Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, SJ

Above all, trust in the slow work of God. We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay. We should like to skip the intermediate stages. We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new. And yet it is the law of all progress that it is … Read more

Sir Francis Drake

Lord God, when thou givest to thy servants to endeavour any great matter, grant us also to know that it is not the beginning, but the continuing of the same, until it be thoroughly finished, that yieldeth the true glory; through him who, for the finishing of thy work, laid down his life for us, … Read more

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Theresa Bayer

I value a ‘don’t know’ attitude highly, because it’s ambiguous, and fosters a ‘beginner’s mind’ in which there are more possibilities than an ‘expert’s mind.’ Do your art and forget about marketing it. You can always find somebody else to do the marketing, but you can’t find somebody else to do the art. There is … Read more

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Oliver Burkeman

If you’re prone to thinking you should be helping more, that’s probably a sign that you could afford to direct more energy to your idiosyncratic ambitions and enthusiasms. As the Buddhist teacher Susan Piver observes, it’s radical, at least for some of us, to ask how we’d enjoy spending an hour or day of discretionary … Read more

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Doris Lessing

Whatever you’re meant to do, do it now. The conditions are always impossible.

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Nelson Mandela

It is in our hands to make of our world a better one for all. — #MandelaDay

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Julia Cameron

“Do you know how old I will be by the time I learn to really play the piano/act/paint/write a decent play?” Yes . . . the same age you will be if you don’t. So let’s start. — The Artist’s Way

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William Gibson

The future is already here – it’s just not very evenly distributed.

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Arundhati Roy

To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never … Read more

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Colum McCann

Don’t write what you know, write towards what you want to know. A writer is an explorer. She knows she wants to get somewhere, but she doesn’t know if the somewhere even exists yet. It is still to be created. Don’t sit around looking inward. That’s boring. In the end your navel contains only lint. … Read more

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Emily Dickinson

I dwell in Possibility – A fairer House than Prose – More numerous of Windows – Superior – for Doors – Of Chambers as the Cedars – Impregnable of eye – And for an everlasting Roof The Gambrels of the Sky – Of Visitors – the fairest – For Occupation – This – The spreading … Read more

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Ian Adams

I laugh. I had tried to read the river. But the river read me, asking How will you live your mayfly life? — A Wild Swim with Mayflies

Thomas Merton

Paradoxically, I have found peace because I have always been dissatisfied. My moments of depression and despair turn out to be renewals, new beginnings. . . . All life tends to grow like this, in mystery inscaped with paradox and contradiction, yet centered, in its very heart, on the divine mercy . . . and … Read more

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Wendy Cope

No coats today. Buds bulge on chestnut trees, And on the doorstep of a big, old house A young man stands and plays his flute. I watch the silver notes fly up And circle in the blue sky above the traffic, Travelling where they will. And suddenly this paving-stone Midway between my front door and … Read more

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George Bernard Shaw

This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that … Read more

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June Jordan

we are the ones we have been waiting for — Poem for South African Women

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Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds. I come into the … Read more

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Emily Dickinson

“Hope” is the thing with feathers – That perches in the soul – And sings the tune without the words – And never stops – at all – And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard – And sore must be the storm – That could abash the little Bird That kept so many … Read more

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Richard Skinner

Meister Eckhart brings to God A stone How shall I speak of you? It asks By being a stone Says God — Echoes of Eckhart

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Nayyirah Waheed

in all the falling, flawing, failing. there is the grace of learning. of shedding an old life. for a new. let a new life happen to you.

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Franz Kafka

You need not do anything. Remain sitting at your table and listen. You need not even listen, just wait. You need not even wait, just learn to be quiet, still and solitary. And the world will freely offer itself to you unmasked. It has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet. — … Read more

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Nayyirah Waheed

when creating. be kind to your doubt. hear it out. thank it for its concern. and reassure it that you are an artist. and risk is essential. — when creating

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Walter Wink

Hope imagines the future and then acts as if that future is irresistible.

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Marianne Williamson

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of … Read more

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Meister Eckhart

Wisdom consists in doing the next thing you have to do, doing it with your whole heart, and finding delight in doing it.

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Mona Siddiqui

If you are not optimistic about change, why be involved in the first place? — Interview in the Church Times

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William Blake

To see a World in a Grain of Sand And a Heaven in a Wild Flower Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand And Eternity in an hour — Auguries of Innocence

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Douglas Carlton Abrams

The three factors that seem to have the greatest influence on increasing our happiness are our ability to reframe our situation more positively, our ability to experience gratitude, and our choice to be kind and generous. — from The Book of Joy, with Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu and Douglas

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Idown Koyenikan

There is immense power when a group of people with similar interests gets together to work toward the same goals.

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Vanessa Kisuule

Believe the compliments you are given. Give yourself the benefit of the doubt. Don’t doubt the benefits of being the brightest shade of you on the spectrum. — Take Up Space

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Henry Ford

Whether you think that you can, or that you can’t, you are usually right. Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently. Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal. Don’t find fault, find a remedy. Thinking is the hardest work there is, which … Read more

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Kathryn Schulz

And to me, if you really want to rediscover wonder, you need to step outside of that tiny, terrified space of rightness and look around at each other and look out at the vastness and complexity and mystery of the universe and be able to say, ‘Wow, I don’t know. Maybe I’m wrong.’ — On … Read more

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Søren Kierkegaard

In prosperity, may you grant perseverance to will one thing Amid distraction, collectedness to will one thing In suffering, patience to will one thing. — Purity of Heart Is to Will One Thing

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Kathryn Schulz

Here’s the thing, if we have goals and dreams, and we want to do our best, and if we love people and we don’t want to hurt them or lose them, we should feel pain when things go wrong. The point isn’t to live without any regrets. The point is to not hate ourselves for … Read more

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Robin Houghton

Start a new project, set a new goal or find a way to inspire others, on your own terms. Don’t just use your talent, give it away at every opportunity. To share it is to feed it. — On Literary Envy

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Helen Suzman

I did what I could, where I was, with what I had. — Paraphrasing Theodore Roosevelt

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Meister Eckhart

An artist is not a special kind of person, rather every person is a special kind of artist.

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David Wong

Happiness takes effort. Also, courage. It’s incredibly comforting to know that as long as you don’t create anything in your life, then nobody can attack the thing you created.

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Jacqueline Novogratz

Just start… Don’t wait for perfection. Just start and let the work teach you. — The Blue Sweater

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George Herbert

Do not wait; the time will never be ‘just right.’ Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.

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Anne Lamott

“Never compare someone else’s outside with your inside.” — In conversation at Greenbelt 2014

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Parker J Palmer

I am a novice in every new moment of the day, each of which presents possibilities unknown and untried. Why not embrace that fact and see what happens? … [W]e all live at the intersection of our small worlds and the big one around us. If we want to serve others, we must attend to … Read more

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Mary Oliver

I worried a lot. Will the garden grow, will the rivers flow in the right direction, will the earth turn as it was taught, and if not how shall I correct it? Was I right, was I wrong, will I be forgiven, can I do better? Will I ever be able to sing, even the … Read more

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St Benedict

Begin everything you attempt with the earnest prayer that it will be brought to perfection. — Prologue to the Rule, Mucknell Abbey

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John O’Donohue

Become inclined to watch the way of rain When it falls slow and free. Imitate the habit of twilight, Taking time to open the well of color That fostered the brightness of day. Draw alongside the silence of stone Until its calmness can claim you. Be excessively gentle with yourself. — Excerpt from A Blessing for … Read more

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Desmond Tutu

If governments knew how subversive is contemplative prayer, they would ban it. — Thank you to Maggie Ross

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Emery Allen

There’s so much more to life than finding someone who will want you, or being sad over someone who doesn’t. There’s a lot of wonderful time to be spent discovering yourself without hoping someone will fall in love with you along the way, and it doesn’t need to be painful or empty. You need to … Read more

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Micah 6.8

And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. — NRSV

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Ted Hughes

“The progress of any writer is marked by those moments when she manages to outwit her own inner police system which tells her what is permissible, what is possible, what is ‘her’.” — Foreword by Ted Hughes to Sandy Brownjohn “What Rhymes With ‘Secret’?”, adapted

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Theodore Roosevelt

It is not the critic who counts; not the woman who points out how the strong woman stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the woman who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who … Read more

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Thomas Merton

My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing … Read more

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John O’Donohue

May you experience each day as a sacred gift woven around the heart of wonder. — Eternal Echoes

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Mary Oliver

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? — The Summer Day

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