So it goes.

Good day, pusscake.

Time discovers truth.

It's not rocket surgery.

Wisdom begins in wonder.

We'll do it live! Fuck it!

Stay hungry. Stay foolish.

Only the educated are free.

I am, therefore I'll think.

Action expresses priorities.

Fuck you, donuts are awesome!

Smile, breathe and go slowly.

There is timing in everything.

Whatever you are, be a good one.

Be in harmony, yet be different.

Who is rich? He that is content.

Reality continues to ruin my life.

Imagination is the eye of the soul.

Never, never, never, never give up.

To be great is to be misunderstood.

It takes a long time to grow young.

To regret deeply is to live afresh.

No great thing is created suddenly.

Smile, it increases your face value.

Do I dare
Disturb the universe?

I love to travel, but hate to arrive.

Why do you exist? What motivates you?

Worry is a waste of emotional reserve.

Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn.

Without music, life would be a mistake.

Pain is certain, suffering is optional.

Fixed formation is bad. Study this well.

Wherever you go, go with all your heart.

I'm not young enough to know everything.

Time you enjoyed wasting was not wasted.

The unexamined life is not worth living.

Reality leaves a lot to the imagination.

Step by step walk the thousand-mile road.

Have the courage to live. Anyone can die.

If you're going through hell, keep going.

It always seems impossible until its done.

To see things in the seed, that is genius.

This above all, to thine own self be true.

Maybe I'll just sit here and bleed at you.

Genius is only a superior power of seeing.

Speak only if it improves upon the silence.

It's only work if somebody makes you do it.

Be the change you wish to see in the world.

Only those who are asleep make no mistakes.

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.

Have a healthy disregard for the impossible.

My friend is one who takes me for what I am.

What does not destroy me, makes me stronger.

If you win the rat race, you're still a rat.

And we will hustle hustle hustle to be free.

I'm retired, I invented dice. What do you do?

I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells.

I never went to film school; I went to films.

We love the things we love for what they are.

This world is but canvas to our imaginations.

If you want to get nowhere, follow the crowd.

A(B + C) = AB + AC. Politicize that, bitches.

Watch out for cheetahs! This is cheetah turf!

A friend is one before whom I may think aloud.

I cannot afford to waste my time making money.

Every man dies ― Not every man really lives.

To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.

From now on, I'll connect the dots my own way.

Misery is almost always the result of thinking.

There is more to life than increasing its speed.

Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.

A day without sunshine is like, you know, night.

Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience.

It is by acts, and not by ideas that people live.

No law can be sacred to me but that of my nature.

Those who believe in telekinetics, raise my hand.

Tis nothing good or bad. But thinking makes it so.

What we learn inwardly, will change outer reality.

Things won are done, joy's soul lies in the doing.

I'd like to live as a poor man with lots of money.

If you obey all the rules, you'll miss all the fun.

Ask what's possible, not what's wrong. Keep asking.

I try to make everyone's day a little more surreal.

Without great solitude no serious work is possible.

The best way to predict the future is to invent it.

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.

There is no way to Happiness. Happiness is the way.

To hell with circumstances. I create opportunities.

Any fool can make a rule, and any fool will mind it.

O for a life of Sensations rather than of Thoughts!

Freedom is what you do with what's been done to you.

The heart has its reasons that reason does not know.

Anyone who fights for the future, lives in it today.

Everything is amazing right now, and nobody's happy.

A ship is safe at shore but it's not built for that.

Men for the sake of getting a living forget to live.

Everything has been figured out, except how to live.

I have a bachelor's in kicking ass and taking names.

Let us consider the way in which we spend our lives.

It is never too late to be what you might have been.

The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.

History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.

I liked things better when I didn't understand them.

We have a 'strategic' plan. It's called doing things.

But the eyes are blind. One must look with the heart.

Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.

Put your ear down close to your soul and listen hard.

Life is to be defeated by greater and greater things.

The world is your playground. Why aren't you playing?

The time to relax is when you don't have time for it.

We are always getting ready to live but never living.

Be brave enough to start a conversation that matters.

Let him that would move the world first move himself.

Happiness isn't good enough for me. I demand euphoria.

Computers are useless. They can only give you answers.

Being entirely honest with oneself is a good exercise.

Great is the man who has not lost his childlike heart.

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.

An early-morning walk is a blessing for the whole day.

I go to school, but I never learn what I want to know.

Practice not-doing and everything will fall into place.

Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened.

It is not the answer that enlightens, but the question.

To believe in something, and not live it, is dishonest.

Happiness is the absence of the striving for happiness.

Think lightly of yourself and think deeply of the world.

Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes.

Hate me if you must, but please do not misunderstand me.

Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify.

There's never enough time to do all the nothing you want.

The world is more like it is now then it ever has before.

Even If I am a minority of one, truth is still the truth.

It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.

We should feel sorrow, but not sink under its oppression.

Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.

He who looks outside, dreams; he who looks inside, awakes.

I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.

Man can do what he wills but he cannot will what he wills.

That it will never come again is what makes life so sweet.

I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.

People are just as happy as they make up their minds to be.

The most successful people are those who are good at plan B.

To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.

Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.

Traveler, there is no path.
Paths are made by walking.

Beauty and grace are performed whether or not we sense them.

Once in a while you have to take a break and visit yourself.

How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.

I am very fond of sunsets. Come, let us go look at a sunset.

We regret the things we don't do more than the things we do.

I know but one freedom, and that is the freedom of the mind.

I have only one doctrine, the infinitude of the private man.

A ship is safe in harbor, but that's not what ships are for.

Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be. Be one.

Lives, like money, are spent. What are you buying with yours?

What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.

In the end, we are our choices. Build yourself a great story.

The secret to happiness is short-term, stupid self-interest!

Don't expect anything. Erase all life expectancies. Just live.

If you are not too long, I will wait here for you all my life.

The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge.

We arrive at truth, not by reason only, but also by the heart.

I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.

Some people are so afraid to die that they never begin to live.

We live only to discover beauty. All else is a form of waiting.

It's not denial. I'm just selective about the reality I accept.

The direction of the mind is more important than its progress.

Life is a succession of moments. To live each one is to succeed.

He who hesitates is not only lost, but miles from the next exit.

The older you get, the more important it is not to act your age.

Education's purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one.

Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.

Here we are, trapped in the amber of the moment. There is no why.

Here is a guaranteed way to get more of what you want: want less.

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.

I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.

What everyone wants from life is continuous and genuine happiness.

It takes courage to grow up and turn out to be who you really are.

Men live in a world of abundance but exist in a world of scarcity.

To find life's treasures, the only way is to plunge into the abyss

It's not about how life treats you, it's about how you treat life.

Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is an absurd one.

Don't tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you traveled.

Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.

Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don't lose faith.

A house can have integrity, just like a person, and just as seldom.

The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.

Do not take life too seriously. You will never get out of it alive.

I fly because it releases my mind from the tyranny of petty things.

The person attempting to travel two roads at once will get nowhere.

A good traveller has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.

Sometimes we have to choose between what is right and what is easy.

Learning to ignore things is one of the great paths to inner peace.

It is human nature to think wisely and to act in an absurd fashion.

How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.

Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.

You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.

In summary, life is too fragile and I describe that as 'sucks ahoy!'

Every man I meet is my superior in some way. In that I learn of him.

The search for happiness is one of the chief sources of unhappiness.

There are many things of which a wise man might wish to be ignorant.

A man can achieve peace if he learns to let go, he learns to let go.

Never put off until tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow.

If a man only likes victory he must always come late for the battle.

Unable to make what is just strong, we have made what is strong just.

Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

A liberal is a man too broadminded to take his own side in a quarrel.

The whole universe is change and life itself is but what you deem it.

Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.

If you want to know where your heart is, look where your mind wanders.

It turns out that there is something that can compete with free: easy.

The difference between fiction and reality? Fiction has to make sense.

The problem with the future is that it keeps turning into the present.

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.

We are disturbed not by events, but by the views which we take of them.

Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.

Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.

A lot of people never use their initiative because no one told them to.

Play for more than you can afford to lose and you will learn the game.

I have complete faith in the continued absurdity of whatever's going on.

All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.

The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me.

Good judgment comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgment.

The traveler sees what he sees, the tourist sees what he has come to see.

Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.

To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.

I've learned that making a living is not the same thing as making a life.

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.

If fifty million people say a foolish thing, it is still a foolish thing.

First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do.

I'm sorry this letter is so long; I didn't have time to write a short one.

When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.

Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.

All people are different. That's why everybody should be treated the same.

It's the magic of risking everything for a dream that nobody sees but you.

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.

Let us so live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sorry.

To the world you may be one person but to one person, you may be the world.

What is flirtatiousness but an argument that life must go on and on and on?

It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.

Men make counterfeit money; in many more cases, money makes counterfeit men.

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.

Everything passes, everything changes. Just do what you think you should do.

Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go.

If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right.

Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.

We don't live in a world of reality,
we live in a world of perceptions.

I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream.

Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.

That's precisely the question everyone should be asking ― why the hell not?

Please, my friends, be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.

What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

It's surprising how hard we'll work when the work is done just for ourselves.

It is futile to fight against, if one does not know what one is fighting for.

Every action in our lives touches on some chord that will vibrate in eternity.

In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life — It goes on.

Knowledge is a process of piling up facts; wisdom lies in their simplification.

No man on his deathbed ever said, 'I wish I had spent more time at the office.'

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.

A common man marvels at uncommon things; a wise man marvels at the commonplace.

We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.

The worst thing about new books is that they keep us from reading the old ones.

I know you are here to kill me. Shoot, coward, you are only going to kill a man.

It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, that is poor.

You've got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down.

Weekends don't count unless you spend them doing something completely pointless.

Self-reverence, self-knowledge, self-control ― these three alone lead to power.

All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.

We can try to avoid making choices by doing nothing, but even that is a decision.

It is no measure of good health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society.

Of all the words of mice and men,
The saddest are
'It might have been'

All the knowledge I possess everyone else can acquire, but my heart is all my own.

The most pathetic person in the world is someone who has sight, but has no vision.

How many of you are optimistic...? Well, we'll do our best to crush that optimism.

I am burning. If anyone lacks tinder, let him set his rubbish ablaze with my fire.

Always read something that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it.

As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters.

I do not live for what the world thinks of me, but for what the I think of myself.

Talent and intelligence never yet inoculated anyone against the caprice of failure.

Hanging onto resentment is letting someone you despise live rent-free in your head.

If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you'll most certainly be right.

A lot of mothers will do anything for their children, except let them be themselves.

The more you know who you are, and what you want, the less you let things upset you.

Memories are what warm you up from the inside. But they're also what tear you apart.

If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change.

The price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men.

Finance is the art of passing currency from hand to hand until it finally disappears.

The training of the mind is an art. If this can be considered art, one's life is art.

Whenever a man does a thoroughly stupid thing, it is always from the noblest motives.

The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.

Listen: we are here on earth to fart around. Don't let anybody tell you any different!

Maybe the simple truth would do. 'Good morning. You are the 100% perfect girl for me.'

We cannot be sure of having something to live for unless we are willing to die for it.

Life is full of misery, loneliness, and suffering ― and it's all over much too soon.

Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

I have spent most of the day putting in a comma and the rest of the day taking it out.

To be sure of winning, invent your own game, and never tell any other player the rules.

The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them.

It's partly true, too, but it isn't all true. People always think something's all true.

I swear to you... that to be overly conscious is a sickness, a real, thorough sickness.

The capacity to care is the thing that gives life its deepest meaning and significance.

You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.

Much unhappiness has come into the world because of bewilderment and things left unsaid.

There is an expiry date on blaming your parents for steering you in the wrong direction.

Love is the condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.

Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent.

Close your eyes my child
And dream
That perfect dream
Inside your head

We are all born into the world with nothing. Everything we acquire after that is profit.

Nearly all the best things that came to me in life have been unexpected, unplanned by me.

Sometimes I can hear my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I'm not living.

Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.

In a sense, management theory is what happens to philosophers when you pay them too much.

That's one of the remarkable things about life. It's never so bad that it can't get worse.

When I hear somebody sigh, 'Life is hard,' I am always tempted to ask, 'Compared to what?'

Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric.

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.

It's not enough to be busy, so are the ants.
The question is, what are we busy about?

Light matters should be dealt with seriously. Serious matters should be dealt with lightly.

All men should strive to learn before they die, what they are running from, and to, and why.

Do not worry about your difficulties in Mathematics. I can assure you mine are still greater.

I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.

What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

Today you are You, that is truer than true.
There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

True glory consists in doing what deserves to be written; in writing, what deserves to be read.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work ... I want to achieve it through not dying.

Today I made peace with the possibility that my cause of death might not be listed as 'kung fu.'

I don't know which is worse ... that everyone has his price, or that the price is always so low.

Feelings are not supposed to be logical. Dangerous is the man who has rationalized his emotions.

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.

And in the end, it's not the number of years in your life, but the number of life in your years.

To accomplish great things we must not only act, but also dream, not only plan, but also believe.

The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt.

If people sat outside and looked at the stars each night, I'll bet they'd live a lot differently.

Bottom line: we need to make physics drills as fun as watching batman punch [someone in] the junk.

You may never know what results come of your action, but if you do nothing there will be no result.

You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit.

Unclose your mind. You are not a prisoner. You are a bird in flight, searching the skies for dreams.

No single event can awaken within us a stranger totally unknown to us. To live is to be slowly born.

I sell ice in the winter, I sell fire in hell
I am a hustler, baby, I'll sell water to a well

Don't part with your illusions. When they are gone you may still exist, but you have ceased to live.

When you are content to be simply yourself and don't compare or compete, everybody will respect you.

You've achieved success in your field when you don't know whether what you are doing is work or play.

Ever tried.
Ever failed.
No matter.
Try again.
Fail again.
Fail better.

We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.

If you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed, if you do read the newspaper you are misinformed.

Thank you to all
That has ever existed
And everything else
I could have never listed

Science is like sex: sometimes something useful comes out, but that is not the reason we are doing it.

Reason's last step is the recognition that there are an infinite number of things which are beyond it.

I need no warrant for being, and no word of sanction upon my being. I am the warrant and the sanction.

Be glad of life because it gives you the chance to love, to work, to play, and to look up at the stars.

Count no day lost in which you waited your turn, took only your share and sought advantage over no one.

The philosopher has never killed any priests, whereas the priest has killed a great many philosophers.

I need solitude, which is to say, recovery, return to my self, the breath of a free, light, playful air.

The greatest activity of which man is capable: Opening up yet another fragment of the frontier of beauty.

A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.

The greatest thing about tomorrow is, I will be better than I am today. And that's how I look at my life.

Today isn't the day for saying 'we should' or 'we ought to'; it's the day to say 'I will', and then do it.

(Words for the Wind)
I feel my fate in what I cannot fear.
I learn by going where I have to go.

Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.

The misfortune of life isn't not being able to realize one's dreams and die; it's not having a dream at all.

'We apologize for any inconvenience we may have caused...' We may have caused...? You fucking caused it man.

An inventor is a man who asks 'Why?' of the universe and lets nothing stand between the answer and his mind.

You don't get to choose how you're going to die. Or when. You can only decide how you're going to live. Now.

You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.

Remember, there are no mistakes, only lessons. Love yourself, trust your choices, and everything is possible.

In questions of science, the authority of a thousand is not worth the humble reasoning of a single individual.

Whenever there is a hard job to be done I assign it to a lazy man; he is sure to find an easy way of doing it.

But what if I removed that desire for happiness? What if instead of feeding the world, I simply killed hunger?

To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.

Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it.

I am embarked on a wide ocean, boundless in its prospect and, in which, perhaps, no safe harbor is to be found.

If you must play, decide on three things at the start: the rules of the game, the stakes, and the quitting time.

I cannot escape the objection that there is no state of mind, however simple, that does not change every moment.

Oh, yeah. Yeah, I'm sorry. You want rights now. You want freedoms. Right now. Is it time? Is it freedom o'clock?

That is my principal objection to life, I think: It's too easy, when alive, to make perfectly horrible mistakes.

What is the one sentence summary of how you change the world? Always work hard on something uncomfortably exciting!

Music is a part of you. There has to be life in every note. It's always the small things that make a big difference.

To save the world requires faith and courage: faith in reason, and courage to proclaim what reason shows to be true.

A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do.

This man makes a net,
This man stands and wishes,
Would you like to bet,
Who will catch the fishes?

Youth is happy because it has the ability to see beauty. Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grogws old.

Always do what you want, and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.

Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable.

So complex is the human spirit
That it can itself scarce discern
The deep springs which impel it to action

Unlike an external enemy, the inner enemy cannot regroup and launch a comeback once it has been destroyed from within.

The boats outside the window
were always still
I wondered if one of them
would take me to the ocean.

There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.

God put me on this earth to accomplish a certain number of things. Right now I am so far behind that I will never die.

And, well I've decided to break it to you all that you all suck. Not as students. Not as students. Just as human beings.

It has been said that man is a rational animal. All my life I have been searching for evidence which could support this.

Success means having the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you believe you were meant to be.

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Traveling is like flirting with life. It's like saying, 'I would stay and love you, but I have to go; this is my station.'

Throughout your life advance daily, becoming more skillful than yesterday, more skillful than today. This is never-ending.

I am satisfied with the mystery of life's eternity and with a knowledge, a sense, of the marvelous structure of existence.

The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it.

Sweet are the uses of adversity,
Which like the toad, ugly and venomous
Wears yet a precious jewel in his head.

All of us failed to match our dreams of perfection. So I rate us on the basis of our splendid failure to do the impossible.

Love what you do. Get good at it. Competence is a rare commodity in this day and age. And let the chips fall where they may.

Man's unique agony as a species consists in his perpetual conflict between the desire to stand out and the need to blend in.

It takes awhile. It's going to take you awhile. It's normal to take awhile. And you just have to fight your way through that.

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.

The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.

You must have been warned against letting the golden hours slip by; but some of them are golden only because we let them slip by.

They say atomic radiation can hurt your reproductive organs. My answer is so can a hockey stick. But we don't stop building them.

When you think you are the king of the world, you are really stupid in my opinion because in this life every person is important.

Reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions, and can never pretend to any other office than to serve and obey them.

Our lives improve only when we take chances ― and the first and most difficult risk we can take is to be honest with ourselves.

Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.

He who thinks a great deal is not suited to be a party man: he thinks his way through the party and out the other side too soon.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.

Calvin: I've been thinking Hobbes ―
Hobbes: On a weekend?
Calvin: Well, it wasn't on purpose...

Your preparation for the real world is not in the answers you've learned, but in the questions you've learned how to ask yourself.

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.

I hold it true, whatever befall; I feel it, when I sorrow most; 'tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

If your daily life seems poor, do not blame it; blame yourself, tell yourself that you are not poet enough to call forth its riches.

The meaning of earthly existence lies not, as we have grown used to thinking, in prospering, but in the development of the soul..”

(On Pac-Man)
I thought that one of the things women like to do is eat. So I started working on a game concept based on eating.

There is no value in life except what you choose to place upon it and no happiness in any place except what you bring to it yourself.

Vizzini: Inconceivable!
Inigo Montoya: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Love is something so divine, description would make it less; 'tis what I feel, but can't define, 'tis what I know, but can't express.

Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones.

Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine and at last you create what you will.

If your success is not on your own terms, if it looks good to the world but does not feel good in your heart, it is not success at all.

Language has created the word loneliness to express the pain of being alone, and the word solitude to express the glory of being alone.

If you look at the people who have high impact, they have pretty general knowledge. They don't have a really narrowly focused education.

Productivity is most important by engineering management rules, but enjoyment is most important for engineers. One stems from the other.

Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.

If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.

Don't work. Avoid telling the truth. Be hated. Love someone. You're going to have a busy life. Thank goodness there's no life expectancy.

Life happens too fast for you ever to think about it. If you could just persuade people of this, but they insist on amassing information.

Few people think more than two or three times a year; I have made an international reputation for myself by thinking once or twice a week.

In the end
these things matter most:
How well did you love?
How fully did you live?
How deeply did you let go?

From now on, I'm not doing anything I don't want to do! The world owes me happiness, fulfillment and success.... I'm just here to cash in.

A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.

Respect your efforts, respect yourself. Self-respect leads to self-discipline. When you have both firmly under your belt, that's real power.

Mistakes are a part of being human. Appreciate your mistakes for what they are: precious life lessons that can only be learned the hard way.

Less is more. Happiness is found close to the necessities of life,
not in needless complexity and meaningless multiplicity of choice.

Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art… It has no survival value; rather is one of those things that give value to survival.

Brick walls are there for a reason. They're not there to keep us out. They are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something.

Since I grew tired of the chase and search,
I learned to find;
And since the wind blows in my face,
I sail with every wind.

Selling out is usually more a matter of buying in. Sell out, and you're really buying into someone else's system of values, rules and rewards.

The gaze should be large and broad... it is important to see distant things as if they were close and to take a distanced view of close things.

Conventional people are roused to fury by departures from convention, largely because they regard such departures as a criticism of themselves.

What you learn about programming in college is much like what you learn about books or clothes or dating: what bad taste you had in high school.

I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can't see from the center.

1 · Mindfulness
2 · Investigation
3 · Energy
4 · Joy
5 · Tranquility
6 · Concentration
7 · Equanimity

What we are today comes from our thoughts of yesterday, and our present thoughts build our life of tomorrow: Our life is the creation of our mind.

We never cease from exploration
And the end of all exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And see the place for the first time

Silicon Valley, a place that is alarmingly almost completely devoid of silicone and might just be one of the biggest known sausage fests in the world.

It's a rare gift, you know, to feel reverence for your own life and to want the best, the greatest, the highest possible, here, now, for your very own.

This, I submit, is the freedom of a real education, of learning how to be well-adjusted. You get to consciously decide what has meaning and what doesn't.

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.

If you limit your choices only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want, and all that is left is a compromise.

Nothing, to my way of thinking, is a better proof of a well ordered mind than a man's ability to stop just where he is and pass some time in his own company.

Life does not consist mainly, or even largely, of facts and happenings. It consists mainly of the storm of thought that is forever flowing through one's head.

Find that pursuit that will energize you, consume you, become an obsession. Each day, you must rise with a restless enthusiasm. If you don't, you are working.

The trouble with him was that he was without imagination. He was quick and alert in the things of life, but only in the things, and not in the significances.

(On Wikipedia)
Imagine a world in which every single person on the planet is given free access to the sum of all human knowledge. That's what we're doing.

You get ultra happiness when a beautiful woman says she loves you and then gives you an ice cream sandwich and says 'this ice cream sandwich? it loves you too.'

Good nature is, of all moral qualities, the one that the world needs most, and good nature is the result of ease and security, not of a life of arduous struggle.

What do we leave behind when we cross each frontier? Each moment seems split in two; melancholy for what was left behind and the excitement of entering a new land.

I'll find my destiny on this ebony sea, understand, let it be, this is heaven to me. If I must I'll drift indefinitely... Let me go, let me be or I'll never be free.

[I feel] engulfed in the infinite immensity of spaces whereof I know nothing, and which know nothing of me... The eternal silence of these infinite spaces alarms me.

Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.

Most of what we say and do is not essential. If you can eliminate it, you'll have more time, and more tranquillity. Ask yourself at every moment, 'Is this necessary?'

Meetings are an addictive, highly self-indulgent activity that corporations and other organizations habitually engage in only because they cannot actually masturbate.

People say that what we are seeking is a meaning for life. I don't think this is what we're really seeking. I think what we're seeking is an experience of being alive.

When there's a fire, you dial 119, when there's a thief, you dial 112, when you're lonely, you dial 369, when you're lonely and restless, please dial 010-xxx-xxxx [my number]

This is a story about us, people, being persuaded to spend money we don't have, on things we don't need, to create impressions that won't last, on people we don't care about.

The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.

We need a renaissance of wonder. We need to renew, in our hearts and in our souls, the deathless dream, the eternal poetry, the perennial sense that life is miracle and magic.

What part of this don't you understand? If two blades is good, and three blades is better, obviously five blades would make us the best fucking razor that ever existed. Comprende?

So submit some topics. Any topic is fine as long as it relates to operating systems. Though I have been sometimes known to deviate from this, like last year I talked about dragons.

1 · 義 · Rectitude
2 · 勇 · Courage
3 · 仁 · Benevolence
4 · 礼 · Respect
5 · 誠 · Honesty
6 · 誉 · Honor
7 · 忠 · Loyalty

I think it is often easier to make progress on mega-ambitious dreams. I know that sounds completely nuts. But, since no one else is crazy enough to do it, you have little competition.

Information is not knowledge
Knowledge is not wisdom
Wisdom is not truth
Truth is not beauty
Beauty is not love
Love is not music
Music is the best.

I have learned, that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.

Go to work, send your kids to school
follow fashion, act normal
walk on the pavements, watch T.V.
save for your old age, obey the law
Repeat after me: I am free

And it's nobody fault I've made the decisions I've made.
This is the life I chose or rather the life that chose me.
If you can't respect that your whole perspective is wack.

If someone says:
'That's impossible.'
You should understand it as:
'According to my very limited experience and narrow understanding of reality, that's very unlikely.'

Everyone by now presumably knows about the danger of premature optimization. I think we should be just as worried about premature design ― designing too early what a program should do.

I wanted to be a hero. I wanted to be the center of attention. I wanted the glory. I wanted the fame. I wanted the pretty girls to come in and say 'hi, I see that you're good at Centipede.'

Graffiti is one of the few tools you have if you have almost nothing. And even if you don't come up with a picture to cure world poverty you can make someone smile while they're having a piss.

If you end up with a boring miserable life because you listened to your mom, your dad, your teacher, your priest, or some guy on television telling you how to do your shit, then you deserve it.

To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting.

We are not trying to solve the world's problems... However, even in the midst of hatred and killing, there are things worth living for. A wonderful encounter, or a thing of beauty can still exist.

The most important thing in an argument, next to being right, is to leave an escape-hatch for your opponent, so that he can gracefully swing over to your side without too much apparent loss of face.

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.

If you want to build a ship
don't herd people together to collect wood
and don't assign them tasks and work,
but rather teach them to long for the
endless immensity of the sea.

Some failure in life is inevitable. It is impossible to live without failure at something unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case, you fail by default.

The very existence of flamethrowers proves that sometime, somewhere, someone said to himself, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done.'

Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes.
Don't resist them – that only creates sorrow.
Let reality be reality.
Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.

You've got to find what you love... As in all matters of the heart you'll know when you find it and like any great relationship is gets better and better as the years roll on, so keep looking, don't settle.

Living is like tearing through a museum. Not until later do you really start absorbing what you saw, thinking about it, looking it up in a book, and remembering ― because you can't take it all in at once.

Why am I trying to become what I don't want to be? What am I doing in an office, making a contemptuous, begging fool of myself, when all I want is out there, waiting for me the minute I say I know who I am.

I laugh at those who think they can damage me.
They do not know who I am,
they do not know what I think,
they cannot even touch the things which are really mine
and with which I live.

It's hard to think about growing up when you're right in the middle of doing it. It's hard to know what you want. Sometimes there are so many voices in your head it's difficult to know which of them is yours.

REVISED YOUR TO DO LIST

Be a famous musician.
Be a famous act or.
Be a famous write r.
Be a famous basketball player.
Be famous.

SON

How can I ever repay you
for what you've given me?
A daily opportunity
to change the world
for the better
simply by spending time
with the person I love the most.

I know it seem hard sometimes but remember one thing,
Through every dark night, there's a bright day after that,
So no matter how hard it get, stick your chest out,
Keep your head up... and handle it.

The preamble of thought, the transition through which it passes from the unconscious to the conscious, is action. Only so much do I know, as I have lived. Instantly we know whose words are loaded with life, and whose not.

If you have fear of some pain or suffering, you should examine whether there is anything you can do about it. If you can, there is no need to worry about it; if you cannot do anything, then there is also no need to worry.

Douchebag: You mean 'Project 3' instead of 'Project 2' in the subject line.
Shewchuk: Actually, I meant 'Let's all get high and trash a hotel room.' So I think the final result shows admirable restraint.

I think these difficult times have helped me to understand better than before how infinitely rich and beautiful life is in every way and that so many things that one goes around worrying about are of no importance whatsoever.

Life is full of choices, if you have the guts to go for it. That's why I get immediately bored with anyone's complaining about how boring their life is, or how bad their town is. Fucking leave and go somewhere else. Or don't.

Follow the voice of your heart, even if it leads you off the path of timid souls. Do not become hard and embittered, even if life tortures you at times. There is only one thing that counts: to live one's life well and happily.

There is no such thing as duty. If you know that a thing is right, you want to do it. If you don't want to do it ― it isn't right. If it's right and you don't want to do it ― you don't know what right is and you're not a man.

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.
You're on your own.
And you know what you know.
You are the one who'll decide where to go.

(On Rafael Nadal)
I tell him you must be always grateful of the life. I think one of the most important things I say always to Rafael is to have a good face. Because in this life, the ball going out is not a very big problem.

Those whose lives are fruitful to themselves, to their friends, or to the world are inspired by hope and sustained by joy: they see in imagination the things that might be and the way in which they are to be brought into existence.

The really useful education is that which follows the direction of the child's own instinctive interests, supplying knowledge for which it is seeking, not dry, detailed information wholly out of relation to its spontaneous desires.

War must be, while we defend our lives against a destroyer who would devour all; but I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend.

You can spend minutes, hours, days, weeks, or even months over-analyzing a situation; trying to put the pieces together, justifying what could've, would've happened... or you can just leave the pieces on the floor and move the fuck on.

Learning how to think really means learning how to exercise some control over how and what you think. It means being conscious and aware enough to choose what you pay attention to and to choose how you construct meaning from experience.

Personal happiness lies in knowing that life is not a checklist of acquisition of achievement... life is difficult, and complicated, and beyond anyone's control, and the humility to know that will enable you to survive it's vicissitudes.

The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference.
The opposite of art is not ugliness, it's indifference.
The opposite of faith is not heresy, it's indifference.
And the opposite of life is not death, it's indifference.

People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don't believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can't find them, make them.

We do not receive wisdom, we must discover it for ourselves, after a journey through the wilderness which one one else can make for us, which no one can spare us, for our wisdom is the point of view from which we come at last to regard the world.

When we have faced down impossible odds; when we've been told that we're not ready, or that we shouldn't try, or that we can't, generations of Americans have responded with a simple creed that sums up the spirit of a people:

Yes we can.

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 best designers and the best programmers aren't the ones with the best skills, or the nimblest fingers, or the ones who can rock and roll with Photoshop or their environment of choice, they are the ones that can determine what just doesn't matter.

Night, the beloved. Night, when words fade and things come alive. When the destructive analysis of day is done, and all that is truly important becomes whole and sound again. When man reassembles his fragmentary self and grows with the calm of a tree.

All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible.

If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.

I refuse to accept despair as the final response to the ambiguities of history. I refuse to accept the idea that the 'isness' of man's present condition makes him morally incapable of reaching up for the eternal 'oughtness' that forever confronts him.

Why do they always teach us that it's easy and evil to do what we want and that we need discipline to restrain ourselves? It's the hardest thing in the world ― to do what we want. And it takes the greatest kind of courage. I mean, what we really want.

All courses of action are risky, so prudence is not in avoiding danger (it's impossible), but calculating risk and acting decisively. Make mistakes of ambition and not mistakes of sloth. Develop the strength to do bold things, not the strength to suffer.

A complex system that works is invariably found to have evolved from a simple system that worked. A complex system designed from scratch never works and cannot be patched up to make it work. You have to start over, beginning with a working simple system.

I have been astonished that men could die martyrs for their religion ―
I have shudder'd at it.
I shudder no more.
I could be martyr'd for my religion
Love is my religion
And I could die for that.
I could die for you.

Your life is the sum result of all the choices you make, both consciously and unconsciously. If you can control the process of choosing, you can take control of all aspects of your life. You can find the freedom that comes from being in charge of yourself.

The point here is ... to be just a little less arrogant. To have just a little critical awareness about myself and my certainties. Because a huge percentage of the stuff that I tend to be automatically certain of is, it turns out, totally wrong and deluded.

So what I saw around me were great kids who had been trained to be world-class hoop jumpers. Any goal you set them, they could achieve. Any test you gave them, they could pass with flying colors. They were, as one of them put it herself, “excellent sheep.”

People travel to wonder at the height of mountains,
at the huge waves of the sea,
at the long courses of rivers,
at the vast compass of the ocean,
at the circular motion of the stars;
and they pass by themselves without wondering.

At 15 I set my heart on learning;
At 30 I firmly took my stand;
At 40 I had no delusions;
At 50 I knew the Mandate of Heaven;
At 60 my ear was attuned;
At 70 I followed my heart's desire without overstepping the boundaries of right.

I believe that the very purpose of our life is to seek happiness... Whether one believes in religion or not, whether one believes in this religion or that religion, we all are seeking something better in life..., the very motion of our life is towards happiness.

People often say that 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder,' and I say that the most liberating thing about beauty is realizing that you are the beholder. This empowers us to find beauty in places where others have not dared to look, including inside ourselves.

(The greatest midterm pep talk ever)
Aristotle once said that man reaches the peak of pleasure from... sexual intercourse... and thinking.
You are about to experience the second peak.
I hope you all studied hard, so you don't experience the first.

There is something in every one of you that waits and listens for the sound of the genuine in yourself. It is the only true guide you will ever have. And if you cannot hear it, you will all of your life spend your days on the ends of strings that somebody else pulls.

Finish every day and be done with it. You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.

What information consumes is rather obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients. Hence, a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention and a need to allocate that attention efficiently among the overabundance of information sources that might consume it.

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?

So why do I talk about the benefits of failure? Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me.

静夜思 · Thoughts on a Still Night

床前明月光 · Beside my bed a pool of light
疑是地上霜 · Is it hoarfrost on the ground?
舉頭望明月 · I lift my eyes and see the moon,
低頭思故鄉 · I bend my head and think of home.

Thirty spokes unite at the single hub;
It is the empty space which makes the wheel useful.
Mold clay to form a bowl;
It is the empty space which makes the bowl useful.
Cut out windows and doors;
It is the empty space which makes the room useful.

And now the end is near
And so I face the final curtain,
My friends, I'll say it clear,
I'll state my case of which I'm certain.
I've lived a life that's full, I've travelled each and evr'y highway
And more, much more than this, I did it my way.

Hope is a state of mind, not of the world. Hope, in this deep and powerful sense, is not the same as joy that things are going well, or willingness to invest in enterprises that are obviously heading for success, but rather an ability to work for something because it is good.

The most beautiful emotion we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion that stands at the cradle of all true art and science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead, a snuffed-out candle.

We do not believe in ourselves until someone reveals that deep inside us something is valuable, worth listening to, worthy of our trust, sacred to our touch. Once we believe in ourselves we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight or any experience that reveals the human spirit.

I wanted a perfect ending. Now I've learned, the hard way, that some poems don't rhyme, and some stories don't have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what's going to happen next.

Every day, the sun; and, after sunset, night and her stars. Ever the winds blow; ever the grass grows. Every day, men and women, conversing, beholding and beholden. The scholar is he of all men whom this spectacle most engages. He must settle its value in his mind. What is nature to him?

The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars.

There is surely nothing other than the single purpose of the present moment. A man's whole life is a succession of moment after moment. If one fully understands the present moment, there will be nothing else to do, and nothing else to pursue. Live being true to the single purpose of the moment.

There's a common misconception that work is necessary. You will meet people working at miserable jobs. They tell you they are “making a living”. No, they're not. They're dying, frittering away their fast-extinguishing lives doing things which are, at best, meaningless and, at worst, harmful.

The difference between patriotism and nationalism is that the patriot is proud of his country for what it does, and the nationalist is proud of his country no matter what it does; the first attitude creates a feeling of responsibility, but the second a feeling of blind arrogance that leads to war.

Wait wait — put your hands down. Listen: I know you have a thousand ideas for all the cool features iTunes could have. So do we. But we don't want a thousand features. That would be ugly. Innovation is not about saying yes to everything. It's about saying NO to all but the most crucial features.

THE FIRST STEP

Cheers to the albums written
fortunes earned
lives touched in the millions
and generations defined
by one lonely person
placing an ad
in the back of a free paper
seeking a guitarist, bassist, and drummer
just looking to jam.

I love you also means I love you more than anyone loves you, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that no one loves you, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that I love no one else, and never have loved anyone else, and never will love anyone else.

Lucky people generate good fortune via four basic principles. They are skilled at creating and noticing chance opportunities, make lucky decisions by listening to their intuition, create self-fulfilling prophesies via positive expectations, and adopt a resilient attitude that transforms bad luck into good.

Funding is kind of like crack. A lot of people keep going back for more. You know, in the drug world it's called addiction, but in the venture capital world it's called round A, round B, round C... And they always want you to spend, and spend it all, so you need more and more and more and keep coming back.

It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so to make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look, which morally we can do. To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts.

(On American Wines)
They're too simple. Wines are like human beings. The first time you meet, instead of being all smiles and wanting to become friends right away, there has to be some formality, some conversation, before gradually becoming close. When you open an American bottle, it's all big smiles.

Well here it is: my one, life-changing piece of advice.  The advice that will help you get that job, close that deal, get that upgrade, open the doors, calm them down, help them forget, help them remember, command their respect, gain their friendship, stop them crying, make them fall in love:
 
Smile.

For all our conceits about being the center of the universe, we live in a routine planet of a humdrum star stuck away in an obscure corner ... on an unexceptional galaxy which is one of about 100 billion galaxies... That is the fundamental fact of the universe we inhabit, and it is very good for us to understand that.

In the daily lives of most men and women, fear plays a greater part than hope: they are more filled with the thought of the possessions that others may take from them, than of the joy that they might create in their own lives and in the lives with which they come in contact.

It is not so that life should be lived.

Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark in the hopeless swaps of the not-quite, the not-yet, and the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish in lonely frustration for the life you deserved and have never been able to reach. The world you desire can be won. It exists.. it is real.. it is possible.. it's yours.

People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don't even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a child ― our own two eyes. All is a miracle.

The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These people have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.

Somehow I can't believe that there are any heights that can't be scaled by a man who knows the secrets of making dreams come true. This special secret, it seems to me, can be summarized in four C's. They are curiosity, confidence, courage, and constancy, and the greatest of all is confidence. When you believe in a thing, believe in it all the way.

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.

I know it's just lyrics and beats
But lyrics to me are like infinite peace
And peace
Is what hip hop had brought me
Strumming my pain like it was 'Killing Me Softly'
Killing me, but what a way to die
Overdosed on flows, comatose on rhymes
And I
Wanna drift away
Staying conscious enough just to hit replay

Planning is just guessing. So if you're going to write a business plan, write a business guess. And a financial plan is a financial guess. And strategic planning is strategic guessing. And then we can take it a little less seriously... You're better off making things up as you go [because] the best information you ever have about something is when you're doing it.

[It's] troubling because it reminds us how difficult it is to prove anything. We like to pretend that our experiments define the truth for us. But that's often not the case. Just because an idea is true doesn't mean it can be proved. And just because an idea can be proved doesn't mean it's true. When the experiments are done, we still have to choose what to believe.

1492. As children we were taught to memorize this year with pride and joy as the year people began living full and imaginative lives on the continent of North America. Actually, people had been living full and imaginative lives on the continent of North America for hundreds of years before that. 1492 was simply the year sea pirates began to rob, cheat, and kill them.

There wasn't a cloud in the sky, no wind, and everything was quiet around us ― all we could hear were birds chirping in the woods. The war seemed like something in a faraway land that had nothing to do with us. We sang songs as we hiked up the hill, sometimes imitating the birds we heard. Except for the fact that the war was still going on, it was a perfect morning.

You know, sometimes it seems things go by too quickly. We're so busy watching out for what's just ahead of us that we don't take the time to enjoy where we are. Days go by and we hardly notice them. Life becomes a blur. Often it takes some calamity to make us live in the present. Then suddenly we wake up and see all the mistakes we've made, but it's too late to change anything.

山中問答 · Conversation in the Mountains

問余何意棲碧山 · You ask why I nestle in the green mountains.
笑而不答心自閑 · I laugh but answer not ― my heart is serene.
桃花流水杳然去 · Peach blossoms and flowing waters go without a trace.
別有天地非人間 · There is another Heaven and Earth beyond the world of man.

From the chair I watch how she carries herself, every motion natural and elegant. I can't express it well, but there's definitely something special about it, as if her retreating figure is trying to tell me something she couldn't express while facing me. But what this is, I haven't a clue. Face it, I remind myself ― there's tons of things you don't have a clue about.

(On My Neighbor Totoro)
Here is a children's film made for the world we should live in, rather than the one we occupy. A film with no villains. No fight scenes. No evil adults. No fighting between the two kids. No scary monsters. No darkness before the dawn. A world that is benign. A world where if you meet a strange towering creature in the forest, you curl up on its tummy and have a nap.

For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin ― real life. But here was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, or a debt to be paid. Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that this was my life. This perspective has helped me to see that there is no way to happiness. Happiness is the way.

Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life.

Don't be trapped by dogma ― which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget.

Our capacity to think, except in the service of what we are dangerously deluded in supposing is our self-interest and in conformity with common sense, is pitifully limited: our capacity even to see, hear, touch, taste and smell is so shrouded in veils of mystification that an intensive discipline of unlearning is necessary for anyone before one can begin to experience the world afresh, with innocence, truth and love.

The vanity of existence is revealed in the whole form existence assumes: in the infiniteness of time and space contrasted with the finiteness of the individual in both; in the fleeting present as the sole form in which actuality exists; in the contingency and relativity of all things; in continual becoming without being; in continual desire without satisfaction; in the continual frustration of striving of which life consists.

Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.

A man who lies to himself, and believes his own lies, becomes unable to recognize truth, either in himself or in anyone else, and he ends up losing respect for himself and for others. When he has no respect for anyone, he can no longer love, and in him, he yields to his impulses, indulges in the lowest form of pleasure, and behaves in the end like an animal in satisfying his vices. And it all comes from lying to others and to yourself.

To laugh often and 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 that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.

Without ambition one starts nothing. Without work one finishes nothing. The prize will not be sent to you. You have to win it. The man who knows how will always have a job. The man who also knows why will always be his boss. As to methods there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The man who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man who tries methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble.

You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something ― your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. Because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well worn path, and that will make all the difference.

Of course, there is a portion of reading quite indispensable to a wise man. History and exact science he must learn by laborious reading. Colleges, in like manner, have their indispensable office, — to teach elements. But they can only highly serve us, when they aim not to drill, but to create; when they gather from far every ray of various genius to their hospitable halls, and, by the concentrated fires, set the hearts of their youth on flame.

Beneath the effort directed toward the accumulation of worldly goods lies all too frequently the illusion that this is the most substantial and desirable end to be achieved; but there is, fortunately, a minority composed of those who recognize early in their lives that the most beautiful and satisfying experiences open to humankind are not derived from the outside, but are bound up with the development of the individual's own feeling, thinking and acting.

We stand on a mountain pass in the midst of whirling snow and blinding mist through which we get glimpses now and 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 and of good courage.' Act for the best, hope for the best, and take what comes... If death ends all, we cannot meet death better.

I have lived in the pursuit of a vision, both personal and social. Personal: to care for what is noble, for what is beautiful, for what is gentle; to allow moments of insight to give wisdom at more mundane times. Social: to see in imagination the society that is to be created, where individuals grow freely, and where hate and greed and envy die because there is nothing to nourish them. These things I believe, and the world, for all its horrors, has left me unshaken.

Loving someone has great benefits. There is admiration, learning, attraction and something which, for the want of a better word, we call happiness. In loving someone, we become inspired to better ourselves in every way. We learn the true worthlessness of material things. We celebrate being human. Loving is good for the soul... You will also find that it is no great tragedy if your love is not reciprocated. You are not doing it to be loved back. Its value is to inspire you.

Life moves on, whether we act as cowards or heroes. Life has no other discipline to impose, if we would but realize it, than to accept life unquestioningly. Everything we shut our eyes to, everything we run away from, everything we deny, denigrate or despise, serves to defeat us in the end. What seems nasty, painful, evil, can become a source of beauty, joy and strength, if faced with an open mind. Every moment is a golden one for him who has the vision to recognize it as such.

The scholar is that man who must take up into himself all the ability of the time, all the contributions of the past, all the hopes of the future. He must be an university of knowledges. If there be one lesson more than another, which should pierce his ear, it is, The world is nothing, the man is all; in yourself is the law of all nature, and you know not yet how a globule of sap ascends; in yourself slumbers the whole of Reason; it is for you to know all, it is for you to dare all.

I'm not afraid to compete. It's just the opposite. Don't you see that? I'm afraid I will compete ― that's what scares me. That's why I quit the Theater Department. Just because I'm so horribly conditioned to accept everybody else's values, and just because I like applause and people to rave about me, doesn't make it right. I'm ashamed of it. I'm sick of it. I'm sick of not having the courage to be an absolute nobody. I'm sick of myself and everybody else that wants to make some kind of a splash.

Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything ― all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure ― these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

That's the whole trouble. You can't ever find a place that's nice and peaceful, because there isn't any. You may think there is, but once you get there, when you're not looking, somebody'll sneak up and write 'Fuck you' right under your nose. Try it sometime. I think, even, if I ever die, and they stick me in a cemetery, and I have a tombstone and all, it'll say 'Holden Caulfield' on it, and then what year I was born and what year I died, and then right under that it'll say 'Fuck you.' I'm positive, in fact.

The best thing, though, in that museum was that everything always stayed right where it was. Nobody'd move. You could go there a hundred times, and that Eskimo would still be just finished catching those two fish, the birds would still be on their way south, the deers would still be drinking out of that water hole, with their pretty antlers and their pretty, skinny legs, and that squaw with the naked bosom would still be weaving that same blanket. Nobody'd be different. The only thing that would be different would be you.

You will find your own ethical dilemmas in all parts of your lives, both personal and professional. We all have different desires and needs, but if we don't discover what we want from ourselves and what we stand for, we will live passively and unfulfilled. Sooner or later, we are all asked to compromise ourselves and the things we care about. We define ourselves by our actions. With each decision, we tell ourselves and the world who we are. Think about what you want out of this life, and recognize that there are many kinds of success.

Borat: If this car drive into a group of gypsies, will there be any damage to the car?
Car Dealership Owner: It depends on how hard you hit them and all that.
Borat: Hard.
Car Dealership Owner: You might ― if somebody rolls on the windshield, they could crack your windshield.
Borat: How fast do I need to go to guarantee I kill them?
Car Dealership Owner: Uh ― let me tell you something with this vehicle here probably doing 35-45 miles per hour will do it.

Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.

For what it's worth, it's never too late, or in my case too early, to be whoever you want to be. There's no time limit... start whenever you want... you can change or stay the same. There are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. I hope you see things that stop you. I hope you feel things that you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life that you're proud of and if you find that you're not, I hope you have the strength to start all over again.

Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.

送友人 · Farewell to a Friend

青山橫北郭 · Blue mountains to the north of the walls,
白水遶東城 · White river winding about them;
此地一為別 · Here we must make separation
孤蓬萬里征 · And go out through a thousand miles of dead grass.
浮雲游子意 · Mind like a floating wide cloud,
落日故人情 · Sunset like the parting of old acquaintances
揮手自茲去 · Who bow over their clasped hands at a distance.
蕭蕭班馬鳴 · Our horses neigh to each others as we are departing.

Anyway, I keep picturing all these little kids playing some game in this big field of rye and all. Thousands of little kids, and nobody's around ― nobody big, I mean ― except me. And I'm standing on the edge of some crazy cliff. What I have to do, I have to catch everybody if they start to go over the cliff ― I mean if they're running and they don't look where they're going I have to come out from somewhere and catch them. That's all I'd do all day. I'd just be the catcher in the rye and all. I know it's crazy, but that's the only thing I'd really like to be. I know it's crazy.

實而備之 · If your enemy is secure at all points, be prepared for him.
強而避之 · If he is in superior strength, evade him.
怒而撓之 · If your opponent is temperamental, seek to irritate him.
卑而驕之 · Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant.
佚而勞之 · If he is taking his ease, give him no rest.
親而離之 · If his forces are united, separate them.
出其不意 · If sovereign and subject are in accord, put division between them.
攻其不備 · Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected.

後游 · Traveling Again

寺憶曾游處 · I remember the temple, this route I've travelled before,
橋伶再渡時 · I recall the bridge as I cross it again.
江山如有待 · It seems the hills and rivers have been waiting,
花柳更無私 · The flowers and willows all are selfless now.
野潤煙光薄 · The field is sleek and vivid, thin mist shines,
沙暄日色遲 · On soft sand, the sunlight's colour shows it's late.
客愁全為減 · All the traveller's sorrow fades away,
舍此復何之 · What better place to rest than this?

The world that we must seek is a world in which the creative spirit is alive, in which life is an adventure full of joy and hope, based rather upon the impulse to construct than upon the desire to retain what we possess or to seize what is possessed by others. It must be a world in which affection has free play, in which love is purged of the instinct for domination, in which cruelty and envy have been dispelled by happiness and the unfettered development of all the instincts that build up life and fill it with mental delights. Such a world is possible; it waits only for men to wish to create it.

Here's to the crazy ones,
the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers,
The round pegs in the square holes,
the ones who see things differently.
They're not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo.
You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them.
About the only thing you can't do is ignore them.
Because they change things.
They push the human race forward.
And while some may see them as the crazy ones, I see genius.
Because the ones who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.

People grow old only by deserting their ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up interest wrinkles the soul. You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fear; as young as your hope, as old as your despair. In the central place of every heart there is a recording chamber. So long as it receives messages of beauty, hope, cheer and courage, so long are you young. When your heart is covered with the snows of pessimism and the ice of cynicism, then, and then only, are you grown old. And then, indeed as the ballad says, you just fade away.

The core thing would be just do something awesome. Try not to get caught up in the echo chamber. That is probably the toughest thing when you are trying to break out and do something original.

A lot of things are evolutionary, and it is easy to get caught up on what the geek subculture thinks. There's lots of valuable businesses that can be built there, but I think that is where a lot of people tend to spin their wheels, and I've been caught up there before. When I've had more successful things, I've thought, 'Back to basics. What do I want? What do I want to see in the world?' And create that.

I have come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element. It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather. I possess tremendous power to make life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration, I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or de-escalated, and a person is humanized or de-humanized. If we treat people as they are, we make them worse. If we treat people as they ought to be, we help them become what they are capable of becoming.

It's hard to find the words for something so basic
the simplest things can be most courageous
debated yes but it's less complex
Home is every moment I feel god blessed
Home is where I come back, all night we laughing vibing so clap
Home I find it in friends I find it things I like from within
Home is a song on a subway the holla of the blues to be free one day
Home is every true note, every real lyric and any new hope and
Home is something to fight for the soul of a man a.k.a his life force
Home when you close your eyes and feel in your heart how your soul's alive

I refuse to accept this. I believe that man will not merely endure: he will prevail. He is immortal, not because he alone among creatures has an inexhaustible voice, but because he has a soul, a spirit capable of compassion and sacrifice and endurance. The poet's, the writer's, duty is to write about these things. It is his privilege to help man endure by lifting his heart, by reminding him of the courage and honor and hope and pride and compassion and pity and sacrifice which have been the glory of his past. The poet's voice need not merely be the record of man, it can be one of the props, the pillars to help him endure and prevail.

When elite universities boast that they teach their students how to think, they mean that they teach them the analytic and rhetorical skills necessary for success in law or medicine or science or business. But a humanistic education is supposed to mean something more than that, as universities still dimly feel. So when students get to college, they hear a couple of speeches telling them to ask the big questions, and when they graduate, they hear a couple more speeches telling them to ask the big questions. And in between, they spend four years taking courses that train them to ask the little questions―specialized courses, taught by specialized professors, aimed at specialized students.

People are unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
If you do good, people may accuse you of selfish motives.
Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you may win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.
The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
Honesty and transparency make you vulnerable.
Be honest and transparent anyway.
What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.
People who really want help may attack you if you help them.
Help them anyway.
Give the world the best you have and you may get hurt.
Give the world your best anyway.

Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every 'superstar,' every 'supreme leader,' every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there ― on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

How will you use your gifts? What choices will you make?
Will inertia be your guide, or will you follow your passions?
Will you follow dogma, or will you be original?
Will you choose a life of ease, or a life of service and adventure?
Will you wilt under criticism, or will you follow your convictions?
Will you bluff it out when you're wrong, or will you apologize?
Will you guard your heart against rejection, or will you act when you fall in love?
Will you play it safe, or will you be a little bit swashbuckling?
When it's tough, will you give up, or will you be relentless?
Will you be a cynic, or will you be a builder?
Will you be clever at the expense of others, or will you be kind?

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

He is to find consolation in exercising the highest functions of human nature. He is one, who raises himself from private considerations, and breathes and lives on public and illustrious thoughts. He is the world's eye. He is the world's heart. He is to resist the vulgar prosperity that retrogrades ever to barbarism, by preserving and communicating heroic sentiments, noble biographies, melodious verse, and the conclusions of history. Whatsoever oracles the human heart, in all emergencies, in all solemn hours, has uttered as its commentary on the world of actions, — these he shall receive and impart. And whatsoever new verdict Reason from her inviolable seat pronounces on the passing men and events of to-day, — this he shall hear and promulgate.

I can live with doubt, and uncertainty, and not knowing. I think it's much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers which might be wrong. I have approximate answers, and possible beliefs, and different degrees of certainty about different things, but I'm not absolutely sure of anything, and in many things I don't know anything about, such as whether it means anything to ask why we're here, and what the question might mean. I might think about a little, but if I can't figure it out, then I go to something else. But I don't have to know an answer. I don't feel frightened by not knowing things, by being lost in a mysterious universe without having any purpose, which is the way it really is, as far as I can tell, possibly. It doesn't frighten me.

My knowledge is limited, my mind puny. I tried hard, I studied, I read many books. And nothing. In my home books spill from the shelves, they lie in piles on furniture, on the floor, barring the passage from room to room. I cannot, of course, read them all, yet my wolfish eyes constantly crave new titles. In truth, my feeling of limitation is not permanent. Only from time to time an awareness flares of how narrow our imagination is, as if the bones of our skull were too thick and did not allow the mind to get hold of what should be its domain. I should know everything that's happening at this moment, at every point on the earth. I should be able to penetrate the thoughts of my contemporaries and of people who lived a few generations ago, and two thousand and eight thousand years ago. I should, so what?

關山月 · Moon over Mountain Pass

明月出天山 · A bright moon rising above Tian Shan Mountain,
蒼茫雲海間 · Lost in a vast ocean of clouds.
長風幾萬里 · The long wind, across thousands upon thousands of miles,
吹度玉門關 · Blows past the Jade-gate Pass.
漢下白登道 · The army of Han has gone down the Baiteng Road,
胡窺青海灣 · As the barbarian hordes probe at Qinghai Bay.
由來征戰地 · It is known that from the battlefield
不見有人還 · Few ever live to return.
戍客望邊色 · Men at Garrison look on the border scene,
思歸多苦顏 · Home thoughts deepen sorrow on their faces.
高樓當此夜 · In the towered chambers tonight,
歎息未應閑 · Ceaseless are the women's sighs.

The Square Root of 3

I fear that I will always be,
A lonely number like root three,
A three is all that's good and right,
Why must my three keep out of sight,
Beneath a vicious square root sign,
I wish instead I were a nine,
For nine could thwart this evil trick,
with just some quick arithmetic,
I know I'll never see the sun,
As 1.7321,
Such is my reality,
A sad irrationality,
When hark! What is this I see,
Another square root of a three,
Has quietly come waltzing by,
Together now we multiply,
To form a number we prefer,
Rejoicing as an integer,
We break free from our mortal bonds,
And with a wave of magic wands,
Our square root signs become unglued,
And love for me has been renewed.

Choose Life. Choose a job. Choose a career. Choose a family. Choose a fucking big television, choose washing machines, cars, compact disc players and electrical tin openers. Choose good health, low cholesterol, and dental insurance. Choose fixed interest mortgage repayments. Choose a starter home. Choose your friends. Choose leisurewear and matching luggage. Choose a three-piece suite on hire purchase in a range of fucking fabrics. Choose DIY and wondering who the fuck you are on Sunday morning. Choose sitting on that couch watching mind-numbing, spirit-crushing game shows, stuffing fucking junk food into your mouth. Choose rotting away at the end of it all, pissing your last in a miserable home, nothing more than an embarrassment to the selfish, fucked up brats you spawned to replace yourselves. Choose your future. Choose life.

This is your life. Do what you love, and do it often. If you don't like something, change it. If you don't like your job, quit. If you don't have enough time, stop watching TV. If you are looking for the love of your life, stop; they will be waiting for you when you start doing things you love. Stop over-analyzing; life is simple. All emotions are beautiful. When you eat, appreciate every last bite. Travel often; getting lost will help you find yourself. Some opportunities only come once: seize them. Open your mind, arms, and heart to new things and people. We are united in our differences. Ask the next person you see what their passion is, and share your inspiring dream with them. Life is about the people you meet, and the things you create with them, so go out and start creating. Life is short. Live your dream, and wear your passion.

Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity to envision that which is not, and therefore the foundation of all innovation and invention, in it's arguably most transformative sense and revelatory capacity, it is the power that enables us to empathize with human's whose experience we have never shared. If you choose to use your status and influence to raise your voice on behalf of those who have no voice; if you choose to identify not only with the powerful, but with the powerless; if you retain the ability to imagine yourself into the lives of those who do not have your advantages, then it will not only be your proud families who celebrate your existence, but thousands and millions of people whose reality you have helped transform for the better. We do not need magic to change the world, we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already: we have the power to imagine better.

“Your own reality—for yourself, not for others.” Thinking for yourself means finding yourself, finding your own reality. Here's the other problem with Facebook and Twitter and even The New York Times. When you expose yourself to those things, especially in the constant way that people do now—older people as well as younger people—you are continuously bombarding yourself with a stream of other people's thoughts. You are marinating yourself in the conventional wisdom. In other people's reality: for others, not for yourself. You are creating a cacophony in which it is impossible to hear your own voice, whether it's yourself you're thinking about or anything else. That's what Emerson meant when he said that “he who should inspire and lead his race must be defended from travelling with the souls of other men, from living, breathing, reading, and writing in the daily, time-worn yoke of their opinions.”

He then learns, that in going down into the secrets of his own mind, he has descended into the secrets of all minds. He learns that he who has mastered any law in his private thoughts, is master to that extent of all men whose language he speaks, and of all into whose language his own can be translated. The poet, in utter solitude remembering his spontaneous thoughts and recording them, is found to have recorded that, which men in crowded cities find true for them also. The orator distrusts at first the fitness of his frank confessions, — his want of knowledge of the persons he addresses, — until he finds that he is the complement of his hearers; — that they drink his words because he fulfils for them their own nature; the deeper he dives into his privatest, secretest presentiment, to his wonder he finds, this is the most acceptable, most public, and universally true. The people delight in it; the better part of every man feels, This is my music; this is myself.

Creating a life that reflects your values and satisfies your soul is a rare achievement. In a culture that relentlessly promotes avarice and excess as the good life, a person happy doing his own work is usually considered an eccentric, if not a subversive. Ambition is only understood if it's to rise to the top of some imaginary ladder of success. Someone who takes an undemanding job because it affords him the time to pursue other interests and activities is considered a flake. A person who abandons a career in order to stay home and raise children is considered not to be living up to his potential ― as if a job title and salary are the sole measure of human worth. You'll be told in a hundred ways, some subtle and some not, to keep climbing, and never be satisfied with where you are, who you are, and what you're doing. There are a million ways to sell yourself out, and I guarantee you'll hear about them.

To invent your own life's meaning is not easy, but it's still allowed, and I think you'll be happier for the trouble.

So solitude can mean introspection, it can mean the concentration of focused work, and it can mean sustained reading. All of these help you to know yourself better. But there's one more thing I'm going to include as a form of solitude, and it will seem counterintuitive: friendship. Of course friendship is the opposite of solitude; it means being with other people. But I'm talking about one kind of friendship in particular, the deep friendship of intimate conversation. Long, uninterrupted talk with one other person. Not Skyping with three people and texting with two others at the same time while you hang out in a friend's room listening to music and studying. That's what Emerson meant when he said that “the soul environs itself with friends, that it may enter into a grander self-acquaintance or solitude.” Introspection means talking to yourself, and one of the best ways of talking to yourself is by talking to another person. One other person you can trust, one other person to whom you can unfold your soul. One other person you feel safe enough with to allow you to acknowledge things—to acknowledge things to yourself—that you otherwise can't. Doubts you aren't supposed to have, questions you aren't supposed to ask. Feelings or opinions that would get you laughed at by the group or reprimanded by the authorities

Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you've never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can't wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful. There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it's like being young again. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn't exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day's work and always brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there's no need for continuous conversation, but you find you're quite content in just having them nearby. Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon. You open your heart knowing that there's a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that's so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.

It doesn't interest me
what you do for a living.
I want to know
what you ache for
and if you dare to dream
of meeting your heart's longing.

It doesn't interest me
how old you are.
I want to know
if you will risk
looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn't interest me
what planets are
squaring your moon...
I want to know
if you have touched
the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened
by life's betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know
if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know
if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you
to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations
of being human.

It doesn't interest me
if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear
the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.
I want to know
if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,
“Yes.”

It doesn't interest me
to know where you live
or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn't interest me
who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn't interest me
where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know
what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know
if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like
the company you keep
in the empty moments.