"The human mind is capable of being excited without the application of gross and violent stimulants; and he must have a very faint perception of its beauty and dignity who does not know this, and who does not further know, that one being is elevated above another, in proportion as he possesses this capability. It has therefore appeared to me, that to endeavour to produce or enlarge this capability is one of the best services in which, at any period, a Writer can be engaged; but this service, excellent at all times, is especially so at the present day. For a multitude of causes, unknown to former times, are now acting with a combined force to blunt the discriminating powers of the mind, and, unfitting it for all voluntary exertion, to reduce it to a state of almost savage torpor. The most effective of these causes are the great national events which are daily taking place, and the increasing accumulation of men in cities, where the uniformity of their occupations produces a craving for extraordinary incident, which the rapid communication of intelligence hourly gratifies. To this tendency of life and manners the literature and theatrical exhibitions of the country have conformed themselves."
The effect of Margaret Thatcher
If love is something you cherish, it is hard to glean much joy from death, even in one’s enemies.
If you behave like there’s no such thing as society, in the end there isn’t.
What is more troubling is my inability to ascertain where my own selfishness ends and her neo-liberal inculcation begins. All of us that grew up under Thatcher were taught that it is good to be selfish, that other people’s pain is not your problem, that pain is in fact a weakness and suffering is deserved and shameful. Perhaps there is resentment because the clemency and respect that are being mawkishly displayed now by some and haughtily demanded of the rest of us at the impending, solemn ceremonial funeral, are values that her government and policies sought to annihilate.
I do not yet know what effect Margaret Thatcher has had on me as an individual or on the character of our country as we continue to evolve. As a child she unnerved me but we are not children now and we are free to choose our own ethical codes and leaders that reflect them.
Russell Brand on the passing or Margaret Thatcher, via The Guardian
But the truth is that I never felt satisfied by my actions. Hatred and anger cannot heal a broken heart.
But the future of the Israeli-Palestinian peace does not depend only on politicians signing an agreement. It also depends on citizens, who can make or break any such pact. The people should lead the politicians.
In my work as a conflict resolution specialist, I have found that the majority of Israelis and Palestinians are indifferent and ineffective. Indifference is the greatest enemy to peace and justice.
The antidote to that apathy is interaction. What Israelis and Palestinians need more than anything right now is to find ways of being with each other. We need to put cracks in the walls that separate people. We need to take classes together.
I don’t know what the final agreement between Israelis and Palestinians will look like–one state, two states, or a confederation. I do know that no agreement will survive if the people from both sides don’t start a true reconciliation project.
Our division should never be between Israelis and Palestinians but rather between those who work tirelessly for peace and those who do not.
Aziz Abu Sarah for National Geographic
“Well,” Tony said. “I have a story to tell you.”
And when he had finished, my dad’s head must have been on a teacup ride.
Actually, I’m pretty sure he thought Tony was putting him on. Both Tony and my dad had long histories as practical jokers, and the jokes my dad liked best were the long cons, where you can convince people of a story that alters their reality in some small way.
by Kevin Guilfoile about his aging father, Bill Guilfoile
"All men think all men mortal, but themselves."