Sunday, May 25, 2008

Writings which made me pause

Recently, I came across the following two passages, taken from two separate works. Each of them made me pause and reconsider how I see life around me. The first is a reminder of an old and familiar teaching -- this concept of personal greed and how it can enslave us rather than free us. The second reminded me of the human connection. In this fast paced world, even the fruit we eat was harvested by someone's hands. Someone out there toiled to bring me momentary enjoyment and nourishment. It's just another reminder, then, to live life with an attitude of gratitude.

"Once you start to see through the myth of status, possessions, and unlimited consumption as a path to happiness, you'll find that you have all kinds of freedom and time. It's like a deal you can make with the universe: I'll give up greed for freedom. Then you can start putting your time to good use."
~ David Edwards, "Nothing To Lose But Our Illusions"

"Strawberries are too delicate to be picked by machine. The perfectly ripe ones even bruise at too heavy a human touch. It hit her then that every strawberry she had ever eaten -- every piece of fruit -- had been picked by calloused human hands. Every piece of toast with jelly represented someone's knees, someone's aching back and hips, someone with a bandanna on her wrist to wipe away the sweat. Why had no one told her about this before?
~ Alison Luterman, "What They Came For"

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