A Short History of Medicine; 2000 B.C. - "Here, eat this root."; 1000 B.C. - "That root is heathen, say this prayer."; 1850 A.D. - "That prayer is superstition, drink this potion."; 1940 A.D. - "That potion is snake oil, swallow this pill."; 1985 A.D. - "That pill is ineffective, take this antibiotic."; 2000 A.D. - "That antibiotic is artificial. Here, eat this root.";
O Lord our God, help us tear their soldiers to bloody shreds with our shells; help us to cover their smiling fields with the pale forms of their patriot dead; help us to drown the thunder of the guns with the shrieks of their wounded, writhing in pain; help us to lay waste their humble homes with a hurricane of fire; help us to wring the hearts of their unoffending widows with unavailing grief; help us to turn them out roofless with their little children to wander unfriended the wastes of their desolated land in rags and hunger and thirst, sports of the sun flames of summer and the icy winds of winter, broken in spirit, worn with travail, imploring Thee for the refuge of the grave and denied it.
__Mark Twain, "The War Prayer"
God grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know it's me.
__Unknown Author, variation of an excerpt from "The Serenity Prayer" by Reinhold Neibuhr
I feel that art has something to do with the achievement of stillness in the midst of chaos. A stillness which characterizes prayer too, and the eye of the storm. I think art has something to do with an arrest of attention in the midst of distraction.
If you ride you know those moments when you have fed yourself into the traffic, felt the hashed-up asphalt rattle in the handlebars, held a lungful of air in a cloud of exhaust. Up ahead there are two parallel buses. With cat's whiskers, you measure the clearance down a doubtful alley. You swing wide, outflank that flower truck. The cross-street yellow light is turning red. You burst off the green like a surfer on a wave of metal. You have a hundred empty yards of Broadway to yourself.
__Chip Brown, "A Bike and a Prayer"