Latest Quotes

Although the world is very full of suffering it is also full of the overcoming of it.

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I cannot afford the luxury of despair.

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A new vision is needed because the unrelenting pressure to use more, produce more and consume more cannot be sustained. We want to counter the heavy weight of the almighty dollar. We want to build a world in which caring for and about people is a priority.

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Someone needs to explain to me why wanting clean drinking water makes you an activist, and why proposing to destroy water with chemical warfare doesn’t make a corporation a terrorist?

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Every time a woman shares her compelling insight, it reinforces how necessary we are to the discussion.

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We rose up. We shared our stories of survival. We said: humanity and nuclear weapons cannot coexist.

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Authentic community change moves at the speed of trust.

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We need 'a new coalition of decency' against populism.

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An artist needs a certain amount of turmoil and confusion.

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Illness is the great confessional . . . Things are said. Truths blurted out which the cautious respectability of health conceals.

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I don’t envy those who live ‘better’ lives than me. I won’t resign to adversity.

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Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars.

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There is one way and one way only. Down the banks of Labour, through the water of suffering.

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They wanna wreck this Earth. Why? I cannot understand. Nature has got to be the standard, and it never has been. All these places count for us.

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Connections are the harness that pulls your wagon.

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Activism is not about embracing a famous person who makes an album about a situation. It’s about facing hard truths that may make you feel uncomfortable.

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I’m angry that I live in a country where, still, no one listens until a white man says it.

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If the legends fall silent, who will teach the children of our ways?

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I don’t take my strategies too seriously anymore. They come and go. Only my convictions have remained constant.

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If history is, as I believe, a feast, the savour comes from its people.

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I am working to make sure we don’t only protect the environment, we also improve governance.

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There's always someone trying to make change happen and to make our world even more beautiful.

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Nobody sees a flower, really. It is so small it takes time. We haven’t time and to see takes time, like having a friend takes time.

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Social innovation is not just new ways to fix old problems. It’s bringing old ways forward into a new context.

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A word after a word after a word is power.

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People working in the field of social media bear a particular responsibility for imagining, interrogating and forming this new world that is just beginning, for what use is our insatiable appetite for connectivity, our constant embrace of new tools, our perpetually self-reflecting conversation, if not for the job of shaping this new world with some degree of insight and deliberateness.

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The need for solace is so deep, you mistake it for beauty.

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Could we ever know each other in the slightest without the arts?”

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Courage is the courage to act with integrity, to say yes when it is ethically appropriate and the courage to say no when, likewise, that is ethically required.

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It is the essence of imaginative culture that it transcends the limits both of the naturally possible and of the morally acceptable.

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When an entire society believes something is impossible, it suppresses, by its very way of life, the evidence that would contradict that belief.

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I think that if you work in culture, you work in social impact.

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My culture is my world.

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A voice is a human gift; it should be cherished and used, to utter fully human speech as possible. Powerlessn ess and silence go together.

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There’s almost always a community leader, and nine times out of 10, it’s going to be a mom.

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In an extraordinary time, the stakes are existential.

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Before it is received, It is an offering. After it is received, it requires an offering. One gives oneself. Nothing else will do.

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The moment of recognition happens as if by magic; and yet, when we reflect on it, we see – its very name tells us this – that it is impossible without prior experience.

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Grace comes, but not often, and you don’t get to say when or how.

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Everything depends on everything else.

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This is fundamental. All effective forms of protest are illegal until they succeed...t doesn’t mean they have to be violent. There are lots of different ways to be illegal. But it does mean that you have to say, “I’m trying to change a situation that is so important that I will disobey the law. My protest stands above the law.” And you also have to accept the consequences of that.

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Between religion’s ‘this is’ and poetry’s ‘ but suppose this is,’ there must always be some kind of tension, until the possibilities and the actual meet at infinity.

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Funny how some things that start spontaneously end that way. Eat a peach.

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Try. Play. Trust. Take a leap of faith! Something will emerge… imagined for you, for me, for us.

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If I waited for perfection... I would never write a word.

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If you're going to dream why dream small?

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We live in a culture that has been hijacked by the management consultant ethos. We want everything boiled down to the Power Point slide. We want metrics and ‘show me numbers.’ That runs counter to the immensely complex nature of so many social, economic and political problems. You cannot devise an algorithm to fix them.

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The prejudice and discrimination and the racism that I have faced over my lifetime could have made me a hater, but my beginnings growing up in a small Black community […] filled me with such love and compassion for others that hate was impossible for me to internalize.

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It’s not the truth unless everyone wins.

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Dance first. Think later. It’s the natural order.

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Place is crucial... you don't start in an abstract sense. You start where you are. (Dr. Frances Westley)

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There is a direct connection between violence against the earth and violence against women.

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My activism has to do with my conscience; I cannot let certain things slide without doing something. My public speaking is part of an art form that is cultural.

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There are so many people who keep our democracy moving in private and never get recognized. How and why someone gets involved shouldn't be a state secret—it should be a state celebration.

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The word "humus" has such power, because I think humanity comes from it, humility comes from it, humidity comes from it—everything that gives life and creates our humanity comes from it.

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Disability is inherently radical, lived in defiance of the so-called ordinary.

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All my life I have recommended that one must ask questions, take a position and act upon it.

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We can’t resist this rifling around in the past, sifting the untrustworthy evidence, linking any stray names and questionable dates and anecdotes together, hanging onto threads, insisting on being joined to dead people and therefore to life.

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Educate a boy, and you educate an individual. Educate a girl, and you educate a community.’

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If you are not part of the problem you can't be part of the solution.

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But losing my freedom in Somalia taught me a lot about how to get it back. Every day, I make the choice to move forward and to remember that true power is derived from kindness. In the end, Ali Omar Ader’s fate has nothing to do with mine.

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We benefit from breaking bread with the widest possible variety of folks.

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Dreams shape reality.

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We can do this, the world is still ripening every one of us — even the bad guys, even the guys we don’t like. Babies, elders, bozos and angels — we’re all ripening, is what I think.

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Whether victim or perpetrator, part of being human is rolling up our sleeves and taking an active part in repairing harm.

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Equity for children needs to come in a leap not in a shuffle.

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Now more than at any other time in our history, we need to bring our intelligence and imagination to sustain our life support systems. –

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Politics is the skilled use of blunt objects.

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But that's the nature of art, it scrapes up against those ugly places and concedes their existence. Which is very different from performing, fetishizing or objectifying that ugliness, resulting in something closer, along the spectrum, to spectacle rather than art.

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Success is getting what you want, happiness is wanting what you get.

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I sing my sorrow and I paint my joy.

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I'm a storyteller and an artist. My job is to move people and the best way to do that is to come right out of the guts with it.

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There are no passengers on spaceship earth. We are all crew.

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It's a joke to think that anyone is one thing. We're all such complex creatures. But if I'm going to be a poster child for anything, anger's a gorgeous emotion. It gets a bad rap, but it can make great changes happen.

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An obsession with ‘present mindedness’ wipes out concerns about past or future.

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I aspire to be an ally to those making change from the far margins, but it is not my place to declare myself an ally. People are given status as allies of fundamental change makers. It is not a title you can claim for yourself, no matter how well intentioned you are.

  , Radical innovation is never acceptable, Aug 29, 2016
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Every morning I open two presents…My eyes. & Courtesy.

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Growth itself contains the germ of happiness.

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A lot of being a poet consists of willed ignorance.

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It is time for fresh thinking and bold actions. We must unleash the creativity and resourcefulness of Canadians in all parts of society so that we can tackle the complex and interrelated challenges of the 21st century.

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A story is a shifting creature, an eternal mirror that catches our lives at unexpected angles,

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When we support one another, we are stronger. When we talk about our experience, we find meaning. When we reflect on the meaning of our shared experience, we form a movement. When we realize that we are a movement, we know we are not alone and that we are powerful. When we feel powerful, we can carry on taking care.

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Solitude is the furnace of transformation. –

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Surely all possibilities are born out of a dialectic with impossibility.

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Anger is powerful; it stirs change.

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Love, I'm pretty sure is light.

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Well, you know, you get wiped-out. And the deeper the wipe-out gets, the deeper the reluctance to use ornament or to use any of the other facilities that brought you to the wipe-out. See, if you never get wiped-out then the natural assumption is the things you’re doing are right.

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I've traveled enough to realize there are brilliant people in every community who know solutions. They don't need saviours, they need allies.

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We do what only lovers can: make a gift out of necessity.

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So, if am in this World to deliver any messages I wouldn't want to be a preacher. I would want to be a painter.

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I would like to say that I am an artist so that I can beautify the world and battle conditioned consciousness with the same tools used to condition it.

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Genius comes alive in the places where we work and live.

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It may seem hard to believe, but it's catastrophe that offers the most promise for an even richer life. This is the gateway to the good stuff. In other words, you never truly know which way the wind is blowing until the shit hits the fan.

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You look at the tiniest village and the tiniest person in that village: a very capable person, a very intelligent person. You have only to create the proper environment to support these people so that they can change their own lives.

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I Imagine and paint from memory. I don’t copy much… just have to guess my work up.

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There are wonderful things out there for you to learn and all you need to do is pay attention.

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It’s easier to desire and pursue the attention of tens of millions of total strangers, than it is to accept the love and loyalty of the people closest to us.

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Canada was built on dead beavers.

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Not wanting to better yourself is fecklessness.

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“Maybe” comes with no guarantees, only a chance. But “maybe” has always been the best odds the world has offered to those who set out to alter its course – to find a new land across the sea, to end slavery, to enable women to vote, to walk on the moon, to bring down the Berlin Wall.

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Oh it’s delightful to have ambitions. I am so glad I have such a lot. And there never seems to be any end to them – that’s the best of it. Just as soon as you attain to one ambition you see another glittering higher up still. It does make life so interesting.

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My hope is that these picture will stimulate a process of thinking about something essential to our survival; something we often take for granted – until it’s gone.

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It turns out that creativity suffers if you’re too sad or too happy all the time. Ups and downs are good, and unhelpful myths about what it takes to make art distract from the fun of zeroing in on easel time’s most basic movements — what I call, “organic plodding with joy.

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Common sense is a myth of asymmetrical power disguised as the obvious. There is no such thing, except in the minds of people who don’t want to change the way they look at the world.

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You have the potential to completely alter someone's life when you believe in young people.

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I think the older we get the more we have to say. I could not have written this book back when I was twenty, or even when I was 30 … I had to be hurt into writing books.

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We must have ideals and try to live up to them, even if we never quite succeed. Life would be a sorry business without them. With them it’s grand and great.

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Life comes from life.

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"Hands on" lets you know whether you can get your mind and abilities around your dreams. We think more inventively and originally when we're up to our elbows in the muck of our passion.

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“… those who think metaphorically are enabled to think truly because the shape of their thinking echoes the shape of the world.

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And the moon shines off my beautiful scars.

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Love, there is only love… to explain what we don’t understand.

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Anger is very natural. It comes out of fear, it comes out of dishonour, it’s a reaction to anything that threatens us and it’s addictive. To forgive and say, I’m going to let it go, give it to the higher power, whatever we call it, and then find something good in it, it’s not an easy process.

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We were meant to be in a state of wonder. Wonder, and a state of abject humility at the same time.

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Respect actually means listening to something you’d rather not hear… and listening must include the possibility of recognizing there may be rights on the other side.

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The truth about stories is that that’s all we are…But don’t say in the years to come that you would have lived your life differently if only you had heard this story. You’ve heard it now.

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Nothing is less real than realism. Details are confusing. It is only by selection, by elimination, by emphasis, that we get at the real meaning of things.

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It was a mystery presented without explanation and without hope of explanation, in all insolence, like a clear blue sky.

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Yesterday, no trees demanded insight from me. And they won’t again today. Therefore, I walk among them again.

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But beauty is the abundant gift that cannot be summoned. (It pours into our awareness when we are open. Vulnerable. Curious. Present. Still. And it is transformative.) Where laws break or bend us, beauty summons us to our lives. It whispers hope. It affirms our worthiness, the worthiness of being, and shows us how to hallow and how to love.

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We can't just think our way out of this crisis. We've got to feel our way through.

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We urgently need to do everything in our power to preserve the natural habitats that still exist, not only for the sake of biodiversity but also for the well-being of our own souls. All our life force has its origins in unfettered nature. This message is, for me, inseparably connected with the wild, free-roaming wolves of Canada.

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People's lives, in [my home town] as elsewhere, were dull, simple, amazing, unfathomable - deep caves paved with kitchen linoleum.

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Peace begins at home. Peace begins with me.

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You don’t change the world by doing what you’re told.

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Just as one tree standing alone would soon be destroyed by the first strong wind which came along, so it is impossible for any person, any family, or any community to stand alone against the troubles of this world.

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In order to make something this big, this complex happen, you have to have a crazy imagination of all the big things, the good things that could happen and hold that vision.

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Because you are human beings you are going to meet failure. You are going to meet disappointment, injustice, betrayal, and irreparable loss. You will find you're weak where you thought yourself strong. You'll work for possessions and then find they possess you. You will find yourself — as I know you already have — in dark places, alone, and afraid. What I hope for you, for all my sisters and daughters, brothers and sons, is that you will be able to live there, in the dark place. To live in the place that our rationalizing culture of success denies, calling it a place of exile, uninhabitable, foreign.

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Finding beauty in a broken world is acknowledging that beauty leads us to our deepest and highest selves. It inspires us. We have an innate desire for grace. It's not that all our definitions of beauty are the same, but when you see a particular heron in the bend in the river, day after day, something in your soul stirs. We remember what it means to be human.

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Every woman has a well-stocked arsenal of anger potentially useful against those oppressions, personal and institutional, which brought that anger into being.

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Your need for acceptance can make you invisible in this world. Risk being seen in all of your glory.

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Let’s find a way to belong to this time and place together. Our future, and the well-being of all our children, rests with the kind of relationships we build today.

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"Learning to focus and pay attention, if only for a short time, has been identified as a primary key to the development of human effectiveness."

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All feminism to me is making sure that people are safe.

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Change is like a friend you haven't seen in ages... it needs to be embraced before you can both laugh about the good old days.

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Human life, under any circumstances, never ceases to have meaning.

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Rock bottom became the solid foundation where I built my life.

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Nothing could be more miraculous than the fact that we have a consciousness that makes the world intelligible to us and are moved by what is beautiful.

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I am resolutely opposed to all innovation, all change, but I am determined to understand what’s happening.

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When you look at business results, most of the things that other corporate forms are recognized for actually are things that co-operatives can do better, stronger, more efficiently, faster.

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You’ve got to bumble forward into the unknown.

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Fear is a Natural reaction to moving closer to the truth.

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There are only two purposes for human beings – to love and to create.

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If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is part of yourself. What isn’t part of ourselves doesn’t disturb us.

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Love doesn’t mean doing extraordinary or heroic things. It means knowing how to do ordinary things with tenderness.

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We are stardust. We are golden. And we’ve got to get ourselves back to the garden.

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First you dream and then you lace up your boots.

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Design creates culture. Culture shapes values. Values determine the future.

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It’s important for you to understand that your experience facing and overcoming adversity is actually one of your biggest advantages...Living without privilege makes you stronger.

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Human energy must be unleashed by the universal dissemination of ideas.

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Joy is the holy fire that keeps our purpose warm and our intelligence aglow.

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Play is the work of the child.

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Charity should be abolished and replaced by justice.

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Civility is the enabling condition of a larger debate about the world we want.

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A good organizer is a social arsonist who goes around setting people on fire.

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Place is crucial…you don’t start in an abstract sense. You start where you are.

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Cure without care is as dehumanizing as a gift given with a cold heart.

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If I knew where I was going, I wouldn’t do it. When I can predict or plan it, I don’t do it.

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We have to find a way to make beauty necessary and a necessity out of beauty.

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Reality simply consists of different points of view.

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It is above all by the imagination that we achieve perception and compassion and hope.

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Without my intense experiences in the wilderness, which often brought me to my very limits, I wouldn't have known how far my own strengths extend and where they actually come from. In untamed nature, I learned to respect that which is uncontrollable, to accept it, and finally recognize it as an essential part of my own life.

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Big achievements are built on patience.

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How will you honour the ancestors when they ask what you’ve done with their sacrifices?

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Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.

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If we are afraid of our desert places then we become more afraid of the vulnerability outside ourselves — of the other.

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The patterns of our lives reveal us. Our habits measure us. Our battles with our habits speak of dreams yet to become real.

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To make use … of the sufferings that chance inflicts upon us is better than inflicting discipline upon oneself.

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Fear is the root of all exclusion. Trust is the root of all inclusion.

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A small act is worth a million thoughts.

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All of us are better when we're loved.

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Just like any revolution eats its children, unchecked market fundamentalism can devour the social capital essential for the long-term dynamism of capitalism itself. All ideologies are prone to extremes. Capitalism loses its sense of moderation when the belief in the power of the market enters the realm of faith.

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The real task is for the oppressed to liberate not just themselves but their oppressors, and thereby recover the humanity of both.

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The arts... are not a frill. They are the heart of the matter, because they are about our hearts, and our [progress in the material world] is generated by our emotions, not by our minds. A society without the arts would have broken its mirror and cut out its heart.

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At some point in life the world’s beauty becomes enough. You don’t need to photograph, paint, or even remember it.

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Peace requires participation.

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Many are cold ... but few are frozen.

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But politeness is no substitute for morality, and won’t save us in the end.

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..for social innovators…flow occurs not so much internally as externally – in the relationship between their own activity and that of others…The division between audience and actors seem to dissolve and all are brought into a world made anew…When social innovations take flight… the innovators are influencing their context while their context is influencing them in an endless to and fro.

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Wherever and whenever people shall gather there shall be time place and means of their education.

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Knowing that ordinary people have the power to come together, to organize, and that they can change policies, this is what really engaged me.

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I document landscapes that, whether you think of them as beautiful or monstrous, or as some strange combination of the two, are clearly not vistas of an inexhaustible, sustainable world.

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Music is dance that you can't see.

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In the extreme depths of suffering, you really find what you need to sustain you. I have experienced the resilience of the human spirit. If the feeling of peace comes when we realize that all human beings are made of love, that is when fear is gone and you can move more easily into a peaceful state.

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Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy.

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The sad and unfortunate fact is that we continue to view poverty as the fault of the individual and ignore the social and economic systems and mechanisms that are so often responsible for it.

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We are working on instrumental problems when we are actually dealing with existential challenges.

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It doesn't matter whether a sequence of words is called a history or a story: that is, whether it is intended to follow a sequence of actual events or not. As far as its verbal shape is concerned, it will be equally mythical in either case.

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When it comes to moving health care practices forward efficiently, Canada is a country of perpetual pilot projects. We seldom move proven projects into stable, funded programs, and we rarely transfer the outcomes of pilot projects across jurisdictions.

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We may not be big but we’re small.

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A large small group of people. I think a small group of people could certainly change it for the worst pretty quickly, and it’s changing it for the better that is often more difficult… especially since your idea of better might be someone else’s idea of worse.

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Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity.

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Peacemaking, it is welcoming those who are culturally, psychologically, intellectually different from us.

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In a democracy people don’t sit in the economic and social bleachers; they all play the game.

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Now that we can do anything what will we do?

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Urgent problems are solved by the courage and resourcefulness of ordinary humans.

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Words are events, they do things, change things. They transform both speaker and hearer; they feed energy back and forth and amplify it.

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Challenging status quo is easy. But going beyond that to challenge our own mind so we can work ‘with’, not necessarily against, status quo is much more difficult. It requires a lot of tolerance, integrity, and ingenuity.

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He knows everything like those who know so little.

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It’s a wonder that so many people are good, not that so many people are evil.

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Every aspect of human technology has a dark side, including the bow and arrow.

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We are now becoming more aware of our links to the universe and are reaching out to the universe for knowledge. We are evolving from earth creatures to star creatures. Our minds now explore the worlds beyond, and we sense a destiny beyond this planet.

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When you really think about your hand you begin to realize its connection, to sense the hum of your own being passing through it. When we look at a piece of the universe we should feel the same.

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If I have one thing I would encourage it’s that technologies aren’t neutral instruments. They have politics. We change them. They change us.

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Citizenship if it means anything means making our demands for justice active. It is not something we can do alone.

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The fool steps blindly, reminding us we cannot simply bear what is necessary, we must love it.

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Never explain, never retract, never apologize, just get the thing done and let them howl.

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I wish for a world that views disability, mental or physical, not as a hindrance but as unique attributes that can be seen as powerful assets if given the right opportunities.

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This could be our revolution. To love what is plentiful as much as what is scarce.

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Since I first started reading, I know that I think in quotations, and that I write what others have written, and that I can have no other ambition than to reshuffle and rearrange. I find great satisfaction in this task. And at the same time, I find that no satisfaction can be truly everlasting.

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May your choices reflect your hopes not your fears.

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Indigenous resistance is also about reclamation; it’s reclaiming who we are as a People and being able to reconnect with our territories and our lands and our waters… That land base is healing but it also holds the answers and the stories of who they are and if we don’t have that, then what do we have?

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The issues in politics are not complex, even though politicians tell us so in order to convince us of the politicians’ importance … and to keep us from criticizing them.

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We have forgotten our most ancient and tested survival strategy — to act with the future in mind.

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Where do you begin telling someone their world is not the only one?

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When a common, authentic language is found, the voice of Indigenous people can be amplified, and we can take control of our own narrative. Only then can we start building empathy with Canadians in regards to broken treaties, missing and murdered Indigenous women, accessibility to clean water, access to mental health services and the high number of Indigenous children in government care.

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Tips for surviving the regime: respect yourself and speak for others.

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In wildness is the salvation of the world. Perhaps this is the hidden meaning in the howl of the wolf, long known among mountains, but seldom perceived among humans.

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Surround yourself with people that push you to do and be better. No drama or negativity. Just higher goals and higher motivation. Good times and positive energy. No jealousy or hate. Simply bringing out the absolute best in each other.

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Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.

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Never do anything by halves if you want to get away with it. Be outrageous. Go the whole hog.

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The heart: it is a musical, rather than a physical organ.

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Kinship by blood is coarse and strong, kinship by choice—is fine. And what is fine can tear.

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Every human life includes moments of rage at unrecognition.

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I have already lost touch with a couple of people I used to be.

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You are born and born again into your life.

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Aesthetic purposes that don't lead to action are actions of distance.

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We cannot be truly alive without maintaining an awareness of death.

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It is no longer good enough to cry peace. We must act peace, live peace, and march in peace in alliance with the people of the world.”

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They say it can't be done, but sometimes that doesn't always work.

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Mental pain is less dramatic than physical pain, but it is more common and also more hard to bear. The frequent attempt to conceal mental pain increases the burden: it is easier to say “My tooth is aching” than to say “My heart is broken.”

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The original sin of addressing complex challenges is the belief that you change things without changing yourself.

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A true direction will come from overcoming adversity. Everyone — think deeply, fight harder and obtain splendid direction for your life. I wish for you to gain guidance from your deep thinking and spread your ideas all over the world in order to establish a wonderful life and world. I think that it is very important. Let’s fight together for it. It is my strongest wish as an artist.

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Anger is very natural. It comes out of fear, it comes out of dishonour, it’s a reaction to anything that threatens us and it’s addictive. To forgive and say, I’m going to let it go, give it to the higher power, whatever we call it, and then find something good in it, it’s not an easy process.

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It was prophesized that the time would come when the voice of indigenous peoples would rise again after five hundred years of silence and oppression, to light a path to an eternal fire of peace, love, brotherhood and sisterhood amongst all nations.

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Without minute neatness of execution, the sublime cannot exist! Grandeur of ideas is founded on precision of ideas.

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You cannot save the land apart from the people, or the people apart from the land.

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We've been talked out of love, mercy, kindness. We've got to take those things back.

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Outdoors we are confronted everywhere with wonders; we see that the miraculous is not extraordinary but the common mode of existence.

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The way one learns has an impact on politics, on citizenship on democracy, on peace.

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Words are events, they do things, change things. They transform both speaker and hearer; they feed energy back and forth and amplify it. They feed understanding or emotion back and forth and amplify it.

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Anger continued on past its usefulness becomes unjust, then dangerous… It fuels not positive activism but regression, obsession, vengeance, self-righteousness. Corrosive, it feeds off itself, destroying its host in the process.

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If creativity is a habit, then the best creativity is the result of good work habits. They are the nuts and bolts of dreaming.

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The heart of the story is usually a place to arrive at, not a place to begin.

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The past is already in debt to the mismanaged present. And besides, contrary to what you may have heard or learned, the past is not done and it is not over, it’s still in process, which is another way of saying that when it’s critiqued, analyzed, it yields new information about itself. The past is already changing as it is being reexamined, as it is being listened to for deeper resonances. Actually it can be more liberating than any imagined future if you are willing to identify its evasions, its distortions, its lies, and are willing to unleash its secrets.

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Once they have you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about the answers.

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So when you experience pain, whether physical or mental, you have to recognize it just as it is and not exaggerate it ... When you can make peace with it, you won’t suffer as much.

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Peace, love, and happiness must always begin in us, with ourselves first. There is suffering, fear, and anger inside of us, and when we take care of it, we are taking care of the world.

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