The July 2006 Edition of Street Spirit

A publication of the American Friends Service Committee


National AFSC AFSC Economic Justice BOSS Website



In this issue:

Corruption at Oakland Housing Authority

Shot Through the Heart in S.F.

Legal Challenge to Cruel Attacks on SF Homeless

GRIP's Shelter in Richmond

HUD Plans to Demolish Public Housing in New Orleans

Fresno Homeless Attacked

Stonewalling by Bush's ICH on Homeless Issues

Are We Not Our Brother's Keeper

Congress Refuses to Raise the Minimum Wage

Beyond Prisons: Challenge to the Prison System

Penal Servitude

The U.S. Racial Wealth Gap

Poor Working Conditions for Immigrants

AFSC Sues Defense Dept. for Surveillance

Surveillance and Orwell's 1984

Enron's Good Fight

Poor Leonard's Almanack: On Self-Realization

July Poetry of the Streets

Child Slavery on African Cocoa Farms

The Worth of Education in the Phillipines


June 2006

May 2006

April 2006

March 2006

February 2006

January 2006

November 2005

October 2005

September 2005

August 2005

July 2005

June 2005

May 2005

April 2005

March 2005

February 2005




Street Spirit is published by American Friends Service Committee.

All works are copyrighted by the authors.

The views expressed in Street Spirit are those of the individual authors alone, and not necessarily that of the American Friends Service Committee.

Poor Leonard's Almanack


Quotations and Original Thoughts
by Leonard Roy Frank
Street Spirit July 2006

1. Every living being seeks instinctively to complete itself.
HENRI AMIEL (Swiss philosopher), journal, 9 April 1856

2. No individual can arrive even at the threshold of his potentialities without a culture in which he participates. Conversely, no civilization has in it any element which in the last analysis is not the contribution of an individual.
RUTH BENEDICT (anthropologist, 1887-1948), quoted in Laurence J. Peter, editor, Peter's Quotations: Ideas for Our Time, 1977

3. Have patience, Candidate, as one who fears no failure, courts no success. Fix thy Soul's gaze upon the star whose ray thou art.
THE BOOK OF THE GOLDEN PRECEPTS (ancient Buddhist writing), translated by Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, 1889

4. Our discontent begins by finding false villains whom we can accuse of deceiving us. Next we find false heroes whom we expect to liberate us. The hardest, most discomfiting discovery is that each of us must emancipate himself.
DANIEL J. BOORSTIN (writer and librarian), The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-Events in America, 1961

5. What is most needed is a loving heart.
THE BUDDHA (6th cent. B.C.), The Three Baskets of Wisdom

6. Where the way is hardest, there go thou:
Follow your own path, and let people talk.
DANTE (Italian poet), "Purgatory," The Divine Comedy, 1321

7. The important thing is this: to be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become.
CHARLES DU BOS (French writer and critic), Approximations, 1922-1937

8. When one begins the transformative process, death and birth are imminent: the death of custom as authority, the birth of the self.
MARILYN FERGUSON (writer and poet), The Aquarian Conspiracy: Personal and Social Transformation in the 1980s, 1980

9. It is easier to live through someone else than to become complete yourself.
BETTY FRIEDAN (feminist leader and writer), The Feminine Mystique, 1983

10. The purpose of life is undoubtedly to know oneself. We cannot do it unless we learn to identify ourselves with all that lives. The sum total of that life is God. Hence the necessity of realizing God living within every one of us....
The instrument of this knowledge is boundless, selfless service.
MOHANDAS K. GANDHI (Indian spiritual/political leader), letter to Muriel Lester, 21 June 1932, quoted in Mahadev Desai, The Diary of Mahadev Desai, 1953

11. If a way to the Better there be, it exacts a full look at the Worst.
THOMAS HARDY (English writer), "In Tenebris II," Poems of the Past and Present, 1901

12. We are not going around in circles, we are going upwards. The path is a spiral.
HERMANN HESSE (German writer), Siddhartha, 1922

13. We cannot embrace the New Mind by just sitting around and talking about it. It demands that we alter not just our thinking, but our way of living down to the smallest details.
JEAN HUSTON (psychologist and writer), Manual for the Peacemaker: An Iroquois Legend to Heal Self & Society, 1995

14. Man is always something more than what he knows of himself. He is not what he is simply once and for all, but is a process; he is not merely an extant life, but is, within that life, endowed with possibilities through the freedom he possesses to make of himself what he will by the activities on which he decides.
KARL JASPERS (German psychiatrist and philosopher), Man in the Modern Age, 1933

15. The descent into the depths always seems to precede the ascent.
CARL G. JUNG (Swiss psychiatrist), "Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious," 1934, The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious, 1959

16. There are some things one can only achieve by a deliberate leap in the opposite direction.
FRANZ KAFKA (Austrian writer, 1883-1924), quoted in Gustav Janouch, Conversations with Kafka, 1953

17. On the pilgrim's path each man must become Moses, going on a vision quest to some mountaintop and returning with the ten or twenty commandments that he holds sacred. So long as we obey or break the rules that have been set up for us by the Giants -- Parents and other Authorities -- we remain good or bad children. Growing into the fullness of our humanity means that we become co-authors of the rules by which we will agree to have our lives judged.
SAM KEEN (psychologist), Fire in the Belly: On Being a Man, 1991

18. You don't go through a deep personal transformation without some kind of dark night of the soul.
SAM KEEN, radio interview, KPFA, Berkeley (California), 19 October 1995

19. The spiritual journey is one that we must take "alone together," in the same way that a good marriage involves a dance between solitude and communion. The life of the spirit entails a continuous alternation between retreating into oneself and going out into the world: it's an inward-outward journey. There is a solitary part to it, but that solitude helps us to develop richer and more in-depth relationships with our friends, our children, our community, and the political world.
SAM KEEN, Scott London radio interview, Insight & Outlook series, The Sun, October 1999

20. One ought to be mixed up with the world and to be able to wash one's hands of it -- to be part of the world and also outside it. One [needs] to be both involved and detached at the same time.
THE KOTZKER (Hasidic rabbi, 1787-1859), quoted in Abraham Joshua Heschel, A Passion for Truth, 1973

21. The turning point in the process of growing up is when you discover the core of strength within you that survives all hurt.
MAX LERNER (journalist), "Faubus and Little Rock," The Unfinished Country, 1959

22. As William James points out, the first stage in the process [of self-renewal] is the realization that "there is something wrong about us as we naturally stand." Without this realization, nothing happens.
P. W. MARTIN (British psychologist), Experiment in Depth: A Study of the Work of Jung, Eliot and Toynbee, 1955

23. It is only by the breaking up of the established pattern that the process of individuation becomes possible. On the other hand, individuation is not likely to come of itself. From the very outset anyone undertaking the experiment in depth is well advised to do everything in his power to bring into operation two great integrative factors: the fellowship of a working group; and the contact with the deep center.
P. W. MARTIN (British psychologist), Experiment in Depth: A Study of the Work of Jung, Eliot and Toynbee, 1955

24. The good news is not primarily of hardship and of suffering, but of creative experience, an immense enlargement and enrichment of life. No aspect of the experiment in depth is more characteristic than this perceiving of everything, the inward world and the outward world alike, with eyes that, for the first time, see. That the way is hard is certain. But no less certain is its wonder. "Behold, I make all things new."
P. W. MARTIN, Experiment in Depth: A Study of the Work of Jung, Eliot and Toynbee, 1955

25. Three words were in the captain's heart. He shaped them soundlessly with his trembling lips, as he had not breath to spare for a whisper, "I am lost." And having given up life, the captain suddenly began to live.
CARSON McCULLERS (writer), Reflections in a Golden Eye, 1941

26. The development of the individual can be described as a succession of new births at consecutively higher levels.
MARIA MONTESSORI (Italian physician and educator, 1870-1952), as paraphrased by E. M. Standing, preface to Maria Montessori: Her Life and Work, 1957

27. Revaluation of all values!
FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE (German philosopher), closing words, The Anti-Christ, 1895

28. The way upward from inertia to illumination passes through the sphere of action.
SWAMI PRABHAVANANDA (Indian monk and teacher), "The Sermon on the Mount -- IV," published in Christopher Isherwood, editor, Vedanta for the Western World, 1945

29. There is no failure in the spiritual life, as long as we do not give up the fight.
SWAMI PRABHAVANANDA, "The Sermon on the Mount -- V," ibid.

30. I read and walked for miles at night along the beach, writing bad blank verse and searching endlessly for someone wonderful who would step out of the darkness and change my life. It never crossed my mind that that person could be me.
ANNA QUINDLEN (journalist), "At the Beach," Living Out Loud, 1988

31. If life is to be fully human it must serve some end which seems, in some sense, outside human life, some end which is impersonal and above mankind, such as God or truth or beauty. Those who best promote life do not have life for their purpose. They aim rather at what seems like a gradual incarnation, a bringing into our human existence of something eternal, something that appears to imagination to live in a heaven remote from strife and failure and the devouring jaws of Time.
BERTRAND RUSSELL (English philosopher), Principles of Social Reconstruction, 1916

32. King Henry: Presume not that I am the thing I was;
For God doth know, so shall the world perceive,
That I have turn'd away my former self.
SHAKESPEARE, Henry IV, Part II, 1597

33. I had become a new person; and those who knew the old person laughed at me. The only man who behaved sensibly was my tailor: he took my measure anew every time he saw me, whilst all the rest went in with their old measurements and expected them to fit me.
GEORGE BERNARD SHAW (Irish playwright), Man and Superman, 1903

34. Autonomy... is freedom to develop one's self -- to increase one's knowledge, improve one's skills, and achieve responsibility for one's conduct. And it is freedom to lead one's own life, to choose among alternative courses of action so long as no injury to others results.
THOMAS S. SZASZ (Hungarian-born U.S. psychiatrist), The Ethics of Psychoanalysis: The Theory and Method of Autonomous Psychotherapy, 1965

35. Those we love can but walk down to the pier with us - the voyage we must make alone.
WILLIAM MAKEPEACE THACKERAY (English writer, 1811-1863), quoted in Norman Lockridge, editor, World's Wit and Wisdom, 1936

36. Our molting season, like that of the fouls, must be a crisis in our lives.
HENRY DAVID THOREAU (philosopher), "Economy," Walden; or Life in the Woods, 1854

37. We must walk consciously only part way toward our goal, and then leap in the dark to our success.
HENRY DAVID THOREAU, journal, 11 March 1859

38. Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches,... devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown,... re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem.
WALT WHITMAN (poet), preface (1855) to Leaves of Grass, 1855-1892

39. One of the signs of passing youth is the birth of a sense of fellowship with other human beings as we take our place among them.
VIRGINIA WOOLF (writer), "Hours in a Library," Times Literary Supplement (London), 30 Nov. 1916

40. Men can starve from a lack of self-realization as much as they can from a lack of bread.
RICHARD WRIGHT (writer), Native Son, 1940

41. The great enemy of self-realization is self-satisfaction.

42. The inner journey begins the moment we realize that there's more to reality than meets the eye and that we are capable of knowing and doing everything needed to reach our destination.

43. Begin within.

44. The light is reached not by turning back from the darkness, but by going through it.

45. In everyone lies a poet buried young waiting to be resurrected.

46. The finest poetry draws us into the mystery and sometimes beyond it.


Leonard Roy Frank is the editor of Random House Webster's Quotationary. His "Frankly Quoted" column, distributed freely over the Internet every month, consists of 30-35 quotes and original thoughts, mostly about current events. To get on the "Frankly Quoted" listserve, send your e-mail address.

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