If you can approach the world’s complexities, both its glories and its horrors, with an attitude of humble curiosity, acknowledging that however deeply you have seen, you have only scratched the surface, you will find worlds within worlds, beauties you could not heretofore imagine, and your own mundane preoccupations will shrink to proper size, not all that important in the greater scheme of things.

From infancy on, we are all spies; the shame is not this but that the secrets to be discovered are so paltry and few.

November 26, 2014 John Updike , ,

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

The function of the university is not simply to teach bread-winning, or to furnish teachers for the public schools or to be a centre of polite society; it is, above all, to be the organ of that fine adjustment between real life and the growing knowledge of life, an adjustment which forms the secret of civilization.

I am naturally anti-slavery. If slavery is not wrong, nothing is wrong. I can not remember when I did not so think, and feel.

November 23, 2014 Abraham Lincoln

Why should we look for his errors when a brave man dies? Unless
we can learn from his experience, there is no need to look for weakness.
Rather, we should admire the courage and spirit in his life. What kind
of man would live where there is no daring? And is life so dear that we
should blame men for dying in adventure? Is there a better way to die?

Dissidents should be paid 13 months’ salary for a year, otherwise
our mindless unanimity will bring us to an even more hopeless state of
stagnation. It is especially important to encourage unorthodox thinking
when the situation is critical: At such moments every new word and fresh
thought is more precious than gold. Indeed, people must not be deprived
of the right to think their own thoughts.

There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune. Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries. On such a full sea are we now afloat. And we must take the current when it serves, or lose our ventures.

If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace.

November 19, 2014 Thomas Paine ,

In spite of illness, in spite even of the archenemy sorrow, one
can remain alive long past the usual date of disintegration if one is
unafraid of change, insatiable in intellectual curiosity, interested in
big things, and happy in small ways.

November 18, 2014 Edith Wharton

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