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Angie #938672 11/04/23 08:06 PM
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Science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality.

Carl Sagan

American astronomer Carl Sagan was known and much beloved for his research on extraterrestrial life and the cosmos, which he shared with the public in his earnest, enthusiastic manner on his 1980 TV show “Cosmos,” the most widely watched series in the history of American public television. In his book "The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark," Sagan noted that even the simplest scientific concept, fully grasped, can elicit a spiritual experience. “The very act of understanding is a celebration of joining, merging, even if on a modest scale, with the magnificence of the cosmos,” he wrote. “When we recognize our place in an immensity of light-years and in the passage of ages, when we grasp the intricacy, beauty, and subtlety of life, then that soaring feeling, that sense of elation and humility combined, is surely spiritual.”

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Angie #938673 11/05/23 08:24 PM
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Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.

William Shakespeare

In the opening scene of Shakespeare’s comedy “All’s Well That Ends Well,” a mother shares this quote with her son. It's excellent advice for any child (or anyone) getting ready to face the world on their own. Shakespeare tells us that every single person, regardless of background, is worthy of love. But he also cautions to be wise about who we put our trust in, because trust is something to be earned. While we may not be able to control the actions of others, we can control how we treat people. If there's one rule to live by, it's to always show kindness and never do anything to hurt others.

Angie #938684 11/09/23 04:51 PM
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There is no remedy for love but to love more.

Henry David Thoreau

A leading transcendentalist, early naturalist, and lifelong abolitionist, Henry David Thoreau started keeping a personal journal when he was 20 at the suggestion of another quintessentially American writer-philosopher, Ralph Waldo Emerson. Two years later, having made a habit of journaling, Thoreau jotted down this note. What inspired him to record the thought, we cannot know, but in retrospect the line might be read as a window into his life’s work. A core tenet of transcendentalism is a conviction in the inherent goodness of people and nature. Likewise, a central premise of civil disobedience in the interest of equal rights is that all people are created equal. Thoreau’s writing on the latter subject would go on to influence many other great thinker-activists working toward equality, from Mahatma Gandhi to Martin Luther King, Jr.

Angie #938686 11/10/23 03:37 PM
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We can know only that we know nothing. And that is the highest degree of human wisdom.

Leo Tolstoy

Leo Tolstoy is widely regarded as one of the greatest authors of all time. Among his most notable works are “War and Peace,” “Anna Karenina,” and “The Death of Ivan Ilyich” — all timeless masterpieces of realist literature. His writing has influenced everyone from Virginia Woolf to Martin Luther King Jr.: Woolf considered him a writer of unrivaled ability who could reveal “the most carefully hidden secrets of human nature,” while King was influenced by Tolstoy’s philosophy of nonviolence. Tolstoy himself was inspired by many great writers who had come before him, and he read widely in his relentless search for life’s meaning. The above quote, which expresses the notion that recognizing the limits of our knowledge is the closest we can get to true wisdom, is spoken by Pierre Bezukhov, the central protagonist of “War and Peace” — a character Tolstoy largely based on himself.

Angie #938689 11/11/23 11:50 AM
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Everything has its wonders, even darkness and silence.

Helen Keller

Helen Keller was left blind and deaf after an illness at a very young age, yet she overcame her challenges and became a renowned author and advocate for people with disabilities. Her perspective on life and her ability to find meaning and contentment in the face of adversity informed her work — and are a major part of her legacy. For her, darkness and silence represented the limits of her sensory experience, but she was able to explore the wonders of connection, communication, and understanding through other senses. Keller’s words are an enduring reminder that every experience, no matter how challenging, comes with its own beauty and opportunities.

Angie #938696 11/13/23 08:15 PM
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The older I get, the more I want to be authentically myself.

Julianne Moore

Best known for her roles in films such as "Still Alice" and "Boogie Nights," Academy Award-winning actress Julianne Moore has also authored bestselling children’s books about self-acceptance. The eight installments of her "Freckleface Strawberry" series were inspired by her girlhood as a conspicuous redhead. Like many young people, Freckleface Strawberry gets her ideas about who she wants to be and what she wants to do from looking outward. Moore wants to help kids learn a lesson she's realized with the passing decades. As she mentions in this quote, growing older brings clarity, and once you grasp what you like about yourself, determining your priorities becomes easier.

Angie #938699 11/14/23 08:11 PM
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We won't be distracted by comparison if we're captivated with purpose.

Bob Goff

Bob Goff is a bestselling author, motivational speaker, founder of the nonprofit human rights organization Love Does, and self-described “recovering lawyer.” This musing on rooting oneself in purpose to minimize comparison comes from his 2019 book “Live in Grace, Walk in Love.” Goff uses this quote to discuss the importance of helping others rather than sizing ourselves up against them. He goes on to write, “Look for the people around you who are suffering in some way, and take one of their worries off their plate in secret … We won’t have time to measure ourselves against one another if we fill our time scheming ways to lift one another up.” Goff believes that focusing on helping those around us not only empowers communities, but also allows us to release ourselves from the toxic societal pressure to view ourselves as inferior or superior to others.

Angie #938703 11/16/23 02:51 PM
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If you’re lucky enough to find a way of life you love, you have to find the courage to live it.

John Irving

Today, John Irving is one of the world’s most popular and respected writers of fiction, known for his colorful and eccentric characters, humorous voice, and imaginative plots. But like many writers, he had his struggles. His first three novels attracted reasonably positive reviews but failed to gain large readerships, and he found himself unable to fulfill his dream of making a living purely from writing fiction. Nonetheless, Irving continued to pursue his passion. His fourth novel, “The World According to Garp,” was a massive hit, selling millions of copies and remaining on bestseller lists for years. “Garp” is one of several Irving novels that have been adapted for film, along with “The Hotel New Hampshire,” “The Cider House Rules,” “A Prayer for Owen Meany,” and “A Widow for One Year.” This quote from “A Prayer for Owen Meany” reminds us that while deciding how we want to live our lives is a great first step, we also have to find the strength within us to make that ideal life a reality.

Angie #938711 11/17/23 09:12 PM
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Hope is the feeling we have that the feeling we have is not permanent.

Mignon McLaughlin

Famous for her clever aphorisms, journalist Mignon McLaughlin summarizes the nature of hope here in a simple but powerful way. When we are going through our darkest days, hope is the little ray of light that reminds us there are brighter times ahead. Hard times are not permanent, and holding on to hope that this, too, shall pass, is what gives us strength to get through them.

Angie #938723 11/21/23 09:14 PM
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Peace in the world is everybody's business, no matter where you live or what you do.

Betty Williams

Before Betty Williams founded the Community of Peace People and became a Nobel Prize-winning activist, she was an office worker from Belfast, Ireland, who was traumatized by the violence of the Northern Ireland conflict. After witnessing three children killed in an incident between British troops and an Irish Republican Army terrorist, Williams devoted herself to promoting interpersonal harmony and religious tolerance throughout an Ireland harshly divided between Protestants and Catholics. She delivered this imploration for world peace in a 2010 interview ahead of a presentation at Western Michigan University. She added, “Community change from the bottom-up makes a real difference.” Williams’ sentiment directly negates the idea that conflict throughout the world is someone else’s problem, not ours. On the contrary, Williams urges us to prioritize world peace as highly as though we’re doing so solely for the benefit of our immediate community.

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