In life, unlike chess, the game continues after checkmate.
Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. We know more about war than we know about peace, more about killing than we know about living. We have grasped the mystery of the atom and rejected the Sermon on the Mount.
I cannot believe that the purpose of life is to be ‘happy.’ I think the purpose of life is to be useful, to be responsible, to be compassionate. It is, above all, to matter and to count, to stand for something, to have made some difference that you lived at all.
You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand.
Love the moment. Flowers grow out of dark moments. Therefore, each moment is vital. It affects the whole. Life is a succession of such moments and to live each, is to succeed.
If you see a whole thing – it seems that it’s always beautiful. Planets, lives…. But close up a world’s all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life’s a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern.
Everything you now do is something you have chosen to do. Some people don’t want to believe that. But if you’re over age twenty-one your life is what you’re making of it. To change your life you need to change your priorities.
However mean your life is, meet it and live it: do not shun it and call it hard names. Cultivate poverty like a garden herb, like sage. Do not trouble yourself much to get new things, whether clothes or friends. Things do not change, we change. Sell your clothes and keep your thoughts.
Our inner world has a reality and a power that can keep us from being victims of circumstance and compel us to take responsibility for our own lives.
The life I touch for good or ill will touch another life, and that in turn another, until who knows where the trembling stops or in what far place my touch will be felt.
Hope is both the earliest and the most indispensable virtue inherent in the state of being alive. If life is to be sustained hope must remain, even where confidence is wounded, trust impaired.
We now know that the human animal is characterized by two great fears that other animals are protected from: the fear of life and the fear of death… Heidegger brought these fears to the center of his existential philosophy. He argued that the basic anxiety of [humanity] is anxiety about being-in-the-world, as well as anxiety of being-in-the-world. That is, both fear of death and fear of life, of experience and individuation.
Grace means more than gifts. In grace something is transcended, once and for all overcome. Grace happens in spite of something; it happens in spite of separateness and alienation. Grace means that life is once again united with life, self is reconciled with self. Grace means accepting the abandoned one. Grace transforms fate into a meaningful vocation. It transforms guilt to trust and courage. The word grace has something triumphant in it.
Three passions have governed my life: The longings for love, the search for knowledge, And unbearable pity for the suffering of [humankind]. Love brings ecstasy and relieves loneliness. In the union of love I have seen In a mystic miniature the prefiguring vision Of the heavens that saints and poets have imagined. With equal passion I have sought knowledge. I have wished to understand the hearts of People. I have wished to know why the stars shine. Love and knowledge led upwards to the heavens, But always pity brought me back to earth; Cries of pain reverberated in my heart Of children in famine, of victims tortured And of old people left helpless. I long to alleviate the evil, but I cannot, And I too suffer. This has been my life; I found it worth living.