„Possessing by letting go of things was a secret of ownership unknown to youth.“

Last update June 3, 2021. History
Yukio Mishima photo
Yukio Mishima60
Japanese author 1925 - 1970

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„I've always believed in the adage that the secret of eternal youth is arrested development.“

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„Let us ask the Gods not for possessions, but for things to do; happiness is in making things rather than consuming them.“

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Source: Fallen Leaves (2014), Ch. 2 : On Youth

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„Freeing yourself was one thing; claiming ownership of that freed self was another.“

—  Toni Morrison, book Beloved

Source: Beloved (1987), Ch. 9
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„The scientist, like the magician, possesses secrets. A secret — expertise — is somehow perceived as antidemocratic, and therefore ought to be unnatural.“

—  John Leonard American critic, writer, and commentator 1939 - 2008

"Books of the Times" in The New York Times (6 July 1981)
Context: For every wicked witch there is, in our culture, a black magician, an alchemist, a Flying Dutchman, a Doctor Strangelove, a Vincent Price. The scientist, like the magician, possesses secrets. A secret — expertise — is somehow perceived as antidemocratic, and therefore ought to be unnatural. We have come a long way from Prometheus to Faust to Frankenstein. And even Frankenstein's monster is now a joke. Mr. Barnouw reminds us of "The Four Troublesome Heads" (1898), in which a conjuror punishes three of his own severed heads because they sing out of tune; he hits them with a banjo.
This book, at once scrupulous and provocative, reminds us of two habits of mind we seem to have misplace — innocent wonder and an appreciation of practical brain power. Peeled grapes are out and LSD is in. (Again, alas.) If we laugh at Frankenstein, we also laugh at Bambi. We are more inclined to shrug than we are to gasp. Isn't everything a trick? Am I putting you on? Of course not; you wouldn't fit. Hit me with a banjo.

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„The secret of happiness is this: let your interests be as wide as possible, and let your reactions to the things and persons that interest you be as far as possible friendly rather than hostile.“

—  Bertrand Russell, book The Conquest of Happiness

Variant: The secret of happiness is very simply this: let your interests be as wide as possible, and let your reactions to the things and persons that interest you be as far as possible friendly rather than hostile
Source: 1930s, The Conquest of Happiness (1930)

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„Whether you succeed or not is irrelevant, there is no such thing. Making your unknown known is the important thing--and keeping the unknown always beyond you.“

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Quote in a letter to Sherwood Anderson, October 1923; as quoted in Georgia O'Keeffe: A Life, Roxana Robinson, University Press of New England, 1999
1917 - 1929
Context: I have been thinking of what you say about form... I feel that a real living form is the natural result of the individual’s effort to create the living thing out of the adventure of his spirit into the unknown.... and from that experience comes the desire to make the unknown known. By unknown I mean the thing that means so much to the person that he want to put it down - clarify something he feels but does not clearly understand... Making the unknown known.... if you stop to think of form as form you are lost.

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Jim Morrison photo

„There are things known
and there are things unknown
and in between are the doors.“

—  Jim Morrison lead singer of The Doors 1943 - 1971

Aldous Huxley, using the term "the doors of perception" which originated with William Blake in The Marriage of Heaven and Hell. It is sometimes credited to Morrison because he cited it in interviews as the inspiration for the name The Doors and without always crediting Huxley as the source.
Misattributed
Variant: There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception.
Source: Letters from Joe

Aldous Huxley photo

„There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception.“

—  Aldous Huxley English writer 1894 - 1963

Aldous Huxley, using the term "the doors of perception" which originated with William Blake in The Marriage of Heaven and Hell. It is sometimes credited to Morrison because he cited it in interviews as the inspiration for the name The Doors and without always crediting Huxley as the source.
Misattributed

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