We feel something, and reach out for the nearest phrase or hum with which to communicate, but which fails to do justice to what has induced us to do so....We stay on the outside of our impressions, as if staring at them through a frosted window, superficially related to them, yet estranged from whatever has eluded casual definition.
Alain de Botton
Superficially my war was a comfortable exercise in futility carried out in a grand Scottish hotel amongst the bridge players and swillers of easy-come-by whisky. My chest got me out of active service and into guilt, as I wrote two, or is it three of the novels for which I am now acclaimed.
Soaps are great. You learn to work very fast - some say superficially, but that's not really true. You do some very serious character work. I've never had any feelings about a stigma attached to it, and nowadays there seems to be less snobbery about what you do. More and more big names are doing TV and commercials and voiceovers.
We must start with scientific fundamentals, and that means with the data of experiments and not with assumed axioms predicated only upon the misleading nature of that which only superficially seems to be obvious. It is the consensus of great scientists that science is the attempt to set in order the facts of experience.
R. Buckminster Fuller
When one comes to know God and His Son Jesus Christ through the scriptures, the Spirit, and personal revelation, it is impossible to feel anything other than overwhelmed by the attributes so perfectly developed in them and so tentatively and superficially developed in oneself. Even so, we are told to strive to become like them.
Neal A. Maxwell
Superficially it's a problem if homosexuality is genetic - if the difference between people's sexual preferences is genetic - because at least a pure homosexual would be unlikely to reproduce and therefore pass on the genes. So the first question you ask is, is it actually genetic, and the answer is probably to some extent yes.
Helpfiles are traditionally outnumbered by no-help files, which superficially resemble a helpfile in form but not in content because they don't actually tell you anything you don't already know, or they answer every question except the one you're asking, or you open them and a giant animated paper clip leaps out and cheerfully asks where you want to go today. And wikis are worse.
The only sadnesses that are dangerous and unhealthy are the ones that we carry around in public in order to drown them out with the noise; like diseases that are treated superficially and foolishly, they just withdraw and after a short interval break out again all the more terribly; and gather inside us and are life, are life that is unlived, rejected, lost, life that we can die of.
Rainer Maria Rilke
Look in your local Christian Bookstore. You could take most of the books there, throw them into the sea, and not lose anything valuable. The vast majority of them are just placebos that superficially attack trivial problems. During the eras when the church was most holy, Christians had very few books to read, but the ones they did have told them how to have a relationship with God. Most books today don't do that.
John F. MacArthur Jr.
The folkish-minded man, in particular, has the sacred duty, each in his own denomination, of making people stop just talking superficially of God's will, and actually fulfill God's will, and not let God's word be desecrated. For God's will gave men their form, their essence and their abilities. Anyone who destroys His work is declaring war on the Lord's creation, the divine will.
When anger is not trampling roughshod through our nervous system, it is sitting sullenly in some unspecified internal organ. "She's got a lot of anger in her," people will say (it nestles, presumably, somewhere in the gut), or, "He's a deeply angry man" (as opposed, presumably, to a superficially angry one). If anger isn't released, it "turns inward" and metamorphoses into another creature altogether.
The English landscape at its finest - such as I saw this morning - possesses a quality that the landscapes of other nations, however more superficially dramatic, inevitably fail to possess. It is, I believe, a quality that will mark out the English landscape to any objective observer as the most deeply satisfying in the world, and this quality is probably best summed up by the term 'greatness.'
It is a mass language only in the same sense that its baseball slang is born of baseball players. That is, it is a language which is being molded by writers to do delicate things and yet be within the grasp of superficially educated people. It is not a natural growth, much as its proletarian writers would like to think so. But compared with it at its best, English has reached the Alexandrian stage of formalism and decay.
If it is true that an influx of doubt and uncertainty actually marks periods of healthy growth in a science, then evolutionary biology is flourishing today as it seldom has flourished in the past. For biologists collectively are less agreed upon the details of evolutionary mechanics than they were a scant decade ago. Superficially, it seems as if we know less about evolution than we did in 1959, the centennial year of Darwin's on the Origin of Species.
Recognizing that we have the kind of blood we have because we have the kind of kidneys we have, we must acknowledge that our kidneys constitute the major foundation of our philosophical freedom. Only because they work the way they do has it become possible for us to have bones, muscles, glands and brains. Superficially, it might be said that the function of the kidney is to make urine; but in a more considered view one can say that the kidneys make the stuff of philosophy itself.
I have a great affection for people who are intellectually engaged with the world, and who don't treat everything superficially. And I think, when people talk about nerdiness, what they're really talking about is smart people who who are trying to think hard about the world. And I don't think that's an insult, I think that's a great thing.
In many ways... the completeness of biography, the achievement of its professionalization, is an ironic fiction, since no life can ever be known completely, nor would we want to know every fact about an individual. Similarly, no life is ever lived according to aesthetic proportions. The "plot" of a biography is superficially based on the birth, life and death of the subject; "character, " in the vision of the author. Both are as much creations of the biographer, as they are of a novelist. We content ourselves with "authorized fictions.
Ira Bruce Nadel
You know of the disease in Central Africa called sleeping sickness. . . . There also exists a sleeping sickness of the soul. Its most dangerous aspect is that one is unaware of its coming. That is why you have to be careful. As soon as you notice the slightest sign of indifference, the moment you become aware of the loss of a certain seriousness, of longing, of enthusiasm and zest, take it as a warning. You should realize your soul suffers if you live superficially.
Reagan 's story of freedom superficially alludes to the Founding Fathers, but its substance comes from the Gilded Age, devised by apologists for the robber barons. It is posed abstractly as the freedom of the individual from government control a Jeffersonian ideal at the roots of our Bill of Rights, to be sure. But what it meant in politics a century later, and still means today, is the freedom to accumulate wealth without social or democratic responsibilities and license to buy the political system right out from everyone else.
I hear the words, the thoughts, the feeling tones, the personal meaning, even the meaning that is below the conscious intent of the speaker. Sometimes too, in a message which superficially is not very important, I hear a deep human cry that lies buried and unknown far below the surface of the person.So I have learned to ask myself, can I hear the sounds and sense the shape of this other person's inner world? Can I resonate to what he is saying so deeply that I sense the meanings he is afraid of, yet would like to communicate, as well as those he knows?
For women to be supplying the soldiery with banners, flannel shirts and other material comforts was, superficially, all of a piece with their ministrations to their menfolk at home. Such contributions to the war effort were socially acceptable because they could be seen as an extension into the military sphere of the traditional female virtues of charity, nurture and needlework. Yet in reality what the women were doing represented the thin end of a far more radical wedge. Consciously or not, these female patriots were staking out a civic role for themselves. And many of them relished it.
Our attitude toward our own culture has recently been characterized by two qualities, braggadocio and petulance. Braggadocio - empty boasting of American power, American virtue, American know-how - has dominated our foreign relations now for some decades. Here at home - within the family, so to speak - our attitude to our culture expresses a superficially different spirit, the spirit of petulance. Never before, perhaps, has a culture been so fragmented into groups, each full of its own virtue, each annoyed and irritated at the others.
Daniel J. Boorstin
Literature is impossible, in exactly this sense: every new generation has so much 'catching up' to do that the real choice that presents itself soon is the following one: one either spends ones entire life just reading all the classics, or one pretends to be 'contemporary and hip' and never reads any of the classics because in order to pretend to be contemporary one has to at least superficially read the works of contemporaries. Hence the dilemma: one either does not care about being fashionable, or one is fashionable and just learns to mimic some knowledge about the classics. As time develops this rift just becomes bigger, because the amount of books written grows and grows to insane proportions. Conclusion: one can only be hip in the future if one does not read at all, which is a phenomenon I am already witnessing in the media.
Perhaps many things inside you have been transformed; perhaps somewhere, someplace deep inside your being, you have undergone important changes while you were sad. The only sadnesses that are dangerous and unhealthy are the ones that we carry around in public in order to drown them out with the noise; like diseases that are treated superficially and foolishly, they just withdraw and after a short interval break out again all the more terribly; and gather inside us and are life, are life that is unlived, rejected, lost, life that we can die of. If only it were possible for us to see farther than our knowledge reaches, and even a little beyond the outworks of our presentiment, perhaps we would bear our sadnesses with greater trust than we have in our joys. For they are the moments when something new has entered us, something unknown; our feelings grow mute in shy embarrassment, everything in us withdraws, a silence arises, and the new experience, which no one knows, stands in the midst of it all and says nothing.
Rainer Maria Rilke
In Transylvania it was memories of the Romanian revolt that stalked the Hungarian aristocratic imagination.. In Galicia it was memories of Tarnow that performed a similar service for the surviving Polish noble families. Both societies shared something of the brittle, sports-obsessed cheerfulness of the British in India - or indeed of Southerners in the pre-1861 United States. These were societies which could resort to any level of violence in support of racial supremacy. Indeed, an interesting global history could be written about the ferocity of a period which seems, very superficially, to be so 'civilized'. Southern white responses to Nat Turner's Slave Rebellion in 1831, with Turner himself flayed, beheaded and quartered, can be linked to the British blowing rebel Indians to pieces from the mouths of cannons in 1857.
For so long, I was stuck in "either or" thinking. Either I had to change myself, or change the world. Either it was his fault or my fault. Either you had to stop acting that way or I had to stop reacting this way. Either there was something wrong with me or something wrong with them. I would fluctuate between both ends of this dynamic. I'd blame myself for some time and do everything I could to change. When that became tiresome, I'd blame the other, doing everything I could to make them change. When the resentment and frustration became too strong, I'd blame myself again. I've learned that it's never either or. It's always both. I've also learned that, because it's always both, there's no such thing as fault. Fault is only something we can ascribe when we see things superficially. When we look deeper, we see multi-layered, complex systems of causes and effects which affect and are affected by all individuals involved. Fault is a useless concept. Responsibility, however, is the most helpful concept of them all. It's not my fault. It's not his or yours or theirs either. But it is all our responsibility. When we come together like this, we don't have to see-saw back and forth, passing on guilt and blame. We can grow. We can evolve. We can build a better world.
Touch" You are already asleep. I lower myself in next to you, my skin slightly numb with the restraint of habits, the patina of self, the black frost of outsideness, so that even unclothed it is a resilient chilly hardness, a superficially malleable, dead rubbery texture. You are a mound of bedclothes, where the cat in sleep braces its paws against your calf through the blankets, and kneads each paw in turn. Meanwhile and slowly I feel a is it my own warmth surfacing or the ferment of your whole body that in darkness beneath the cover is stealing bit by bit to break down that chill. You turn and hold me tightly, do you know who I am or am I your mother or the nearest human being to hold on to in a dreamed pogrom. What I, now loosened, sink into is an old big place, it is there already, for you are already there, and the cat got there before you, yet it is hard to locate. What is more, the place is not found but seeps from our touch in continuous creation, dark enclosing cocoon round ourselves alone, dark wide realm where we walk with everyone.
To be free, you have to examine authority, the whole skeleton of authority, tearing to pieces the whole dirty thing. And that requires energy, actual physical energy, and also it demands psychological energy. By the energy is destroyed, is wasted when one is in conflict. So when there is the understanding of the whole process of conflict, there is the ending of conflict, there is abundance of energy. Then you can proceed tearing the house that you have built throughout the centuries and that has no meaning at all. You know, to destroy is to create. We must destroy, not the buildings, not the social or economic system, - this comes about daily - but the psychological, the unconscious and the rationally, individually, deeply and superficially. We must tear through all that to be utterly defenseless, because you must be defenseless to love and have affection. Then you see and understand ambition, authority, and you begin to see when authority is necessary and at what level. Then there is no authority of learning, no authority of knowledge, no authority of capacity; no authority that function assumes and which becomes status. To understand all authority - of the gurus, of the Masters, and others - requires a very sharp mind, a clear brain, not a muddy brain, not a dull brain.
[The fairy tale] is accused of giving children a false impression of the world they live in. But I think no literature that children could read gives them less of a false impression. I think what profess to be realistic stories for children are far more likely to deceive them. I never expected the real world to be like the fairy tales. I think that I did expect school to be like the school stories. The fantasies did not deceive me: the school stories did. All stories in which children have adventures and successes which are possible, in the sense that they do not break the laws of nature, but almost infinitely improbable, are in more danger than the fairy tales of raising false expectations... This distinction holds for adult reading too. The dangerous fantasy is always superficially realistic. The real victim of wishful reverie does not batten on the Odyssey, The Tempest, or The Worm Ouroboros: he (or she) prefers stories about millionaires, irresistible beauties, posh hotels, palm beaches and bedroom scenes-things that really might happen, that ought to happen, that would have happened if the reader had had a fair chance. For, as I say, there are two kinds of longing. The one is an askesis, a spiritual exercise, and the other is a disease.
It had all begun on the elevated. There was a particular little sea of roots he had grown into the habit of glancing at just as the packed car carrying him homeward lurched around a turn. A dingy, melancholy little world of tar paper, tarred gravel, and smoky brick. Rusty tin chimneys with odd conical hats suggested abandoned listening posts. There was a washed-out advertisement of some ancient patent medicine on the nearest wall. Superficially it was like ten thousand other drab city roofs. But he always saw it around dusk, either in the normal, smoky half-light, or tinged with red by the flat rays of a dirty sunset, or covered by ghostly windblown white sheets of rain-splash, or patched with blackish snow; and it seemed unusually bleak and suggestive, almost beautifully ugly, though in no sense picturesque; dreary but meaningful. Unconsciously it came to symbolize for Catesby Wran certain disagreeable aspects of the frustrated, frightened century in which he lived, the jangled century of hate and heavy industry and Fascist wars. The quick, daily glance into the half darkness became an integral part of his life. Oddly, he never saw it in the morning, for it was then his habit to sit on the other side of the car, his head buried in the paper. One evening toward winter he noticed what seemed to be a shapeless black sack lying on the third roof from the tracks. He did not think about it. It merely registered as an addition to the well-known scene and his memory stored away the impression for further reference. Next evening, however, he decided he had been mistaken in one detail. The object was a roof nearer than he had thought. Its color and texture, and the grimy stains around it, suggested that it was filled with coal dust, which was hardly reasonable. Then, too, the following evening it seemed to have been blown against a rusty ventilator by the wind, which could hardly have happened if it were at all heavy. ("Smoke Ghost")