Monday, August 23, 2010

If you want to write

I'm finishing up Brenda Ueland's If You Want to Write, which has been one of the kindest, most generous, and encouraging books a writer could read.

I just wanted to post a couple of my favorite quotes:

"For when you come to think of it, the only way to love a person listening to them & seeing & believing in the god, in the poet, in them. For by doing this, you keep the god & the poet alive & make it flourish."

And from the chaper entitled "Why Women who do too much housework should neglect if for their writing" :

"If you are always doing something for others, like a servant or a nurse, & never anything for yourself, you cannot do others any good. You make them physically more comfortable. But you cannot affect them spiritually in any way at all. For to teach, encourage, cheer up, console, amuse, stimulate or advise a husband or children or friends, you have to be something yoursef. And how to be something yourself? Only by working hard & with gumption at something you love & care for & think is important."

"Menial work at the expense of all true, ardent, creative work is a sin agains the Holy Ghost."

Friday, August 6, 2010

Speaking of Faith Favorite

My weekly newsletter from Speaking of Faith requested that I send them my favorite SOF moment, as they are working on creating a show of memorable moments of the past seven years. I thought I'd post it here too, for those who are interested. This is from an interview Krista Tippett had with Jean Vanier, founder of l'Arche - a community dedicated to caring for adults with special needs. You can find the interview entitled The Wisdom of Tenderness here.

Jean Vanier: "Death is a passage, which will be an extraordinary discovery, something that'll be so amazing that we can't even imagine it.

It's like my little niece who died of AIDS, and she wasn't a believer. She said, 'What it's going to be like?' And I said, 'Well, you're going to fall asleep. And when you wake up, you'll be in such joy, such peace. Something that you've never, never lived before.' And she said, 'But I'm not a believer.' I said, 'But you remember when you're in that apartment in Paris and there were some Turkish immigrants that you make cakes for them. I've always seen you as somebody kind. And so your kindness you'll find, it'll be OK. And then the rest we will discover. It's going to be exciting. It's going to be wonderful.'"

Ms. Tippett: "This is another something you know, clearly. You know this. And all of your philosophy, all of your studies can't explain that to you, something you know."

Mr. Vanier: "Yes. Something that we have experienced — you see, if you just experience somewhere the peace of Jesus, the peace of being with other people, the peace of loving people. Well — and that experience transcends everything, the ideas we might have, because it's that experience where we live trust. And in Greek, the word "faith" and "trust" are the same word. Trust in other people, trust in God, trust in the peace that is in our hearts, trust also in those who are struggling to find peace and who got their angers and their pain. That's OK too. We're in it together."