Wikiquote:Quote of the day/December 2013

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December 1
Rex Stout 1975.jpg  
Орхидея.jpg

Why taunt me? Why upbraid me? I am merely a genius, not a god. A genius may discover the hidden secrets and display them; only a god could create new ones.

~ Rex Stout ~
in
~ Fer-de-Lance ~

Bothrops neuwiedi diporus fer de lance 91.jpg
  A Nero Wolfe Mystery brownstone on Upper West Side.jpg


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December 2
Paul Watson portrait.jpg  
Japan Factory Ship Nisshin Maru Whaling Mother and Calf.jpg

We're just a conceited naked ape, but in our minds we're some "divine legend" and we see ourselves as some sort of god, seeing we can decide what will live and what will die, what will be saved and what will be destroyed, but honestly we're just a bunch of primates out of control.

~ Paul Watson ~

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After the use of this, the author's page was amended to read:
I think the problem is that we don't really understand what we are. In essence we're just a conceited, naked ape. But in our minds we're some sort of "divine legend", and we see ourselves as some sort of god. That we can walk around the earth deciding who will live and who will die and what will be destroyed and what will be saved. But the fact is we're just a bunch of primates out of control.


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December 3
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Words, as is well known, are the great foes of reality. I have been for many years a teacher of languages. It is an occupation which at length becomes fatal to whatever share of imagination, observation, and insight an ordinary person may be heir to. To a teacher of languages there comes a time when the world is but a place of many words and man appears a mere talking animal not much more wonderful than a parrot.

~ Joseph Conrad ~
in
~ The Nigger of the 'Narcissus' ~
  Puerto Rican parrot.jpg


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December 4
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Words, words, words, are the stumbling-blocks in the way of truth. Until you think of things as they are, and not of the words that misrepresent them, you cannot think rightly. Words produce the appearance of hard and fast lines where there are none. Words divide; thus we call this a man, that an ape, that a monkey, while they are all only differentiations of the same thing. To think of a thing they must be got rid of: they are the clothes that thoughts wear — only the clothes. I say this over and over again, for there is nothing of more importance. Other men's words will stop you at the beginning of an investigation. A man may play with words all his life, arranging them and rearranging them like dominoes. If I could think to you without words you would understand me better.

~ Samuel Butler ~

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December 5
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We're not trying to entertain the critics ... I'll take my chances with the public.

~ Walt Disney ~

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December 6
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Vain is the chiming of forgotten bells
That the wind sways above a ruined shrine.
Vainer his voice in whom no longer dwells
Hunger that craves immortal Bread and Wine.

Light songs we breathe that perish with our breath
Out of our lips that have not kissed the rod.
They shall not live who have not tasted death.
They only sing who are struck dumb by God.

~ Joyce Kilmer ~

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December 7
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In a three-minute stretch between commercials, or in seven hundred words, it is impossible to present unfamiliar thoughts or surprising conclusions with the argument and evidence required to afford them credibility. Regurgitation of welcome pieties faces no such problem.

~ Noam Chomsky ~

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December 8
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It is difficult to speak of what is common in a way of your own.

~ Horace ~

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December 9
Dream at Sutton Manor Colliery outside of St Helens.jpg
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Aerial view from Paramotor of Uffington White Horse - geograph.org.uk - 305467.jpg

I neither oblige the belief of other person, nor overhastily subscribe mine own. Nor have I stood with others computing or collating years and chronologies, lest I should be vainly curious about the time and circumstance of things, whereof the substance is so much in doubt. By this time, like one who had set out on his way by night, and travelled through a region of smooth or idle dreams, our history now arrives on the confines, where daylight and truth meet us with a clear dawn, representing to our view, though at a far distance, true colours and shapes.

~ John Milton ~

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  The All-Seeing Eye - geograph.org.uk - 848046.jpg
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December 10
George MacDonald by Jeffrey of London c1870.jpg  
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The best thing you can do for your fellow, next to rousing his conscience, is — not to give him things to think about, but to wake things up that are in him; or say, to make him think things for himself.

~ George MacDonald ~

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December 11
Andal Temple Gopuram.jpg  
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We shall not look at caste or religion. All human beings in this land — whether they be those who preach the vedas or who belong to other castes — are one.

~ Subramanya Bharathi ~

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  Sunrise Kanyakumari.JPG


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December 12
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Our country is the world — our countrymen are all mankind.

~ William Lloyd Garrison ~

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December 13
Heinrich-heine 1.jpg  
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When words leave off, music begins.

~ Heinrich Heine ~

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  William-Adolphe Bouguereau (1825-1905) - Song of the Angels (1881).jpg


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December 14
John Reinhard Weguelin – The Magic of Pan's Flute (1905).jpg  
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Some say the Gods are just a myth
but guess Who I've been dancing with...
The Great God Pan is alive!

~ Mike Scott ~

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  Ernst Klimt - Pan tröstet Psyche, 1892.jpg


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December 15
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Belief has its structures, and its symbols change. Its tradition changes. All the relationships within these forms are inter-dependent. We look at the symbols, we hope to read them, we hope for sharing and communication.

~ Muriel Rukeyser ~

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December 16
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Today we live in a society in which spurious realities are manufactured by the media, by governments, by big corporations, by religious groups, political groups … So I ask, in my writing, What is real? Because unceasingly we are bombarded with pseudo-realities manufactured by very sophisticated people using very sophisticated electronic mechanisms. I do not distrust their motives; I distrust their power. They have a lot of it. And it is an astonishing power: that of creating whole universes, universes of the mind. I ought to know. I do the same thing.

~ Philip K. Dick ~

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December 17
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Every discovery opens a new field for investigation of facts, shows us the imperfection of our theories. It has justly been said, that the greater the circle of light, the greater the boundary of darkness by which it is surrounded.

~ Humphry Davy ~

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December 18
Klee, Angelus novus.png  
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The main thing now is not to paint precociously but to be, or at least become, an individual. The art of mastering life is the prerequisite for all further forms of expression, whether they are paintings, sculptures, tragedies, or musical compositions.

~ Paul Klee ~

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  Heroic Roses.JPG


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December 19
The Last of the Spirits-John Leech, 1843.jpg  
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"Men's courses will foreshadow certain ends, to which, if persevered in, they must lead", said Scrooge. "But if the courses be departed from, the ends will change. Say it is thus with what you show me!"
The Spirit was immovable as ever.

~ Charles Dickens ~
in
~ A Christmas Carol ~

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  Tiny-tim-dickens.jpg


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December 20
Donetsk-07.JPG  
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You call me a Circle; but in reality I am not a Circle, but an infinite number of Circles... For even a Sphere — which is my proper name in my own country — if he manifest himself at all to an inhabitant of Flatland — must needs manifest himself as a Circle.

~ Edwin Abbott Abbott ~

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December 21
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Finally we shall place the Sun himself at the center of the Universe. All this is suggested by the systematic procession of events and the harmony of the whole Universe, if only we face the facts, as they say, "with both eyes open."

~ Nicolaus Copernicus ~

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December 22
The dance to the music of time c. 1640.jpg
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For one heart beat the
Heart was free and moved itself. O love,
I who am lost and damned with words,
Whose words are a business and an art,
I have no words. These words, this poem, this
Is all confusion and ignorance.
But I know that coached by your sweet heart,
My heart beat one free beat and sent
Through all my flesh the blood of truth.

~ Kenneth Rexroth ~

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December 23
MT waterfall.jpg  
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Eventually, all things merge into one, and a river runs through it. The river was cut by the world's great flood and runs over rocks from the basement of time. On some of the rocks are timeless raindrops. Under the rocks are the words, and some of the words are theirs.
I am haunted by waters.

~ Norman Maclean ~

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December 24
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If what distinguishes the greatest poets is their powerful and profound application of ideas to life, which surely no good critic will deny, then to prefix to the word ideas here the term moral makes hardly any difference, because human life itself is in so preponderating a degree moral.
It is important, therefore, to hold fast to this: that poetry is at bottom a criticism of life; that the greatness of a poet lies in his powerful and beautiful application of ideas to life — to the question, How to live. Morals are often treated in a narrow and false fashion, they are bound up with systems of thought and belief which have had their day, they are fallen into the hands of pedants and professional dealers, they grow tiresome to some of us … the best cure for our delusion is to let our minds rest upon that great and inexhaustible word life, until we learn to enter into its meaning. A poetry of revolt against moral ideas is a poetry of revolt against life; a poetry of indifference towards moral ideas is a poetry of indifference towards life.

~ Matthew Arnold ~

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December 25
Annunciation to the Shepherds.jpg
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And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

~ Gospel of Luke ~

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December 26
Caspar David Friedrich - Wanderer above the sea of fog.jpg  
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No man is great enough or wise enough for any of us to surrender our destiny to. The only way in which anyone can lead us is to restore to us the belief in our own guidance.

~ Henry Miller ~

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December 27
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What the world needs is more geniuses with humility; there are so few of us left.

~ Oscar Levant ~

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  Rochdale Unitarian Church "Humility".jpg


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December 28
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A good poem is a tautology. It expands one word by adding a number which clarify it, thus making a new word which has never before been spoken. The seed-word is always so ordinary that hardly anyone perceives it. Classical odes grow from and or because, romantic lyrics from but or if. Immature verses expand a personal pronoun ad nauseam, the greatest works bring glory to a common verb.

~ Alasdair Gray ~

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December 29
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Saints are not made by accident. Still less is a Christian martyrdom the effect of a man's will to become a Saint, as a man by willing and contriving may become a ruler of men. Ambition fortifies the will of man to become ruler over other men: it operates with deception, cajolery, and violence, it is the action of impurity upon impurity. Not so in Heaven. A martyr, a saint, is always made by the design of God, for His love of men, to warn them and to lead them, to bring them back to His ways. A martyrdom is never the design of man; for the true martyr is he who has become the instrument of God, who has lost his will in the will of God, not lost it but found it, for he has found freedom in submission to God. The martyr no longer desires anything for himself, not even the glory of martyrdom.

~ T. S. Eliot ~

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December 30
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The true Vedantic spirit does not start out with a system of preconceived ideas. It possesses absolute liberty and unrivaled courage among religions with regard to the facts to be observed and the diverse hypotheses it has laid down for their coordination. Never having been hampered by a priestly order, each man has been entirely free to search wherever he pleased for the spiritual explanation of the spectacle of the universe.

~ Romain Rolland ~

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December 31
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The most important thing for the world today in my opinion is a spiritual regeneration which would reestablish a feeling of good faith among men generally. Discouraged people are in sore need of the inspiration of great principles. Such leadership can be the rallying point against intolerance, against distrust, against that fatal insecurity that leads to war. It is to be hoped that the democratic nations can provide the necessary leadership.

~ George Marshall ~

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QOTD by month + Suggestions for : January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December

Today is Saturday, August 2, 2014; it is now 00:26 (UTC)