“I hope people take away the fact that it is possible to have a different sort of life.”
— Jane Goodall
“If we understood ourselves better, we would damage ourselves less.”
— James Baldwin
“your life is your life
don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
you can’t beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
— Charles Bukowski
“Although I am typically a loner in daily life, my consciousness of belonging to the invisible community of those whose strive for truth, beauty and justice has preserved me from feeling isolated.”
— Albert Einstein
I feel this quote so much. The pandemic has made me find my introvert and helped me deeply embrace alone time.
“I’ll tell you one thing for sure: once you get to the point where you’re actually doing things for truth’s sake, then nobody can ever touch you again because you’re harmonizing with a greater power.”
— George Harrison
“Whenever we touch nature we get clean. People who have got dirty through too much civilization take a walk in the woods, or a bath in the sea. Entering the unconscious, entering yourself through dreams, is touching nature from the inside and this is the same thing, things are put right again.”
— Carl Jung
“Don’t just aspire to make a living, aspire to make a difference”. — Denzel Washington
“Ask yourself honestly: are you looking for a steady, predictable life? Is this what you want? If so, you must realize that the world cannot offer you this. Everything in the world is in the process of change. Nothing is steady. Nothing is predictable. Nothing will give you anything other than temporary security. Toughts come and go. Relationships begin and end. Bodies are born and pass away. This is all the world can offer you: impermanence, growth, change.”
— Paul Ferrini
From the book Love Without Conditions
“If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy,
don’t hesitate. Give in to it. There are plenty
of lives and whole towns destroyed or about
to be. We are not wise, and not very often
kind. And much can never be redeemed.
Still, life has some possibility left. Perhaps this
is its way of fighting back, that sometimes
something happens better than all the riches
or power in the world. It could be anything,
but very likely you notice it in the instant
when love begins. Anyway, that’s often the
case. Anyway, whatever it is, don’t be afraid
of its plenty. Joy is not made to be a crumb.”
– Mary Oliver
“Stop measuring days by degree of productivity, and start experiencing them by degree of presence.”
— Alan Watts
“Sister, there are people who went to sleep all over the world last night, poor and rich and white and black, but they will never wake again. Sister, those who expected to rise did not, their beds became their cooling boards, and their blankets became their winding sheets. And those dead folks would give anything, anything at all for just five minutes of this weather or ten minutes of that plowing that person was grumbling about. So you watch yourself about complaining, Sister. What you’re supposed to do when you don’t like a thing is change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. Don’t complain.”
— Maya Angelou
“When the accumulation of wealth is no longer of high social importance, there will be great changes in the code of morals. We shall be able to rid ourselves of many of the pseudo-moral principles which have hag-ridden us for two hundred years, by which we have exalted some of the most distasteful of human qualities into the position of the highest virtues. We shall be able to afford to dare to assess the money-motive at its true value. The love of money as a possession — as distinguished from the love of money as a means to the enjoyments and realities of life — will be recognized for what it is, a somewhat disgusting morbidity, one of those semi-criminal, semi-pathological propensities which one hands over with a shudder to the specialists in mental disease.”
― John Maynard Keynes
“Study the path of others to make your way easier and more abundant. Lean toward the whispers of your own heart, discover the universal truth, and follow its dictates… Release the need to hate, to harbor division, and the enticement of revenge. Release all bitterness. Hold only love, only peace in your heart, knowing that the battle of good to overcome evil is already won. Choose confrontation wisely, but when it is your time don’t be afraid to stand up, speak up, and speak out against injustice. And if you follow your truth down the road to peace and the affirmation of love, if you shine like a beacon for all to see, then the poetry of all the great dreamers and philosophers is yours to manifest in a nation, a world community, and a beloved community that is finally at peace with itself.”
— John Lewis
“Do not get lost in a sea of despair. Be hopeful, be optimistic. Our struggle is not the struggle of a day, a week, a month, or a year, it is the struggle of a lifetime. Never, ever be afraid to make some noise and get in good trouble, necessary trouble.”
– John Lewis
“You don’t get to pick your family of origin or the place you grow up. But you do get to choose your friends, and those choices say something about the kind of world you want for yourself. This is one of the many ways friendship is political. We’re not just talking about whether you have people in your life who voted for the opposite party or whether you’re carpooling to the protest march with your friends. We’re talking about small-p politics, or “the total complex of relations between people living in society,” as the dictionary puts it. White people can’t be surprised that white supremacists are marching in the streets if their own lives are racially segregated. The choices that each of us makes every day about who we include in our lives end up shaping the larger world we live in.”
There’s a Divide in Even the Closest Interracial Friendships Including ours, By Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman
The first thing you do is to forget that I’m black.
Second, you must never forget that I’m black.
You should be able to dig Aretha,
but don’t play her every time I come over.
And if you decide to play Beethoven — don’t tell me
his life story. They make us take music appreciation, too.
Eat soul food if you like it, but don’t expect me
to locate your restaurants
or cook it for you.
And if some Black person insults you,
mugs you, rapes your sister, rapes you,
rips your house or is just being an ass —
please, do not apologize to me
for wanting to do them bodily harm.
It makes me wonder if you’re foolish.
And even if you really believe Blacks are better lovers than
whites — don’t tell me. I start thinking of charging stud fees.
In other words — if you really want to be my friend — don’t
make a labor of it. I’m lazy. Remember.
“Of course I knew I was white, just like you do. I just didn’t consciously identify myself that way. Maybe it’s because it felt like it was unnecessary to acknowledge, or because it felt like the default, or because it felt embarrassing for reasons I could not yet articulate. But before that day, “white” was in the silent backdrop of how I defined myself, and then, the day I went viral, something shifted. I suddenly saw my own race as important, as having meaning, meaning that I had yet to fully understand.”
A Love Letter to All the Overwhelmed White People Who Are Trying, by Melissa DePino
you have always
carried with you
as you walk
by every corner
of the world
— David Whyte
I will not die an unlived life
I will not live in fear
of falling or catching fire.
I choose to inhabit my days,
to allow my living to open me,
to make me less afraid,
to loosen my heart
until it becomes a wing,
a torch, a promise.
I choose to risk my significance;
to live so that which came to me as seed
goes to the next as blossom
and that which came to me as blossom,
goes on as fruit.
— Dawna Markova
Call-outs make people fearful of being targeted. People avoid meaningful conversations when hypervigilant perfectionists point out apparent mistakes, feeding the cannibalistic maw of the cancel culture. Shaming people for when they “woke up” presupposes rigid political standards for acceptable discourse and enlists others to pile on. Sometimes it’s just ruthless hazing.
We can change this culture. Calling-in is simply a call-out done with love. Some corrections can be made privately. Others will necessarily be public, but done with respect. It is not tone policing, protecting white fragility or covering up abuse. It helps avoid the weaponization of suffering that prevents constructive healing.
Calling-in engages in debates with words and actions of healing and restoration, and without the self-indulgence of drama. And we can make productive choices about the terms of the debate: Conflicts about coalition-building, supporting candidates or policies are a routine and desirable feature of a pluralistic democracy.
I Think Call-Out Culture Is Toxic, by Loretta Ross
“If you think falling in love is only reserved for romantic relationships, then you’re missing out on so much.”
— Ayishat Akanbi
“Change your thinking, your interpretation of the world, change the way you see! To change the way you see is to change the world.”
— Yean-Yves Leloup
“Revolutionary love is a well-spring of care, an awakening to the inherent dignity and beauty of others and the earth, a quieting of the ego, a way of moving through the world in relationship, asking: ‘What is your story? What is at stake? What is my part in your flourishing?’ Loving others, even our opponents, in this way has the power to sustain political, social and moral transformation. This is how love changes the world.”
— Valarie Kaur