Archive | repetition

Silence is safer than speech.

Silence is safer than speech. – Epictetus What does that mean? The longer version of the quote says “Silence is safer than speech; refrain from saying what shall be void of sense and open to blame.” Speaking when no speech is necessary or useful leads to saying things which are not always very bright, or […]

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Everybody should do at least two things each day that he hates to do, just for practice.

Everybody should do at least two things each day that he hates to do, just for practice. – William James What does that mean? This is a paraphrasing of a longer quote, wherein we are urged to practice doing things we would rather not do, so that in an emergency, we are better prepared to […]

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If you wish to be a writer, write.

If you wish to be a writer, write. – Epictetus What does that mean? While it is usually hard to find these quotes, I have managed to find a precise source for this quote of Epictetus. It is in his Discourses, in a section talking about how Habits are Formed. The meaning is both simple […]

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Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.

Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.” – Maya Angelou What does that mean? Courage is a powerful word. Whether it is one man standing against a line of tanks, or simply resisting your own personal temptation. Courage is a foundational virtue, without […]

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Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.

Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working. – Pablo Picasso What does that mean? This quote reminds me of opportunity, both lost and found. Opportunity or inspiration comes on its own schedule, not yours. Have you ever had a great idea, but you were on the couch, watching your favorite show or sports […]

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Even people opposed to religion need calm minds and compassion to make their work more effective.

Even people opposed to religion need calm minds and compassion to make their work more effective. – Dalai Lama What does that mean? This quote talks about how calm minds and compassion is useful to everyone, even those who do not have religious beliefs or are opposed to religion. Compassion does not require religion to […]

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The distance between your dreams and reality is called action.

The distance between your dreams and reality is called action. – Unknown What does that mean? This quote is about making your dreams a reality. We all have them, although we might call them aspirations or plans. But we all want to accomplish things. These things start as ideas in our minds. We develop them, […]

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Treat everyone with kindness and respect. Not because they are nice, but because you are.

Treat everyone with kindness and respect. Not because they are nice, but because you are. – Unknown What does that mean? If we waited until others were nice to us before we are nice to them, it might be a long wait. Especially if they are waiting for us to be nice to them first. […]

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What is harder than rock? What is softer than water? Yet hard rocks are hollowed out by soft water.

What is harder than rock? What is softer than water? Yet hard rocks are hollowed out by soft water. – Seneca What does that mean? This is a neat quote about the power of persistent, as well as consistent, effort. Over time, those drips can do some very amazing things. This quote is about how, […]

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No amount of falls will really undo us if we keep on picking ourselves up each time.

No amount of falls will really undo us if we keep on picking ourselves up each time. – C.S.Lewis What does that mean? This is another significantly shortened quote, per the limits of Twitter. A longer version is as follows: “I know all about the despair of overcoming chronic temptations. It is not serious provided self-offended petulance, […]

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First we make our habits, then our habits make us.

First we make our habits, then our habits make us. – Charles C. Noble What does that mean? This is another excellent chiasmus. It reminds us of the power of repeated actions, of our habits and what they can do to us, or for us. It starts with the obvious. We do things over and over, […]

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We are shaped and fashioned by what we love.

We are shaped and fashioned by what we love. – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe What does that mean? While some might state that we are shaped by what we hate, I believe that not everyone is motivated primarily by hate. Hate is an ‘away’ emotion. You don’t choose to have burgers because you hate tacos. It’s […]

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A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials.

A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials. – Seneca What does that mean? Back in the time of this quote, gemstones were polished by grinding. Cutting and cleaving, as we know them today, had yet to be invented. If you wanted something shiny, you ground it to the basic […]

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If you want the present to be different from the past, study the past.

If you want the present to be different from the past, study the past. – Spinoza What does that mean? There are plenty of ways to look at this quote, but at the heart of it is a simple thought. Learn from experiences. We can learn from our own experiences, and by studying the past, from […]

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Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers.

Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers. – Alfred, Lord Tennyson What does that mean? This is another one of those classic quotes. Short but sweet, and exactly on point. This quote starts by saying what we all know. “Knowledge comes” it says. Knowledge is everywhere. We learn all kinds of things, or at least we are exposed to […]

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