…the world did not have to be
beautiful to work.
But it is.
What does that mean?
~Mary Oliver, in an NPR Interview – A Thousand Mornings
“At one time I thought the most important thing was talent. I think now that — the young man or the young woman must possess or teach himself, train himself, in infinite patience, which is to try and to try and to try until it comes right. He must train himself in ruthless intolerance. That is, to throw away anything that is false no matter how much he might love that page or that paragraph. The most important thing is insight, that is … curiosity to wonder, to mull, and to muse why it is that man does what he does. And if you have that, then I don’t think the talent makes much difference, whether you’ve got that or not.”
~ William Faulkner, Press conference, University of Virginia, May 20, 1957
Source: Stronger Than Yesterday
Source: Shoebill from Head Like An Orange
“We say to the confused,
as if knowing yourself was not the fifth and most difficult of human arithmetical operations,
we say to the apathetic,
Where there’s a will, there’s a way,
as if the brute realities of the world did not amuse themselves each day by turning that phrase on its head,
we say to the indecisive,
Begin at the beginning,
as if beginning were the clearly visible point of a loosely wound thread and all we had to do was to keep pulling until we reached the other end, and as if, between the former and the latter, we had held in our hands a smooth, continuous thread with no knots to untie, no snarls to untangle, a complete impossibility in the life of a skein, or indeed, if we may be permitted one more stock phrase, in the skein of life.”
For the New Year—I still live, I still think; I must still live, for I must still think. Sum, ergo cogito: cogito, ergo sum. To-day everyone takes the liberty of expressing his wish and his favorite thought: well, I also mean to tell what I have wished for myself today, and what thought first crossed my mind this year,—a thought which ought to be the basis, the pledge and the sweetening of all my future life! I want more and more to perceive the necessary characters in things as the beautiful:—I shall thus be one of those who beautify things. Amor fati: let that henceforth be my love! I do not want to wage war with the ugly. I do not want to accuse, I do not want even to accuse the accusers. Looking aside, let that be my sole negation! And all in all, to sum up: I wish to be at any time hereafter only a yea-sayer!
~ Friedrich Nietzsche, January of 1882, Sanctus Januarius in The Gay Science
“It can never be satisfied, the mind, never.” Wallace Stevens wrote that, and in the long run he was right. The mind wants to live forever, or to learn a very good reason why not. The mind wants the world to return its love, or its awareness; the mind wants to know all the world, and all eternity, and God. The mind’s sidekick, however, will settle for two eggs over easy. The dear, stupid body is as easily satisfied as a spaniel. And, incredibly, the simple spaniel can lure the brawling mind to its dish. It is everlastingly funny that the proud, metaphysically ambitious, clamoring mind will hush if you give it an egg.
~ Annie Dillard, Total Eclipse. Teaching a Stone to Talk
“If you follow the paintbrush with your eyes while not moving your head, it forces you to use emdr which is a therapeutic technique to calm anxiety/panic. Watching fish swim causes the same effect.”
Source: Disintegrated Insanity