Thursday, January 27, 2011

"Three Farmers on Their Way to a Dance" by Richard Powers

Paperback edition.
  • "We must be able to endure seeing the truth, but above all we should pass it on to our fellow men and to posterity whether it be favorable or unfavorable to us."
  • "a man with moral cause stands outside the law"
  • "foolishness went over better in public than gravity"
  • "Technology could feed dreams of progress or kill dreams of nostalgia."
  • "He embodies the unsolvable paradox at the heart of modern man."
  • "When we don't know what we are after, we risk passing it over in the dark."

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Essays of Arthur Schopenhauer: The Wisdom of Life

Download here or here.
  • "a man is in himself, what accompanies him when he is alone, what no one can give or take away"
  • "The only thing that stands in our power to achieve, is to make the most advantageous use possible of the personal qualities we possess"
  • "Ordinary people think merely how they shall spend their time; a man of any talent tries to use it."
  • "the same external events or circumstances affect no two people alike; even with perfectly similar surroundings every one lives in a world of his own"
  •  "The world in which a man lives shapes itself chiefly by the way in which he looks at it, and so it proves different to different men; to one it is barren, dull, and superficial; to another rich, interesting, and full of meaning."
  • "every man is pent up within the limits of his own consciousness"
  • "the highest, most varied and lasting pleasures are those of the mind"

Sunday, January 23, 2011

"Soul Searching: Why Psychotherapy Must Promote Moral Responsibility" by William Doherty

Kindle edition.
  • "pushing me to be  more courageous at times when I was waffling"
  • "psychotherapy in America is facing a crisis of public confidence"
  • "the crisis is over psychotherapy's ability to  speak to the profound social and moral problems of our day"
  • "Are  therapists making these problems worse by justifying the contemporary   flight from personal responsibility, moral accountability,  and participatory community?"
  • "Two of the most prominent philosophers in the world,  Alasdair Maclntyre and Jurgen Habermas, have each raised concerns   about the impact of the "therapeutic culture" on contemporary   mores and morality. Both implicate psychotherapy in the  decline of family and community in the Western world."
  • "moral lobotomy"
  • "This book argues that therapists since the time of Freud have overemphasized individual self-interest"

"Cat's Cradle" by Kurt Vonnegut

Kindle edition and paperback.
  • "People have to talk about something just to keep their voice boxes in working order, so they'll have good voice boxes in case there's ever anything really meaningful to say."
  • "The brainless serenity of charwomen and janitors working late at night came over us. In a messy world we were at least making our little corner clean."
  • "Americans are forever searching for love in forms it never takes, in places it can never be."
  • "You're looking at the world's champion mistakemaker"
  • "All the true things I am about to tell you are shameless lies."
  • "Anyone unable to understand how a useful religion can be found on lies, will not understant this book either."

The Fruits of the Earth by Andre Gide

Book I
  • "Let your waiting be not even longing, but simply a welcoming. Welcome everything that comes to you, but do not long for anything else. Long only for what you have. ... Let your longing be for love, and your possession of a lover's."
  • "Let the importance lie in your look, not in the thing you look at."
  • "Look upon the evening as the death of the day; and upon the morning as the birth of all things. Let every moment renew your vision. The wise man is he who constantly wonders afresh."

Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Art of War by Sun Tzu

Download here or here.
  • "He who relies solely on warlike measures shall be exterminated; he who relies solely on peaceful measures shall perish."
  • "Military weapons are the means used by the Sage to punish violence and cruelty, to give peace to troublous times, to remove difficulties and dangers, and to succor those who are in peril."
  • "Every animal with blood in its veins and horns on its head will fight when it is attacked."
  • "If I fight, I conquer."
  • "All warfare is based on deception."
  • "when able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must seem inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near."

"Petty Troubles of Married Life" by Honoré de Balzac

Download here.
  • "Then what? . . . . . Why, then come a crowd of petty unforeseen troubles, like the following: . . ."
  • "General Rule.--No man has ever yet discovered the way to give friendly advice to any woman, not even to his own wife."
  • "But as to knowing women as well as I know them, it will not be knowing them much; they don't know themselves!"
  • "Axiom.--A husband should always know what is the matter with his wife, for she always knows what is not."
  • "Axiom.--Inasmuch as women are always willing and able to explain their strong points, they leave us to guess at their weak ones."
  •  "You imagine you have married a creature endowed with reason: you are woefully mistaken, my friend."

"The Canterville Ghost" by Oscar Wilde

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  • "Miss Virginia E. Otis was a little girl of fifteen, lithe and lovely as a fawn, and with a fine freedom in her large blue eyes."
  • "It was a lovely July evening, and the air was delicate with the scent of the pinewoods."
  • "What a monstrous climate!" said the American Minister, calmly, as he lit a long cheroot. "I guess the old country is so overpopulated that they have not enough decent weather for everybody."
  • "He was sitting by the window, watching the ruined gold of the yellowing trees fly through the air, and the red leaves dancing madly down the long avenue."

"A Woman of No Importance" by Oscar Wilde

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  • "One should sympathise with the joy, the beauty, the colour of life."
  • "Nothing should be out of the reach of hope. Life is a hope."
  •  "I think the stupid people talk a great deal."
  • "More marriages are ruined nowadays by the common sense of the husband than by anything else. How can a woman be expected to be happy with a man who insists on treating her as if she were a perfectly rational being?"
  • "Oh, women have become so highly educated, Jane, that nothing should surprise us nowadays, except happy marriages. They apparently are getting remarkably rare."

"The Importance of Being Earnest" by Oscar Wilde

Download here or here.
  •  "Oh! it is absurd to have a hard and fast rule about what one should read and what one shouldn't. More than half of modern culture depends on what one shouldn't read."
  • "The truth is rarely pure and never simple. Modern life would be very tedious if it were either, and modern literature a complete impossibility!"
  • "I really don't see anything romantic in proposing. It is very romantic to be in love. But there is nothing romantic about a definite proposal."
  • "My dear fellow, the way you flirt with Gwendolen is perfectly disgraceful. It is almost as bad as the way Gwendolen flirts with you."

"On the Decay of the Art of Lying" by Mark Twain

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  • "The Lie, as a Virtue, A Principle, is eternal; the Lie, as a recreation, a solace, a refuge in time of need, the fourth Grace, the tenth Muse, man's best and surest friend, is immortal, and cannot perish from the earth while this club remains. My complaint simply concerns the decay of the art of lying."
  • "No fact is more firmly established than that lying is a necessity of our circumstances--the deduction that it is then a Virtue goes without saying. No virtue can reach its highest usefulness without careful and diligent cultivation--therefore, it goes without saying that this one ought to be taught in the public schools--even in the newspapers. What chance has the ignorant uncultivated liar against the educated expert?"
  • "None of us could live with an habitual truth-teller; but thank goodness none of us has to."

"Pygmalion" by Bernard Shaw

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  • "The great secret, Eliza, is not having bad manners or good manners or any other particular sort of manners, but having the same manner for all human souls"
  • "Never lose a chance: it doesn't come every day."
  • "What is life but a series of inspired follies?"
  • "the difference between a lady and a flower girl is not how she behaves, but how she's treated"
  • "You see, we're all savages, more or less. We're supposed to be civilized and cultured—to know all about poetry and philosophy and art and science, and so on; but how many of us know even the meanings of these names?"

"This Side Of Paradise" by Scott Fitzgerald

 Download here or here.

  •           "Here was a new generation, shouting the old cries, learning the old creeds, through a reverie of long days and nights; destined finally to go out into that dirty gray turmoil to follow love and pride; a new generation dedicated more than the last to the fear of poverty and the worship of success; grown up to find all Gods dead, all wars fought, all faiths in man shaken. . . ."
  •  "School ruined his French and gave him a distaste for standard authors."
  • "It was always the becoming he dreamed of, never the being."
  • "he was a slave to his own moods"
  •           "your heart - you've probably been neglecting your heart - and you don't know"