One of the painfully sobering realizations that come from reading history is the utter incompetence that is possible among leaders of whole nations and empires - and the blind faith that such leaders can nevertheless inspire among the people who are enthralled by their words or their posturing.
Here in Bosnia I had already seen several cases of rheumatic fever and a case we thought was miliary tuberculosis, diseases now rare in America. It was sobering to think that the mundane process of vaccinating these children might ultimately save more lives than any UN-brokered peace treaty.
The kingdom of heaven and the kingdom of God on the earth will be combined together at Christ's coming - and that time is not far distant. How I wish we could get the vision of this work, the genius of it, and realize the nearness of that great event. I am sure it would have a sobering effect upon us if we realized what is before us.
Gordon B. Hinckley
We know a great deal, but our ignorance is sobering and boundless. With each step forward, with each problem which we solve, we not only discover new and unsolved problems, but we also discover that where we believed that we were standing on firm and safe ground, all things are, in truth, insecure and in a state of flux.
It seems, in fact, that the more advanced a society is, the greater will be its interest in ruined things, for it will see in them a redemptively sobering reminder of the fragility of its own achievements. Ruins pose a direct challenge to our concern with power and rank, with bustle and fame. They puncture the inflated folly of our exhaustive and frenetic pursuit of wealth.
Alain de Botton
While most of our suffering is self- inflicted, some is caused by or permitted by God. This sobering reality calls for deep submissiveness, especially when God does not remove the cup from us. In such circumstances, when reminded about the premortal shouting for joy as this life's plan was unfolded (Job 38:7), we can perhaps be pardoned if, in some moments, we wonder what all the shouting was about.
Neal A. Maxwell
Whatever influence you have, it's only for a small amount of time. When Sir Frank (Packer) sold the Daily and Sunday Telegraph to Rupert Murdoch in 1972, I lost my position as women's editor. Suddenly the phones stopped ringing. All the people who said they were my friends, I didn't hear from them. I was only in my 20's, and that was a sobering lesson to learn: how fleeting everything is, and how easily it can be taken away from you. So you never take yourself too seriously, you never think you're too important.
The earth with yellow pearsAnd overgrown with roses wildUpon the pond is bent,And swans divine,With kisses drunkYou drop your headsIn the sublimely sobering water.But where, with winter come, am ITo find, alas, the floweres, and whereThe sunshineAnd the shadow of the world?Cold the walls standAnd the wordless, in the windThe weathercocks are rattling.
I came to the sobering realization that I was not making it out of here alive, no matter what. I was bruised and bloodied in mind and body, surrounded by the most literal interpretation of monsters, and a final nail in the coffin-I was in love with one of them. The love and loss alone would kill me, if not for the mythical creatures standing in front of me, ready to beat love and loss to the punch.- Camille
among married couples the person who actually makes out the mortgage check is likely to be more cautious about spending money than the person who doesn't. There is something sobering about sending away that much money every month in the knowledge that, rain or shine, you'll have to come up with the same amount of money the next month and the month after that.
PERENNIAL wisdom from divine revelation and human experience dictates that all earthly things great or small, beautiful or ugly, good or bad, sad or happy, fool...ish or wise must finally come to an end. It is from this sobering reality that the end of executive rule has finally come for Robert Mugabe who has had his better days after a quarter of a century in power.
Who gets to be the judge of reality? If it was deeply felt, believed, spoken about often or altered your life course, then it was real enough. Faith doesn't get the luxury of all those things one hundred percent of the time, but we call that normal behavior based on a gut feeling.' I said. I looked at his wife and she busted out laughing. Her husband was trying to catch invisible butterflies above his head-dementia. My patients teach me the most sobering of truths: Why wreck his smile. If I could see them, I would want to catch them too.
Shannon L. Alder
It is a sobering fact that the prominence of central banks in this century has coincided with a general tendency towards more inflation, not less. [I]f the overriding objective is price stability, we did better with the nineteenth-century gold standard and passive central banks, with currency boards, or even with 'free banking.' The truly unique power of a central bank, after all, is the power to create money, and ultimately the power to create is the power to destroy.
There would therefore have been all the more delight at the birth of the first son William within less than a year of Margaret's death, tinged with more than a little anxiety, in view of the fateful words hic incepit pestis, 'here began plague', in the burial part of the register three months later. Just how close this dread flea-borne disease was to the Shakespeares can be guaged from the fact that their Henley Street neighbour Roger Green lost four of his children and town clerk Richard Symons three. One estimate suggests that the town lost around two hundred, or about fifteen per cent, of its population during this single outbreak. It is a sobering thought how much the world could have lost at this time by one ill-chanced flea-bite.
I sometimes have moments of such despair, such despair ... Because in those moments I start to think that I will never be capable of beginning to live a real life; because I have already begun to think that I have lost all sense of proportion, all sense of the real and the actual; because, what is more, I have cursed myself; because my nights of fantasy are followed by hideous moments of sobering! And all the time one hears the human crowd swirling and thundering around one in the whirlwind of life, one hears, one sees how people live-that they live in reality, that for them life is not something forbidden, that their lives are not scattered for the winds like dreams or visions but are forever in the process of renewal, forever young, and that no two moments in them are ever the same; while how dreary and monotonous to the point of being vulgar is timorous fantasy, the slave of shadow, of the idea...
I spent the beginning of my focus on activism by doing what most everyone else was doing; blaming other people and institutions. Don't like the war? Let's blame the president, congress, or lobbyists. Don't like ecological disregard? Let's blame this or that corrupt corporation or some regulatory body for poor performance. Don't like being poor and socially immobile? Let's blame government coercion and interference in this free market utopia everyone keeps talking about. The sobering truth of the matter is that the only thing to blame is the dynamic, causal unfolding of system expression itself on the cultural level. In other words, none of us create or do anything in isolation - it's impossible. We are system-bound both physically and psychologically; a continuum. Therefore our view of causality with respect to societal change can only be truly productive if we seek and source the most relevant sociological influences we can and begin to alter those effects from the root causes.
Hyperbolic Suggestion is-as one might infer from the term's literal interpretation-a method of suggestion induced upon the subject (or subjects), in question, through the blatant and immoderate invocation of hyperbole. Simply stated, excessive exaggeration induces a trance upon the recipient, rendering him or her remarkably susceptible to suggestion. Thus, through the use of a multitude of descriptive adjectives and superlatives, neural mechanisms and pathways are overloaded, as canals and bypasses are burrowed into the thick of the gray matter. The dendrites are, through this process, tuned to a predetermined frequency by which the seeds of suggestion can be sown. When this occurs, the subject becomes incredibly compliant to any orders given at a certain tone of voice. In some cases, orders need not be given. The subject's attitudes might well be so affected by the hyperbole as to affect his natural tendencies... Emmanuel silently wondered if there existed a perfect combination of words or phrases that could somehow-as in the case of Hyperbolic Suggestion-subvert even the most stubborn of wills. Then again, maybe it wasn't so much the words as it was how they were spoken: if he achieved exactly the most desirable intonation, rhythm, timing, pitch and pronunciation in his speaking, would his verbal appeals somehow make greater inroads in garnering their consent? There had to be some optimal combination of aspirated consonants, diphthongs, facial expressions and inflection he could somehow affect in order to persuade them effectively. But it seemed that to search for this elusive mixture of ingredients would only prove an onerous task, conceivably of little benefit. In view of this sobering reality, he decided instead to try out a completely different approach from those previous: it occurred to him that his attempts at persuasion might be slightly more effective if he carried them out as dialogues, rather than as monologues.
Where am I?" Magnus croaked. "Nazca." "Oh, so we went on a little trip." "You broke into a man's house, " Catarina said. "You stole a carpet and enchanted it to fly. Then you sped off into the night air. We pursued you on foot." "Ah, " said Magnus. "You were shouting some things." "What things?" "I prefer not to repeat them, " Catarina said. "I also prefer not to remember the time we spent in the desert. It is a mammoth desert, Magnus. Ordinary deserts are quite large. Mammoth deserts are so called because they are larger than ordinary deserts." "Thank you for that interesting and enlightening information, " Magnus croaked. "You told us to leave you in the desert, because you planned to start a new life as a cactus, " Catarina said, her voice flat. "Then you conjured up tiny needles and threw them at us. With pinpoint accuracy." "Well, " he said with dignity. "Considering my highly intoxicated state, you must have been impressed with my aim." "'Impressed' is not the word to use to describe how I felt last night, Magnus." "I thank you for stopping me there, " Magnus said. "It was for the best. You are a true friend. No harm done. Let's say no more about it. Could you possibly fetch me - " "Oh, we couldn't stop you, " Catarina interrupted. "We tried, but you giggled, leaped onto the carpet, and flew away again. You kept saying that you wanted to go to Moquegua." "What did I do in Moquegua?" "You never got there, " Catarina said. "But you were flying about and yelling and trying to, ahem, write messages for us with your carpet in the sky." "We then stopped for a meal, " Catarina said. "You were most insistent that we try a local specialty that you called cuy. We actually had a very pleasant meal, even though you were still very drunk." "I'm sure I must have been sobering up at that point, " Magnus argued. "Magnus, you were trying to flirt with your own plate." "I'm a very open-minded sort of fellow!" "Ragnor is not, " Catarina said. "When he found out that you were feeding us guinea pigs, he hit you over the head with your plate. It broke." "So ended our love, " Magnus said. "Ah, well. It would never have worked between me and the plate anyway. I'm sure the food did me good, Catarina, and you were very good to feed me and put me to bed - " Catarina shook her head."You fell down on the floor. Honestly, we thought it best to leave you sleeping on the ground. We thought you would remain there for some time, but we took our eyes off you for one minute, and then you scuttled off. Ragnor claims he saw you making for the carpet, crawling like a huge demented crab.