So if you, O subsequent ones, ever deign to look down at us from your summit of effortless superiority, remember that you have only scaled it on the back of our efforts. For it is thankless to grope in the dark and tempting to rest until the light of understanding shines upon us. But if we are led into this temptation, your kingdom will never come.
Somehow I can't believe that there are any heights that can't be scaled by a man who knows the secrets of making dreams come true. This special secret, it seems to me, can be summarized in four Cs. They are curiosity, confidence, courage, and constancy, and the greatest of all is confidence. When you believe in a thing, believe in it all the way, implicitly and unquestionable.
Walt Disney Company
For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.
For in the night, unseen, a single warrior, In sombre harness mailed, Dreaded of man, and surnamed the Destroyer, The rampart wall has scaled. He passed into the chamber of the sleeper, The dark and silent room, And as he entered, darker grew, and deeper, The silence and the gloom.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
There is in the world no rock or tower of such a height that it cannot be scaled by any man (provided he lack not feet) if ladders are placed in the proper position or steps are cut in the rock, made in the right place, and furnished with railings against the danger of falling over. If we examine ourselves, we see that our faculties grow in such a manner that what goes before paves the way for what comes after.
John Amos Comenius
People will insist on building high and wide barriers directly in your path, often with the intent of closing you in. If you treat these obstacles like fencing walls, they will prove mightily so. I choose to see them as grand towers meant to be scaled and conquered, providing an added victory as well as a great view of the journey ahead.
Richelle E. Goodrich
It was what Aunty Ifeoma did to my cousins, I realized then, setting higher and higher jumps for them in the way she talked to them, in what she expected of them. She did it all the time believing they would scale the rod. And they did. It was different for Jaja and me. We did not scale the rod because we believed we could, we scaled it because we were terrified that we couldn't.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
The ones I loved fly as birds in the open sky above me. Soaring, weaving, calling to me to join them. I want so badly to follow them, but the seawater saturates my wings, making it impossible to lift them. The ones I hated have taken to the water, horrible scaled things that tear my salty flesh with needle teeth. Biting again and again. Dragging me beneath the surface.
He that resolves upon any great and good end, has, by that very resolution, scaled the chief barrier to it. He will find such resolution removing difficulties, searching out or making means, giving courage for despondency, and strength for weakness, and like the star to the wise men of old, ever guiding him nearer and nearer to perfection.
I know truth is more like a mountain that has to be scaled. The peak of the mountain pierces the clouds and can only rarely be seen, and has never been reached. And what you see of it, moreover, depends upon the flank of the mountain you stand upon, and how exhausted getting even so far has made you. Virtue lies in looking upwards, toiling upwards, and sometimes joyously leaping from one precarious crag of fact and feeling to the next.
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Will tossed his apple core into the air, at the same time drawing a knife from his belt and throwing it. The knife and the apple scaled across the room together, somehow managing to stick into the wall just beside Gabriel's head, the knife driven cleanly through the core and into the wood. "Say that again," said Will. "And i'll darken your daylights for you.
Isaac Watts, of course, is a hymn writer in the tradition of Congregationalism who lived in the seventeenth and early eighteenth century. He is very interesting and important because he was also a metaphysician. He knew a great deal about what was, for him, contemporary science. He was very much influenced by Isaac Newton, for example. There are planets and meteors and so on showing up in his hymns very often. But, again, the scale of his religious imagination corresponds to a very generously scaled scientific imagination.
Tucked inside the moments of this great sadness - this feeling of being punctured, scrambling and stricken - were also moments of the brightest, most swollen and logic shattering happiness I've ever experienced. One moment would be a wall of happiness so tall it could not be scaled; the next felt like falling into a pit of sadness that had no bottom. I realized you could not have one without the other, that this great capacity to love and be happy can be experienced only with this great risk of having happiness taken from you - to tremble, always, on the edge of loss.
Of all created things the source is one, Simple, single as love; remember The cell and seed of life, the sphere That is, of child, white bird, and small blue dragon-fly Green fern, and the gold four-petalled tormentilla The ultimate memory. Each latent cell puts out a future, Unfolds its differing complexity As a tree puts forth leaves, and spins a fate Fern-traced, bird feathered, or fish-scaled.
When may did so, he found every cup and saucer, plate, vase, and bowl standing arranged across the floor like pieces in a scaled-up chess game. "The Whitstable family tree, " Bryant explained, entering and setting down his tea tray. "It's the only way I could get it sorted out in my head. I had to see them properly laid out, who was descended from whom." He pointed to a milk jug. "Daisy Whitstable is bottom left-hand corner, by the fireguard. Next to her is the egg cup, brother Tarquin... Now, pass me Marion and Alfred Whitstable over there." "What's their significance?" "We need them to drink out of.
The ant's a centaur in his dragon world. Pull down thy vanity, it is not man Made courage, or made order, or made grace, Pull down thy vanity, I say pull down. Learn of the green world what can be thy place In scaled invention or true artistry, Pull down thy vanity, Paquin pull down! The green casque has outdone your elegance.
The heavy eyelids snapped open. Jack froze. A huge gold-and-amber eye, as big as a dinner plater, stared at him. The dark pupil shrank, focusing. Jack stood very still. The colossal head turned, the scaled lip only three feet from Jack. The golden eyes gazed at him, wirling with fiery color. Jack breathed in tiny, shallow breaths. Dont blink. Don't blink... Two gusts of wind erutped from the wyvern's nostrils Jack jumped straight up, bounced off the ground into another jump, and scrambled up the nearest tree. In the clearing, Gaston bent over, guffawing like an idiot. 'It's not funny!
I am Cinna's bird, ignited, flying frantically to escape something inescapable. The feathers of flame that grow from my body. Beating my wings only fans the blaze. I consume myself, but to no end. Finally, my wings begin to falter, I lose height, and gravity pulls me into a foamy sea the color of Finnick's eyes. I float on my back, which continues to burn beneath the water, but the agony quiets to pain. When I am adrift and unable to navigate, that's when they come. The dead. The ones I loved fly as birds in the open sky above me. Soaring, weaving, calling to me to join them. I want so badly to follow them, but the seawater saturates my wings, making it impossible to lift them. The ones I hated have taken to the water, horrible scaled things that tear my salty flesh with needle teeth. Biting again and again. Dragging me beneath the surface. The small white bird tinged in pink dives down, buries her claws in my chest, and tries to keep me afloat. "No, Katniss! No! You can't go!" But the ones I hated are winning, and if she clings to me, she'll be lost as well. "Prim, let go!" And finally she does.
The Children's Hour Between the dark and the daylight, When the night is beginning to lower, Comes a pause in the day's occupations, That is known as the Children's Hour. I hear in the chamber above me The patter of little feet, The sound of a door that is opened, And voices soft and sweet. From my study I see in the lamplight, Descending the broad hall stair, Grave Alice, and laughing Allegra, And Edith with golden hair. A whisper, and then a silence: Yet I know by their merry eyes They are plotting and planning together To take me by surprise. A sudden rush from the stairway, A sudden raid from the hall! By three doors left unguarded They enter my castle wall! They climb up into my turret O'er the arms and back of my chair; If I try to escape, they surround me; They seem to be everywhere. They almost devour me with kisses, Their arms about me entwine, Till I think of the Bishop of Bingen In his Mouse-Tower on the Rhine! Do you think, o blue-eyed banditti, Because you have scaled the wall, Such an old mustache as I am Is not a match for you all! I have you fast in my fortress, And will not let you depart, But put you down into the dungeon In the round-tower of my heart. And there will I keep you forever, Yes, forever and a day, Till the walls shall crumble to ruin, And moulder in dust away!
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Haven't I told you scores of times, that you're always beginners, and the greatest satisfaction was not in being at the top, but in getting there, in the enjoyment you get out of scaling the heights? That's something you don't understand, and can't understand until you've gone through it yourself. You're still at the state of unlimited illusions, when a good, strong pair of legs makes the hardest road look short, and you've such a mighty appetite for glory that the tiniest crumb of success tastes delightfully sweet. You're prepared for a feast, you're going to satisfy your ambition at last, you feel it's within reach and you don't care if you give the skin off your back to get it! And then, the heights are scaled, the summits reached, and you've got to stay there. That's when the torture begins; you've drunk your excitement to the dregs and found it all too short and even rather bitter, and you wonder whether it was really worth the struggle. From that point there is no more unknown to explore, no new sensations to experience. Pride has had its brief portion of celebrity; you know that your best has been given and you're surprised it hasn't brought a keener sense of satisfaction. From that moment the horizon starts to empty of all hopes that once attracted you towards it. There's nothing to look forward to but death. But in spite of that you cling on, you don't want to feel you're played out, you persist in trying to produce something, like old men persist in trying to make love, with painful, humiliating results... If only we could have the courage to hang ourselves in front of our last masterpiece!
The Aristocrat The Devil is a gentleman, and asks you down to stay At his little place at What'sitsname (it isn't far away). They say the sport is splendid; there is always something new, And fairy scenes, and fearful feats that none but he can do; He can shoot the feathered cherubs if they fly on the estate, Or fish for Father Neptune with the mermaids for a bait; He scaled amid the staggering stars that precipice, the sky, And blew his trumpet above heaven, and got by mastery The starry crown of God Himself, and shoved it on the shelf; But the Devil is a gentleman, and doesn't brag himself. O blind your eyes and break your heart and hack your hand away, And lose your love and shave your head; but do not go to stay At the little place in What'sitsname where folks are rich and clever; The golden and the goodly house, where things grow worse for ever; There are things you need not know of, though you live and die in vain, There are souls more sick of pleasure than you are sick of pain; There is a game of April Fool that's played behind its door, Where the fool remains for ever and the April comes no more, Where the splendour of the daylight grows drearier than the dark, And life droops like a vulture that once was such a lark: And that is the Blue Devil that once was the Blue Bird; For the Devil is a gentleman, and doesn't keep his word.
No settled family or community has ever called its home place an 'environment.' None has ever called its feeling for its home place 'biocentric' or 'anthropocentric.' None has ever thought of its connection to its home place as 'ecological, ' deep or shallow. The concepts and insights of the ecologists are of great usefulness in our predicament, and we can hardly escape the need to speak of 'ecology' and 'ecosystems.' But the terms themselves are culturally sterile. They come from the juiceless, abstract intellectuality of the universities which was invented to disconnect, displace, and disembody the mind. The real names of the environment are the names of rivers and river valleys; creeks, ridges, and mountains; towns and cities; lakes, woodlands, lanes roads, creatures, and people. And the real name of our connection to this everywhere different and differently named earth is 'work.' We are connected by work even to the places where we don't work, for all places are connected; it is clear by now that we cannot exempt one place from our ruin of another. The name of our proper connection to the earth is 'good work, ' for good work involves much giving of honor. It honors the source of its materials; it honors the place where it is done; it honors the art by which it is done; it honors the thing that it makes and the user of the made thing. Good work is always modestly scaled, for it cannot ignore either the nature of individual places or the differences between places, and it always involves a sort of religious humility, for not everything is known. Good work can be defined only in particularity, for it must be defined a little differently for every one of the places and every one of the workers on the earth. The name of our present society's connection to the earth is 'bad work' - work that is only generally and crudely defined, that enacts a dependence that is ill understood, that enacts no affection and gives no honor. Every one of us is to some extent guilty of this bad work. This guilt does not mean that we must indulge in a lot of breast-beating and confession; it means only that there is much good work to be done by every one of us and that we must begin to do it.
My theme is memory, that winged host that soared about me one grey morning of war-time. These memories, which are my life-for we possess nothing certainly except the past-were always with me. Like the pigeons of St. Mark's, theywere everywhere, under my feet, singly, in pairs, in little honey-voiced congregations, nodding, strutting, winking, rolling the tender feathers of their necks, perching sometimes, if I stood still, on my shoulder or pecking a broken biscuit from between my lips; until, suddenly, the noon gun boomed and in a moment, with a flutter and sweep of wings, the pavement was bare and the whole sky above dark with a tumult of fowl. Thus it was that morning. These memories are the memorials and pledges of the vital hours of a lifetime. These hours of afflatus in the human spirit, the springs of art, are, in their mystery, akin to the epochs of history, when a race which for centuries has lived content, unknown, behind its own frontiers, digging, eating, sleeping, begetting, doing what was requisite for survival and nothing else, will, for a generation or two, stupefy the world; commit all manner of crimes, perhaps; follow the wildest chimeras, go down in the end in agony, but leave behind a record of new heights scaled and new rewards won for all mankind; the vision fades, the soul sickens, and the routine of survival starts again. The human soul enjoys these rare, classic periods, but, apart from them, we are seldom single or unique; we keep company in this world with a hoard of abstractions and reflections and counterfeits of ourselves - the sensual man, the economic man, the man of reason, the beast, the machine and the sleep-walker, and heaven knows what besides, all in our own image, indistinguishable from ourselves to the outward eye. We get borne along, out of sight in the press, unresisting, till we get the chance to drop behind unnoticed, or to dodge down a side street, pause, breathe freely and take our bearings, or to push ahead, out-distance our shadows, lead them a dance, so that when at length they catch up with us, they look at one another askance, knowing we have a secret we shall never share.
Cixi's lack of formal education was more than made up for by her intuitive intelligence, which she liked to use from her earliest years. In 1843, when she was seven, the empire had just finished its first war with the West, the Opium War, which had been started by Britain in reaction to Beijing clamping down on the illegal opium trade conducted by British merchants. China was defeated and had to pay a hefty indemnity. Desperate for funds, Emperor Daoguang (father of Cixi's future husband) held back the traditional presents for his sons' brides - gold necklaces with corals and pearls - and vetoed elaborate banquets for their weddings. New Year and birthday celebrations were scaled down, even cancelled, and minor royal concubines had to subsidise their reduced allowances by selling their embroidery on the market through eunuchs. The emperor himself even went on surprise raids of his concubines' wardrobes, to check whether they were hiding extravagant clothes against his orders. As part of a determined drive to stamp out theft by officials, an investigation was conducted of the state coffer, which revealed that more 'than nine million taels of silver had gone missing. Furious, the emperor ordered all the senior keepers and inspectors of the silver reserve for the previous forty-four years to pay fines to make up the loss - whether or not they were guilty. Cixi's great-grandfather had served as one of the keepers and his share of the fine amounted to 43, 200 taels - a colossal sum, next to which his official salary had been a pittance. As he had died a long time ago, his son, Cixi's grandfather, was obliged to pay half the sum, even though he worked in the Ministry of Punishments and had nothing to do with the state coffer. After three years of futile struggle to raise money, he only managed to hand over 1, 800 taels, and an edict signed by the emperor confined him to prison, only to be released if and when his son, Cixi's father, delivered the balance. The life of the family was turned upside down. Cixi, then eleven years old, had to take in sewing jobs to earn extra money - which she would remember all her life and would later talk about to her ladies-in-waiting in the court. 'As she was the eldest of two daughters and three sons, her father discussed the matter with her, and she rose to the occasion. Her ideas were carefully considered and practical: what possessions to sell, what valuables to pawn, whom to turn to for loans and how to approach them. Finally, the family raised 60 per cent of the sum, enough to get her grandfather out of prison. The young Cixi's contribution to solving the crisis became a family legend, and her father paid her the ultimate compliment: 'This daughter of mine is really more like a son!' Treated like a son, Cixi was able to talk to her father about things that were normally closed areas for women. Inevitably their conversations touched on official business and state affairs, which helped form Cixi's lifelong interest. Being consulted and having her views acted on, she acquired self-confidence and never accepted the com'common assumption that women's brains were inferior to men's. The crisis also helped shape her future method of rule. Having tasted the bitterness of arbitrary punishment, she would make an effort to be fair to her officials.