“The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.”
― Albert Einstein
“In my father’s last letter he said that the world is run by those willing to take the responsibility for the running of it. If it is life that you feel you are missing I can tell you where to find it. In the law courts, in business, in government. There is nothing occurring in the streets. Nothing but a dumbshow composed of the helpless and the impotent.”
― Cormac McCarthy, Suttree
I was walking through downtown Dallas with a group of folks doing a photo walk – everybody with their cameras dangling, strolling, shooting – when on a bench in Main Street Garden Park I saw a tattered spiral notebook. I picked it up and saw that it was full of writing.
There wasn’t much time, everyone else was moving on – so all I could do is skim through. It was full of nice handwriting – page after page of misery and despair set down in cursive. I briefly thought of taking it with me so I could read it completely – maybe learn something.
But I didn’t. That didn’t seem right – the owner might come back for it. So I snapped a quick photo of the first page and set it back on the bench, exactly where it was.
I am at Austin Street Shelter, I’ve been here since March 23 with a couple of detours. They say it will be at least 6 more months before I get an apt. I hope this works out. I’m tired. I’m old.I need a place to call my own. I’m not interested in any relationship with men ever again. I’m thinking I might buy a trailer. I’m gonna start saving all I can…
“It is one of the unexpected disasters of the modern age that our new unparalleled access to information has come at the price of our capacity to concentrate on anything much. The deep, immersive thinking which produced many of civilization’s most important achievements has come under unprecedented assault. We are almost never far from a machine that guarantees us a mesmerizing and libidinous escape from reality. The feelings and thoughts which we have omitted to experience while looking at our screens are left to find their revenge in involuntary twitches and our ever-decreasing ability to fall asleep when we should.”
― Alain de Botton, Religion for Atheists: A Non-Believer’s Guide to the Uses of Religion
“We are stuck with technology when what we really want is just stuff that works.”
― Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt
You can’t do sketches enough. Sketch everything and keep your curiosity fresh.
—-John Singer Sargent
“I have lots of things to teach you now, in case we ever meet, concerning the message that was transmitted to me under a pine tree in North Carolina on a cold winter moonlit night. It said that Nothing Ever Happened, so don’t worry. It’s all like a dream. Everything is ecstasy, inside. We just don’t know it because of our thinking-minds. But in our true blissful essence of mind is known that everything is alright forever and forever and forever. Close your eyes, let your hands and nerve-ends drop, stop breathing for 3 seconds, listen to the silence inside the illusion of the world, and you will remember the lesson you forgot, which was taught in immense milky way soft cloud innumerable worlds long ago and not even at all. It is all one vast awakened thing. I call it the golden eternity. It is perfect. We were never really born, we will never really die. It has nothing to do with the imaginary idea of a personal self, other selves, many selves everywhere: Self is only an idea, a mortal idea. That which passes into everything is one thing. It’s a dream already ended. There’s nothing to be afraid of and nothing to be glad about. I know this from staring at mountains months on end. They never show any expression, they are like empty space. Do you think the emptiness of space will ever crumble away? Mountains will crumble, but the emptiness of space, which is the one universal essence of mind, the vast awakenerhood, empty and awake, will never crumble away because it was never born.”
― Jack Kerouac, The Portable Jack Kerouac
“I come to a red light, tempted to go through it, then stop once I see a billboard sign that I don’t remember seeing and I look up at it. All it says is ‘Disappear Here’ and even though it’s probably an ad for some resort, it still freaks me out a little and I step on the gas really hard and the car screeches as I leave the light.”
― Bret Easton Ellis, Less Than Zero
“It is not for me to judge another man’s life. I must judge, I must choose, I must spurn, purely for myself. For myself, alone.”
― Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha
“Butterflies are not insects,’ Captain John Sterling said soberly. ‘They are self-propelled flowers.”
― Robert A. Heinlein, The Cat Who Walks Through Walls