The purpose of Mr. Dickie's Blog is to provide a place where I can post quotations I like and write about things that are on my mind. As of the summer of 2011 I have NetworkedBlogs posting a link to this blog to Facebook.
Too much of my life has been spent in dwelling upon the faults of others. This is a most subtle and perverse form of self-satisfaction, which permits us to remain comfortably unaware of our own defects. Too often we are heard to say, "If it weren't for him (or her), how happy I'd be.
(As Bill Sees It, p. 44)
29 January 2016
It doesn't take much to evoke the eternal: carefully chosen music, candles, paintings, poetry, stories, fabrics, clothing - religion has always used these as tools for evoking the sacred. We could easily find ways to honor and celebrate the family: parties, conversations, cards and letters, visits to grave sites, journeys to see family members, honoring family homesteads and possessions, handing furniture and clothing down from generation to generation. These acts are not only practical, they help sustain the family's particular spirituality, and they can be motivated at least in part by a sensitivity to the family's holiness.
Work with respect for your associates, for their opinions, for their beliefs, with appreciation for their problems, and with a desire to help them should they stumble.
(Gordon B. Hinckley, Stand A Little Taller, 30 August)
25 January 2016
Friendship is not essentially a union of personalities, it is an attraction and magnetism of souls. Friendships often begin in a soulful way through the workings of fate. We might “just happen” to meet a person and find even the slimmest basis for a relationship. Over the years, each of us encounters many, many people, and yet only a few become friends, and over a lifetime maybe only a very few become truly intimate friends - soul mates.
Until today, you may have found it easier to provide others with guidance in their time of need than to help yourself. You may not have realized how truly wise you are. Just for today, listen to and heed your own advice. Anything you can tell anyone else probably applies to you too!
(Iyanla Vanzant, Until Today! 20 January)
22 January 2016
Every day the path to your own spirituality starts with clarifying who you are and what you want. Not just things ─ things are easy. I mean the stuff that really matters. Life isn't just about what you can have; it's about what you have to give. What kind of person do you really want to be?
(Oprah Winfrey, Words That Matter, The Editors of The Oprah Magazine, p. 121)
20 January 2016
There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature - the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter.
(Rachel Carson in The Art of the Possible by Alexandra Stoddard, p. 120)
18 January 2016
I've learned that you can't have everything and do everything at the same time. I hope you'll tell yourself the truth about what matters most to you, know that your hours in this life are limited for attaining it ─ Then decide how you’ll use your most precious resource.
(Oprah, Words That Matter, by The Editors of The Oprah Magazine, p. 117)
The coming of winter lies in far more powerful hands than ours. We can do nothing to hasten or prevent it. All we can change is our attitude toward it. And since the divine mystery is the source of all, we can safely trust that, despite its potential to inconvenience us, winter is a gift that is good.
(Margaret Silf, Daily Inspiration for Women, p. 10 January)
If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant; if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome.
(Anne Bradstreet in Everyday Prayers by Rachel Quillin, p. 76)
9 January 2016
Patience is necessary in this life because so much of life is fraught with adversity. No matter how hard we try, our lives will never be without strife and grief. Thus, we should not strive for a peace that is without temptation, or for a life that never feels adversity. Peace is not found by escaping temptations, but by being tried by them. We will have discovered peace when we have been tried and come through the trial of temptation.
(Thomas ‘a Kempis, The Imitation of Christ, found in, Flowers Along the Path, p. 25, by Esther Carls Dodgen)
This is the true joy in life … being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one … being a force of Nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy … I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die. For the harder I work the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no brief candle to me. It's a sort of splendid torch which I've got to hold up for the moment and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to the future generations.
(Words of George Bernard Shaw, page 49, in First Things First, by Stephen R. Covey)
Dying is something we human beings do continuously, not just at the end of our physical lives on this earth. The stages of dying apply equally to any significant change, e.g., retirement, moving to a new city, changing jobs, divorce; change is a regular occurrence in human existence. If you can face and understand your ultimate death, perhaps you can learn to face and deal productively with each change that presents itself in your life.
(Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, in The Art of the Possible, by Alexandra Stoddard, page 142.)
To know how to grow old is the masterwork of wisdom, and one of the most difficult chapters in the great art of living.
The greatest of disadvantages is that we are too prone to welcome everybody else's wrong solution to the problems of life. There is a natural laziness that moves us to accept the easiest solutions ▬ the ones that have common currency among our friends.
(Thomas Merton, No Man Is An Island, p xii)
4 January 2016
For a number of years I have selected books at the beginning of the year for my daily reading program. During the year I keep a lookout for candidates at thrift stores and yard sales. By reading a page or two daily from each book I am able to increase the number of books I read each year. Generally in December, I select more books than I can possibly read and end up setting a few aside. I sometimes add books to the stack, beside the bed, during the year, especially if I discover a book at the county library that I want to read.
I maintain a yearly file of the books I'm reading using the CSVed program.
To recap the books read in 2015 and to list those I'm planning to read in 2016 I created two tables, using Google Docs. I enjoyed the challenge of learning more about how to use the table options of Google Docs. It turned out to be much easier than I expected.
After I downloaded the Google Docs file in PDF format I uploaded it to my Box account. If anyone is interested in the two lists you can view or download them from:
Wherever you are today is perfect. You have been on a journey arriving right here, right now in this moment in time and space. You are here to make a new beginning on our spiritual journey and to experience and accept JOY in your life. You are in a perfect place for spiritual growth and change. Everything you have done in your entire life has brought you to this very moment and is perfect.
(Ruth Fishel, Time For Joy, 1 January)
People can lose their whole lives by being scared about some moment in the future. People waste years being nostalgic about some moment that's gone in the past. Don't spend your moment wishing you could occupy somebody else's moment -- because it doesn't belong to you, and it never will.
I have been retired from the U.S. government for many years. I was a long time paying member of AOL until May 2009. Until October 2008 I had a fairly extensive genealogy website on AOL. They dropped support.
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