Monthly Archives: May, 2014

The rest of the mind

“True silence is the rest of the mind, and is to the spirit what sleep is to the body, nourishment and refreshment.” — William Penn I can’t remember anyone ever describing me as a quiet person, but even so, I am continually amazed at how noisy the world is becoming.  Jeff and I can hardly …

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Perversely human

“It is a perversely human perception that animals in their native habitat are running wild.” — Robert Brault This quote started me thinking about the terms “wild animals” and “in the wild.”  I concluded that the word “wild” has mutated into a variety of meanings, and is often applied to human behaviors that would never …

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Sunshine, food and medicine

“Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine to the mind.” — Luther Burbank As a person who tends to be cheap frugal, spending money on fresh flowers is something that doesn’t come easily for me.  But the benefits of having them around more than make up for …

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The voice of the sea

“The voice of the sea is seductive; never ceasing, whispering, clamoring, murmuring, inviting the soul to wander for a spell in abysses of solitude; to lose itself in mazes of inward contemplation.” — Kate Chopin The California Coast is wild and beautiful, rocky and cold, pounded relentlessly by crashing surf.  Though much of it is …

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A wonderful position

“I’m in a wonderful position: I’m unknown, I’m underrated, and there’s nowhere to go but up.” ― Pierre S. DuPont IV I loved this quote the moment I saw it, and I thought immediately of how it feels to be a child or a young person.  Though few, if any, children will think in precisely …

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The suffering

Your silent tents of green We deck with fragrant flowers; Yours has the suffering been, The memory shall be ours.    — Henry Wadsworth Longfellow For Earl Glenn Cobeil, his family, and all whose suffering and sacrifice we remember today. One year ago on Memorial Day: Their courage

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Imaginary walking

“One kind of walking which I do not recall seeing mentioned anywhere in the literature of the subject is imaginary walking.” ― Edwin V. Mitchell This post is for Bindu, who took me on an imaginary walk via her blog almost a year ago. A couple of  weeks ago when Matt and I had been …

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An early-rising, hard-working city

“For the people in government, rather than the people who pester it, Washington is an early-rising, hard-working city. It is a popular delusion that the government wastes vast amounts of money through inefficiency and sloth. Enormous effort and elaborate planning are required to waste this much money.” — P. J. O’Rourke Say what you want …

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Recognize each other

“Whether delivering information, opinions, perspectives, dissenting arguments or humorous asides, the human voice is typically open, natural, uncontrived.  People recognize each other as such from the sound of this voice. The Internet is enabling conversations among human beings that were simply not possible in the era of mass media.” — Levine, Locke, Searls & Weinberger, in …

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Mere living

“How good is man’s life, the mere living!” — Robert Browning Can we really comprehend the meaning of the phrase “mere living?” If so, probably never as clearly as when we come face to face with the reality of our life’s inevitable end, whether soon or years from now.  I wish for you today a …

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Colorful beacons

“Flowers are those little colorful beacons of the sun from which we get sunshine when dark, somber skies blanket our thoughts.” — Dodinsky On the Saturday after Matt had open heart surgery, he seemed to be doing well enough that I decided to take Jeff’s suggestion and go down to the Capitol area to visit …

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Utterly unforeseen

“…since life has an agonizing tendency to offer us the best and the worst at the same time, to give us what we ask for in an utterly unforeseen form, even fairly predictable outcomes prove unrecognizable upon arrival.” – Robert Leleux Even on vacation — or maybe I should say “especially on vacation” — things …

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The duty to try

“I suspect that most of the individuals who have religious faith are content with blind faith. They feel no obligation to understand what they believe. They may even wish not to have their beliefs disturbed by thought. But if God in whom they believe created them with intellectual and rational powers, that imposes upon them …

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True elegance

“Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance.” ― Coco Chanel I think it’s interesting that an icon of fashion design such as Chanel would be a spokesperson for simplicity.  In my mind, fashion involves the marketing of endless shoe styles, scarves, purses and costume jewelry, to say nothing of more clothes than the average …

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Anyone who loves

“We love because he first loved us. Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen. And he has given us this command: Anyone who loves God must also …

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You do not need to know

“You do not need to know precisely what is happening, or exactly where it is all going. What you need is to recognize the possibilities and challenges offered by the present moment, and to embrace them with courage, faith and hope.” ― Thomas Merton When a frightening situation arises, my first impulse is to try …

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Fresh and new and beautiful

“A child’s world is fresh and new and beautiful, full of wonder and excitement.  It is our misfortune that for most of us that clear-eyed vision, that true instinct for what is beautiful and awe-inspiring, is dimmed and even lost before we reach adulthood.” — Rachel Carson Grady wants us all to know that in …

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Enjoy, endure, survive

“Would you like to know your future?  If your answer is yes, think again. Not knowing is the greatest life motivator.  So enjoy, endure, survive each moment as it comes to you in its proper sequence — a surprise.” ― Vera Nazarian I’ve often thought what a blessing it is NOT to know what the …

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Where there is no danger

“What kind of man would live where there is no danger? I don’t believe in taking foolish chances. But nothing can be accomplished by not taking a chance at all.” — Charles Lindbergh On this day in 1918, the U. S. Postal Service issued its first airmail stamp.  The price was 24 cents, equal to …

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The strength of the sole

“When you have worn out your shoes, the strength of the sole leather has passed into the fibre of your body.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson Lately I’ve not been able to walk as much as usual, and when I do walk, I notice there’s a difference to my typical rhythms and behaviors.  I’ve been walking …

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At the threshold

“The pressure of adversity is the most powerful sustainer of accountability. It’s as though everything you do is multiplied by 50 in order to surpass those with a head-start. I was never capable of slacking when at the threshold of failure.” ― Criss Jami One year ago, for Mother’s Day, I posted about my mother’s …

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Occupied by jellyfish

“The real world is in a much darker and deeper place than this, and most of it is occupied by jellyfish and things. We just happen to to forget all that. Don’t you agree? Two-thirds of earth’s surface is ocean, and all we can see with the naked eye is the surface: the skin.” ― …

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Forever free

“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” — Frederick Douglass Matt taught himself to read before he started kindergarten, and throughout his elementary school years, his reading tested at several years above grade level.  Given the severity of some of his other learning challenges, including extremely deficient motor planning and poor neurological …

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To west of West

“Lands there are to west of West, Where night is quiet and sleep is rest. Guided by the Lonely Star, Beyond the utmost harbour-bar, I’ll find the heavens fair and free, And beaches of the Starlit Sea. Ship, my ship! I seek the West, And fields and mountains ever blest…” — J. R. R. Tolkien …

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Reasonable and right

“…it is reasonable and right that men should strive to make the useful wares which they produce beautiful just as Nature does; and that they should strive to make the making of them pleasant, just as Nature makes pleasant the exercise of the necessary functions of sentient beings. To apply art to useful wares, in …

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