And it happened again. The sun is not even fully awake yet and all the dreadful words crash down upon my sleepy head. As I sit there and wonder, “Why, how and what”, I know that I already know the answer to my questions.
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 a 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.
It is not light that we need, but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder. We need the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake to grow.
You cannot change anything in your life with intention alone, which can become a watered-down, occasional hope that you’ll get to tomorrow. Intention without action is useless.
The self is not something ready-made, but something in continuous formation through choice of action.
~ John Dewey
Those who belong to the orthodox faiths claim that the authority of their faith rests on revelation, and that revelation is given in the pages of books and accounts of miracles and wonders whose nature is supernatural. But those of us who have long discarded the belief in the supernatural still are in the presence of revelations which are the foundation of faith. We too have our revealed religion. We have looked upon the face of men and women that can be to us the symbols of that which is holy. We have heard words of sacred wisdom and truth spoken in the human voice. Out of the universe there have come to us these experience which, when accepted, give to us revelations, not of supernatural religion, but of a natural and inevitable faith in the spiritual powers that animate and dwell in the center of [a person’s] being.
~ John Lovejoy Elliott
Have a good day!