A worthwhile meditation on art in light of the human limitations of artists. Read it here.
Brief but interesting thoughts from Seth Godin on early adoption and creativity. "I love to hear about the next big thing, but I'm far more interested in what you're doing with the old big thing." (via LifeHacker)
A short online comic that I enjoyed. Read it here.
The mechanics of Choose Your Own Adventure books make for an interesting read and some strangely beautiful charts.
"The NEA did encourage a handpicked, pro-Obama arts group to address issues under contentious national debate. That fact is irrefutable." Read more here.
For a limited time, you can download an EP of free music from a new musical called "Prodigal God" here. It's not directly related to the supposed-to-be-great Keller book, if you're wondering. (via BTW)
Click here to download a free album by The Wailing Wall. (I have been enjoying it over the last few months...)
I'd love to see this singer/songwriter (violinist/whistler/etc.) live. Click here to get a taste of why that is.
...for many reasons. This is one of them.
Recently, I've been enjoying the album Now They Shut Us Down by Kid Mud. Listen to the whole thing online here.
"Genius is nothing more nor less than childhood recaptured at will."
--Charles Baudelaire, from The Painter of Modern Life and Other Essays
"We live in an age notable for a kind of fashionable silliness and imbued with a restless desire for change.
It sometimes seems that nothing old, nothing well-established, nothing which has evolved through centuries of experience and loving use escapes our urge to diminish, revise or abolish it.
Above all every organisation has to be relevant—a very fashionable word—to the needs of modern life, as if human beings in the twenty-first century are somehow fundamentally different in their needs and aspirations from all previous generations.
A country which ceases to value and learn from its history, neglects its language and literature, despises its traditions and is unified only by a common frenetic drive for getting and spending and for material wealth, will lose more than its nationhood; it will lose its soul."
--P.D. James, from “Through All the Changes Scenes of Life: Living with the Prayer Book”
"When we do philosophy we are like savages, primitive people, who hear the expressions of civilized men, put a false interpretation on them, and then draw the queerest conclusions from it."
--Ludwig Wittgenstein (via Fors Clavigera)
"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."
--Theodore Roosevelt, from his speech "Citizenship In A Republic"
"What we suffer from to-day is humility in the wrong place. Modesty has moved from the organ of ambition. Modesty has settled upon the organ of conviction; where it was never meant to be. A man was meant to be doubtful about himself, but undoubting about the truth; this has been exactly reversed....
...the old humility made a man doubtful about his efforts, which might make him work harder. But the new humility makes a man doubtful about his aims, which will make him stop working altogether."
–G.K. Chesterton, from Orthodoxy
"Make no little plans. They have no magic to stir men's blood and probably themselves will not be realized. Make big plans. Aim high in hope and work, remembering that a noble, logical diagram once recorded will never die, but long after we are gone will be a living thing, asserting itself with ever-growing insistency. Remember that our sons and grandsons are going to do things that would stagger us."
–Daniel Burnham, architect of Chicago, quoted in Charles Moore, Daniel H. Burnham: Planner of Cities, II:147. (via Christ is Deeper Still)
“It is a laborious madness and an impoverishing one, the madness of composing vast books – setting out in five hundred pages an idea that can be perfectly related orally in five minutes. The better way to go about it is to pretend that those books already exist, and offer a summary, a commentary on them.”
–Jorge Luis Borges, from the preface to Ficciones
See full post for Yancey Strickler’s 2005 taxonomy of top ten music lists, as cited here.
“Accept what comes from silence.
Make the best you can of it.
Of the little words that come
out of the silence, like prayers
prayed back to the one who prays,
make a poem that does not disturb
the silence from which it came.”
–Wendell Berry, from How to be a Poet
“History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes.”
—Attributed to Mark Twain
“A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.”
–C.S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain
“I had hardly begun to read
I asked how can you ever be sure
that what you write is really
any good at all and he said you can’t
you can’t you can never be sure
you die without knowing
whether anything you wrote was any good
if you have to be sure don’t write”
—W.S. Merwin, Opening the Hand