When a heart is really alive,

then it is able to think live things. There is one heart all whose thoughts are strong, happy creatures, and whose very dreams are lives. When some pray, they lift heavy thoughts from the ground, only to drop them on it again; others send up their prayers in living shapes, this or that, the nearest likeness to each. All live things were thoughts to begin with, and are fit therefore to be used by those that think. When one says to the great Thinker: –“Here is one of thy thoughts: I am thinking it now!” that is a prayer – a word to the big heart from one of its own little hearts.

– Mr. Raven to the Narrator,
Lilith, chapter V,
George MacDonald

As in all sweetest music,

a tinge of sadness was in every note. Nor do we know how much of the pleasures even of life we owe to the intermingled sorrows. Joy cannot unfold the deepest truths, although deepest truth must be deepest joy. Cometh white-robed Sorrow, stooping and wan, and flingeth wide the doors she may not enter. Almost we linger with Sorrow for very love.

Phantastes, chapter X,
George MacDonald

Don’t take notes on what a speaker says.

Take notes on the thoughts you get from what you hear. You must learn to listen less and think more, because the more you listen, the more you memorize, and try to be smarter. The more you think, the more you realize that it doesn’t do you any good to be smart. It’s better to be plain and simple and real.

– Charlie “Tremendous” Jones,
The KellyGram, April 2010 issue.

Fallen angel dragons

First, everything in this fallen created order “answers to” something unfallen […] In other words, the dragon is the archtypical emblem of sly, crafty, rebellion – and this goes back to the Garden. Satan is that ancient dragon. If we read our Bibles rightly, we will pay attention to the symbols. Honor the symbols, people.

But of course Satan was a fallen something, and that something was, before he fell, an unfallen version of that same thing. My personal view is that he was one of the seraphim, which means that the seraphim are glorious, unfallen dragons, privileged to cry holy, holy, holy in the presence of God.

But in this world, the one we live in, dragons still mean what they mean. That meaning was assigned to us. Shifting the meaning of everything around in this metamorphing way seems to me to be not so much a testimony to our literary prowess as to the continued craftiness of the serpent.

Doug Wilson

(food for my thought and a warning as well.)

I don’t usually expect to discover signs of wildlife to appear uninvited in my 22nd floor apartment, but tonight I was surprised to find a tiny grey feather on the side in my kitchen– and it got me wondering about the little bird that came to visit…and just how high birds fly…and how incredible it is they always know where they’re going and the best way to get there…

– Sh. W., via Facebook

the words ‘alone’, ‘lonely’ and ‘loneliness’

are three of the most powerful words in the english language. those words say that we are human; they are like the words hunger and thirst. but they are not words about the body, they are words about the soul…

…there is an entire world inside yourself, and if you let yourself, you can get so deep inside it, you will forget the way to the surface. other people keep our souls alive, just like food and water does with our body.

– attributed to Don Miller
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In the brain, three of these functions

are learning concepts and facts (memorizing), remembering and thinking. Learning is the process of absorbing information and forming patterns in the brain. Remembering is the process of recalling these patterns and creating mental images of what we remember. Thinking consists of taking these structures and creating new structures reflecting something “new”, a new concept or a new fact. Today, computer memory is much more reliable then human memory while computer thinking is worse. So its interesting to consider a new educational paradigm where we shift the emphasis from memorizing-remembering to thinking, relying on search engines and the internet for the memory as opposed to traditional learning, i.e. content mastery via the memorization route. The brain is highly complex and only now are we beginning to understand the basics of memory. Understanding thinking seems to be quite a way in the future.”

Frank Starmer