Category Archive:

The Strangest Secret

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Long ago as a young man, I was introduced to the “Strangest Secret” by Earl Nightingale.  It was a short, inspirational film that I saw countless times with a group of sales people (it was used to recruit other sales people into the company) and the ideas became inculcated into my psyche.

The strangest secret:  We become what we think about.

It’s implications are powerful, both aspirational and perhaps scary.

The text is here for your personal enjoyment.

 

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Fay Vincent, Fatherly Advice

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From Wall Street Journal, Friday, June 14, 2013.

I love his advice about work,

If your boss or employer is not making money on you, you will eventually lose your job.  Your work has to permit him to profit on what you produce.  If you and the employer just break even you are not being properly productive.  Get to work early and stay late if necessary.

And then there is his healthy cynicism about politicians,

There is no such thing as an honest politician.  He viewed politicians with the same cynical eye he cast on doctors, lawyers and priests.  He accepted the argument there must be some good and decent ones but he was suspicious until solid facts prevailed.

I can guess what he thought about insurance people…

Fay Vincent, a former CEO of Columbia Pictures Industries and commissioner of Major League Baseball, has served as a trustee of Fairfield University, Williams College and Carleton College.

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If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter…

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I’m always amused by this saying, and wondered to whom to give it attribution…

While many famous names are mentioned, it would appear to have first been coined by French mathematician and philosopher, Blais Pascal.

From quoteinvestigator.com.

 

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Cut to the Chase

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from Wikipedia,

“Cut to the chase” is a saying that means to get to the point without wasting time.

The phrase originated from early silent films. It was a favorite of and thought to have been coined by Hal Roach Sr (January 14, 1892 – November 2, 1992). Films, particularly comedies, often climaxed in chase scenes to add to film time. Some inexperienced screenwriter or director, unsure how to get to the climax or the lack of script to meet time requirements, would just make an abrupt transition, known as a cut.

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Character

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Source unknown, found at www.choicedrivenlife.com

Watch your thoughts, for they become your words,

Watch your words, for they become your actions,

Watch your actions, for they become your habits,

Watch your habits, for they become your character,

Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.

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A Ski Vacation

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My friend Jack Connell said he just returned from a ski vacation…”Spending the Kids Inheritance“  I like it!

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Education begins at 60!

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I recently came across this passage by Mortimer J. Adler, an author and former Chairman of the Board of Encyclopedia Britannica and Co-Founder of The Center for the Study of Great Ideas.  I first encountered Mr. Adler in a terrific book called “How to Read a Book” which changed my reading habits forever.

“For more than forty years, a controlling insight in my educational philosophy has been the recognition that no one has ever been–no one can ever be–educated in school or college.  That would be the case if our schools and colleges were at their very best, which they certainly are not, and even if the students were among the best and the brightest, as well as conscientious in the application of their powers.  The reason is simply that youth itself–immaturity–is an insuperable obstacle to becoming educated.  Schooling is for the young.  Education comes later.  The very best thing for our schools to do is to prepare the young for continued learning in later life by giving them the skills of learning and the love of it.

To speak of an educated young person or of a wise young person, rich in the understanding of basic ideas and issues, is as much a contradiction in terms as to speak of a round square.   The young can  be prepared for education in the years to come, but only mature men and women can become educated, beginning the process in their forties and fifties and reaching some modicum of genuine insight, sound judgment and practical wisdom after they have turned sixty.

Those who take this prescription seriously would, of course, be better off if their schooling had given them the intellectual discipline and skill they need to carry it out, and if it also had introduced them to the world of learning with some appreciation of its basic ideas and issues.  But even the individual who is fortunate enough to leave  school or college with a mind so disciplined, and with an abiding love of learning, would still have a long road to travel before he or she became an educated person.  If our schools and colleges were doing their part and adults were doing theirs, all would be well.  However, our schools and colleges are not doing their part because they are trying to do everything else.  And adults are not doing their part because most are under the illusion that they had completed their education when they finished their schooling.

Only the person who realizes that mature life is the time to get the education that no young person can ever acquire is at last on the high road to learning.  The road is steep and rocky, but it is the high road, open to anyone who has skill in learning and the ultimate goal of all learning in view–understanding the nature of things and man’s place in the total scheme.   An educated person is one who through the travail of his own life has assimilated the ideas that make him representative of his culture, that make him a bearer of its traditions and enable him to contribute to its improvement.”

These wise words echo my own feelings of about the subject.  As the educational establishment is coming under more scrutiny and as education gets more expensive without apparent concomitant increase in value, perhaps this is food for thought.

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Great Quotes

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  • “When all was said and done, more was said than done” — Anon
  • “The road to success is always under construction” — Lily Tomlin
  • Definition of Selfishness, Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary, adj,  “Devoid of consideration for the selfishness of others.”
  • “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re misinformed.” — Mark Twain
  • “Spent half my life on wine, women and song…and I wasted the other half.”
  • “Experience is the name every one gives to their mistakes.”–Oscar Wilde
  • “Either that wallpaper goes, or I do.” –Oscar Wilde’s, dying words
  • “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”–Albert Einstein
  • “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.” (from a House of Commons speech by Winston Churchill on Nov. 11, 1947)
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Mark Twain–

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Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.

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Ralph Waldo Emerson–

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It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion.  It is easy in solitude to live after our own.  But the great man is he who in the midst of a crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of soliltude.

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