Quotes I love from talks, podcasts, or books. Left anonymous to be viewed impartially.
"We have the ability to be rational, to think, to invent, to discover, to care about each other in ways that other parts of the universe just don't care about each other. That capacity that we have, as fleeting as life is, it's up to us what to make of it."
"The lives we lead now are not dress rehearsals, they're the only performances we have. Therefore what matters is what is here: the people we know and love, the lives we can change, the good we can do for the world. That is all there is."
"Everyone you love in this world is now out of the room. So, in principle you know what it is like to be content in the physical absence of everyone you love in the world. The only way to make it intolerable is to fixate on how intolerable it is they're not in the room with you."
"The narrow conception of happiness that most of us have by default is something we are always trying to defend and shore up against all the other things in life threatening to undermine it. The one obvious point is it's not a safe play, it's perpetually under threat."
"Even just recognizing the impermanence of your mental states can transform your life. Every mental state you have ever had has arisen and then passed away. This is something people tend not to notice, because rather than merely 'feel' an emotion like anger, we spend our time thinking of all the reasons why we have every right to be angry. The conversation keeps this emotion in play for much longer than its natural half-life."
"If someone asks me a question I answer it, which in our culture is regarded as a perfectly improper thing to do."
"The past is a memory. It's a thought arising in the present. The future is merely anticipated; it is another thought arising now. What we truly have is this moment.
We spend most of our lives forgetting this truth, repudiating it, fleeing it, overlooking it. And the horror is that we succeed. We manage to never really connect with the present moment and find fulfillment there, because we're continually hoping to become happy in the future.
And the future never arrives."
"People don't feel that they simply are their bodies, they feel like they have bodies and their bodies are vehicles that they're riding around in. And they feel like they're behind their eyes in a way that they're not behind their knees."