Thursday, January 31, 2013

To Learn ~ T.H.White

"You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then ~ to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn.”


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Artwork Aubrey Beardsley

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

On Growing Food ~ Henry David Thoreau

" I used to visit and revisit it a dozen times a day, and stand in deep contemplation over my vegetable progeny with a love that nobody could share or conceive of who had never taken part in the process of creation. It was one of the most bewitching sights in the world to observe a hill of beans thrusting aside the soil, or a rose of early peas just peeping forth sufficiently to trace a line of delicate green"

"… I did better still, for I spaded up all the land which I required, about a third of an acre, and I learned from the experience of both years, … that if one would live simply and eat only the crop which he raised, and raise no more than he ate, and not exchange it for an insufficient quantity of more luxurious and expensive things, he would need to cultivate only a few rods of ground, and that it would be cheaper to spade up that than to use oxen to plow it, and to select a fresh spot from time to time than to manure the old, and he could do all his necessary farm work as it were with his left hand at odd hours in the summer"

~ Henry David Thoreau

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Artwork by Winslow Homer

Friday, January 25, 2013

Pretend Nothing ~ Virginia Woolf

“Communication is truth; communication is happiness. To share is our duty; to go down boldly and bring to light those hidden thoughts which are the most diseased; to conceal nothing; to pretend nothing; if we are ignorant to say so; if we love our friends to let them know it.”

― Virginia Woolf

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Your Full Self ~ Ashley Wilcox

"As I try to follow the Spirit in my daily life, it is becoming harder for me to compartmentalize parts of myself.  I no longer feel that my work self is so different from the way I am at home or at meeting.  In a recent conversation with a friend, I defined integrity as knowing who you are and bringing your full self to every situation.  I fall short of this often, but I am trying to be more fully myself and I admire those I see around me who are trying to live with integrity.

When I travel to Friends churches and meetings, sometimes the Religious Society of Friends seems very compartmentalized.  Talks about different kinds of worship can quickly become debates over who the "real Quakers" are.  Some worship in silence, some with singing, some with spoken prayer, and some through listening to a prepared message.  But everywhere I go, I meet Friends who have a living relationship with the Spirit and are waiting to hear the voice of God in worship."

~ Ashley Wilcox

Monday, January 21, 2013

Fill up the Places ~ John Field

"Dear Friends, it is our great encouragement that yet remain, to be faithful to the Lord, diligent in his work and service, zealous for his name, and our respective testimonies for the sake thereof because that blessed Power, Spirit, Life and Wisdom, that raised up, fitted, furnished and endued this, and many more of our ancient, worthy, and honourable brethren, and made them so, blessed be his holy name, is still with us, and as sufficient as ever. The Lord is as willing to fill up the places of them he has taken to himself into the mansions of eternal glory, as he was in tender mercy favourably pleased to furnish them for his work and service, that it may be carried on to his praise and the honour of his worthy name, from age to age, and from one generation to another."

John Field

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Artwork from Femi Ford

Friday, January 18, 2013

Power of Truth ~ John Woolman

"My mind, through the power of Truth, was in a good degree weaned from the desire of outward greatness, and I was learning to be content with real conveniences that were not costly; so that a way of life free from much entanglements appeared best for me, though the income was small... I saw that a humble man with the blessing of the Lord, might live on a little; and that where the heart was set on greatness success in business did not satisfy the craving; but that commonly with an increase of wealth, the desire for wealth increased."

 ~ John Woolman

I was reminded of this quote by a visit to the thought provoking blog ~  Transition Quaker

Artwork from Emily K Armstrong

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Helpful to Each Other ~ George Fox

"Faithful women, who were called to a belief of the Truth, and made partakers of the same precious faith and heirs of the same everlasting Gospel of life and salvation that the men are, might in like manner come into the possession and practice of the Gospel order, and therein be meet-helps unto the men in the restoration, in the service of Truth, in the affairs in the Church, as they are outwardly in civil or temporal things. That so all the family of God, women as well as men, might know, possess, perform and discharge their offices and services in the house of God ; whereby the poor might be better taken care of, the younger instructed, informed, and taught in the way of God ; the loose and disorderly reproved and admonished in the fear of the Lord; the clearness of persons proposing marriage more closely and strictly inquired into in the wisdom of God; and all the members of the spiritual body, the Church, might watch over and be helpful to each other in love."

~ George Fox's diary for 1673

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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Life Which is Open to Experiment ~ Dora Willson

"The teaching of Jesus, as recorded in the first three Gospels, is intensely practical in that it offers a way to life which is open to experiment. But a tragic gap separates the un-religious, pseudo-scientific men and women of today from his message in its incomparable simplicity and clarity. Whenever the teaching is made intelligible, as it was for the hearers of Jesus and as it has been for many all through the ages, its appeal is immediate. For this direct approach we must clear our minds of preconceptions concerning Jesus, avoiding reference to the interpretations of writers about him, to the teachings of other great religious leaders, and to the findings of modern psychology, which in so many instances bear out his deep insights.Concentrating our attention on that which is of primary importance for living, let us try to restate the teaching of Jesus in language as comprehensible to us as it was to the ordinary, half-educated, fear-ridden men to whom he spoke."
(Of course Jesus spoke to men and women HQ)

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Monday, January 14, 2013

Raising Up - Stephen Crisp

"So that your end in coming to these meetings, is not so much to hear what this, and that, and the other friend say; but what you have in yourselves to witness to; which is the divine operations of the power of God in your souls, bringing down something that is to be brought down, and raising up something that is to be raised."

- Stephen Crisp 1691

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Sunday, January 13, 2013

Speak Unpalatable Truth ~ W Ross Chapman

"Faithful are the wounds of a friend. Only a sincere friend can make a wise criticism or correction. Human weakness, blindness, arrogance and self-interest make correction from outside ourselves necessary. Who is going to do that correcting? The current wisdom in some quarters of Quakerism is that we must be non-judgemental. It is expounded as a worthy ideal, but a faithful friend should and will make timely and wise criticism in the best interests of one’s friends. A friend needs to be sincere enough to speak unpalatable truth. A faithful friend is the medicine of life."

W Ross Chapman 

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Friday, January 11, 2013

A Garden Planted ~ Ray Bradbury

“Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you're there.

It doesn't matter what you do, he said, so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that's like you after you take your hands away. The difference between the man who just cuts lawns and a real gardener is in the touching, he said. The lawn-cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime.”

~ Ray Bradbury

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Artwork from Liz Lyons Friedman

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Overwhelming Holiness ~ Rebecca James Hecking

"Every day, every breath, every moment. Sacred. Unique. When this realization dawns on us, we are struck with the overwhelming holiness of it all. We live in this state of grace every day of our lives. Our task is to continually move in the direction of ever-increasing awakening."

~ Rebecca James Hecking

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Artwork by Belinda Del Pesco

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

All are Priceless ~ Pete Dunne

"Most people come onto a day full blown – to a sun already high in the sky, a world already in motion, and the impossible task of catching up. They rarely see the tentative side of morning or appreciate the great struggle between light and darkness played out on a world stage. Some mornings come raging over the horizon, angry and red. Some are so subtle that the transformation of night and day seems like an afterthought. All are different and all are priceless."

~ Pete Dunne

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Artwork by Christine Howes ~ (Well worth a look!)

A Plain and Simple Place

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Little Fallow Corner ~ Henri Frederic Amiel

"Let mystery have its place in you; do not be always turning up your whole soil with the ploughshare of self-examination, but leave a little fallow corner in your heart ready for any seed the winds may bring."

Henri Frederic Amiel

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