A few great thoughts with which to begin 2022

January 18, 2022 | By Jim Stovall | Filed in: journalism.

“I notice that when all a man’s information is confined to the field in which he is working, the work is never as good as it ought to be. A man has to get a perspective, and he can get it from books or from people — preferably from both. This thing of sleeping and eating with your business can easily be overdone; it is all well enough—usually necessary—in times of trouble but as a steady diet it does not make for good business; a man ought now and then to get far enough away to have a look at himself and his affairs.”

— Harvey S. Firestone (written in 1926). (Thanks to Shane Parish, Farnam Street blog)

“One of the saddest tendencies in our present culture is an indignant intolerance for the basic humanity of being human. People of the past are harshly judged by the standards of the present (which their own difficult lives helped establish), and people of the present are harshly judged by impossible (and hypocritical, in the full context of any judger’s life) standards of uniform perfection across all regions of private and public existence. And yet the eternal test of character — our great moral triumph — is the ability to face our own imperfections with composure, reflecting on them with lucid and luminous determination to do better — an essential form of moral courage all the more difficult, and all the more important, amid a cultural atmosphere that mistakes self-righteousness for morality and suffocates the basic impulse toward betterment with punitive intolerance for human foible.”Luckily for Leo Tolstoy (September 9, 1828–November 20, 1910), and luckily for the generations of humans whose lives have been enriched and ennobled by his contribution to the common record of truth and beauty we call literature, he lived in a very different era. . . . ”

Maria Popova, Resolutions for a Life Worth Living: Attainable Aspirations Inspired by Great Humans of the Past, The Marginalian (formerly BrainPickings). Read this entire article.

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