Welcome to Towards Simplicity. I blog my goals, especially my reading and studies, and my ongoing downscaling and using up of material stuff and working towards a more minimalist lifestyle.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

30 Days of Blogging Challenge - Day 3 - Your Favourite Quote

My favourite quote.  Hmmm.  Well, there are three that spring to mind at once, rather than just one.

The first is Henry Ford's "Whether you think you can, or you can't, you're absolutely right." I may not be word perfect on this one, but he's talking about the power of self-belief and how so many people shoot themselves in the foot by not trying something they actually could do, because they can't quite believe they can.  I see this a lot and it often saddens me.

The second comes from a much higher source and is commonly known as The Golden Rule.  Often quoted from the linguistically obsolete King James Version of the Bible as, 'Do as you would be done by', a more comprehensible, modern version would be, 'All things ... that you want men to do to you, you also must do to them.' (New World Translation, Matthew 7:12)  Often when I discuss this with Chinese people, they bring up Confucius' similar, but much narrower saying, 'Don't do to others what you don't want them to do to you.'  Confucius' proverb confined itself merely to avoiding doing bad, but Jesus's saying was much, much broader and encompasses anything.  It means taking the initiative to do good to others, to treat them well and in a pleasant, mannerly fashion as well as avoiding doing harm.  It's also helpful to bear this one in mind when one is tempted to give someone a piece of one's mind.  Supposing I was in their shoes, would I want the problem approaching in this manner?  Would it get the best from me?  If not, what would be more effective, and how would I like to be treated?

I'll close with the third, which is one from my childhood days and one I included yesterday: 'Least said, soonest mended.'  Ever wished you could un-say something?  Who hasn't?  Often it's better to think it and not say it.  If one is lucky and can graduate to that level, then the ultimate aim is not not even think it, but I believe that's beyond most of us.... ;)

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2015

1 comment:

Rachel said...

We're only human - saying what you shouldn't is probably part of the human condition!