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.
Remember, any time your emotional life is a function of someone else's weaknesses, you disempower yourself and empower those weaknesses to continue to mess [up] your life ... Again, yesterday holds tomorrow hostage.
(Stephen R. Covey, The 8th Habit, p. 44)
30 March 2016
Vision is the best manifestation of creative imagination and the primary motivation of human action. It's the ability to see beyond our present reality, to create, to invent what does not yet exist, to become what we are not yet ... It gives us capacity to live out of our imagination instead of our memory.
(Stephen R. Covey, First Things First, p. 103-4)
29 March 2016
We have the obligation to pass on the environment to the next generation. We are only brief sojourners on this planet and must consider what happens after we are gone.
(Father Thomas Keating, Invitation to Love, p. 125)
28 March 2016
As you acquire objects and you use them, you should keep in mind that they are the products of people's work. When you damage or destroy these objects, you damage or destroy the toil, and this part of the life, of other people.
(Leo Tolstoy, A Calendar of Wisdom, 25 March)
24 March 2016
The pleasures of the rich are often acquired by the tears of the poor.
The creation of the world would have been a very bad act were it right for rich people to live off the work of the poor, and yet think that they were the benefactors.
Wealth is created by the concentration of human labor; usually one people produce labor, and others concentrate it. This is called “the division of labor” by contemporary wise people.
There is something wrong with the creation of this world, because the rich people think that they are the benefactors of the poor, but in fact those rich are fed and dressed by the work of these poor and live in luxury created for them by the poor.
Turn off the TV and read a book. Your mind needs that, because one of the things that happens when you turn off the TV is you will create space for your mind to have other experiences. Read a book that will really stretch your mind and cause you to think noble and honorable thoughts about what's true about God [and life].
(John Ortberg, Now What? p. 185)
22 March 2016
A society cannot live without a united faith and purpose. All social activity cannot really improve our social life if it is not based on the foundations established by religion (Giuseppe Mazzini)
If you see that some aspect of your society is bad, and you want to improve it, there is only one way to do so: you have to improve people. And in order to improve people, you begin with only one thing: you can become better yourself.
(Leo Tolstoy, A Calendar of Wisdom, 17 March)
21 March 2016
Tremendous happiness and peace of mind are the results of loving service to others.
Nobody can live fully and happily who lives only unto himself or herself.
(Gordon B. Hinckley, Stand A Little Taller, 16 July)
19 March 2016
Uncle Jimmie's Tree - photo by Richard E. Henthorn
Any anxious feeling is a signal that needs attention. It means there's something going on, and it's a way our bodies [and our brains] communicate that they are being overwhelmed.
(Amy E. Dean, Night Light, 6 July)
18 March 2016
Real wisdom is not the knowledge of everything, but the knowledge of which things in life are necessary, which are less necessary, and which are completely unnecessary to know. Among the most necessary knowledge is the knowledge of how to live well, that is, how to produce the least possible evil and the greatest goodness in one's life. At present, people study useless sciences, but forget to study this, the most important knowledge.
I write down experiences I don't want to forget: my haircut on Thursday, things my kids have said and done, seeds of ideas for future articles or books. These are things I want to remember. I need pen and paper (or a keyboard) to keep them from fading into oblivion.
A written record is essential to keeping ideas alive. The evangelist knew this; in recording Christ’s life, they altered history. Our own records don't have that reach or resonance, but our scribbles are worth cherishing. They show us where we've been and where we still want to go.
Write down something that happened recently that you don't want to forget. Fold it up and tuck it away knowing that someday, you'll find it again.
(Ginny Kubitz Moyer in Daily Inspiration for Women, 14 March)
This process will soon become a habit for you as you learn to bring attention to the moment. You will begin to notice the thoughts that come and go as you go about your everyday life. And you will begin to recognize your negative thoughts and how they affect you.
Our leaders want to fight evil with evil ─ with punishments, prisons, executions, and so on. However, doing so only makes the punishers and the punished more and more cruel.
Imagine thinking that a group of people is bad and that you can improve them by force. They may in turn think the same about you. Why improve them and not yourself?
It may appear that violence brings justice, but it only seems that way. In reality, the only thing that leads to justice is living a free life.
Why is most religion perverted, and why is morality in decline? There is only one reason: it is because people believe in living a life based on violence.
The prejudice of violence passes from one generation to the next and continues its harm. People brought up with violence grow used to the idea that their adult lives should be filled with it.
Each act of violence not only fails to calm us down but brings increasingly more violence into our lives. Therefore, it is clear that we cannot change or improve our lives through violence. We lash out for revenge, not self-improvement.
Not only Christ but all the wise man in the world ─ Buddhist, Brahman, Taoist, and the ancient Greeks ─ taught that intelligent people should respond with good to evil.
It is clear that violence and murder make people indignant, and yet they repay violence and murder with more violence and murder. Obviously, there is an explanation for this response, but there is no way we can justify it.
The teaching of peace is a natural consequence of the teaching of love.
Many of the bad things people do, they do for themselves. Much worse things people do for their families. However, the most terrible deeds are done for their government and country ─ deception, war, spying, and killing others.
Murder is always murder, no matter why you have to kill. People who promote murder are evil even if they are judges or generals. They also are criminals. We should pity them and reeducate them.
For a wise man, his being is his homeland. He feels good wherever he goes, because his happiness is found within himself, and his spirit.
We can remove the filth from our body with soap. The same thing can be done in our communities: they too should be cleansed.
(Leo Tolstoy, Wise Thoughts for Every Day, 14, 15, 17 July)
I now understand the words of Jesus going: Ye have heard that it hath been said, and ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for tooth’; but I say unto you, do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek turn to him the other also.” Jesus’ meaning is: You have thought that you were acting in a reasonable manner in defending yourself by violence against evil, in tearing out an eye for an eye, by fighting against evil with criminal tribunals, guardians of the peace, armies; but I say unto you, “Renounce violence and have nothing to do with violence; do harm to no one, not even to your enemy.”
(Leo Tolstoy, in Flowers Along the Path, by Esther Carls Dodgen, p. 349)
War and Christianity are not compatible.
War is one of the worst, most terrible things in this world.
War in this world can be stopped not by the ruling establishment, but by those who suffer from the war. They will do the most natural thing: stop obeying orders.
The armed world and the wars it wages will be destroyed one day, but not by the kings or the rulers of this world. War is profitable for them. War will stop the moment the people who suffer from war fully understand that it is evil.
I am learning to trust my instincts and to move away from unpleasant and stressful people, places and things. I no longer have to stay in situations that bring me unhappiness and pain. I am turning around today to see the joy.
Our first objective ... [should] be the development of self-restraint. This carries a top-priority rating. When we speak or act hastily or rashly, the ability to be fair-minded and tolerant evaporates on the spot.
(As Bill Sees It, p. 113)
5 March 2016
In a few hundred years, when the history of our time is written from a long term perspective, it is likely that the most important event those historians will see is not technology, nor the Internet, nor e-commerce. It is an unprecedented change in the human condition. For the first time ─ literally ─ substantial and rapidly growing numbers of people have choices. For the first time, they will have to manage themselves.
“And society is totally unprepared for it.”
(Peter Drucker, in The 8th Habit, by Stephen R. Covey, p. 12)
It is better not to read any books than to read many and believe them all. You can be a clever man without a single book, but if you believe all that is written in books, you can quickly become a fool.
(Leo Tolstoy, Wise Thoughts For Every Day, 19 June)
1 March 2016