A writer can't just be well-educated or good at research; to build a living, breathing world with interesting characters, you have to write from the gut. I'm not saying you have to live your life like a fantasy adventure. The trick is the ability to synthesize your own everyday experiences into your fiction. Infuse your characters with believable emotions and motivations. Infuse your world with rich sensory detail. For that you have to be in touch with your own existence and your own soul, the dark and the light of it.
It was over a century and a half ago that Clausewitz made his now famous remarks on the relationship of war to policy. Most simply, "war is not a mere act of policy, but a true political instrument, a continuation of political activity by other means." Political considerations reach into the military means, to influence "the planning of war, of the campaign, and often of the battle." Clausewitz clearly believed that statesmen could and should ensure that policy infuse military operations. Those in charge of policy require "a certain grasp of military affairs." They need to be soldiers, however. "What is needed in the post is distinguished intellect and character. He [the statesman] can always get the necessary military information somehow or other." Clausewitz was overoptimistic on this score. Few have challenged his judgement that policy must infuse acts of war, but the achievement of this goal has proven more difficult that he imagined... Functional specialization between soldiers and statesmen, and the tendency of soldiers to seek as much independence from civilian interference as possible, combine to make political-military integration an uncertain prospect.
What I think we need to do is infuse everyday and every action with the kind of values we hope will be in the future, with kindness, with nurturing, with dreams, ambition, using your talents, not resorting to violence, other forms of conflict resolution, with humor, with poetry, with music.
[M]ilitary metaphors have more and more come to infuse all aspects of the description of the medical situation. Disease is seen as an invasion of alien organisms, to which the body responds by its own military operations, such as the mobilizing of immunological "defenses", and medicine is "aggressive" as in the language of most chemotherapies.
The first step therefore is to make the black man come to himself; to pump back life into his empty shell; to infuse him with pride and dignity, to remind him of his complicity in the crime of allowing himself to be misused and therefore letting evil reign supreme in the country of his birth.
When I tried this morning, after an hour or so of unhappy thinking, to dip back into my meditation, I took a new idea with me: compassion. I asked my heart if it could please infuse my soul with a more generous perspective on my mind's workings. Instead of thinking that I was a failure, could I perhaps accept that I am only a human being--and a normal one, at that?
When I tried this morning, after an hour or so of unhappy thinking, to dip back into my meditation, I took a new idea with me: compassion. I asked my heart if it could please infuse my soul with a more generous perspective on my mind's workings. Instead of thinking that I was a failure, could I perhaps accept that I am only a human being-and a normal one, at that?
By becoming aware of God's Spirit, by slowing down and paying attention to the tastes and sounds and smells of the food we make and eat, we infuse our meals-and by extension our hearts-with a sense of awe, a depth of prayer that cannot help but transform our mindless eating into moving meditations.
Mary DeTurris Poust
The proper office of religion is to regulate the heart of men, humanize their conduct, infuse the spirit of temperance, order, andobedience; and as its operation is silent, and only enforces the motives of morality and justice, it is in danger of being overlooked, and confounded with these other motives.
I always get back to the question, is it really necessary that men should consume so much of their bodily and mental energies in the machinery of civilized life? The world seems to me to do much of its toil for that which is not in any sense bread. Again, does not the latent feeling that much of their striving is to no purpose tend to infuse large quantities of sham into men's work?
How many attractions for us have our passing fellows in the streets, both male and female, which our ethics forbid us to express, which yet infuse so much pleasure into life. A lovely child, a handsome youth, a beautiful girl, a heroic man, a maternal woman, a venerable old man, charm us, though strangers, and we cannot say so, or look at them but for a moment.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ironically, to 'inspire' means to breathe, to infuse life by breathing. As with a lot of things that have the capacity to inspire, it takes some time to get past the apparent boredom and find the hidden secrets. I figure if I keep harping on it, maybe someone will eventually explore the possibility long enough to realize just how breathtaking it is.
I have great faith in 'ordinary parents.' Who has a child's welfare more at heart than his ordinary parent? It's been my experience that when parents are given the skills to be more helpful, not only are they able to use these skills, but they infuse them with a warmth and a style that is uniquely their own.
Whatever events in progress shall disgust men with cities, and infuse into them the passion for country life, and country pleasures, will render a service to the whole face of this continent, and will further the most poetic of all the occupations of real life, the bringing out by art the native but hidden graces of the landscape.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
When a man is saved by divine grace, he is not wholly cleansed from the corruption of his heart. When we believe in Jesus Christ all our sins are pardoned; yet the power of sin, albeit that it is weakened and kept under by the dominion of the new-born nature which God doth infuse into our souls, doth not cease, but still tarrieth in us, and will do so to our dying day.
It becomes more necessary to see the truth as it is if you realise that the only vehicle for change are these people who have lost their personality. The first step therefore is to make the black man come to himself; to pump back life into his empty shell; to infuse him with pride and dignity, to remind him of his complicity in the crime of allowing himself to be misused and therefore letting evil reign supreme in the country of his birth.
I collected the instruments of life around me, that I might infuse a spark of being into the lifeless thing that lay at my feet. It was already one in the morning; the rain pattered dismally against the panes, and my candle was nearly burnt out, when, by the glimmer of the half-extinguished light, I saw the dull yellow eye of the creature open; it breathed hard, and a convulsive motion agitated its limbs...
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
When we infuse our actions with a focus on God and on the many blessings we receive in even the most mundane moments of our lives, we create sacred rituals that bring a sense of holiness, a sense of wholeness, to what we do and who we are. Like the Eucharistic feast that nourishes our heart and soul, every meal we eat with mindfulness[, ] each bite we take with gratitude, has the power to transform us inside and out, for all time.
Mary DeTurris Poust
Our musical alphabet is poor and illogical. Music, which should pulsate with life, needs new means of expression, and science alone can infuse it with youthful vigor. Why, Italian Futurists, have you slavishly reproduced only what is commonplace and boring in the bustle of our daily lives. I dream of instruments obedient to my thought and which with their contribution of a whole new world of unsuspected sounds, will lend themselves to the exigencies of my inner rhythm.
To work magic is to weave the unseen forces into form; to soar beyond sight; to explore the uncharted dream realm of the hidden reality; to infuse life with color, motion and strange scents that intoxicate; to leap beyond imagination into that space between the worlds where fantasy becomes real; to be at once animal and god. Magic is...the ultimate adventure.
If you want your ministry to have 'it', more important than anything else we've discussed, you must have 'it'. When it has filtered through your heart - the rare combination of passion, integrity, focus, faith, expectation, drive, hunger, and God's anointing - God tends to infuse your ministry with 'it'. He blesses your work. People are changed. Leaders grow. Resources flow. The ministry seems to take on a life of its own.
It took me better than a quarter century to learn, the hard way, that hard work at something you want to be doing is the most fun that you can have out of bed . . . to learn that the smart man finds ways to make everything he does be work; to learn that "leisure" time is truly pleasurable (indeed tolerable) only to the extent that is its subconscious grazing for information with which to infuse newer, better work.
Infuse your life with action. Don't wait for it to happen. Make it happen. Make your own future. Make your own hope. Make your own love. And whatever your beliefs, honor your creator, not by passively waiting for grace to come down from upon high, but by doing what you can to make grace happen... yourself, right now, right down here on Earth.
Sometimes I think it is ... frustration with life as it is lived day to day that compels me to write such long letters to people who seldom reply in kind, if indeed they reply at all. Somehow by compressing and editing the events of my life, I infuse them with a dramatic intensity totally lacking at the time, but oddly enough I find that years later what I remember is not the event as I lived it but as I described it in a letter.
Elizabeth Forsythe Hailey
Striding tall through Lauren St John's gorgeously written memoir is her father, and chapter after chapter their relationship is untangled and celebrated. Joy and a hunger for life infuse this book -- whether St John is writing about the harrowing years of Rhodesia's civil war, her childhood adventures in the bush, or the breaking apart of her family. Rainbow's End is a most generous and wise book.
Doctors should recognise the importance of the five human values; Truth, righteousness, Peace, Love and Non-violence. Love is the basis for all the other values. Doctors can infuse courage in patients by the love they show towards the patients. If doctors carry out their duties with love they will be crowned with success.
Sathya Sai Baba
The education of youth belongs to the priests, yet they do not take so much care of instructing them in letters, as in forming their minds and manners aright; they use all possible methods to infuse, very early, into the tender and flexible minds of children, such opinions as are both good in themselves and will be useful to their country, for when deep impressions of these things are made at that age, they follow men through the whole course of their lives, and conduce much to preserve the peace of the government, which suffers by nothing more than by vices that rise out of ill opinions.
I was blessed enough to meet Pope John Paul when I was about 19 or 20 years old in the Vatican; I had that privilege, .. My mother took me to visit him and I remember distinctly his incredible charisma and personal charm and his warmth and compassion. You felt it immediately the minute you met him, and that spirit I came away with, having met the man, is something that I've been constantly working on to infuse the character with, so that we can have his spirit and his love and his compassion, because that's really the essence of the man.
I believe that mycelium is the neurological network of nature. Interlacing mosaics of mycelium infuse habitats with information-sharing membranes. These membranes are aware, react to change, and collectively have the long-term health of the host environment in mind. The mycelium stays in constant molecular communication with its environment, devising diverse enzymatic and chemical responses to complex challenges.
Live a vital life. If you live well, you will earn well. If you live well, it will show in your face; it will show in the texture of your voice. There will be something unique and magical about you if you live well. It will infuse not only your personal life but also your business life. And it will give you a vitality nothing else can give.
I have one great political idea. . . . That idea is an old one. It is widely and generally assented to; nevertheless, it is very generally trampled upon and disregarded. The best expression of it, I have found in the Bible. It is in substance, "Righteousness exalteth a nation; sin is a reproach to any people" [Proverbs 14:34]. This constitutes my politics - the negative and positive of my politics, and the whole of my politics. . . . I feel it my duty to do all in my power to infuse this idea into the public mind, that it may speedily be recognized and practiced upon by our people.
Let me offer you, metaphorically, two magic wands that have sweeping powers to change society. With one wand you could wipe out all racism and discrimination from the hearts and minds of white America. The other wand you could wave across the ghettos and barrios of America and infuse the inhabitants with Japanese or Jewish values, respect for learning and ambition. ... I suggest that the best wand for society and for those who live in the ghettos and barrios would be the second wand.
Theater roles are written by the great masters. The greatest literature that you can possibly know are the theater roles like King Lear, Hamlet, and all of those great roles. So all you do is you dive into these unchallenged roles and see how far you can get, what kind of accolades you can get, and how good you can be in them. In movie roles, you can actually improve them by knowing a lot about your own stage technique, which helps a great deal in the cinema and how you can project inner humor even though the particular dialogue is not necessarily funny, but you can infuse it with humor.
And once their imaginations are liberated, they begin glimpse the grand interconnectedness of all things. Eternity begins to peek out from behind the everyday things and they see the trappings of any earthly moment as the stage and props for Heaven to reveal itself. There is now nothing ordinary. Everything is being used and spun out for His vast scheme and in His eternal economy, nothing is wasted. Suddenly, all the myriad moments and minutiae of a lifetime show their orchestration -there was nothing that did not lead to this! They look over all their time to find that His redemption has always been rushing, swooping, swerving through their experience, racing to and fro to intervene and infuse Grace.
The truth was that I didn't know my own mind. Just as you might move into a house and in the scatterbrained days of unpacking leave a broom in some corner, where it remains until someone uses it and then returns it to that corner, now knowing that it was there by casual chance, until slowly that corner becomes its hallowed place, where you can always find the broom - just as all traditions begin as accidents, how the borders of countries are formed, how we marry, how we make friends and children - so, until Oxford, had I lived, within a sequence of non decisions, and yet with the same misdirected conviction of intentionality with which humans infuse their errors and felicities alike.
My God, Sweetness beyond words, make bitter all the carnal comfort that draws me from love of the eternal and lures me to its evil self by the sight of some delightful good in the present. Let it not overcome me, my God. Let not flesh and blood conquer me. Let not the world and its brief glory deceive me, nor the devil trip me by his craftiness. Give me courage to resist, patience to endure, and constancy to persevere. Give me the soothing unction of Your spirit rather than all the consolations of the world, and in place of carnal love, infuse into me the love of Your name.
Thomas e Kempis
The cooking was invigorating, joyous. For Julia, the cooking fulfilled the promises that Le Cordon Bleu had made but never kept. Where Le Cordon Bleu always remained rooted in the dogma of French cuisine, Julia strove to infuse its rigors with new possibilities and pleasures. It must have felt liberating for her to deconstruct Careªme and Escoffier, respecting the traditions and technique while correcting the oversight. 'To her, ' as a noted food writer indicated, 'French culinary tradition was a frontier, not a religion.' If a legendary recipe could be improved upon, then let the gods beware.
WE ARE the creators of the seeds that we have planted in the past - whether they were happiness, comfort, abundance, prosperity, family, children, ideas, or even thoughts - that are giving birth into our world. Feel the arms of Mother Earth's beauty reaching out to you and be patient as you watch your seeds take root and grow. Nurture them as they become strong and healthy. Open yourself to the life force of the Universe as you nurture yourself, and infuse your soul with love and compassion from the loving space of your heart center. By doing so, soon others will see and feel your devotion. This benevolent energy that resides there will assist you in making sacrifices in order to care for and grow, and help others, as well as yourself.
Angie Karan Krezos
Was [Steve Jobs] smart? No, not exceptionally. Instead, he was a genius. His imaginative leaps were instinctive, unexpected, and at times magical. [... ] Like a pathfinder, he could absorb information, sniff the winds, and sense what lay ahead. Steve Jobs thus became the greatest business executive of our era, the one most certain to be remembered a century from now. History will place him in the pantheon right next to Edison and Ford. More than anyone else of his time, he made products that were completely innovative, combining the power of poetry and processors. With a ferocity that could make working with him as unsettling as it was inspiring, he also built the world's most creative company. And he was able to infuse into its DNA the design sensibilities, perfectionism, and imagination that make it likely to be, even decades from now, the company that thrives best at the intersection of artistry and technology.
If you'll kiss me back, " he whispered huskily, brushing his lips along the curve of her jaw, "I'll make it six million. If you'll go to bed with me tonight, " he continued, losing himself in the scent of her perfume and the softness of her skin, "I'll give you the world. But if you'll move in with me, " he continued, dragging his mouth across her cheek to the corner of her lips, "I'll do much better than that." Unable to turn her face farther because his arm was in the way, and unable to turn her body because his body was in the way, Meredith tried to infuse disdain in her voice and simultaneously ignore the arousing touch of his tongue against her ear. "Six million dollars and the whole world!" she said in a slightly shaky voice. "What else could you possibly give me if I move in with you?" "Paradise." Lifting his head, Matt took her chin between his thumb and forefinger and forced her to meet his gaze. In an aching, solemn voice he said, "I'll give you paradise on a gold platter. Anything you want- everything you want. I come with it, of course. It's a package deal." Meredith wallowed audibly, mesmerized by the melting look in his silver eyes and the rich timbre of his deep voice. "We'll be a family, " he continued, describing the paradise he was offering while he bent his head to her again. "We'll have children... I'd like six, " he teased, his lips against her temple. "But I'll settle for one. You don't have to decide now." She drew in a ragged breath and Matt decided he'd pushed matters as far as he dared for one night. Straightening abruptly, he chucked her under her chin. "Think about it, " he suggested with a grin.
Art is the conscious making of numinous phenomena. Many objects are just objects - inert, merely utilitarian. Many events are inconsequential, too banal to add anything to our experience of life. This is unfortunate, as one cannot grow except by having one's spirit greatly stirred; and the spirit cannot be greatly stirred by spiritless things. Much of our very life is dead. For primitive man, this was not so. He made his own possessions, and shaped and decorated them with the aim of making them not merely useful, but powerful. He tried to infuse his weapons with the nature of the tiger, his cooking pots with the life of growing things; and he succeeded. Appearance, material, history, context, rarity - perhaps rarity most of all - combine to create, magically, the quality of soul. But we modern demiurges are prolific copyists; we give few things souls of their own. Locomotives, with their close resemblance to beasts, may be the great exception; but in nearly all else with which today's poor humans are filling the world, I see a quelling of the numinous, an ashening of the fire of life. We are making an inert world; we are building a cemetery. And on the tombs, to remind us of life, we lay wreaths of poetry and bouquets of painting. You expressed this very condition, when you said that art beautifies life. No longer integral, the numinous has become optional, a luxury - one of which you, my dear friend, are fond, however unconsciously. You adorn yourself with the same instincts as the primitive who puts a frightening mask of clay and feathers on his head, and you comport yourself in an uncommonly calculated way - as do I. We thus make numinous phenomena of ourselves. No mean trick - to make oneself a rarity, in this overpopulated age.
Mainly, though, the Democratic Party has become the party of reaction. In reaction to a war that is ill conceived, we appear suspicious of all military action. In reaction to those who proclaim the market can cure all ills, we resist efforts to use market principles to tackle pressing problems. In reaction to religious overreach, we equate tolerance with secularism, and forfeit the moral language that would help infuse our policies with a larger meaning. We lose elections and hope for the courts to foil Republican plans. We lost the courts and wait for a White House scandal. And increasingly we feel the need to match the Republican right in stridency and hardball tactics. The accepted wisdom that drives many advocacy groups and Democratic activists these days goes like this: The Republican Party has been able to consistently win elections not by expanding its base but by vilifying Democrats, driving wedges into the electorate, energizing its right wing, and disciplining those who stray from the party line. If the Democrats ever want to get back into power, then they will have to take up the same approach... Ultimately, though, I believe any attempt by Democrats to pursue a more sharply partisan and ideological strategy misapprehends the moment we're in. I am convinced that whenever we exaggerate or demonize, oversimplify or overstate our case, we lose. Whenever we dumb down the political debate, we lose. For it's precisely the pursuit of ideological purity, the rigid orthodoxy and the sheer predictability of our current political debate, that keeps us from finding new ways to meet the challenges we face as a country. It's what keeps us locked in "either/or" thinking: the notion that we can have only big government or no government; the assumption that we must either tolerate forty-six million without health insurance or embrace "socialized medicine". It is such doctrinaire thinking and stark partisanship that have turned Americans off of politics.