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Book bits
"This is what you shall do; love the earth & the sun & the animals, despise riches, give alms to everyone that asks, stand up for the stupid & crazy, devote your income & labour to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience & indulgence towards the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown, or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons & with the young, & with the mothers of families, re examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book, & dismiss whatever insults your own soul; & your very flesh shall be a great poem, & have the richest fluency, not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips & face & between the lashes of your eyes & in every motion & joint of your body."
Walt Whitman

"And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, Speak to us of Children.
And he said:
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts.
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of to-morrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth."
The prophet, Kahlil Gibran

"The great mystery is not that we should have been thrown down here at random between the profusion of matter & that of the stars; it is that from our very prison we should draw, from our own selves, images powerful enough to deny our nothingness."
Andre Malraux, La condition humaine (Man's fate)
in order to be old & wise, you must first be young & stupid. (I'm still working on that.)
To the editor
(in response to an anti choice article by Hugo Carl Koch in a Playboy magazine)

'There is only one way in which to get through to Hugo Carl Koch, & I'm working on it. Just as soon as I've developed my powers of witchcraft, I will turn him into a middle-class mother of three pre schoolers.
And on his/her very worst day, when the washing machine has conked out, she's had a fight with her husband, she's received an overdraft notice from the bank, the three year old has flushed his firetruck down the toilet (which is now spilling over into the hall) after tossing her glasses into the the garbage disposal, the two year old has smeared his faeces all over the living room wall & the baby has been crying & vomiting down her back all day - then, I will give her a missed period.'
Shirley L Radl
Pulling our own strings, Gloria Kaufman & Mary-Kay Blakely.

'A doctor pointed out that oestrogen (the female hormone) is at its lowest cycle during the menstrual cycle. So at our 'worst' we are most like the way men are all the time'
Now newsletter, Chicago

'Society consists of human beings, but if human beings have no value, then society has no value.'
Harry Wu, troublemaker

'Modern medicine has not really prolonged life - not REAL life; it has just lengthened the process of dying.'
Out to pasture, Effie Leland Wilder

'No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, & if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.'
Nelson Mandela, Long walk to freedom

'Violence to others is soul abuse; when you hurt others you hurt yourself. The most gorgeous man in the world who deliberately causes the sufferings of anyone, but especially of a woman or a child, becomes hideous.'
Alice Walker, The same river twice

'The character building virtues of self help are regularly preached by those who do not want to give help to those in desperate need.'
Eva Figes, A child at war
in order to be old & wise, you must first be young & stupid. (I'm still working on that.)
'To laugh often & much,
To win the respect of intelligent people
And the affection of children,
To earn the appreciation of honest critics
And to endure the betrayal of false friends,
To appreciate beauty,
To find the best in others,
To leave the world a bit better
Whether by a healthy child, a garden patch
Or a redeemed social condition,
To know even one life has breathed easier
Because you lived
This is to have succeeded.'
Ralph Waldo Emerson

"We stand on a mountain pass in the midst of whirling snows & blinding mist, through which we get glimpses now & then of paths which may be deceptive. If we stand still we shall be frozen to death. If we take the wrong road we shall be dashed to pieces. We do not certainly know whether there is any right one. What must we do? Be strong & of good courage. Act for the best, hope for the best & take what comes...if death ends all, we cannot meet death better."
Fitz James Stephen.
From The courage of conviction, Philip Berman

"An easy life doesn't teach us anything. In the end it’s the learning that matters: what we've learned & how we've grown."
Richard Bach, One.

"Always listen to yourself. It is better to be wrong than simply to follow convention. If you are wrong, no matter, you have learned something and you will grow stronger. If you are right you have taken another step towards a fulfilling life."
The power of one, Bryce Courtenay
in order to be old & wise, you must first be young & stupid. (I'm still working on that.)
"Character comes from following our highest sense of right, from trusting ideals without being sure they'll work. One challenge of our adventures on earth is to rise above dead systems - wars, religions, nations, destructions - to refuse to be a part of them, & express instead the highest selves we know how to be."
"No one can solve problems for someone whose problem is that they don't want problems solved."
"No matter how qualified or deserving we are, we will never reach a better life until we can imagine it for ourselves & allow ourselves to have it."
Richard Bach, One.

“There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one's own safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions.
Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn't, but if he was sane, he had to fly them. If he flew them, he was crazy and didn't have to; but if he didn't want to, he was sane and had to. Yossarian was moved very deeply by the absolute simplicity of this clause of Catch-22 and let out a respectful whistle”
Joseph Heller, Catch 22

"One thing that frequently ticks me off about the wealthy is that they often don’t realise that not everyone has a burning ambition to acquire money & material possessions.
The rich don’t understand this; unless someone has made it his or her mission to die with more toys than anyone else, then he or she is a deadbeat."

Allen Steele. Coyote Horizon.

“Sa’Tong teaches us that, once you accept the fact that God is your own creation instead of the opposite, then you yourself are God, & so is everyone else you may encounter, regardless of their race or origin. That is to say, you are responsible for your own actions, & therefore your own destiny.
We believe that our better nature, that is, our ability to choose a benign course for our actions….is by definition a higher power. Yet such decisions are our own responsibility, not the result of supernatural influence.”
“But then all you’re doing is praying to yourselves.”

“No. We pray to one another, in hopes that those around us will make the correct decisions. We have found that we are more likely to get a response that way.
Through the teachings of the Chaaz’braan, we have learned that Sa’Tong has five codicils. The first codicil, you have already heard…… are God, for God is the creation of the self. The second codicil states that, if you accept this principle, you must also accept the fact that everyone is God & therefore must be treated as such, with the same amount of reverence & respect.
The third codicil states that, in order to obey the second codicil, you must never take any action that will harm others or yourself. Likewise, the fourth codicil forbids any inaction that will lead to others being harmed, or which in turn will do harm to yourself. And the fifth codicil states that wrongful acts must be atoned for with righteous acts of equal or greater proportion.

Accept yourself as your own higher being; respect others as if they are higher beings themselves, do no harm to anyone or to yourself, or tolerate lack of actions which, in turn, will result in harm to yourself or others around you & make amends for your failures.”
Allen Steele. Coyote Horizon
in order to be old & wise, you must first be young & stupid. (I'm still working on that.)
'I am no prophet - & here's no great matter; I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker, & in short, I was afraid. '
T S Eliot

'The only way to avoid all frightening choices is to leave society & become a hermit, & that is a frightening choice.'
Richard Bach, One.

"It is in the brains & soul that lack of money damages you. Mental deadness, spiritual squalor - they seem to descend upon you inescapably when your income drops below a certain point. Faith, hope, money - only a saint could have the first two without having the third."
George Orwell, Keep the aspidistra flying

'Who am I? Do I matter? Does the whakapapa really matter? Yes! Oh yes!
Because it gives me a unison with the universe. It tells me that I am not alone or ever will be. It weaves me into a pattern of life that began at world's creation & will be here till world's end. I am the people who came before me & I am the people who will come after me. Although I will die, the pattern will not be broken. There is no such thing as time passing because I have always been here & will always be here.'
Witi Ihimaera, Gathering of the whakapapa, The new net goes fishing
in order to be old & wise, you must first be young & stupid. (I'm still working on that.)

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