Sunday, February 16, 2020
...................................................................and life its ownself.
We rushed to judgement, but with the benefit of hindsight, it honestly seems fine. It’s possible that people on Twitter may have used the platform for low-stakes performative outrage instead of making an effort to be reasonable about an otherwise-benign comment.
Saturday, February 15, 2020
. . . recognize a sadly persistent fact: the concepts contained in words like "freedom," "justice," "democracy" are not common concepts; on the contrary, they are rare. People are not born knowing what these are. It takes enormous and, above all, individual effort to arrive at the respect for other people that these words imply.
-James Baldwin, from his essay The Crusade of Indignation as found in The Price Of The Ticket: Collected Nonfiction: 1948-1985
Most people never feel secure because they are always worried that they will either lose their job, lose the money they already have, lose their spouse, lose their health, and so on. The only true security in life comes from knowing that every single day you are improving yourself in some way, that you are increasing the caliber of who you are and that you are valuable to your company, your friends, and your family. I don't worry about maintaining the quality of of my life, because every day I work on improving it. I constantly strive to learn and to make new and more powerful distinctions about ways to add value to other people's lives. This gives me a sense of certainty that I can always learn, that I can always expand, that I can always grow.
-Anthony Robbins, Awaken The Giant Within
This freedom to doubt is an important matter in the sciences and, I believe, in other fields. It was born of a struggle. It was a struggle to be permitted to doubt, to be unsure. And I do not want us to forget the importance of the struggle and, by default, to let the thing fall away. I feel a responsibility as a scientist who knows the great value of a satisfactory philosophy of ignorance, and the progress made possible by such a philosophy, progress which is the fruit of freedom of thought. I feel a responsibility to proclaim the value of this freedom and to teach that doubt is not to be feared, but that it is to be welcomed as the possibility of a new potential for human beings. If you know that you are not sure, you have a chance to improve the situation. I want to demand this freedom for future generations.
-Richard P. Feynman, The Meaning of It All: Thoughts of a Citizen-Scientist
Monday, February 10, 2020
. . . cooperation begins with conversation: asking intelligent and open-ended questions; listening; respecting others' opinions; and understanding people's real concerns, as well as what opportunities they're most excited about and what strengths they have to contribute.
-Dan Sullivan/Catherine Nomura: The Laws of Lifetime Growth: Always Make Your Future Bigger Than Your Past
All scientific knowledge is uncertain. This experience with doubt and uncertainty is important. I believe that it is of very great value, and one that extends beyond the sciences. I believe that to solve any problem that has never been solved before, you have to leave the door to the unknown open. You have to permit the possibility that you do not have it exactly right. Otherwise, if you have made up your mind already, you might not solve it.
-Richard P. Feynman, The Meaning Of It All: Thoughts of a Citizen-Scientist
Sunday, February 9, 2020
Saturday, February 8, 2020
Faithful readers will understand that my musical tastes evolved "fifty years ago." The expression, "no really good music has been written since the Beatles broke up" has been heard a time or two around this house. Acknowledging that's not truly true, escaping from comfortable, well-worn ruts often requires some assistance. Fortunately, Scott Blitstein is hard at work providing such assistance. If you are not following his latest effort at opening hearts and minds—well, you should.
...............James Carville, but he raises a good point here:
The purpose of a political party is to acquire power. All right? Without power, nothing matters.
What’s the answer?
By framing, repeating, and delivering a coherent, meaningful message that is relevant to people’s lives and having the political skill not to be sucked into every rabbit hole that somebody puts in front of you.
-as extracted from this interview detailing his concerns about the coming 2020 election
Always you have been told that work is a curse and labour a misfortune.
But I say to you that when you work you fulfil a part of earth's furthest dream, assigned to you when the dream was born,
And in keeping yourself with labour you are in truth loving life,
And to love life through labour is to be intimate with life's inmost secret.
-Kahlil Gibran, from his discourse on Work in The Prophet
When we see God's grace operate in the lives of people who we feel don't deserve it, we have a choice. Either we can complain and feel sorry for ourselves, or we can be thankful that the God of such goodness is the One we love and serve. Comparison kills because it always leaves us wanting more, but thankfulness brings life.
-Zig Ziglar and Ike Reighard, The One Year Daily Insights
I have observed the power of the watermelon seed. It has the power to draw from the ground and through itself 200,000 times its weight.
When you can tell me how it takes this material from the ground and out of its colors an outside surface beyond the imitation of art, and then forms inside of it a white rind and within that again a red heart, thickly inlaid with black seeds, each one of which in turn is capable of drawing through itself 200,000 times its weight —when you can explain to me the mystery of a watermelon, you can ask me to explain the mystery of God.
-attributed to William Jennings Bryan
F. Scott Fitzgerald, a contemporary of William Jennings Bryan, described this paradox. "The test of a first rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function. One should, for example, be able to see that things are hopeless and yet be determined to make them better." It seems to me that the lesson in both Bryan's and Fitzgerald's comments is to simultaneously choose life while serenely knowing that the mysterious future pull is doing exactly what it is supposed to be doing as our bodies age and die. Thus we are in charge and we are not in charge, both at the same time, and it is all right for these two opposites to coexist.
-Wayne Dyer, from Wisdom of the Ages