The always wonderful Brain Pickings presented my inbox with yet another opportunity for wakefulness in the form of a list of 16 Elevating Resolutions for 2016 Inspired by Some of Humanity's Greatest minds.
All of them are worth reading and this email list is one that won't disappoint. I've pulled my five favorites below:
ADRIENNE RICH: CULTIVATE HONORABLE RELATIONSHIPS
It is important to do this because it breaks down human self-delusion and isolation.
It is important to do this because in doing so we do justice to our own complexity.
It is important to do this because we can count on so few people to go that hard way with us.
SØREN KIERKEGAARD: RESIST ABSENTMINDED BUSYNESS
The unhappy person is one who has his ideal, the content of his life, the fullness of his consciousness, the essence of his being, in some manner outside of himself. The unhappy man is always absent from himself, never present to himself. But one can be absent, obviously, either in the past or in the future. This adequately circumscribes the entire territory of the unhappy consciousness.
RAINER MARIA RILKE: LIVE THE QUESTIONS
I beg you, to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer
SUSAN SONTAG: PAY ATTENTION TO THE WORLD
...A writer is someone who pays attention to the world — a writer is a professional observer.
I’m often asked if there is something I think writers ought to do, and recently in an interview I heard myself “Several things. Love words, agonize over sentences. And pay attention to the world. Needless to say, no sooner had these perky phrases fallen out of my mouth than I thought of some more recipes for writer’s virtue. For instance: “Be serious.” By which I meant: Never be cynical. And which doesn’t preclude being funny.
ERICH FROMM: MASTER THE ART OF LOVING
...Love is an art, just as living is an art; if we want to learn how to love we must proceed in the same way we have to proceed if we want to learn any other art, say music, painting, carpentry, or the art of medicine or engineering.