„I had heard my father say that he never knew a piece of land run away or break.“

—  John Adams, Autobiography (1802–1807) <!-- Diary and Autobiography (1961) edited by Lyman Henry Butterfield -->
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John Adams2
1735 - 1826
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„I say nothing of father, for he is shrouded in a mystery I have never been able to penetrate. Slavery does away with fathers, as it does away with families.“

—  Frederick Douglass American social reformer, orator, writer and statesman 1818 - 1895
Context: I say nothing of father, for he is shrouded in a mystery I have never been able to penetrate. Slavery does away with fathers, as it does away with families. Slavery has no use for either fathers or families, and its laws do not recognize their existence in the social arrangements of the plantation. Chapter 3: Parentage.

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„It came to him merely to run away was folly, because he could never run away from himself.“

—  Sinclair Lewis American novelist, short-story writer, and playwright 1885 - 1951
Context: It came to him merely to run away was folly, because he could never run away from himself. ~ Ch. 25

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„Just then, in my great tiredness and discouragement, the phrase "Reverence for Life" struck me like a flash. As far as I knew, it was a phrase I had never heard nor ever read.“

—  Albert Schweitzer French-German physician, theologian, musician and philosopher 1875 - 1965
Context: At sunset of the third day, near the village of Igendja, we moved along an island set in the middle of the wide river. On a sandback to our left, four hippopotamuses and their young plodded along in our same direction. Just then, in my great tiredness and discouragement, the phrase "Reverence for Life" struck me like a flash. As far as I knew, it was a phrase I had never heard nor ever read. I realized at once that it carried within itself the solution to the problem that had been torturing me. Now I knew that a system of values which concerns itself only with our relationship to other people is incomplete and therefore lacking in power for good. Only by means of reverence for life can we establish a spiritual and humane relationship with both people and all living creatures within our reach. Only in this fashion can we avoid harming others, and, within the limits of our capacity, go to their aid whenever they need us.

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„I've never had any other loving heartfelt desire. From the minute I heard music I knew why I was born.“

—  Julie Gold American musician 1956
Context: I've never had any other loving heartfelt desire. From the minute I heard music I knew why I was born. To make music to play to listen to music, and for some reason I have been lucky enough to llive this beautiful life as a musicisan. I don't know. I love all things "nature". I'm an animal lover, but I don't have the smarts to be a vet, or the heart to have been a vet cause I cry over any wounded animal. … I might have been maybe a zoo keeper helping feed the animals. Feeding or petting the big cats or whatever. I don't know what else I would have done, because I love music too much. For anyone who has that calling and is trying also to make a living at it, it is really hard. Getting gigs and getting listened to. Getting respect, it's hard. Its what bonds us all because we have been so rejected and dejected. Yet we know in our hearts why we are here. Asked what she might be if she were not a musician, in an interview with Angela Page on Folk Plus WJFF Radio (24 June 2000) http://www.wjffradio.org/FolkPlus/interviews/Gold.html

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„I had only glanced at a book of his once in Putnam's store — that was all I knew of him, till I heard him lecture. — To my surprise, I found him quite intelligible, tho' to say truth, they told me that that night he was unusually plain.“

—  Herman Melville American novelist, short story writer, essayist, and poet 1819 - 1891
Context: I do not oscillate in Emerson's rainbow, but prefer rather to hang myself in mine own halter than swing in any other man's swing. Yet I think Emerson is more than a brilliant fellow. Be his stuff begged, borrowed, or stolen, or of his own domestic manufacture he is an uncommon man. Swear he is a humbug — then is he no common humbug. Lay it down that had not Sir Thomas Browne lived, Emerson would not have mystified — I will answer, that had not Old Zack's father begot him, old Zack would never have been the hero of Palo Alto. The truth is that we are all sons, grandsons, or nephews or great-nephews of those who go before us. No one is his own sire. — I was very agreeably disappointed in Mr Emerson. I had heard of him as full of transcendentalisms, myths & oracular gibberish; I had only glanced at a book of his once in Putnam's store — that was all I knew of him, till I heard him lecture. — To my surprise, I found him quite intelligible, tho' to say truth, they told me that that night he was unusually plain. — Now, there is a something about every man elevated above mediocrity, which is, for the most part, instinctuly perceptible. This I see in Mr Emerson. And, frankly, for the sake of the argument, let us call him a fool; — then had I rather be a fool than a wise man. —I love all men who dive. Any fish can swim near the surface, but it takes a great whale to go down stairs five miles or more; & if he don't attain the bottom, why, all the lead in Galena can't fashion the plumet that will. I'm not talking of Mr Emerson now — but of the whole corps of thought-divers, that have been diving & coming up again with bloodshot eyes since the world began. I could readily see in Emerson, notwithstanding his merit, a gaping flaw. It was, the insinuation, that had he lived in those days when the world was made, he might have offered some valuable suggestions. These men are all cracked right across the brow. And never will the pullers-down be able to cope with the builders-up. And this pulling down is easy enough — a keg of powder blew up Block's Monument — but the man who applied the match, could not, alone, build such a pile to save his soul from the shark-maw of the Devil. But enough of this Plato who talks thro' his nose. Letter to Evert Augustus Duyckinck (3 March 1849); published in The Letters of Herman Melville (1960) edited by Merrell R. Davis and William H. Gilman, p. 78; a portion of this is sometimes modernized in two ways:

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