Archive | clarity

It is seldom that liberty of any kind is lost all at once.

It is seldom that liberty of any kind is lost all at once. – David Hume What does that mean? This is a quote about small steps. Excepting the violent overthrow of a government, the erosion of liberty tends to move slowly. While this quote is about politics, I believe it applies to many other […]

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I always wanted to be somebody, but now I realize I should have been more specific.

I always wanted to be somebody, but now I realize I should have been more specific. – Lily Tomlin What does that mean? As this is a quote from a comedienne, you expect it to be funny. However, there is, as with all good humor, an underlying truth hiding inside. In this case, it’s about specificity, or […]

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It is not the answer that enlightens, but the question.

It is not the answer that enlightens, but the question. – Eugène Ionesco What does that mean? This is an interesting quote in that it turns a few things around from the usual way we think of them. The quote says it’s the question that gives us the enlightenment, not the answer. Could it really work […]

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When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth. – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, stated by Sherlock Holmes What does that mean? To me, this is all about logic. If you start with everything you can think of, and then eliminate those that are impossible, you are well on your […]

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He who wishes to be obeyed must know how to command.

He who wishes to be obeyed must know how to command. – Niccolò Machiavelli What does that mean? This one got a chuckle out of me, as I have been on both sides of this quote. If you are expecting someone to be a leader, and they don’t know how to lead, it’s really hard to follow […]

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Dream. Let nothing dim the light that shines within you.

Dream. Let nothing dim the light that shines within you. – Maya Angelou What does that mean? To me, this quote says that we all have an inner light, a dream, within us. This is something important for each of us to know, nurture, and empower. What is a dream, if not a heartfelt desire to achieve an outcome? We all have dreams, but how […]

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You can tell a man is clever by his answers. You can tell a man is wise by his questions.

You can tell a man is clever by his answers. You can tell a man is wise by his questions. – Naguib Mahfouz What does that mean? Clever answers are one of my favorite things. But, according the quote, all that clever answers tells us is how clever the person providing the answers happens to […]

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First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do.

First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. – Epictetus What does that mean? So how does one become something that they wish to be? According to the quote, the first step is to say to yourself what you wish to become. Note that it doesn’t say […]

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In order to use human intelligence properly our mind should be calm.

In order to use human intelligence properly our mind should be calm. – Dalai Lama What does that mean? This quote is fairly straight forward. We humans are a fairly clever lot. We are intelligent and can do a great many things with our minds. However, the quote cautions us to have a calm mind […]

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Let us be of cheer, remembering that the misfortunes hardest to bear are those which never come

Let us be of cheer, remembering that the misfortunes hardest to bear are those which never come. – Amy Lowell What does that mean? The quote starts on a high note, urging us to be ‘of cheer’ or happy. The reason why we should be cheerful? The rest of the quote says that we should be cheerful […]

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A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval

A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval. – Mark Twain What does that mean? This quote is talking about a basic function of our minds. We cannot be comfortable without our own mind being comfortable. We are what we think, and this quote is simply pointing this out. If we are uncomfortable in […]

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Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony. ― Mohandas Gandhi What does that mean? This is all about being congruent. Some people will say what they believe is expected, not what is actually going through their mind. Others will do what they think is expected, even though […]

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True love is like a pair of socks: you gotta have two and they’ve gotta match.

True love is like a pair of socks: you gotta have two and they’ve gotta match. – Erich Fromm What does that mean? Well, as a nerd an the antithesis of a snappy dresser, I might argue with having to have two that match, but two does seem to be a good number. Seriously, though, having […]

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My future starts when I wake up every morning… Every day I find something creative to do with my life.

My future starts when I wake up every morning… Every day I find something creative to do with my life. – Miles Davis What does that mean? I believe his quote is saying that he is always thinking about creating. For him the future begins anew every single morning. Each day is another step in […]

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The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.

The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing. – Stephen Covey What does that mean? Let’s see if we can dissect the quote, shall we? If I’m reading this right, there are three “main thing” repetitions. Let’s color code them to make this easier.      The main thing is to keep […]

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