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“An individual has not started living fully until they can rise above the narrow confines of individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of humanity.... Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or the darkness of destructive selfishness. This is the judgment. Life's most persistent and urgent question is What are you doing for others?”
“...all life is interrelated. We are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied to a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. We are made to live together because of the interrelated structure of reality.”
“Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal.”
“We must learn to live together as brothers or we are going to perish together as fools.”
“If it falls your lot to be a street sweeper, sweep streets like Raphael painted pictures; sweep streets like Michelangelo carved marble; sweep streets like Beethoven composed music; sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry; sweep streets so well that all the host of heaven and earth will have to pause and say: Here lived a great street sweeper, who swept his job well.”
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that."
Martin Luther King Jr. (1929-1968)
“Peace will not come out of a clash of arms but out of justice lived and done by unarmed nations in the face of odds.”
“It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err.”
“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”
“However much I may sympathise with and admire worthy motives, I am an uncompromising opponent of violent methods even to serve the noblest of causes.”
“Constant development is the law of life, and a man who always tries to maintain his dogmas in order to appear consistent drives himself into a false position.”
“Manliness consists not in bluff, bravado or lordliness. It consists in daring to do the right and facing consequences whether it is in matters social, political or other. It consists in deeds, not in words.”
Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948)
“...instead of giving a rifle to somebody, build a school; instead of giving a rifle, build a community with adequate services. Instead of giving a rifle, develop an educational system that is not about conflict and violence, but one that promotes respect for values, for life, and respect for one's elders. This requires a huge investment. Yet if we can invest in a different vision of peaceful coexistence, I think we can change the world, because every problem has a non-violent answer.”
Rigoberta Menchú (1959- )
"The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed."
"It is better to die for an idea that will live, than to live for an idea that will die."
"Tradition has it that whenever a group of people has tasted the lovely fruits of wealth, security and prestige, it begins to find it more comfortable to believe in the obvious lie and accept that it alone is entitled to privilege"
Steve Biko (1946-1977)
"Consider, for example, the case of war. War is enormously discreditable to those who order it to be waged and even to those who merely tolerate its existence. Furthermore, to developed sensibilities the facts of war are revolting and horrifying. (…) The most shocking fact about war is that its victims and its instruments are individual human beings, and that these individual human beings are condemned by the monstrous conventions of politics to murder or be murdered in quarrels not their own, to inflict upon the innocent, and innocent themselves of any crime against their enemies, to suffer cruelties of every kind. (…) What is absurd and monstrous about war is that men who have no personal quarrel should be trained to murder one another in cold blood. "
"Wars cause suffering, put a premium on fraud and cruelty, infect whole societies with anger, fear & pride. They are crusades that make the world safe for spiritual darkness."
Aldous Huxley (1894-1963)
"No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love (...)"
"Like slavery and apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings (...) Poverty and obscene inequality are the terrible scourges of our times"
Nelson Mandela (1918-2013)
"I have found the missing link between the higher ape and civilized man: It is we.”
Konrad Lorenz (1903-1989)
"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.”
"Life isn't worth living, unless it is lived for someone else."
Albert Einstein (1879-1955)
Note: I don’t believe in the Bible as The Holy Book or that Jesus was The Son of God. I don’t really believe in God per se. However, I deeply admire Jesus as a great historical figure, another incredible human being that rose far above the average, changing the world forever through example and words of wisdom.
"Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree rotten and its fruit rotten, because a tree is known by its fruit.”
"Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you."
"And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?."
"Pray for those who persecute you! In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike. If you love only those who love you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else?"
“You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them. But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Jesus of Nazareth
"This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.”
“Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can't help them, at least don't hurt them.”
"Open your arms to change, but don't let go of your values."
“It is the enemy who can truly teach us to practice the virtues of compassion and tolerance.”
"There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done. One is called Yesterday and the other is called Tomorrow. Today is the right day to Love, Believe, Do and mostly Live."
"To be aware of a single shortcoming within oneself is more useful than to be aware of a thousand in somebody else."
Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama (1935 - )
"Although no one can go back and create a new start, anyone can start now and create a new ending.”
“To plan someone else's grief is to dig our own abyss with our own hands.”
"Your good deeds somewhere are your advocates everywhere."
“Leave some sign of happiness, wherever you go.”
“If you have to love, love today. If you have to smile, smile today. If you have to cry, cry today. As the important thing is to live today. Yesterday is gone, and tomorrow may never come.”
“Do not complain about the shadows, create light.”
Chico Xavier (1910-2002)
“Live for yourself and you will live in vain;
Live for others, and you will live again.”
“The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively.”
"Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet."
"Don't gain the world & lose your soul, wisdom is better than silver or gold."
Bob Marley (1945-1981)
“Every man is guilty of all the good he did not do.”
“It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.”
“What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly — that is the first law of nature.”
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."
"No society that feeds its children on tales of successful violence can expect them not to believe that violence in the end is rewarded"
Margaret Mead (1901-1978)
"Our tools are better than we are, and grow better faster than we do. They suffice to crack the atom, to command the tides, but they do not suffice for the oldest task in human history, to live on a piece of land without spoiling it."
Aldo Leopold (1887-1948)
"Unless we think of others and do something for them, we miss one of the greatest sources of happiness"
Ray Lyman Wilbur (1875-1949)
"Tis True my form is something odd,
But blaming me is blaming God;
Could I create myself anew
I would not fail in pleasing you.
If I could reach from pole to pole,
Or grasp the ocean with a span,
I would be measured by the soul;
The mind's the standard of the man"
Joseph Merrick (1862-1890)
"The voyage of true discovery lies not in seeking new landscapes, but in seeing with new eyes"
Marcel Proust (1871-1922)
"While you are wasting your time on your enemies
Engulfed in a fever of spite
Beyond your tunnel vision
Reality fades like shadows into the night"
Pink Floyd (1965-1994)
"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."
"Don't give up! I believe in you all.
A person's a person, no matter how small!
And you very small persons will not have to die
If you make yourselves heard! So come on, now, and TRY!"
"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
Nothing is going to get better. It's not."
Theodor 'Dr. Seuss' Geisel (1904-1991)
"Never forget that you are one of a kind. Never forget that if there weren't any need for you in all your uniqueness to be on this earth, you wouldn't be here in the first place. And never forget, no matter how overwhelming life's challenges and problems seem to be, that one person can make a difference in the world. In fact, it is always because of one person that all the changes that matter in the world come about. So be that one person."
Richard Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983)
"I've learned that people will forget what you said,
People will forget what you did,
But people will never forget how you made them feel."
Maya Angelou (1928-2014)
"The degree of civilization in a society can be judged
by entering its prisons."
Fyodor M. Dostoevsky (1821-1881)
"It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves."
Edmund P. Hillary (1919-2008)
"Only if we understand can we care
Only if we care will we help
Only if we help shall all be saved."
"Change happens by listening and then starting a dialogue with the people who are doing something you don't believe is right."
Jane Goodall (1934 - )
"What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you."
"The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."
"It is not length of life, but depth of life."
"To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment."
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
"Believe, when you are most unhappy, that there is something for you to do in the world. So long as you can sweeten another's pain, life is not in vain."
"When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us."
Helen Keller (1880-1968)
"The tragedy of life is what dies inside a man while he lives."
"Until he extends his circle of compassion to include all living things, man will not himself find peace."
"The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others."
"Do something wonderful, people may imitate it."
"A man is ethical only when life, as such, is sacred to him, that of plants and animals as well as that of his fellowman, and when he devotes himself helpfully to all life that is in need of help."
"Constant kindness can accomplish much. As the sun makes ice melt, kindness causes misunderstanding, mistrust, and hostility to evaporate."
"Example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing."
"Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever."
Lance Armstrong (1971 - )
"Too often, we honour swagger and bluster and the wielders of force. Too often we excuse those who are willing to build their own lives from the shattered dreams of other human beings. But this much is clear, violence breeds violence, repression breeds retaliation."
"Few men are willing to brave the disapproval of their fellows, the censure of their colleagues, the wrath of society. Moral courage is a rarer commodity than bravery in battle or great intelligence. Yet it is the one essential, vital, quality for those who seek to change a world which yields most painfully to change."
"Our lives on this planet are too short, the work to be done is too great. But we can perhaps remember, that those who live with us are our brothers, that they share with us the same short moment of life, that they seek as do we, nothing but the chance to live out their lives in purpose and in happiness. Surely this bond of common fate, this bond of common roles can begin to teach us something, that we can begin to work a little harder, to become in our hearts brothers and countrymen once again."
Robert F Kennedy (1925-1968)
"You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain't about how hard you hit. It's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. (...) Now if you know what you're worth then go out and get what you're worth. But you gotta be willing to take the hits, and not pointing fingers saying you ain't where you wanna be because of him, or her, or anybody!"
"We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience."
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (1881-1955)
"All men make mistakes, but a good man yields when he knows his course is wrong and repairs the evil. The only crime is pride!”
Sophocles (496-406 BC)
"What we think, or what we know, or what we believe, is in the end, of little consequence. The only thing of consequence is what we do.”
John Ruskin (1819-1900)
"Thursday, 7 May 1992
"I was almost positive the war would stop, but today (...) a shell fell on the park in front of my house, the park where I used to play and sit with my girlfriends. A lot of people were hurt. Dado, Jaca and her mother have come home from the hospital, Selma lost a kidney but I don't know how she is, because she's still in the hospital. AND NINA IS DEAD. A piece of shrapnel lodged in her brain and she died. She was such a sweet, nice, little girl. We went to kindergarten together, and we used to play together in the park. It is possible I'll never see Nina again? Nina, an innocent eleven-year-old little girl-the victim of a stupid war. I feel sad. I cry and wonder why? She didn't do anything. A disgusting war has destroyed a young child's life. Nina, I'll always remember you as a wonderful little girl (...) "
Zlata Filipovic (1980 - )
"A man is born gentle and weak.
At his death he is hard and stiff.
Green plants are tender and filled with sap.
At their death they are withered and dry. (...)
A tree that is unbending is easily broken.
The hard and strong will fall.
The soft and weak will overcome."
Lao Tzu (c.400-600 BC)
"A person's true wealth is the good he or she does in the world"
"We talk so much about leaving a better planet to our kids, that we forget to leave better kids to our planet."
"Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness"
"You have not lived until you have done something for someone who can never repay you"
John Bunyan (1628-1688)