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The greatest source of happiness is ... alvin January 29, 2020 - 9:11am

“The greatest source of happiness is the ability to be grateful at all times.”

~ Zig Ziglar (and many others)

“Sometimes I think of Frank as the catcher in the rye”

“Sometimes I think of Frank as the catcher in the rye, standing at the edge of the cliff, trying to save the world.”

~ Catherine talking about Frank, in Millennium

(Holden: “Anyway, I keep picturing all these little kids playing some game in this big field of rye and all. Thousands of little kids, and nobody’s around — nobody big, I mean — except me. And I’m standing on the edge of some crazy cliff. What I have to do, I have to catch everybody if they start to go over the cliff — I mean if they’re running and they don’t look where they’re going I have to come out from somewhere and catch them. That’s all I’d do all day. I’d just be the catcher in the rye and all. I know it’s crazy, but that’s the only thing I’d really like to be.”)

Quotes about work and Zen (practicing Zen at work)

For many years I struggled with how to combine two of my main interests, Zen and work. I have read that the Zen mind is the mind before thinking, so it seems like Zen and work must be totally unrelated. Over time I came to understand phrases like, “When working, just work.”

This article contains a collection of quotes that have been helpful to me in understanding the relationship between Zen and work. Please note that I don’t wrap each quote in double quotes, and I also try to attribute each quote to the correct author/speaker. If you’re interested in how to combine Zen and work, I hope you’ll find them helpful.

“Don’t you hate talking to sick people?”

A quote from the first episode of the tv series, The Dead Zone:

“Don’t you hate talking to sick people? You never know what to say. Just try and be cheerful, I guess, right?”

During one of my hospital stays in 2015, a nurse who was nearly named Amanda stopped in several times to talk to me, both when she was checking my vitals, and a couple of times on her breaks. We talked about life, death, and things in between; deep, honest conversations.

When individuals are too self-centered they tend to be prone to fear alvin November 30, 2019 - 3:11pm

“When individuals are too self-centered, they tend to be prone to fear, suspicion, anxiety and anger. Compassion and restraining from harming others act as an antidote to this.”

~ the Dalai Lama

“I think your heart grows back bigger”

“Okay, well, here’s my story, here’s what you need to know. I’m just divorced and I had my heart broken badly by a woman that I really loved. But I think your heart grows back bigger. You know? Once you get the shit beat out of you, and the universe lets your heart expand that way. And I think that’s the function of all this pain and heartache that we all go through, you know, you gotta go through that to come out to a better place and that’s how I see it, anyway.”

One of the many great quotes from my favorite movie of the now, Must Love Dogs.

To be a programmer is to develop a carefully managed relationship with error

“To be a programmer is to develop a carefully managed relationship with error. There’s no getting around it. You either make your accommodations with failure, or the work will become intolerable.”

~ Ellen Ullman (via this tweet)

This quote makes me think of all those years of exception-handling with Java. I never knew there was a better way to handle errors, so I developed a strategy of letting my exceptions bubble up to the controller level (as in model/view/controller), where I would deal with them. These days I know I can use Option/Some/None in Scala, as well as Try/Success/Failure.