Notorious RBG – Sunday Seven

Ruth Bader Ginsberg (March 15, 1933 – September 18, 2020). The world lost a trailblazer and a true champion this week.

  • I pray that I may be all that (my mother) would have been had she lived in an age when women could aspire and achieve, and daughters are cherished as much as sons.
  • Fight for the things you care about but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.
  • I would advise more listening, less talking.
  • I am optimistic in the long run. A great man once said the true symbol of the United States is not the bald eagle, it’s the pendulum, and when the pendulum swings too far in one direction, it will go back.
  • It helps sometimes to be a little deaf. When a thoughtless and unkind word is spoken best tune out. Reacting in anger or annoyance will not advance one’s ability to persuade.
  • You should speak in your own voice.
  • Real change, enduring change, happens one step at a time.

Kafka – Sunday Seven

We started reading Czech author Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis in English last week and I am still trying to understand what I am supposed to make of this book. On its surface it’s quite simple – if one allows for all suspension of disbelief – a salesman goes to sleep a normal human being and wakes up a bug  and seriously what kind of life did Kafka live to have such a wild imagination. I realize we are dealing with deeper issues like an existential crisis – but still what an imagination. I decided to find interesting quotes by Kafka for this week’s Sunday Seven.

  • A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us.
  • In man’s struggle against the world, bet on the world.
  • Slept, awoke, slept, awoke, miserable life.
  • I usually solve problems by letting them devour me.
Kafka Sculpture in Prague
  • They say ignorance is bliss….they’re wrong.
  • God gives the nuts, but he does not crack them.
  • Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.

And my favorite:

  • How about I sleep a little longer and forget all this nonsense.

Sunday Seven – Mother Teresa

Mother Teresa is considered one of the greatest humanitarians of the 20th Century. She was a nun and a missionary who dedicated her life to helping the orphans in Calcutta (India). She received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1997, and was canonized as Saint Teresa of Calcutta after her death in 1997. On this Mother’s Day Sunday, I want to dedicate my Sunday Seven to her quotes.

  • A life not lived for others is not a life.
  • I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create ripples.
  • Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.
  • If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.
  • It is a kingly act to assist the fallen.
  • Peace begins with a smile.
  • We fear the future because we are wasting today.
  • Do ordinary things with extraordinary love.

For the love of trees – Sunday Seven.

Have you noticed how beautiful and lush trees look at this time of year? I love going for a walk on the trail near my house and walking amongst the trees – a sense of calm washes over me when I am with the trees. I decided to do this week’s Sunday Seven about trees and what they mean to different people.

The true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit. Nelson Henderson.

Trees are poems that the earth writes upon the sky. Khalil Gibran.

Until you dig a hole, you plant a tree, you water it and make it survive, you haven’t done a thing. You are just talking. Wangari Maathai.

When you’re outnumbered by trees, your perspective shifts. Jessica Marie Baumgartner.

What a joy it is to see, trees dancing in the rain! Charmaine J. Forde.

Things that can’t move, learn to see. Louise Glick.

Believe me, for I know, you will find something far greater in the woods than in books. Stones and trees will teach you that which you cannot learn from the masters. Bernard of Clairvaux.

Be like a tree, let the dead leaves drop. Rumi.

(Image – Gustav Klimt, The Park, 1910 or earlier. MOMA)

Sunday Seven

During Christmas break, I visited Amsterdam, and the Anne Frank House.  So much has been written about Anne Frank, that I wouldn’t know what to add.  In one of the display cases, there were Anne’s journals, and a note saying that Anne’s father had told her to write down the beautiful, meaningful sentences or quotes she came across while reading.  That registered with me – I too come across beautiful sentences and quotes, and I think every Sunday I will list a minimum of seven that I have come across during the week. 

So here is my first list of seven.

Discontent is a good thing: discontented people can modify and improve their worlds, leave them better. Leave them different (Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading, and daydreaming).

There are tales that are older than most countries, tales that have long outlasted the cultures and the buildings in which they were first told (Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading, and daydreaming).

I took half a packet of smokes to Geel Piet, who thought all his Christmases had come at once (Bryce Courtenay: The Power of One).

Mankind at its most desperate is often at its best (Bob Geldof).

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world (Anne Frank).

Wie boter op zijn hoofd heft, moet uit de zon blijven (He who has butter on his head should stay out of the sun) (Dutch proverb).

I didn’t always have things, but I had people – I always had people (Ta-Nehisi Coates, Between the World and Me).

No one is useless in this world, who lightens the burdens of another (Charles Dickens).