Ugliness, squalor are breeding grounds for revolution. Beauty is conducive to tranquillity, happiness. Beautifying of homes and places of worship began with the dawn of civilization. Beautifying of workplaces is only in its infancy. Yet, since men normally spend more than half of their waking hours at work, surely it is important that adequate attention be devoted to elevating their working environment, whether office or factory, foundry or machine shop, mine or warehouse. Beautiful surroundings subtly encourage beautiful living. Drab surroundings, bad air, bad light, evoke bad reactions.
B. C. Forbes
Everybody remembers numbers and computers remember numbers. People remember procedures and computers certainly remember procedures. But the other thing that's still important is that your perception as a human is affected subtly by all this stuff that you can't quite articulate. You run your life according to all this stuff that's happened to you. All of your memories affect everything you do whereas with a computer, there's adaptive software and things, but it's more literal.
An idol is something that we look to for things that only God can give. Idolatry functions widely inside religious communities when doctrinal truth is elevated to the position of a false god. This occurs when people rely on the rightness of their doctrine for their standing with God rather than on God himself and his grace. It is a subtly but deadly mistake. The sign that you have slipped into this form of self-justification is that you become what the book of Proverbs calls a 'scoffer'.
Most do not fully see this truth that life is difficult. Instead they moan more or less incessantly, noisily or subtly, about the enormity of their problems, their burdens, and their difficulties as if life were generally easy, as if life should be easy. They voice their belief, noisily or subtly, that their difficulties represent a unique kind of affliction that should not be and that has somehow been especially visited upon them, or else upon their families, their tribe, their class, their nation, their race or even their species, and not upon others.
M. Scott Peck
I sometimes wonder if the hand is not more sensitive to the beauties of sculpture than the eye. I should think the wonderful rhythmical flow of lines and curves could be more subtly felt than seen. Be this as it may, I know that I can feel the heart-throbs of the ancient Greeks in their marble gods and goddesses.
Chess, which exists predominantly in two dimensions, is one of the world's most difficult games. Three-dimensional chess is an invitation to insanity. But human relationships, even of the simplest order, are like a kind of four-dimensional chess, a game whose pieces and positions change subtly and inexorably between moves, whose players stare dumbly while their powerful positions deteriorate into hopeless predicaments and while improbable combinations suddenly become inevitable. To make matters worse, some games are open to any number of players, and all sides are expected to win.
As women glide from their twenties to thirties, Shazzer argues, the balance of power subtly shifts. Even the most outrageous minxes lose their nerve, wrestling with the first twinges of existential angst: fears of dying alone and being found three weeks later half-eaten by an Alsatian.
This element of surprise or mystery - the detective element as it is sometimes rather emptily called - is of great importance in a plot. It occurs through a suspension of the time-sequence; a mystery is a pocket in time, and it occurs crudely, as in "Why did the queen die?" and more subtly in half-explained gestures and words, the true meaning of which only dawns pages ahead. Mystery is essential to plot, and cannot be appreciated without intelligence. ... To appreciate a mystery, part of the mind must be left behind, brooding, while the other part goes marching on.
E. M. Forster
It's remarkable - most remarkable, the way these people manage, from time to time, a tragedy or a near-tragedy to break the even tenor of their ways,' said Mr. Tingley, in a tone of half-humorous superiority, by which he considered that he distinguished himself, subtly and inoffensively, from 'these people.
I have defended Syria for a long time, so I was admiring Syria, I have admired your president very much. I hope at some point to be able to meet him and shake his hand. I think he is the greatest man in a very difficult period, and especially with what's going on right now, in terms of Lebanon and its relations with Syria. But absolutely, even from my perspective, and it shows you how the Zionist media around the world controls and affects all of us. Even those of us who are aware of it - it's subtly affecting.
Do you remember what Darwin says about music? He claims that the power of producing and appreciating it existed among the human race long before the power of speech was arrived at. Perhaps that is why we are so subtly influenced by it. There are vague memories in our souls of those misty centuries when the world was in its childhood.' That's a rather broad idea,' I remarked. One's ideas must be as broad as Nature if they are to interpret Nature,' he answered.
Arthur Conan Doyle
Imagine what it must be like for teenagers who don't feel they have room to breathe in their own homes. If you are a parent reading this book, you care about your child. If she is quirky, unusual, or nonconformist, ask yourself whether you are doing everything you can to nurture her unusual interests, style, or skills, or whether instead you are directly or subtly pushing her to hide them.
Unfortunately, mainstream news has become infotainment, sharing more in common with the entertainment industry than with traditional journalism. Gossip, characterizations and injections of drama are subtly infused with facts, altering the truth in a similar way to how dramatists twist true stories to create greater excitement.
A veteran, calm and assured, he pauses for a well-measured moment in the doorway of the office and then, boldly, clearly, with the subtly modulated British intonation which his public demands of him, speaks his opening line, 'Good morning!' And the three secretaries - each of them a charming and accomplished actress in her own chosen style - recognise him instantly, without even a flicker of doubt, and reply 'Good morning' to him. (There is something religious here, like responses in church; a reaffirmation of faith in the basic American dogma, that it is, always, a Good Morning. Good, despite the Russians and their rockets, and all the ills and worries of the flesh. For of course we know, don't we, that the Russians and the worries are not real? They can be unsought and made to vanish. And therefore the morning can ve made to be good. Very well then, it is good.
I mean that the reason God seems to act in ways that make no sense to us is that our perceptions are wrong. Our expectations are subtly twisted. We long for things that harm us and run from the things that grow and heal us. We think good is bad and bad is good. God acts rightly, but to us, it seems confusing. Or sometimes plain wrong.
Was it wisdom? Was it knowledge? Was it, once more, the deceptiveness of beauty, so that all one's perceptions, half-way to truth, were tangled in a golden mesh? Or did she lock up within her some secret which certainly Lily Briscoe believed people must have for the world to go on at all? Every one could not be as helter skelter, hand to mouth as she was. But if they knew, could they tell one what they knew? Sitting on the floor with her arms round Mrs. Ramsay's knees, close as she could get, smiling to think that Mrs. Ramsay would never know the reason of that pressure, she imagined how in the chambers of the mind and heart of the woman who was, physically, touching her, were stood, like the treasures in the tombs of kings, tablets bearing sacred inscriptions, which if one could spell them out, would teach one everything, but they would never be offered openly, never made public. What art was there, known to love or cunning, by which one pressed through into those secret chambers? What device for becoming, like waters poured into one jar, inextricably the same, one with the object one adored? Could the body achieve, or the mind, subtly mingling in the intricate passages of the brain? or the heart? Could loving, as people called it, make her and Mrs. Ramsay one? for it was not knowledge but unity that she desired, not inscriptions on tablets, nothing that could be written in any language known to men, but intimacy itself, which is knowledge, she had thought, leaning her head on Mrs. Ramsay's knee.
To defend my fear of sudden change, I chose to believe that life was incremental, that the tiny decisions you make every day determine your fate, that your job is to captain an enormous ship subtly into ever-clearer waters. But that's not how it works at all. Life occurs in moments. You get into college. You propose. You get the job. You get cancer. You get fired. She leaves you... Because I was born in a stable country at a stable time, I falsely extrapolated that change is incremental. But if you zoom out just a little bit, you see that life is soccer, not basketball. It's revolution, invention, war. It's big bangs, exploding stars, asteroids killing the dinosaurs. Which means that all the action is in the risk taking, whether I want it to be or not.
I see no justice in that plan." "Who said, " lashed out Isaac Penn, "that you, a man, can always perceive justice? Who said that justice is what you imagine? Can you be sure that you know it when you see it, that you will live long enough to recognize the decisive thunder of its occurrence, that it can be manifest within a generation, within ten generations, within the entire span of human existence? What you are talking about is common sense, not justice. Justice is higher and not as easy to understand - until it presents itself in unmistakable splendor. The design of which I speak is far above our understanding. But we can sometimes feel its presence. "No choreographer, no architect, engineer, or painter could plan more thoroughly and subtly. Every action and every scene has its purpose. And the less power one has, the closer he is to the great waves that sweep through all things, patiently preparing them for the approach of a future signified not by simple human equity (a child could think of that), but by luminous and surprising connections that we have not imagined, by illustrations terrifying and benevolent - a golden age that will show not what we wish, but some bare awkward truth upon which rests everything that ever was and everything that ever will be. There is justice in the world, Peter Lake, but it cannot be had without mystery.
It's difficult to spend time in any carnival or amusement park and not realize that a repressed fear of death may be the one emotion that is constant in the human heart even if, most of the time, it is confined to the unconscious as we go about our business. Thrill rides offer us a chance to acknowledge our ever-present dread, to release the tension that arises from repression of it, and to subtly delude ourselves with the illusion of invulnerability that surviving the Big Drop can provide.
The physical sciences, good and innocent in themselves, had already... begun to be warped, had been subtly manoeuvred in a certain direction. Despair of objective truth had been increasingly insinuated into the scientists; indifference to it, and a concentration upon mere power, had been the result... The very experiences of the dissecting room and the pathological laboratory were breeding a conviction that the stifling of all deep-set repugnances was the first essential for progress.
Historians like a quiet life, and usually they get it. For the most part, history moves at a deliberate pace, working its changes subtly and incrementally. Nations and their institutions harden into shape or crumble away like sediment carried by the flow of a sluggish river. English history in particular seems the work of a temperate community, seldom shaken by convulsions. But there are moments when history is unsubtle; when change arrives in a violent rush, decisive, bloody, traumatic; as a truck-load of trouble, wiping out everything that gives a culture its bearings - custom, language, law, loyalty. 1066 was one of those moments.
He wasn't the type for displays of affection, either verbal or not. He was disgusted by couples that made out in the hallways between classes, and got annoyed at even the slightest sappy moments in movies. But I knew he cared about me: he just conveyed it more subtly, as concise with expressing this emotion as he was with everything else. It was in the way he'd put his hand on the small of my back, for instance, or how he'd smile at me when I said something that surprised him. Once I might have wanted more, but I'd come around to his way of thinking in the time we'd been together. And we were together, all the time. So he didn't have to prove how he felt about me. Like so much else, I should just know.
I began to see that the stronger a therapy emphasized feelings, self-esteem, and self-confidence, the more dependent the therapist was upon his providing for the patient ongoing, unconditional, positive regard. The more self-esteem was the end, the more the means, in the form of the patient's efforts, had to appear blameless in the face of failure. In this paradigm, accuracy and comparison must continually be sacrificed to acceptance and compassion; which often results in the escalation of bizarre behavior and bizarre diagnoses. The bizarre behavior results from us taking credit for everything that is positive and assigning blame elsewhere for anything negative. Because of this skewed positive-feedback loop between our judged actions and our beliefs, we systematically become more and more adapted to ourselves, our feelings, and our inaccurate solitary thinking; and less and less adapted to the environment that we share with our fellows. The resultant behavior, such as crying, depression, displays of temper, high-risk behavior, or romantic ventures, or abandonment of personal responsibilities, which seem either compulsory, necessary, or intelligent to us, will begin to appear more and more irrational to others. The bizarre diagnoses occur because, in some cases, if a 'cause disease' (excuse from blame) does not exist, it has to be 'discovered' (invented). Psychiatry has expanded its diagnoses of mental disease every year to include 'illnesses' like kleptomania and frotteurism [now frotteuristic disorder in the DSM-V]. (Do you know what frotteurism is? It is a mental disorder that causes people, usually men, to surreptitiously fondle women's breasts or genitals in crowded situations such as elevators and subways.) The problem with the escalation of these kinds of diagnoses is that either we can become so adapted to our thinking and feelings instead of our environment that we will become dissociated from the whole idea that we have a problem at all; or at least, the more we become blameless, the more we become helpless in the face of our problems, thinking our problems need to be 'fixed' by outside help before we can move forward on our own. For 2, 000 years of Western culture our problems existed in the human power struggle constantly being waged between our principles and our primal impulses. In the last fifty years we have unprincipled ourselves and become what I call 'psychologized.' Now the power struggle is between the 'expert' and the 'disorder.' Since the rise of psychiatry and psychology as the moral compass, we don't talk about moral imperatives anymore, we talk about coping mechanisms. We are not living our lives by principles so much as we are living our lives by mental health diagnoses. This is not working because it very subtly undermines our solid sense of self.
I noticed Xander had subtly adjusted his posture. He slouched slightly to the side, let his head hang, and then looked up through his bangs to gaze at something in the middle distance. Uber James Dean. Xander managed to pull it off as if he was looking at nothing, just having deep thoughts about the far away adventures he would be having if he wasn't stuck waiting for a flowered suitcase at Hopkins International. I casually let my eyes slide across the room. There had to be cute girls somewhere close at hand. Otherwise Xander wouldn't have broken out his middle distance gazing Tyrone Power eyes.
Do you remember what Darwin says about music? He claims that the power of producing and appreciating it existed among the human race long before the power of speech was arrived at. Perhaps that is why we are so subtly influenced by it. There are vague memories in our souls of those misty centuries when the world was in its childhood.' That's a rather broad idea, ' I remarked. One's ideas must be as broad as Nature if they are to interpret Nature, ' he answered.
Arthur Conan Doyle
The effect on Lucy was not bad, for the faint seemed to merge subtly into the narcotic sleep. It was with a feeling of personal pride that I could see a faint tinge of colour steal back into the pallid cheeks and lips. No man knows, till he experiences it, what it is to feel his own lifeblood drawn away into the veins of the woman he loves. The Professor watched me critically. "That will do, " he said. "Already?" I remonstrated. "You took a great deal more from Art." To which he smiled a sad sort of smile as he replied, "He is her lover, her fiance. You have work, much work to do for her and for others, and the present will suffice.
And just like that, something inside shifted very subtly, so that all the empty spaces in him suddenly disappeared, so that his breath timed to hers, so that his blood sang. This is why there was music, he realized. There were some feelings that just didn't have words big enough to describe them.
She logged in and read a few of her old posts, smiling at the issues she had raged about and shaking her head at how some of the rants now seemed pretentious and judgmental. She had grown so much without even realizing she had. Mythili typed out the draft, spicing it up subtly and after a last read, she published it. Admiring the brand new post on her main page, she realized she missed writing. She had barely written anything since her last by-line. Typing this out, she felt like she was back with a long-lost friend who understood her. It was like snuggling up in a warm blanket when a thunderstorm raged outside.
Shweta Ganesh Kumar
Half of me is filled with bursting words and half of me is painfully shy. I crave solitude yet also crave people. I want to pour life and love into everything yet also nurture my self-care and go gently. I want to live within the rush of primal, intuitive decision, yet also wish to sit and contemplate. This is the messiness of life - that we all carry multitudes, so must sit with the shifts. We are complicated creatures, and ultimately, the balance comes from this understanding. Be water. Flowing, flexible and soft. Subtly powerful and open. Wild and serene. Able to accept all changes, yet still led by the pull of steady tides. It is enough.
Life is a valuable and unique opportunity to discover who you are. But it seems as soon as you near answering that age-old question, something unexpected always happens to alter your course. And who it is you thought you were suddenly changes. Then comes the frustrating realization that no matter how long life endures, no matter how many experiences are muddled through in this existence, you may never really be able to answer the question... Who am I? Because the answer, like the seasons, constantly, subtly, inevitably changes. And who it is you are today, is not the same person you will be tomorrow.
Richelle E. Goodrich
Patience is an ever present alternative to the mind's endemic restlessness and impatience. Scratch the surface of impatience and what you will find lying beneath it, subtly or not so subtly, is anger. It's the strong energy of not wanting things to be the way they are and blaming someone (often yourself) or something for it. This doesn't mean you can't hurry when you have to. It is possible even to hurry patiently, mindfully, moving fast because you have chosen to.
What infinite heart's-ease Must kings neglect, that private men enjoy! And what have kings, that privates have not too, Save ceremony, save general ceremony? And what art thou, thou idle ceremony? What kind of god art thou, that suffer'st more Of mortal griefs than do thy worshippers? What are thy rents? what are thy comings in? O ceremony, show me but thy worth! What is thy soul of adoration? Art thou aught else but place, degree and form, Creating awe and fear in other men? Wherein thou art less happy being fear'd Than they in fearing. What drink'st thou oft, instead of homage sweet, But poison'd flattery? O, be sick, great greatness, And bid thy ceremony give thee cure! Think'st thou the fiery fever will go out With titles blown from adulation? Will it give place to flexure and low bending? Canst thou, when thou command'st the beggar's knee, Command the health of it? No, thou proud dream, That play'st so subtly with a king's repose; I am a king that find thee, and I know 'Tis not the balm, the sceptre and the ball, The sword, the mace, the crown imperial, The intertissued robe of gold and pearl, The farced title running 'fore the king, The throne he sits on, nor the tide of pomp That beats upon the high shore of this world, No, not all these, thrice-gorgeous ceremony, Not all these, laid in bed majestical, Can sleep so soundly as the wretched slave, Who with a body fill'd and vacant mind Gets him to rest, cramm'd with distressful bread; Never sees horrid night, the child of hell, But, like a lackey, from the rise to set Sweats in the eye of Phoebus and all night Sleeps in Elysium; next day after dawn, Doth rise and help Hyperion to his horse, And follows so the ever-running year, With profitable labour, to his grave: And, but for ceremony, such a wretch, Winding up days with toil and nights with sleep, Had the fore-hand and vantage of a king. The slave, a member of the country's peace, Enjoys it; but in gross brain little wots What watch the king keeps to maintain the peace, Whose hours the peasant best advantages.
To say exactly what one means, even to one's own private satisfaction, is difficult. To say exactly what one means and to involve another person is harder still. Communication between you and me relies on assumptions, associations, commonalities and a kind of agreed shorthand, which no-one could precisely define but which everyone would admit exists. That is one reason why it is an effort to have a proper conversation in a foreign language. Even if I am quite fluent, even if I understand the dictionary definitions of words and phrases, I cannot rely on a shorthand with the other party, whose habit of mind is subtly different from my own. Nevertheless, all of us know of times when we have not been able to communicate in words a deep emotion and yet we know we have been understood. This can happen in the most foreign of foreign parts and it can happen in our own homes. It would seem that for most of us, most of the time, communication depends on more than words.
No critic and advocate of immutability has ever once managed properly or even marginally to outwit the English language's capacity for foxy and relentlessly slippery flexibility. For English is a language that simply cannot be fixed, not can its use ever be absolutely laid down. It changes constantly; it grows with an almost exponential joy. It evolves eternally; its words alter their senses and their meanings subtly, slowly, or speedily according to fashion and need.
Too often there is this sinister greed that pulls at my coattails, subtly whispering in the ear of my soul that it is within my rights to tuck away a few dark trinkets to toy with when the tedium of righteous living gets a bit boring. But God would suggest that I empty my pockets.
Craig D. Lounsbrough
You maintain hope for humanity as an infinite skeptic of gossip and slander. In all mankind's desires for entertainment and exaggeration and sensationalism, when it comes to gossip, the individual always sounds worse than he really is. This is why adhering to gossip subtly affects the mental state of the listener - he goes on holding shady opinions regardless of where the realities of their lights and darknesses may stand.
Earlier in this book I noted that one of my favorite sayings is 'You get what you tolerate.' This applies in spades to your relationships. Failing to speak up about something carries the implication that you are OK with it-that you are prepared to continue tolerating it. As a companion saying goes, 'Silence means consent.' If you tolerate snide or offensive remarks from your boss or colleague, the remarks will continue. If you tolerate your spouse's lack of consideration for your feelings, it will continue. If you tolerate the disregard of people who regularly turn up late for meetings or social engagements, they will continue to keep you cooling your heels. If you tolerate your child's lack of respect, you will continue to get no respect. Each time you tolerate a behavior, you are subtly teaching that person that it is OK to treat you that way.
Walking on the land or digging in the fine soil I am intensely aware that time quivers slightly, changes occurring in imperceptible and minute ways, accumulating so subtly that they seem not to exist. Yet the tiny shifts in everything-cell replication, the rain of dust motes, lengthening hair, wind-pushed rocks-press inexorably on and on.
The plane banked, and he pressed his face against the cold window. The ocean tilted up to meet him, its dark surface studded with points of light that looked like constellations, fallen stars. The tourist sitting next to him asked him what they were. Nathan explained that the bright lights marked the boundaries of the ocean cemeteries. The lights that were fainter were memory buoys. They were the equivalent of tombstones on land: they marked the actual graves. While he was talking he noticed scratch-marks on the water, hundreds of white gashes, and suddenly the captain's voice, crackling over the intercom, interrupted him. The ships they could see on the right side of the aircraft were returning from a rehearsal for the service of remembrance that was held on the ocean every year. Towards the end of the week, in case they hadn't realised, a unique festival was due to take place in Moon Beach. It was known as the Day of the Dead... When he was young, it had been one of the days he most looked forward to. Yvonne would come and stay, and she'd always bring a fish with her, a huge fish freshly caught on the ocean, and she'd gut it on the kitchen table. Fish should be eaten, she'd said, because fish were the guardians of the soul, and she was so powerful in her belief that nobody dared to disagree. He remembered how the fish lay gaping on its bed of newspaper, the flesh dark-red and subtly ribbed where it was split in half, and Yvonne with her sleeves rolled back and her wrists dipped in blood that smelt of tin. It was a day that abounded in peculiar traditions. Pass any candy store in the city and there'd be marzipan skulls and sugar fish and little white chocolate bones for 5 cents each. Pass any bakery and you'd see cakes slathered in blue icing, cakes sprinkled with sea-salt.If you made a Day of the Dead cake at home you always hid a coin in it, and the person who found it was supposed to live forever. Once, when she was four, Georgia had swallowed the coin and almost choked. It was still one of her favourite stories about herself. In the afternoon, there'd be costume parties. You dressed up as Lazarus or Frankenstein, or you went as one of your dead relations. Or, if you couldn't think of anything else, you just wore something blue because that was the colour you went when you were buried at the bottom of the ocean. And everywhere there were bowls of candy and slices of special home-made Day of the Dead cake. Nobody's mother ever got it right. You always had to spit it out and shove it down the back of some chair. Later, when it grew dark, a fleet of ships would set sail for the ocean cemeteries, and the remembrance service would be held. Lying awake in his room, he'd imagine the boats rocking the the priest's voice pushed and pulled by the wind. And then, later still, after the boats had gone, the dead would rise from the ocean bed and walk on the water. They gathered the flowers that had been left as offerings, they blew the floating candles out. Smoke that smelt of churches poured from the wicks, drifted over the slowly heaving ocean, hid their feet. It was a night of strange occurrences. It was the night that everyone was Jesus... Thousands drove in for the celebrations. All Friday night the streets would be packed with people dressed head to toe in blue. Sometimes they painted their hands and faces too. Sometimes they dyed their hair. That was what you did in Moon Beach. Turned blue once a year. And then, sooner or later, you turned blue forever.
I, being born a woman and distressed By all the needs and notions of my kind, Am urged by your propinquity to find Your person fair, and feel a certain zest To bear your body's weight upon my breast; So subtly is the fume of life designed, To clarify the pulse and cloud the mind, And leave me once again undone, possessed. Think not for this, however, the poor treason Of my stout blood against my staggering brain, I shall remember you with love, or season My scorn with pity, - let me make it plain: I find this frenzy insufficient reason For conversation when we meet again.
Edna St. Vincent Millay
Are we not, all of us, in some way, damaged mirrors? Are we not constantly engaged in focusing the light of thought-memories out of the depths of human experience-onto the photographic plate of each moment? The image captured in this instant is a snapshot of all eternity, subtly altered by our own brokenness. And who's to say that the image formed by a damaged mirror is not a truer picture of the universe?
The Marquis de V... - whose falsetto voice and little watery eyes I have always detested - was saying to me with a wicked smile: 'Then again, the master gymnast might break his neck at any moment. What he is doing now is very dangerous, my dear, and the pleasure you take in his performance is the little frisson that danger affords you. Wouldn't it be thrilling, if his sweaty hand failed to grip the bar? The velocity acquired by his rotation about the bar would break his spine quite cleanly, and perhaps a little of the cervical matter might spurt out as far as this! It would be most sensational, and you would have a rare emotion to add to the field of your experience - for you collect emotions, don't you? What a pretty stew of terrors that man in tights stirs up in us! 'Admit that you almost wish that he will fall! Me too. Many others in the auditorium are in the same state of attention and anguish. That is the horrible instinct of a crowd confronted with a spectacle which awakens in it the ideas of lust and death. Those two agreeable companions always travel together! Take it from me that at the very same moment - see, the man is now holding on to the bar by his fingertips alone - at the very same moment, a good number of the women in these boxes are ardently lusting after that man, not so much for his beauty as for the danger he courts.' The voice subtly changed its tone, suddenly becoming more interested. 'You have singularly pale eyes this evening, my dear Freneuse. You ought to give up bromides and take valerian instead. You have a charming and curious soul, but you must take command of its changes. You are too ardently and too obviously covetous, this evening, of the death - or at least the fall - of that man.' I did not reply. The Marquis de V... was quite right. The madness of murder had taken hold of me again; the spectacle had me in its hallucinatory grip. Straitened by a penetrating and delirious anguish, I yearned for that man to fall. There are appalling depths of cruelty within me.
In some ways the operation of the feminine stereotype is so obvious and for many women entirely unattainable, that it can be easily reacted against. It takes a great deal of courage and independence to decide to design your own image instead of the one that society rewards, but it gets easier as you go along. Of course, a woman who goes her own way will find her conditioning is ineradicable, but she at least can recognize its operation and choose to counteract it, whereas a man might find that he was being more subtly deluded.
Once we're able to see this world as an illusion and a phantasm, then we can see everything that happens to us as a dream, as something that pretended to exist while we were sleeping. And we will become subtly and profoundly indifferent towards all of life's setbacks and calamities. Those who die turned a corner, which is why we've stopped seeing them; those who suffer pass before us like a nightmare, if we feel, or like an unpleasant daydream, if we think. And even our own suffering won't be more than this nothingness.
I take the seashell from my jeans pocket and rub my fingers across its silken, indented surface, shallow as my own open hand. This chalice, subtly shaped by some divine intelligence to allow water to flow in and out with ease, is what I aspire to become: a vessel through which feelings can pour in and spill right out again, without all the grasping and holding that obstructs the flow. Can I be as serene and simple as this bleached shell, rubbed smooth by wind and water, receiving and releasing, filling and emptying and filling again, eternally receptive to the currents of life?
She does not want to feel even the faintest temptation to call his mobile number, as she had done obsessively for the first year after his death so she could hear his voice on the answering service. Most days now his loss is a part of her, an awkward weight she carries around, invisible to everyone else, subtly altering the way she moves through the day. But today, the Anniversary of the day he died, is a day when all bets are off.
One of my patients told me that when she tried to tell her story people often interrupted her to tell her that they once had something just like that happen to them. Subtly her pain became a story about themselves. Eventually she stopped talking to most people. It was just too lonely. We connect through listening. When we interrupt what someone is saying to let them know that we understand, we move the focus of attention to ourselves. When we listen, they know we care. Many people with cancer talk about the relief of having someone just listen.
Rachel Naomi Remen
You cannot do everything you want with the 3D camera, it's too big, and the digital quality of those cameras is a little bit limiting. With film, you have a lot more subtly, like with highlights and color. In terms of sharpness they (both formats) are very close; but in terms of nuance, of color and contrast, film is far superior.
In our usual mind state, we are continually activating the process that in Buddhist terminology is known as 'bhava,' which literally means 'becoming.' In this space of becoming, we are subtly leaning forward into the future, trying to have security based on feeling that we can hold on, we can try to keep things from changing.
It is easy to forget how mysterious and mighty stories are. They do their work in silence, invisibly. They work with all the internal materials of your mind and self. They become part of you while changing you. Beware the stories you read or tell; subtly, at night, beneath the waters of consciousness, they are altering your world.
Nationalism has two fatal charms for its devotees: It presupposes local self-sufficiency, which is a pleasant and desirable condition, and it suggests, very subtly, a certain personal superiority by reason of one's belonging to a place which is definable and familiar, as against a place that is strange, remote.
E. B. White
It was as if thousands and thousands of little roots and threads of consciousness in him and her had grown together into a tangled mass, till they could crowd no more, and the plant was dying. Now quietly, subtly, she was unravelling the tangle of his consciousness and hers, breaking the threads gently, one by one, with patience and impatience to get clear.
D. H. Lawrence
Mid-summer ... when the alchemy of Nature transmutes the sylvan landscape to one vivid and almost homogeneous mass of green; when the senses are well-nigh intoxicated with the surging seas of moist verdure and the subtly indefinable odours of the soil and the vegetation. In such surroundings the mind loses its perspective; time and space become trivial and unreal, and echoes of a forgotten prehistoric past beat insistently upon the enthralled consciousness.
H. P. Lovecraft
Mom is losing, no doubt, because our vegetables have come to lack two features of interest: nutrition and flavor. Storage and transport take predictable tolls on the volatile plant compounds that subtly add up to taste and food value. Breeding to increase shelf life also has tended to decrease palatability. Bizarre as it seems, we've accepted a tradeoff that amounts to: "Give me every vegetable in every season, even if it tastes like a cardboard picture of its former self."