.” A religion, old or new, that stressed the magnificence of the Universe as revealed by modern science might be able to draw forth reserves of reverence and awe hardly tapped by the conventional faiths.
Carl Sagan (Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space)
Being Adam Parrish was a complicated thing, a wonder of muscles and organs, synapses and nerves. He was a miracle of moving parts, a study in survival. The most important thing to Adam Parrish, though, had always been free will, the ability to be his own master. This was the important thing. It had always been the important thing. This was what it was to be Adam.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
Humm humm haaa. Rahmumm humm haaaa," intoned Opal, finishing her chant. "Peace be inside me, tolerance all around me, forgiveness in my path. Now, Mervall, show me where the filthy human is so that I may feed him his organs.
Eoin Colfer (The Time Paradox (Artemis Fowl, #6))
I am a Jew. Hath not a Jew eyes? hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions? fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject to the same diseases, healed by the same means, warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer, as a Christian is? If you prick us, do we not bleed? if you tickle us, do we not laugh? if you poison us, do we not die? and if you wrong us, shall we not revenge? If we are like you in the rest, we will resemble you in that. If a Jew wrong a Christian, what is his humility? Revenge. If a Christian wrong a Jew, what should his sufferance be by Christian example? Why, revenge. The villany you teach me, I will execute, and it shall go hard but I will better the instruction.
William Shakespeare
Religion is still useful among the herd - that it helps their orderly conduct as nothing else could. The crude human animal is in-eradicably superstitious, and there is every biological reason why they should be. Take away his Christian god and saints, and he will worship something else...
H.P. Lovecraft
To be fair, much of the Bible is not systematically evil but just plain weird, as you would expect of a chaotically cobbled-together anthology of disjointed documents, composed, revised, translated, distorted and 'improved' by hundreds of anonymous authors, editors and copyists, unknown to us and mostly unknown to each other, spanning nine centuries
Richard Dawkins (The God Delusion)
Half the people in the world think that the metaphors of their religious traditions, for example, are facts. And the other half contends that they are not facts at all. As a result we have people who consider themselves believers because they accept metaphors as facts, and we have others who classify themselves as atheists because they think religious metaphors are lies.
Joseph Campbell (Thou Art That: Transforming Religious Metaphor)
Sometimes you want to say, “I love you, but…” Yet the “but” takes away the ‘I love you’. In love their are no ‘buts’ or ‘if’s’ or ‘when’. It’s just there, and always. No beginning, no end. It’s the condition-less state of the heart. Not a feeling that comes and goes at the whim of the emotions. It is there in our heart, a part of our heart…eventually grafting itself into each limb and cell of our bodies. Love changes our brain, the way we move and talk. Love lives in our spirit and graces us with its presence each day, until death. To say “I love you, but….” is to say, “I did not love you at all”. I say this to you now: I love you, with no beginning, no end. I love you as you have become an extra necessary organ in my body. I love you as only a girl could love a boy. Without fear. Without expectations. Wanting nothing in return, except that you allow me to keep you here in my heart, that I may always know your strength, your eyes, and your spirit that gave me freedom and let me fly.
Coco J. Ginger
LOG ENTRY: SOL 381 I’ve been thinking about laws on Mars. Yeah, I know, it’s a stupid thing to think about, but I have a lot of free time. There’s an international treaty saying no country can lay claim to anything that’s not on Earth. And by another treaty, if you’re not in any country’s territory, maritime law applies. So Mars is “international waters.” NASA is an American nonmilitary organization, and it owns the Hab. So while I’m in the Hab, American law applies. As soon as I step outside, I’m in international waters. Then when I get in the rover, I’m back to American law. Here’s the cool part: I will eventually go to Schiaparelli and commandeer the Ares 4 lander. Nobody explicitly gave me permission to do this, and they can’t until I’m aboard Ares 4 and operating the comm system. After I board Ares 4, before talking to NASA, I will take control of a craft in international waters without permission. That makes me a pirate! A space pirate!
Andy Weir (The Martian)
Your way of life is sinful and wrong," he said fiercely. Thus says a man who admits to worshipping a God who vilifies pleasure, relegates women to roles that are little more than servants and broodmares, though they are the backbone of your church, and seeks to control his worshippers through guilt and fear.
P.C. Cast (Betrayed (House of Night, #2))
The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. ...We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. ...In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons...who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.
Edward L. Bernays (Propaganda)
I am not a believer in love at first sight. For love, in its truest form, is not the thing of starry-eyed or star-crossed lovers, it is far more organic, requiring nurturing and time to fully bloom, and, as such, seen best not in its callow youth but in its wrinkled maturity. Like all living things, love, too, struggles against hardship, and in the process sheds its fatuous skin to expose one composed of more than just a storm of emotion–one of loyalty and divine friendship. Agape. And though it may be temporarily blinded by adversity, it never gives in or up, holding tight to lofty ideals that transcend this earth and time–while its counterfeit simply concludes it was mistaken and quickly runs off to find the next real thing.
Richard Paul Evans (The Letter (The Christmas Box, #3))
I have always, essentially, been waiting. Waiting to become something else, waiting to be that person I always thought I was on the verge of becoming, waiting for that life I thought I would have. In my head, I was always one step away. In high school, I was biding my time until I could become the college version of myself, the one my mind could see so clearly. In college, the post-college “adult” person was always looming in front of me, smarter, stronger, more organized. Then the married person, then the person I’d become when we have kids. For twenty years, literally, I have waited to become the thin version of myself, because that’s when life will really begin. And through all that waiting, here I am. My life is passing, day by day, and I am waiting for it to start. I am waiting for that time, that person, that event when my life will finally begin. I love movies about “The Big Moment” – the game or the performance or the wedding day or the record deal, the stories that split time with that key event, and everything is reframed, before it and after it, because it has changed everything. I have always wanted this movie-worthy event, something that will change everything and grab me out of this waiting game into the whirlwind in front of me. I cry and cry at these movies, because I am still waiting for my own big moment. I had visions of life as an adventure, a thing to be celebrated and experienced, but all I was doing was going to work and coming home, and that wasn’t what it looked like in the movies. John Lennon once said, “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.” For me, life is what was happening while I was busy waiting for my big moment. I was ready for it and believed that the rest of my life would fade into the background, and that my big moment would carry me through life like a lifeboat. The Big Moment, unfortunately, is an urban myth. Some people have them, in a sense, when they win the Heisman or become the next American Idol. But even that football player or that singer is living a life made up of more than that one moment. Life is a collection of a million, billion moments, tiny little moments and choices, like a handful of luminous, glowing pearl. It takes so much time, and so much work, and those beads and moments are so small, and so much less fabulous and dramatic than the movies. But this is what I’m finding, in glimpses and flashes: this is it. This is it, in the best possible way. That thing I’m waiting for, that adventure, that move-score-worthy experience unfolding gracefully. This is it. Normal, daily life ticking by on our streets and sidewalks, in our houses and apartments, in our beds and at our dinner tables, in our dreams and prayers and fights and secrets – this pedestrian life is the most precious thing any of use will ever experience.
Shauna Niequist (Cold Tangerines: Celebrating the Extraordinary Nature of Everyday Life)
But all our phrasing—race relations, racial chasm, racial justice, racial profiling, white privilege, even white supremacy—serves to obscure that racism is a visceral experience, that it dislodges brains, blocks airways, rips muscle, extracts organs, cracks bones, breaks teeth. You must never look away from this. You must always remember that the sociology, the history, the economics, the graphs, the charts, the regressions all land, with great violence, upon the body.
Ta-Nehisi Coates (Between the World and Me)
I never felt like that before. Maybe it could be depression, like you get. I can understand how you suffer now when you're depressed; I always thought you liked it and I thought you could have snapped yourself out any time, if not alone then by means of the mood organ. But when you get that depressed you don't care. Apathy, because you've lost a sense of worth. It doesn't matter whether you feel better because you have no worth.
Philip K. Dick (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?)
...legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.
Thomas Jefferson (Letters of Thomas Jefferson)
But depression wasn't the word. This was a plunge encompassing sorrow and revulsion far beyond the personal: a sick, drenching nausea at all humanity and human endeavor from the dawn of time. The writhing loathsomeness of the biological order. Old age, sickness, death. No escape for anyone. Even the beautiful ones were like soft fruit about to spoil. And yet somehow people still kept fucking and breeding and popping out new fodder for the grave, producing more and more new beings to suffer like this was some kind of redemptive, or good, or even somehow morally admirable thing: dragging more innocent creatures into the lose-lose game. Squirming babies and plodding, complacent, hormone-drugged moms. Oh, isn't he cute? Awww. Kids shouting and skidding in the playground with no idea what future Hells await them: boring jobs and ruinous mortgages and bad marriages and hair loss and hip replacements and lonely cups of coffee in an empty house and a colostomy bag at the hospital. Most people seemed satisfied with the thin decorative glaze and the artful stage lighting that sometimes, made the bedrock atrocity of the human predicament look somewhat more mysterious or less abhorrent. People gambled and golfed and planted gardens and traded stocks and had sex and bought new cars and practiced yoga and worked and prayed and redecorated their homes and got worked up over the news and fussed over their children and gossiped about their neighbors and pored over restaurant reviews and founded charitable organizations and supported political candidates and attended the U.S. Open and dined and travelled and distracted themselves with all kinds of gadgets and devices, flooding themselves incessantly with information and texts and communication and entertainment from every direction to try to make themselves forget it: where we were, what we were. But in a strong light there was no good spin you could put on it. It was rotten from top to bottom.
Donna Tartt (The Goldfinch)
That is the idea -- that we should all be wicked if we did not hold to the Christian religion. It seems to me that the people who have held to it have been for the most part extremely wicked. You find this curious fact, that the more intense has been the religion of any period and the more profound has been the dogmatic belief, the greater has been the cruelty and the worse has been the state of affairs. In the so-called ages of faith, when men really did believe the Christian religion in all its completeness, there was the Inquisition, with all its tortures; there were millions of unfortunate women burned as witches; and there was every kind of cruelty practiced upon all sorts of people in the name of religion. You find as you look around the world that every single bit of progress in humane feeling, every improvement in the criminal law, every step toward the diminution of war, every step toward better treatment of the colored races, or every mitigation of slavery, every moral progress that there has been in the world, has been consistently opposed by the organized churches of the world. I say quite deliberately that the Christian religion, as organized in its churches, has been and still is the principal enemy of moral progress in the world. You may think that I am going too far when I say that that is still so. I do not think that I am. Take one fact. You will bear with me if I mention it. It is not a pleasant fact, but the churches compel one to mention facts that are not pleasant. Supposing that in this world that we live in today an inexperienced girl is married to a syphilitic man; in that case the Catholic Church says, 'This is an indissoluble sacrament. You must endure celibacy or stay together. And if you stay together, you must not use birth control to prevent the birth of syphilitic children.' Nobody whose natural sympathies have not been warped by dogma, or whose moral nature was not absolutely dead to all sense of suffering, could maintain that it is right and proper that that state of things should continue. That is only an example. There are a great many ways in which, at the present moment, the church, by its insistence upon what it chooses to call morality, inflicts upon all sorts of people undeserved and unnecessary suffering. And of course, as we know, it is in its major part an opponent still of progress and improvement in all the ways that diminish suffering in the world, because it has chosen to label as morality a certain narrow set of rules of conduct which have nothing to do with human happiness; and when you say that this or that ought to be done because it would make for human happiness, they think that has nothing to do with the matter at all. 'What has human happiness to do with morals? The object of morals is not to make people happy.
Bertrand Russell (Why I Am Not a Christian and Other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects)
If you imagine the 4,500-bilion-odd years of Earth's history compressed into a normal earthly day, then life begins very early, about 4 A.M., with the rise of the first simple, single-celled organisms, but then advances no further for the next sixteen hours. Not until almost 8:30 in the evening, with the day five-sixths over, has Earth anything to show the universe but a restless skin of microbes. Then, finally, the first sea plants appear, followed twenty minutes later by the first jellyfish and the enigmatic Ediacaran fauna first seen by Reginald Sprigg in Australia. At 9:04 P.M. trilobites swim onto the scene, followed more or less immediately by the shapely creatures of the Burgess Shale. Just before 10 P.M. plants begin to pop up on the land. Soon after, with less than two hours left in the day, the first land creatures follow. Thanks to ten minutes or so of balmy weather, by 10:24 the Earth is covered in the great carboniferous forests whose residues give us all our coal, and the first winged insects are evident. Dinosaurs plod onto the scene just before 11 P.M. and hold sway for about three-quarters of an hour. At twenty-one minutes to midnight they vanish and the age of mammals begins. Humans emerge one minute and seventeen seconds before midnight. The whole of our recorded history, on this scale, would be no more than a few seconds, a single human lifetime barely an instant. Throughout this greatly speeded-up day continents slide about and bang together at a clip that seems positively reckless. Mountains rise and melt away, ocean basins come and go, ice sheets advance and withdraw. And throughout the whole, about three times every minute, somewhere on the planet there is a flash-bulb pop of light marking the impact of a Manson-sized meteor or one even larger. It's a wonder that anything at all can survive in such a pummeled and unsettled environment. In fact, not many things do for long.
Bill Bryson (A Short History of Nearly Everything)
It sounds like a fairy-tale, but not only that; this story of what man by his science and practical inventions has achieved on this earth, where he first appeared as a weakly member of the animal kingdom, and on which each individual of his species must ever again appear as a helpless infant... is a direct fulfilment of all, or of most, of the dearest wishes in his fairy-tales. All these possessions he has acquired through culture. Long ago he formed an ideal conception of omnipotence and omniscience which he embodied in his gods. Whatever seemed unattainable to his desires - or forbidden to him - he attributed to these gods. One may say, therefore, that these gods were the ideals of his culture. Now he has himself approached very near to realizing this ideal, he has nearly become a god himself. But only, it is true, in the way that ideals are usually realized in the general experience of humanity. Not completely; in some respects not at all, in others only by halves. Man has become a god by means of artificial limbs, so to speak, quite magnificent when equipped with all his accessory organs; but they do not grow on him and they still give him trouble at times... Future ages will produce further great advances in this realm of culture, probably inconceivable now, and will increase man's likeness to a god still more.
Sigmund Freud (Civilization and Its Discontents)