Quotes: Be the Change

Be the Change 3 by Noah Smith

Matthew 6:10 (NRSV)
Your kingdom come. Your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.

Give me one hundred men who fear nothing but sin and desire nothing but God, and I care not whether they be clergyman or laymen, they alone will shake the gates of Hell and set up the kingdom of Heaven upon the earth. – John Wesley

I said Somebody should do something about that. Then I realized I am somebody.
– Lily Tomlin

There are some things in our social system which I am proud to be maladjusted and to which I suggest that you, too, ought to be maladjusted. I never intend to adjust myself to the viciousness of mob-rule. I never intend to adjust myself to the evils of segregation and the crippling effects of discrimination. I never intend to adjust myself to the tragic inequalities of an economic system which takes necessities from the masses to give luxuries to the classes. I never intend to become adjusted to the madness of militarism and the self-defeating method of physical violence. I call upon you to be maladjusted… the world is in desperate need of maladjustment. Through such maladjustment we will be able to emerge from the bleak and desolate midnight of man’s inhumanity to man into the bright glittering daybreak of freedom and justice. – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

You must be the change you wish to see in the world. -Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Birju Pandya believes there are 4 ideas you have to believe if you seek to “be the change you wish to see in the world”:

  1. Real change requires patience: It takes time to move others through love (rather than by carrot or stick), but the results are real and lasting.
  2. Real change is decentralized/local: The revolution will not be provided by governments or corporations.
  3. Real change cannot be traditionally measured: We are a society that believes strongly in measurable cause and effect. However, the world doesn’t work that way — each result is born of millions of conscious and unconscious acts.
  4. Real change is never complete: Each person in society is a seeker. As nobody has all the answers, it is incumbent on all of us to humbly support each other in being better people.

Is there some part of you that has become bound—that recognizes what is holy and craves its blessing, but fears the change that would be involved? Is there a habit, a belief, a relationship, an aspect of your life that has you in its grip that confines you, that limits the freedom with which you move through this world—perhaps without your even realizing it? Can you imagine what release would look like? Is there a destructive force at work in a person or system or institution you’re connected with, that you might be called to engage? Can you identify a first step that would help you confront what confines you or those around you?- Jan Richardson, The Painted Prayerbook

May the Spirit of Life move you from apathy to action,
from observing to doing, from despair to hope.
May the Spirit of life bless you
with both the pain and the joy of change –
the change the world needs,
the change for which you pray,
the change you are becoming through Jesus Christ.
– Sam Hamilton-Poore, Earth Gospel: A Guide to Prayer for God’s Creation

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1 thought on “Quotes: Be the Change

  1. Interesting post and I fully agree, particularly the last pagprraah on the nature of evil, something that can be analyzed. Too often we revert to cliche and superstition as if people do bad things because they are evil and they are evil because they do bad things. Psychologists who’ve interviewed some so-called Islamic extremists tell us that they are no more crazy in the psychological sense than anyone serving in the military which is a socially acceptable or politically correct (we call them heroes) institutionalization of murder, always loudly proclaimed as being exclusively defensive.But I’ve returned to some books I read long ago by psychiatrist R. D. Laing who has a unique take on what normal and crazy really are. Laing has suggested that normal is just a narrow but socially acceptable range of crazy that tends to make our day-to-day lives easier.The brotherhood of man is evoked by particular men according to their circumstances. But it seldom extends to all men. In the name of our freedom and our brotherhood we are prepared to blow up the other half of mankind and to be blown up in our turn.Insanity is a perfectly rational adjustment to an insane worldNormality highly values its normal man. It educates children to lose themselves and to become absurd, and thus to be normal. Normal men have killed perhaps 100, 000 of their fellow normal men in the last fifty years.I keep going back to the Ft. Hood thing which seems to have given rise to a great deal of dullish and dimly perceptive talk such as that we’re hearing from Brooks.The Ft. Hood shooter just chose a different side and his depair over the weight of the normal insanity all around him caused him to snap and commit extreme acts. It arose from the same sort of dissonance that might be had by anyone in the military who came to know one of them as a human in contrast to one ethnic, homogeneous them . He wasn’t necessarily buoyed by military training and discipline or those around him marching in lock step.And by the way, David Brooks doesn’t get much. I am still wondering why we can take guns to National Parks but in a military base that is considered too dangerous for those with training. Still, I doubt others with guns would have deterred the Ft. Hood shooter.

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