The wisdom of the wise and the experience of the ages, may be preserved by quotation. - Issac D’Israeli
My Dad kept the old school case that my little sister took with her on her first day of school. As we grew older, every now and then we would watch as he reached into the stairwell cupboard, pull out the suitcase, pop the clips and retrieve some treasure or other which he stored there.
So often as children, we would come home from school with a story about some cruelty inflicted on us by our teachers or a treachery by a classmate and Dad would listen until we’d used up all the words to describe the assault. Then thoughtfully he’d go to his little case of treasures and take out an old leather-bound notebook in which he had written down quotes he’d come across in his reading. Taking his time to flick through it and scanning each page carefully, finally Dad would lift his eyes, a smile wreathed across his face as if he’d found the secret of the Holy Grail. Then reading from his notebook he would say something like "'There are two types of pain, one that hurts you and one that changes you” Which is it do you think you’re feeling as a result of what happened?' he’d ask.
There were times in those days when we just wished he’d pulled two lollipops out of that suitcase instead of the notebook but today, we realise the riches it held and the future-gifts it yielded.
I too keep a quotes notebook and in considering what I’d write about to you today, I wondered what it is about keeping quotes that gives me so much pleasure. And I keep coming back to this: Quotes declutter my head and crystallise my thoughts. I’m grateful that some wise person before me has succinctly articulated their thoughts so that my heart can recognise its truth as my own.
I find quotes restful because they get rid of all the excess and cut straight to the heart of an idea, the words appealing to us because they seem to confirm and define our values more clearly.
For some their favourite quotes may be from scripture, for others it may be from a character in history whom they admire JFK, Eleanor Roosevelt, Churchill etc.. People who enjoy humour keep quotes from funny people such as Mae West or the Marks Brothers. Others enjoy quotes from motivational gurus such as Dr. Wayne Dyer, Maya Angelou, Gabby Bernstein or Tony Robinson. On life and glamour - Coco Channel, Audrey Hepburn, Diane Von Furstenberg etc. and philosophical quotes can be from Rumi, Henry Thoreau, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nietzsche etc.
So today’s exercise is to consider beginning a quotes notebook and to listen out for usable quotes as you read, listen to music, watch a movie and hear something which reflects your own values, beliefs and philosophy. Then make a note of it.
There will be times when one of these may be the exact words to give you a fresh perspective, lift your spirits or even point the way in moving forward. Times when you find it difficult to express or access your own wisdom. This is when the pearls of the wisdom of others become the jewels which reflect our truth and point the way back home.
Here are some from my collection to help you begin your own.
“When you change the way you look at things, what you look at changes.” - Dr. Wayne Dyer.
“We do not heal the past by dwelling there. We heal the past by living fully in the present.” Marianne Williamson.
"Magic is believing in yourself. If you can do that you can make anything happen.” - Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe.
“We do not attract what we want. We attract what we are.” Dr. Wayne Dyer
“When we know better, we do better.” Maya Angelou
“What you think you attract. What you feel, you become. And what you imagine, you create.” Buddha
Wishing you a peaceful and pleasant Sunday evening,
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