If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you
But make allowance for their doubting too,
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:
If you can dream–and not make dreams your master,
If you can think–and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings–nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much,
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And–which is more–you’ll be a Man, my son!

Rudyard Kipling



Quotations from Walden

But lo! Men have become the tools of their tools.

We have built for this world a family mansion, and for the next a family tomb.

Our inventions are wont to be pretty toys, which distract our attention from serious things. They are but improved means to an unimproved end.

In short, I am convinced, both by faith and experience, that to maintain one’s self on this earth is not a hardship but a pastime. It is not necessary that a man should earn his living by the seat of his brow, unless he sweats easier than I do.

There is no odor so bad as that which arises from goodness tainted.

A man is not a good man to me because he will feed me if I should be starving, or warm me if I should be freezing, or pull me out of a ditch if I should ever fall into one. I can find you a Newfoundland dog that will do as much.

As long as possible live free and uncommitted.

Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth.

There are nine hundred and ninety-nine patrons of virtue to one virtuous man, but it is easier to deal with the real possessor of a thing than with the temporary guardian of it.

After the first blush of sin, comes its indifference.

Absolutely speaking, the more money, the less virtue; for money comes between a man and his objects and obtains them for him; and it was certainly no great virtue to obtain them.

Henry David Thoreau


Mark Twain

If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you; that is the principal difference between a dog and a man

Most writers regard truth as their most valuable possession, and therefore are most economical in its use.

Why shouldn’t truth be stranger than fiction? Fiction, after all, has to make sense.

Mark Twain


Victim of Americanism

I’m one of the 22 million black victims of the democrats, one of the 22 million black victims of the republicans and one of the 22 million black victims of Americanism. And When I speak I don’t speak as a democrat or a republican, nor an American. I speak as the victim of America’s so called democracy. You and I have never seen democracy, all we’ve seen is hypocrisy. When we open our eyes and look around America we see America not through the eyes of someone who has enjoyed the fruits of Americanism; we see America throughout the eyes of someone who has been the victim of Americanism. We don’t see any American dream; we’ve experienced only the American nightmare. We haven’t benefited from America’s democracy; we’ve only suffered from America’s hypocrisy.

Malcolm X



Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.

Continue reading Desiderata