25 February 2013

From Courtney Martin's Reinventing Feminism TEDTalk

"I won't stand for your desperation." - Jere Martin

You are more intelligent, more creative, and more resilient than that.

"We are whiplashed between an arrogant overestimation of ourselves and a servile underestimation of ourselves." Parker Palmer

"Of course it's a failure. But how good a failure is it?" -Cornel West

10 February 2011

Optical Delusion of Consciousness

"A human being is part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest. A kind of optical delusion of consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from the prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. The true value of a human being is determined by the measure and the sense in which they have obtained liberation from the self. We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if humanity is to survive."
-Albert Einstein, 1954

Rightness of the Work

"Do not depend on the hope of results. You may have to face the fact that your work will be apparently worthless and even achieve no result at all, if not perhaps results opposite to what you expect. As you get used to this idea, you start more and more to concentrate not on the results, but on the value, the rightness, the truth of the work itself. You gradually struggle less and less for an idea and more and more for specific people. In the end, it is the reality of personal relationship that saves everything."
Thomas Merton

05 October 2010

Velveteen Rabbit

The Skin Horse had lived longer in the nursery than any of the others. He was so old that his brown coat was bald in patches and showed the seams underneath, and most of the hairs in his tail had been pulled out to string bead necklaces. He was wise, for he had seen a long succession of mechanical toys arrive to boast and swagger, and by-and-by break their mainsprings and pass away, and he knew that they were only toys, and would never turn into anything else. For nursery magic is very strange and wonderful, and only those playthings that are old and wise and experienced like the Skin Horse understand all about it.

"What is REAL?" asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. "Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?"

"Real isn't how you are made," said the Skin Horse. "It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real."

"Does it hurt?" asked the Rabbit.

"Sometimes," said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. "When you are Real you don't mind being hurt."

"Does it happen all at once, like being wound up," he asked, "or bit by bit?"

"It doesn't happen all at once," said the Skin Horse. "You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand."

"I suppose you are real?" said the Rabbit. And then he wished he had not said it, for he thought the Skin Horse might be sensitive.

But the Skin Horse only smiled.

18 September 2010

It Doesn't Interest Me

The Invitation by Oriah

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,
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.

22 August 2010

Version of an Optimist

I have become my own version of an optimist. If I can't make it through one door, I'll go through another door - or I'll make a door. Something terrific will come no matter how dark the present.
-Rabindranath Tagore

12 August 2010

Marilyn Breaking Down Double Standards

Lorelei Lee -- Marilyn Monroe
Gus Esmond -- Tommy Noonan
Mr. Esmond Sr. -- Taylor Holmes

Mr. Esmond Sr.: Young lady, you don't fool me one bit.

Lorelei Lee: I'm not trying to, but I bet I could.

Mr. Esmond Sr.: No, you might convince this jackass you love him but you'll never convince me.

Lorelei Lee: That's too bad, because I do love him.

Mr. Esmond Sr.: Certainly, for his money!

Lorelei Lee: No, honestly.

Mr. Esmond Sr.: Have you got the nerve to stand there and expect me to believe that you don't want to marry my son for his money?

Lorelei Lee: It's true.

Mr. Esmond Sr.: Then what do you want to marry him for?

Lorelei Lee: I want to marry him for your money!

Gus Esmond: You see--Oh, Lorelei!

Lorelei Lee: You see, that's why we have to have his consent, silly.

Mr. Esmond Sr.: Well, at least we're getting down to brass tax. You admitt that all your after is money?

Lorelei Lee: No, I don't. Aren't you funny? Don't you know that a man being rich is like a girl being pretty? You might not marry a girl just because she's pretty, but my goodness, doesn't it help? And if you had a daughter, wouldn't you rather she didn't marry a poor man?

Mr. Esmond Sr.: But I--

Lorelei Lee: You'd want her to have the most wonderful things in the world and to be very happy. Oh why is it wrong for me to want those things?

Mr. Esmond Sr.: Well I can see that.. Say, they told me you were stupid. You don't sound stupid to me.

Lorelei Lee: I can be smart when it's important, but most men don't like it.

01 August 2010

Dizziness of Freedom

"Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom." - Soren Kierkegaard

30 July 2010

Accept All That Is Different Between Us

"Our ability to live in peace with each other depends first and foremost on our ability to accept all that is different between us. I want to get closer to you, but let me be who I am. I welcome you coming closer to me, while respecting who you are. On our own individual paths we are all looking for the bread, the water, the wind and a dignified life. And yes, we all cling to love." - Idan Raichel

13 June 2010


"Each one of us can make a contribution. Too frequently, we think we have to do spectacular things." -Desmond Tutu

24 May 2010


"Creativity can solve almost any problem. The creative act, the defeat of habit by originality, overcomes everything." - George Lois

Performative Femininity

"We perform femininity, and not only does it not succeed in bringing about the desired result, I think it’s actually counter-productive to our real goals. Particularly when we’re talking about relationships—lots of people really do want love, and close and serious romantic connections, and femininity is supposed to help us be lovable and desirable. And sure, it might help in attracting a man, but the culture of performative femininity actually makes it less likely that men will regard us as complete human beings, thus making it almost impossible for us to have real emotional intimacy with them, the kind that comes from being able to regard each other as equals."
Silvana at Tiger Beatdown

23 May 2010

Committed Citizens

"Never doubt that a small group of committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."- Margaret Mead

Time-Tested Beauty Tips

Time Tested Beauty Tips
by Sam Levenson

For attractive lips,
speak words of kindness.

For lovely eyes,
seek out the good in people.

For a slim figure,
share your food with the hungry.

For beautiful hair,
let a child run his fingers through it once a day.

For poise,
walk with the knowledge you'll never walk alone.

People, even more than things,
have to be restored, renewed, revived,
reclaimed and redeemed and redeemed.
Never throw out anybody.

Remember, if you ever need a helping hand,
you'll find one at the end of your arm.
As you grow older you will discover that you have two hands;
One for helping yourself, the other for helping others.

13 May 2010

Micah 6:8

No, O people, the LORD has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.
Micah 6:8

05 May 2010

Real Adventure

"Adventure is a path. Real adventure - self determined, self motivated, often risky - forces you to have firsthand encounters with the world. The world the way it is, not the way you imagine it. Your body will collide with the earth and you will bear witness. In this way you will be compelled to grapple with the limitless kindness and the bottomless cruelty of humankind and perhaps realize that you, yourself, are capable of both. This will change you. Nothing will ever again be black and white." - Mark Jenkins

19 April 2010

Moving Water

When you do things from your soul,
you feel a river moving in you, a joy.
When actions come from another section,
the feeling disappears.
Don't let others lead you.
They may be blind or, worse, vultures.
Reach for the rope of God.
And what is that?
Putting aside self-will.
Because of willfulness
people sit in jail,
the trapped bird's wings are tied,
fish sizzle in the skillet.
The anger of police is willfulness.
You've seen a magistrate
inflict visible punishment.
Now see the invisible.
If you could leave your selfishness,
you would see how
you've been torturing your soul.

We are born and live inside black water in a well.
How could we know what an open field of sunlight is?
Don't insist on going where you think you want to go.
Ask the way to the spring.
Your living pieces will form a harmony.
There is a moving palace that floats in the air
with balconies and clear water flowing through,
infinity everywhere, yet contained
under a single tent.