“This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to everyone that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward 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 and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body…”—~ Walt Whitman
“So the tree rustles in the evening, when we stand uneasy before our own childish thoughts. Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness.”—Hermann Hesse
“Real silence is explosive; it is not the dead state of mind that spiritual seekers think. This is volcanic in its nature; it’s bubbling all the time—the energy, the life—that is its quality.”—U.G. Krishnamurti
“Science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality. When we recognize our place in an immensity of light-years and in the passage of ages, when we grasp the intricacy, beauty, and subtlety of life, then that soaring feeling, that sense of elation and humility combined, is surely spiritual. So are our emotions in the presence of great art or music or literature, or acts of exemplary selfless courage such as those of Mohandas Gandhi or Martin Luther King, Jr. The notion that science and spirituality are somehow mutually exclusive does a disservice to both.”—~ Carl Sagan
That night you wrote me, write a novel about me someday when you’re married to some rich successful man, tell your children the tale of us, and I thought, don’t come to me thinking it’s over.
Sometimes I re-read these things I wrote years ago. It’s a strange sensation, a sort of autopsy. I can almost remember how it felt but the time has dimmed it, and you, enough that the only real memory and feeling that I have left are the things I put down on the paper all those years ago. Things I thought would tear at me always are nothing more than another story.
“Divided, how can one pray? How can one pray when another oneself would be listening to the prayer?—That is why one should only pray in unknown words. Render enigma to enigma, enigma for enigma. Lift what is mystery in yourself to what is mystery in itself. There is something in you that is equal to what surpasses you.”— Paul Valéry, from “How Calm the Hour Is” in Selected Writings, trans. Louise Varèse (thanks Time Immemorial)