Monday, December 29, 2008
Mankind 20 We are both similar to and different from everyone else. "In each of us there is a little of all of us." Lichtenberg. 1764-99. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Mankind 21 What makes a man distinct is his control of his instincts. "What is peculiar in the life of a man consists not in his obedience, but in his opposition, to his instincts." Thoreau. 1850. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Mankind 22 Man believes he is free. "Man is a masterpiece of creation, if only because…[nothing] can prevent him from believing that he acts as a free being." Lichtenberg. 1764-99. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Mankind 23 There is a world of difference in the meaning of a smile and a laugh. "The world loved man when he smiled; the world became afraid of him when he laughed." Rabindranath Tagore. 1916. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Friday, December 26, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Man 308 The General: "Man had to destroy God in order to achieve Him, equal Him." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Man and god 273 "Man in fact created gods in his own likeness…." Frazer, The New Golden Bough.
Man’s view of women 227 Illness destroys the good looks of young women. Her brother on Marianne: "At her [Marianne’s] time of life, anything of an illness destroys the bloom forever!" Austen, Sense and Sensibility.
Man’s view of women 237 On the loss of a woman's good looks. Her brother on Marianne: "…one must allow that there is something very trying to a young woman who has been a beauty, in the loss of her personal attractions; you would not think it perhaps, but Marianne was remarkably handsome a few months ago; quite as handsome as Elinor—now you see it is all gone." Austen, Sense and Sensibility.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Man 227 "To become a man is an art." German. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Man 39 Man is destined to be a failure; all that remains of him is to be used by others. "Surely mortal man is a broomstick! ...till the axe of intemperance has lopped off his green boughs, and left him a withered trunk...raises a mighty dust where there was none before; sharing deeply all the while in the very same pollutions he pretends to sweep away...last days are spent in slavery to women...till, worn out to the stumps...he is either kicked out of doors, or made use of to kindle flames for others to warm themselves by. Jonathan Swift. “A Meditation upon a Broomstick.” 1701. Gross, ed. Essays.
Man 140 The General: "The natural role of twentieth-century man is anxiety." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Man 255 What is man? The General: "There’s that popular misconception of man as something between a brute and an angel; actually man is in transit between brute and God." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Monday, December 22, 2008
Magic 340 "…for it is a familiar tenet of magic that you can produce any desired effect by merely imitating it." Frazer, The New Golden Bough.
Friday, December 19, 2008
[What do I think it means? If one thinks oneself wise, one might begin to obsess over one's favorite ideas, and obsession is the beginning of madness. RayS.]
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Lying 100 People who lie are resourceful, ambitious and successful. "Major Major had lied, and it was good…for he had observed that people who did lie were, on the whole, more resourceful and ambitious and successful than people who did not lie." Heller, Catch-22.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Love and money 21 Love vs. money. "Love is powerful, but money is all-powerful." French. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Lovers 19 Break up to make up. "The falling out of lovers is the renewal of love." Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Monday, December 15, 2008
Love p. 429 First love. "He glows with the intoxicating esteem of first love." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Love p. 231 Expression of a man's view of love. Henry Crawford on his intentions concerning Fanny: "I only want her to look kindly on me, to give me smiles as well as blushes, to keep a chair for me by herself wherever we are, and be all animation when I take it and talk to her; to think as I think, be interested in all my possessions and pleasures, try to keep me longer at Mansfield, and feel when I go away that she shall be never happy again." Austen: Mansfield Park
Love p. 458 The object of love is in the lover's imagination. Edmund: "…it had been the creature of my own imagination, not Miss Crawford, that I had been too apt to dwell on for many months past." Austen, Mansfield Park.
Love and hatred p. 438 Hatred is natural. Romantic love is not natural. "Hatred is natural in a sense that love, as she conceived it, a young person brought up in the tradition of romantic Love, is not natural at all." Katherine Anne Porter. “The Necessary Enemy.” 1948. Gross, ed. Essays.
Friday, December 12, 2008
Love 299 "Love is full of anxious fears." Ovid. Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Love 436 Love must be learned, and learned again and again; there is no end to it. Katherine Anne Porter. “The Necessary Enemy.” 1948. Gross, ed. Essays.
Love 436 Romantic love defined. "Romantic Love, more especially in America, where we are all brought up on it, whether we know it or not…is changeless, faithful, passionate, and its sole end is to render the two lovers happy." Katherine Anne Porter. “The Necessary Enemy.” 1948. Gross, ed. Essays.
Love 20 Impressions of love. "Of the love-making of Carol and Will Kennicott there is nothing to be told which may not be heard on every summery evening, on every shadowy block...biology and mystery...speech...slang phrases and flares of poetry...silences...contentment or shaky crises...all the beauty of youth, first discovered when it is passing--and all the commonplaceness of a well-to-do unmarried man encountering a pretty girl at the time when she is slightly weary of her employment and sees no glory ahead nor any man she is glad to serve." Sinclair Lewis, Main Street.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Love p. 99 "Life is love." Goethe. German. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Love p. 106 "The illusion (of love) is brief, the repentance long." Schiller. German. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Love p. 111 "The happy days of early love." Schiller. German. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Love p. 255 "Every lover is demented." Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Love p. 21 A boy's love does not last very long. "A boy's love is water in a basket." Spanish. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Love p. 21 There are no rules for love. "Love rules without rules." Italian. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Love p. 75 Don't talk; just love. "He who loves much says little." Italian. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Love p. 75 "He who loves, trusts." Italian. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Love 179 "Love is what happens to a man and a woman who don’t know each other." W. Somerset Maugham. Portable Curmudgeon.
Love 179 "When we want to read of the deeds that are done for love, [where] do we turn? To the murder column." George Bernard Shaw Portable Curmudgeon.
Love 180 "Love is the triumph of imagination over intelligence." H. L. Mencken. Portable Curmudgeon.
Love 180 The definition of love changes with age. "Love is the word used to label the sexual excitement of the young, the habituation of the middle-aged, and the mutual dependence of the old." John Ciardi. Portable Curmudgeon.
Monday, December 8, 2008
Love 157 "Love is a kind of warfare." Ovid. 1 BC. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Love 159 "Coquettes know how to please, not how to love, which is why men love them so much." Pierre Marivaux. 1717-18. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Love 163 "A grand passion is the privilege of people who have nothing to do." Oscar Wilde. 1891. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Love 163 "Christianity has done a great deal for love by making a sin of it." Anatole France. 1894. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Love 196 "I cannot love anyone if I hate myself." Jung. 1953. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
17. Love 176 “ 'Love': a temporary insanity curable by marriage." Ambrose Bierce. Portable Curmudgeon.
Love 176 “ 'Love': the delusion that one woman differs from another." H. L. Mencken. Portable Curmudgeon.
Love 177 "It’s possible to love a human being if you don’t know them too well." Charles Bukowski. Portable Curmudgeon.
Love 178 "Love is only a dirty trick played on us to achieve the continuation of the species." W. Somerset Maugham. Portable Curmudgeon.
Friday, December 5, 2008
Love 155 "It is a certain sign of love to want to know, to relive, the childhood of the other." Cesare Pavese. 1935-50. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Love 155 When one falls in love, one needs to study the people who are around her--on that your happiness depends. "When one feels oneself smitten by love for a woman, one should say to oneself, ‘Who are the people around her, What kind of life has she led?’ …one’s future happiness lies in the answer." Alfrred De Vigny. Mid 19th century. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Love 156 Love, however short in length of time, creates a past which envelops us. "Love makes up for the lack of long memories…all other affections need a past: love creates a past which envelops us, as if by enchantment." Benjamin Constant. 1816. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Love 156 The lover sees the loved one as a solitary individual. "To the lover the loved one appears always as solitary." Walter Benjamin. 1925-6. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Love 989 Love is a maelstrom. "It mattered not whether she were angel or demon; he was irrevocably within her sphere, and must obey the law that whirled him onward, in ever lessening circles, towards a result which he did not attempt to foreshadow." Hawthorne: “Rappaccini’s Daughter”
Love 995 Love is in the eyes. "By all appreciable signs, they loved; they had looked love, with eyes that conveyed the holy secret from the depths of one soul into the depths of the other…." Hawthorne: “Rappaccini’s Daughter”
Love 1005 "I would fain have been loved, not feared, murmured Beatrice." Hawthorne: “Rappaccini’s Daughter”
Love 153 Love is an idle mind's occupation. "Love is the affection of a mind that has nothing better to engage it." Theophrastus. 3rd century. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Literature and society 327 Sinclair Lewis's novels told us where our culture was headed. Mark Shorer, Afterword: "The drift of our commercial culture in the forty years since Babbitt suggests that Lewis did little to alter it, perhaps, but he was the first novelist to tell us explicitly into what stupid, and finally devastating, social damnation we were drifting." Lewis, Babbitt.
Literature and society 290 The future of society? " …Robert Sheckley has gone so far as to propose in a terrifying short story called 'The Seventh Victim,' the possibility that society might legalize murder among certain specified 'players' who hunt one another and are, in turn, hunted. [RFS: “Most Dangerous Game.”] Toffler, Future Shock.
Literature, Joyce 412 Insights into the composition of Finnegans Wake: prose vs. speech. "And then there is a curious fact about Finnegans Wake; every other prose book is written in prose; this book is written in speech; speech and prose are not the same thing...have different wave-lengths, for speech moves at the speed of light, where prose moves at the speed of the alphabet, and must be consecutive and grammatical and word perfect...Finnegans Wake is all speech...soliloquy...dialogue...at times oration...but it is always speech." James Stephens. “Finnegans Wake.” 1947. Gross, ed. Essays.
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Literature 1020 The slow growth of American literature. "How slowly our literature grows up!" Hawthorne: "P's Correspondence"
Literature 299 Realism distorts reality. "Realism is a corruption of reality." Wallace Stevens. 1957. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Literature 301 Characters in fiction are unified in their acts; people in reality act uncharacteristically. "The main difference between living people and fictitious characters is that the writer takes great pains to give the characters coherence and inner unity, whereas the living people may go to extremes of incoherence because their physical existence holds them together." Hugo Von Hofmannsthal. 1922. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Literature 302 Literature demonstrates the self against society. "The function of literature…has been to make us aware of the particularity of selves, and the high authority of the self in its quarrel with its society and its culture…in that sense subversive." Lionel Trilling. 1966. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Literature 103 Literature: pleasure and instruction. " …by giving pleasure and at the same time instructing." Horace. Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Literature 33 The universality of human character. "We have our forefathers and great-grand-dames all before us, as they were in Chaucer’s days: Their general characters are still remaining in mankind, and even in England, though they are called by other names than those of Monks and Friars, and Canons, and Lady Abbesses, and Nuns; for mankind is ever the same, and nothing lost out of nature...." John Dryden. “Chaucer.” 1700. Gross, ed. Essays.
Literature 151 What is a writer? "Small-town philosophy: Harold Bell Wright is a lovely writer, and he teaches such good morals in his novels, and folks say he’s made prett’ near a million dollars out of ‘em." Sinclair Lewis, Main Street.
Literature 168 Highbrows talk about literature; lowbrows talk about the weather. "Every time he speaks of the weather you jump him because he ain’t talking about poetry or Gertie [Goethe] or some other highbrow junk." Sinclair Lewis, Main Street.
Literature 327 Writers diagnose; they do not supply solutions. Mark Shorer, Afterword: "Are we justified that a writer is not only diagnostician, but the healer too?" Lewis, Babbitt.
Monday, December 1, 2008
Literary criticism 57 "Your manuscript is both good and original; but the part that is good is not original; and the part that is original is not good." Samuel Johnson. Portable Curmudgeon.
Literary criticism 73 Criticism is prejudice made credible. "Criticism is prejudice made plausible." H. L. Mencken. Portable Curmudgeon.
Literary criticism 318 The critic should not detract from the art because of the behavior of the artist. "...the critic should be able to recognize that the sphere of art and the sphere of ethics are absolutely distinct and separate." Oscar Wilde, “ ‘The True Critic’.” 1891. Gross, ed. Essays.
Literary criticism 338 The critic focuses on what is bad. "...criticism...acknowledges only varying shades of badness in everything." John Jay Chapman. “William James.” 1915. Gross, ed. Essays.
Literary criticism 70 You can't even enjoy a movie without his highfalutin' discussion on topics that are unrelated to the movie. "It was impossible to go to a movie with him without getting involved afterward in a discussion on empathy, Aristotle, universals, messages, and the obligation of the cinema as an art form in a materialistic society." Heller, Catch-22.
Literary criticism 286 If I read a book I have to review, I am influenced by my prejudices. "…Oscar Wilde’s facetious advice: I never read a book I must review; it prejudices you so." Manguel, A History of Reading.
Literary critics 72 Critics criticize artists for doing what they themselves cannot do. "Critics are like eunuchs in a harem: they know how it’s done, they’ve seen it done everyday, but they’re unable to do it themselves." Brendan Behan. Portable Curmudgeon.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Literary critic 318 The true critic uses several different methods of looking at literary works. "The true critic...will never suffer himself to be limited to any settled custom of thought, or stereotyped mode of looking at things." Oscar Wilde, “The True Critic.” 1891. Gross, ed. Essays.
Literary Criticism 1235 The critic needs to have empathy for the writer. "Sympathy, methinks, should have some little share in the critic’s qualifications, murmured Eustace Bright." “Tanglewood Fireside. Introductory to ‘The Three golden Apples’” Hawthorne’s The Wonder Book for Boys and Girls
Literary criticism 286 "Big book, big bore." Callimachus. 3rd century BC. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Literary criticism 53 You have to have the experience of aging and be willing to take the time to read and enjoy Proust. "You have to be over thirty to enjoy Proust." Gore Vidal. Portable Curmudgeon.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Listening 641 People, especially older people, recognize a good listener. "He recognized me with evident pleasure; for my rare properties as a patient listener invariably make me a favorite with elderly gentlemen and ladies of narrative propensities." Hawthorne: Legends of the Province-House. II: “Edward Randolph’s Portrait.”
Listening 1040 One has to discard habit in order to listen attentively. "…others listen with a rapt attention, as if a living truth had now, for the first time, forced its way through the crust of habit, reached their hearts, and awakened them to life." Hawthorne: "Main-Street"
Listening 208 The biggest obstruction to listening is concern by the listeners for what they are going to say. "There are people who instead of listening to what is being said to them are already listening to what they are going to say themselves." Albert Guinon. 1900. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Listening 4 The good listener is able to finish the speaker's thought. [Half truth. RayS.] "To the good listener half a word is enough." Spanish. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
Lifestyle 314 Intelligence recognizes that life is precarious and is not at all afraid of it. "...so it is the first part of intelligence to recognize our precarious estate in life, and the first part of courage to be not at all abashed before the fact." Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex.” 1878. Gross, ed. Essays.
Lifestyle 314 Prudence grows into a life afraid to take chances. "So soon as prudence has begun to grow up in the brain, like a dismal fungus, it finds its first expression in a paralysis of generous acts...begins to shrink spiritually...develops a fancy for parlors with a regulated temperature...." Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex.” 1878. Gross, ed. Essays.
Lifestyle 314 Concern for scruples produces a life that stands still. "...the scruple-monger ends by standing stock-still." Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex.” 1878. Gross, ed. Essays.
Lifestyle 315 It is better to live and die than to be afraid of death daily in a sick room. "It is better to live and be done with it, than to die daily in the sick room." Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex.” 1878. Gross, ed. Essays.
Lifestyle 316 A cheerful heart leaves a legacy of hope for mankind. "Every heart that has beat strong and cheerfully has left a hopeful impulse behind it in the world, and bettered the tradition of mankind." Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex.” 1878. Gross, ed. Essays.
Lifestyle 316 It is wonderful to die in the midst of great plans. "And even if death catch people, like an open pitfall, and in mid-career, laying out vast projects, and planning monstrous foundations, flushed with hope, and their mouths full of boastful language, they should be at once tripped up and silenced: is there not something brave and spirited in such a termination?...when the Greeks made their fine saying that those whom the gods love die young, I cannot help believing they had this sort of death also in their eye...surely, at whatever age, it overtake the man, this is to die young...in the hot-fit of life, a-tiptoe on the highest point of being, he passes at a bound on to the other side...full-blooded spirit shoots into the spiritual land." Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex.” 1878. Gross, ed. Essays.
Lifestyle 190 They worked out on their running machine, hoping to live forever. Clarice and Carl went running on their running machine upstairs…training to live forever. DeLillo, Underworld.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Life and the universe 448 The difference between life and nonlife. "Life is rebellious and anarchical, always testing the supposed immutability of the rules which the nonliving changelessly accepts." Joseph Wood Krutch. “The Colloid and the Crystal.” 1950. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life and the universe 449 The enemy of life is not death but the nonliving system. "Of us and all we stand for, the enemy is not so much death as the not-living, or rather that great system which succeeds without ever having had the need to be alive." Joseph Wood Krutch. “The Colloid and the Crystal.” 1950. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life and the universe 449 Life could end in exhaustion and in succumbing to the inanimate system. "…the possibility that the snow flake was not, after all, always inanimate, that it merely surrendered at some time impossibly remote the life which once achieved its perfect organization…even if we can imagine such a thing to be true, it serves only to warn us all the more strongly against the possibility that what we call the living might in the end succumb also to the seduction of the immutably fixed." Joseph Wood Krutch. “The Colloid and the Crystal.” 1950. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life and the universe 450 The lure of the inanimate. "And so my eye goes questioningly back to the frosted pane; while I slept the graceful pseudo-fronds crept across the glass, assuming, as life itself does, an intricate organization; ‘why live,’ they seem to say, ‘when we can be beautiful, complicated and orderly without the uncertainty and effort required of a living thing; once we were all that was; perhaps some day we shall be all that is; why not
join us?' " Joseph Wood Krutch. “The Colloid and the Crystal.” 1950. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life and the universe 461 Humans vs. the universe. "The universe throws down a challenge to the human spirit; in spite of his insignificance and abjection, man has taken it up." Aldous Huxley. “Meditation on the Moon.” 1931. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life, death 367 We live thoughtlessly without any concern for death. "Thoughtlessly we live, thinking death will never come." Menander. Greek. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Life and Death 55 Why do we groan about life, yet are sorry when people are relieved from it by death? "Thus we groan under life, and bewail those who are relieved from it." Sir Richard Steele, “On Recollections of Childhood; Death of Parents; First Love.” 1710. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life and death 315 Who would even want to begin to live if all he thought about was death? "Who would find heart enough to begin to live, if he dallied with the consideration of death?" Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex.” 1878. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life and death 409 A day moth's day of living. "It was a pleasant morning, mid-September, mild, benignant, yet with keener breath than that of the summer months...possibilities of pleasure seemed that morning so enormous and so various that to have only a moth’s part of life and a day moth’s at that, appeared a hard fate, and his zest in enjoying his meager opportunities to the full, pathetic...it seemed as if a fiber, very thin but pure, of the enormous energy of the world had been thrust into his frail and diminutive body...he was little or nothing but life...was as if someone had taken a tiny bead of pure life and decking it as lightly as possible with down and feathers, had set it dancing and zig zagging to show us the true nature of life." Virginia Woolf. “The Death of the Moth.” 1942. [Posthumous] Gross, ed. Essays.
Life and death 221 Why is the desire to live strongest as we grow old and closer to death? Metchnikoff "...it is necessary to find out...why [man] must grow old and die when his desire to live is strongest." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters.
Life and death 221 We live in good health and then we crave to die. Metchnikoff "--the thing to do is to find a way to live long enough in good health until we shall really crave to die." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters.
Life and death 471 I finally got to know him, and then he was a meaningless corpse. "For the first time he bridged the distance between his few contacts with Hearn and the last glimpse he had had of him, the bloody meaningless corpse." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life and death 529 Even though he was dead, he was very much alive to us. "Dead, he was as much alive to them as he had ever been." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life and the universe 447 A view of the universe as a frost flower. "Not the shapeless stone which seems to be merely waiting to be acted upon but the snow flake or the frost flower is the true representative of the lifeless universe as opposed to ours…represent plainly, as the stone does not, the fixed and perfect system of organization which includes the sun and its planets, includes therefore the earth itself, but against which life has set up its seemingly puny opposition." Joseph Wood Krutch. “The Colloid and the Crystal.” 1950. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life and the universe 448 The eternal laws of the inanimate. "The snow flake eternally obeys its one and only law: ‘Be thou six pointed’; the planets their one and only: ‘Travel thou in an ellipse.’ " Joseph Wood Krutch. “The Colloid and the Crystal.” 1950. Gross, ed. Essays.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Life 455 How do we measure quality of life? "We have no measures of the 'quality of life.' ” Toffler, Future Shock.
Life 472 We exist to learn and to entertain our neighbors. "…formed just such a contrast with his early opinion on the subject when the poor little girl’s coming had been first agitated, as time is forever producing between the plans and decisions of mortals, for their own instruction, and their neighbors’ entertainment." Austen, Mansfield Park.
Life 66 It is better to do than to have. William James once wrote that “lives based on having are less free than lives based on doing….” Toffler, Future Shock.
Life 154 What we learn from celebrities. "These vicarious people [images of celebrities] both live and fictional, play a significant role in our lives, providing models for behavior, acting out for us various roles and situations from which we draw conclusions about our own lives." Toffler, Future Shock.
Life 253 What all who are young need to learn. Young black woman: "…you need to have a feeling for the temporary—of making something as good as you can, while it lasts." Toffler, Future Shock.
Life 264 Too much choice paralyzes. "Ironically, the people of the future may suffer not from an absence of choice, but from a paralyzing surfeit of it." Toffler, Future Shock.
Life and Death 924 Nothing is ever completed in this life; what is accomplished is simply an exercise of the spirit. "But, rather, such incomplete designs of this life will be perfected nowhere; this so frequent abortion of man’s dearest projects must be taken as a proof, that the deeds of earth, however etherealized by piety or genius, are without value, except as exercises and manifestations of the spirit." Hawthorne: “The Artist of the Beautiful”
Life and death 356 "…wisdom is a meditation not of death but of life." Spinoza. 1677. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life and death 356 "No man should be afraid to die, who hath understood what it is to live." Thomas Fuller II. 1732. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Life 310 Life is order in complexity. "Know that life is more than protoplasm, more than fertile egg or ovum, that it is ultimate order in complexity." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Life 340 The wonder of wondering. December. "But man is abroad...knowing dawn, knowing the wonder of a new day even in December...knowing the wonder of wondering itself." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Life 350 Life will persist whether humans are here to see it or not. "Even so rudimentary a thing as a root, a seed, or an insect egg is an expression of insistent vitality, of life itself...life, which will persist whether man is here to see it or not...and occasionally we catch a glimpse of its elemental meaning." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Life 355 We have faith that if there was a yesterday there will be a tomorrow. "We are wise; we are sophisticated; believing that because there was a yesterday there will be a tomorrow, we take it on faith; last year and last summer are sufficient proof that another year, another summer lie ahead." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Life 356 Earth, sun and time continue and only man summarizes. "Earth and sun and time proceed in their cyclic rounds, and only man presumes to summarize." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Life 356 There is no end or beginning to the year but only a part of the whole. "...year’s end is neither an end nor a beginning but a part of the infinite whole." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Life 357 "Now" does not exist without a yesterday and a tomorrow. " … 'now' itself has no meaning without a yesterday and a tomorrow." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Life 91 No one can completely comprehend the world. "Kafka’s intuition that if the world has coherence, it is one that we can never fully comprehend." Manguel, A History of Reading.
Life 195 Everything good in his life occurred because of chance. "Like all the good things that occurred in his long life, that tremendous fortune had its origins in chance." Marquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude.
Monday, November 17, 2008
Life 39 An evening at The Rainbow. "What was he to do this evening to pass the time...might as well go to the Rainbow, and hear the talk about the cock-fighting: everybody was there and what else was to be done?" George Eliot, Silas Marner.
Life 156 Things happen and we don't know why. “ 'Ah,' said Dolly, with soothing gravity, 'it’s like the night and the morning, and the sleeping and the waking, and the rain and the harvest—one goes and the other comes, and we know nothing how nor where.' " George Eliot, Silas Marner.
Life 183 I know what I know and everything else is a puzzle. "And that’s all as ever I can be sure on, and everything else is a big puzzle to me when I think on it." George Eliot, Silas Marner.
Life 184 There's good in this world, even if I can't see it because of the wickedness and trouble. Silas: "There’s good i’ this world—I’ve a feeling o’ that now; and it makes a man feel as there’s a good more nor he can see, i’ spite o’ the trouble and the wickedness." George Eliot, Silas Marner.
Life 189 Things will change. Silas: "But there’s this to be thought on, Eppie: things will change, whether we like it or no; things won’t go on for a long while just as they are and no difference. "George Eliot, Silas Marner.
Life 222 Some things cannot be fixed. "…it is too late to mend some things…." George Eliot, Silas Marner.
Life 91 What can you learn from a bursting bud? "And it is written in so simple a place as a bursting bud." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Life 150 Another day is another chance. "This is another day, another blank page in the endless book of time, another chance." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Life 164 "Innate wariness is the price of life." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year
Friday, November 14, 2008
Life 235 "You look out for everything, he thought, and you still get hit from behind." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 262 Prep school ethics? " …regular-fellow ethic borrowed from more exclusive eastern prep schools: you do not lie…you do not cheat…you do not swear…you do not screw…and you go to church." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 273 "Get potted, get screwed, and get up in the morning, somehow." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 275 One view of life. "Everything is crapped up, everything is phony, everything curdles when you touch it." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 316 "In the final analysis there was only necessity and one’s reactions to it." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 319 Lessons from life. "Life’s a hard thing, and nobody gives you nothing; you do it alone; every man’s hand is against you, that’s what you also find out." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 342 Croft: "If you can’t do nothin’, keep your mouth shut…one of his few maxims." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 486 There are private and public battles fought simultaneously. "Each of them was fighting his private battle." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 548 Metaphor for life. "You carried it alone as long as you could, and then you weren’t strong enough to take it any longer…kept fighting everything, and everything broke you down, until in the end you were just a little goddam bolt holding on and squealing when the machine went too fast." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Life 180 Each day was a challenge to his mortality. "Each day he faced was another dangerous mission against mortality." Heller, Catch-22.
Life 254 It's better to face challenges than to live a slave. "Because it’s better to die on one’s feet than live on one’s knees." Heller, Catch-22.
Life 254 It's better to stand tall than to die kneeling. "It is better to live on one’s feet than die on one’s knees." Heller, Catch-22.
Life 455 People [the media? RayS.] make money from good deeds and tragedy. "I see people cashing in on every decent impulse and every human tragedy." Heller, Catch-22.
Life 156 Facing death was simply facing one more event in life, nothing more. "He had been to touch the great death, and found that, after all, it was but the great death…he was a man." Crane, The Red Badge of Courage.
Life 156 Scene. Metaphor for life. "Over the river a golden ray of sun came through the hosts of leaden rain clouds." Crane, The Red Badge of Courage.
Life 14 Take it one day at a time. "There was nothing to do but to go from one day into the next." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 78 Put your time in, work hard and die quickly. “I’ll tell you, Ossie,” his father had said, “a man works and he toils, he puts in his good sweat tryin’ to pull out a livin’ from the land, and when all his work is done, if the good Lord sees it fitten, it’s taken away in a storm.” Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Life 182 If you make it your goal, you won't achieve it. "Ya lose whatever you want when you start goin’ for it." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Life 20 Life feeds on life, which is cruel, but God's will. Leeuwenhoek: "Life lives on life—it is cruel, but it is God’s will." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters.
Life 110 Mankind's basic fight: against death. "...the fight of mankind against death." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters.
Life 97 Bad luck and loss are mysteries. "…the mystery of bad luck the mystery of loss." DeLillo, Underworld.
Life 97 The experience of an awful moment. "What’s it like to have to live with one awful moment?" DeLillo, Underworld.
Life 779 Sleeping through life. "I have trouble sleeping; I also have trouble staying awake." DeLillo, Underworld.
Life 817 With purpose and design in life come serenity. "The serenity of immense design is missing from her life." DeLillo, Underworld.
Life 826 "Everything is connected in the end." DeLillo, Underworld.
Life 9 Some people will do anything to prolong existence. "He was working hard at increasing his life span…did it by cultivating boredom." Heller, Catch-22.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Life 104 Dreaming of being serene. "But he pictured loafing with Paul Riesling beside a lake in Maine…as overpowering and imaginative as homesickness…had never seen Maine, yet he beheld the shrouded mountains, the tranquil lake of evening." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 127 "He was converted to serenity." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 190 Life is mechanical. "With no Vergil Gunches before whom to set his face in resolute optimism, he [Babbitt] beheld and half admitted that he beheld, his way of life incredibly mechanical; mechanical business—a brisk selling of badly built houses; mechanical religion—a dry, hard church, shut off from the real life of the streets, inhumanly respectable as a top-hat; mechanical golf and dinner parties and bridge and conversation; save with Paul Riesling, mechanical friendships—back-slapping and jocular…." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 190 Pretentiousness (pretending to be what you are not) destroys the good moments in life. "He [Babbitt] saw the years, the brilliant winter days and all the long sweet afternoons which were meant for summery meadows, lost in such brittle pretentiousness." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 191 He hated cajoling men he hated. "He thought…of cajoling men he hated….." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 221 The futility of life. "It was coming to him [Babbitt] that perhaps all life as he knew it and vigorously practiced it was futile; that heaven as portrayed by the Reverend Dr. John Jennison Drew was neither probable nor very interesting; that he hadn’t much pleasure out of making money; that it was of doubtful work to rear children merely that they might rear children who would rear children." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 242 What do we run away from? "Thus it came to him merely to run away was folly, because he could never run away from himself." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 242 He had only one choice. "He knew he was slinking back [to Zenith] not because it was what he longed to do but because it was all he could do." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 00 Credo. [Paul DeKruif’s] ambition is to “grow old very slowly and stay young very long.” Intro to Paul DeKruif's Microbe Hunters.
Monday, November 10, 2008
Life 371 Experience leads us back to home. "I had the sense of coming home to myself, and of having found out what a little circle man’s experience is." Cather, My Ántonia
Life 320 One view of life: misery and tragic. "What misery, what an unspeakable tragedy, life is for some!" Rölvaag, Giants in the Earth.
Life 8 The world is cruel and dull and proud of it. "She did not yet know the immense ability of the world to be casually cruel and proudly dull...." Sinclair Lewis, Main Street.
Life 156 We create most of our own troubles. "Most troubles are unnecessary." Sinclair Lewis, Main Street.
Life 197 We need to be more conscious of life. "I think we want a more conscious life…tired of drudging and sleeping and dying." Sinclair Lewis, Main Street.
Life 224 The feeling of never being able to escape the drudgery of life and people. "In the prairie heat she trudged along unchanging ways, talked about nothing to tepid people, and reflected that she might never escape from them." Sinclair Lewis, Main Street.
Life 22 Tired of life as it is. "Oh, Lord, sometimes I'd like to quit the whole game…the office worry…and I act cranky and--I don't mean to, but I get--so darn tired." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 31 One man's dream. "I'd like to beat it off to the woods right now…loaf all day…go to Gunch's again tonight, and play poker, and cuss as much as I feel like, and drink a hundred and nine-thousand bottles of beer." Lewis, Babbitt.
Life 55 Does a man have any rights? How can I escape boredom? "Good Lord, I don't know what 'rights' a man has…and I don't know the solution to boredom." Lewis, Babbitt.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Life 311 Life is short. "We live the time that a match flickers...." Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex.” 1878. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 315 If you are about to die, keep living and accomplishing. "By all means, begin your folio; even if the doctor does not give you a year, even if he hesitates about a month, make one brave push and see what can be accomplished in a week." Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex.” 1878. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 319 Most events of contemporary life are of little importance. "By carefully chronicling the current events of contemporary life, it shows us of what very little importance such events really are." Oscar Wilde, “ ‘The True Critic’.” 1891. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 380 You will achieve health, strength, grace and beauty if you don't think about them. "The one supreme way of making all those processes go right, the process of health, and strength, and grace, and beauty...is to think about something else." G. K. Chesterton, “On Sandals and Simplicity.” 1905. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 446 "We find it difficult to conceive a world except in terms of purpose, will, or of intention." Joseph Wood Krutch. “The Colloid and the Crystal.” 1950. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 448 The story of life is inevitable change. "The story of every living thing is still in the telling…may hope and it may try…though it may succeed or fail, it will certainly change." Joseph Wood Krutch. “The Colloid and the Crystal.” 1950. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 514 The epitome of life. "By following these simple instructions and studying the methods of those who have already made good in the job, you can assure yourself a glamorous youth, prosperous middle age, the title of Grand Old Man, and finally some laudatory obituaries." Evelyn Waugh. “Well-Informed Circles…And How to Move In them.” 1939. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 543 Life has multiple images. "We are one of many appearances of the thing called Life; we are not its perfect image, for it has no image except Life, and life is multitudinous and emergent in the stream of time." Loren Eiseley. ‘The Snout.” 1957. Gross, ed. Essays.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Life 314 "We have all been mad once." Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 341 The depressive point of view about life. "Everything wearies, everything breaks, everything passes away." French. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 347 "Ingratitude is the world's payment." German. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 359 "Living is not breathing but doing." Rousseau. French. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 309 The wonders of insects. "Hold in your hand the empty shell of a beetle or the shed husk of a locust; see the intricate parts, the ingenuity of life, now gone elsewhere…chitin, the horny substance much like your own fingernail, but only a few weeks ago a living thing…." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year.
Life 15 The "wheel" of life. "To see how the projectors of the world, like the spoke of the wheel of Sesostris’ chariot, are tumbled up and down, from beggary to worship, from worship to honor, from honor to baseness again." Owen Felltham, “How the Distempers of These Times Should Affect Wise Men.” 1620. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 15 The speciousness of Machiavelli. "To see Machiavel’s tenets held as oracles; honesty reputed shallowness; justice bought and sold...confess money to be stronger than truth." Owen Felltham, “How the Distempers of These Times Should Affect Wise Men.” 1620. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 16 The government distemper. "...plain dealing is thought the enemy of state and honor." Owen Felltham, “How the Distempers of These Times Should Affect Wise Men.” 1620. Gross, ed. Essays.
Life 16 The frustration of not being able to resolve the world's problems. "And, which would mad a man more than all, to know all this [wrong in the world], yet not know how to help it." Owen Felltham, “How the Distempers of These Times Should Affect Wise Men.” 1620. Gross, ed. Essays.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Life 88 "Bodies grow slowly and die quickly." Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 175 "A man is lent, not given, to life": Publius Syrus. Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 192 "Every day is a little life." German. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 207 "Seek to live unnoticed." Epicurus. Greek. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 208 "Life is a dream." Lope de Vega. Spanish. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 210 "The world more often rewards the appearance of merit than merit itself": La Rochefoucauld. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 216 "The last thing we lose is hope." Italian. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 246 "Life is not mere living but the enjoyment of health." Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Life 247 "Not for ourselves alone are we born." Cicero. Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Life 170 "Life does not cease to be funny when people die any more than it ceases to be serious when people laugh." George Bernard Shaw, Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 170 "Life is not so bad if you have plenty of luck, a good physique and not too much imagination." Christopher Isherwood, Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 171 Life defined. "Life is a predicament which precedes death." Henry James, Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 171 "Human life is a flash of occasional enjoyments lighting up a mass of pain and misery, a bagatelle of transient experience." A. N. Whitehead, Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 172 "Life is like an onion: you peel off layer after layer and then you find there is nothing in it." J. G. Huneker, Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 172 "The first half of life is ruined by our parents, and the second half by our children." Clarence Darrow, Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 172 "The meaning of life is that it stops." Franz Kafka, Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 173 "Life is nothing but a competition to be the criminal rather than the victim." Bertrand Russell, Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 173 "Life is a … treacherous game and nine hundred and ninety-nine men out of a thousand are bastards." Theodore Dreiser, Portable Curmudgeon.
Monday, November 3, 2008
Life 349 Words of wisdom mean nothing until we experience them in life. "Nothing ever becomes real till it is experienced—even a proverb is no proverb to you till your life has illustrated it." Keats. 1819. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
63. Life 350 Live for the Day. "Nothing is worth more than this day." Goethe. Early 19th century. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 8 "To be on the alert is to live, to be lulled into security is to die." Oscar Wilde. Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 9 A negative view of life. "Latent in every man is a venom of amazing bitterness, a black resentment; something that curses and loathes life, a feeling of being trapped, of having trusted and been fooled, of being the helpless prey of impotent rage, blind surrender, the victim of a savage, ruthless power that gives and takes away, enlists a man, drops him, promises and betrays, and--crowning injury--inflicts on him the humiliation of feeling sorry for himself." Paul Valéry. Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 62 A negative view of life. "Childhood: The period of human life intermediate between the idiocy of infancy and the folly of youth—two removes from the sin of manhood and three from the remorse of age." Ambrose Bierce. Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 64 A negative view of life. "A son of my own! Oh, no, no, no! Let my flesh perish with me, and let me not transmit to anyone the boredom and the ignominiousness of life." Gustave Falaubert. Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 65 A metaphor for life. "Everyone in the world is Christ and they are all crucified." Sherwood Anderson. Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 92 Our view of ourselves vs. how others see us. "The very purpose of existence is to reconcile the glowing opinion we hold of ourselves with the appalling things that other people think about us." Quentin Crisp. Portable Curmudgeon.
Life 140 Life is a bore. "The basic fact about human existence is not that it is a tragedy, but that it is a bore." H. L. Mencken. Portable Curmudgeon.
Friday, October 31, 2008
Life 80 When we care for anything too deeply, everything else becomes the enemy. "The moment we care for anything deeply, the world—that is, all the other miscellaneous interests—becomes our enemy." G. K. Chesterton. 1905. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 81 We can never be happy if we are too sensitive. "It must be admitted that there are some parts of the soul which we must entirely paralyze before we can live happily in this world." Chamfort. 1805. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 85 People go on living without concern for your broken heart. "You may break your heart, but men will still go on as before." Marcus Aurelius. 2nd century. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 100 Only God and angels can be observers in life. "But men must know, that in this theater of man’s life it is reserved only for God and angels to be lookers on." Sir Francis Bacon. 1605. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 139 The concerns of the moment vanish along with the people involved in them. "Think of the myriad enmities, suspicions, animosities, and conflicts that are now vanished with the dust and ashes of the men who knew them; and fret no more." Marcus Aurelius. 2nd century. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 231 Summary of life? "…the waves of fulfillment, disappointment, right guesses, and wrong moves that make up our daily life." E. H. Gombrich. 1960. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 332 It's not the great tragedies that take up life, but the little annoyances that waste our time. "What uses up a life is not so much its great tragedies as its small annoyances and the recurrent waste of time." Henry De Motherlant. 1930-44. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 347 "The most precious thing in life is its uncertainty." Yoshida Kenko. 1340. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 347 Life is short. "All of us are creatures of a day; the rememberer and the remembered alike." Marcus Aurelius. 2nd century. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Life 47 Life means failure. "Whatever else we are intended to do, we are not intended to succeed: failure is the fate allotted." Robert Louis Stevenson. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 47 Failure is inevitable in life. "The failures and reverses which await men--and one after another sadden the brow of youth..." Thoreau. 1842. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 48 The earth turns and never gets anywhere; live for the moment. "Nothing ever gets anywhere; the earth keeps turning round and gets nowhere; the moment is the only thing that counts." Jean Cocteau. 1922. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 52 There is tragedy in little events and the trivial in the truly tragic. "There are tragic elements in superficial things and trivial in the tragic." Hugo von Hofmannsthal. 1905. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 53 Some things people can learn only from themselves. "There is much of mankind that a man can learn only from himself." Walter Bagehot. 1879. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 57 I seem to be prepared for something that never happens. "...all [my] life...seems to me preparation for something that never happens." W. B. Yeats. 1938. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 57 There is no finality in life, except for death. "We live beyond any tale we happen to enact." V. S. Pritchett. 1979. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 59 Life is a theater. "Everybody has his own theater, in which he is manager, actor, prompter, playwright, scene-shifter, boxkeeper, doorkeeper, all in one, and audience into the bargain." Julius Hare. 1827. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 68 Our greatest despair is for the possibilities we did not realize. "It is not impossibilities which fill us with the deepest despair, but possibilities which we have failed to realize." Robert Mallet. (b. 1915.) Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Life 31 "Life is short, but its ills make it seem long." Publius Syrus. 1st century B.C. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 32 "Life is one long process of getting tired." Samuel Butler. 1912. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 37 If people were granted their wishes, life would not be any better. "It would not be better if things happened to men just as they wish." Heraclitus. 500 B.C. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 38 When we think we have won the day, look out! "It is the favorite stratagem of our passions to sham a retreat, and to turn sharp round upon us at the moment we have made up our minds that the day is our own." George Eliot. 1859. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 39 "Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed." Pope. 1727. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 43 Opposites are vital to progress in life. "Without contraries is no progression; attraction and repulsion, reason and energy, love and hate, are necessary to human existence." Blake. 1790-3. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 45 We ignore circumstances and they grow to require our involvement. "Circumstances are like clouds continually gathering and bursting--while we are laughing the seed of some trouble is put into the wide arable land of events--while we are laughing it sprouts, it grows, and suddenly bears a poison fruit which we must pluck." Keats. 1819. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 46 "Life is a maze...." Cyril Connolly. 1944. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 46 Is life simply a maze without end? "How if there were no center at all [to the maze], but just one alley after another, and the whole world a labyrinth without end or issue?" Robert Louis Stevenson. 1881. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Life 1145 What is the goal of life? To do right, but the world has lost its focus on that goal. " …restoring to us the simple perception of what is right, and the single-hearted desire to achieve it; both of which have long been lost, in consequence of this weary activity of brain, and torpor or passion of the heart that now afflicts the universe." Hawthorne: Preface to “The Old Manse”
Life 1146 Man has created a labyrinth and now seeks a clue to how to escape it. "…to whom just so much of insight had been imparted, as to make life all a labyrinth around them—came to seek the clue that should guide them out of their self-involved bewilderment." Hawthorne: Preface to “The Old Manse”
Life 19 Most people don't wonder about the meaning of their lives. "…Nature has never put the fatal question as to the meaning of their lives into the mouths of most people." Jung. 1934. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 25 There is no tranquility in life because life is motion. "There is no such thing as perpetual tranquility of mind, while we live here; because life itself is but motion...." Hobbes. 1651. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 25 The world can be defined as discord. "The world is a vast temple dedicated to discord." Voltaire. 1752. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 26 "Man spends his life in reasoning on the past, in complaining of the present, in fearing for the future." Antoine Rivarol. Late 18th century. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 28 "Life is a great bundle of little things." Oliver Wendell Holmes, son. 1859. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 28 We cannot shape circumstances; we must comply with them. "Things are greater than we, and will not comply with us; we, who are less than things, must comply with them." Benjamin Whichcote. 1703. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Life 29 We observe life's tragedies and then we must play a part in them. "Life is a tragedy wherein we sit as spectators for awhile and then act out our part in it." Swift, 1711. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Monday, October 27, 2008
Life 821 Metaphor for death. "There was one strange thing that troubled me; amid the occupations or amusements of the Fair, nothing was more common than for a person—whether at a feast, theater or church or trafficking for wealth and honors…and however unseasonable the interruption—suddenly to vanish like a soap bubble, and be never more seen of his fellows; and so accustomed were the latter to such little accidents, that they went on with their business, as quietly as if nothing had happened." Hawthorne: "The Celestial Rail-Road"
Life 850 When life is "death in life." "The arrangements and decorations of the banquet were probably intended to signify that death-in-life which had been the testator’s definition of existence." Hawthorne: "The Christmas Banquet"
Life 923 Fully conscious of life. " …his first impulse was to thank Heaven for rendering him again the being of thought, imagination, and keenest sensibility, that he had long ceased to be." Hawthorne: “The Artist of the Beautiful”
Life 923 When we use life to attain something, we realize how fragile life is. "When we desire life for the attainment of an object, we recognize the frailty of its texture." Hawthorne: “The Artist of the Beautiful”
Life 924 The achiever dies; the sluggish live. "The prophet dies; and the man of torpid heart and sluggish brain lives on; the poet leaves his song half sung, or finishes it, beyond the scope of mortal ears, in a celestial choir." Hawthorne: “The Artist of the Beautiful”
Life 945 Life consists of the petty. "…out of the turmoil of their petty perplexities…." Hawthorne: “A Select Party”
Life 1142 The conventions mask the depths of life. "…it seemed to me that all the artifice and conventionalism of life was but an impalpable thinness upon its surface." Hawthorne: Preface to “The Old Manse”
Life 1143 Consciousness of life. "It is good to be alive at such times." Hawthorne: Preface to “The Old Manse”
Life 1143 Proof of our immortality? "For our Creator would never have made such lovely days, and given us the deep hearts to enjoy them, above and beyond all thought, unless we were meant to be immortal." Hawthorne: Preface to “The Old Manse”
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Life 1330 "With so little time to live, I do not choose to waste any of it in sleep." “The Minotaur” Hawthorne, Tanglewood Tales.
Life 1368 "You must make a grave here, and lay your mother’s weary frame into it; my pilgrimage is over." “The Dragon’s Teeth” Hawthorne, Tanglewood Tales
Life 334 "Every human being lives with unrealized dreams and unfulfilled objectives." McNamara’s In Retrospect
Life 1225 Even the young grow old sooner than they expect. "The children, moreover, who before seemed immortal in their childhood, now grew older, day by day, and came soon to be youths and maidens, and men and women by-and-by, and aged people…." “The Paradise of Children” Hawthorne’s The Wonder Book for Boys and Girls
Life 1286 The ability to wait is a hard lesson to learn. "How hard a lesson it is to wait! Our life is brief and how much of it is spent in teaching us only this!" “The Chimera” Hawthorne’s The Wonder Book for Boys and Girls
Life 606 They are happy who learn the riddle of life without wasting a life time to learn it. "Happy they who read the riddle without a weary world-search, or a lifetime spent in vain." Hawthorne: Hawthorne: “The Threefold Destiny: A Fairy Legend”
Life 613 His daily life and his death were at odds. "I glance at these minute particulars of his daily life, because they form so strange a contrast with the circumstances of his death." Hawthorne: “Jonathan Cilley”
Life 743 The joys of life that will some day be annihilated. "The fragrance of flowers, and of new-mown hay; the genial warmth of sunshine, and the beauty of a sunset among clouds; the comfort and cheerful glow of the fireside; the deliciousness of fruits and all good cheer; the magnificence of mountains, and seas, and cataracts, and the softer charm of rural scenery; even the fast-falling snow, and the gray atmosphere through which it descends—all these, and innumerable other enjoyable things of earth, must perish with her…it is not that I so much object to giving up these enjoyments, on my own account…but I hate to think that they will have been eternally annihilated from the list of joys." Hawthorne: “The Hall of Fantasy”
Life 762 When the world starts over again, there will be no reminiscences. "…the new Adam and Eve, who, having no reminiscences…are content to live and be happy in the present." Hawthorne: “The New Adam and Eve”
Life 812 The modern (easy) vs. the traditional (hard) way of life. "The passengers being all comfortably seated, we now rattled away merrily, accomplishing a greater distance in ten minutes than Christian [of Pilgrim’s Progress] probably trudged over in a day; it was laughable…to observe two dusty foot-travelers, in the old pilgrim guise, with cockle-shell and staff; their mystic rolls of parchment in their hands, and their intolerable burdens on their backs…preposterous obstinacy of these honest people in persisting to groan and stumble along the difficult pathway, rather than take advantage of modern improvements [the railway]…greeted the two pilgrims with many pleasant gibes and a roar of laughter…enveloped them in an atmosphere of scalding steam." Hawthorne: "The Celestial Rail-Road"
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
"One of the most striking differences between a cat and a lie is that a cat has only nine lives." Twain. 1894. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms., p. 221.
"The cruelest lies are often told in silence." Robert Louis Stevenson. 1881. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms, p. 222.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Librarian 93 Carol: “Well, I’m sure you will agree with me in one thing: the chief task of a librarian is to get people to read.” Miss Villets: “My feeling, Mrs. Kennicott, and I am merely quoting the librarian of a very large college, is that the first duty of the conscientious librarian is to preserve the books.” Sinclair Lewis, Main Street.
Libraries 271 "The world itself is a volume larger than all the libraries in it." Hazlitt. 1820. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Library 189 "…the magnificent purpose of the [Alexandria] library was to encapsulate the totality of human knowledge." Manguel, A History of Reading.
Monday, October 20, 2008
Liberty 118 People give the name of liberty to slavery. "Man persuades himself that he is emancipated every time that he decorates a new servitude with the name of liberty."Achille Tournier. 19th century. Gross, ed.
Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Liberty 170 Liberty sounds good in speeches, but is more difficult to practice in reality. "Liberty doesn’t work as well in practice as it does in speeches." Will Rogers. Portable Curmudgeon.
Liberty, law 170 Liberty defined. "Liberty is the right to do whatever the law permits." Montesquieu. Portable Curmudgeon.
Friday, October 17, 2008
Liberalism 183 Liberals exist in Eden and legislate the way people should be; they ignore the friction among people that prevents the liberals' visions from becoming reality. "The conservative party in the universe concedes that the radical would talk sufficiently to the purpose, if he were still in the garden of Eden; he legislates for man as he ought to be; his theory is right, but he makes no allowance for friction; and this omission makes his whole doctrine false." Emerson, “The Conservative.” 1841. Gross, ed. Essays.
Liberalism 154 The "underground" socialists: Liberals. "The worst menace to sound government is not the avowed socialists but a lot of cowards who work under cover—the long-haired gentry who call themselves “liberals” and “non-partisan” and “intelligentsia” and God only knows how many other trick names…irresponsible teachers and professors constitute the worst of this whole gang…." Lewis, Babbitt.
Liberals 451 Liberals are afraid of the world as it is or they are young and want to remake the world in their own image. Cummings [the General] has once said, “You know, Robert, there really are only two kinds of liberals and radicals…the ones who are afraid of the world and want it changed to benefit themselves…and...the young people who don’t understand their own desires…want to remake the world, but they never admit they want to remake it in their own image." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Leisure 258 "Leisure without literature (or books) is death." Latin. Dictionary of Foreign Terms
Leisure xv "Leisure is distinguished from idleness; the Utopians have a passion for learning and self-improvement, and they believe that leisure must be used for the cultivation of the mind." Introd. John Anthony Scott. Sir Thomas More, Utopia.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Legend 1069 "…at some future day, a child should be born hereabouts, who was destined to become the greatest and noblest personage of his time, and whose countenance in manhood, should bear an exact resemblance to the Great Stone Face." Hawthorne: "The Great Stone Face"
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Leaves 309 Choose a crisp leaf, no matter whether maple or oak or ash, and try to match it; and know that leaves are almost as varied as snowflakes. Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year.
Monday, October 13, 2008
Learning 249 People don't learn because they anticipate what is being said and are formulating their response. "Some people will never learn anything, for this reason, because they understand everything too soon." Pope. 1727. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Learning 267 The things we know best are the things we have learned rather than were taught. "The things we know best are the things we haven’t been taught." Vauvenargues. 1746. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Learning 268 The self-educated develop peculiar perceptions. "The self-educated are marked by stubborn peculiarities." Isaac D’Israeli. 1795. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Learning 269 What you are forced to learn, you are quick to forget. "That which anyone has been long learning unwillingly, he unlearns with…with eagerness and haste." Hazlitt. 1821. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Learning 271 You need to apply what you learn. "To spend too much time in studies is sloth." Francis Bacon. 1597-1625. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Leadership 305 "It was basically a superstition: Dalleson believed that if he could make his own small unit function perfectly the rest of his division would follow his example." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Leadership 323 The focus of his words and actions was to affect his men. "…there is, and it’s very important, the level where he must do and say things for their effect upon the men with whom he lives and works." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Leadership 338 The attitude of the men toward their leader: a feeling of hostility: Hearn, on the reaction of the men in his platoon toward him: "It was the kind of physical readiness, the slight guilt, the slight shame, perhaps, that he had felt in walking through a slum neighborhood, conscious of the hostility of the people who watched him pass." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Leadership 340 "What bothered Hearn was that the General might not be aware of his own motives." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Leadership 340 His motive to establish a good platoon was to prove the general wrong in an institution he despised. "If he could manage it, if it turned out the way he wanted, he could establish some kind of liaison with the men…a good platoon…to do what, to work a little better in an institution he despised…to prove Cummings [the General] was wrong?" Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Leadership 347 The leader experiments with the use of his men who are killed in the process. "What the hell is it to the General if we get knocked off…just an experiment that got fugged-up." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Leadership 355 Felt that if the platoon liked its leader, the platoon would fail. "Croft always despised a platoon leader who made efforts to have his men like him…goddam platoon’ll got to hell, he told himself." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Leadership 435 Aware that he, the leader, had little to do with the success of the attack. "Cummings [the General] was bothered by the suspicion, very faint, not quite stated, that he had no more to do with the success of the attack than a man who presses a button and waits for the elevator." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Leadership 555 The general knew he had little to do with the outcome; it was because of so many factors that he could not comprehend. "The General: For a moment he almost admitted that he had had very little or perhaps nothing at all to do with this victory, or indeed any victory—it had been accomplished by a random play of vulgar good luck larded into a casual net of factors too large, too vague, for him to comprehend." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead.
Leadership 141 In today's world the line between the leader and the led has become not well defined. Joseph A. Raffaele: "…we are moving toward a “working society of technical co-equals” in which the line of demarcation between the leader and the led has become fuzzy." Toffler, Future Shock.