Spontaneous Friends Quotes

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When the two people who thus discover that they are on the same secret road are of different sexes, the friendship which arises between them will very easily pass – may pass in the first half hour – into erotic love. Indeed, unless they are physically repulsive to each other or unless one or both already loves elsewhere, it is almost certain to do so sooner or later. And conversely, erotic love may lead to Friendship between the lovers. But this, so far from obliterating the distinction between the two loves, puts it in a clearer light. If one who was first, in the deep and full sense, your Friend, is then gradually or suddenly revealed as also your lover you will certainly not want to share the Beloved’s erotic love with any third. But you will have no jealousy at all about sharing the Friendship. Nothing so enriches an erotic love as the discovery that the Beloved can deeply, truly and spontaneously enter into Friendship with the Friends you already had; to feel that not only are we two united by erotic love but we three or four or five are all travelers on the same quest, have all a common vision.
C.S. Lewis (Four Loves)
My whole teaching consists of two words, meditation and love. Meditate so that you can feel immense silence, and love so that your life can become a song, a dance, a celebration. You will have to move between the two, and if you can move easily, if you can move without any effort, you have learned the greatest thing in life.
Osho (Come, come, yet again come: Spontaneous talks given to disciples and friends of Osho in Gautama the Buddha Auditorium, Poona, India)
If they want to flirt or initiate a friendship, they should carefully avoid giving the impression they are taking the initiative; men do not like tomboys, nor bluestockings, nor thinking women; too much audacity, culture, intelligence, or character frightens them. In most novels, as George Eliot observes, it is the dumb, blond heroine who outshines the virile brunette; and in The Mill on the Floss, Maggie tries in vain to reverse the roles; in the end she dies and it is blond Lucy who marries Stephen. In The Last of the Mohicans, vapid Alice wins the hero’s heart and not valiant Cora; in Little Women kindly Jo is only a childhood friend for Laurie; he vows his love to curly-haired and insipid Amy. To be feminine is to show oneself as weak, futile, passive, and docile. The girl is supposed not only to primp and dress herself up but also to repress her spontaneity and substitute for it the grace and charm she has been taught by her elder sisters. Any self-assertion will take away from her femininity and her seductiveness.
Simone de Beauvoir (The Second Sex)
It was a relationship, and also not a relationship. Each of our gestures felt spontaneous, and if from the outside we resembled a couple, that was an interesting coincidence for us. We developed a joke about it, which was meaningless to everyone including ourselves: what is a friend? we would say humorously. What is a conversation?
Sally Rooney (Conversations with Friends)
Some of the most thrilling things in life are done on impulse.
Syrie James (The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen)
It was at such moments that for an instant he ceased to be a reasoning machine and betrayed his human love for admiration and applause. The same singularly proud and reserved nature which turned away with disdain from popular notoriety was capable of being moved to its depth by spontaneous wonder and praise from a friend.
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Return of Sherlock Holmes)
My true friends always gave me this supreme proof of attachment: a spontaneous aversion to the men I loved.
Colette
I made friends easily, probably because I was spontaneous and average, which didn't intimidate people. It's the quiet ones kids are unsure about.
Julie Gonzalez (Imaginary Enemy)
Love has no time constraints.There is no time frame for when a person can fall in love with another,it just happens.It's spontaneous, unpredictable, it's timeless.
Becky Andrews (The Forgotten Night)
He wasn’t steaming anymore, but the incident on the ice bridge had really freaked Jason out. Leo hadn’t seemed to realize that he had smoke coming out his ears and flames dancing through his hair. If Leo started spontaneously combusting every time he got excited, they were going to have a tough time taking him anywhere. Jason imagined trying to get food at a restaurant. I’ll have a cheeseburger and—Ahhh! My friend’s on fire! Get me a bucket!
Rick Riordan (The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus, #1))
Frequently, beauty is playful like dancing sunlight, it cannot be predicted, and in the most unlikely scene or situation can suddenly emerge. This spontaneity and playfulness often subverts our self-importance and throws our plans and intentions into disarray. Without intending it, we find ourselves coming alive with a sense of celebration and delight. The pedestrian sequence of a working day breaks, a new door opens and the heart recognizes the silent majesty of the ordinary. The things we never notice, like health, friends and love, emerge from their subdued presence and stand out in their true radiance as gifts we could never have earned or achieved. Beauty
John O'Donohue (Divine Beauty: The Invisible Embrace)
When you are prepared, you are able to subdue your fear, control your nerves, channel your energy, and enter that state of highly alert relaxation that is spontaneity’s best friend.
Michael Caine (Blowing the Bloody Doors Off: And Other Lessons in Life)
Even a woman who’s shy in public still sings in the car when she hears her favorite song. She has a side to her that others rarely see, a side that is silly, playful, and spontaneous. Likewise, there are strong, certain women who go nuts for expensive French lingerie, and playful, spontaneous women who’ve disciplined themselves to meditate for thirty minutes every morning for their entire adult life. Do all of their friends know this about them? Not likely.
Matthew Hussey (Get the Guy: Learn Secrets of the Male Mind to Find the Man You Want and the Love You Deserve)
Perception of friendliness differs from one culture to another. While it is true that people of one country may tend to be more spontaneously friendly to strangers than people of another country, I have found friendly people everywhere in the world, especially if I tried to make the first gesture.
Clifford A.L. Becker (Conversations with a World Traveler)
The path to accepting your sexuality has to start somewhere. For those identify as heterosexual, the childhood bliss of an early crush is typically encouraged and praised. Milestones such as your first date and the prom are celebrated by parents and friends. But when you’re anything other than straight, it’s more complicated; your growth gets shrouded and stunted. That’s why a lot of queer people, when they fall in love and get into a relationship for the first time, revert to a kind of prepubescent puppy love: spontaneous, impulsive, obsessive, and ecstatic. I’ve heard many people express annoyance at friends who “just came out and it’s totally cool and whatever, but do they have to talk about it all the time?” My answer to that is “Yes. Yes, they do. Don’t you remember puppy love? Well, imagine if you had to hide it for twenty years. So yeah, if they wanna gush about it, let them gush. There’s a first time for everything.
Hannah Hart (Buffering: Unshared Tales of a Life Fully Loaded)
Simply put, a woman’s brain is not her friend when it comes to confidence. We think too much and we think about the wrong things. Thinking harder and harder and harder won’t solve our issues, though, it won’t make us more confident, and it most certainly freezes decision making, not to mention action. Remember, the female brain works differently from the male brain; we really do have more going on, we are more keenly aware of everything happening around us, and that all becomes part of our cognitive stew. Ruminating drains the confidence from us. Those negative thoughts, and nightmare scenarios masquerading as problem solving, spin on an endless loop. We render ourselves unable to be in the moment or to trust our instincts because we are captive to those distracting, destructive thoughts, which gradually squeeze all the spontaneity out of life and work. We have got to stop ruminating.
Katty Kay (The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance – What Women Should Know)
If you have seen your teacher only in school, it feels strange to come across them in a market. If you have seen your milkman or newspaper boy only at sunrise, it feels strange to see them in broad daylight when they come to collect payment. When a friend or loved one breaks away from your circle, it feels strange to see them in their new circle. It is not jealously. It is a spontaneous and neutral feeling. It turns into jealousy when it gets mixed with our fears and insecurities. Accept this feeling as-it-is before it turns into jealousy.
Shunya
When it first emerged, Twitter was widely derided as a frivolous distraction that was mostly good for telling your friends what you had for breakfast. Now it is being used to organize and share news about the Iranian political protests, to provide customer support for large corporations, to share interesting news items, and a thousand other applications that did not occur to the founders when they dreamed up the service in 2006. This is not just a case of cultural exaptation: people finding a new use for a tool designed to do something else. In Twitter's case, the users have been redesigning the tool itself. The convention of replying to another user with the @ symbol was spontaneously invented by the Twitter user base. Early Twitter users ported over a convention from the IRC messaging platform and began grouping a topic or event by the "hash-tag" as in "#30Rock" or "inauguration." The ability to search a live stream of tweets - which is likely to prove crucial to Twitter's ultimate business model, thanks to its advertising potential - was developed by another start-up altogether. Thanks to these innovations, following a live feed of tweets about an event - political debates or Lost episodes - has become a central part of the Twitter experience. But for the first year of Twitter's existence, that mode of interaction would have been technically impossible using Twitter. It's like inventing a toaster oven and then looking around a year later and discovering that all your customers have, on their own, figured out a way to turn it into a microwave.
Steven Johnson (Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation)
The French poet Mallarmé claimed that “everything in the world exists to end up in a book,” and if that’s true, and that even every boy is a book, Federico was undoubtedly created by the pen of Keats or some other tormented Romantic poet; while Matteo was pure passion, like Shakespeare’s Romeo: spontaneous, intense, and impetuously real.
Mirella Muffarotto (Soccer Sweetheart)
Throughout my life, I have always felt torn between my dual contradictory natures. I'm the obedient daughter and devoted friend, but also a self-destructive rebel. I thrive on structure and treasure spontaneity. I am smart, but ignorant. Depressed, but optimistic. Confident but insecure. I have often asked myself which "me" is the true version.
Elyse Schein (Identical Strangers: A Memoir of Twins Separated and Reunited)
Excuse me, it's your place as a friend to tell them when they're almost dating a guy who can't even use the word "gay" without spontaneously combusting
Alice Oseman (I Was Born for This (I Was Born for This, #1))
In the end she read it. It seemed to me that she shrank, as if I had unloaded a weight on her. And I had the impression that she was making a painful effort to free from some corner of herself the old Lila, the one who read, wrote, drew, made plans spontaneously—the naturalness of an instinctive reaction. When she succeeded, everything seemed pleasantly light.
Elena Ferrante (My Brilliant Friend (The Neapolitan Novels, #1))
It was a relationship, and also not a relationship. Each of our gestures felt spontaneous, and if from the outside we resembled a couple, that was an interesting coincidence for us.
Sally Rooney (Conversations with Friends)
I like to work in watercolor, with as little under-drawing as I can get away with. I like the unpredictability of a medium which is affected as much by humidity, gravity, the way that heavier particles in the wash settle into the undulations of the paper surface, as by whatever I wish to do with it. In other mediums you have more control, you are responsible for every mark on the page — but with watercolor you are in a dialogue with the paint, it responds to you and you respond to it in turn. Printmaking is also like this, it has an unpredictable element. This encourages an intuitive response, a spontaneity which allows magic to happen on the page. When I begin an illustration, I usually work up from small sketches — which indicate in a simple way something of the atmosphere or dynamics of an illustration; then I do drawings on a larger scale supported by studies from models — usually friends — if figures play a large part in the picture. When I've reached a stage where the drawing looks good enough I'll transfer it to watercolor paper, but I like to leave as much unresolved as possible before starting to put on washes. This allows for an interaction with the medium itself, a dialogue between me and the paint. Otherwise it is too much like painting by number, or a one-sided conversation.
Alan Lee
The same singularly proud and reserved nature which turned away with disdain from popular notoriety was capable of being moved to its depths by spontaneous wonder and praise from a friend.
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Complete Sherlock Holmes)
On 11 September 2012 crowds of friendly locals in Kabul, Afghanistan, were chanting the usual ‘Death to America’ slogans. At the same time American flags were torched from London to Sydney. And in Benghazi, Libya, a group of ‘spontaneous protesters’ arrived at the US consulate with rocket-propelled grenades and savagely murdered the US ambassador. In Washington, members of the Obama administration were, as we have already seen, showing that they weren’t taking any of this personally. It wasn’t about them and it certainly wasn’t about their ambassador, who had in fact been murdered by terrorists in a pre-planned attack. The administration was still claiming all this was caused by an excerpt from an amateur film which had been up on YouTube for weeks.
Douglas Murray (Islamophilia)
1:116 IMPUDENT BANTER I have come to realize that the better friends I become with someone, the more impudent I get with him. Politeness is appropriate for strangers, but with a friend there's no holding back, no need for any restraint. So consider this. There is no closer friend than the Friend, no one who endures more outrageous behavior than that one, and no one more accepting of it, or responsive to, all the rank blurt and tease. Let the spontaneous metaphysical banter turn to flint, or get white-hot; it will still be held within the horizon of this Friendship.
Bahauddin (The Drowned Book: Ecstatic and Earthy Reflections of the Father of Rumi)
Lestrade and I sat silent for a moment, and then, with a spontaneous impulse, we both broke at clapping, as at the well-wrought crisis of a play. A flush of colour sprang to Holmes’s pale cheeks, and he bowed to us like the master dramatist who receives the homage of his audience. It was at such moments that for an instant he ceased to be a reasoning machine, and betrayed his human love for admiration and applause. The same singularly proud and reserved nature which turned away with disdain from popular notoriety was capable of being moved to its depths by spontaneous wonder and praise from a friend.
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Complete Sherlock Holmes)
You know what a miracle is. Not what Bakunin said. But another world's intrusion into this one. Most of the time we coexist peacefully, but when we do touch there's cataclysm. Like the church we hate, anarchists also believe in another world. Where revolutions break out spontaneous and leaderless, and the soul's talent for consensus allows the masses to work together without effort, automatic as the body itself. And yet, sena, if any of it should ever really happen that perfectly, I would also have to cry miracle. An anarchist miracle. Like your friend. He is too exactly and without flaw the thing we fight. In Mexico the privilegiado is always, to a finite percentage, redeemed -one of the people. Unmiraculous. But your friend, unless he's joking, is as terrifying to me as a Virgin appearing to an Indian.
Thomas Pynchon (The Crying of Lot 49)
After a heated dispute, we each undertook an assignment for the next class: to engage in one pleasurable activity and one philanthropic activity, and write about both. The results were life-changing. The afterglow of the “pleasurable” activity (hanging out with friends, or watching a movie, or eating a hot fudge sundae) paled in comparison with the effects of the kind action. When our philanthropic acts were spontaneous and called upon personal strengths, the whole day went better. One junior told about her nephew phoning for help with his third-grade arithmetic. After an hour of tutoring him, she was astonished to discover that “for the rest of the day, I could listen better, I was mellower, and people liked me much more than usual.” The exercise of kindness is a gratification, in contrast to a pleasure. As a gratification, it calls on your strengths to rise to an occasion and meet a challenge. Kindness is not accompanied by a separable stream of positive emotion like joy; rather, it consists in total engagement and in the loss of self-consciousness. Time stops.
Martin E.P. Seligman (Authentic Happiness: Using the New Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment)
We are thus in the presence of a new and stinging irony: the friends with their carefully developed theological speeches have not in fact produced more than spontaneously foolish and indeed almost blasphemous responses to the situation.
Gustavo Gutiérrez (On Job: God-Talk and the Suffering of the Innocent)
Many of us spontaneously anticipate how friends and colleagues will evaluate our choices; the quality and content of these anticipated judgments therefore matters. The expectation of intelligent gossip is a powerful motive for serious self-criticism
Daniel Kahneman (Thinking, Fast and Slow)
Well, on some level, it’s similar to the psychological phenomenon of helplessness, where the will to try is lost. You get to the point where you just assume that your spontaneous call to a friend will go to voicemail or an assistant, and you decide not to bother.
Zack Love (The Syrian Virgin (The Syrian Virgin, #1))
American medicine has no specific treatments for tinnitus, no understanding of its cause, and little success in alleviating it. My German friend thinks tinnitus results from chronic muscle tension in the head and neck, often associated with poor posture and stress.
Andrew Weil (Spontaneous Healing: How to Discover and Enhance Your Body's Natural Ability to Maintain and Heal Itself)
I had known him for fewer than four years, but friendship with Roger did not seem to follow the normal laws of time. 'I want all my friends to come up like weeds,' he had once written in a notebook, 'and I want to be a weed myself, spontaneous and unstoppable. I don't want the kind of friends one has to cultivate.' That caught it exactly. Spontaneous and unstoppable. Roger had not just loved the wild, he had been the wild. Not in the austere and chastening sense I had once understood the wild to be, but natural, vigorous, like a tree or a river.
Robert Macfarlane (The Wild Places)
Nothing so enriches an erotic love as the discovery that the Beloved can deeply, truly, and spontaneously enter into Friendship with the Friends you already had: to feel that not only are we two united by erotic love but we three or four or five are all travellers on the same quest, have all a common vision.
C.S. Lewis (The Four Loves)
Pay close attention. Listen carefully. Let's look at what happens when fear is in charge. With fear in charge, you can never fully relax, let your guard down, be your true self. You can't open up because you are afraid of how people will respond if they were to meet the real you. When fear is in charge, you simply cannot take that chance. Fear will not allow honesty, fear despises spontaneity, and fear refuses to believe in you. Fear may mean well, but it ruins everything by overprotecting you, insisting that you stay hidden and keep a low profile, that your time is coming....sometime later. Fear is bold, but insists that you be timid. Take a chance and there will be hell to pay: fear will call on its dear friend, shame, to meet you on the other side of your risk taking, to tell you what you should not have done. Fear will trip you, tackle you, smother you, do whatever it takes to cause you to hesitate, to stop you. In this way fear is fearless.
Thom Rutledge (Embracing Fear: How to Turn What Scares Us into Our Greatest Gift)
It was at such moments that for an instant he ceased to be a reasoning machine, and betrayed his human love for admiration and applause. The same singularly proud and reserved nature which turned away with disdain from popular notoriety was capable of being moved to its depths by spontaneous wonder and praise from a friend.
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Return of Sherlock Holmes (Wisehouse Classics Edition - with original illustrations by Sidney Paget))
Gentlemen,” he cried, “let me introduce you to the famous black pearl of the Borgias.” Lestrade and I sat silent for a moment, and then, with a spontaneous impulse, we both broke at clapping, as at the well-wrought crisis of a play. A flush of colour sprang to Holmes’s pale cheeks, and he bowed to us like the master dramatist who receives the homage of his audience. It was at such moments that for an instant he ceased to be a reasoning machine, and betrayed his human love for admiration and applause. The same singularly proud and reserved nature which turned away with disdain from popular notoriety was capable of being moved to its depths by spontaneous wonder and praise from a friend.
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Complete Sherlock Holmes)
Darkness fell, revealing a sparkling night sky so beautiful that we decided to sleep out under the stars. At gray dawn, Phyllis woke me with an urgent voice. “Bill, Bill,” she said, “when I woke up I saw this huge boulder beside me, but it wasn’t there last night. Look! Look!” she said and pointed next to her. It was the huge buffalo bull! He had come back during the night and lay down beside us to sleep. I was awestruck. I felt so honored, so grateful, so loved. I loved that buffalo with all my heart and soul. I felt like he knew it, and that was why he had come back to sleep with us. But maybe there’s a different reason. Judith Niles, a wise spiritual friend of mine recently told me that the spontaneous melody is “the voice of the soul.” The minute she said it I knew she was right. Now I feel sure that the creatures responded to “the voice of the soul” amplified through my body. When we human beings finally get it together the natural world is going to respond to us in more wonderful ways than we can ever begin to imagine.
William "Billy" Packer
Montagu argues that the human species was designed to develop “in ways that emphasize rather than minimize the childlike traits.” The human child naturally loves, is nonjudgmental, friendly, spontaneous, curious, open to new learning, etc. We cannot recover our innocence, our childlike qualities, until we have reclaimed and championed our Inner Child.
John Bradshaw (Healing the Shame That Binds You)
A cowboy is someone who loves his work. Since the hours are long—ten to fifteen hours a day—and the pay is $30 he has to. What's required of him is an odd mixture of physical vigor and maternalism. His part of the beef-raising industry is to birth and nurture calves and take care of their mothers. For the most part his work is done on horseback and in a lifetime he sees and comes to know more animals than people. The iconic myth surrounding him is built on American notions of heroism: the index of a man's value as measured in physical courage. Such ideas have perverted manliness into a self-absorbed race for cheap thrills. In a rancher's world, courage has less to do with facing danger than with acting spontaneously—usually on behalf of an animal or another rider. If a cow is stuck in a bog hole he throws a loop around her neck, takes his dally (a half hitch around the saddle horn), and pulls her out with horsepower. If a calf is born sick, he may take her home, warm her in front of the kitchen fire, and massage her legs until dawn. One friend, whose favorite horse was trying to swim a lake with hobbles on, dove under water and cut her legs loose with a knife, then swam her to shore, his arm around her neck lifeguard-style, and saved her from drowning. Because these incidents are usually linked to someone or something outside himself, the westerner's courage is selfless, a form of compassion.
Gretel Ehrlich (The Solace of Open Spaces)
FATHER FORGETS W. Livingston Larned Listen, son: I am saying this as you lie asleep, one little paw crumpled under your cheek and the blond curls stickily wet on your damp forehead. I have stolen into your room alone. Just a few minutes ago, as I sat reading my paper in the library, a stifling wave of remorse swept over me. Guiltily I came to your bedside. There are the things I was thinking, son: I had been cross to you. I scolded you as you were dressing for school because you gave your face merely a dab with a towel. I took you to task for not cleaning your shoes. I called out angrily when you threw some of your things on the floor. At breakfast I found fault, too. You spilled things. You gulped down your food. You put your elbows on the table. You spread butter too thick on your bread. And as you started off to play and I made for my train, you turned and waved a hand and called, “Goodbye, Daddy!” and I frowned, and said in reply, “Hold your shoulders back!” Then it began all over again in the late afternoon. As I came up the road I spied you, down on your knees, playing marbles. There were holes in your stockings. I humiliated you before your boyfriends by marching you ahead of me to the house. Stockings were expensive—and if you had to buy them you would be more careful! Imagine that, son, from a father! Do you remember, later, when I was reading in the library, how you came in timidly, with a sort of hurt look in your eyes? When I glanced up over my paper, impatient at the interruption, you hesitated at the door. “What is it you want?” I snapped. You said nothing, but ran across in one tempestuous plunge, and threw your arms around my neck and kissed me, and your small arms tightened with an affection that God had set blooming in your heart and which even neglect could not wither. And then you were gone, pattering up the stairs. Well, son, it was shortly afterwards that my paper slipped from my hands and a terrible sickening fear came over me. What has habit been doing to me? The habit of finding fault, of reprimanding—this was my reward to you for being a boy. It was not that I did not love you; it was that I expected too much of youth. I was measuring you by the yardstick of my own years. And there was so much that was good and fine and true in your character. The little heart of you was as big as the dawn itself over the wide hills. This was shown by your spontaneous impulse to rush in and kiss me good night. Nothing else matters tonight, son. I have come to your bedside in the darkness, and I have knelt there, ashamed! It is a feeble atonement; I know you would not understand these things if I told them to you during your waking hours. But tomorrow I will be a real daddy! I will chum with you, and suffer when you suffer, and laugh when you laugh. I will bite my tongue when impatient words come. I will keep saying as if it were a ritual: “He is nothing but a boy—a little boy!” I am afraid I have visualized you as a man. Yet as I see you now, son, crumpled and weary in your cot, I see that you are still a baby. Yesterday you were in your mother’s arms, your head on her shoulder. I have asked too much, too much.
Dale Carnegie (How To Win Friends and Influence People)
When I heard about the ease with which the Four had been removed, I felt a wave of sadness. How could such a small group of second-rate tyrants ravage 900 million people for so long? But my main feeling was joy. The last tyrants of the Cultural Revolution were finally gone. My rapture was widely shared. Like many of my countrymen, I went out to buy the best liquors for a celebration with my family and friends, only to find the shops out of stock there was so much spontaneous rejoicing. There were official celebrations as well exactly the same kinds of rallies as during the Cultural Revolution, which infuriated me. I was particularly angered by the fact that in my department, the political supervisors and the student officials were now arranging the whole show, with unperturbed self-righteousness. The new leadership was headed by Mao's chosen successor, Hua Guofeng, whose only qualification, I believed, was his mediocrity. One of his first acts was to announce the construction of a huge mausoleum for Mao on Tiananmen Square. I was outraged: hundreds of thousands of people were still homeless after the earthquake in Tangshan, living in temporary shacks on the pavements. With her experience, my mother had immediately seen that a new era was beginning. On the day after Mao's death she had reported for work at her depas'uuent. She had been at home for five years, and now she wanted to put her energy to use again. She was given a job as the number seven deputy director in her department, of which she had been the director before the Cultural Revolution. But she did not mind. To me in my impatient mood, things seemed to go on as before. In January 1977, my university course came to an end. We were given neither examinations nor degrees. Although Mao and the Gang of Four were gone, Mao's rule that we had to return to where we had come from still applied. For me, this meant the machinery factory. The idea that a university education should make a difference to one's job had been condemned by Mao as 'training spiritual aristocrats.
Jung Chang (Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China)
First of all, it's friendship with God that makes possible friendship with one another in a manner that is not that we just like one another, but that were are joined by common judgments, by God, for the good of God's church. Such friendship occurs not by trying to be each other's friend, but by discovering you were engaged in common good work that is so determinative, you cannot live without one another. Now, if the church is that, it will talk about friendship in a way that avoids the superficiality of the language of relationship. Because relationships are meant to be spontaneous and short. Friendship, if it is the friendship of God, is to be characterized by fidelity in which you are even willing to tell the friend the truth. Which may mean you will risk the friendship. You need to be in that kind of community to survive the loneliness that threatens all of our souls.
Stanley Hauerwas
For reasons we don't yet understand, the tendency to synchronize is one of the most pervasive drives in the universe, extending from atoms to animals, from people to planets. Female friends or coworkers who spend a great deal of time together often find that their menstrual periods tend to start around the same day. Sperm swimming side by side en route to the egg beat their tails in unison, in a primordial display of synchronized swimming. Sometimes sync can be pernicious: Epilepsy is caused by millions of brain cells discharging in pathological lockstep, causing the rhythmic convulsions associated with seizures. Even lifeless things can synchronize. The astounding coherence of a laser beam comes from trillions of atoms pulsing in concert, all emitting photons of the same phase and frequency. Over the course of millennia, the incessant effects of the tides have locked the moon's spin to its orbit. It now turns on its axis at precisely the same rate as it circles the earth, which is why we always see the man in the moon and never its dark side.
Steven H. Strogatz (Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous Order)
For the psychologist Paul Bloom, this is a huge downside. Empathy, he argues, focuses our attention on single individuals, leading us to become both parochial and insensitive to scale.62 As Bertrand Russell is often reported to have said, “The mark of a civilized man is the capacity to read a column of numbers and weep,”63 but few of us are capable of truly feeling statistics in this way. If only we could be moved more by our heads than our hearts, we could do a lot more good. And yet the incentives to show empathy and spontaneous compassion are overwhelming. Think about it: Which kind of people are likely to make better friends, coworkers, and spouses—“calculators” who manage their generosity with a spreadsheet, or “emoters” who simply can’t help being moved to help people right in front of them? Sensing that emoters, rather than calculators, are generally preferred as allies, our brains are keen to advertise that we are emoters. Spontaneous generosity may not be the most effective way to improve human welfare on a global scale, but it’s effective where our ancestors needed it to be: at finding mates and building a strong network of allies.
Kevin Simler (The Elephant in the Brain: Hidden Motives in Everyday Life)
Specialisation, accompanied by exchange, is the source of economic prosperity. Here, in my own words, is what a modern version of Smithism claims. First, the spontaneous and voluntary exchange of goods and services leads to a division of labour in which people specialise in what they are good at doing. Second, this in turn leads to gains from trade for each party to a transaction, because everybody is doing what he is most productive at and has the chance to learn, practise and even mechanise his chosen task. Individuals can thus use and improve their own tacit and local knowledge in a way that no expert or ruler could. Third, gains from trade encourage more specialisation, which encourages more trade, in a virtuous circle. The greater the specialisation among producers, the greater is the diversification of consumption: in moving away from self-sufficiency people get to produce fewer things, but to consume more. Fourth, specialisation inevitably incentivises innovation, which is also a collaborative process driven by the exchange and combination of ideas. Indeed, most innovation comes about through the recombination of existing ideas for how to make or organise things. The more people trade and the more they divide labour, the more they are working for each other. The more they work for each other, the higher their living standards. The consequence of the division of labour is an immense web of cooperation among strangers: it turns potential enemies into honorary friends. A woollen coat, worn by a day labourer, was (said Smith) ‘the produce of a great multitude of workmen. The shepherd, the sorter of the wool, the wool-comber or carder, the dyer, the scribbler, the spinner, the weaver, the fuller, the dresser . . .’ In parting with money to buy a coat, the labourer was not reducing his wealth. Gains from trade are mutual; if they were not, people would not voluntarily engage in trade. The more open and free the market, the less opportunity there is for exploitation and predation, because the easier it is for consumers to boycott the predators and for competitors to whittle away their excess profits. In its ideal form, therefore, the free market is a device for creating networks of collaboration among people to raise each other’s living standards, a device for coordinating production and a device for communicating information about needs through the price mechanism. Also a device for encouraging innovation. It is the very opposite of the rampant and selfish individualism that so many churchmen and others seem to think it is. The market is a system of mass cooperation. You compete with rival producers, sure, but you cooperate with your customers, your suppliers and your colleagues. Commerce both needs and breeds trust.
Matt Ridley (The Evolution of Everything: How New Ideas Emerge)
I soon saw, however, that Creed's obsession with death was typical of most of the children. This came out in their play. "Let's play funeral" was a favorite game at recess. To me, it seemed bizarre and mawkish play. All that saved it was the spontaneous creativity of the children and the fact that, unerringly, they caught the incongruities and absurdities of their elders. One child would be elected to be "dead" and would lay himself out on the ground, eyes closed, hands dutifully crossed across his chest. Another would be chosen to be the "preacher," all the rest, "mourners." I remember one day when Sam Houston Holcomb was the "corpse" and Creed Allen, always the class clown of the group, was elected "preacher." Creed, already at ten an accomplished mimic, was turning in an outstanding performance. I stood watching, half-hidden in the shado of the doorway. Creed (bellowing in stentorian tones): "You-all had better stop your meanness and I'll tell you for why. Praise the Lord! If you'uns don't stop being so defend ornery, you ain't never goin' gift to see Brother Holcomb on them streets paved with rubies and such-like, to give him the time of day, 'cause you'uns are goin' to be laid out on the coolin' board and then roasted in hellfire." The "congregation" shivered with delight, as if they were hearing a deliciously scary ghost story. The corpse opened one eye to see how his mourners were taking this blast; he sighed contentedly at their palpitations; wriggled right leg where a fly was tickling; adjusted grubby hands more comfortably across chest. Creed then grasped his right ear with his right hand and spat. Only there wasn't enough to make the stream impressive. So preacher paused, working his mouth vigorously, trying to collect more spit. Another pucker and heave. Ah! Better! Sermon now resumed: "Friends and neighbors, we air lookin' on Brother Holcombe's face for the last time." (Impressive pause.). "Praise the Lord! We ain't never goin' see him again in this life." (Impressive pause.). "Praise the Lord!" Small preacher was now really getting warmed up. He remembered something he must have heard at the last real funeral. Hearty spit first, more pulling of ear: "You air enjoyin' life now, folks. Me, I used to git pleasured and enjoy life too. But now that I've got religion, I don't enjoy life no more." At this point I retreated behind the door lest I betray my presence by laughing aloud.
Catherine Marshall (Christy)
I had a powerful personal experience of this truth. A few weeks before the end of my Peace Corps time in Thailand, I was sitting quietly in a friend’s garden listening to him read from a Tibetan text called, in that early translation, The Tibetan Book of the Great Liberation. My mind had become quite concentrated and at one point, when the text was speaking of the “unborn nature of the mind,” there was a sudden and spontaneous experience of the mind opening … to zero. This momentary opening to the “unmanifest,” a reality beyond the ordinary mind and body, had the force of a lightning bolt shattering the solidified illusion of self. Immediately following this, a phrase kept repeating in my mind, “There’s no me, there’s no me.” This experience radically changed my understanding of things. Of course, since then, feelings or thoughts of “me,” of a sense of self, have arisen many times, but, still, the deep knowing remains that even the sense of self is selfless—that it’s just another thought.
Joseph Goldstein (One Dharma: The Emerging Western Buddhism)
In addition to work, ADHD can significantly impact family life and relationships. The effects of ADHD on relationships are not necessarily negative; in fact, they can bring out many positive attributes. Loved ones may feel energized around you and recognize that your sense of spontaneity and creative expression brings a lot of joy into their lives. On the flip side, friends and family may complain about imbalanced relationships, issues with intimacy, and/or fraught dynamics. If you get easily sidetracked, you may be late to dates with friends and family (or completely forget to meet). You may forget to respond to emails, calls, and test. Family and friends may take these behaviors personally. This can feel hurtful to you when you are trying your best with a brain that works differently than theirs. Of course, this does not have anything to do with how much you care for your loved ones, so communicating what you're going through and strengthening your organizational skills to respect important commitments can keep your treasured relationships humming along smoothly.
Christy Duan MD (Managing ADHD Workbook for Women: Exercises and Strategies to Improve Focus, Motivation, and Confidence)
When the two people who thus discover that they are on the same secret road are of different sexes, the friendship which arises between them will very easily pass—may pass in the first half-hour—into erotic love. Indeed, unless they are physically repulsive to each other or unless one or both already loves elsewhere, it is almost certain to do so sooner or later. And conversely, erotic love may lead to Friendship between the lovers. But this, so far from obliterating the distinction between the two loves, puts it in a clearer light. If one who was first, in the deep and full sense, your Friend, is then gradually or suddenly revealed as also your lover you will certainly not want to share the Beloved’s erotic love with any third. But you will have no jealousy at all about sharing the Friendship. Nothing so enriches an erotic love as the discovery that the Beloved can deeply, truly, and spontaneously enter into Friendship with the Friends you already had: to feel that not only are we two united by erotic love but we three or four or five are all travellers on the same quest, have all a common vision.
C.S. Lewis (The Four Loves)
The pain of love sometimes stops for a moment, but only to return in a different form. We weep to see the one we love no longer drawn to us by rushes of spontaneous feeling, no longer taking the initiative in loving as she did in the early days; we suffer even more to think that, having lost them for us, she perhaps now has these feelings for others; then we are distracted from that pain by a new, more desperate one, the suspicion that she lied to us about where she was the previous evening, when no doubt she was deceiving us; that suspicion also fades, our friend’s sweetness to us pacifies us; but then a forgotten remark comes back into our mind, someone once told us that she was passionate in her love-making, whereas we have only ever seen her calm; we try to imagine what her frenzy with others could have been like, we realize how little we mean to her, we find a hint of boredom, of nostalgia, of sadness in her manner when we are speaking to her, we notice with foreboding the simple dresses she wears when with us, keeping for others the splendid ones with which, at the beginning, she tried to dazzle us.
Marcel Proust (The Prisoner: In Search of Lost Time, Volume 5 (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition))
Ah, my friends, that innocent afternoon with Larry provoked me into thought in a way my own dicelife until then never had. Larry took to following the dice with such ease and joy compared to the soul-searching gloom that I often went through before following a decision, that I had to wonder what happened to every human in the two decades between seven and twenty-seven to turn a kitten into a cow. Why did children seem to be so often spontaneous, joy-filled and concentrated while adults seemed controlled, anxiety-filled and diffused? It was the Goddam sense of having a self: that sense of self which psychologists have been proclaiming we all must have. What if - at the time it seemed like an original thought - what if the development of a sense of self is normal and natural, but is neither inevitable nor desirable? What if it represents a psychological appendix: a useless, anachronistic pain in the side? - or, like the mastodon's huge tusks: a heavy, useless and ultimately self-destructive burden? What if the sense of being some-one represents an evolutionary error as disastrous to the further development of a more complex creature as was the shell for snails or turtles? He he he. What if? indeed: men must attempt to eliminate the error and develop in themselves and their children liberation from the sense of self. Man must become comfortable in flowing from one role to another, one set of values to another, one life to another. Men must be free from boundaries, patterns and consistencies in order to be free to think, feel and create in new ways. Men have admired Prometheus and Mars too long; our God must become Proteus. I became tremendously excited with my thoughts: 'Men must become comfortable in flowing from one role to another' - why aren't they? At the age of three or four, children were willing to be either good guys or bad guys, the Americans or the Commies, the students or the fuzz. As the culture molds them, however, each child comes to insist on playing only one set of roles: he must always be a good guy, or, for equally compulsive reasons, a bad guy or rebel. The capacity to play and feel both sets of roles is lost. He has begun to know who he is supposed to be. The sense of permanent self: ah, how psychologists and parents lust to lock their kids into some definable cage. Consistency, patterns, something we can label - that's what we want in our boy. 'Oh, our Johnny always does a beautiful bower movement every morning after breakfast.' 'Billy just loves to read all the time...' 'Isn't Joan sweet? She always likes to let the other person win.' 'Sylvia's so pretty and so grown up; she just loves all the time to dress up.' It seemed to me that a thousand oversimplifications a year betrayed the truths in the child's heart: he knew at one point that he didn't always feel like shitting after breakfast but it gave his Ma a thrill. Billy ached to be out splashing in mud puddles with the other boys, but... Joan wanted to chew the penis off her brother every time he won, but ... And Sylvia daydreamed of a land in which she wouldn’t have to worry about how she looked . . . Patterns are prostitution to the patter of parents. Adults rule and they reward patterns. Patterns it is. And eventual misery. What if we were to bring up our children differently? Reward them for varying their habits, tastes, roles? Reward them for being inconsistent? What then? We could discipline them to be reliably various, to be conscientiously inconsistent, determinedly habit-free - even of 'good' habits.
Luke Rhinehart (The Dice Man)
careful! Imagine that, son, from a father! Do you remember, later, when I was reading in the library, how you came in timidly, with a sort of hurt look in your eyes? When I glanced up over my paper, impatient at the interruption, you hesitated at the door. “What is it you want?” I snapped. You said nothing, but ran across in one tempestuous plunge, and threw your arms around my neck and kissed me, and your small arms tightened with an affection that God had set blooming in your heart and which even neglect could not wither. And then you were gone, pattering up the stairs. Well, son, it was shortly afterwards that my paper slipped from my hands and a terrible sickening fear came over me. What has habit been doing to me? The habit of finding fault, of reprimanding—this was my reward to you for being a boy. It was not that I did not love you; it was that I expected too much of youth. I was measuring you by the yardstick of my own years. And there was so much that was good and fine and true in your character. The little heart of you was as big as the dawn itself over the wide hills. This was shown by your spontaneous impulse to rush in and kiss me good night. Nothing else matters
Dale Carnegie (How To Win Friends and Influence People)
He insisted on clearing the table, and again devoted himself to his game of patience: piecing together the map of Paris, the bits of which he’d stuffed into the pocket of his raincoat, folded up any old how. I helped him. Then he asked me, straight out, ‘What would you say was the true centre of Paris?’ I was taken aback, wrong-footed. I thought this knowledge was part of a whole body of very rarefied and secret lore. Playing for time, I said, ‘The starting point of France’s roads . . . the brass plate on the parvis of Notre-Dame.’ He gave me a withering look. ‘Do you take for me a sap?’ The centre of Paris, a spiral with four centres, each completely self-contained, independent of the other three. But you don’t reveal this to just anybody. I suppose - I hope - it was in complete good faith that Alexandre Arnoux mentioned the lamp behind the apse of St-Germain-l’Auxerrois. I wouldn’t have created that precedent. My turn now to let the children play with the lock. ‘The centre, as you must be thinking of it, is the well of St-Julien-le-Pauvre. The “Well of Truth” as it’s been known since the eleventh century.’ He was delighted. I’d delivered. He said, ‘You know, you and I could do great things together. It’s a pity I’m already “beyond redemption”, even at this very moment.’ His unhibited display of brotherly affection was of childlike spontaneity. But he was still pursuing his line of thought: he dashed out to the nearby stationery shop and came back with a little basic pair of compasses made of tin. ‘Look. The Vieux-Chene, the Well. The Well, the Arbre-a-Liege On either side of the Seine, adhering closely to the line he’d drawn, the age-old tavern signs were at pretty much the same distance from the magic well. ‘Well, now, you see, it’s always been the case that whenever something bad happens at the Vieux-Chene, a month later — a lunar month, that is, just twenty-eight days — the same thing happens at old La Frite’s place, but less serious. A kind of repeat performance. An echo Then he listed, and pointed out on the map, the most notable of those key sites whose power he or his friends had experienced. In conclusion he said, ‘I’m the biggest swindler there is, I’m prepared to be swindled myself, that’s fair enough. But not just anywhere. There are places where, if you lie, or think ill, it’s Paris you disrespect. And that upsets me. That’s when I lose my cool: I hit back. It’s as if that’s what I was there for.
Jacques Yonnet (Paris Noir: The Secret History of a City)
Nonconformity is an affront to those in the mainstream. Our impulse is to dismiss this lifestyle, create reasons why it can’t work, why it doesn’t even warrant consideration. Why not? Living outdoors is cheap and can be afforded by a half year of marginal employment. They can’t buy things that most of us have, but what they lose in possessions, they gain in freedom. In Somerset Maugham’s The Razor’s Edge, lead character Larry returns from the First World War and declares that he would like to “loaf.”23 The term “loafing” inadequately describes the life he would spend traveling, studying, searching for meaning, and even laboring. Larry meets with the disapproval of peers and would-be mentors: “Common sense assured…that if you wanted to get on in this world, you must accept its conventions, and not to do what everybody else did clearly pointed to instability.” Larry had an inheritance that enabled him to live modestly and pursue his dreams. Larry’s acquaintances didn’t fear the consequences of his failure; they feared his failure to conform. I’m no maverick. Upon leaving college I dove into the workforce, eager to have my own stuff and a job to pay for it. Parents approved, bosses gave raises, and my friends could relate. The approval, the comforts, the commitments wound themselves around me like invisible threads. When my life stayed the course, I wouldn’t even feel them binding. Then I would waiver enough to sense the growing entrapment, the taming of my life in which I had been complicit. Working a nine-to-five job took more energy than I had expected, leaving less time to pursue diverse interests. I grew to detest the statement “I am a…” with the sentence completed by an occupational title. Self-help books emphasize “defining priorities” and “staying focused,” euphemisms for specialization and stifling spontaneity. Our vision becomes so narrow that risk is trying a new brand of cereal, and adventure is watching a new sitcom. Over time I have elevated my opinion of nonconformity nearly to the level of an obligation. We should have a bias toward doing activities that we don’t normally do to keep loose the moorings of society. Hiking the AT is “pointless.” What life is not “pointless”? Is it not pointless to work paycheck to paycheck just to conform? Hiking the AT before joining the workforce was an opportunity not taken. Doing it in retirement would be sensible; doing it at this time in my life is abnormal, and therein lay the appeal. I want to make my life less ordinary.
David Miller (AWOL on the Appalachian Trail)
The studio was immense and gloomy, the sole light within it proceeding from a stove, around which the three were seated. Although they were bold, and of the age when men are most jovial, the conversation had taken, in spite of their efforts to the contrary, a reflection from the dull weather without, and their jokes and frivolity were soon exhausted. In addition to the light which issued from the crannies in the stove, there was another emitted from a bowl of spirits, which was ceaselessly stirred by one of the young men, as he poured from an antique silver ladle some of the flaming spirit into the quaint old glasses from which the students drank. The blue flame of the spirit lighted up in a wild and fantastic manner the surrounding objects in the room, so that the heads of old prophets, of satyrs, or Madonnas, clothed in the same ghastly hue, seemed to move and to dance along the walls like a fantastic procession of the dead; and the vast room, which in the day time sparkled with the creations of genius, seemed now, in its alternate darkness and sulphuric light, to be peopled with its dreams. Each time also that the silver spoon agitated the liquid, strange shadows traced themselves along the walls, hideous and of fantastic form. Unearthly tints spread also upon the hangings of the studio, from the old bearded prophet of Michael Angelo to those eccentric caricatures which the artist had scrawled upon his walls, and which resembled an army of demons that one sees in a dream, or such as Goya has painted; whilst the lull and rise of the tempest without but added to the fantastic and nervous feeling which pervaded those within. Besides this, to add to the terror which was creeping over the three occupants of the room, each time that they looked at each other they appeared with faces of a blue tone, with eyes fixed and glittering like live embers, and with pale lips and sunken cheeks; but the most fearful object of all was that of a plaster mask taken from the face of an intimate friend but lately dead, which, hanging near the window, let the light from the spirit fall upon its face, turned three parts towards them, which gave it a strange, vivid, and mocking expression. All people have felt the influence of large and dark rooms, such as Hoffmann has portrayed and Rembrandt has painted; and all the world has experienced those wild and unaccountable terrors - panics without a cause - which seize on one like a spontaneous fever, at the sight of objects to which a stray glimpse of the moon or a feeble ray from a lamp gives a mysterious form; nay, all, we should imagine, have at some period of their lives found themselves by the side of a friend, in a dark and dismal chamber, listening to some wild story, which so enchains them, that although the mere lighting of a candle could put an end to their terror, they would not do so; so much need has the human heart of emotions, whether they be true or false. So it was upon the evening mentioned. The conversation of the three companions never took a direct line, but followed all the phases of their thoughts; sometimes it was light as the smoke which curled from their cigars, then for a moment fantastic as the flame of the burning spirit, and then again dark, lurid, and sombre as the smile which lit up the mask from their dead friend's face. At last the conversation ceased altogether, and the respiration of the smokers was the only sound heard; and their cigars glowed in the dark, like Will-of-the-wisps brooding o'er a stagnant pool. It was evident to them all, that the first who should break the silence, even if he spoke in jest, would cause in the hearts of the others a start and tremor, for each felt that he had almost unwittingly plunged into a ghastly reverie. ("The Dead Man's Story")
James Hain Friswell
We kept our fingers crossed and eagerly scanned the newspapers and magazines for news of an engagement between Diana and Charles. Then, late in the morning of February 24, I answered the telephone in my bedroom and heard the voice of a friend in London… “Mary, it’s Dena. Your girl made it!” I knew she meant that Diana’s engagement to Prince Charles had just been announced. I gave a big shout and literally jumped for joy, banging my head on the low dormer ceiling. I couldn’t have been prouder of Diana if I’d been her mother. I was so happy for her I could have burst! I knew how desperately she had wished for this outcome. The past fall, she had told me that she would “simply die” if the romance didn’t work out. How wonderful that her dream had come true. Almost immediately, a mischievous picture popped into my mind of the future and royal Diana, scheduled for an official day of handshaking, ribbon cutting, or tree planting and wishing she could have a friend call to cancel those tedious engagements. As Princess of Wales, she would not be able to cancel on short notice, if at all, as she had when she was baby-sitting for me. I wondered how the lively, spontaneous, and very young Diana would adjust to her official duties. I felt a bit sorry for her as I dimly realized how rigid and structured her new life might be.
Mary Robertson (The Diana I Knew: Loving Memories of the Friendship Between an American Mother and Her Son's Nanny Who Became the Princess of Wales)
You’re called to come out of the crowd. You’re called to be counter-culture. You’re not called to live in this world, be of this world-you’re called to come out. News flash-the crowd is stupid. The crowd has no identity at all. We just do what everyone else is doing. “ “When you decide, you divide the enemy and his tactics, and his distractions towards your life. The moment you actually conqueror the urge, you get stronger and the urges get weaker. But it will never happen, until you determine “I am not like the crowd, I’m coming out of the crowd. I’m apart of the minority. Ruth is determined to choose right over easy. You want to know what the right thing is? The right thing is God’s word, and it’s not just about knowing it, it’s about applying it to your life!” “Choose right over easy.” “See, when you come out of the crowd, and when you say, and when you say with the crowd, it’s all crowded here, and when you say I’m going to be apart of the minority, but let my commitments stand. Hey Naomi, you don’t know me, I made a commitment, and my commitment matters. You can tell me I’m relieved of my responsibility, but my vow is my vow. And I’m not going to be swayed, just because the circumstances have changed.” “Stay on the path, because you don’t know what lies ahead of you. Because you’re not God. All He asks you and I is to put one foot in front of another. To keep on moving. Keep on going. Commit to God’s way, and watch God make a way, when there seems to be no way. “ “Being single is awesome! When you’re single, everything in your house, you own all of it. All the money in your bank account, belongs to you.” :) “I think one of the hardest things, that people don’t talk about is that you get to decorate your house exactly how you want to do it.” “The older I get, the more I realize that people are borderline obsessed with what’s next…but if you’re not careful you’ll get so obsessed with what’s next, you won’t care about what is now. It doesn’t take a lot of use to realize, that if you’re graduating from high school, everyone’s going-“where you going to college?” If you’re in college, everyone’s like “where are you going to work?” You work for a little while as a single person, and it’s like “when are you going to get married.” You get married, and everyone’s like, “when are you going to have kids?” You have a kid, and everyone’s like, “when are you going to have more kids.” “Singleness is not a stop sign. It’s not a period, it’s not a comma. Your life doesn’t begin when you get married. A boy-friend or a girl-friend doesn’t make your life start happening. Life is happening. The question is, “are you happening?” You don’t have to live boring or be bored to be single. A life filled with Jesus is full of adventure. It’s filled with spontaneity, it’s full of ups and downs. And it’s time for you to get on mission. Let me just be loud and clear and frank with it-Jesus is a better partner than any spouse could ever dream of being.” “The truth is, sometimes sitting on the path can be just as detrimental as getting off the path. You’re called to move forward, you’re called to grow, you’re called to become.” “Be the minority, because the majority is overrated.” -Rich Wilkerson Jr., Single and Secure
Rich Wilkerson Jr.
And, so, what was it that elevated Rubi from dictator's son-in-law to movie star's husband to the sort of man who might capture the hand of the world's wealthiest heiress? Well, there was his native charm. People who knew him, even if only casually, even if they were predisposed to be suspicious or resentful of him, came away liking him. He picked up checks; he had courtly manners; he kept the party gay and lively; he was attentive to women but made men feel at ease; he was smoothly quick to rise from his chair when introduced, to open doors, to light a lady's cigarette ("I have the fastest cigarette lighter in the house," he once boasted): the quintessential chivalrous gent of manners. The encomia, if bland, were universal. "He's a very nice guy," swore gossip columnist Earl Wilson, who stayed with Rubi in Paris. ""I'm fond of him," said John Perona, owner of New York's El Morocco. "Rubi's got a nice personality and is completely masculine," attested a New York clubgoer. "He has a lot of men friends, which, I suppose, is unusual. Aly Khan, for instance, has few male friends. But everyone I know thinks Rubi is a good guy." "He is one of the nicest guys I know," declared that famed chum of famed playboys Peter Lawford. "A really charming man- witty, fun to be with, and a he-man." There were a few tricks to his trade. A society photographer judged him with a professional eye thus: "He can meet you for a minute and a month later remember you very well." An author who played polo with him put it this way: "He had a trick that never failed. When he spoke with someone, whether man or woman, it seemed as if the rest of the world had lost all interest for him. He could hang on the words of a woman or man who spoke only banalities as if the very future of the world- and his future, especially- depended on those words." But there was something deeper to his charm, something irresistible in particular when he turned it on women. It didn't reveal itself in photos, and not every woman was susceptible to it, but it was palpable and, when it worked, unforgettable. Hollywood dirt doyenne Hedda Hoppe declared, "A friend says he has the most perfect manners she has ever encountered. He wraps his charm around your shoulders like a Russian sable coat." Gossip columnist Shelia Graham was chary when invited to bring her eleven-year-old daughter to a lunch with Rubi in London, and her wariness was transmitted to the girl, who wiped her hand off on her dress after Rubi kissed it in a formal greeting; by the end of lunch, he had won the child over with his enthusiastic, spontaneous manner, full of compliments but never cloying. "All done effortlessly," Graham marveled. "He was probably a charming baby, I am sure that women rushed to coo over him in the cradle." Elsa Maxwell, yet another gossip, but also a society gadabout and hostess who claimed a key role in at least one of Rubi's famous liaisons, put it thus: "You expect Rubi to be a very dangerous young man who personifies the wolf. Instead, you meet someone who is so unbelievably charming and thoughtful that you are put off-guard before you know it." But charm would only take a man so far. Rubi was becoming and international legend not because he could fascinate a young girl but because he could intoxicate sophisticated women. p124
Shawn Levy (The Last Playboy : the High Life of Porfirio Rubirosa)
Listen, son: I am saying this as you lie asleep, one little paw crumpled under your cheek and the blond curls stickily wet on your damp forehead. I have stolen into your room alone. Just a few minutes ago, as I sat reading my paper in the library, a stifling wave of remorse swept over me. Guiltily I came to your bedside. There are the things I was thinking, son: I had been cross to you. I scolded you as you were dressing for school because you gave your face merely a dab with a towel. I took you to task for not cleaning your shoes. I called out angrily when you threw some of your things on the floor. At breakfast I found fault, too. You spilled things. You gulped down your food. You put your elbows on the table. You spread butter too thick on your bread. And as you started off to play and I made for my train, you turned and waved a hand and called, ‘Goodbye, Daddy!’ and I frowned, and said in reply, ‘Hold your shoulders back!’ Then it began all over again in the late afternoon. As I came up the road I spied you, down on your knees, playing marbles. There were holes in your stockings. I humiliated you before your boyfriends by marching you ahead of me to the house. Stockings were expensive – and if you had to buy them you would be more careful! Imagine that, son, from a father! Do you remember, later, when I was reading in the library, how you came in timidly, with a sort of hurt look in your eyes? When I glanced up over my paper, impatient at the interruption, you hesitated at the door. ‘What is it you want?’ I snapped. You said nothing, but ran across in one tempestuous plunge, and threw your arms around my neck and kissed me, and your small arms tightened with an affection that God had set blooming in your heart and which even neglect could not wither. And then you were gone, pattering up the stairs. Well, son, it was shortly afterwards that my paper slipped from my hands and a terrible sickening fear came over me. What has habit been doing to me? The habit of finding fault, of reprimanding – this was my reward to you for being a boy. It was not that I did not love you; it was that I expected too much of youth. I was measuring you by the yardstick of my own years. And there was so much that was good and fine and true in your character. The little heart of you was as big as the dawn itself over the wide hills. This was shown by your spontaneous impulse to rush in and kiss me good night. Nothing else matters tonight, son. I have come to your bedside in the darkness, and I have knelt there, ashamed! It is a feeble atonement; I know you would not understand these things if I told them to you during your waking hours. But tomorrow I will be a real daddy! I will chum with you, and suffer when you suffer, and laugh when you laugh. I will bite my tongue when impatient words come. I will keep saying as if it were a ritual: ‘He is nothing but a boy – a little boy!’ I am afraid I have visualized you as a man. Yet as I see you now, son, crumpled and weary in your cot, I see that you are still a baby. Yesterday you were in your mother’s arms, your head on her shoulder. I have asked too much, too much. Instead of condemning people, let’s try to understand them. Let’s try to figure out why they do what they do. That’s a lot more profitable and intriguing than criticism; and it breeds sympathy, tolerance and kindness. ‘To know all is to forgive all.
Dale Carnegie (How to Win Friends and Influence People)
Sometimes, though, friendship is like love. You can’t plan for it. It finds you in unlikely places. Or in the most obvious place imaginable. One evening, I get back from a run and am doubled over, recovering and panting in front of my building. The entrance opens and a woman pops out, taking out her rubbish. ‘I’m not loitering,’ I tell her when she gives me a funny look. ‘Oh, I didn’t think you were loitering,’ she says. ‘I thought you lived here.’ ‘Oh. I do. I do live here. On the third floor.’ We introduce ourselves. Her name is Hannah and she’s from the Netherlands. As she turns to go back inside, I say, ‘Hey! Do you want to swap numbers? Just in case … there’s a fire or something?’ I can tell my year is already changing me. Talking to strangers has made me less shy and even though I still had to make it a bit weird with the whole fire thing. A few weeks later, Hannah and her husband have Sam and me over for dinner in their flat because we stored a package for them when they were on holiday. Hannah has hundreds of books and I leave her flat with an armful to borrow. A few months later Hannah texts out of the blue, saying, ‘Want to grab a coffee with me right now?’ And I do. The elusive perfect friend-date: spontaneous, with good coffee, great conversation and no commute. We’d also had the spark, both having read several of the same books, both of us the same age, both of us struggling with similar things. She’d been living downstairs the entire time. But if I hadn’t gone through so many friend-dates and false starts, I know I would have asked for her number when we met. In fact, given how I normally treated my neighbours in London and how insular I was before all this began, I probably would have just pretended to be loitering.
Jessica Pan (Sorry I'm Late, I Didn't Want to Come: An Introvert's Year of Living Dangerously)
could remember things that she had said. But my attention, concentrated upon the inward region in which these memories of her lingered, was unable to discover her name there. It was there, nevertheless. My thoughts began playing a sort of game with it to grasp its outlines, its initial letter, and so finally to bring the whole name to light. It was labour in vain, I could more or less estimate its mass, its weight, but as for its forms, confronting them with the shadowy captive lurking in the inward night, I said to myself: “It is not that.” Certainly my mind would have been capable of creating the most difficult names. Unfortunately, it had not to create but to reproduce. All action by the mind is easy, if it is not subjected to the test of reality. Here, I was forced to own myself beaten. Finally, in a flash, the name came back to me as a whole: ‘Madame d’Arpajon.’ I am wrong in saying that it came, for it did not, I think, appear to me by a spontaneous propulsion. I do not think either that the many slight memories which associated me with the lady, and to which I did not cease to appeal for help (by such exhortations as: “Come now, it is the lady who is a friend of Mme. de Souvré, who feels for Victor Hugo so artless an admiration, mingled with so much alarm and horror,”)—I do not believe that all these memories, hovering between me and her name, served in any way to bring it to light. In that great game of hide and seek which is played in our memory when we seek to recapture a name, there is not any series of gradual approximations. We see nothing, then suddenly the name appears in its exact form and very different from what we thought we could make out. It is not the name that has come to us. No, I believe rather that, as we go on living, we pass our time in keeping away from the zone in which a name is distinct, and it was by an exercise of my will and attention which increased the acuteness of my inward vision that all of a sudden I had pierced the semi-darkness and seen daylight.
Marcel Proust (In Search Of Lost Time (All 7 Volumes) (ShandonPress))
Melanie had the face of a sheltered child who had never known anything but simplicity and kindness, truth and love, a child who had never looked upon harshness or evil and would not recognize them if she saw them. Because she had always been happy, she wanted everyone about her to be happy or, at least, pleased with themselves. To this end, she always saw the best in everyone and remarked kindly upon it. There was no servant so stupid that she did not find some redeeming trait of loyalty and kind heartedness, no girl so ugly and disagreeable that she could not discover grace of form or nobility of character in her, and no man so worthless or so boring that she did not view him in the light of his possibilities rather than his actualities. Because of these qualities that came sincerely and spontaneously from a generous heart, everyone flocked about her, for who can resist the charm of one who discovers in others admirable qualities undreamed of even by himself? She had more girl friends than anyone in town and more men friends too, though she had few beaux for she lacked the willfulness and selfishness that go far toward trapping men's hearts. What Melanie did was no more than all Southern girls were taught to do-to make those about them feel at ease and pleased with themselves. It was this happy feminine conspiracy which made Southern society so pleasant. Women knew that a land where men were contented, uncontradicted and safe in possession of unpunctured vanity was likely to be a very pleasant place for women to live. So, from the cradle to the grave, women strove to make men pleased with themselves, and the satisfied men repaid lavishly with gallantry and adoration. In fact, men willingly gave the ladies everything in the world except credit for having intelligence. Scarlett exercised the same charms as Melanie but with a studied artistry and consummate skill. The difference between the two girls lay in the fact that Melanie spoke kind and flattering words from a desire to make people happy, if only temporarily, and Scarlett never did it except to further her own aims.
Margaret Mitchell (Gone with the Wind)
When I had the third breakdown, the mini-breakdown, I was in the late stages of writing this book. Since I could not cope with communication of any kind during that period, I put an auto-response message on my E-mail that said I was temporarily unreachable, and a similar message on my answering machine. Acquaintances who had suffered depression knew what to make of these outgoing messages. They wasted no time. I had dozens and dozens of calls from people offering whatever they could offer and doing it glowingly. “I will come to stay the minute you call,” wrote Laura Anderson, who also sent a wild profusion of orchids, “and I’ll stay as long as it takes you to get better. If you’d prefer, you are of course always welcome here; if you need to move in for a year, I’ll be here for you. I hope you know that I will always be here for you.” Claudia Weaver wrote with questions: “Is it better for you to have someone check in with you every day or are the messages too much of a burden? If they are a burden, you needn’t answer this one, but whatever you need—just call me, anytime, day or night.” Angel Starkey called often from the pay phone at her hospital to see if I was okay. “I don’t know what you need,” she said, “but I’m worrying about you all the time. Please take care of yourself. Come and see me if you’re feeling really bad, anytime. I’d really like to see you. If you need anything, I’ll try to get it for you. Promise me you won’t hurt yourself.” Frank Rusakoff wrote me a remarkable letter and reminded me about the precious quality of hope. “I long for news that you are well and off on another adventure,” he wrote, and signed the letter, “Your friend, Frank.” I had felt committed in many ways to all these people, but the spontaneous outpouring astounded me. Tina Sonego said she’d call in sick for work if I needed her—or that she’d buy me a ticket and take me to someplace relaxing. “I’m a good cook too,” she told me. Janet Benshoof dropped by the house with daffodils and optimistic lines from favorite poems written in her clear hand and a bag so she could come sleep on my sofa, just so I wouldn’t be alone. It was an astonishing responsiveness.
Andrew Solomon (The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression)
What would be the natural thing? A man goes to college. He works as he wants to work, he plays as he wants to play, he exercises for the fun of the game, he makes friends where he wants to make them, he is held in by no fear of criticism above, for the class ahead of him has nothing to do with his standing in his own class. Everything he does has the one vital quality: it is spontaneous. That is the flame of youth itself. Now, what really exists?" "...I say our colleges to-day are business colleges—Yale more so, perhaps, because it is more sensitively American. Let's take up any side of our life here. Begin with athletics. What has become of the natural, spontaneous joy of contest? Instead you have one of the most perfectly organized business systems for achieving a required result—success. Football is driving, slavish work; there isn't one man in twenty who gets any real pleasure out of it. Professional baseball is not more rigorously disciplined and driven than our 'amateur' teams. Add the crew and the track. Play, the fun of the thing itself, doesn't exist; and why? Because we have made a business out of it all, and the college is scoured for material, just as drummers are sent out to bring in business. "Take another case. A man has a knack at the banjo or guitar, or has a good voice. What is the spontaneous thing? To meet with other kindred spirits in informal gatherings in one another's rooms or at the fence, according to the whim of the moment. Instead what happens? You have our university musical clubs, thoroughly professional organizations. If you are material, you must get out and begin to work for them—coach with a professional coach, make the Apollo clubs, and, working on, some day in junior year reach the varsity organization and go out on a professional tour. Again an organization conceived on business lines. "The same is true with the competition for our papers: the struggle for existence outside in a business world is not one whit more intense than the struggle to win out in the News or Lit competition. We are like a beef trust, with every by-product organized, down to the last possibility. You come to Yale—what is said to you? 'Be natural, be spontaneous, revel in a certain freedom, enjoy a leisure you'll never get again, browse around, give your imagination a chance, see every one, rub wits with every one, get to know yourself.' "Is that what's said? No. What are you told, instead? 'Here are twenty great machines that need new bolts and wheels. Get out and work. Work harder than the next man, who is going to try to outwork you. And, in order to succeed, work at only one thing. You don't count—everything for the college.' Regan says the colleges don't represent the nation; I say they don't even represent the individual.
Owen Johnson (Stover at Yale)
Am I mistaken to think that even back then, in the vivid present, the fullness of life stirred our emotions to an extraordinary extent? Has anywhere since so engrossed you in its ocean of details? The detail, the immensity of the detail, the force of the detail, the weight of the detail—the rich endlessness of detail surrounding you in your young life like the six feet of dirt that’ll be packed on your grave when you’re dead. Perhaps by definition a neighborhood is the place to which a child spontaneously gives undivided attention; that’s the unfiltered way meaning comes to children, just flowing off the surface of things. Nonetheless, fifty years later, I ask you: has the immersion ever again been so complete as it was in those streets, where every block, every backyard, every house, every floor of every house—the walls, ceilings, doors, and windows of every last friend’s family apartment—came to be so absolutely individualized? Were we ever again to be such keen recording instruments of the microscopic surface of things close at hand, of the minutest gradations of social position conveyed by linoleum and oilcloth, by yahrzeit candles and cooking smells, by Ronson table lighters and Venetian blinds? About one another, we knew who had what kind of lunch in the bag in his locker and who ordered what on his hot dog at Syd’s; we knew one another’s every physical attribute—who walked pigeon-toed and who had breasts, who smelled of hair oil and who oversalivated when he spoke; we knew who among us was belligerent and who was friendly, who was smart and who was dumb; we knew whose mother had the accent and whose father had the mustache, whose mother worked and whose father was dead; somehow we even dimly grasped how every family’s different set of circumstances set each family a distinctive difficult human problem. And, of course, there was the mandatory turbulence born of need, appetite, fantasy, longing, and the fear of disgrace. With only adolescent introspection to light the way, each of us, hopelessly pubescent, alone and in secret, attempted to regulate it—and in an era when chastity was still ascendant, a national cause to be embraced by the young like freedom and democracy. It’s astonishing that everything so immediately visible in our lives as classmates we still remember so precisely. The intensity of feeling that we have seeing one another today is also astonishing. But most astonishing is that we are nearing the age that our grandparents were when we first went off to be freshmen at the annex on February 1, 1946. What is astonishing is that we, who had no idea how anything was going to turn out, now know exactly what happened. That the results are in for the class of January 1950—the unanswerable questions answered, the future revealed—is that not astonishing? To have lived—and in this country, and in our time, and as who we were. Astonishing.
Philip Roth (American Pastoral (The American Trilogy, #1))
Parental efforts to gain leverage generally take two forms: bribery or coercion. If a simple direction such as “I'd like you to set the table” doesn't do, we may add an incentive, for example, “If you set the table for me, I'll let you have your favorite dessert.” Or if it isn't enough to remind the child that it is time to do homework, we may threaten to withdraw some privilege. Or we may add a coercive tone to our voice or assume a more authoritarian demeanor. The search for leverage is never-ending: sanctions, rewards, abrogation of privileges; the forbidding of computer time, toys, or allowance; separation from the parent or separation from friends; the limitation or abolition of television time, car privileges, and so on and so on. It is not uncommon to hear someone complain about having run out of ideas for what still might remain to be taken away from the child. As our power to parent decreases, our preoccupation with leverage increases. Euphemisms abound: bribes are called variously rewards, incentives, and positive reinforcement; threats and punishments are rechristened warnings, natural consequences, and negative reinforcements; applying psychological force is often referred to as modifying behavior or teaching a lesson. These euphemisms camouflage attempts to motivate the child by external pressure because his intrinsic motivation is deemed inadequate. Attachment is natural and arises from within; leverage is contrived and imposed from without. In any other realm, we would see the use of leverage as manipulation. In parenting, such means of getting a child to follow our will have become embraced by many as normal and appropriate. All attempts to use leverage to motivate a child involve the use of psychological force, whether we employ “positive” force as in rewards or “negative” force as in punishments. We apply force whenever we trade on a child's likes or when we exploit a child's dislikes and insecurities in order to get her to do our will. We resort to leverage when we have nothing else to work with — no intrinsic motivation to tap, no attachment for us to lean on. Such tactics, if they are ever to be employed, should be a last resort, not our first response and certainly not our modus operandi. Unfortunately, when children become peer-oriented, we as parents are driven to leverage-seeking in desperation. Manipulation, whether in the form of rewards or punishments, may succeed in getting the child to comply temporarily, but we cannot by this method make the desired behavior become part of anyone's intrinsic personality. Whether it is to say thank-you or sorry, to share with another, to create a gift or card, to clean up a room, to be appreciative, to do homework, or to practice piano, the more the behavior has been coerced, the less likely it is to occur voluntarily. And the less the behavior occurs spontaneously, the more inclined parents and teachers are to contrive some leverage. Thus begins a spiraling cycle of force and counterwill that necessitates the use of more and more leverage. The true power base for parenting is eroded.
Gabor Maté (Hold On to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers)
Despite its reputation for individualism and unbridled capitalism, the United States has a history rich in cooperation and communalism. From the colonial era to the present—and among the indigenous population for millennia—local communities have engaged in self-help, democracy, and cooperation. Indeed, the “individualistic” tradition might more accurately be called the “self-help” tradition, where “self” is defined not only in terms of the individual but in terms of the community (be it family, township, religious community, etc.). Americans are traditionally hostile to overarching authorities separate from the community with which they identify, a hostility expressed in the age-old resentment towards both government and big business. The stereotype, based on fact, is that Americans would rather solve problems on their own than rely on political and economic power-structures to do so. The following brief survey of the history substantiates this claim. While my focus is on worker cooperatives, I will not ignore the many and varied experiments in other forms of cooperation and communalism. Certain themes and lessons can be gleaned from the history. The most obvious is that a profound tension has existed, constantly erupting into conflict, between the democratic, anti-authoritarian impulses of ordinary Americans and the tendency of economic and political power-structures to grow extensively and intensively, to concentrate themselves in ever-larger and more centralized units that reach as far down into society as possible. Power inherently tries to control as much as it can: it has an intrinsic tendency toward totalitarianism, ideally letting nothing, even the most trivial social interactions, escape its oversight. Bentham’s Panopticon is the perfect emblem of the logic of power. Other social forces, notably people’s strivings for freedom and democracy, typically keep this totalitarian tendency in check. In fact, the history of cooperation and communalism is a case-study in the profound truth that people are instinctively averse to the modes of cutthroat competition, crass greed, authoritarianism, hierarchy, and dehumanization that characterize modern capitalism. Far from capitalism’s being a straightforward expression of human nature, as apologists proclaim, it is more like the very antithesis of human nature, which is evidently drawn to such things as free self-expression, spontaneous “play,”131 cooperation and friendly competition, compassion, love. The work of Marxist historians like E. P. Thompson shows how people have had to be disciplined, their desires repressed, in order for the capitalist system to seem even remotely natural: centuries of indoctrination, state violence, incarceration of “undesirables,” the bureaucratization of everyday life, have been necessary to partially accustom people to the mechanical rhythms of industrial capitalism and the commodification of the human personality.132 And of course resistance continues constantly, from the early nineteenth century to the present day. “Wage-slavery,” as workers in the nineteenth century called it, is a monstrous assault on human dignity, which is why even today, after so much indoctrination, people still hate being subordinated to a “boss” and rebel against it whenever they can.
Chris Wright (Worker Cooperatives and Revolution: History and Possibilities in the United States)
the male cat’s penis is equipped with 120 to 150 sharp spines, designed to trigger her ovulation (cats, unlike humans, do not ovulate spontaneously, but require this stimulus).
John Bradshaw (Cat Sense: How the New Feline Science Can Make You a Better Friend to Your Pet)
Spontaneous evil has its way, when the soul is fast asleep in the safety of regular moments.
Brian Krogstad (Social Media Holocaust: A Friend Request You Can't Ignore)
want to be someone who really celebrates the gift of the people God has given me to love. Here are a few simple ways to celebrate friends. Hold a special tea for your friends and their mothers. Celebrate with a tea for graduates, Mother's Day, or the first day of spring. Put on a birthday tea with special attention on the "big 0" ones. The anniversary of a special event or even a cup of tea to celebrate the end of a bad week or month are also good reasons to commune together. oday why not do a spontaneous act of kindness? Write a note to someone who would never expect it. Put a rose in your hubby's briefcase. Return a shopping cart for someone. Let someone merge into traffic and give him or her a big wave and smile. A thank you note out of the blue to someone who's said something nice about you will bless his or her day. Give another driver your parking spot. Leave a gift of money for someone anonymously. Call your mom or dad for no special reason. Send a letter to a teacher and thank him or her for all they do. Ask an older person to tell you his or her life story. Hebrews 13:2 reminds us to "entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.
Emilie Barnes (365 Things Every Woman Should Know)
eed a gift box? Cover shoe boxes with wrapping paper. Fill them with stationery, a glue stick, small scissors, paper clips, marking pens, memo pads, and thank you notes. You can even add stamps. Any mom, dad, grandparent, or teacher would love such a gift. y motto is "Always be ready for a party." When party supplies go on sale, I stock up. Colored plates, napkins, streamers, little gifts, even party hats. And here's a tip. When you buy candles to use later, store them in your freezer. It helps them burn longer and cleaner. Keep a roll of cookie dough in your freezer, some scone mix in the pantry, and some of those great instant coffees so you'll be ready at any party opportunity. There's nothing like a spontaneous celebration to warm hearts. When you're ready, a party can happen in just a few minutes. You'll be creating memories you and your family and friends will cherish forever.
Emilie Barnes (365 Things Every Woman Should Know)
Leo kept swatting his own legs, checking for signs that his pants were on fire. He wasn’t steaming anymore, but the incident on the ice bridge had really freaked Jason out. Leo hadn’t seemed to realize that he had smoke coming out his ears and flames dancing through his hair. If Leo started spontaneously combusting every time he got excited, they were going to have a tough time taking him anywhere. Jason imagined trying to get food at a restaurant. I’ll have a cheeseburger and—Ahhh! My friend’s on fire! Get me a bucket!
Anonymous
She prefers to do it in the apartment of a Swiss friend whom she trusts. “Spontaneously she offered me hospitality on neutral ground,” she adds.
Susann Bosshard (Westward: Encounters with Swiss American Women)
Leo kept swatting his own legs, checking for signs that his pants were on fire. He wasn’t steaming anymore, but the incident on the ice bridge had really freaked Jason out. Leo hadn’t seemed to realize that he had smoke coming out his ears and flames dancing through his hair. If Leo started spontaneously combusting every time he got excited, they were going to have a tough time taking him anywhere. Jason imagined trying to get food at a restaurant. I’ll have a cheeseburger and—Ahhh! My friend’s on fire! Get me a bucket!
Rick Riordan (The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus, #1))
Although Diana has successfully shaken off the traditional image of the fairy-tale princess concerned exclusively with shopping and fashion it still colours the preconceptions of those she meets for the first time. She is used to being patronized. As she tells close friends: “It happens a lot. It’s interesting to see people’s reactions to me. They have one impression in mind and then, as they talk to me, I can see it changing.” At the same time her struggles within the royal family have made her realize that she must not hide behind the conventional mask of monarchy. The spontaneity, the tactile compassion and the generosity of spirit she displays in public are very genuine. It is not an act for public consumption. The Princess, who appreciates how the royal world anaesthetizes individuals from reality, is fiercely determined that her boys are prepared for the outside world in a way unknown to previous royal generations. Normally royal children are trained to hide their feelings and emotions from others, constructing a shield to deflect intrusive inquiry. Diana believes that William and Harry should be open and honest to the possibilities within themselves and the variety of approaches to understanding life. As she says: “I want to bring them up with security. I hug my children to death and get into bed with them at night. I always feed them love and affection, it’s so important.
Andrew Morton (Diana: Her True Story in Her Own Words)
It was another watershed event for a woman who had for so long believed herself worthless, with little to offer the world other than her sense of style. Her life in the royal family had been directly responsible for creating this confusion. As her friend James Gilbey says: “When she went to Pakistan last year she was amazed that five million people turned out just to see her. Diana has this extraordinary battle going on in her mind. ‘How can all these people want to see me?’ and then I get home in the evening and lead this mouse-like existence. Nobody says: ‘Well done.’ She has this incredible dichotomy in her mind. She has this adulation out there and this extraordinary vacant life at home. There is nobody and nothing there in the sense that nobody is saying nice things to her--apart of course from the children. She feels she is in an alien world.” Little things mean so much to Diana. She doesn’t seek praise but on public engagements if people thank her for helping, it turns a routine duty into a very special moment. Years ago she never believed the plaudits she received, now she is much more comfortable accepting a kind word and a friendly gesture. If she makes a difference, it makes her day. She has discussed with church leaders, including the Archbishop or Canterbury and several leading bishops, the blossoming of this deep seated need within herself to help those who are sick and dying. “Anywhere I see suffering, that is where I want to be, doing what I can,” she says. Visits to specialist hospitals like Stoke Mandeville or Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children are not a chore but deeply satisfying. As America’s First Lady, Barbara Bush, discovered when she joined the Princess on a visit to an AIDS ward of the Middlesex Hospital in July 1991 there is nothing maudlin about Diana’s attitude towards the sick. When a bed-bound patient burst into tears as the Princess was chatting to him, Diana spontaneously put her arms around him and gave him an enormous hug. It was a touching moment which affected the First Lady and others who were present. While she has since spoken of the need to give AIDS sufferers a cuddle, for Diana this moment was a personal achievement. As she held him to her, she was giving in to her own self rather than conforming to her role as a princess.
Andrew Morton (Diana: Her True Story in Her Own Words)
Once, in an age long passed, there were two friends who went together to study religion at the feet of a master. When it was explained to them both that the essence of innermost reality is truly spontaneous awareness, they each went off separately to practice what they had been taught. One of them relaxed his mind through meditation and yoga and allowed all negative emotions to simply float away like clouds in the sky until his consciousness was clear, open, and bright. The other began to assert his ego through murder and theft. Using his skill and intelligence to organize a criminal network, he quickly set up a chain of brothels and gambling houses so that he became very rich and powerful indeed. When the tow friends met again some time later, each was surprised to see how the other had understood the teachings they had received together. Returning to the teacher for advice about who was right and who was wrong, they were told that the goal of freedom is freedom from the ego. Hearing this, the one who had spent so much time and energy boosting his ego became very angry indeed and killed the master on the spot. Consequently, in subsequent incarnations, the student who was dominated by the evil ego was born repeatedly in the form of various wild animals and fell down into the lowest of the hell-realms.
Stephen Hodge (The Illustrated Tibetan Book of the Dead: A New Reference Manual for the Soul)
I could imagine a hot day. I could imagine a number of curious people spontaneously following a young man of great wisdom, a young man rumored to wield power over the mysterious afflictions they saw every day in their villages. They are not sure where they are going, and once the young man stops to speak, they find themselves on the other side of the Sea of Galilee, the nearest town now very far away. Many are feeling hunger pangs, uncertain of why they have come so far. What will they do? One of the young man's friends arrives, unexpectedly bearing food. The people are happy and relieved, and among them talk circulates of the surprising tenderness with which the wise young man hands out victuals to the people, few of whom he knows well. Eventually, the story is written down. Years go by, then decades, and in this time the crowd increases from fifty to five hundred to five thousand. The unexpected arrival of the follower bearing food vanishes from the telling. An event experienced by its participants in miraculous terms is transformed into a miraculous story. The core of the story remains the same: the hungry were fed when they were not expecting to be, and the young man who fed them do so of his own volition. You could base a code of ethics on a single act of unexpected munificence, and perhaps even fashion from it a crude if supple morality, but you would not have a cosmology, or anything close to one, and cosmologies were what most people craved.
Tom Bissell (Apostle: Travels Among the Tombs of the Twelve)
The ox and the sheep submit to our control, but their affections are principally, if not solely, confined to themselves. They submit to us, but they can rarely be said to love, or even to recognise us, except as connected with the supply of their wants. The horse will share some of our pleasures. He enjoys the chase as much as does his rider; and, when contending for victory on the course, he feels the full influence of emulation. Remembering the pleasure he has experienced with his master, or the daily supply of food from the hand of the groom, he often exhibits evident tokens of recognition; but that is founded on a selfish principle—he neighs that he may be fed, and his affections are easily transferred. The dog is the only animal that is capable of disinterested affection. He is the only one that regards the human being as his companion, and follows him as his friend; the only one that seems to possess a natural desire to be useful to him, or from a spontaneous impulse attaches himself to man.
William Youatt (The Dog)
In light of his criticism, maybe we need to reevaluate Jesus’ commendation — and look more closely at our own church and our own lives. The church at Ephesus was a hardworking church, but without the hot fire of love for Christ, their work was simply a performance. The services were well planned, the pews were packed, and the pastor’s sermons were polished, but Jesus says, “I miss the love you had at first.” He misses the extravagance of love poured out; he misses the spontaneous expressions of praise; he misses the full sacrifice of their hearts. The ministry at the Ephesian church in your neighborhood is very impressive, but Jesus is not pleased.
Douglas Connelly (The Book of Revelation for Blockheads: A User-Friendly Look at the Bible’s Weirdest Book)
But what about mankind’s physical body? How did God conjure up the physical features of a human being? Friend, He patterned us after himself!!! “And God said, Let US make man…after our likeness” (Genesis 1:26). The original Hebrew word translated “likeness” is “demût”, meaning: likeness, figure, image, form. In a nutshell, we were fashioned to look like God! Thus, the physical concept of a human being having legs to walk, arms to hold, torso to twist, eyes to see, mouth to taste, nose to smell, and ears to hear was not the product of millions of years of random, evolutionary chance: It was God making us “like Him”! It is insanity to believe mindless spontaneity created the physical features of a human being, yet macro-evolutionary theory proposes such a ridiculous idea. Scientists, if you want to know where the ear and the eye came from, study the Scriptures: “Understand, ye brutish among the people: and ye fools, when will you be wise? He (God) that planted the ear, shall he not hear? He (God) that formed the eye, shall he not see?” (Psalms 94:8, 9). Scientists are still trying to understand “light”, for it is an extremely complex phenomenon, having the properties of both waves and particles. Yet, macro-evolutionists want us to believe good-old random “nothingness” knew exactly what light is, designing an eye to “capture it”, optic
Gabriel Ansley (Undeniable Biblical Proof Jesus Christ Will Return to Planet Earth Exactly 2,000 Years After the Year of His Death: What You Must Do To Be Ready!)
So, what information do you want to gather during this first interview? Foremost is her description of why she is here now as opposed to six months ago or six years ago (this is known in clinical parlance as the “presenting problem”). You want the basic data if you don’t have them: name, age, marital status, occupation; with whom she lives and where; any previous experiences of therapy; and perhaps some preliminary information about her family of origin. You also want to get some sense of her support system: Does she have friends? Do her relatives live nearby? Does she have a good working relationship with colleagues at her job? Many of these answers will emerge spontaneously. If they don’t, ask for them. Toward the end of the session, you want to leave yourself enough time to ask the client if she has any questions. In addition, you want to ask whether she would like to come back again and talk further. You might help her make that decision by pointing out what you are seeing, e.g., that she seems to be struggling with her feelings about her father’s death or that it is sometimes difficult to know the right thing to do when you are having trouble with your child. The goal here is to try and arrive at a mutual definition, in language that seems right to the client, of what the presenting problem is. Under the best circumstances the client will say something like, “That’s exactly the way I would have said it.” If you do not reach a mutual definition, however, that is not a reason to despair, since you are new at this. It is perfectly alright to suggest that the client return again so you can further explore and clarify what it is she would like your help with. If
Susan Lukas (Where to Start and What to Ask: An Assessment Handbook)
And heaven forbid that a long-lost friend should spontaneously stop by without making arrangements in advance.
Nancy Sleeth (Almost Amish: One Woman's Quest for a Slower, Simpler, More Sustainable Life)
Human life as a cluster of mussels clinging to rocks in the sea, human beings as beetles and vermin, man as a shoal of writhing fish brought gasping to the surface in nets. If, however, we stand up close to each individual, so close as to hear each name as it is whispered, to look into each pair of eyes, where the soul of every human is revealed, unique and in alienable, and listen attentively to every story of a day in the life of each and every one of them, a day in the company of loved ones, family and friends, an ordinary day in an ordinary place, with all its joy and delicacy, envy and curiosity, routines and spontaneity, imagination and boredom, hate and love, then the opposite becomes apparent, the one, not as I, but as the I’s necessary. Which is you.
Karl Ove Knausgård (Min kamp 6 (Min kamp, #6))
In the very beginning of her life, the girl-child has direct access to the spirit of life. It is as near to her as the breath that fills her. And it connects her to everything. She is not alone. Her spirit is one with the spirit of her beloved grandmother, her favorite rock, tree, and star. She develops her own methods for contacting the spirit in all things. She climbs a tree and sits in its branches, listening. She loves the woods and listens there too. She has a special friend—a rock. She gives it a name and eats her lunch with it whenever she can. She keeps the window open next to her bed even on the coldest of nights. She loves the fresh air on her face. She pulls the covers tight around her chin and listens to the mysterious night sky. She believes that her grandmother is present even though everyone else says she is dead. Each night, she drapes the curtain over her shoulders for privacy, looks out the window near her bed, listens for Grandma and then says silent prayers to her. Her imagination is free for a time. She does not need priest or teacher to describe god to her. Spirit erupts spontaneously in colorful and unique expressions. God is Grandma, the twinkling evening star, the gentle breeze that washes across her face, the peaceful quiet darkness after everyone has fallen asleep, and all the colors of the rainbow. And because she is a girl, her experience and expression of spirit is uniquely feminine. The spirit of the universe pulsates through her. She is full of herself.
Patricia Lynn Reilly (A Deeper Wisdom: The 12 Steps from a Woman's Perspective)
Morning,” he said, headed for the coffeepot. When he got back to the table and sat, he was met by her glare. “What?” he asked, perplexed. “I cannot believe you did that,” she said. “Did what?” he asked. “My best friend. You know she’s been through a hard time.” He looked around a little frantically. “Vanni, what? Where’s Nikki?” “Gone,” she said flatly. “Gone?” he asked, rising out of his chair. “Gone?” “Yes,” she affirmed. “What were you thinking?” He gave a huff of unhappy laughter. “I was thinking I’d just found the woman of my dreams,” he said. “She left?” “In tears,” Vanni said, her mouth set in a grim line. “Tears? Vanni, I did not make her cry!” “Didn’t you have sex with her all night long in that little fifth wheel?” she asked, anger in her tone. Hoo-boy. You don’t talk about that, especially when it’s meaningful. “Vanni, I swear to you, I didn’t do anything to hurt her.” “Didn’t you find her on the deck, crying, and kiss her and seduce her and take her to that little trailer?” “Well… Yeah… I did that part….” And he was thinking, was there a felony in there somewhere? Because all through the night the only thing he had tried to do was show her how much she could be loved. And it was wonderful; she was wonderful. Spontaneous and aroused and ultimately quite satisfied. And happy. He’d heard her sigh, he’d heard her laugh. There was absolutely no crying. “Didn’t it occur to you that after her heart had been broken, that was probably not a great idea?” He got a little angry himself. He leaned his hands on the table, got a little bit in her face and said, “No. I thought it was a terrific idea, and so did she. I wanted to be good to her and I was. I treated her with absolute respect, and she consented one hundred percent. Now, give me her number. I need to talk to her as soon as possible.” “She said absolutely no.” “What? No, I have to get in touch with her. Vanni, this isn’t funny.” “No, it’s not. I just don’t know what went through your mind.” “Wait a minute here, I didn’t talk her into anything! I was a perfect gentleman, I swear to God!” “Don’t you know anything about women?” she asked him. “Apparently not!” he answered hotly. “She’s just spent five years with a guy who wouldn’t come through. What do you suppose she thinks you’re going to do after one night?” “She could give me a frickin’ chance!” Vanni’s mouth was set in a firm line. “She said absolutely no.” “Oh, for God’s sake. Vanni, this is cruel and unusual. Listen, I have feelings for her. Really.” “After one night?” she asked, a definite superior tone to her voice. “Before the night,” he said. “Will you ask her to call me? Please?” “You knew her for what? Ten minutes?” “Shit,” he said. “Okay, it was fast. Okay? I admit it. But by the time we’d spent a night together it seemed…” It seemed as if he’d been with her for years! Jesus, his voice was quivering. He was losing his mind. He should be saying, fine—if that’s the way she wants it, fine. But in his head, his heart, his gut, he was feeling desperate. Driven. He was not letting this woman get away. His
Robyn Carr (Second Chance Pass)
Smile By the time an observer has taken in the information conveyed by how you stand, you are likely to have noticed his or her attention. The next step? Smile. A natural, spontaneous smile indicates friendliness or willingness to communicate. We smile to say hello, and we smile to indicate approval or interest. A frown, of course, indicates unhappiness or a bad mood, as well as lack of receptivity or skepticism. The great thing about smiling at someone is that the person usually smiles back. Smiling is an easy way to say hello, and most likely will make another person more receptive and friendly toward you. But try not to act—the smile should be genuine. Be real, and others will recognize your sincerity. A precautionary note: Make sure you combine smelling (and the other “accessible” behaviors described in this chapter) with an approach or attempt at conversation—or at least a warm hello at the right moment. If you smile for too long without further action, you may scare the other person away.
Jonathan Berent (Beyond Shyness: How to Conquer Social Anxieties)
What’s going on?  What news?” I said glancing between the two. Sam gave Clay a sharp look. “You didn’t tell her?” “He’s not talking to me, yet,” I said, wondering what bad news Sam had to share. Sam shook his head at Clay.  “You’ve dug your own hole then, son.”  He focused on me.  “A group of Forlorn have asked Elder Joshua to approach you for an unofficial kind of Introduction.  Joshua approved, but he made it clear they were to keep it brief and then leave, unless any of them had a further request of him.” The meaning of Sam’s words sunk in deep like a vicious bite.  It also explained his less than warm greeting.  He stood in my living room as an Elder on pack business, not as family or a friend.  I struggled to contain my anger. “I thought I was done with that.  We had a deal.”  I crossed my arms and coldly regarded Sam.  “I know I said I was done.” The carefully, composed expression on Sam’s face faltered a bit.  “Honey, there are rules we must follow to keep peace in the pack.  Clay had six months to convince you of his suit.  That time has passed.  That means unMated can once again approach you, with permission.” My mouth popped open.  Six months.  Permission from an Elder.  That’s why they’d stationed Joshua here.  A backup plan because they knew I didn’t want to Claim Clay.  They failed to understand I didn’t want to Claim anyone.  I’d never been free.  I clenched my fists.  My temper boiled. “That’s complete crap,” I gritted out.  “First of all, I didn’t reject anyone.  Second, no one ever told me about this stupid rule.”  My voice rose to a yell, and I took a deep breath and closed my eyes briefly to restrain myself.  When I reopened them, I felt more in control and able to speak calmly.  “You know what?  I don’t care what the pack rules are.  I gave you my word and my time.  Now, I expect you to keep yours.  I worked hard to get here, Sam.  I won’t let anyone take this away from me.”  My hands shook.  That Sam had cared for me in the past and given me a place to call home for two years, kept my tongue marginally civil. “By not completing the Claim, you’ve become eligible again.  Charlene was granted a special consideration because, at that time, we weren’t even sure a Claiming would be possible between a human and a werewolf.  Now that we know it is, you fall under the same rules,” Sam explained calmly, his face again carefully devoid of emotion. “No, I don’t.”  I knew I could stand there and argue all day with Sam, and he wouldn’t budge.  It would always be whatever’s best for the pack with him.  “Is this why Clay was beat up?” Clay made a noise—like a snort of disagreement—behind me. “Feel free to jump in at any time,” I said, turning to arch an eyebrow at him.  He remained mute, but his eyes softened when he looked at me. Sam spoke up from behind me, but I didn’t turn to look at him. “Gabby, it’s the reason he’s been fighting.  He’s not relinquishing his tie to you.  Every time an unMated shows up here, he will challenge that man for his right for an Introduction.  Did Clay get beat up?  Only as a byproduct of handing out beatings.” Clay steadily met my gaze the entire time.  It broke my heart a little to know he was fighting so hard to keep me, and all I’d given him in those six months was a kiss.  Not even spontaneously given, but relinquished as part of a bribe.  I hadn’t rejected him.  I just didn’t want to be forced into a choice.  If I chose to be with Clay, I wanted it to be on our terms. “Why
Melissa Haag (Hope(less) (Judgement of the Six #1))
Extroverts typically . . . • Process information externally by verbalizing, collaborating, brainstorming, discussing, sharing their ideas, and communicating until they achieve desired results. • Are rejuvenated and re-charged by being around people, interacting with friends and family, and having dynamic conversations. • Enjoy the excitement and adventure of a new situation or setting. • Tend to be more colorful, unpredictable, daring, stylish, and cluttered in their clothing, home furnishings, offices, and surroundings. • Love meeting new people and making new friends. They enjoy variety and engaging on all levels. • Are very spontaneous, resilient, and adapt well to change.
Susan C. Young (The Art of Communication: 8 Ways to Confirm Clarity & Understanding for Positive Impact(The Art of First Impressions for Positive Impact, #5))
How about a chocolate shake, it’s on me, big boy,” one boy said. “Shut up.” I grinned. They were still teasing their friend. Good. If they were teasing him, maybe it was because he thought I was cute, too. Maybe he’d come back to the restaurant tomorrow, find me, ask for my number, and then who knows? I couldn’t help myself — I creeped along the backside of the restaurant and peered around the corner. The boys were walking in the other direction. The shortest of the boys pushed the tall, cute one. “Enjoy your chocolate shake. It’s free, because I’m so desperate for you to notice me.” Oof. That stung. I wasn’t desperate; I was just trying to be spontaneous. And flirty. And fun. The other boy punched the tall one in the shoulder. “You know, I’ve heard you’re only as attractive as the people that ask you out. So you should probably think about plastic surgery.” That offhand comment, that comment that I wasn’t supposed to hear, was a slap in the face on a freezing winter day.
Emily Lowry (Dylan Ramirez is My Forbidden Boyfriend (Rumors and Lies at Evermore High #3))
IN 1971, as the Vietnam War was heading into its sixteenth year, congressmen Robert Steele from Connecticut and Morgan Murphy from Illinois made a discovery that stunned the American public. While visiting the troops, they had learned that over 15 percent of U.S. soldiers stationed there were heroin addicts. Follow-up research revealed that 35 percent of service members in Vietnam had tried heroin and as many as 20 percent were addicted—the problem was even worse than they had initially thought. The discovery led to a flurry of activity in Washington, including the creation of the Special Action Office of Drug Abuse Prevention under President Nixon to promote prevention and rehabilitation and to track addicted service members when they returned home. Lee Robins was one of the researchers in charge. In a finding that completely upended the accepted beliefs about addiction, Robins found that when soldiers who had been heroin users returned home, only 5 percent of them became re-addicted within a year, and just 12 percent relapsed within three years. In other words, approximately nine out of ten soldiers who used heroin in Vietnam eliminated their addiction nearly overnight. This finding contradicted the prevailing view at the time, which considered heroin addiction to be a permanent and irreversible condition. Instead, Robins revealed that addictions could spontaneously dissolve if there was a radical change in the environment. In Vietnam, soldiers spent all day surrounded by cues triggering heroin use: it was easy to access, they were engulfed by the constant stress of war, they built friendships with fellow soldiers who were also heroin users, and they were thousands of miles from home. Once a soldier returned to the United States, though, he found himself in an environment devoid of those triggers. When the context changed, so did the habit. Compare this situation to that of a typical drug user. Someone becomes addicted at home or with friends, goes to a clinic to get clean—which is devoid of all the environmental stimuli that prompt their habit—then returns to their old neighborhood with all of their previous cues that caused them to get addicted in the first place. It’s no wonder that usually you see numbers that are the exact opposite of those in the Vietnam study. Typically, 90 percent of heroin users become re-addicted once they return home from rehab.
James Clear (Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones)
It does not come naturally to me to be spontaneous, and admittedly that is the only way in which it can come. As soon as you have planned to do something spontaneously, you actually haven’t. Why wouldn’t you choose to plan something ahead of time rather than ‘see how it goes’? I can tell you how it will go, my friend – not as well as it would have if you had planned it.
Jon Richardson (It's Not Me, It's You)
It was obvious that the violence was a protest. It made sense that it would be: that football matches were providing an outlet for frustrations of a powerful nature. So many young people were out of work or had never been able to find any. The violence, it followed, was a rebellion of some kind—social rebellion, class rebellion, something. I wanted to know more. I had read about the violence and, to the extent that I thought about it, had assumed that it was an isolated thing or mysterious in the way that crowd violence is meant to be mysterious: unpredictable, spontaneous, the mob. My journey from Wales suggested that it might be more intended, more willed. It offered up a vision of the English Saturday, the shopping day, that was different from the one I had known: that in the towns and cities, you might find hundreds of police, military in their comprehensiveness, out to contain young, male sports fans who, after attending an athletic contest, were determined to break or destroy the things that were in their way. It was hard to believe. I repeated the story of my journey to friends, but I was surprised by how unsurprised they were. Some acted as if they were disgusted; others were amused; no one thought it was anything extraordinary. It was one of the things you put up with: that every Saturday young males trashed your trains, broke the windows of your pubs, destroyed your cars, wreaked havoc on your town centres. I didn’t buy it, but it seemed to be so. In fact the only time I felt that I had said something surprising was when I revealed that, although I had now seen a football crowd, I had never been to an English football match. This, it seemed, was shocking.
Bill Buford (Among the Thugs)
Enthusiasm is bad. Calm and resolution constitute the strength of virtue. “That is the state of health in moral life, whereas the affect, even when it is excited by the idea of the good, is a momentarily lustrous phenomenon which leaves behind lassitude.”25 Juliette’s friend Clairwil makes exactly the same observation with regard to vice.26 “My soul is hardened, and I am far from preferring sensibility to the happy indifference I now enjoy. Oh Juliette . . . perhaps you are deceiving yourself about the dangerous sensibility prized by so many fools.” Apathy arises at the turning points in bourgeois history, as in the history of antiquity, when the pauci beati become aware of their powerlessness in face of the overwhelming historical tendency. It marks the retreat of the individual’s spontaneity into the private sphere, which is thus established as the truly bourgeois form of existence. Stoicism—which is the bourgeois philosophy—makes it easier for the privileged to look what threatens them in the eye by dwelling on the suffering of others. It affirms the general by elevating private existence, as protection from it, to the status of a principle. The private sphere of the bourgeois* is an upper-class cultural asset which has come down in the world.
Max Horkheimer (Dialectic of Enlightenment: Philosophical Fragments (Cultural Memory in the Present))
The most a historian can do is to take the particular processes of the historical world which he is supposed to elucidate, and let these events be seen in the light of higher and more general forces which are present behind and develop in these events; his task is to show the concrete sub specie aeterni. But he is not in a position to determine the essence of this higher and eternal force itself or to determine the relationship it bears to concrete reality. Thus he can only say that in historical life he beholds a world which, though unified, is bipolar: a world which needs both poles to be as it appears to us. Physical nature and intellect, causality according to law and creative spontaneity, are these two poles, which stand in such sharp and apparently irreconcilable opposition. But historical life, as it unfolds between them, is always influenced simultaneously by both, even if not always by both to the same degree. The historian’s task would be an easy one if he could content himself with this straightforward dualistic interpretation of the relationship between physical nature and intellect, as it corresponds to the Christian and ethical tradition of earlier centuries. Then he would have nothing more to do than describe the struggle between light and darkness, between sin and forgiveness, between the world of intellect and that of the senses. He would be a war-correspondent; and taking up his position (naturally enough) in the intellectual camp he would be able to distinguish friend from foe with certainty.
Friedrich Meinecke (Machiavellism: The Doctrine of Raison d'Etat and Its Place in Modern History)
The most a historian can do is to take the particular processes of the historical world which he is supposed to elucidate, and let these events be seen in the light of higher and more general forces which are present behind and develop in these events; his task is to show the concrete sub specie aeterni. But he is not in a position to determine the essence of this higher and eternal force itself or to determine the relationship it bears to concrete reality. Thus he can only say that in historical life he beholds a world which, though unified, is bipolar: a world which needs both poles to be as it appears to us. Physical nature and intellect, causality according to law and creative spontaneity, are these two poles, which stand in such sharp and apparently irreconcilable opposition. But historical life, as it unfolds between them, is always influenced simultaneously by both, even if not always by both to the same degree. The historian’s task would be an easy one if he could content himself with this straightforward dualistic interpretation of the relationship between physical nature and intellect, as it corresponds to the Christian and ethical tradition of earlier centuries. Then he would have nothing more to do than describe the struggle between light and darkness, between sin and forgiveness, between the world of intellect and that of the senses. He would be a war-correspondent; and taking up his position (naturally enough) in the intellectual camp he would be able to distinguish friend from foe with certainty.
Friedrich Meinecke (Machiavellism: The Doctrine of Raison d'Etat and Its Place in Modern History)
When we look at love relationships in more detail, it is clear that the simple word love cannot adequately describe the wide variety of feelings two individuals can have for each other. In the first two stages of a love relationship, romantic love and the power struggle, love is reactive; it is an unconscious response to the expectation of need fulfillment. Love is best described as eros, life energy seeking union with a gratifying object. When both partners in an intimate relationship make a decision to create a more satisfying relationship, they enter a stage of transfor- mation, and love becomes infused with consciousness and will; love is best de- fined as agape, the life energy directed toward the partner in an intentional act of healing. Now, in the final stage of a conscious partnership, reality love, love takes on the quality of spontaneous oscillation, words that come from quantum physics and describe the way energy moves back and forth between particles. When part- ners learn to see each other without distortion, to value each other as highly as they value themselves, to give without expecting anything in return, to commit themselves fully to each other’s welfare, love moves freely between them without apparent effort. The word that best describes this mature kind of love is not eros, not agape, but yet another Greek word, philia,² which means “love between friends.” The partner is no longer perceived as a surrogate parent or as an enemy but as a passionate friend. It is where we experience the original connecting, when the initial rupture is repaired, and we feel fully safe, relaxed, loved, joyful, and pro- foundly connected. When couples are able to love in this selfless manner, they experience a release of energy. They cease to be consumed by the details of their relationship or to need to operate within the artificial structure of exercises; they spontaneously treat each other with love and respect. What feels unnatural to them is not their new way of relating but the self-centered, wounding interactions of the past. Love becomes automatic, much as it was in the earliest stage of the relationship, but now it is based on the truth of the partner, not on illusion. One characteristic of couples who have reached this advanced stage of con- sciousness is that they begin to turn their energy away from each other toward the woundedness of the world. They develop a greater concern for the environment, for people in need, for important causes. The capacity to love and heal that they have created within the relationship is now available for others.
Harville Hendrix