September 10

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Quotes of the day from previous years:

It is now possible for a flight attendant to get a pilot pregnant. ~ Richard Ferris
He that would live in peace and at ease, must not speak all he knows, nor judge all he sees. ~ Benjamin Franklin
I strongly reject any conceptual scheme that places our options on a line, and holds that the only alternative to a pair of extreme positions lies somewhere between them. More fruitful perspectives often require that we step off the line to a site outside the dichotomy. ~ Stephen Jay Gould (born 10 September 1941)
Organisms are not billiard balls, propelled by simple and measurable external forces to predictable new positions on life's pool table. Sufficiently complex systems have greater richness. Organisms have a history that constrains their future in myriad, subtle ways. ~ Stephen Jay Gould (born 10 September 1941)
The river of truth is always splitting up into arms that reunite. Islanded between them, the inhabitants argue for a lifetime as to which is the mainstream. ~ Cyril Connolly (born 10 September 1903)
  • Loosely sourced variant originally proposed by Kalki, correctly sourced version from a published edition of The Unquiet Grave (1944) proposed by InvisibleSun
Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self. ~ Cyril Connolly
It is the man of science, eager to have his every opinion regenerated, his every idea rationalized, by drinking at the fountain of fact, and devoting all the energies of his life to the cult of truth, not as he understands it, but as he does not yet understand it, that ought properly to be called a philosopher. ~ Charles Sanders Peirce
The entire universe is perfused with signs, if it is not composed exclusively of signs. ~ Charles Sanders Peirce
The idea does not belong to the soul; it is the soul that belongs to the idea. ~ Charles Sanders Peirce
I stood willingly and gladly in the characters of everything — other people, trees, clouds. And this is what I learned, that the world's otherness is antidote to confusion — that standing within this otherness — the beauty and the mystery of the world, out in the fields or deep inside books — can re-dignify the worst-stung heart.
~ Mary Oliver ~
Between too early and too late, there is never more than a moment.
~ Franz Werfel ~
You can have the other wordschance, luck, coincidence, serendipity. I'll take grace. I don't know what it is exactly, but I'll take it.
~ Mary Oliver ~
What I want in my life is to be willing to be dazzled — to cast aside the weight of facts and maybe even to float a little above this difficult world.
~ Mary Oliver ~
For those who believe, no explanation is necessary; for those who do not believe, no explanation is possible.
~ Franz Werfel ~
You'd better hope and pray
That you make it safe back to your own world
You'd better hope and pray
That you'll wake one day in your own world
Because when you sleep at night
They don't hear your cries in your own world
Only time will tell
If you can break the spell back in your own world.
~ Siobhan Fahey ~
Magnify the divine mystery and the holiness of mankind.
~ Franz Werfel ~
The most regretful people on earth are those who felt the call to creative work, who felt their own creative power restive and uprising, and gave to it neither power nor time.
~ Mary Oliver ~
Let us not pretend to doubt in philosophy what we do not doubt in our hearts.
~ Charles Sanders Peirce ~
We live in an essential and unresolvable tension between our unity with nature and our dangerous uniqueness. Systems that attempt to place and make sense of us by focusing exclusively either on the uniqueness or the unity are doomed to failure. But we must not stop asking and questing because the answers are complex and ambiguous.
~ Stephen Jay Gould ~
In a little over a week's time we will come together as a nation, as a Commonwealth and indeed a global community, to lay my beloved mother to rest. In our sorrow, let us remember and draw strength from the light of her example. On behalf of all my family, I can only offer the most sincere and heartfelt thanks for your condolences and support. They mean more to me than I can ever possibly express.
And to my darling mama, as you begin your last great journey to join my dear late papa, I want simply to say this: thank you. Thank you for your love and devotion to our family and to the family of nations you have served so diligently all these years. May "flights of angels sing thee to thy rest."
~ Charles III ~
  • proposed by Kalki; in regard of his ascension to the throne, and his mother's recent death.
History, as well as life itself, is complicated; neither life nor history is an enterprise for those who seek simplicity and consistency.
~ Jared Diamond ~
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Evolutionists make no claim for perpetual truth, though creationists often do (and then attack us for a style of argument that they themselves favor). In science, 'fact' can only mean 'confirmed to such a degree that it would be perverse to withhold provisional assent.' I suppose that apples might start to rise tomorrow, but the possibility does not merit equal time in physics classrooms. ~ Stephen Jay Gould (date of birth)

  • 3 Kalki 16:34, 30 August 2005 (UTC) with a strong lean toward 4.
  • 3 InvisibleSun 02:30, 7 September 2006 (UTC)
  • 1 Zarbon 22:14, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Each of the major sciences has contributed an essential ingredient in our long retreat from an initial belief in our own cosmic importance. Astronomy defined our home as a small planet tucked away in one corner of an average galaxy among millions; biology took away our status as paragons created in the image of God; geology gave us the immensity of time and taught us how little of it our own species has occupied. ~ Stephen Jay Gould (born 10 September 1941)

  • 3 Kalki 16:34, 30 August 2005 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 02:30, 7 September 2006 (UTC)
  • 2 Zarbon 22:14, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

We inhabit a complex world. Some boundaries are sharp and permit clean and definite distinctions. But nature also includes continua that cannot be neatly parceled into two piles of unambiguous yeses and noes. Biologists have rejected, as fatally flawed in principle, all attempts by anti-abortionists to define an unambiguous 'beginning of life,' because we know so well that the sequence from ovulation or spermatogenesis to birth is an unbreakable continuum—and surely no one will define masturbation as murder. ~ Stephen Jay Gould (born 10 September 1941)

  • 3 Kalki 16:34, 30 August 2005 (UTC) with a strong lean toward 4.
  • 2 InvisibleSun 02:30, 7 September 2006 (UTC)
  • 1 because I'm not too fond of seeing a quote dealing with masturbation as QOTD. But the message is rather understandable. Zarbon 22:14, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

We fear something before we hate; a child who fears noises becomes the man who hates them. ~ Cyril Connolly (born September 10, 1903)

  • 3 InvisibleSun 02:30, 7 September 2006 (UTC)
  • 2 ♌︎Kalki ⚓︎ 22:47, 31 August 2012 (UTC) 3 Kalki 16:54, 9 September 2007 (UTC) but still with a lean toward 3 — there just are many more on the page that I prefer more.
  • 3 because this is very true. And as Yoda of Star Wars described it so well, fear leads to the dark side, something I find exquisitely full of moral worth. Zarbon 22:14, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

'Dry again?' said the Crab to the Rock-Pool. 'So would you be,' replied the Rock-Pool, 'if you had to satisfy, twice a day, the insatiable sea.' ~ Cyril Connolly

  • 3 InvisibleSun 02:30, 7 September 2006 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 16:54, 9 September 2007 (UTC)
  • 1 Zarbon 22:14, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

A stone lies in a river; a piece of wood is jammed against it; dead leaves, drifting logs, and branches caked with mud collect; weeds settle there, and soon birds have made a nest and are feeding their young among the blossoming water plants. Then the river rises and the earth is washed away. The birds depart, the flowers wither, the branches are dislodged and drift downward; no trace is left of the floating island but a stone submerged by the water; — such is our personality. ~ Cyril Connolly

  • 4 InvisibleSun 02:30, 7 September 2006 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 16:54, 9 September 2007 (UTC)
  • 1 Zarbon 22:14, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

It is after creation, in the elation of success, or the gloom of failure, that love becomes essential. ~ Cyril Connolly (born 10 September 1903)

  • 3 Kalki 12:14, 10 September 2006 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 00:41, 11 September 2006 (UTC)
  • 1 Zarbon 22:14, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

No city should be too large for a man to walk out of in a morning. ~ Cyril Connolly (born 10 September 1903)

  • 3 Kalki 12:14, 10 September 2006 (UTC) with a lean toward 4.
  • 3 InvisibleSun 00:41, 11 September 2006 (UTC)
  • 1 Zarbon 22:14, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Yes, it's hard to write. But it's harder not to. ~ Carl Van Doren

  • 2 Zarbon 19:15, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 23:21, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 23:07, 9 September 2009 (UTC)

The tree of liberty only grows when watered by the blood of tyrants. ~ Bertrand Barère de Vieuzac

  • 2 Zarbon 19:15, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 InvisibleSun 23:21, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 Kalki 23:07, 9 September 2009 (UTC)

It is only the dead who do not return. ~ Bertrand Barère de Vieuzac

  • 2 Zarbon 19:15, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 InvisibleSun 23:21, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 Kalki 23:07, 9 September 2009 (UTC)

I carry on in my own narrow little tunnel and we have very different experiences of life even though we live together. ~ Siobhan Fahey

  • 2 Zarbon 19:15, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 InvisibleSun 23:21, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 23:07, 9 September 2009 (UTC)

If this world is wearing thin
And you're thinking of escape
I'll go anywhere with you
Just wrap me up in chains
But if you try to go alone
Don't think I'll understand

(Stay) Stay with me
~ Siobhan Fahey ~

  • 3 Kalki 23:11, 9 September 2009 (UTC)

Happiness is … the grace of being permitted to unfold … all the spiritual powers planted within us. ~ Franz Werfel

Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable. ~ Mary Oliver

I believe in kindness. Also in mischief. Also in singing, especially when singing is not necessarily prescribed. ~ Mary Oliver

Instructions for living a life: Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it. ~ Mary Oliver

My work is loving the world. Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird — equal seekers of sweetness ~ Mary Oliver

I don't want to end up simply having visited this world. ~ Mary Oliver

Every day I see or hear something that more or less kills me with delight, that leaves me like a needle in the haystack of light. ~ Mary Oliver

Light is an invitation to happiness, and that happiness, when it’s done right, is a kind of holiness. ~ Mary Oliver

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? ~ Mary Oliver

Our idea of anything is our idea of its sensible effects; and if we fancy that we have any other we deceive ourselves, and mistake a mere sensation accompanying the thought for a part of the thought itself. It is absurd to say that thought has any meaning unrelated to its only function. ~ Charles Sanders Peirce

Every day I was surrounded by the beautiful crying forth of the ideas of God, one of which was you.
~ Mary Oliver ~

To live in this world you must be able to do three things: to love what is mortal; to hold it against your bones knowing your own life depends on it; and, when the time comes to let it go, to let it go.
~ Mary Oliver ~

People often ask, "What is the single most important environmental/population problem facing the world today?" A flip answer would be, "The single most important problem is our misguided focus on identifying the single most important problem!"
~ Jared Diamond ~