Keep the channel open

Martha Graham, USA

(Submitted by The Art of Living Team)

There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and since there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique, and if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium, and will be lost. The world will not have it.

It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours, clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.

My own taste

Marcel Duchamp, France

(Submitted by Arlette Lecompte, France)

I have forced myself to contradict myself in order to avoid conforming to my own taste.

Invisible forces

Léopold Senghor, Senegal

(Submitted by Danuta Walenty, Poland)

Art is animated by invisible forces that rule the universe.


Parvin Heydari Nassab, Iran

(Submitted by the author)

Calligraphy is the moment in which the harsh heat of the desert, the strivings of our peoples, the thoughts and apprehensions of the Orient, the harmony of sensibility and meditation, are all made manifest on the blank page, to reveal a message of divine love and earthly beauty.


Nikos Kazantzakis, Greece

(Submitted by Daemon Demetriou, Greece)

You have the brush and the colours. Paint the Paradise and enter it.

The Most Beautiful Thing

Albert Einstein, USA

(Submitted by Julie Castello, USA)

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious - the knowledge of the existence of something unfathomable to us, the manifestation of the most profound reason coupled with the most brilliant beauty.

I cannot imagine a god that rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, or who has a will of the kind we experience in ourselves.

Why Literature?

Mario Vargas Llosa, Peru

(Submitted by the author)

We live in an era of knowledge specialisation, due to the prodigious development of science and technology, and the fragmentation of knowledge into innumerable paths and compartments, a cultural trend that will only be accentuated in years to come. Of course, specialisation brings great benefits, offering much more detailed research and experimentation; it is the engine of progress. But it also has a negative effect: it elides all those common denominators of culture through which men and women co-exist, communicate and feel a sense of solidarity.

Everyone Knows You’re Going to Live

Ama Reynolds, USA

(Submitted by the author)

(So you might as well start trying. – Regina Spektor)

You can choose your own adventure.
Life is difficult.
Happy families are all alike, Ishmael.
I sing the song of myself - why
Is the measure of love, loss?

Flip it. There are a thousand turns.
More. Take a self-help book off
The shelf. Or read the one by
Lorrie Moore. Moore’s is better
Than all of them.

Don’t be a writer, she says. If you can
Be anything else, anything else at all,
Just do it. You won’t regret it.

Some of us are not so lucky. That’s


Django Reinhardt, Belgium


David Lister, England

(Submitted by the author)

“He showed me a little thing the size of a hazelnut in the palm of my hand, and it was as round as a ball. I looked at it with my mind’s eye and thought, ‘What can this be?’ And the answer came, ‘It is all that is made!” ( Dame Julian of Norwich, born 1342).

One would think, at first sight, that there would be little connection between spiritual values and paperfolding. Paperfolding is essentially just a hobby or a craft; perhaps, even, an art. How can recreational manipulation of paper possibly have spiritual values?

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