Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Favorite Proverbs and Words of Wisdom

I know we all grew up with them. The sayings our Moms and Dads would use, when they needed to give some advice and nothing but cliche would work.

Now I find myself doing the same with my daughter. In fact, one of the most frequently used is one that my Mom also frequently used:

"Two wrongs DON'T make a right!"

Years ago, I had a little daily calendar (the kind you tear of a page each day) that had a lot of great sayings, cliches, provebs, and direct words of wisdom. I kept the pages I liked, that meant something to me, and a I transcribed their message onto index cards, and posted them on my fridge. Several years later, I still have those index cards on my fridge to remind me now and again of the wisdom of those who've gone before me. (No, "Two wrongs don't make a right" isn't on index card, as I know that one by heart.)

Here are the sayings I keep close to me:

"Use what talents you possess: The woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang the best." -- Henry Van Dyke

"Be glad of life because it gives you the chance to love and to work and to play and to look at the stars." -- Henry Van Dyke

"Each man has a choice in life; he may approach it as a creator or critic, a lover or hater, a giver or taker" -- Author Unknown

"Make of yourself a light" -- Buddha

"All things you do, do with your might. Things done by half are never done right." -- Author Unknown

"Just because you CAN, doesn't mean you SHOULD!" -- Author Unknown.

"An it harm none, do as you will." --The Wiccan Rede

Some of these have been sticking strongly in my mind, lately. Esp. the "Two wrongs", the "Just because you can", the "an it harm none"..... More and more I see folks who think that think simply because they CAN do something, they should and they will.

My hubby and daughter, for example, are looking forward to the Richardson Hwy being turned (at least part of it) into a drag-strip this weekend. I think it's ridiculous. I see the price of fuel, the possibility that fuel is getting to be in short supply. The ecological damage done by burning fuel and reving motors and idling cars. My hubby sees the loud noise. He's not getting into racing right now (though he'd love to) because we can't afford it. But, he figures that if you can afford the gas, why not?

As my sister once posed on HER blog: Supposing you had the means to explode a planet. Nobody would be harmed. It wouldn't affect anybody, but you'd get to see a BIG bang. Should you?

I said NO. You shouldn't. Why???? If nobody's going to be hurt, if it won't cause the solar system to swing out of whack, why shouldn't you cause a really big explosion for the fun of it, if you so want?!?!

My feeling is that things are created for a purpose. I don't know, necessarily what that purpose is. But, as that other quote says, you may approach life as a creator or a critic, a lover or a hater, a giver or a taker. I would rather create, than destroy. But even in creating, we must be careful in what we do. It's one thing to create afghans, or sweaters, or scarves. It would be entirely another to create a planet just because I was suddenly given the means to do so. No matter how inconsequential it may seem at the point when it's done, we cannot tell what the end outcome will be. Destroying that planet now may deprive future generations of a home. Creating that planet now may increase the gravitational pull in our solar system by large enough percentage that it draws in unexpected asteroids or comets or whatever that our grandchildren 5-times-removed must deal with. No, it wouldn't hurt US, but it would hurt THEM!

My dad's expressed his opinion (much to my annoyance) that he'd rather make the most of the days he's got left, driving around the country, using lots of fuel and producing lots of emmissions with is truck, than reduce his "footprint" thereby hopefully helping to reduce the environmental damage that his grandchildren (his very REAL, and currently on this earth granddaughters) will have to deal with in their adulthood. (Or, their teen years, even.)

Again, it comes back to "Just because you CAN, doesn't mean you SHOULD!"

I understand that there are some limits to this thought. I'm not going to withdraw my application from the running for that job at NPB because somebody else may need the job. I'm not going to quit breathing so that micro-organisms who die with my every breath may live. I'm not going to quit eatting potatoes because potatoes are the root of a living plant and eatting the potatoes will kill the plant.

But, I'm not going to celebrate the Nascar lifestyle. I'm going to use the burning of massive amounts of fuel in this weekend's drag-races to discuss peak oil with my daughter. I'm going to continue attempting to grow our own food so that we can reduce the amount of store-bought and mass-produced food we must buy from large corporations.

And, I'm going to continue using these proverbs and words of wisdom in my life, and to repeat them over and over to my daughter till they hopefully take root in HER mind and soul.

Do you have favorite proverbs and words of wisdom you can share with me??? I'd love to hear the favorites of some of my favorite folks.


I still haven't heard anything back on the job. It appears there were 7 applicants total. No announcement has been made yet as to who got the job, but I also haven't heard anything from the borough or the woman who'd be my boss as to offering the job to me. So, it's still up in the air.


We still haven't received Tay's curriculum. So homeschooling has yet to commence.


Scott and his dad did not see any caribou this past weekend. They DID get to see two 50+ inch (rack-size, that is) bull moose competing for territory in a locking of the horns "event". Scott said it was incredible! They ALSO saw plenty of caribou tracks, lots of them fresh, but are of the opinion that the caribou were driven further in to the recesses of the territory by all the moose hunters moving INto the territory in preparation for opening day of moose season.

Scott and Al will themselves be heading out for a week, this coming weekend, in an attempt to get a moose. We're only trying for one moose this year, seeing as they also have till the end of Oct. (I think!) to try for a caribou down in Ferry. One moose would drastically reduce our need for store-bought meat. One moose and one caribou would set us up for a couple of years!!!! (Personally, I prefer the flavor of caribou. Though moose is good, and BOTH are better than beef!) We may also try getting half a pig again this year. We've yet to decide on that.

I think that pretty well covers it for now.

Have a Blessed Day!


Fr. Peter Doodes said...

Hi Kati,

In the search for real living, this is the quote/thought that always comes to mind.

"When all is said and done it is the primal joys that are the most intense. One who conquers a country and rises to great prominence and honour gets out of it not one please more than one, who, sitting in the sunshine, watches their first-born's eforts to remove a finger or suck a toe." Anon.

I lived the Nascar life style in the UK... you are missing very, very little indeed!

I hope all goes well for the job.


Gina said...

Do you can the moose/caribou meat or just freeze it all? I can't imagine how much room one would need to put a moose in the freezer! :D

So, Alasakan, I've been avoiding this, how have you guys liked your Gov?

You don't have to answer that, of course, I have been avoiding all the politics. I am confused and almost apathetic about everyone.

I read somewhere that she is an 'extreme far right Christian similar to the extreme muslims in the Islamic ones.

Anyway, I've been dying to ask and maybe you are avoiding this and concentrating on your own survival (as I am too). It probably doesn't matter who gets in, LOL!

whimsical brainpan said...

I agree with you on the NASCAR lifestyle.

I hope you hear something about the job soon (hopefully that you got it :-)).

Good luck with the home schooling.

I would be very interested to taste caribou and moose.

Tori_z said...

There are times when I say I did something "just because I can" but I do agree that there are limits and that you shouldn't do things in general just because you can. For example... Taking a walk, sitting quietly lost in thought, etc... Those things you can do "just because" but I do agree with you that as a general rule you shouldn't do something just because you can.

My two favourite quotes were the ones I used recently as post titles. There are others I like, but none that stand out enough so that I can post them right now. The only one that does you already used... "And it harm none, do as you will!"


Hope you get to hear about that job soon, and that Tey's coriculum arrives soon so you can start her schooling.

Perhaps you can give her a project of some sort to do in the meantime?

Fr. Peter Doodes said...

For 'please' in my post, read 'pleasure'.

Sorry Kati, I got lost in thought, it was unfamiliar territory...

Wendy said...

My favorite quote from my mom is "Can't never could." She used it whenever I would say that I "couldn't" do something as her way of saying, "If you don't try, you'll never know if you can."

I haven't used it with my kids, but it figures rather prominently in my life, especially recently, and I've learned that there are a lot of things I never thought I could or would do that I have done and that I actually enjoy.

I agree - just because we have the means to do a thing, doesn't mean we should do it. I wish more people could figure that one out.

Connie Peterson said...

You are making my head hurt with all that thinking you've made me do! I agree with a lot of what you have said but my cold is not allowing me to think how to say it.

Thanks for the info on your governor --- she scares me with her views of women's rights (even is she IS a working mom!).

Blessings -- hope your neck feels better soon.