Sunday, November 23, 2008

Ponderings

School learning has its merits, but I never put much effort in to education beyond the basics I needed to get along in life. I was bored in school. But my mom, who was a very wise woman even tho she never graduated from high school, once told me that if I had a good book at hand I'd never be lonely. Wiser words were never spoken. She was one of the most well-read people I've ever known. I have lived my life the same way, and my daughter is following in our footsteps as well. When I've just finished a book that has taught me something invaluable, that has touched my heart or made my soul sing...I close the covers and go away feeling my life has been enriched.
I read the following wise words and spent a lot of time pondering over them as I read them. My favorite is in bold print.
Do you see any here that resonate in your heart?
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Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be. ~Thomas à Kempis, Imitation of Christ, c.1420

You've got a lot of choices. If getting out of bed in the morning is a chore and you're not smiling on a regular basis, try another choice. ~Steven D. Woodhull

What saves a man is to take a step. Then another step. It is always the same step, but you have to take it. ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Wind, Sand and Stars, 1939, translated from French by Lewis Galantière

Don't wait for the Last Judgment. It happens every day. ~Albert Camus, The Fall, 1956

Good for the body is the work of the body, and good for the soul is the work of the soul, and good for either is the work of the other. ~Henry David Thoreau

Remember, if you’re headed in the wrong direction, God allows U-turns! ~Allison Gappa Bottke

Anyone can carry his burden, however hard, until nightfall. Anyone can do his work, however hard, for one day. Anyone can live sweetly, patiently, lovingly, purely, till the sun goes down. And this is all life really means. ~Robert Louis Stevenson

See everything; overlook a great deal; correct a little. ~Pope John XXIII

Enjoy when you can, and endure when you must. ~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

You will turn over many a futile new leaf till you learn we must all write on scratched-out pages. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1960

Now that it's all over, what did you really do yesterday that's worth mentioning? ~Coleman Cox

Laziness will cause you pain. ~Slogan on T-shirt worn at the Vee Arnis Jitsu School of Self-Defense

If you surrender to the wind, you can ride it. ~Toni Morrison
Never miss an opportunity to make others happy, even if you have to leave them alone in order to do it. ~Author Unknown

Sometimes it's more important to be human, than to have good taste. ~Brecht

Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. ~Victor Hugo

We have to live today by what truth we can get today and be ready tomorrow to call it falsehood. ~William James

You can tell more about a person by what he says about others than you can by what others say about him. ~Leo Aikman

Seek freedom and become captive of your desires. Seek discipline and find your liberty. ~Frank Herbert, Dune Chronicles

The first and greatest victory is to conquer yourself; to be conquered by yourself is of all things most shameful and vile. ~Plato

Pick battles big enough to matter, small enough to win. ~Jonathan Kozel

Tough and funny and a little bit kind: that is as near to perfection as a human being can be. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook, 1966

God grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know it's me. ~Author unknown, variation of an excerpt from "The Serenity Prayer" by Reinhold Neibuhr

People cannot go wrong, if you don't let them. They cannot go right, unless you let them. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827

Excess on occasion is exhilirating. It prevents moderation from acquiring the deadening effect of a habit. ~W. Somerset Maugham, The Summing Up, 1938

The vow that binds too strictly snaps itself. ~Alfred Lord Tennyson, "The Last Tournament," Idylls of the King

I make the most of all that comes and the least of all that goes. ~Sara Teasdale, "The Philosopher"Poems That Touch the Heart, edited by A.L. Alexander

Every one should keep a mental wastepaper basket and the older he grows the more things he will consign to it - torn up to irrecoverable tatters. ~Samuel Butler

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are. ~Theodore Roosevelt

Whatever we worship, short of God, is sure to be our undoing. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1960

Be pleasant until ten o'clock in the morning and the rest of the day will take care of itself. ~Elbert Hubbard

The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra. ~Jimmy Johnson

What a strange narrowness of mind now is that, to think the things we have not known are better than the things we have known. ~Samuel Johnson

To sensible men, every day is a day of reckoning. ~John W. Gardner

There is a time for departure even when there's no certain place to go. ~Tennessee Williams (Thomas Lanier)

Face what you think you believe and you will be surprised. ~William Hale White

Grown-ups love figures. When you tell them that you have made a new friend, they never ask you any questions about essential matters. They never say to you, "What does his voice sound like? What games does he love best? Does he collect butterflies?" Instead, they demand: "How old is he? How many brothers has he? How much does he weigh? How much money does his father make?" Only from these figures do they think they have learned anything about him. ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince, 1943, translated from French

Just remember, there's a right way and a wrong way to do everything and the wrong way is to keep trying to make everybody else do it the right way. ~M*A*S*H, Colonel Potter

Don't look where you fall, but where you slipped. ~African Proverb

One can enjoy a wood fire worthily only when he warms his thoughts by it as well as his hands and feet. ~Odell Shepherd

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