Doug Bruns

Friday Notes

In Books, Happiness, Life, Wisdom on April 13, 2012 at 2:54 pm

Friday notes (entries from aforementioned notebooks and journals):

“Unless a person takes charge of them, both work and free time are likely to be disappointing.” Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi.

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Entry dated 10.21.02 ~ Henry David Thoreau started his journal on this date in 1865. It grew to over two million words.

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Yesterday my friend Dingle told me that he woke up and thought: “Life is not necessarily about being happy.” And with that a month-long depression lifted. Which reminded me of a line I’d noted from the novel Prague Arthur Phillips: “John understood that some things mattered and some things did not and that the happy people in this world were those who could easily and rapidly distinguish between the two.” (p.188)

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“The prophet is a fool, the man of spirit is mad.” Hosea 9:7

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From a New York Times Book Review (10.5.2003) of Brenda Wineapple’s biography Nathanal Hawthorne, a Life: [Hawthorne] was constitutionally opposed to enthusiasm…”

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From a notebook entry of Bruce Chatwin: “Do we not gaze coldly at our clutter and say, ‘If these object express my personality, then I hate my personality.'”

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┬áZen koan: The Master and the Grandmaster are in a boat going to an island. The master asked, “Is the water going or is the boat going?”

The Grandmaster answered, “The boat is not going and the water is not going.”

“Then what is going?” asked the master.

The Grandmaster held out his hankerchief.

“When did you become like this?” asked the master.

“For a long time,” said the Grandmaster.


Have a nice weekend. And thanks for reading.

  1. Nice bits and pieces – I don’t know what I’d do without my notebooks. Sometimes it feels like more of my life is in there than out.

    • I certainly understand that, Bill. My goal with my “micro-essays” is to compose an original piece at least three times weekly. My journals are my idea-mills. I’d be lost without them. Maybe it’s better to page randomly through them, maybe not. That’s an observation for a future comment. Thanks for stopping in and commenting.

  2. I do not know Bruce Chatwin. Perhaps this is a new interesting acquaintance?

    notebook entry: Excellence….Christian: humility and love
    . Roman Stoic: adherence to one’s duty
    Pagan (Homer): gratitude and wonder

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