I’ve written about living in the present, stopping to smell the roses, enjoying what life has for us today, no matter how much better we wish it were. Count each day as a blessing no matter what. It is a gift those who are gone wish they still had.
We have a tendency to trample on our lives by regretting the past, dreading the future, or living only for the future… We’re always living somewhere but this present moment. ~~ Peter Matthiessen, Filmaker
Someone once said, “Hope is the cruelest of the evils that escaped Pandora’s box.” But there’s a differing perspective to that thought as expressed by a 19th century self-help author. In his mid-forties Orison Marden narrowly escaped losing his life in a hotel fire. The blaze destroyed nearly fifteen years of the fruits of his labor with the loss of over 5000 pages of manuscripts he had written. A contemporary wrote: Having nothing but his nightshirt on when he escaped from the fire, he went down the street to provide himself with necessary clothing. As soon as this had been attended to, he bought a twenty-five cent notebook, and, while the ruins of the hotel were still smoking, began to rewrite from memory the manuscript of his dream book. Despite being overwhelmed and heartbroken, rather than give up, he moved forward.
That book Pushing to the Front was published in 1894 and became at the time the single greatest runaway classic in the history of personal development books. It was read by U.S. presidents and English Prime Minsters. Businessmen like Henry Ford, Thomas Edison and J.P. Morgan cited his work as inspirational. Orison went on to write fifty or more books and booklets during his career. In 1897 he created Success Magazine which continues today with a monthly circulation of 500,000. Marden is considered the inspiration for dozens of modern authors of self-help and motivation. While each of his books produced dozens of famous quotes, this is just one of them.
There is no medicine like hope, no incentive so great, and no tonic so powerful as expectation of something better tomorrow. ~~ Orison Swett Marden
I shared this quote a couple of years ago in this forum. It came from a distant cousin of mine who reminds us to remember when you wake each morning, it’s a brand new day!
My cousin’s name is Marion. He was a big man, like many in my family are. A masculine kind of a guy larger than life. My family and friends loved him, and so did I. He was all-American and symbolized our family values. This quote appears on his headstone. My cousin was born Marion Robert Morrison and would become an American icon known as the legendary actor John Wayne.
Tomorrow is the most important thing in life. Comes into us at midnight very clean. It’s perfect when it arrives and it puts itself in our hands. It hopes we’ve learned something from yesterday.
This is dedicated to the memory of all the heroes. Not just those from my school days, and those from my days in the military during the Vietnam era, all who died too soon, but especially in remembrance of the nameless, forgotten ones. From wars and battles long past.
But to the hero, when his sword
Has won the battle for the free,
Thy voice sounds like a prophet’s word;
And in its hollow tones are heard
The thanks of millions yet to be.
~~ Marco Bozzaris, verse by Fitz-Greene Halleck, American Poet
Although it’s a Christmas classic the movie It’s a Wonderful Life wasn’t actually released to theaters until after Christmas on January 7th, 1947, 67 years ago today.*
Since the time I was a young boy lying on the floor and watching the old movies of the 30’s and 40’s, on a black and white television, I’ve always loved actor Jimmy Stewart. It was my mother’s fondness for him that initially led me to this discovery. Having my own roots in a small western Pennsylvania community, only 60 miles from Jimmy’s hometown, also helped to cement my affection for him.
But somehow, inexplicably one of Stewart’s greatest movies — It’s a Wonderful Life — went unnoticed by me until sometime in the 1980’s.