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Grace Lee Boggs Quotes

Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Building community is to the collective as spiritual practice is to the individual.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “The only way to survive is by taking care of one another.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “We never know how our small activities will affect others through the invisible fabric of our connectedness. In this exquisitely connected world, it’s never a question of ‘critical mass.’ It’s always about critical connections.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “You cannot change any society unless you take responsibility for it, unless you see yourself as belonging to it and responsible for changing it.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “You don’t choose the times you live in, but you do choose who you want to be. And you do choose how you think.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “The most radical thing I ever did was to stay put.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “We can begin by doing small things at the local level, like planting community gardens or looking out for our neighbors. That is how change takes place in living systems, not from above but from within, from many local actions occurring simultaneously.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Don’t get stuck in old ideas. Keep recognizing that reality is changing and that your ideas have to change.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Love isn’t about what we did yesterday; it’s about what we do today and tomorrow and the day after.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “History is not the past. It is the stories we tell about the past. How we tell these stories – triumphantly or self-critically, metaphysically or dialectally – has a lot to do with whether we cut short or advance our evolution as human beings.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “A revolution that is based on the people exercising their creativity in the midst of devastation is one of the great historical contributions of humankind.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “The nation-state became powerful in the wake of the French Revolution, whereas the nation-state has become powerless in light of globalization.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Movements are born of critical connections rather than critical mass.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Talk and write in a way that encourages the mutual exchange of ideas and acts like a midwife to people birthing their own ideas.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Nonviolence is based on recognizing that all of us are human beings. And at a certain point we begin to learn that you don’t gather very much by making enemies out of people and not recognizing their humanity. Nonviolence is essentially based on recognizing the humanity in every one one of us.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Some people are afraid of gentrification, but what I see is young people want to live in a different world. And they see possibilities here. They see that rents are relatively cheap compared to places like New York and California.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “What time is it on the clock of the world?”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “It takes time for change to take place. But then when huge changes are taking place, they are extraordinary. And it requires a kind of philosophical thinking, thinking in terms of epochs.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Really, people are not a school of fish. Finding the leaders of the future is a question of recognizing those people who give leadership in a crisis.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “With the end of empire, we are coming to an end of the epoch of rights. We have entered the epoch of responsibilities, which requires new, more socially-minded human beings and new, more participatory and place-based concepts of citizenship and democracy.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “I am often asked what keeps me going after all these years. I think it is the realization that there is no final struggle. Whether you win or lose, each struggle brings forth new contradictions, new and more challenging questions. As Alice Walker put it in one of my favorite poems: I must love the questions themselves as Rilke said like locked rooms full of treasures to which my blind and groping key does not yet fit.1.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “A rebellion is something that is developing as an explosion coming out of the righteous grievances of a community of people.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “If we want to see change in our lives, we have to change things ourselves.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “I think at the time, my radicalization was not through growing up Chinese, but through the role that the black people were playing at the beginning of World War II, when they had started the “Double V for Victory” movement – for democracy at home as well as abroad.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “People in Detroit aren’t just urban gardening. They’re starting a new mode of education. They’re trying to give children the education to be “solutionaries” rather than people who are going to get jobs in the system. And that is a huge change, a cultural revolution.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “I think that deep in our hearts we know that our comforts, our conveniences are at the expense of other people.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “We need to undergo a very radical revolution in values. And we need to think about what it’s like to have become so materialistic that we think having a good job, and consuming like crazy to compensate for the dehumanization of the job, is living like a human being.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Our challenge, as we enter the new millennium, is to deepen the commonalities and the bonds between these tens of millions, while at the same time continuing to address the issues within our local communities by two-sided struggles that not only say “No” to the existing power structure but also empower our constituencies to embrace the power within each of us to crease the world anew.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Still, it becomes clearer every day that organizing or joining massive protests and demanding new policies fail to sufficiently address the crisis we face. They may demonstrate that we are on the right side politically, but they are not transformative enough. They do not change the cultural images or the symbols that play such a pivotal role in molding us into who we are.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “We are beginning to understand that the world is always being made fresh and never finished; that activism can be the journey rather than the arrival; that’s struggle doesn’t always have to be confrontational but can take the form of reaching out to find common ground with the many others in our society who are also seeking ways out from alienation, isolation, privatization, and dehumanization by corporate globalization.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “The main reason why Western civilization lacks Spirituality, or an awareness of our interconnectedness with one another and the universe, according to Gandhi, is that it has given priority to economic and technological development over human and community development.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “I was a Chinese American, an ethnic minority so small as to be almost invisible. He was an African American who was very conscious that the blood and sweat of his ancestors had made possible the rapid economic development of this country and who had already embarked on the struggle to ensure that his people would be among those deciding its economic and political future.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “I think our concept of revolution, in terms of getting the power to do things, is too focused on the state. We have a scenario of revolution that first, you know, comes from 1917, that first you take the state power, and then you change things. And we don’t realize it’s collapsed.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “We’re at a great transition point in terms of population, demographics, and what it means to be a human being.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “I think that rebellions arise out of anger, and they’re very short-lived.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “The struggle we’re dealing with these days, which, I think, is part of what the 60s represented, is how do we define our humanity?”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “How do we redefine education so that 30-50 percent of inner-city children do not drop out of school, thus ensuring that millions will end up in prison?”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “This capitalist society has not lasted forever; it’s only a few hundred years old.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “The physical threat posed by climate change represents a crisis that is not only material but also profoundly spiritual at its core because it challenges us to think seriously about the future of the human race and what it means to be a human being.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Look on yourself as a citizen in a kingdom of persons, he advised. Act always as if the maxim of your action could become a universal law, always treating mankind, as much in your own person as in that of another, as an end, never as a means.3.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “I think we’re not looking sufficiently at what is happening at the grassroots in the country. We have not emphasized sufficiently the cultural revolution that we have to make among ourselves in order to force the government to do differently. Things do not start with governments.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “I have learned to savor every minute of time with my four year old daughter not only because I know how quickly children grow up but also because I have no idea what state the world will be in when she is my age.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “The Sayings of Confucius: “At fifteen I thought only of study; at thirty I began playing my role; at forty I was sure of myself; at fifty I was conscious of my position in the universe; at sixty I was no longer argumentative; and now at seventy I can follow my heart’s desire without violating custom.”1.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “It’s really important that we get rid of the idea that protest will create change. We don’t realize that that kind of organizing worked only when the government was very strong, when the West ruled the world, relatively speaking.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Well, I would say that we’ve got to redefine democracy, that we have been stuck in concepts of representative democracy, that we believe that it’s getting other people to do things for us that we progress.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “In the 1950s I rarely went to a community meeting without Jimmy and would usually just listen or ask questions. Now, having worked in the city and socialized with Jimmy’s friends and Correspondence readers for years, I felt I had something to contribute. I was beginning to feel comfortable with the we pronoun, so comfortable that in FBI records of that period I am described as Afro-Chinese.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “I believe that we are at the point now, in the United States, where a movement is beginning to emerge.”
Grace Lee Boggs Quote: “Every crisis, actual or impending, needs to be viewed as an opportunity to bring about profound changes in our society. Going beyond protest organizing, visionary organizing begins by creating images and stories of the future that help us imagine and create alternatives to the existing system.”
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