The extent of our knowledge will always be, at the same time, the measure of the extent of our ignorance…The way of ignorance, therefore, is to be careful, to know the limits and the efficacy of our knowledge. It is to be humble and to work on an appropriate scale.
The great enemy of freedom is the alignment of political power with wealth.
The field must remember the forest, the town must remember the field, so that the wheel of life will turn, and the dying be met by the newborn.
The shoddy work of despair, the pointless work of pride, equally betray Creation. They are wastes of life.
Do unto those downstream as you would have those upstream do unto you.
When I rise up let me rise up joyful like a bird. When I fall let me fall without regret like a leaf.
Outdoors we are confronted everywhere with wonders; we see that the miraculous is not extraordinary but the common mode of existence.
I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief.
I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light.
For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
A society wishing to endure must speak the language of care-taking, faith-keeping, kindness, neighborliness, and peace. That language is another precious resource that cannot be “privatized.”
Be like the fox who makes more tracks than necessary, some in the wrong direction. Practice resurrection.
Protest that endures, I think, is moved by a hope far more modest than that of public success: namely, the hope of preserving qualities in one's own heart and spirit that would be destroyed by acquiescence.
Real efficiency is long-term efficiency. It is to be found in means that are in keeping with and preserving of their ends, in methods of production that preserve the sources of production, in workmanship that is durable and of high quality.
Be joyful, though you have considered all the facts.”
It is better, granting imperfection in both ways, to be imperfect and together than to be imperfect and alone.
The positive power of virtue is enormous.
We seem to have been living for a long time on the assumption that we can safely deal with parts, leaving the whole to take care of itself. But now the news from everywhere is that we have to begin gathering up the scattered pieces, figuring out where they belong, and putting them back together. For the parts can be reconciled to one another only within the pattern of the whole thing to which they belong.
To damage the earth is to damage your children.
We need to be honest in dishonest times when it is easier to fight for our principles than to live up to them.
You cannot save the land apart from the people, or the people apart from the land.
Our current idea of freedom is only the freedom to do as we please: to sell ourselves for a high salary, a home in the suburbs and idle weekends. But that is a freedom dependent upon affluence, which is in turn dependent upon the rapid consumption of exhaustible supplies. The other kind of freedom is the freedom to take care of ourselves and of each other. The freedom of affluence opposes and contradicts the freedom of community life.
A proper community … is a commonwealth: a place, a resource, an economy. It answers the needs, practical as well as social and spiritual, of its members – among them the need to need one another. The answer to the present alignment of political power with wealth is the restoration of the identity of community and economy.
You can struggle, embattle yourself, resist evil until you become evil… And I see with considerable sorrow that I am not going to get done fighting and live at peace in anything like the simple way I thought I would.