"The purpose of art is to lay bare the questions... by the answers." --James Baldwin (1924-1987)

"The purpose of art is to lay bare the questions that have been hidden
by the answers."
--James Baldwin (1924-1987)
"The days come and go like muffled and veiled figures sent from a
distant friendly party, but they say nothing, and if we do not use the
gifts they bring, they carry them as silently away."
--Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
"Believe nothing merely because you have been told it.... Do not
believe what your teacher tells you merely out of respect for the
teacher. But whatsoever, after due examination and analysis, you find
to be kind, conducive to the good, the benefit, the welfare of all
beings--that doctrine believe and cling to, and take it as your guide."
Buddha (about 623-543 BC)
"Death tugs at my ear and whispers,
'Live! I am coming.'"
--Virgil (70-19 B.C.)
"The moment we begin to fear the opinions of others and hesitate to
the truth that is in us, and from motives of policy are silent when we
should speak, the divine floods of light and life no longer flow into
our souls."
--Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815-1902)
"One of the few things I know...is this: spend it all, shoot it, play
it, lose it, all, right away, every time. Do not hoard what seems good
for [later]; give it all, give it now.... Something more will arise
later.... Anything you do not give freely and abundantly becomes lost
to you. You open your safe and find ashes."
--Annie Dillard
"They tell me I am going to die.
Why don't I seem to care?
My cup is full. Let it spill."
--Robert Friend (1913-1998)
Without music life would be a mistake
..........Friedrich Nietzsche
"On principle it is quite wrong to try founding a theory on observable
magnitudes alone. In reality the very opposite happens. It is the
theory which decides what we can observe."
--Albert Einstein (1879-1955) to Werner Heisenberg (1901-1976)
The saddest aspect of life right
now is that science gathers
knowledge faster than society
gathers wisdom.
Isaac Asimov
"Through our scientific and technological genius, we have made of this
world a neighborhood and yet we have not had the ethical commitment to
make of it a brotherhood. But somehow, and in some way, we have got to
do this. We must all learn to live together as brothers or we will all
perish together as fools. We are tied together in the single garment
destiny, caught in an inescapable network of mutuality. And whatever
affects one directly affects all indirectly."
--Martin Luther King, Jr.
"To lead people, walk beside them... As for the best leaders, people
not notice their existence. The next best, people honor and praise.
The next, people fear; and the next, people hate.... When the best
leader's work is done, people say, 'We did it ourselves!"
-- Lao-Tsu (6th century B.C.)
". . . Poetry arrived
in search of me. I don't know, I don't know where
it came from, from winter or a river. . .
my eyes were blind.
Something knocked in my soul,
fever or forgotten wings,
and I made my own way,
that fire,
I wheeled with the stars,
my heart broke free on the open sky."
--Pablo Neruda (1904-1973)
One day Kwang-tsze and a friend
were walking along a riverbank.
Kwang-tsze smiled and said,
"How delightfully the fishes are
enjoying themselves in the water!"
"You are not a fish," his friend said.
"How do you know whether or not
the fishes are enjoying themselves?"
"You are not me," Kwang-tsze said.
"How do you know that I do not know
that the fishes are enjoying themselves?"
--Taoist Mondo
Our works in stone, in paint, in print, are spared, some of them, for a
few decades or a millennium or two, but everything must finally fall in
war, or wear away into the ultimate and universal ash -- the triumphs,
the frauds, the treasures and the fakes. A fact of life: we're going to
die. 'Be of good heart,' cry the dead artists out of the living past.
“Our songs will all be silenced, but what of it? Go on singing.”
--Verites et Mensonges
"Let the beauty we love be what we do." - Rumi
The ceramics teacher announced on opening day that he was dividing the
class into two groups. All those on the left side of the studio, he
would be graded solely on the quantity of work they produced, all those
on the right solely on its quality. His procedure was simple: on the
final day of class he would bring in his bathroom scales and weigh the
work of the "quantity" group: fifty pounds of pots received an "A",
forty pounds a "B" and so on. Those being graded on "quality", however
needed to produce only one pot-albeit a perfect one- to get an "A".
Well, came grading time and a curious fact emerged: the works of
highest quality were all produced by the group being graded for
quantity. It seems that while the "quantity" group was busily churning
out piles of work- and learning from their mistakes- the "quality"
group had sat theorizing about perfection, and in the end had little
more to show for their efforts than grandiose theories and a pile of
dead clay.
"At night I walked along the shore where so many spend the day
shells for their collections. A woman walked among the starfishes that
waves and tide had stranded on the beach, picking up each tenderly and
casting it out to sea. I haled her and asked, 'With so many millions
left dying along these sands night after night after night, what
difference can you possibly make?' She gathered up another and arched
it high over the water. 'I made a difference for that one.' Silently
sought and picked up a still-living star, spinning it far out into the
--adapted from The Star Thrower by Loren Eiseley (1907-1977)
"A religious man is a person who holds God and man in one thought at
one time, at all times, who suffers no harm done to others, whose
greatest passion is compassion, whose greatest strength is love and
defiance of despair."
Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel
"God is of no importance unless He is of utmost importance."
Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel
"Just to be is a blessing. Just to live is holy."
Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel
"When I was young, I admired clever people. Now that I am old, I admire
kind people."
Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel
"Puritanism is the haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be
happy." - H. L. Menken
"After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the
inexpressible is music." -Aldous Huxley
"... he not busy being born is busy dying. " - Bob Dylan
"Once upon a time a man whose ax was missing suspected his neighbor's
son. The boy walked like a thief, looked like a thief, and spoke like
thief. But the man found his ax while digging in the valley, and the
next time he saw his neighbor's son, the boy walked, looked, and spoke
like any other child."
Lao-tzu (604-531 B.C.)
"May I become at all times, both now and forever,
a protector for those without protection
a guide for those who have lost their way
a ship for those with oceans to cross
a bridge for those with rivers to cross
a sanctuary for those in danger
a lamp for those who need light
a place of refuge for those needing shelter
and a servant to all those in need."
--The Dalai Lama
"Ring the bells that can still ring.
Forget your perfect offering.
There is a crack in everything.
That's how the light gets in."
--Leonard Cohen