Sunday, February 26, 2006

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word,
a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring,
all of which have the potential to turn a life around - Leo Buscaglia

Saturday, February 25, 2006

1881 Nietzsche on Spinoza

I am utterly amazed, utterly enchanted. I have a precursor, and what a precursor! I hardly knew Spinoza: that I should have turned to him just now was inspired by ‘instinct.’ Not only is his over-all tendency like mine — making knowledge the most powerful affect — but in five main points of his doctrine I recognize myself; this most unusual and loneliest thinker is closest to me precisely in these matters: he denies the freedom of the will, teleology, the moral world order, the unegoistic, and evil. Even though the divergencies are admittedly tremendous, they are due more to the differences in time, culture and science. In summa, my solitude, which as on very high mountains, often made it hard for me to breathe and made my blood rush out, is at least a dualitude.

Monday, February 20, 2006

David Lewis writes that “One comes to philosophy already endowed with a stock of existing opinions. It is not the business of philosophy either to undermine or to justify these opinions, to any great extent, but only to try to discover ways of expanding them into an orderly system. A metaphysician’ s analysis of mind is an attempt at systematizing our opinions about it. It succeeds to the extent that (1) it is systematic, and (2) it respects those of our pre-philosophic opinions to which we are firmly attached.” (Lewis, COUNTERFACTUALS, p. 88)

Sunday, February 19, 2006

"The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect
if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good,
nothing but blind, pitiless indifference."

-Richard Dawkins

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Emerson- On Fate
"They who talk much of destiny, their birth-star,
ect., are in a lower dangerous plane, and invite the
evils they fear.
... If you believe in Fate to your harm,
believe in at least for your good."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson,Fate-
The Conduct of Life 1860

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Being on the tightrope is living; everything else is waiting.
--- Karl Wallenda

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Emerson On Evolution:
"If Fate follows and limits Power,
Power attends and antagonizes Fate.
We must respect Fate as natural history,
but there is more than natural history.
For who and what is this criticism that pries
into the matter? Man is not order of nature,
sack and sack, belly and members, link in a chain,
nor any ignominious baggage; but a stupendous
antagonism, a dragging together of the poles of the
Universe. He betrays his relation to what is below
him,-thick skulled, small brained, fishy, quadrumanous,
quadruped ill-disguised, hardly escaped into biped,-
and has paid for the new powers by loss of some of the
old ones. But the lightning which explodes and fashions
planets, maker of planets and suns,is in him."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson,Fate-
The Conduct of Life 1860

Friday, February 10, 2006

At least two-thirds of our miseries spring from human stupidity, human malice and those great motivators and justifiers of malice and stupidity: idealism, dogmatism and proselytizing zeal on behalf of religous or political ideas.
--Aldous Huxley

Thursday, February 09, 2006


"Jesus is quoted as saying that his purpose was to give life more
abundantly, that is exactly what the death of prejudice and negative
stereotypes of minorities, women and homosexuals accomplishes. Mark and
Luke quote Jesus as saying: "If you are not against me you are for me."
Secular humanism is not my enemy. It is my ally in the struggle for
justice. Indeed I see secular humanism as the glow of Christianity that
remains when the interpreting myths of the past have been abandoned. It
is the bloom of the rose that remains long after the rose is severed
from its roots.

I see a bright future of cooperation - I hope you do too."

--John Shelby Spong

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

"We must respect the other fellow's religion, but only in the sense
and to the extent that we respect his theory that his wife is beautiful
and his children smart."

-- H. L. Mencken (1880-1956) American Journalist

Thursday, February 02, 2006

"No more things should be presumed to exist than are absolutely necessary."
- William of Occam

"You must work--- we must all work To make the world worthy of its children."

-- Pablo Casals

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

i knew that i was dying.
something in me said, go ahead, die, sleep, become
them, accept.
then something else in me said, no, save the tiniest
it needn't be much, just a spark.
a spark can set a whole forest on
just a spark.
save it.
--Charles Bukowski

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