Whenever I think about ancient cultures nostalgia seizes me. Perhaps this is nothing but envy of the sweet slowness of the history of that time. The era of ancient Egyptian culture lasted for several thousand years; the era of Greek antiquity for almost a thousand. In this respect, a single human life imitates the history of mankind; at first it is plunged into immobile slowness, and then only gradually does it accelerate more and more.
One of the surprises of her unoccupied state was the discovery that time, when it is left to itself and no definite demands are made on it, cannot be trusted to move at any recognized pace. Usually it loiters; but just when one has come to count upon its slowness, it may suddenly break into a wild irrational gallop.
The wide difference between the two characters, the slowness and want of energy of the Spartans as contrasted with the dash and enterprise of their opponents, proved of the greatest service, especially to a maritime empire like Athens. Indeed this was shown by the Syracusans, who were most like the Athenians in character, and also most successful in combating them.
Today, luxury resides in everything that is becoming rare: communion with nature, silence, meditation, slowness rediscovered, the pleasure of living out of step with others, studious idleness, the enjoyment of the major works of the mind""these are all privileges that cannot be bought because they are literally priceless.
Imagine your body becoming that of a stranger. Imagine the sensation of it being not yours, as you discover what it feels like to do this, or to have this happen to you, for the very first time. Imagine it happening with sickening slowness, or with shocking speed, that discovery. And then imagine knowing it has come too late.
You don't have to work for Google, or any of the other firms encouraging staff to pursue personal projects on company time, to use slowness to unlock your creativity. Anyone can do it. Start by clearing space in your schedule for rest, daydreaming and serendipity. Take breaks away from your desk, especially when you get stuck on a problem.
One of the chief inhibitions to human progress arises because of the extreme slowness with which the advances in knowledge become translated into action for the benefit of society as a whole. There is no step more important for the removal of that inhibition than that of providing for intimate contact between the leaders in the fields of pure and applied science.
Robert Andrews Millikan
'In Praise of Slowness' chronicles the global trend towards deceleration that has come to be known as the Slow Movement. Don't worry, though: it is not a Luddite rant. I love speed. Going fast can be fun, liberating and productive. The problem is that our hunger for speed, for cramming more and more into less and less time, has gone too far.
It can be dismaying, all the same, for a novelist to compare the slowness of the writing with the speed of the reading. Novels are read in a matter of days, even hours. A writer may labor for weeks over a particular passage that will have its effect on a reader for an instant - and that effect may be subliminal or barely noticed.
The spark for 'In Praise of Slowness' came when I began reading to my children. Every parent knows that kids like their bedtime stories read at a gentle, meandering pace. But I used to be too fast to slow down with the Brothers Grimm. I would zoom through the classic fairy tales, skipping lines, paragraphs, whole pages.
Consider the blundering anarchic system of the United States the stupidity of some of its lawmakers, the violent reaction, the slowness of its ability to change. Twenty-five key men destroyed could make the Soviet Union stagger, but we could lose our congress, our president, and our general staff and nothing much would have happened. We would go right on. In fact we might be better for it.
My first book, 'In Praise of Slowness,' examines how the world got stuck in fast-forward and chronicles a global trend towards putting on the brakes. That trend is called the Slow movement. 'Slow' in this context does not mean doing everything at a snail's pace. It means doing everything at the right speed.
I saw her sign the register, but her name isn't on it any more. The bellboy says he never saw her. Now they've got me so I'm scared and shaky, like a little kid is of the dark. I want you men to help me. Won't you men help me?' 'We'll help you' - said the lieutenant in charge. Slowly, awfully slowly; I didn't like that slowness - 'if we're able to.' And I knew what he meant; if we find any evidence that your story is true. ("All At Once, No Alice")
But there is something thrilling about the wait; investing your time and energy to imagine and create those characters in your mind's eye and envisage what might happen to them before someone else tells you. It's the slowness I like. Everything today is so rushed and hurried, but I find there is nothing better than relaxing with a good book.' Excerpt From: L. J. Dee. 'Tyler : Book #4 The Hunter Brothers Series.' iBooks. This material may be protected by copyright.
Never assume that the person you are dealing with is weaker or less important than you are. Some people are slow to take offense, which may make you misjudge the thickness of their skin, and fail to worry about insulting them. But should you offend their honor and their pride, they will overwhelm you with a violence that seems sudden and extreme given their slowness to anger. If you want to turn people down, it is best to do so politely and respectfully, even if you feel their request is impudent or their offer ridiculous.
I have studiously tried to avoid ever using the word 'madness' to describe my condition. Now and again, the word slips out, but I hate it. 'Madness' is too glamorous a term to convey what happens to most people who are losing their minds. That word is too exciting, too literary, too interesting in its connotations, to convey the boredom, the slowness, the dreariness, the dampness of depression.
Sin does not always drive us to drink; more often it drives us to exhaustion. Tiredness is equally as debilitating as drunkenness. Burnout is slang for an inner tiredness, a fatigue of our souls. Jesus came to forgive us all of our sins, including the sin of busyness. The problem with growth in the modern church is not the slowness of growth but the rushing of growth.
The most curious social convention of the great age in which we live is the one to the effect that religious opinions should be respected. Its evil effects must be plain enough to everyone. All it accomplishes is (a) to throw a veil of sanctity about ideas that violate every intellectual decency, and (b) to make every theologian a sort of chartered libertine. No doubt it is mainly to blame for the appalling slowness with which really sound notions make their way in the world.
H. L. Mencken
A criminal trial is like a Russian novel: it starts with exasperating slowness as the characters are introduced to a jury, then there are complications in the form of minor witnesses, the protagonist finally appears and contradictions arise to produce drama, and finally as both jury and spectators grow weary and confused the pace quickens, reaching its climax in passionate final argument.
Begin with the soft smelted upturned heart-shaped mouth made for smiling a smile kept for kindness, tenderness, incapable of malice. Am I going too fast for you? The almond eyes see out through their sleepy epicanthic fold. Trusting and calm, if a flicker from slowness, a further flicker from stupidity. Settled in slow-motion beauty, heart-breaking beauty.
The dancer's body is simply the luminous manifestation of the soul. The true dance is an expression of serenity; it is controlled by the profound rhythm of inner emotion. Emotion does not reach the moment of frenzy out of a spurt of action; it broods first, it sleeps like the life in the seed, and it unfolds with a gentle slowness. The Greeks understood the continuing beauty of a movement that mounted, that spread, that ended with a promise of rebirth.
The villages were lighting up, constellations that greeted each other across the dusk. And, at the touch of his finger, his flying-lights flashed back a greeting to them. The earth grew spangled with light signals as each house lit its star, searching the vastness of the night as a lighthouse sweeps the sea. Now every place that sheltered human life was sparkling. And it rejoiced him to enter into this one night with a measured slowness, as into an anchorage.
Antoine de Saint-Exupery
Time seemed to drag with dreamlike slowness, like a knife through cold honey, and the room took on a surreal golden sheen as if I was looking through that same jar of honey. Maybe at that moment, the sun shone just right though the grimy windows, but the woman, the shelves, the jars, everything in the room appeared in tones of gold and sepia, except for the painting behind the counter. From behind the shopkeeper's head, a fluorescent Mary and Jesus glared at me, their cartoon-like faces reproaching me for being there.
I love you as the plant that never blooms but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers; thanks to your love a certain solid fragrence risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body. and: No one can stop the river of your hands, your eyes and their sleepiness, my dearest. You are the trembling of time, which passes between the vertical light and the darkening sky. and: From the stormy archipelagoes I brought my windy accordian, waves of crazy rain, the habitual slowness of natural things: they made up my wild heart.
Childhood is a human water, a water which comes out of the shadows. This childhood in the mists and glimmers, this life in the slowness of limbo gives us a certain layer of births. What a lot of beings we have begun! What a lot of lost springs which have nevertheless, flowed! Reverie toward our past then, reverie looking for childhood seems to bring back lives which which have never taken place, lives which have been imagined. Reverie is a mnemonics of the imagination. In reverie we re-enter into contact with possibilities which destitute has not been able to make use of.
For six days I didn't get up except to make a cup of tea, or fry an egg, or lie in the skinny bath gazing at a cracked ceiling. The days punished me with their slowness, piling up the hours on me, spreading their joylessness about the room. A doctor would have said I was suffering from depression. Everything I have read since suggests this was the case. But when you are in the grip of something like that it doesn't usefully announce itself. No. what happens is you sit in a dark, dark cave, and you wait. If you are lucky there is a pinprick of light, and if you are especially lucky that pinprick will grow larger and larger, until one day the cave appears to slip behind, and just like that you find yourself in daylight and free. This is how it happened for me.
There is a time sometime, and a place where in the perfect stillness of the evening within the sunset serenity we unite in the glow... Blissful paradise divinity, brilliancy glassy deepness, shallowness slow and smooth... We forever are eternal wholeness only intimacy between us... Thorough adoration pleasure deep in souls with melodies slowness as we breathe... skin on skin with tenderness emotions... There is a time sometime, when I dream of you, feel caressing kissing across my eyes and hands... and a place where old memories fade away and I'm with you again locked tight in your embrace, hearing your laughter and seeing jolly smiles upon your face... Music of the reverberating mind waves crashes on the shore of my aching heart... There is a place I'm in a different time sometime... with you in the perfect stillness...
The Northwestern Carpathians, in which I was raised, were a hard place, as unforgiving as the people who lived there, but the Alpine landscape into which Zlee and I were sent that early winter seemed a glimpse of what the surface of the earth looked and felt and acted like when there were no maps or borders, no rifles or artillery, no men or wars to claim possession of land, and snow and rock alone parried in a match of millennial slowness so that time meant nothing, and death meant nothing, for what life there was gave in to the forces of nature surrounding and accepted its fate to play what role was handed down in the sidereal march of seasons capable of crushing in an instant what armies might-millennia later-be foolish enough to assemble on it heights. And yet there we were, ordered to march ourselves, for God, not nature, was with us now, and God would deliver us, in this world and next, when the time came for that.
If thou wilt be well with GOD, and have grace to rule thy life, and come to the joy of love: this name JESUS, fasten it so fast in thy heart that it come never out of thy thought. And when thou speakest to Him, and through custom sayst, JESUS, it shall be in thine ear, joy; in thy mouth, honey; and in thine heart, melody: for men shall think joy to hear that name be named, sweetness to speak it, mirth and song to think it. If thou thinkest (on) JESUS continually, and holdest it firmly, it purges thy sin, and kindles thine heart; it clarifies thy soul, it removes anger and does away slowness. It wounds in love and fulfils charity. It chases the devil, and puts out dread. It opens heaven, and makes a contemplative man. Have JESUS in mind, for that puts all vices and phantoms out from the lover.
Dearest Jessamin, I have not had a letter from you in a month. (You are a terrible daughter.) I blame the slowness of the boats and hate the distance between us. (How could you leave me?) Your cousin Jacabo responded to my inquiries after your well-being with only the vaguest of terms. (I threatened Jacky Boy if he did not update me on your life.) I take this to mean you have seen him regularly and have also forbidden him from updating me on your life in the big city. (Why are you spending your time with him when he is clearly not running in the right circles?) How are your studies? Have you met anyone interesting? (Why have you not given me news of your father?) I suspect you do not write because you have found someone. (Please, please tell me you have found someone.) I know it. (I beg the spirits for it each night.) A mother can feel these things. (I will drag you back to the island and force you into marriage if you do not take care of it yourself.) Please tell me whether he is of a good family and when I can expect happy tidings to share with my friends. (Do not do anything I cannot crow about to the neighbors.) I knew you would not be on your own for long. (Give me grandchildren. Soon.) Dear Henry has asked after you, though, so if you are lonely you know you have many options here. (I pestered Henry until he finally asked after you and took it as a sign he still wishes to marry you.) Write me soon or I will perish for want of daughterly affection. (You are a terrible daughter.) All my love, (All my love, ) Mama
From the end of the World War twenty-one years ago, this country, like many others, went through a phase of having large groups of people carried away by some emotion-some alluring, attractive, even speciously inspiring, public presentation of a nostrum, a cure-all. Many Americans lost their heads because several plausible fellows lost theirs in expounding schemes to end barbarity, to give weekly handouts to people, to give everybody a better job-or, more modestly, for example, to put a chicken or two in every pot-all by adoption of some new financial plan or some new social system. And all of them burst like bubbles. Some proponents of nostrums were honest and sincere, others-too many of them-were seekers of personal power; still others saw a chance to get rich on the dimes and quarters of the poorer people in our population. All of them, perhaps unconsciously, were capitalizing on the fact that the democratic form of Government works slowly. There always exists in a democratic society a large group which, quite naturally, champs at the bit over the slowness of democracy; and that is why it is right for us who believe in democracy to keep the democratic processes progressive-in other words, moving forward with the advances in civilization. That is why it is dangerous for democracy to stop moving forward because any period of stagnation increases the numbers of those who demand action and action now.
Franklin D. Roosevelt