As to when I shall visit civilization, it will not be soon, I think. I have not tired of the wilderness; rather I enjoy its beauty and the vagrant life I lead, more keenly all the time. I prefer the saddle to the streetcar and star-sprinkled sky to a roof, the obscure and difficult trail, leading into the unknown, to any paved highway, and the deep peace of the wild to the discontent bred by cities. Do you blame me then for staying here, where I feel that I belong and am one with the world around me? It is true that I miss intelligent companionship, but there are so few with whom I can share the things that mean so much to me that I have learned to contain myself. It is enough that I am surrounded with beauty…
Even from your scant description, I know that I could not bear the routine and humdrum of the life that you are forced to lead. I don’t think I could ever settle down. I have known too much of the depths of life already, and I would prefer anything to an anticlimax.
”—The last letter ever received from Everett Ruess, to his brother, Waldo, dated November 11, 1934.
Quoted from Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer. (via zerogate)
“Practice also the things you don’t expect to master. The left hand, clumsy at most things from inexperience, grasps the reigns more confidently than the right because it is used to them.”—Marcus Aurelius, The Emperor’s Handbook: A New Translation of the Meditations (Book 12:6)
“With every accident, ask yourself what abilities you have for making a proper use of it. If you see an attractive person, you will find that self-restraint is the ability you have against your desire. If you are in pain, you will find fortitude. If you hear unpleasant language, you will find patience. And thus habituated, the appearances of things will not hurry you away along with them”—Epictectus (via marliini)
Instead of writing a Top 10 of 2013, here is a list of all the books I read in 2013 with a one line review. The Grapes of Wrathby John Steinbeck - a classic, from the author of a dear book, East of Ed…
“Good and evil both increase at compound interest. That is why the little decisions you and I make every day are of such infinite importance. The smallest good act today is the capture of a strategic point from which, a few months later, you may be able to go on to victories you never dreamed of. An apparently trivial indulgence in lust or anger today is the loss of a ridge or railway line or bridgehead from which the enemy may launch an attack otherwise impossible.”—C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (via zerogate)
“Like leaves on trees the race of man is found, Now green in youth, now withering on the ground; Another race the following spring supplies: They fall successive, and successive rise.”—Homer, The Iliad (via zerogate)
“It is the business of the very few to be independent; it is a privilege of the strong. And whoever attempts it, even with the best right, but without being OBLIGED to do so, proves that he is probably not only strong, but also daring beyond measure. He enters into a labyrinth, he multiplies a thousandfold the dangers which life in itself already brings with it; not the least of which is that no one can see how and where he loses his way, becomes isolated, and is torn piecemeal by some minotaur of conscience. Supposing such a one comes to grief, it is so far from the comprehension of men that they neither feel it, nor sympathize with it. And he cannot any longer go back! He cannot even go back again to the sympathy of men!”— Friedrich Nietzsche (via lazylucid)
“Do you think the dictionary ever says to itself
I’ve got these words that mean completely
different things inside myself
and it’s tearing me apart?”—Dean Young, “Select Recent and New Errors” (via mllehazelwood)