Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Pablo Casals

Each person has inside a basic decency and goodness. If he listens to it and acts on it, he is giving a great deal of what it is the world needs most. It is not complicated but it takes courage. It takes courage for a person to listen to his own goodness and act on it.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Anne Lamott

There's a lovely Hasidic story of a rabbi who always told his people that if they studied the Torah, it would put Scripture on their hearts. One of them asked, "Why on our hearts, and not in them?" The rabbi answered, "Only God can put Scripture inside. But reading sacred text can put it on your hearts, and then when your hearts break, the holy words will fall inside."

Anne Lamott

I have only mediocre self-esteem when I am doing things that I am good at or that don't require any self-esteem.

- Plan B: Further thoughts on faith

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thomas Edison

Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Joyce Sutphen

The heart remembers everything it loved and gave away,
everything it lost and found again, and everyone
it loved, the heart cannot forget.

--from "What the Heart Cannot Forget," Coming Back to the Body (2000)

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Donna Tartt

This is something that the novel does better than any other art form: reproducing the inner life and the inner experience of another person...Unlike movies, where we're always onlookers, in novels we have the experience of being someone else: knowing another person's soul from the inside. No other art form does that.

--Interview for Powell's Indiespensible, Vol. 43 (November 2013)

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Alan Alda

Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won't come in.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Brené Brown

Vulnerability is not weakness.
Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity, and change.

I did not learn about vulnerability and courage and creativity and innovation from studying vulnerability, I learned about these things from studying shame.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Henry Ford

Chop your own wood and it will warm you twice.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Tom Wilson

You can complain because roses have thorns, or you can rejoice because thorns have roses.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Elie Wiesel

Ultimately, the only power to which man should aspire is that which he exercises over himself. 

Barbara Crooker

...[T]his has been a day of grace
in the dead of winter,
the hard knuckle of the year,
a day that unwrapped itself
like an unexpected gift,
and the stars turn on,
order themselves
into the winter night.

--an excerpt from "Ordinary Life" (2001)

Friday, September 13, 2013

Mama Zara Kushandwizdom

Create positive space around you,
even if its in your mind.
You must have an environment of good energy,
in order to give that.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

John Muir

We all travel the milky way together, trees and men...trees are travellers, in the ordinary sense. They make journeys, not very extensive ones, it is true: but our own little comes and goes are only little more than tree-wavings -- many of them not so much. 

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Abraham Hicks

Your work is not to make it happen, your work is to let it happen. And you let it happen by possibility thinking, not negative thinking...by hopeful thinking, not doubtful thinking...by believing it will come, rather than doubting it will come...By talking yourself into feeling good!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Paul Zimmer

Dog Music 

Amongst dogs are listeners and singers.
My big dog sang with me so purely,
puckering her ruffled lips into an O,
beginning with small, swallowing sounds
like Coltrane musing, then rising to power
and resonance, gulping air to continue—
her passion and sense of flawless form—
singing with me, but mostly for the art of dogs.

We joined in many fine songs—"Stardust,"
"Naima," "The Trout," "Jeg elsker Dig," "Perdido."
She was a great master and died young,
leaving me with unrelieved grief,
her talents known only to a few.

Now I have a small dog who does not sing
but listens with discernment, requiring
skill and spirit in my falsetto voice.
When I sing her name and words of love,
Andante, con brio, vivace, adagio,
at times she is so moved she turns
to place her paw across her snout,
closing her eyes, sighing like a girl
I held and danced with years ago.

But I am a pretender to dog music.
Indeed, true strains rise only from
the rich, red chambers of a canine heart;
these melodies best when the moon is up,
listeners and singers together and apart,
beyond friendship and anger,
far from any human imposter—
songs of bones, turds, conquests,
hunts and scents, ballads of
long nights lifting to starlight.

--from Crossing to Sunlight Revisited (2007)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Manohla Dargis

Putting the world in Mr. Damon’s hands is as smart as making him the star of a big special-effects fantasia. At once preternaturally boyish and middle aged (he’s 42), Mr. Damon has become the greatest utility player in movies: No one can better vault across rooftops and in and out of genres and make you care greatly if he falls. He’s so homespun that he could have sprung wholly formed from a corn silo. But it’s the ease and sincerity with which Mr. Damon conveys moral decency — so that it feels as if it originates from deep within rather than from, say, God or country — that helps make him a strikingly contemporary ideal of what used to be regularly called the American character.

-The New York Times, The Worst is Yet to Come (review of Elysium), Aug 8 2013

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


If you love a flower, don’t pick it up.
Because if you pick it up it dies and it ceases to be what you love.
So if you love a flower, let it be.
Love is not about possession.
Love is about appreciation.


Attitude is the difference between an ordeal and an adventure.


Worry is a misuse of your imagination.

Mahatma Gandhi

Seven Deadly Sins

Wealth without work
Pleasure without conscience
Science without humanity
Knowledge without character
Politics without principle
Commerce without morality
Worship without sacrifice.

Mahatma Gandhi

There is nothing that wastes the body like worry, and one who has any faith in God should be ashamed to worry about anything whatsoever.


Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.


Be strong; you never know who you are inspiring.

Eleanor Roosevelt

Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.


When something goes wrong in your life, just yell, "Plot twist!" and move on.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Khmer saying

One can live in a cluttered house. One cannot live with a cluttered heart.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Stacy London

Style is about loving what you've got instead of wishing for what you're not.

Friday, April 26, 2013

David Hume

He is happy whose circumstances suit his temper but he is more excellent who can suit his temper to any circumstances.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

H.L. Mencken

Moral certainty is always a sign of cultural inferiority. The more uncivilized the man, the surer he is that he knows precisely what is right and what is wrong. All human progress, even in morals, has been the work of men who have doubted the current moral values, not of men who have whooped them up and tried to enforce them. The truly civilized man is always skeptical and tolerant, in this field as in all others. His culture is based on "I am not too sure." 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Jimmy Durante

Be awful nice to 'em going up, because you're gonna meet 'em all comin' down. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Dana Becker

Instead of thinking about stress as something outside us, it's now become integral to the self. So the problem of stress has become our own personal predicament to solve, and there's no dearth of advice about how to do this: eat more kale, get some therapy, take a yoga class. The message is: change yourself, change your lifestyle, or learn to adapt to the stress. Consider what it means to accept this way of thinking about stress. If women believe that it's our job to manage the stress of combining paid employment and family work, we're more likely to "de-stress" by putting more bath oil in the bath and less likely to work toward changing family-unfriendly workplace policies or to agitate for universal daycare.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Thomas Edison

We are like tenant farmers chopping down the fence around our house for fuel when we should be using Nature's inexhaustible sources of energy -- sun, wind and tide. ... I'd put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don't have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that. 

Monday, March 11, 2013


Man is most nearly himself when he achieves the seriousness of a child at play. 

Ezra Jack Keats

I love city life. All the beauty that other people see in country life, I find taking walks and seeing the multitudes of people.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Vilhelm Ekelund

To read fast is as bad as to eat in a hurry.