what is our ultimate challenge?

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“Let go of certainty. The opposite isn’t uncertainty. It’s openness, curiosity and a willingness to embrace paradox, rather than choose up sides. The ultimate challenge is to accept ourselves exactly as we are, but never stop trying to learn and grow.”
—Tony Schwartz

the doors we haven’t opened

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“Around here, however, we don’t look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we’re curious…and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”
—Walt Disney

what is the best thing for being sad?

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“The best thing for being sad,” replied Merlin, beginning to puff and blow, “is to learn something. That’s the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then — to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn.”
—T.H. White, The Once and Future King

this sums up what was wrong with me

There’s a favorite quote of mine from Dale Carnegie’s How to Stop Worrying and Start Living that really sums up what was wrong with me: “I was trying to wash today’s dishes, yesterday’s dishes and dishes that weren’t even dirty yet.” The dishes that need to be washed today are those that were used during the course of a single day.

—Fumio Sasaki, Goodbye, Things

I was desperate to convey my worth

I was desperate to convey my worth through my books. They were there to communicate one message:

I’ve read a lot of books to date. As anyone who looks at my bookshelves can see, my interests are diverse, and I’m very inquisitive. I know all about these different topics, if only in name. Though I haven’t read all the books yet, I’m definitely interested in these areas—of course I am, that’s why the books are sitting there on my bookshelf. I may not understand everything that’s discussed in these books, but I’ve read huge volumes of works including an array of publications on complex issues. I’m not very talkative and I may look like a plain, ordinary guy, but inside I’m filled with all this incredible knowledge. Perhaps I can be described as an intellectual with depth.

—Fumio Sasaki, Goodbye, Things

how many hours does happiness last?

Tal Ben-Shahar, a popular Harvard lecturer in positive psychology, became Israeli national squash champion at the age of sixteen. His five years of six-hour daily practices paid off. But once he got home after the victory ceremony, he realized that the joy had worn off and he was left with a feeling of emptiness. He told people that the happiness lasted for only three hours.

—Fumio Sasaki, Goodbye, Things

say goodbye

There’s happiness in having less. That’s why it’s time to say goodbye to all our extra things.

—Fumio Sasaki, Goodbye, Things

how terribly sad

How terribly sad it was that people are made in such a way that they get used to something as extraordinary as living.

—Jostein Gaarder, The Solitaire Mystery