We have to be utterly broken before we can realize that it is impossible to better the truth. It is the truth that we deny which so tenderly and forgivingly picks up the fragments and puts them together again.

Laurens Van der Post

In later life I care only for peace;
Affairs of state are none of my concern.
I know I have no plan to save the world,
Only my old retreat here in this world.
My girdle loosened to the cool pine wind,
I play the lute beneath the mountain moon.
You ask the laws of failure and success?
The fishermen are singing in the cove . . .

Chinese poem

Through the anima and the animus, so-called, present personalities are able to draw upon the knowledge and intuitions and background that was derived from past existences as the opposite sex. On some occasions, for example, the woman may go overboard and exaggerate female characteristics, in which case the animus or male within comes to her aid, bringing through dream experiences an onrush of knowledge that will result in compensating male-like reactions . . .

Seth, Seth Speaks

To him a thinking man’s job was not to deny one reality at the expense of the other, but to include and to connect.

Ursula Le Guin, The Dispossessed

There is a field where all wonderful perfections of microscope and telescope fail. All exquisite niceties of weights and measures as well as that which is behind them, the keen and driving power of the mind. No facts, however indubitably detected, no effort of reason, however magnificently maintained, can prove that Bach’s music is beautiful.

Edith Hamilton

By its novelty, a poetic image sets in motion the entire linguistic mechanism. The poetic image places us at the origin of the speaking being.

Gaston Bachelard

The hammer is the abstraction of each one of its hammerings.

Ortega y Gasset

It is easier to fight for one’s principles than to live up to them.

Alfred Adler

Theories of a wholly good or wholly malevolent world strike him as foolish. Of those who believe in a wholly good world he says that they do not understand depravity. As for pessimists, the question he asks of them is, “Is that all they see, such people?” For him, the world is both, and therefore it is neither. Merely to make a judgment of that kind is, to representatives of either position, a satisfaction. Whereas, to him, judgment is second to wonder, to speculation on men, drugged and clear, jealous, ambitious, good, tempted, curious, each in his own time and with his customs and motives, and bearing the imprint of strangeness in the world. In a sense, everything is good because it exists. Or, good or not good, it exists, it is ineffable, and, for that reason, marvelous.

Saul Bellow, Dangling Man

Husband and wife are like the two equal parts of a soybean. If the two parts are put under the earth separately, they will not grow. The soybean will grow only when the parts are covered by the skin. Marriage is the skin which covers each of them and makes them one.

Baba Hari Dass

Be wary of any enterprise that requires new clothes.


The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Oh, you who are trying to learn the marvel of Love through the copy book of reason, I’m very much afraid that you will never really see the point.


With love, even the rocks will open.

Hazrat Inayat Khan

The illustrations in this article are available as a PDF only. Click here to download.

The illustrations are from Ernest Lehner’s Symbols, Signs and Signets (Dover) and are identified as Gnostic Gems from Jacob Bryant’s “Analysis of Ancient Mythology.” From left to right: Dove and Olive Branch — The Rescue (Greek); Aurelia The Butterfly — Resurrection (Egyptian); The Sky Serpent — Providence (Egyptian); Luna Regia — The Moon Goddess — Preservation (Roman); The Sea Bird and The Ark — Resurrection (Egyptian); Dove and Cornucopia — Good Fortune (Roman).