As I've often said here and there, I've been an inveterate and voracious reader since I learned to read when I was five or six. If it has printed words, I'll read it -- from labels on household products to encyclopedias. It's been that way for decades.
I do have my favorites but I rarely meet a book I don't like although there are some that I avoid because they bore me. My vast reading of hundreds of books over the years have more than probably anything else, made me the person I am today. Over the years, I've built a huge database of quotations from many of the greatest -- and not so great -- minds of yesterday and today and many of them have become part of my philosophy of life.
Here are a few of my favorite quotes keep me going. I hope you enjoy them.
* What does not destroy me, makes me stronger. --Friedrich Nietzsche
* Once you accept the existence of God -- however you define him, however you explain your relationship to him -- then you are caught forever with his presence in the center of all things. You are also caught with the fact that man is a creature who walks in two worlds and traces upon the walls of his cave the wonders and the nightmare experiences of his spiritual pilgrimage. -- Morris West
* A life lived without regret is a life not lived. -- Anonymous
* What you need is sustained outrage...there's far too much unthinking respect given to authority -- Molly Ivins
* When you're going through hell, keep going! -- Winston Churchill
* The past is a bucket of ashes. -- Carl Sandburg
* The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom. -- H. L. Mencken
* The whole conviction of my life now rests upon the belief that loneliness, far from being a rare and curious phenomenon, peculiar to myself and to a few other solitary men, is the central and inevitable fact of human existence. -- Thomas Wolfe
* It's not the tragedies that kill us, it's the messes. -- Dorothy Parker
* We have met the enemy and he is us. -- Pogo
* All the contact I have had with politics has left me feeling as though I had been drinking out of spittoons. -- Ernest Hemingway
* There may be a time in life when one is tired of everything and feels as if all one does is wrong, and there maybe some truth in it, Do you think this is a feeling one must try to forget and to banish, or is it 'the longing for God,' which one must not fear, but cherish to see if it may bring us some good? Is it 'the longing for God' which leads us to make a choice which we never regret? Let us keep courage and try to be patient and gentle. And not mind being eccentric, and make distinction between good and evil. -- Vincent Van Gogh
* There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it. -- Oscar Wilde
* The first rule of holes: when you're in one, stop digging. -- Molly Ivins
* I'm completely in favor of the separation of Church and State. My idea is that these two institutions screw us up enough on their own, so both of them together is certain death. -- George Carlin
* Never allow someone to be your priority while allowing yourself to be their option. -- Anonymous (attributed to Mark Twain but isn't everything? et al?)
And this last one is what I recall when the going gets tough:
* Whatever happens at all happens as it should; you will find this true, if you watch narrowly. -- Marcus Aurelius
The trick is 'watching narrowly.' Sigh.