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Angie #936085 03/18/22 08:59 AM
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I wish I could show you when you are lonely or in darkness the astonishing light of your own being.

Hafiz

This beautifully hopeful line begins a short poem by 14th-century Persian poet and mystic Hafiz, who is known for his lyrical musings on theology and philosophy. The poem reflects on love, loneliness, and belonging in the greater context of time and space. Sometimes in our most difficult and darkest moments, we need to be reminded of the power of our own value and beauty. As Hafiz writes, "Look what happens with a love like that / It lights the whole sky."

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Angie #936091 03/20/22 12:37 PM
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Find the thing you do well and do it again and again for the rest of your life.

Jóhann Jóhannsson

It took time for Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson to find his place in the music world. Beginning his musical studies at age 11, he abandoned formal training as a teenager and instead spent more than a decade experimenting with different compositions and genres. Once he struck the unique mix of acoustic and electronic sounds that now defines his work, Jóhannsson began releasing his own albums. He went on to compose numerous orchestral pieces and film scores, including "The Theory of Everything" (2014), "Arrival" (2016), and "Last and First Men" (2020). His devotion to mastering his art encourages us not to give up on finding the spark in our lives — the thing that drives us and makes us feel most alive.

Angie #936099 03/21/22 11:41 AM
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Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.

William Shakespeare

From Hamlet to Romeo, many of Shakespeare’s characters experience moments of self-doubt. In the Bard’s comedy “Measure for Measure,” mild Isabella worries that she can’t prevent her brother’s execution, but with this line, his friend Lucio persuades her to take the chance. For the rest of us, it stands as a warning not to let fear keep us from trying: Taking a calculated risk could bring gifts we can’t imagine.

Angie #936104 03/22/22 11:31 AM
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Perhaps one did not want to be loved so much as to be understood.

George Orwell

George Orwell’s dystopian classic “1984” centers around the dangers of nationalism, censorship, and totalitarianism. But the author also deftly dissects what it means to be human. In a moment of clarity, the novel’s protagonist, Winston Smith, recognizes that all people, even his enemies, have an intrinsic desire for connection. With this line, he observes that even love itself can feel lacking without true understanding to give it depth.

Angie #936110 03/23/22 10:06 AM
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We must believe that we are gifted for something.

Marie Curie

Polish physicist Marie Curie made history in 1903 as the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, in physics, and then again in 1911 as the only woman to ever (thus far) win a second Nobel, in chemistry. She earned these honors for her groundbreaking work in discovering two new elements: radium and polonium. Though she received much acclaim for her research, Curie also suffered many hardships in her life, including the death of her beloved husband and research partner, Pierre Curie, as well as long-term physical ailments from her work with radioactive materials. Through it all, Curie remained hopeful and optimistic. In her 1937 biography, she wrote, “Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something, and that this thing, at whatever cost, must be attained.”

Angie #936117 03/24/22 03:14 PM
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Don’t try to figure out what other people want to hear from you; figure out what you have to say.

Barbara Kingsolver

Novelist and poet Barbara Kingsolver has published 16 books over the course of her career, but the last months of the 20th century marked a turning point. Not only did she publish “The Poisonwood Bible” in 1998, a novel that sold more than 4 million copies, but the following year she founded what’s now called the PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction, North America’s largest monetary award for an unpublished work of fiction. In a 2015 interview, Kingsolver emphasized her passion for helping individuals find their voices. Through listening and processing what’s going on around us — and in other communities — we'll encounter and come up with new ideas, allowing us to advance the conversation.

Angie #936139 03/27/22 06:20 PM
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You can't do your job and be afraid.

Meryl Streep

Armed with Vassar College and Yale University drama degrees, 26-year-old Meryl Streep was eager to book her first film role. Federico De Laurentiis — son of the legendary movie producer Dino De Laurentiis — saw the actress onstage and arranged a 1975 audition for her to play the female lead in his father’s “King Kong” remake. When Streep entered the elder De Laurentiis’ office, he turned to Federico and, in Italian, remarked, “Che brutta,” which roughly translates to, “What an ugly woman.” Instead of slinking away, an emboldened Streep acknowledged his disapproval in her own perfect Italian. While she didn’t get the part, other producers embraced her talents, and within five years she had won an Academy Award, for “Kramer vs. Kramer.” Today, Streep has three Oscar wins and 21 nominations, the most of any performer ever. Here, the acclaimed actress advocates for making decisions based on your insight and instincts, and not letting fear derail the work.

Angie #936142 03/28/22 04:19 PM
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Anyone can be passionate, but it takes real lovers to be silly.

Rose Franken

Rose Franken was a Jewish American novelist and playwright celebrated for her work in the first half of the 20th century. On the whole, Franken’s writing was characterized by a playful sense of humor and unexpected plot twists. Her famous “Claudia” stories centered around a naive 18-year-old adjusting to married life. Franken herself outlived two husbands in her 92 years of life, giving an air of authority to her proclamation that only real lovers can be silly. To let loose with a loved one requires a vulnerability that passion doesn’t necessarily include. To see someone as they are, even as they act a fool, and to love them even more for it, is something special indeed.

Angie #936148 03/29/22 04:57 PM
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Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear — not absence of fear.

Mark Twain

Known as the father of American literature, Mark Twain is famous for his classic novels “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” (1876) and “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” (1884). But it was in his 1894 novel “Pudd’nhead Wilson” that Twain wrote these memorable words on the subject of courage. Though courage and fear are often viewed as opposite experiences, they are actually intrinsically related: Fear is a common and natural feeling, but bravery comes from being able to overcome it.

Angie #936152 03/30/22 02:43 PM
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Music is one of the healthiest forms of transcendence and magic.

Moby

After more than three decades in the music industry, the multitalented recording artist Moby shared this insight about his craft in an interview in 2016. The musician struggled with substance abuse early in his career, before exploring healthier lifestyles and avenues of spiritual satisfaction — including music itself. “Music,” he reflected, “can operate as such a powerful and profound healing modality even though technically it has no material substance. But somehow it can make you dance, can make you cry, can make you sing, can make you drive across a country, can make you do all sorts of things.”

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