People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.
You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat.
truth, like gold, is to be obtained not by its growth, but by washing away from it all that is not gold.
What sunshine is to flowers, smiles are to humanity. These are but trifles, to be sure; but scattered along life's pathway, the good they do is inconceivable.
I like to imagine that the world is one big machine. You know, machines never have any extra parts. They have the exact number and type of parts they need. So I figure if the entire world is a big machine, I have to be here for some reason. And that means you have to be here for some reason, too.
Left to our own devices, we are apt to backslide to our instinctive conceptual ways. This underscores the place of education in a scientifically literate democracy, and even suggests a statement of purpose for it (a surprisingly elusive principle in higher education today). The goal of education is to make up for the shortcomings in our instinctive ways of thinking about the physical and social world. And education is likely to succeed not by trying to implant abstract statements in empty minds but by taking the mental models that are our standard equipment, applying them to new subjects in selective analogies, and assembling them into new and more sophisticated combinations.
To most Christians, the Bible is like a software license. Nobody actually reads it. They just scroll to the bottom and click 'I agree'.
Just as music is noise that makes sense, a painting is colour that makes sense, so a story is life that makes sense.
In my experiences, the common critic of Christianity, when he thinks of Christianity, imagines a sort of elementary, Sunday School blunder of elements: fiery Hell, an angry God, 'try not to sin', 'be good so that you can go to Heaven', absurd miracles, hyper-fundamentalist tales, religious hypocrites, and Jesus telling people not to judge. There is no horse more dead than such. I maintain that understanding Christianity and the Bible is quite like painting a piece of art. Let a toddler paint a puppy; then let an adult who is a long-time painter paint the very same puppy. They are both paintings of the puppy, but one is far more detailed, rational, realistic, and believable than the other. One is distorted and comical; the other is proportional and lively. One can write off Theology if he so pleases, but he might not be very wise in using the toddler's painting when it comes time to identify the real puppy or when trying to confront actual men of the Faith.
Reading poetry is like undressing before a bath. You don't undress out of fear that your clothes will become wet. You undress because you want the water to touch you. You want to completely immerse yourself in the feeling of the water and to emerge anew.
People are often wary of reading or watching anything in the horror genre because in their minds, it's just senseless gore, death and violence. Well, I can tell you from avid experience, that's not what horror is about. The horror genre teaches us that sometimes really bad things happen to really good people, but that hope always prevails in even the darkest of situations. That's a very important lesson, no matter how frightening you think the teacher is, and to be in the top of her class, all you need to do is to go in with an open mind.
Sometimes, this disapproval of how you are managing your pain crosses over to disbelief that you are in as much pain as you say you are. They don’t believe that your pain is a legitimate enough reason to rest or nap or cry or take narcotic medications or not go to work or to go to the doctor. They might think that you are making too big of a deal out of it. They doubt the legitimacy of the pain itself.This kind of stigma is the source of the dreaded accusation that chronic pain is “all in your head.” It’s as if to say that you are making a mountain out of a molehill.
I realized, when I saw the forest burning, how fascinating the firelight is. It's beautiful, and people stare at it, don't they? It destroys things and kills people, but humans love it. Is it because they crave their own destruction, Sam? I want to understand your kind. I am going out into the wider world, and I must learn. But first things first. First, to escape this shell, this egg in which I have gestated, all eyes will be on the fire, all eyes blinded by the smoke, and when I walk out of here, out into your large world with its billions, no one will even see. It's the beauty of light, don't you see, Sam? It reveals, but it also distracts and blinds. It's even better than darkness.
I know, I know: it can be frustrating as hell. But people have an unfortunate habit of assuming they understand the reality just because they understood the analogy. You dumb down brain surgery enough for a preschooler to think he understands it, the little tyke’s liable to grab a microwave scalpel and start cutting when no one’s looking.
They have been having sex for eighteen months now (he realizes he has to make himself stop counting, as if his sexual life is a prison term, and he is working toward its completion).
At present, the successful office-seeker is a good deal like the center of the earth; he weighs nothing himself, but draws everything else to him. There are so many societies, so many churches, so many isms, that it is almost impossible for an independent man to succeed in a political career. Candidates are forced to pretend that they are catholics with protestant proclivities, or christians with liberal tendencies, or temperance men who now and then take a glass of wine, or, that although not members of any church their wives are, and that they subscribe liberally to all. The result of all this is that we reward hypocrisy and elect men entirely destitute of real principle; and this will never change until the people become grand enough to allow each other to do their own thinking.Our government should be entirely and purely secular. The religious views of a candidate should be kept entirely out of sight. He should not be compelled to give his opinion as to the inspiration of the bible, the propriety of infant baptism, or the immaculate conception. All these things are private and personal. The people ought to be wise enough to select as their officers men who know something of political affairs, who comprehend the present greatness, and clearly perceive the future grandeur of our country. If we were in a storm at sea, with deck wave-washed and masts strained and bent with storm, and it was necessary to reef the top sail, we certainly would not ask the brave sailor who volunteered to go aloft, what his opinion was on the five points of Calvinism. Our government has nothing to do with religion. It is neither christian nor pagan; it is secular. But as long as the people persist in voting for or against men on account of their religious views, just so long will hypocrisy hold place and power. Just so long will the candidates crawl in the dust—hide their opinions, flatter those with whom they differ, pretend to agree with those whom they despise; and just so long will honest men be trampled under foot.
That's the thing about rocks--they don't break easily. When I held them, I wanted to be like them-strong and steady, weathered but not broken.
Once I went professionally to an archaeological expedition- and I learnt something there. In the course of an excavation, when something comes up out of the ground, evEryThing is cleared away very carefully all around it. You take away the loose earth, and you scare here and there with a knife until finally your object is there, all alone, ready to be drawn and photographed with no extraneous matter confusing it. That is what I have been seeking TO do- clear away the extraneous matter so that we can see the truth-the naked shining truth.
[About describing atomic models in the language of classical physics:]We must be clear that when it comes to atoms, language can be used only as in poetry. The poet, too, is not nearly so concerned with describing facts as with creating images and establishing mental connections.
If a single cell, under appropriate conditions, becomes a man in the space of a few years, there can surely be no difficulty in understanding how, under appropriate conditions, a cell may, in the course of untold millions of years, give origin to the human race.
Yeast is to flour as action is to ambition. Rising to success requires adding and alternating starters.
Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it, so that when men come to be undeceived, it is too late; the jest is over, and the tale hath had its effect: like a man, who hath thought of a good repartee when the discourse is changed, or the company parted; or like a physician, who hath found out an infallible medicine, after the patient is dead.
After Jesus showed up, the Old Testament basically became a way for Bible publishers to keep their word coun
Initially the snow had been beautiful, but not so much now. The softness and sparkle still charmed, but the storm occluded the sky, denying us the stars. At the moment, I needed to see a firmament of stars, needed to gaze past the moon and through the constellations, needed to see what can't be seen--infinity.
More about the selection theory: Jerne meant that the Socratic idea of learning was a fitting analogy for 'the logical basis of the selective theories of antibody formation': Can the truth (the capability to synthesize an antibody) be learned? If so, it must be assumed not to pre-exist; to be learned, it must be acquired. We are thus confronted with the difficulty to which Socrates calls attention in Meno [ ... ] namely, that it makes as little sense to search for what one does not know as to search for what one knows; what one knows, one cannot search for, since one knows it already, and what one does not know, one cannot search for, since one does not even know what to search for. Socrates resolves this difficulty by postulating that learning is nothing but recollection. The truth (the capability to synthesize an antibody) cannot be brought in, but was already inherent.
Evolution is a blind giant who rolls a snowball down a hill. The ball is made of flakes—circumstances. They contribute to the mass without knowing it. They adhere without intention, and without foreseeing what is to result. When they see the result they marvel at the monster ball and wonder how the contriving of it came to be originally thought out and planned. Whereas there was no such planning, there was only a law: the ball once started, all the circumstances that happened to lie in its path would help to build it, in spite of themselves.
Natural selection is not the wind which propels the vessel, but the rudder which, by friction, now on this side and now on that, shapes the course.
If the entire course of evolution were compressed into a single year, the earliest bacteria would appear at the end of March, but we wouldn't see the first human ancestors until 6 a.m. on December 31st. The golden age of Greece, about 500 BCE, would occur just thirty seconds before midnight.
The closest analogy, the one her brain reached for and rejected and reached for again, was splashing into a lake. It was cold, but not cold. There was a smell, rich and loamy. The smell of growth and decay. She was aware of her body, the skin, the sinew, the curl of her gut. She was aware of the nerves that were firing in her brain as she became aware of the nerves firing in her brain. She unmade herself and watched herself being unmade. All the bacteria on her skin and in her blood, the virii in her tissues. The woman who had been Elvi Okoye became a landscape. A world. She fell farther in.
Claiming the budget can't allow it reminds me of when you walk into a restaurant at a civilized hour like ten o'clock and they say the kitchen is closed. For years I would hear this, and think, damn, just a little too late, oh well, thank you, I guess it's Denny's ag
Pure analysis puts at our disposal a multitude of procedures whose infallibility it guarantees; it opens to us a thousand different ways on which we can embark in all confidence; we are assured of meeting there no obstacles; but of all these ways, which will lead us most promptly to our goal? Who shall tell us which to choose? We need a faculty which makes us see the end from afar, and intuition is this faculty. It is necessary to the explorer for choosing his route; it is not less so to the one following his trail who wants to know why he chose it.
The sutras liken reincarnation to the relationship between teachers and students. A singing teacher teaches students how to sing. His students learn techniques and benefit from direct experiential advice from their teacher. But the teacher doesn't remove a song from his throat and insert it into a student's mouth. Similarly, reincarnation is a continuity of everything we have learnt, like lighting one candle from another, or a face and its reflection in a mirror.
Is it not true that the clever rogue is like the runner who runs well for the first half of the course, but flags before reaching the goal: he is quick off the mark, but ends in disgrace and slinks away crestfallen and uncrowned. The crown is the prize of the really good runner who perseveres to the end.