Quotes are kind of like recycled words. Right?
Laura from the blog with the longest and coolest name ever – The Real Adventures of Becoming (Whatever This Thing is That I Am Presuming is the Authentic and Genuine) Me – nominated me for a quote challenge, around the turn of the century.
It’s about time to pay the piper.
Here’s how it works: I will share with you three quotes, and nominate three bloggers to do the same. I’ll go one better, and share a story with each one. Because I’m a notorious non-follower of rules (except when it comes to the speed limit).
I chose these quotes at random from the hundreds I’ve used at the bottom of posts.
What a quote to lead off.
I love that Gandhi chose to praise the ‘creator.’ This quote illustrates a commonality among religions, something so universal that it needs no specific name. A creator beyond our comprehension could have built all this?
In a world that challenges us and our faith daily, to recognize moments of wonder that defy mere science create a comfort in my soul that’s hard to explain.
It’s in watching my children play, and in smiling at a stranger. It’s in nature and in art and in many cases, it’s hard to distinguish between the two. The soulful expansion Gandhi speaks of allows for even more appreciation of the beauty.
Know that video of the kid who bursts into the room while her dad’s in the middle of the interview on CNN?
She’s my spirit animal! As toddlers, my kids often took the same tact – with a strut, a life-loving energy that we seem to lose over time. I want that back. I capture that at times, on days wearing long shorts and a baseball cap, with stormtroopers in my pockets.
I want to own my entry and go in full-hearted.
It’s also about the ultimate in mindfulness, not wishing you were elsewhere. It’s closing your laptop during a meeting, keeping your phone in your pocket during lunch. It’s modeling for my girls and my team that it’s time to seize the moment.
It’s also about loving those around us.
It’s a peace, a compassion, not just when we’re on the couch with our favorite shows and our favorite people, but in traffic. On a crowded sideline too close to the opponents’ parents. It’s leading with your heart, not your arse.
It’s also giving of ourselves.
It’s carrying your load and helping someone with theirs. It’s listening more than talking, understanding more than posturing. It’s knowing when you leave that spot that you left a piece of you, and took some of that place with you, too.
Admittedly, my area of opportunity is with feelings.
Hurt feelings are tough for me to deal with. It’s strange because I feel compassionate, empathetic. Concerned when people suffer. But I have a grave intolerance for hurt feelings. An expectation of toughness when it comes to the heart.
I do understand how words can become tools and elixirs and fuel, but also weapons.
It’s like when you hammer a nail into a board. You can remove the nail, but you can’t repair, really, the hole that it created. My biggest weakness for harmful words is those that tease and castigate.
“Mean and funny go hand in hand,” I’ve said to my girls before. Yeah.
And yes, it’s true, but I don’t mean it to become the means to an end, that to fire barbs and rips at people and places in the name of entertainment is any way to use words. I make fun of an awful lot, though.
And I see my kids do it.
See, this is one of those uncomfortable portions of writing. I’d rather concentrate on the positive influence of our words, whether in a comment on a blog or a post entirely. In complimenting a stranger or a loved one.
In writing or finding, the words that you struggled to express on your own.
This draws us to quotes, they’re utter recyclable qualities. They give us the chance to get right what we couldn’t get right on our own.
To discover an utterance spoken yesterday or eons ago and say, “yes. What she said.”
And that’s uber green, in a literary sense, if you ask me.
By rule, this challenge should have taken place in three days, with a quote and a nominee to come each day. Here are three three I nominate:
Pat, of New Bloggy Cat
Caitlin, of The Working Explorer
Charlotte, of My Pixie Blog
The rest of the A to Z to this point:
A is for Addiction to Devices
B is for Burgers (3 Lessons I learned During a Month Without Them) Plus 3 Random Smartphone Pics
C is for Interview with a Cat
D is for Do What I Do and Eat What I Eat
E is for Eight Things I’ve Left Behind
F is for Foods That Bring Me Comfort
G is for #GirlsRock: An Interview Mental Health Care Advocate Kitt O’Malley
H is for Halfway There
I is for Ice Cream
J is for Justification for the Blog Life
K is for 7 Women I’d Sing Karaoke With
L is for Last 3 Blogs I Read (and Why You Should, Too)
M is for Men I Forgot to Be
N is for the New Plan
O is for One Day From Payday Spicy Chicken Skillet
P is for Too Many Projects, Not Enough Time (a Guest Post from Kathy of The Second Half of My Life)
These quotes! I’m saving all of them. Gandhi and Ackerman in particular. Thank you for this, Eli!
Glad you liked them, Martha. I have hundreds I made to go on bottom of posts. I think they’re good for sharing.
Thanks for the nomination, Eli. I will try my best to get the 3 quotes posted in 3 days. d=(´▽｀)=b
Wonder if they’ll be cat related …
hmmm…let me check my quotes CATalogue first. 😻
Great post! My son is very sensitive and his feelings get hurt very easily. I struggle with this because I feel that I have pretty tough skin when it comes to my feelings getting hurt. That causes me to become frustrated at times.
I love all these quotes.
Glad you liked these – you couldn’t beat the sources, right? My girls’ feelings aren’t easily hurt, and I wanted to raise them with hard exteriors and soft centers. It’s a tough balance, though. I think it’s difficult for those of us who aren’t as sensitive that way to realize when it’s happening to others, even if we are compassionate and empathetic.
I love this post, especially that last line about the curious power of words. Words are the most powerful thing in the world I think and I agree that they can be used for good or for bad.
Thanks, Beth! I think we’re much more cognizant when we’re using words for good, and don’t consider as much the harm we can do with the bad.
Beth and I are in agreement, the last quote is my favorite as well. As one of those saps who wears their hearts on their sleeves, I’m probably one that you moan about getting their feelings hurt. We are who we are… feelings are like spots that can be covered but are still there.
I love that last quote, Jaime. I definitely try to be sensitive to the sensitive! My biggest vice is what feels like good-natured teasing, which might not feel so good natured to everone.
Such powerful quotes. The second one especially speaks to me. I’m trying to be more present and focus on what is important. It’s something I struggle with, but work on constantly.
Glad they resonated, Shann. That second quote is so simple, yet so profound, isn’t it? The great thing about putting this idea into play is that you can hit reset any second of any day and be right back on track.
Your journey reminds me of the day in meditation class when I felt so distracted. I told my teacher I felt I failed that day. She asked if I took one mindful breath. I had, I said.
Then I hadn’t failed, she said.
Hey Eli! These are such great quotes! I love the Ghandi quote with which you opened. Incredible. I just want to sit in his words and allow them to open my embittered, shriveled, little heart from the inside out.
Glad to see that you are doing the A to Z challenge again this year. I’m not participating, but if I was, “A” would be for “avoidance.” I seem to lapse into these patterns where I don’t write anything for a week or so, then fall behind on keeping up with what my friends are writing, and then it is just easier to continue that inertia of not writing and not reading. At some point, I hope to get back and read your latest posts, and perhaps write a bit of my own stuff. In the meantime, hope you are well and remain well, my friend!
Thanks, Lu. These fit perfectly together. I believe you’re not giving your heart nearly enough credit.
My post tomorrow will include tips for new writers. I think some can apply to these veterans, too, like us.
I hope you’ll find something in it, and to realize you don’t have to write and read everything, but that it feels good to write and read something.
I’m doing great, and look forward to catching up with you!
“you don’t have to write and read everything, but that it feels good to write and read something.” Thank you so much for this. Seriously.
Any time, Lu. I hope you find peace in a document you fill with words, or from reading something someone else posted. Both, even. One word at a time.
Nice quotes Eli – and I enjoyed your connected stories. I’m impressed that you pulled them randomly, because to my mind they fit meld together quite perfectly. I think they outline the heart-mind-spirit connection I think we all want to strive for on this earth-walk journey of ours. Life is complicated no doubt about that, but these little guideposts along the way – these guiding words spoken in wisdom by someone, somewhere, sometime, they can help us remember, help us center, help us move forward.
Thanks, Deborah. Yes, they did have cohesion, despite their random order. And they do seem to follow that heart-mind-spirit connection.
These words we quote can also speak something different to us in various stations of life, too. They’re recyclable *and* renewable.
If a Creator spoke us into existence, then words are what we are.
Someone needs to quote you on that, Mimi. Profound.
Those are some great quote choices! I liked how you shared a little bit about each one. I think the second one was my favorite. 🙂 Thanks for sharing!
Thanks, Mandy! It was stream of consciousness after I got each one randomly. Go into this one with the second quote in your mind and heart and see what happens!
Looking forward to reading your blog. Looks full of adventures.
One thing I’m learning, is compassion and pain often go hand in hand. The challenge is to allow ourselves to be human in every moment. That’s the name of the game. To learn how to accept ourselves. And you’re doing amazingly. We can’t change what was, and what will be is yet to unfold. All we can really do is be who we are, find ways to heal the past, and try to enjoy the future as it unfolds.
Interesting observation, Susan. Humanity in every moment would lead to amazing results.
I have never felt as comfortable in my own skin. Life hasn’t really changed all that much, but I breath deeper.
I’m so much more conscious of every decision, every opportunity to do good or harm, and how easily we can do either without much thought.
Wonderful post Eli and so true, words, spoken or written, are incredibly powerful.
There’s lots of them over at your place, Miri. You should know.