Fire, ice, asteroids and pole shifts are bogeymen with which we distract ourselves from the real threat of our time. In an age when everyone invents his own truth, there is no community, only factions. Without community, there can be no consensus to resist the greedy, the envious, the power-mad narcissists who seize control and turn the institutions of civilization into a series of doom machines.
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He was sure that he was not the cause of the abrupt silence. His passage through the canyon had not previously disturbed either birds or cicadas. Something was out there. An intruder of which the ordinary forest creatures clearly did not approve. He took a deep breath and held it again, straining to hear the slightest movement in the woods. This time he detected the rustle of brush, a snapping twig, the soft crunch of dry leaves-and the unnervingly peculiar, heavy, ragged breathing of something big.
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Living in the modern age, death for virtue is the wage. So it seems in darker hours. Evil wins, kindness cowers. Ruled by violence and vice we all stand upon thin ice. Are we brave or are we mice, here upon such thin, thin ice? Dare we linger, dare we skate? Dare we laugh or celebrate, knowing we may strain the ice? Preserve the ice at any price?
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It may sound strange, but when you're a kid and you're in that environment, for some reason for a long time you think, when the doors are closed in other houses, this is what it's like everywhere. And then at some point you begin to realize that isn't true, and books were really the educational system that showed me that there were many better and different ways to live a life.
In tragedy and despair, when an endless night seems to have fallen, hope can be found in the realization taht the companion of night is not another night, that the companion of night is day, that darkness always gives way to light, and that death rules only half of creation, life the other half.
On those occasions when he had killed in the dark, he later needed to see his victims' faces because, in some unlit corner of his heart, he half expected to find his own face looking up at him, ice-white and dead-eyed. "Deep down," the dream-victim had said, "You know that you're already dead yourself, burnt out inside. You realize that you have far more in common with your victims after you've killed them than before.
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If God is an author and the universe is the biggest novel ever written, I may feel as if I'm the lead character in the story, but like every man and woman on Earth, I am a suporting player in one of billions of subplots. You know what happens to supporting players. Too often they are killed off in chapter 3, or in chapter 10, or in chapter 35. A supporting player always has to be looking over his shoulder.
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Evil itself may be relentless. I will grant you that, but love is relentless too. Friendship is a relentless force. Family is a relentless force. Faith is relentless force. The human spirit is relentless, and the human heart outlasts - and can defeat - even the most relentless force of all, which is time.
The human imagination may be the most elastic thing in the universe, stretching to encompass the millions of dreams that in centuries of relectless struggle built modern civilization, to entertain the endless doubts that hamper every human enterprise, and to conceive the vast menagerie of boogeymen that trouble every human heart.
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Between birth and burial, we find ourselves in a comedy of mysteries. If you don't think life is mysterious, if you believe you have it all mapped out, you aren't paying attention or you've anesthetized yourself with booze or drugs, or with a comforting ideology. And if you don't think life's a comedy - well, friend, you might as well hurry along to that burial. The rest of us need people with whom we can laugh. -Odd Thomas -Odd Apocalypse by Dean Koontz pg 30 chapter 4
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No matter how close we are to another person, few human relationships are as free from strife, disagreement, and frustration as is the relationship you have with a good dog. Few human beings give of themselves to another as a dog gives of itself. I also suspect that we cherish dogs because their unblemished souls make us wish - consciously or unconsciously - that we were as innocent as they are, and make us yearn for a place where innocence is universal and where the meanness, the betrayals, and the cruelties of this world are unknown.
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Language can't describe reality. Literature has no stable reference, no real meaning. Each reader's interpretation is equally valid, more important than the author's intention. In fact, nothing in life has meaning. Reality is subjective. Values and truths are subjective. Life itself is a kind of illusion. Blah, blah, blah, let's have another scotch.
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Sully disapproved of destruction for destruction's sake, which seemed ever more popular in the modern world, but he always took delight in burning out or otherwise eliminating Evil when Evil just couldn't keep its ugly head down and stay in the shadows, when it came right at you with all teeth bared. The world needed a little Evil, so Good had something to compare itself to, but you couldn't let it think it had the right-of-way on the road and an invitation to dinner.
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Some people misunderstand evil and believe it will relent, and because their misplaced hope inspires dark hearts to dream darker dreams, they are the fathers and mothers of all wars. Evil does not relent; it must be defeated. And even when defeated, uprooted, and purified by fire, evil leaves behind a seed that will one day germinate and, in blooming, again be misunderstood.
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We were fortunate his brief psychic vision distracted him from what his fingertips could have told him about my face. Of course we were aware that temporary clairvoyance was a lame and unlikely explanation. The ordering of this world, however is so abstruce, so deep and complex, most explanations that people to make sense of moments of strange experience are inadequate. Our very existence as thinking creatures is an astonishment that cant be solved. Every human cell, with its thousands of protein chains, is more complex than a 747 or the largest cruise ship, in fact more complex than the two combined. All life on earth, in its extravagant variety, offers itself for study, but though we probe to ever deeper layers of its structure, the meaning eludes us. There is no end of wonders and mysteries: fireflies and music boxes, the stars that outnumber all the grains of sand on all the beaches of the world.
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When you have dogs, you witness their uncomplaining acceptance of suffering, their bright desire to make the most of life in spite of the limitations of age and disease, their calm awareness of the approaching end when their final hours come. They accept death with a grace that I hope I will one day be brave enough to muster.
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The geometry of judgment is a circle. Hate is a snake that turns to consume itself from the tail, a circle that diminishes to a point, then to nothing. Pride is such a snake, and envy, and greed. Love, however, is a hoop, a wheel, that rolls on forever. We are rescued by those whom we have rescued. The saved become the saviors of their saviors.
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Odd: I wish I could believe in reincarnation. Chief Porter: Not me. Once down the track is enough of a test. Pass me or fail me, Dear Lord, but don't make me go through high school again. Odd: If there's something we want so bad in this life but we can't have it, maybe we could get it the next time around. Chief Porter: Or maybe not getting it, accepting less without bitterness and being grateful for what we have is a part of what we're here to learn.
Because God is never cruel, there is a reason for all things. We must know the pain of loss; because if we never knew it, we would have no compassion for others, and we would become monsters of self-regard, creatures of unalloyed self-interest. The terrible pain of loss teaches humility to our prideful kind, has the power to soften uncaring hearts, to make a better person of a good one.
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When we hope, we usually hope for the wrong thing. We yearn for tomorrow and the progress that it presents. But yesterday was once tomorrow, and where was the progress in it? Or we yearn for yesterday, for what was or what might have been. But as we are yearning, the present is becoming the past, so the past is nothing but our yearning for second chances.
Most people desperately desire to believe that they are a part of a great mystery, that Creation is a work of grace and glory, not merely the result of random forces colliding. Yet each time that they are given but one reason to doubt, a worm in the apple of the heart makes them turn away from a thousand proofs of the miraculous, whereupon they have a drunkard's thirst for cynicism, and they feed upon despair as a starving man upon a loaf of bread.
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