I am not the champion of lost causes, but the champion of causes not yet won.

Norman Thomas

A plaque in the Norman Thomas '05 Library at Princeton University's Forbes College

Wisdom 1

Thomas More: Why not be a teacher?
You'd be a fine teacher. Perhaps, a great one.

Richard Rich: And if I was who would know it?

Thomas More: You, your pupils, your friends, God.
Not a bad public, that.

Robert Bolt

Source: A Man For All Seasons

Wisdom 2

We old scientists never die,
we just evolve into a new theory.

Walt Hopkins

Wisdom 3

Is a danger to be trusting one another,
One will seldom want to do what other wishes;
But unless someday somebody trust somebody
There'll be nothing left on earth excepting fishes!

Oscar Hammerstein II

Source: A Puzzlement, from The King and I

Wisdom 4

Thomas More: And go he should if he was the Devil himself until he broke the law!

Will Roper: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law!

More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

Roper: I'd cut down every law in England to do that!

More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you—where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast—Man's laws, not God's—and if you cut them down—and you're just the man to do it—d'you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake.

Robert Bolt

Source: A Man For All Seasons

Wisdom 5

If we are going to discuss ethical questions we
must begin by giving the devil fair play. . . .
England never does. We always assume that the
devil is guilty; and we wont allow him to prove his
innocence, because it would be against public
morals if he succeeded. We used to do the same
with prisoners accused of high treason. And the
consequence is that we overreach ourselves;
and the devil gets the better of us after all.
Perhaps thats what most of us intend him to do.

George Bernard Shaw

Source: Getting Married

Comment: spoken in this play by the Bishop of Chelsea (with contractions spelt by Shaw!)

Wisdom 6

We old mathematicians never die,
we just shift to another dimension.

Walt Hopkins

Wisdom 7

Blessed are the mad
for they reason without logic.

Luigi Pirandello

Source: Henry IV

Comment: Also translated as: "Madmen, lucky folk! construct without logic, or rather with a logic that flies like a feather."

Wisdom 8

I'm not a teacher: only a fellow-traveller
of whom you asked the way. I pointed ahead—
ahead of myself as well as of you.

George Bernard Shaw

Source: Getting Married

Comment: spoken in this play by the Bishop of Chelsea

Wisdom 9

I learned this, at least, by my experiment;
that if one advances confidently in the
direction of his dreams, and endeavors to
live the life which he has imagined, he will meet
with a success unexpected in common hours.

Henry David Thoreau

Source: Walden

Wisdom 10

Mental health is based on a certain degree of tension,
the tension between what one has already achieved
and what one still ought to accomplish, or the gap
between what one is and what one should become.

Viktor Frankl

Source: Man's Search For Meaning

Wisdom 11

And did you get what
you wanted from this life, even so?
I did.
And what did you want?
To call myself beloved, to feel myself
beloved on the earth.

Raymond Carver

Source: "Late Fragment" in A New Path to the Waterfall

Wisdom 12

If you have built castles in the air,
your work need not be lost;
that is where they should be.
Now put the foundations under them.

Henry David Thoreau

Source: Walden

Wisdom 13

Man's painful desire to communicate without coalescing.

Clifton Fadiman

Comment: This is in my 1950's card file; if you know the source, please let me know.

Wisdom 14

I went to the woods because I wished to live
deliberately, to front only the essential
facts of life, and see if I could not learn
what it had to teach, and not, when I came
to die, discover that I had not lived.

Henry David Thoreau

Source: Walden

Wisdom 15

Every journey has a secret destination
of which the traveler is unaware.

Martin Buber

Source: Quoted by Dan Millman in The Journeys of Socrates

Wisdom 16

Overcoming poverty is not an act of charity—
it is an act of justice.

Nelson Mandela

Source: Speaking at the Make Poverty History rally in Trafalgar Square in London on 3 February 2005

Wisdom 17

Your playing small doesn't serve the world. There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. . . . And as we let our own light shine, we subconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we're liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

Marianne Williamson

Source: A Return To Love

Wisdom 18

We do not solve our local conflicts by killing our neighbours. So it ought to be with international conflict if we think of ourselves, first of all,
as global citizens responsible for building
a just and peaceful global community.

Bruce Kent

Source: Chair of the Movement for the Abolition of War

Wisdom 19

The makers of our constitution . . . conferred, as against the Government, the right to be let alone—the most comprehensive of rights, and the right most valued by civilized man.

Louis Brandeis

Source: Justice Louis Brandeis, Olmstead v. United States, 1928.

Wisdom 20

You consider war to be inevitable? Very good. Let every one who advocates war be enrolled in a special regiment of advance-guards, for the front of every storm, of every attack, to lead them all!

Alphonse Karr

Source: Quoted in Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

Wisdom 21

This is our cry
This is our prayer
Peace in the world

Sadako's Monument in Hiroshima

Comment: Children raised money for this Children's Monument to Sadako, the girl of the Thousand Cranes

Wisdom 22

Our way of ensemble playing is not that someone leads and everyone else just follows. . . .
everyone is thinking towards a central point. . . .
We don't follow each other; we play together.

David Soyer

Source: The Art of Quartet Playing: The Guarneri Quartet in Conversation with David Blum

Wisdom 23

Blending careful preparation
with informed improvisation.

Walt Hopkins

Comment: My top skill, refined after defining and setting priorities on more than a thousand skills with Dick Bolles at the 1977 Parachute two-week workshop.

Wisdom 24

Our government is the potent, the omnipresent teacher. For good or ill it teaches the whole people by its example. . . . Crime is contagious. If the Government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy. To declare that in the administration of the criminal law the end justifies the means—to declare that the Government may commit crimes in order to secure the conviction of a private criminal—would bring terrible retribution

Louis Brandeis

Source: Justice LOUIS D. BRANDEIS, dissenting, Olmstead et al. v. United States, 277 U.S. 485 (1928).

Wisdom 25

We no longer fight major battles over minor points.

David Soyer

Source: The Art of Quartet Playing: The Guarneri Quartet in Conversation with David Blum

Comment: David Soyer is cellist of the Guarneri Quartet

Wisdom 26

When my father was alive, I thought of him as being at home. Now that he has died, I think of him as being everywhere.

George Simons

Comment: This is what George said to me the night that my father died—and it has stayed with me over the years since.

Wisdom 27

Something there is that doesn't love a wall,
that wants it down.

Robert Frost

Source: "Mending Wall" from The Complete Poems of Robert Frost

Wisdom 28

One of the new things people began to find out
in the last century was that thoughts—just mere
thoughts—are as powerful as electric batteries—
as good for one as sunlight is, or as bad for one as
poison. To let a sad thought or a bad one get into
your mind is as dangerous as letting a scarlet
fever germ get into your body.

Frances Hodgson Burnett

Source: The Secret Garden

Comment: In 1911, Burnett popularised the work of William James and opened up the path to Appreciative Inquiry.

Wisdom 29

At first people refuse to believe
that a strange new thing can be done,
then they begin to hope it can be done,
then they see it can be done—
then it is done
and all the world wonders why
it was not done centuries ago.

Frances Hodgson Burnett

Source: The Secret Garden

Wisdom 30

One should let the quick live quickly
and the slow slowly,
each by his distinct temporal measure.

Sten Nadolny

Source: The Discovery of Slowness

Wisdom 31

Freedom. One had it if one didn't have to tell others ahead of time what one planned to do. Or if one kept quiet about it.
Half a freedom: if one had to announce one's plans ahead of time.
Slavery: if others could foretell what one would do.

Sten Nadolny

Source: The Discovery of Slowness

Wisdom 32

The ability to move an idea
from my mind to your mind
and to move you with the idea.

W. Dean Hopkins

Wisdom 33

We can either get ready to go or we can go.
We cannot do both.

Harriet Hopkins

Comment: My mother probably first said this while trying to get all five of us chldren ready for something!

Wisdom 34

The last temptation is the greatest treason:
To do the right deed for the wrong reason.

T. S. Eliot

Source: Murder in the Cathedral

Wisdom 35

Then let us pray that come it may,
(As come it will for a' that,)
That Sense and Worth, o'er a' the earth,
Shall bear the gree, an' a' that.
For a' that, an' a' that,
It's coming yet for a' that,
That Man to Man, the world o'er,
Shall brothers be for a' that.

Robert Burns

Source: A Man's A Man for A' That

Wisdom 36

Ah, what a dusty answer gets the soul
When hot for certainties in this our life!

George Meredith

Source: Modern Love (1862)

Wisdom 37

Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

(The more things change, the more they are the same.)

Alphonse Karr

Source: Les Guêpes (January 1849)

Wisdom 38

The best laid schemes o' mice an' men
Gang aft agley.

Robert Burns

Source: To A Mouse (1786)

Wisdom 39

Far too many relied on the classic formula of
a beginning, a muddle, and an end.

Philip Larkin

Source: New Fiction (1978)

Comment: Of the books entered for the 1977 Booker Prize

Wisdom 40

I finished that book before the author did.

Sonia Nevis

Source: Sonia said this to me one day when I was lamenting not having finished a book.

Wisdom 41

The test of a vocation is the love of the drudgery it involves.

Logan Pearsall Smith

Source: Afterthoughts (1931)

Wisdom 42

Books say: she did this because.
Life says: she did this.
Books are where things are explained to you;
life is where things aren't.

Julian Barnes

Source: Flaubert's Parrot (1984)

Wisdom 43

Since we know our own experience with dangerous opportunities,
we do not expect him to be perfect. But we do wish for him, for you, and for us
the courage to risk toward the good at each dangerous opportunity.

Walt Hopkins

Source: Annual Letter for 1976

Comment: This was originally about President Carter, but could be applied to any of us who are facing a crisis, a word the Chinese create from danger and opportunity.

Wisdom 44

May your own dreams be your only boundaries.

Ossie Davis

Source: Purlie

Wisdom 45

A crank is a piece of
simple technology that
creates revolutions.

E. F. Schumacher

Source: Small World: published by Practical Action at www.practicalaction.org

Wisdom 46

I always have a quotation for everything—it saves original thinking.

Dorothy L. Sayers

Comment: Said whimsically by Lord Peter Wimsey in the novel Have HIs Carcase

Wisdom 47

If you want things to stay as they are,
things will have to change.

Giuseppe di Lampedusa

Source: The Leopard (1957)

Wisdom 48

You can't step twice into the same river.


Source: Plato's Cratylus

Wisdom 49

There is no such thing as a conflict that can't be ended.
Conflicts are created, conducted, and sustained by human beings.
They can be ended by human beings.

George Mitchell

Source: Speaking at his appointment as US Middle East Envoy on 22 January 2009

Wisdom 50

“Every man is in certain respects
(a) like all other men,
(b) like some other men,
(c) like no other man.”

Henry Murray and Clyde Kluckhohn

Source: Personality in Nature, Society, and Culture (1948)

Wisdom 51

Some books are to be tasted,
others to be swallowed,
and some few to be chewed and digested.

Francis Bacon

Source: "Of Studies" in Essays (1625

Wisdom 52

We old pilots never die,
we just move to another plane.

Walt Hopkins

Wisdom 53

We had the experience but missed the meaning,
And approach to the meaning restores the experience
In a different form, beyond any meaning
We can assign to happiness.

T. S. Eliot

Source: "The Dry Salvages" from "The Four Quartets"

Wisdom 54

The future is not a result of choices among
alternative paths offered by the present, but a
place that is created—created first in the mind
and will, created next in activity. The future is
not some place we are going to, but one we
are creating. The paths are not to be found,
but made, and the activity of making them,
changes both the maker and the destination.

John Schaar

Source: Unknown; please let me know if you know the source.

Comment: This is a great description of Appreciative Inquiry.

Wisdom 55

Happiness makes up in height for what it lacks in length.

Robert Frost

Source: Title of a poem

Wisdom 56

The platform is like a rough plank theater-stage
Built on the brow of the promontory: as if our blood had labored
all around the earth from Asia
To play its mystery before strict judges at last, the final ocean
and sky to prove our nature
More Shining than that of the other animals. It Is rather ignoble
in its quiet times, mean in its pleasures,
Slavish in the mass; but at stricken moments it can shine terribly
against the dark magnificence of things.

Robinson Jeffers

Source: Concluding lines of "Thurso's Landing"

Wisdom 57

Human kind cannot bear very much reality.

T. S. Eliot

Source: "Burnt Norton" in "Four Quartets" AND "Murder in the Cathedral"

Comment: Eliot must have thought this was important enough to say twice!

Wisdom 58

Words strain,
Crack and sometimes break, under the burden,
Under the tension, slip, slide, perish,
Decay with imprecision, will not stay in place,
Will not stay still.

T. S. Eliot

Source: "Burnt Norton" in "Four Quartets"

Wisdom 59

Time past and time future
What might have been and what has been
Point to one end which is always present.

T. S. Eliot

Source: "Burnt Norton" in "Four Quartets"

Wisdom 60

"Begin at the beginning," the King said, gravely,
"and go on till you come to the end:
then stop."

Lewis Carroll

Source: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1865)

Wisdom 61

Art is the imposing of a pattern on experience,
and our aesthetic enjoyment is recognition of the pattern.

Alfred North Whitehead

Source: Dialogues (1954)

Wisdom 62

Of making many books there is no end;
and much study is a weariness of the flesh.

Ecclesiastes 12:12

Wisdom 63

It ain't over till it's over.

Yogi Berra

Wisdom 64

We are the ones we have been waiting for

June Jordan

Source: from her "Poem for South African Women"

Comment: And now the title of a book by June Jordan's friend Alice Walker

Wisdom 65

Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.

Langston Hughes

Source: This is his poem entitled Dreams. From The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes published by Alfred A. Knopf/Vintage. Copyright © 1994 by The Estate of Langston Hughes.

Wisdom 66

There must be a beginning of any great matter,
but the continuing unto the end
until it be thoroughly finished
yields the true glory.

Francis Drake

Source: Dispatch to Sir Francis Walsingham on 17 May 1587

Wisdom 67

Absence diminishes commonplace passions
and increases great ones,
as the wind extinguishes candles and kindles fire.

François de La Rochefoucauld

Source: Maxims (1678)

Wisdom 68

We old historians never die,
we just fade into another primary source.

Walt Hopkins

Wisdom 69

The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in
insidious encroachment by men of zeal,
well-meaning but without understanding.

Louis Brandeis

Source: Justice LOUIS D. BRANDEIS, dissenting, Olmstead v. United States, 277 U.S. 479 (1928).

Wisdom 70

Never doubt the ability of a few people
to change the world.
Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.

Margaret Mead

Source: There is no written source for this. A website created by her friends says that Margaret Mead often said this but never wrote it down.

Wisdom 71

If you make mistakes, even serious mistakes, there is always another chance for you. And supposing you have tried and failed again and again, you may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing that we call “failure” is not the falling down, but the staying down.

Mary Pickford

Wisdom 72

In any profession, the pattern of assignments you work on IS the professional development process—you just have to learn how to manage it.

David Maister

Wisdom 73

The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.

Albert Einstein

Wisdom 74

The place God calls you to is the place
where your deep gladness
and the world's deep hunger

Frederick Buechner

Wisdom 75

Dediquemonos a ser padres del futuro—
porque ya somos hijos del pasado.

Let us commit ourselves to parent the future—
we are already the past's children.

Miguel de Unamuno

Wisdom 76

Although we know
the end of the maze holds death,
I see now that
the path I choose through the maze
makes me what I am.

Daniel Keyes

Source: Flowers for Algernon

Wisdom 77

All shall be well
and all shall be well
and all manner of things shall be well

Julian of Norwich

Wisdom 78

1. Have I worn it or used it in the past year?
Yes: keep it.
No: go to question 2.

2. Does it have legal or sentimental value?
Yes: keep it.
No: go to question 3.

3. Might it come in handy someday?

Stephanie Winston

Source: Getting Organized

Comment: These 3 questions hang inside most of my cupboard doors; the third question keeps me from drowning in things.

Wisdom 79

There is some necessity for being, or learning to be, in some degree independent of what anyone thinks of you, even the person for whom you care most. You have to think so well of yourself that in the end you cannot continue to care in the same degree for a person who does not care for you. The paradox is that when you have learned this to a certain extent it sometimes works out that you are a better person and more cared for by the other person.

W. Dean Hopkins

Comment: Dad wrote this to me more than 40 years ago when my girlfriend broke up with me. It's still true.

Wisdom 80

A man needs a little madness—or else
he never dares cut the rope and be free.

Nikos Kazantzakis

Source: Zorba the Greek

Wisdom 81

If happiness is activity in accordance with excellence, it is reasonable that it should be in accordance with the highest excellence.


Wisdom 82

If one tells the truth, one is sure, sooner or later,
to be found out.

Oscar Wilde

Wisdom 83

Every exit is an entrance somewhere else.

Tom Stoppard

Wisdom 84

I have given before to this group the definition of happiness of the Greeks, and I will define it again: it is full use of your powers
along lines of excellence.

John F. Kennedy

Wisdom 85

You can’t get there from not here.

Richard Moon

Source: Quoted in The Peace Book by Louise Diamond

Comment: Richard Moon is an Aikido Master

Wisdom 86

We are aware that blaming and arguing never help us and only create a wider gap between us, that only understanding, trust and love can help us change and grow.

Thich Nhat Hanh

Wisdom 87

Always keep Ithaca fixed in your mind.
To arrive there is your ultimate goal.
But do not hurry the voyage at all.
It is better to let it last for long years;
and even to anchor at the isle when you are old,
rich with all that you have gained on the way,
not expecting that Ithaca will offer you riches.

Ithaca has given you the beautiful voyage.
Without her you would never have taken the road.
But she has nothing more to give you.

And if you find her poor, Ithaca has not defrauded you.
With the great wisdom you have gained, with so much experience,
you must surely have understood by then what Ithacas mean.

C. P. Cavafy

Source: "Ithaca" from The Complete Poems of Cavafy

Comment: Translated by Rae Dalven

Wisdom 88

If you want to be creative, stay in part a child, with the creativity and invention that characterizes children before they are deformed by adult society.

Jean Piaget

Wisdom 89

Just as the wave cannot exist for itself, but is ever a part of the heaving surface of the ocean, so must I never live my life for itself, but always in the experience which is going on around me. It is an uncomfortable doctrine which the true ethics whisper into my ear. You are happy, they say; therefore you are called upon to give much.

Albert Schweitzer

Wisdom 90

It is only when you have nothing to say
that everyone agrees with you.

Daniel Barenboim

Source: 25 Mar 05 interview on Radio 4

Wisdom 91

A goal is a dream taken seriously.

Walt Hopkins

Wisdom 92

When you start on your journey to Ithaca,
then pray that the road is long,
full of adventure, full of knowledge.

C. P. Cavafy

Wisdom 93

Compassion is the sometimes fatal capacity for feeling what it is like to live inside somebody else's skin. It is the knowledge that there can never really be any peace and joy for me until there is peace and joy finally for you too.

Frederick Buechner

Wisdom 94

We must love them both, those whose opinions we share and those whose opinions we reject.
For both have labored in the search for truth
and both have helped us in the finding of it.

Thomas Aquinas

Comment: With thanks to Mary Lou Michael, who first showed me this wisdom.

Wisdom 95

It is too easy rebelling against others;
you have to rebel against yourself.

Pierre Boulez

Wisdom 96

Why not?

Jeremy Leven

Source: Screenwriter of *Don Juan de Marco*

Wisdom 97

They constantly try to escape
From the darkness outside and within
By dreaming of systems so perfect
that no one will need to be good.

T. S. Eliot

Source: Choruses from "The Rock" VI

Wisdom 98

The ultimate most holy form of theory is action.

Nikos Kazantzakis

Wisdom 99

Ah, when to the heart of man
Was it ever less than a treason
To go with the drift of things,
To yield with a grace to reason,
And bow and accept the end
Of a love or a season?

Robert Frost

Source: From his poem "Reluctance"

Wisdom 100

He either fears his fate too much
Or his deserts are small
That dares not put it to the touch
To win or lose it all


Wisdom 101

My voyages are my native land.

Nikos Kazantzakis

Comment: This is what Odysseus says as he sets out on his voyages again in Kazantakis's monumental "The Odyssey: A Modern Sequel"

Wisdom 102

What Needs Doing?

1. What needs doing that I alone in the universe can do?

2. What needs doing that I can ask someone else to do and then check on the result?

3. What needs doing that I can ask someone else to do and then forget about?

via Ed Mayhew

Wisdom 103

You've heard of people calling in sick. You may have called in sick a few times yourself. But have you ever thought of calling in well?

It'd go like this: You'd get the boss on the line and say, "Listen, I've been sick ever since I started working here, but today I'm well and I won't be in anymore."

Call in well.

Tom Robbins

Wisdom 104

Que bonito es no hacer nada,
y luego descansar.

How beautiful it is do nothing,
and then rest afterward.

Spanish proverb

Wisdom 105

There are only a few things to learn.
And it takes forever.

W. A. Mathieu

Comment: Mathieu was speaking of music; it applies to most other things as well

Wisdom 106

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are
powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness,
that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?

Marianne Williamson

Source: A Return To Love

Wisdom 107

How many coaches does it take
to change a lightbulb?

Only one.

But the lightbulb really has to
want to change.

Unknown wise person

Wisdom 108

We say in Africa, "A person is a person through other persons." We are made for togetherness. We are made for friendship. We are made for fellowship. We are different precisely to know our need of one another.

Desmond Tutu

Wisdom 109

Peace will
Peace will come
And let it begin with me

Tom Paxton

Wisdom 110

There's wiser eating grass.

A Scottish shepherd's comment on gullible people

Source: via David Alexander

Wisdom 111

Let me drop everything
and work on your problem.

Unknown kind person

Source: Seen by Maarten Thissen on the T shirt of a man named Chainsaw, working as a roadie to Melissa Etheridge

Wisdom 112

When you come to a fork in the road,
take it.

Yogi Berra

Wisdom 113

Oh how this spring of love resembleth
The uncertain glory of an April day
That now shows all the beauty of the sun
And by and by a cloud takes all away.

William Shakespeare

Source: Two Gentlemen of Verona

Comment: "The uncertain glory of an April day" is my favourite Shakespearean line

Wisdom 114

We old English teachers never die,
we just lapse into a comma.

Walt Hopkins

Source: With thanks to Lynne Truss, author of "Eats, Shoots & Leaves

Wisdom 115

We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.

T. S. Eliot

Source: Four Quartets: LIttle Gidding

Wisdom 116

I am not young enough to know everything.

J. M. Barrie

Source: "The Admirable Crichton"

Comment: Spoken by Ernest in Act I. This is my way of apologising to all those people that I irritated when I was still young enough to know everything.

Wisdom 117

You can observe a lot by watching.

Yogi Berra

Wisdom 118

What we call the beginning is often the end
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
The end is where we start from.

T. S. Eliot

Wisdom 119

Ubuntu ungamntu ngabanye abantu.

People are people through other people.

Xhosa proverb

Wisdom 120

You can fall—but you must not lie down.

Dougie MacLean

Wisdom 121

The last of the human freedoms—
to choose one's attitude
in any given set of circumstances;
to choose one's own way.

Viktor Frankl

Source: Man's Search For Meaning

Wisdom 122

Only connect! That was the whole of her sermon. Only connect the prose and the passion, and both will be exalted, and human love will be seen at its height. Live in fragments no longer. Only connect, and the beast and the monk, robbed of the isolation that is life to either, will die.

E. M. Forster

Wisdom 123

Peace is the only passion
that includes in its dreams
the happiness of everyone else.

Walt Hopkins

Comment: With thanks to Alphonse Karr, who said: "Love is the most terrible, and also the most generous of the passions; it is the only one that includes in its dreams the happiness of some one else."

Wisdom 124

To attain knowledge, add something every day.

To attain wisdom, remove something every day.

Lao Tzu

Wisdom 125

In many shamanic societies, if you came to a shaman or medicine person complaining of being disheartened, dispirited, or depressed, they would ask you one of four questions: When did you stop dancing? When did you stop singing? When did you stop being enchanted by stories? When did you stop finding comfort in the sweet territory of silence?

Where we stopped dancing, singing, being enchanted by stories, or finding comfort in silence is where we have experienced the loss of soul. Dancing, singing, storytelling, and silence are the four universal salves.

Angeles Arrien

Wisdom 126

Try a thing you haven’t done three times.
Once, to get over the fear of doing it.
Twice, to learn how to do it.
And a third time, to figure out
whether you like it or not.

Virgil Thomson

Comment: Advice given at age 93

Wisdom 127

To live is so startling
it leaves little time for anything else.

Emily Dickinson

Wisdom 128

"Men work together," I told him from the heart,
"Whether they work together or apart."

Robert Frost

Source: "The Tuft of Flowers" from The Complete Poems of Robert Frost

Wisdom 129

Momentum is more important than position.

David Osborne

Wisdom 130

Nothing worth doing is completed in our lifetime; therefore we must be saved by hope.

Nothing true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history; therefore we must be saved by faith.

Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone;
therefore we are saved by love.

Reinhold Niebuhr

Wisdom 131

God, give us grace to accept with serenity
the things that cannot be changed,
courage to change
the things that should be changed,
and the wisdom to distinguish
the one from the other.

Reinhold Niebuhr

Source: This is the original version of Niebuhr's prayer. Unlike the watered-down version that talks only of things that CAN be changed, the original seeks to change the things that SHOULD be changed. That does take courage.

Wisdom 132

Learning is not a spectator sport.

Donald Blocher

Wisdom 133

If we wish to secure peace for ourselves,
we must start by championing it for others.

Dalai Lama

Wisdom 134

Children must be taught how to think,
not what to think.

Margaret Mead

Wisdom 135

And what else?

Rosemary Hopkins

Source: Our conversation the night we first met.

Comment: This is Rosemary's response when a client says to her: "I'm an INFP" or "I'm a manic-depressive" or "I'm disabled" or any other single label that limits rather than expands the possibilties.