Testify Quotes

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All photographs are memento mori. To take a photograph is to participate in another person’s (or thing’s) mortality, vulnerability, mutability. Precisely by slicing out this moment and freezing it, all photographs testify to time’s relentless melt.
Susan Sontag
Please try to remember that what they believe, as well as what they do and cause you to endure does not testify to your inferiority but to their inhumanity
James Baldwin (Holt McDougal Library, High School with Connections: Student Text The Fire Next Time)
And sometimes you held somebody’s hand just to prove that you were still alive, and that another human being was there to testify to that fact.
Rainbow Rowell (Fangirl)
I felt like lying down by the side of the trail and remembering it all. The woods do that to you, they always look familiar, long lost, like the face of a long-dead relative, like an old dream, like a piece of forgotten song drifting across the water, most of all like golden eternities of past childhood or past manhood and all the living and the dying and the heartbreak that went on a million years ago and the clouds as they pass overhead seem to testify (by their own lonesome familiarity) to this feeling.
Jack Kerouac (The Dharma Bums)
For the survivor who chooses to testify, it is clear: his duty is to bear witness for the dead and for the living. He has no right to deprive future generations of a past that belongs to our collective memory. To forget would be not only dangerous but offensive; to forget the dead would be akin to killing them a second time.
Elie Wiesel (Night (The Night Trilogy, #1))
...no woman can love a weak man hard enough to make him strong.
Pearl Cleage (Just Wanna Testify (West End, #5))
to take a photograph is to participate in another person's mortality, vulnerability, mutability. precisely by slicing out this moment and freezing it, all photographs testify to time's relentless melt.
Susan Sontag (On Photography)
Then Raya saw Rebecca West, the fourteen-year-old who only saved her own life by testifying against her mother, and then she saw her own face reflected in these girls – a swirl of chance, and life and sorrow.
Sara Pascoe (Being a Witch, and Other Things I Didn't Ask For)
Each of us will have our own Fridays—those days when the universe itself seems shattered and the shards of our world lie littered about us in pieces. We all will experience those broken times when it seems we can never be put together again. We will all have our Fridays. But I testify to you in the name of the One who conquered death—Sunday will come. In the darkness of our sorrow, Sunday will come. No matter our desperation, no matter our grief, Sunday will come. In this life or the next, Sunday will come.
Joseph B. Wirthlin
Do not try to make the Bible relevant. Its relevance is axiomatic. Do not defend God's word, but testify to it. Trust to the Word. It is a ship loaded to the very limits of its capacity. -Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Eric Metaxas (Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy)
...A scar signifies past pain, a wound that did not heal as it ought. But it testifies, too, to survival...(Here be Dragons)
Sharon Kay Penman
I know the resurrection is a fact, and Watergate proved it to me. How? Because 12 men testified they had seen Jesus raised from the dead, then they proclaimed that truth for 40 years, never once denying it. Every one was beaten, tortured, stoned and put in prison. They would not have endured that if it weren't true. Watergate embroiled 12 of the most powerful men in the world-and they couldn't keep a lie for three weeks. You're telling me 12 apostles could keep a lie for 40 years? Absolutely impossible.
Charles W. Colson
Some problems we share as women, some we do not. You fear your children will grow up to join the patriarchy and testify against you; we fear our children will be dragged from a car and shot down in the street, and you will turn your backs on the reasons they are dying.
Audre Lorde
When you call me close to tell me your body is not beautiful I want to summon the eyes and hidden mouths of stone and light and water to testify against you.
Leonard Cohen
As a confirmed melancholic, I can testify that the best and maybe only antidote for melancholia is action. However, like most melancholics, I suffer also from sloth.
Edward Abbey
I testify that He is utterly incomparable in what He is, what He knows, what He has accomplished and what He has experienced. Yet, movingly, He calls us His Friends
Neal A. Maxwell
However late you think you are, however many chances you think you have missed, however many mistakes you feel you have made or talents you think you don’t have, or however far from home and family and God you feel you have traveled, I testify that you have not traveled beyond the reach of divine love. It is not possible for you to sink lower than the infinite light of Christ’s Atonement shines.
Jeffrey R. Holland
History is the witness that testifies to the passing of time; it illumines reality, vitalizes memory, provides guidance in daily life and brings us tidings of antiquities. 

Marcus Tullius Cicero
Please try to remember that what they believe, as well as what they do and cause you to endure, does not testify to your inferiority but to their inhumanity and fear.
James Baldwin (The Fire Next Time)
Time is the worst place, so to speak, to get lost in, as Arthur Dent could testify, having been lost in both time and space a good deal. At least being lost in space kept you busy.
Douglas Adams (Life, the Universe and Everything (The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #3))
Habitual procrastinators will readily testify to all the lost opportunities, missed deadlines, failed relationships and even monetary losses incurred just because of one nasty habit of putting things off until it is often too late.
Stephen Richards (The Secret of Getting Started: Strategies to Triumph over Procrastination)
The most difficult dilemma for a person is perhaps when his heart testifies to an inevitable reality yet his tongue will not proclaim it, when his mind screams in acceptance of truth but he cant bring himself to state it.
Umera Ahmed (Peer e Kamil)
I’ve successfully lobbied and testified for stalking laws in several states, but I would trade them all for a high school class that would teach young men how to hear “no,” and teach young women that it’s all right to explicitly reject.
Gavin de Becker (The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence)
The candle is not lit To give light, but to testify to the night.
Robert Bly (The Night Abraham Called to the Stars: Poems)
I hardly think so. If I was ashamed, I wouldn’t have testified on your behalf, admitting the truth that I was your father in front of the United States Naval Court. But, I don’t think now is the time to discuss these matters.
Behcet Kaya (Murder on the Naval Base)
Any time your life is at stake and you can't find even one woman to come forward and say, 'This is a good man,' your problem isn't what kind of woman THEY are. Your problem is what kind of men YOU are.
Pearl Cleage (Just Wanna Testify (West End, #5))
Whatever people say about the General today, I can only testify that he was a sincere man who believed in everything he said, even if it was a lie, which makes him not so different from most.
Viet Thanh Nguyen (The Sympathizer)
I testify that no one of us is less treasured or cherished of God than another. I testify that He loves each of us—insecurities, anxieties, self-image, and all. He doesn’t measure our talents or our looks; He doesn’t measure our professions or our possessions. He cheers on every runner, calling out that the race is against sin, not against each other.
Jeffrey R. Holland
To be angry is to yield to the influence of Satan. No one can make us angry. It is our choice. If we desire to have a proper spirit with us at all times, we must choose to refrain from becoming angry. I testify that such is possible.
Thomas S. Monson
As the many male victims of rape in the regime's disgusting jails can testify, this state-run pathology of sexual repression and sexual sadism is not content to degrade women only.
Christopher Hitchens (Hitch 22: A Memoir)
MR.GOUDY: I believe you testified that you backed away from Aaron Wharton. MR.COGBURN: That is right. MR.GOUDY: You were backing away? MR.COGBURN: Yes sir. He had that ax raised. MR.GOUDY: Which direction were you going? MR.COGBURN: I always go backwards when I am backing up.
Charles Portis (True Grit)
The details and symbols of your life have been deliberately constructed to make you believe what white people say about you. Please try to remember that what they believe, as well as what they do and cause you to endure, does not testify to your inferiority but to their inhumanity and fear.
James Baldwin (The Fire Next Time)
...And eventually, he (Charles Manson) testified to an empty court, as Bugliosi had convinced the presiding judge Older, that Manson's hypnotic powers might convince the jury he was innocent.
Nikolas Schreck
when a wife wouldn't testify, little punishment was meted out. Alex came to understand that only those who pressed charges ever became truly free, because the life they were leading was a prison, even if most of them wouldn't admit it.
Nicholas Sparks
Only the subject's individual consciousness can testify for the unwitnessed acts, and there is no act more deprived of external testimony than the act of knowing.
Olavo de Carvalho
Every living thing is, from the cosmic perspective, incredibly lucky simply to be alive. Most, 90 percent and more, of all the organisms that have ever lived have died without viable offspring, but not a single one of your ancestors, going back to the dawn of life on Earth, suffered that normal misfortune. You spring from an unbroken line of winners going back millions of generations, and those winners were, in every generation, the luckiest of the lucky, one out of a thousand or even a million. So however unlucky you may be on some occasion today, your presence on the planet testifies to the role luck has played in your past.
Daniel C. Dennett (Freedom Evolves)
This guy is an epic douche. Kick his shiny ass, Atticus, Oberon said. I compartmentalized his comment and resolved to enjoy it later. I glared at this would be usurper and said in my most authoritative voice, "Aenghus Og, you have broken Druidic law by killing the land around us and opening a gate to hell, unleashing demons on this plane. I judge you guilty and sentence you to death." Amen, Atticus! Testify!
Kevin Hearne (Hounded (The Iron Druid Chronicles, #1))
The chef turned back to the housekeeper. “Why is there doubt about the relations between Monsieur and Madame Rutledge?” The sheets,” she said succinctly. Jake nearly choked on his pastry. “You have the housemaids spying on them?” he asked around a mouthful of custard and cream. Not at all,” the housekeeper said defensively. “It’s only that we have vigilant maids who tell me everything. And even if they didn’t, one hardly needs great powers of observation to see that they do not behave like a married couple.” The chef looked deeply concerned. “You think there’s a problem with his carrot?” Watercress, carrot—is everything food to you?” Jake demanded. The chef shrugged. “Oui.” Well,” Jake said testily, “there is a string of Rutledge’s past mistresses who would undoubtedly testify there is nothing wrong with his carrot.” Alors, he is a virile man . . . she is a beautiful woman . . . why are they not making salad together?
Lisa Kleypas (Tempt Me at Twilight (The Hathaways, #3))
And yet some people actually imagine that the revelation in God’s Word is not enough to meet our needs. They think that God from time to time carries on an actual conversation with them, chatting with them, satisfying their doubts, testifying to His love for them, promising them support and blessings. As a result, their emotions soar; they are full of bubbling joy that is mixed with self-confidence and a high opinion of themselves. The foundation for these feelings, however, does not lie within the Bible itself, but instead rests on the sudden creations of their imaginations. These people are clearly deluded. God’s Word is for all of us and each of us; He does not need to give particular messages to particular people.
Jonathan Edwards
In a world of unrest and fear, political turmoil and moral drift, I testify that Jesus is the Christ—that He is the living Bread and living Water—still, yet, and always the great Shield of safety in our lives.
Jeffrey R. Holland
There is a time in every man's education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance; that imitation is suicide; that he must take himself for better for worse as his portion; that though the wide universe is full of good, no kernel of nourishing corn can come to him but through his toil bestowed on that plot of ground which is given to him to till. The power which resides in him is new in nature, and none but he knows what that is which he can do, nor does he know until he has tried. Not for nothing one face, one character, one fact makes much impression on him, and another none. This sculpture in the memory is not without preéstablishcd harmony. The eye was placed where one ray should fall, that it might testify of that particular ray. We but half express ourselves, and are ashamed of that divine idea which each of us represents. It may be safely trusted as proportionate and of good issues, so it be faithfully imparted, but God will not have his work made manifest by cowards. A man is relieved and gay when he has put his heart into his work and done his best; but what he has said or done otherwise shall give hint no peace. It is a deliverance which does not deliver. In the attempt his genius deserts him; no muse befriends; no invention, no hope.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (Self-Reliance: An Excerpt from Collected Essays, First Series)
The woods do that to you, they always look familiar, long lost, like the face of a long-dead relative, like an old dream, like a piece of forgotten song drifting across the water, most of all like golden eternities of past childhood or past manhood and all the living and the dying and the heartbreak that went on a million years ago and the clouds as they pass overhead seem to testify by their own lonesome familiarities to this feeling. Ecstasy, even , I felt, with flashes of sudden remembrance, and feeling sweaty and drowsy I felt like sleeping and dreaming in the grass.
Jack Kerouac (The Dharma Bums)
Never exaggerate. It is a matter of great importance to forego superlatives, in part to avoid offending the truth, and in part to avoid cheapening your judgment. Exaggeration wastes distinction and testifies to the paucity of your understanding and taste. Praise excites anticipation and stimulates desire. Afterwards when value does not measure up to price, disappointment turns against the fraud and takes revenge by cheapening both the appraised and the appraise. For this reason let the prudent go slowly, and err in understatement rather than overstatement. The extraordinary of every kind is always rare, wherefore temper your estimate.
Baltasar Gracián (The Art of Worldly Wisdom: A Pocket Oracle)
You guys just wait and see. We'll stand taller than these mountains. We'll bare open our hearts for the world to grab. We'll see lights where there was dimness. We'll testify together to what we have seen and felt. Life will go on--all of us--crawling; stumbling, falling perhaps. But we will be the strong ones. Our hearts will shine brightly.
Douglas Coupland (Girlfriend in a Coma)
Oslo probably owed them money. Sockeye Sammy’s shiner testified that it might not be a good idea to stiff his employer. But if I couldn’t pay up, I’d surely make myself scarce, too!
Mark Barkawitz (Full Moon Saturday Night)
I testify that I am free and alive when I am forgotten
Mahmoud Darwish
The optimization of cosmic darkness and of Earth's location within the dark universe that sacrifices neither the material needs of human beings nor their capacity to gain knowledge about the universe reflects masterful engineering at a level far beyond human capability- and even imagination. It testifies of a supernatural, superintelligent, superpowerful, fully deliberate Creator.
Hugh Ross (Why the Universe Is the Way It Is)
Outward beauty is a true sign of inner goodness. This loveliness, indeed, is impressed upon the body in varying degrees as a token by which the soul can be recognized for what it is, just as with trees the beauty of the blossom testifies to the goodness of the fruit.
Baldassare Castiglione (The Book of the Courtier)
Truths turn into dogmas the instant that they are disputed. Thus every man who utters a doubt defines a religion. And the scepticism of our time does not really destroy the beliefs, rather it creates them; gives them their limits and their plain and defiant shape. We who are Liberals once held Liberalism lightly as a truism. Now it has been disputed, and we hold it fiercely as a faith. We who believe in patriotism once thought patriotism to be reasonable, and thought little more about it. Now we know it to be unreasonable, and know it to be right. We who are Christians never knew the great philosophic common sense which inheres in that mystery until the anti-Christian writers pointed it out to us. The great march of mental destruction will go on. Everything will be denied. Everything will become a creed. It is a reasonable position to deny the stones in the street; it will be a religious dogma to assert them. It is a rational thesis that we are all in a dream; it will be a mystical sanity to say that we are all awake. Fires will be kindled to testify that two and two make four. Swords will be drawn to prove that leaves are green in summer. We shall be left defending, not only the incredible virtues and sanities of human life, but something more incredible still, this huge impossible universe which stares us in the face. We shall fight for visible prodigies as if they were invisible. We shall look on the impossible grass and the skies with a strange courage. We shall be of those who have seen and yet have believed.
G.K. Chesterton (Heretics)
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is an indispensable companion to all those who are keen to make sense of life in an infinitely complex and confusing Universe, for though it cannot hope to be useful or informative on all matters, it does at least make the reassuring claim, that where it is inaccurate it is at least definitively inaccurate. In cases of major discrepancy it's always reality that's got it wrong. This was the gist of the notice. It said "The Guide is definitive. Reality is frequently inaccurate." This has led to some interesting consequences. For instance, when the Editors of the Guide were sued by the families of those who had died as a result of taking the entry on the planet Tralal literally (it said "Ravenous Bugblatter Beasts often make a very good meal for visiting tourists: instead of "Ravenous Bugblatter Beasts often make a very good meal of visiting tourists"), they claimed that the first version of the sentence was the more aesthetically pleasing, summoned a qualified poet to testify under oath that beauty was truth, truth beauty and hoped thereby to prove that the guilty party in this case was Life itself for failing to be either beautiful or true. The judges concurred, and in a moving speech held that Life itself was in contempt of court, and duly confiscated it from all those there present before going off to enjoy a pleasant evening's ultragolf.
Douglas Adams (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1))
Innumerable conditions must be exquisitely optimized for the support of humanity and of civilization. Many of them are highly time variable. Evidence showing that a wide variety of independent conditions all reached optimality during the identical narrow epoch when human beings appeared on the cosmic and terrestrial scene testifies of supernatural design and purpose rather than mere coincidence.
Hugh Ross (Why the Universe Is the Way It Is)
I can testify, from my own experience and observation, that slavery is a curse to the whites as well as to the blacks. It makes white fathers cruel and sensual; the sons violent and licentious; it contaminates the daughters, and makes the wives wretched.
Harriet Ann Jacobs (Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl Written by Herself)
Perhaps that is why we must, by law, keep a record. A public journal, testifying to those who will never die and those who are yet to be born, as to why we human beings do the things we do. We are instructed to write down not just our deeds but our feelings, because it must be known that we do have feelings. Remorse. Regret. Sorrow too great to bear. Because if we didn't feel those things, what monsters would we be?
Neal Shusterman (Scythe (Arc of a Scythe, #1))
None of us is less treasured or cherished of God than another. I testify that He loves each of us-- Insecurities, anxieties, poor self-image, and all. He doesn't measure our talents or our looks; He doesn't measure our professions or our possessions. He cheers on every runner, calling out that the race is against sin, not against each other.
Jeffrey R. Holland (Created for Greater Things)
I like you,” Gary finally said in a low voice. “Thank you? I thought you already did.” “No. Like, I really like you. Before, I was just pretending. I actually think I almost despised you. But now I don’t.” “You almost despised me.” “Almost.” “And now you don’t.” “Now I don’t.” “Because….” Gary breathed more on his face, nostrils flaring. Then (finally), “Unicorns are fickle creatures. I don’t need a reason to change my mind. It’s been done and you should just accept it and be thankful I no longer plot to murder you in your sleep.” “Testify,” Tiggy said. “So now you have affection for me,” Ryan said, “and you—” “I didn’t say affection. I said I liked you, not that I’m ready to pick out curtains. Gods. Calm the fuck down. You’re engaged to be married. I will not be your dirty little secret. I am a strong, independent unicorn, and I will not take your shit.
T.J. Klune (The Lightning-Struck Heart (Tales From Verania, #1))
Do not try to make the Bible relevant. Its relevance is axiomatic. . . . Do not defend God’s Word, but testify to it. . . . Trust to the Word. It is a ship loaded to the very limits of its capacity!
Eric Metaxas (Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy)
But let me say this. I am a superstitious man, a ridiculous failing but I must confess it here. And so if some unlucky accident should befall my youngest son, if some police officer should accidentally shoot him, if he should hang himself while in his jail cell, if new witnesses appear to testify to his guilt, my superstition will make me feel that it was the result of the ill will still borne me by some people here. Let me go further. If my son is struck by a bolt of lightning I will blame some of the people here. If his plane show fall into the sea or his ship sink beneath the waves of the ocean, if he should catch a mortal fever, if his automobile should be struck by a train, such is my superstition that I would blame the ill will felt by people here. Gentlemen, that ill will, that bad luck, I could never forgive. But aside from that let me swear by the souls of my grandchildren that I will never break the peace we have made. After all, are we or are we not better men than those pezzonovanti who have killed countless millions of men in our lifetimes?
Mario Puzo (The Godfather (The Godfather, #1))
We spend too much time wondering what others may have thought about our outfit or the comment we made in the small group meeting. We see opportunities to testify about Christ, but we avoid them. We are more concerned about looking stupid (a fear of people) than we are about acting sinfully (fear of the Lord).
Edward T. Welch
Even in the greatest afflictions, we ought to testify to God, that, in receiving them from his hand, we feel pleasure in the midst of the pain, from being afflicted by Him who loves us, and whom we love.
John Wesley (A Plain Account of Christian Perfection)
The gift of the Holy Ghost is a gift of power. The Holy Ghost inspires and heals, guides and warns, enhances our natural capacities, inspires charity and humility, makes us smarter than we are, strengthens us during trials, testifies of the Father and the Son, and shows us "all things" that we should do. He helps us do more and become more than we could ever do or become on our own.
Sheri Dew (Saying It Like It Is)
Trust a witness in all matters in which neither his self-interest, his passions, his prejudices, nor the love of the marvellous is strongly concerned. When they are involved, require corroborative evidence in exact proportion to the contravention of probability by the thing testified.
Thomas Henry Huxley (Essays Upon Some Controverted Questions)
The way you get people to testify against themselves is not to have police tactics and oppressive techniques. What you do is build it in so people learn to distrust everything in themselves that has not been sanctioned, to reject what is most creative in themselves to begin with, so you don’t even need to stamp it out.
Audre Lorde (Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches)
To be called to a life of extraordinary quality, to live up to it, and yet to be unconscious of it is indeed a narrow way. To confess and testify to the truth as it is in Jesus, and at the same time to love the enemies of that truth, his enemies and ours, and to love them with the infinite love of Jesus Christ, is indeed a narrow way. To believe the promise of Jesus that his followers shall possess the earth, and at the same time to face our enemies unarmed and defenceless, preferring to incur injustice rather than to do wrong ourselves, is indeed a narrow way. To see the weakness and wrong in others, and at the same time refrain from judging them; to deliver the gospel message without casting pearls before swine, is indeed a narrow way. The way is unutterably hard, and at every moment we are in danger of straying from it. If we regard this way as one we follow in obedience to an external command, if we are afraid of ourselves all the time, it is indeed an impossible way. But if we behold Jesus Christ going on before step by step, we shall not go astray.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (The Cost of Discipleship)
A Kite is a Victim A kite is a victim you are sure of. You love it because it pulls gentle enough to call you master, strong enough to call you fool; because it lives like a desperate trained falcon in the high sweet air, and you can always haul it down to tame it in your drawer. A kite is a fish you have already caught in a pool where no fish come, so you play him carefully and long, and hope he won't give up, or the wind die down. A kite is the last poem you've written so you give it to the wind, but you don't let it go until someone finds you something else to do. A kite is a contract of glory that must be made with the sun, so you make friends with the field the river and the wind, then you pray the whole cold night before, under the travelling cordless moon, to make you worthy and lyric and pure. Gift You tell me that silence is nearer to peace than poems but if for my gift I brought you silence (for I know silence) you would say This is not silence this is another poem and you would hand it back to me There are some men There are some men who should have mountains to bear their names through time Grave markers are not high enough or green and sons go far away to lose the fist their father’s hand will always seem I had a friend he lived and died in mighty silence and with dignity left no book son or lover to mourn. Nor is this a mourning song but only a naming of this mountain on which I walk fragrant, dark and softly white under the pale of mist I name this mountain after him. -Believe nothing of me Except that I felt your beauty more closely than my own. I did not see any cities burn, I heard no promises of endless night, I felt your beauty more closely than my own. Promise me that I will return.- -When you call me close to tell me your body is not beautiful I want to summon the eyes and hidden mouths of stone and light and water to testify against you.- Song I almost went to bed without remembering the four white violets I put in the button-hole of your green sweater and how i kissed you then and you kissed me shy as though I'd never been your lover -Reach into the vineyard of arteries for my heart. Eat the fruit of ignorance and share with me the mist and fragrance of dying.-
Leonard Cohen (The Spice-Box of Earth)
Afflictions quicken us to prayer. It is a pity it should be so; but experience testifies, that a long course of ease and prosperity, without painful changes—has an unhappy tendency to make us cold and formal in our secret worship. But troubles rouse our spirits, and constrain us to call upon the Lord in good earnest—when we feel a need of that help which we only can have from his almighty arm. Afflictions are useful, and in a degree necessary, to keep alive in us—a conviction of the vanity and unsatisfying nature of the present world, and all its enjoyments; to remind us that this world is not our rest, and to call our thoughts upwards, where our true treasure is, and where our heart ought to be. When things go on much to our wish, our hearts are too prone to say, "It is good to be here!
John Newton (The Letters of John Newton)
Two-thirty comes during Testifying. It's Janine, telling about how she was gang-raped at fourteen and had an abortion.But whose fault was it? Aunt Helena says, holding up one plump finger. Her fault, her fault, her fault. We chant in unison. Who led them on? She did. She did. She did. Why did God allow such a terrible thing to happen? Teach her a lesson. Teach her a lesson. Teach her a lesson.
Margaret Atwood (The Handmaid’s Tale (The Handmaid's Tale, #1))
But it had still made him feel vulnerable, yet another piece of evidence added to the overstuffed file testifying to his pinched prissiness, his fundamental and irreparable inability to be the sort of person he tried to make people believe he was.
Hanya Yanagihara (A Little Life)
Faith, then, is not a set of beliefs about the world. It is rather found in the loving embrace of the world. Because the actual existing church has reduced the Crucifixion and Resurrection to religious affirmations held by a certain tribe, rather than expressions of a type of life, the event they testify to has been almost completely eclipsed.
Peter Rollins (The Divine Magician: The Disappearance of Religion and the Discovery of Faith)
They call themselves believers and thereby signify that they are pilgrims, strangers and aliens in the world. Indeed, a staff in the hand does not identify a pilgrim as definitely as calling oneself a believer publicly testifies that one is on a journey, because faith simply means: What I am seeking is not here, and for that very reason I believe it. Faith expressly signifies the deep, strong, blessed restlessness that drives the believer so that he cannot settle down at rest in this world, and therefore the person who has settled down completely at rest has also ceased to be a believer, because a believer cannot sit still as one sits with a pilgrim's staff in one's hand – a believer travels forward
Søren Kierkegaard
In an ordinary crime, how does one defend the accused? One calls up witnesses to prove his innocence. But witchcraft is ipso facto, on its face and by its nature an invisible crime, is it not? The witch and the victim. None other. Now we cannot hope the witch will accuse herself; granted? Therefore, we must rely upon her victims - and they do testify, the children certainly do testify.
Arthur Miller (The Crucible: A Play in Four Acts)
Oedipus did not remember the thongs that bound his feet; nevertheless the marks they left testified to that doom toward which his feet were leading him. The man does not remember the hand that struck him, the darkness that frightened him, as a child; nevertheless, the hand and the darkness remain with him, indivisible from himself forever, part of the passion that drives him wherever he thinks to take flight.
James Baldwin (Notes of a Native Son)
I know what I'm asking is impossible. But in our time, as in every time, the impossible is the least that one can demand-and one is, after all, emboldened by the spectacle of human history in general, and the American Negro history in particular, for it testifies to nothing less than the perpetual achievement of the impossible.
James Baldwin (The Fire Next Time)
The principal feature of American liberalism is sanctimoniousness. By loudly denouncing all bad things — war and hunger and date rape — liberals testify to their own terrific goodness. More important, they promote themselves to membership in a self-selecting elite of those who care deeply about such things.... It's a kind of natural aristocracy, and the wonderful thing about this aristocracy is that you don't have to be brave, smart, strong or even lucky to join it, you just have to be liberal.
P.J. O'Rourke (Give War a Chance: Eyewitness Accounts of Mankind's Struggle Against Tyranny, Injustice, and Alcohol-Free Beer)
But, is this right for my family? The plan was centered on publicity. Would the boys have to testify? Newspaper reporters would hound them. What would things be like at school? Kids could be so cruel. Would the boys be subjected to cruel jokes about sexual desires and preferences? Was her imagination carrying her away, or were these realistic fears?
Mark M. Bello (Betrayal of Faith (Zachary Blake Legal Thriller, #1))
I testify that the tender mercies of the Lord are real and that they do not occur randomly or merely by coincidence. Often, the Lord’s timing of his tender mercies helps us to both discern and acknowledge them….The Lord’s tender mercies are the very personal and individualized blessings, strength, protection, assurances, guidance, loving-kindnesses, consolation, support, and spiritual gifts which we receive from and because of and through the Lord Jesus Christ….Faithfulness, obedience and humility invite tender mercies into our lives, and it is often the Lord’s timing that enables us to recognize and treasure these important blessings….I testify that the tender mercies of the Lord are available to all of us and that the Redeemer of Israel is eager to bestow such gifts upon us….Each of us can have eyes to see clearly and ears to hear distinctly the tender mercies of the Lord as they strengthen and assist us in these latter days.
David A. Bednar
Thus, the enabling and strengthening aspect of the Atonement helps us to see and to do and to become good in ways that we could never recognize or accomplish with our limited moral capacity. I testify and witness that the enabling power of the Savior's Atonement is real. Without that strengthening power of the Atonement, I could not stand before you this morning.
David A. Bednar
Nicolas Herman, who was commonly known as Brother Lawrence, was a simple dishwasher in the institution where he lived. He said he did those dishes for the glory of God. When he was through with his humble work, he would fall down flat on the floor and worship God. Whatever he was told to do, he did it for the glory of God. He testified, “I wouldn’t as much as pick up a straw from the floor, but I did it for the glory of God.
A.W. Tozer (The Crucified Life: How To Live Out A Deeper Christian Experience)
The team must consist of three sorts of specialists, he says. Otherwise the revolution, whether in politics or the arts or the sciences or whatever, is sure to fail. The rarest of these specialists, he says, is an authentic genius - a person capable of having seemingly good ideas not in in general circulation. "A genius working alone," he says, "is invariably ignored as a lunatic." The second sort of specialist is a lot easier to find; a highly intelligent citizen in good standing in his or her community, who understands and admires the fresh ideas of the genius, and who testifies that the genius is far from mad. "A person like this working alone," says Slazinger, "can only yearn loud for changes, but fail to say what their shaped should be." The third sort of specialist is a person who can explain everything, no matter how complicated, to the satisfaction of most people, no matter how stupid or pigheaded they may be. "He will say almost anything in order to be interesting and exciting," says Slazinger. "Working alone, depending solely on his own shallow ideas, he would be regarded as being as full of shit as a Christmas turkey.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Bluebeard)
How many planets are there in the universe with people on them? We don’t know, but we are not alone in the universe! God is not the God of only one planet! I testify that Jesus is truly the Lord of the universe, “that by [Christ], and through him, and of him, the worlds are and were created, and the inhabitants thereof are begotten sons and daughters unto God" D&C 76:24
Neal A. Maxwell
It is always as it was between Achilles and Homer: one person has the experience, the sensation, the other describes it. A real writer only gives words to the affects and experiences of others; he is an artist in divining a great deal from the little that he has felt. Artist are by no means people of great passion, but they frequently present themselves as such, unconsciously sensing that others give greater credence to the passions they portray if the artist's own life testifies to his experience in this area. We need only let ourselves go, not control ourselves, give free play to our wrath or our desire, and the whole world immediately cries: how passionate he is! But there really is something significant in a deeply gnawing passion that consumes and often swallows up an individual: whoever experiences this surely does not describe it in dramas, music, or novels. Artists are frequently unbridled individuals, insofar, that is, as they are not artists: but that is something different.
Friedrich Nietzsche (Human, All Too Human: A Book for Free Spirits)
I returned to the news to see Kavanaugh testifying. Exasperated, sniffling, snarky, sarcastic, inflamed with glistening eyes. When Senator Amy Klobuchar asked if he'd ever drunk enough to not remember, he said, 'You're asking about blackout, I don't know, have you? I'm curious if you have.' I had been asked the exact same question. I had sat with restraint, never raised my voice, never retaliated. I wondered why a man, who was about to sit on the highest court of the land, could not maintain his demeanor, could only spit back, embittered by the unfairness of it all.
Chanel Miller (Know My Name)
- The Azan story - The five daily ritual prayers were regularly performed in congregation, and when the time for each prayer came the people would assemble at the site where the Mosque was being built. Everyone judged of the time by the position of the sun in the sky, or by the first signs of its light on the eastern horizon or by the dimming of its glow in the west after sunset; but opinions could differ, and the Prophet felt the need for a means of summoning the people to prayer when the right time had come. At first he thought of appointing a man to blow a horn like that of the Jews, but later he decided on a wooden clapper, ndqiis, such as the Oriental Christians used at that time, and two pieces of wood were fashioned together for that purpose. But they were never destined to be used; for one night a man of Khazraj, 'Abd Allah ibn Zayd, who had been at the Second 'Aqabah, had a dream whieh the next day he recounted to the Prophet: "There passed by me a man wearing two green garments and he carried in his hand a ndqiis, so I said unto him: "0 slave of God, wilt thou sell me that naqusi" "What wilt thou do with it?" he said. "We will summon the people to prayer with it," I answered. "Shall I not show thee a better way?" he said. "What way is that?" I asked, and he answered: "That thou shouldst say: God is most Great, Alldhu Akbar." The man in green repeated this magnification four times, then each of the following twice: I testify that there is no god but God; I testify that Muhammad is the messenger of God; come unto the prayer; come unto salvation; God is most Great; and then once again there is no god but God. The Prophet said that this was a true vision, and he told him to go to Bilal, who had an excellent voice, and teach him the words exactly as he had heard them in his sleep. The highest house in the neighbourhood of the Mosque belonged to a woman of the clan of Najjar, and Bilal would come there before every dawn and would sit on the roof waiting for the daybreak. When he saw the first faint light in the east he would stretch out his arms and say in supplication: "0 God I praise Thee, and I ask Thy Help for Quraysh, that they may accept Thy religion." Then he would stand and utter the call to prayer.
Martin Lings (Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources)
Likewise, civilizations have throughout history marched blindly toward disaster, because humans are wired to believe that tomorrow will be much like today — it is unnatural for us to think that this way of life, this present moment, this order of things is not stable and permanent. Across the world today, our actions testify to our belief that we can go on like this forever, burning oil, poisoning the seas, killing off other species, pumping carbon into the air, ignoring the ominous silence of our coal mine canaries in favor of the unending robotic tweets of our new digital imaginarium. Yet the reality of global climate change is going to keep intruding on our fantasies of perpetual growth, permanent innovation and endless energy, just as the reality of mortality shocks our casual faith in permanence.
Roy Scranton (Learning to Die in the Anthropocene: Reflections on the End of a Civilization)
Christianity, Islam and Judaism, the dominant faiths in our culture, were devised to guide people living in very different circumstances to our own – put simply, deserts. How do the teachings of Christ or Abraham or Muhammad help us in the modern, post-industrial, secular world? Not to say these stories are totally obsolete; there’s some terrific advice in all of them. Primarily, though, they have become tools for oppression, segregation and conflict. The aspects of these ideologies that testify against oppression, segregation and conflict, which would seem to be the most vital bits, are consistently ignored.
Russell Brand (Revolution)
I was very timid, and bound as with chains in a man-fearing spirit. When I arose to testify I trembled like a leaf, and began to make excuses - O God, send someone else! Then the Lord in a vision caused me to see the bottomless pit open in all its horror and woe. There was weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth. It was surrounded by a great multitude of people who seemed unconscious of their danger, and without a moments warning they would tumble into this awful place. I was above the people on a narrow plank-walk, which wound up toward heaven; and I was exhorting and pleading with the people to come upon the plank and escape that awful place. Several started. There was a beautiful bright light above me, and I was encouraging them to follow that light and they would go straight to heaven. "In all these trials God was preparing me and opening the way for the great battle against the enemy of souls and now the great desire of my heart was to work for Jesus. I longed to win a star for the Savior's crown.
Maria Woodworth-Etter
If Mohammed had been a false prophet. there is no reason why Christ should not have spoken of him as he spoke of Antichrist but if Mohammed is a true Prophet the passages referring to the Paraclete must inevitably concern him - not exclusively but eminently - for it is inconceivable that Christ, when speaking of the future, should have passed over in silence a manifestation of such magnitude. The same reasoning excludes a priori the possibility that Christ. when making his predictions, intended to include Mohammed under the general denomination of'' false prophets", for in the history of our era Mohammed is in no sense a typical example among others of the same kind, but on the contrary, a unique and incomparable apparition(1). If he had been one of the false prophets announced by Christ he would have been followed by others and there would exist in our day a multitude of false religions subsequent to Christ and comparable in importance and extension to Islam. The spirituality to be found within Islam from its origins up to our days is an incontestable fact. and "by their fruits ye shall know them." Moreover, it will be recalled that the Prophet in his doctrine has testified to the second coming of Christ without attributing to himself any glory. unless it be that of being the last Prophet of the cycle and history proves that he spoke the truth, no comparable manifestation having followed after him.
Frithjof Schuon (The Transcendent Unity of Religions)
The woods do that to you, they always look familiar, long lost, like the face of a long-dead relative, like an old dream, like a piece of forgotten song drifting across the water, most of all like golden eternities of past childhood or past manhood and all the living and the dying and the heartbreak that went on a million years ago and the clouds as they pass overhead seem to testify(by their own lonesome familiarity) to this feeling. Taip būna miškuose, jie visada atrodo pažįstami, kadai prarasti, išblukę lyg seniai mirusio giminaičio veidas, tartum sena svajonė, tarsi nuotrupa pamirštos dainos, plaukiančios virš vandens, o labiau už viską - tarsi auksinės praėjusios vaikystės amžinybės ar preėjusios brandos, ir visa, kas gyva, visa, kas mirę, visa širdgėla, ištikusi prieš milijoną metų, ir debesys, plaukiantys tau virš galvos, liudija savo vienišu artimumu šį jausmą.
Jack Kerouac (The Dharma Bums)
The shepherds were invited to come and see. They saw. They trembled. They testified. They rejoiced. They saw Him wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger, the Prince of Peace.... "At this Christmas season I extend to you the gift of determination to come and see... "A young man in deep trouble and despair said to me recently, 'It's all right for others to have a merry Christmas, but not me. It's no use. It's too late.' "...We can stay away and complain. We can stay away and nurse our sorrows. We can stay away and pity ourselves. We can stay away and find fault. We can stay away and become bitter. "Or we can come and see! We can come and see and know!
Marvin J. Ashton
Everything is melting in nature. We think we see objects, but our eyes are slow and partial. Nature is blooming and withering in long puffy respirations, rising and falling in oceanic wave-motion. A mind that opened itself fully to nature without sentimental preconception would be glutted by nature’s coarse materialism, its relentless superfluity. An apple tree laden with fruit: how peaceful, how picturesque. But remove the rosy filter of humanism from our gaze and look again. See nature spuming and frothing, its mad spermatic bubbles endlessly spilling out and smashing in that inhuman round of waste, rot, and carnage. From the jammed glassy cells of sea roe to the feathery spores poured into the air from bursting green pods, nature is a festering hornet’s nest of aggression and overkill. This is the chthonian black magic with which we are infected as sexual beings; this is the daemonic identity that Christianity so inadequately defines as original sin and thinks it can cleanse us of. Procreative woman is the most troublesome obstacle to Christianity’s claim to catholicity, testified by its wishful doctrines of Immaculate Conception and Virgin Birth. The procreativeness of chthonian nature is an obstacle to all of western metaphysics and to each man in his quest for identity against his mother. Nature is the seething excess of being.
Camille Paglia (Sexual Personae: Art and Decadence from Nefertiti to Emily Dickinson (Yale Nota Bene))
(Response to King Erik XIV of Sweden's proposal of marriage:) "[W]hile we perceive ... the zeal and love of your mind towards us is not diminished, yet in part we are grieved that we cannot gratify your Serene Highness with the same kind of affection. And that indeed does not happen because we doubt in any way of your love and honour, but, as often we have testified both in words and writing, that we have never yet conceived a feeling of that kind of affection towards anyone. We therefore beg your Serene Highness again and again that you be pleased to set a limit to your love, that it advance not beyond the laws of friendship for the present nor disregard them in the future. ... We certainly think that if God ever direct our hearts to consideration of marriage we shall never accept or choose any absent husband how powerful and wealthy a Prince soever. But that we are not to give you an answer until we have seen your person is so far from the thing itself that we never even considered such a thing. I have always given both to your brother ... and also to your ambassador likewise the same answer with scarcely any variation of the words, that we do not conceive in our heart to take a husband but highly commend this single life, and hope that your Serene Highness will no longer spend time in waiting for us.
Elizabeth I (Collected Works)
Thank you for inviting me here today " I said my voice sounding nothing like me. "I'm here to testify about things I've seen and experienced myself. I'm here because the human race has become more powerful than ever. We've gone to the moon. Our crops resist diseases and pests. We can stop and restart a human heart. And we've harvested vast amounts of energy for everything from night-lights to enormous super-jets. We've even created new kinds of people, like me. "But everything mankind" - I frowned - "personkind has accomplished has had a price. One that we're all gonna have to pay." I heard coughing and shifting in the audience. I looked down at my notes and all the little black words blurred together on the page. I just could not get through this. I put the speech down picked up the microphone and came out from behind the podium. "Look " I said. "There's a lot of official stuff I could quote and put up on the screen with PowerPoint. But what you need to know what the world needs to know is that we're really destroying the earth in a bigger and more catastrophic was than anyone has ever imagined. "I mean I've seen a lot of the world the only world we have. There are so many awesome beautiful tings in it. Waterfalls and mountains thermal pools surrounded by sand like white sugar. Field and field of wildflowers. Places where the ocean crashes up against a mountainside like it's done for hundreds of thousands of years. "I've also seen concrete cities with hardly any green. And rivers whose pretty rainbow surfaces came from an oil leak upstream. Animals are becoming extinct right now in my lifetime. Just recently I went through one of the worst hurricanes ever recorded. It was a whole lot worse because of huge worldwide climatic changes caused by... us. We the people." .... "A more perfect union While huge corporations do whatever they want to whoever they want and other people live in subway tunnels Where's the justice of that Kids right here in America go to be hungry every night while other people get four-hundred-dollar haircuts. Promote the general welfare Where's the General welfare in strip-mining toxic pesticides industrial solvents being dumped into rivers killing everything Domestic Tranquility Ever sleep in a forest that's being clear-cut You'd be hearing chain saws in your head for weeks. The blessings of liberty Yes. I'm using one of the blessings of liberty right now my freedom of speech to tell you guys who make the laws that the very ground you stand on the house you live in the children you tuck in at night are all in immediate catastrophic danger.
James Patterson (The Final Warning (Maximum Ride, #4))
As pertaining to this perfect atonement, wrought by the shedding of the blood of God—I testify that it took place in Gethsemane and at Golgotha, and as pertaining to Jesus Christ, I testify that he is the Son of the Living God and was crucified for the sins of the world. He is our Lord, our God, and our King. This I know of myself independent of any other person. I am one of his witnesses, and in a coming day I shall feel the nail marks in his hands and in his feet and shall wet his feet with my tears. But I shall not know any better then than I know now that he is God’s Almighty Son, that he is our Savior and Redeemer, and that salvation comes in and through his atoning blood and in no other way. God grant that all of us may walk in the light as God our Father is in the light so that, according to the promises, the blood of Jesus Christ his Son will cleanse us from all sin.
Bruce R. McConkie
Under conditions of a truly human existence, the difference between succumbing to disease at the age of ten, thirty, fifty, or seventy, and dying a "natural" death after a fulfilled life, may well be a difference worth fighting for with all instinctual energy. Not those who die, but those who die before they must and want to die, those who die in agony and pain, are the great indictment against civilization. They also testify to the unredeemable guilt of mankind. Their death arouses the painful awareness that it was unnecessary, that it could be otherwise. It takes all the institutions and values of a repressive order to pacify the bad conscience of this guilt. Once again, the deep connection between the death instinct and the sense of guilt becomes apparent. The silent "professional agreement" with the fact of death and disease is perhaps one of the most widespread expressions of the death instinct -- or, rather, of its social usefulness. In a repressive civilization, death itself becomes an instrument of repression. Whether death is feared as constant threat, or glorified as supreme sacrifice, or accepted as fate, the education for consent to death introduces an element of surrender into life from the beginning -- surrender and submission. It stifles "utopian" efforts. The powers that be have a deep affinity to death; death is a token of unfreedom, of defeat. Theology and philosophy today compete with each other in celebrating death as an existential category: perverting a biological fact into an ontological essence, they bestow transcendental blessing on the guilt of mankind which they help to perpetuate -- they betray the promise of utopia.
Herbert Marcuse (Eros and Civilization: A Philosophical Inquiry into Freud)
The real bible is not the work of inspired men, nor prophets, nor apostles, nor evangelists, nor of Christs. Every man who finds a fact, adds, as it were, a word to this great book. It is not attested by prophecy, by miracles or signs. It makes no appeal to faith, to ignorance, to credulity or fear. It has no punishment for unbelief, and no reward for hypocrisy. It appeals to man in the name of demonstration. It has nothing to conceal. It has no fear of being read, of being contradicted, of being investigated and understood. It does not pretend to be holy, or sacred; it simply claims to be true. It challenges the scrutiny of all, and implores every reader to verify every line for himself. It is incapable of being blasphemed. This book appeals to all the surroundings of man. Each thing that exists testifies of its perfection. The earth, with its forests and plains, its rocks and seas; with its every wave and cloud; with its every leaf and bud and flower, confirms its every word, and the solemn stars, shining in the infinite abysses, are the eternal witnesses of its truth.
Robert G. Ingersoll
The wicked know that if the ill they do be of sufficient horror that men will not speak against it. That men have just enough stomach for small evils and only these will they oppose. He said that true evil has power to sober the smalldoer against his own deeds and in the contemplation of that evil he may even find the path of righteousness which has been foreign to his feet and may have no power but to go upon it. Even this man may be appalled at what is revealed to him and seek some order to stand against it. Yet in all of this there are two things which perhaps he will not know. He will not know that while the order which the righteous seek is never righteousness itself but is only order, the disorder of evil is in fact the thing itself. Nor will he know that while the righteous are hampered at every turn by their ignorance of evil to the evil all is plain, light and dark alike. This man of which we speak will seek to impose order and lineage upon things which rightly have none. He will call upon the world itself to testify as to the truth of what are in fact but his desires. In his final incarnation he may seek to indemnify his words with blood for by now he will have discovered that words pale and lose their savor while pain is always new.
Cormac McCarthy (The Crossing (The Border Trilogy, #2))
It was as easy as breathing to go and have tea near the place where Jane Austen had so wittily scribbled and so painfully died. One of the things that causes some critics to marvel at Miss Austen is the laconic way in which, as a daughter of the epoch that saw the Napoleonic Wars, she contrives like a Greek dramatist to keep it off the stage while she concentrates on the human factor. I think this comes close to affectation on the part of some of her admirers. Captain Frederick Wentworth in Persuasion, for example, is partly of interest to the female sex because of the 'prize' loot he has extracted from his encounters with Bonaparte's navy. Still, as one born after Hiroshima I can testify that a small Hampshire township, however large the number of names of the fallen on its village-green war memorial, is more than a world away from any unpleasantness on the European mainland or the high or narrow seas that lie between. (I used to love the detail that Hampshire's 'New Forest' is so called because it was only planted for the hunt in the late eleventh century.) I remember watching with my father and brother through the fence of Stanstead House, the Sussex mansion of the Earl of Bessborough, one evening in the early 1960s, and seeing an immense golden meadow carpeted entirely by grazing rabbits. I'll never keep that quiet, or be that still, again. This was around the time of countrywide protest against the introduction of a horrible laboratory-confected disease, named 'myxomatosis,' into the warrens of old England to keep down the number of nibbling rodents. Richard Adams's lapine masterpiece Watership Down is the remarkable work that it is, not merely because it evokes the world of hedgerows and chalk-downs and streams and spinneys better than anything since The Wind in the Willows, but because it is only really possible to imagine gassing and massacre and organized cruelty on this ancient and green and gently rounded landscape if it is organized and carried out against herbivores.
Christopher Hitchens (Hitch 22: A Memoir)
Is it necessary that Heaven should borrow its light from the glare of Hell? Infinite punishment is infinite cruelty, endless injustice, immortal meanness. To worship an eternal gaoler hardens, debases, and pollutes even the vilest soul. While there is one sad and breaking heart in the universe, no good being can be perfectly happy. Against the heartlessness of the Christian religion every grand and tender soul should enter solemn protest. The God of Hell should be held in loathing, contempt and scorn. A God who threatens eternal pain should be hated, not loved – cursed, not worshiped. A heaven presided over by such a God must be below the lowest hell. I want no part in any heaven in which the saved, the ransomed and redeemed will drown with shouts of joy the cries and sobs of hell – in which happiness will forget misery, where the tears of the lost only increase laughter and double bliss. The idea of hell was born of ignorance, brutality, fear cowardice, and revenge. This idea testifies that our remote ancestors were the lowest beasts. Only from dens, lairs, and caves, only from mouths filled with cruel fangs, only from hearts of fear and hatred, only from the conscience of hunger and lust, only from the lowest and most debased could come this cruel, heartless and bestial of all dogmas.
Robert G. Ingersoll
Good sense is, of all things among men, the most equally distributed; for every one thinks himself so abundantly provided with it, that those even who are the most difficult to satisfy in everything else, do not usually desire a larger measure of this quality than they already possess. And in this it is not likely that all are mistaken the conviction is rather to be held as testifying that the power of judging aright and of distinguishing truth from error, which is properly what is called good sense or reason, is by nature equal in all men; and that the diversity of our opinions, consequently, does not arise from some being endowed with a larger share of reason than others, but solely from this, that we conduct our thoughts along different ways, and do not fix our attention on the same objects. For to be possessed of a vigorous mind is not enough; the prime requisite is rightly to apply it. The greatest minds, as they are capable of the highest excellences, are open likewise to the greatest aberrations; and those who travel very slowly may yet make far greater progress, provided they keep always to the straight road, than those who, while they run, forsake it.
René Descartes (Discourse on Method and Meditations on First Philosophy)
Yet some would say, why women's history at all? Surely men and women have always shared a world, and suffered together all its rights and wrongs? It is a common belief that whatever the situation, both sexes faced it alike. But the male peasant, however cruelly oppressed, always had the right to beat his wife. The black slave had to labor for the white master by day, but he did not have to service him by night as well. This grim pattern continues to this day, with women bearing an extra ration of pain and misery whatever the circumstances, as the sufferings of the women of war-torn Eastern Europe will testify. While their men fought and died, wholesale and systematic rape—often accompanied by the same torture and death that the men suffered— was a fate only women had to endure. Women's history springs from moments of recognition such as this, and the awareness of the difference is still very new. Only in our time have historians begun to look at the historical experience of men and women separately, and to acknowledge that for most of our human past, women's interests have been opposed to those of men. Women's interests have been opposed by them, too: men have not willingly extended to women the rights and freedoms they have claimed for themselves. As a result, historical advances have tended to be "men only" affairs. When history concentrates solely on one half of the human race, any alternative truth or reality is lost. Men dominate history because they write it, and their accounts of active, brave, clever or aggressive females constantly tend to sentimentalize, to mythologize or to pull women back to some perceived "norm." As a result, much of the so-called historical record is simply untrue.
Rosalind Miles (Who Cooked the Last Supper: The Women's History of the World)
Her sensations on the discovery made her perfectly speechless. She could not even thank him. She could only hang over little Charles, with most disordered feelings. His kindness in stepping forward to her relief – the manner— the silence in which it had passed – the little particulars of the circumstance – with the conviction soon forced on her by the noise he was studiously making with the child, that he meant to avoid hearing her thanks, and rather sought to testify that her conversation was the last of his wants, produced such a confusion of varying, but very painful agitation, as she could not recover from, till enabled by the entrance of Mary and the Miss Musgroves to make over her little patience to their cares, and leave the room. She could not stay. It might have been an opportunity of watching the loves and jealousies of the four; they were now all together, but she could stay for none of it. It was evident that Charles Hayter was not well inclined towards Captain Wentworth. She had a strong impression of his having said, in a vext tone of voice, after Captain Wentworth’s interference, ‘You ought to have minded me, Walter; I told you not to teaze your aunt;’ and could comprehend his regretting that Captain Wentworth should do what he ought to have done himself. But neither Charles Hayter’s feelings, nor any body’s feelings, could interest her, till she had a little better arranged her own. She was ashamed of herself, quite ashamed of being so nervous, so overcome by such a trifle; but so it was; and it required a long application of solitude and reflection to recover her.
Jane Austen (Persuasion)