"Although many writers had had periods of significant depression, mania, or hypomania, they were consistently appealing, entertaining, and interesting people. They had led interesting lives, and they enjoyed telling me about them as much as I enjoyed hearing about them. Mood disorders tend to be episodic, characterized by relatively brief periods of low or high mood lasting weeks to months, interspersed with long periods of normal mood (known as euthymia to us psychiatrists). All the writers were euthymic at the time that I interviewed them, and so they could look back on their periods of depression or mania with considerable detachment. They were also able to describe how abnormalities in mood state affected their creativity. Consistently, they indicated that they were unable to be creative when either depressed or manic."
"Be relentless without being obnoxious. Be ambitious, and own your ambition—that goes especially for women. It’s okay to say, ‘I want greatness.’"
§ Stopping to Look for Something §
Sitting at the foot of the bodhi tree on the night when he realized the truth, the Buddha discovered something which is very surprising to him and to us. He saw that the good, the beautiful and the true are to be found in everyone. But very few people know that. People think that the true, the beautiful, and the good exist somewhere else, it is in someone else. They do not know that in the deep levels of themselves there is the true, the beautiful, and the good. And because we are not able to be in touch with these things, the good, the beautiful, and the true, in ourselves, we have the feeling that we lack something, that we are a saucepan without a lid. And the whole of our life we are looking for someone else to replace that lack. How strange, all living beings have the fully awakened nature, but none of them know it. And because of that they drift and sink from lifetime to lifetime in the great ocean of Samara, in suffering. And that is what the Buddha said the moment when he realized the path.
And so when we are able to recognize that in us there is the essence of the good, the beautiful and the true, we will be able to stop going in search. We will stop feeling that we lack something and we will stop running around in the world, in the universe looking for something. The truth is that we return to ourselves in order to be in touch with the good, beautiful and true that are in us. And at the moment we are in touch with those things, we are able to stop wandering around feeling we lack something. And we are able to stop deceiving others. We don’t have to adorn ourselves, make ourselves up any more, because we have discovered the true, the beautiful, and the good right here within us.
"For centuries, the myth of the lone genius has towered over us, its shadow obscuring the way creative work really gets done. The attempts to pick apart the Lennon-McCartney partnership reveal just how misleading that myth can be, because John and Paul were so obviously more creative as a pair than as individuals, even if at times they appeared to work in opposition to each other. The lone-genius myth prevents us from grappling with a series of paradoxes about creative pairs: that distance doesn’t impede intimacy, and is often a crucial ingredient of it; that competition and collaboration are often entwined. Only when we explore this terrain can we grasp how such pairs as Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, William and Dorothy Wordsworth, and Martin Luther King Jr. and Ralph Abernathy all managed to do such creative work. The essence of their achievements, it turns out, was relational. If that seems far-fetched, it’s because our cultural obsession with the individual has obscured the power of the creative pair."
Swami Vivekananda on the secret of work — a beautiful and ever-timely read from1896, intelligent consolation for the pressures of our age of productivity
"So began the longest marketing campaign in history, with the early water lilies and magnolias the first plants to evolve petals, conspicuously white against the forests of green. The first pollinators may have been beetles, which many water lilies still rely on to this day. With this new reliable means of pollination, insect-pollinated plants became enormously successful and diversified. Different plants now began vying with one another for insect attention, evolving bright colors, patterns and elaborate shapes, and the land became clothed in flowers."
"In life there will be a time where you meet that one person and that one person will be absolutely perfect for you. And you won’t be ready for them until you learn to love that part of you. That part of you that make you special. That makes you different. That makes you able to love fully with absolutely no shame or regret. Wholeheartedly. Throwing yourself into it 100% of the time. And it will be the most magical, insanely romantic time of your life."
"Ah, but I love to draw beautiful words, like trumpets of light…I adore you, words who are sensitive to our sufferings, words in red and lemon yellow, words in the steel-blue colour of certain insects, words with the scent of vibrant skills, subtle words of fragrant roses and seaweed, prickly words of sky-blue wasps. words with powerful snouts, words of spotless ermine, words spat out by the sands of the sea, words greener than Cyrene fleece, discreet words whispered by fishes in the pink ears of shells, bitter words, tornado and storm-tossed words, being beaten, evil words, festive words, tornado and storm-tossed words, windy words, reedy words, the wise words of children, rainy, tearful words, words without rhyme or reason, I love you! I love you!"