‘The fact is that the average man’s love of liberty is nine-tenths imaginary, exactly like his love of sense, justice and truth. He is not actually happy when free; he is uncomfortable, a bit alarmed, and intolerably lonely. Liberty is not a thing for the great masses of men. It is the exclusive possession of a small and disreputable minority, like knowledge, courage and honor. It takes a special sort of man to understand and enjoy liberty — and he is usually an outlaw in democratic societies.’
American journalist, satirist, cultural critic and scholar of American English
‘Imperfections are important just as mistakes are. You only get to be good by learning from mistakes and you get to be real by being imperfect.’
‘You had better respect the desert because the desert leaves it up to you. It’s not going to help. It’s going to leave you totally alon to see if you can find the strength within yourself to survive. There are no distractions. You can’t outfox the desert. You’ll die trying.’
American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor
Love is not simply giving; it is judicious giving and judicious withholding as well. It is judicious praising and judicious criticizing. It is judicious arguing, struggling, confronting, urging, pushing and pulling in addition to comforting. It is leadership. The word ‘judicious’ means requiring judgment, and judgment requires more than instinct; it requires thoughtful and often painful decision making.
Morgan Scott Peck
American psychiatrist and best-selling author
Best known for his first book, The Road Less Traveled
There is a time in every man’s education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance; that imitation is suicide; that he must take himself for better, for worse, as his portion; that though the wide universe if full of good, no kernel of nourishing corn can come to him but through his toil bestowed on that plot of ground which is given to him to till. The power which resides in him is new in nature, and none but he knows what that is which he can do, nor does he know until he has tried.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
American essayist, lecturer, and poet who led the transcendentalist movement of the mid-19th century
‘To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic, it is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness.’
What we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives. If we see only the worst, it destroys our capacity to do something. If we remember those times and places–and there are so many–where people have behaved magnificently, this gives us the energy to act, and at least the possibility of sending this spinning top of world in a different direction.
And if we do act, in however small a way, we don’t have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory.’
American historian, playwright, and social activist
Political science professor at Boston University
Author of more than twenty books including his best-selling and influential A People’s History of the United States
The future has many names. For the weak, it means the unattainable. For the fearful, it means the unknown. For the courageous, it means opportunity.
French poet, novelist, and dramatist of the Romantic movement
Considered to be one of the greatest and best-known French writers of all time