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Wendell Berry Quotes
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Wendell Berry Quote: “A man ought to study the wilderness of a place before applying to it the ways he learned in another place.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Grandmam came back from that distance in time that separates grandmothers from their grandchildren and made herself a mother to me.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “He stands under them, looks up, sees, knows, and knows that he does not know.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “The world, which God looked at and found entirely good, we find none too good to pollute entirely and destroy piecemeal.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “The modern mind longs for the future as the medieval mind longed for Heaven. The great aim of modern life has been to improve the future – or even just to reach the future, assuming that the future will inevitably be “better.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “The strangest of all the doctrines of the cult of competition, in which admittedly there must be losers as well as winners, is that the result of competition is inevitably good for everybody, that altruistic ends may be met by a system without altruistic motives or altruistic means.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “There should be no relenting in our efforts to influence politics and politicians. But in the name of honesty and sanity we must recognize the limits of politics.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “The gait most congenial to agrarian thought and sensibility is walking. It is the gait best suited to paying attention, most conservative of land and equipment, and most permissive of stopping to look or think. Machines, companies, and politicians “run”. Farmers studying their fields travel at a walk.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “For what seemed a long time Mat knelt there with his father’s dead wrist in his hand, while his mind arrived and arrived and yet arrived at that place and time and that body lying still on the soiled and bloodied stones.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “As long as we insist on relating to it strictly on our own terms-as strange to us or subject to us-the wilderness is alien, threatening, fearful.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Any abundance, in any amount, is illusory if it does not safeguard its producers.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Out of context,” as Wes Jackson has said, “the best minds do the worst damage.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Maury’s mind was practical, solidly founded on history, memory, and experience. It was in no way academic or theoretical. He did not substitute vocabulary for knowledge.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “We have become blind to the alternatives to violence.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “I see all that we have ruined in order to have, all that was owned for a lifetime to be destroyed forever. Where are the sleeps that escape such dreams?”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Invest in the millenium.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Oversimplified moral certainties – always requiring hostility, always potentially violent – isolate us from mercy, pity, peace, and love and leave us lonely and dangerous.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “People who thus set their lives against destruction have necessarily confronted in themselves the absurdity that they have recognized in their society.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “And there is no use in saying that if we can invent the nuclear bomb and fly to the moon, we can solve hunger and related problems of land use. Epic feats of engineering require only a few brilliant technicians and a lot of money. But feeding a world of people year to year for a long time requires cultures of husbandry fitted to the nature of millions of unique small places – precisely the kind of cultures that industrialism has purposely disvalued, uprooted, and destroyed.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “We have forgotten that Vietnam, and Iraq resent being invaded and know the ground better than we do.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “We are all to some extent the products of an exploitive society, and it would be foolish and self-defeating to pretend that we do not bear its stamp.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “The way we are, we are members of each other. All of us. Everything. The difference ain’t in who is a member and who is not, but in who knows it and who don’t.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “If you can read and have more imagination than a doorknob, what need do you have for a ‘movie version’ of a novel?”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Good farmers, who take seriously their duties as stewards of Creation and of their land’s inheritors, contribute to the welfare of society in more ways than society usually acknowledges, or even knows. These farmers produce valuable goods, of course; but they also conserve soil, they conserve water, they conserve wildlife, they conserve open space, they conserve scenery.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “If the white man has inflicted the wound of racism upon black men, the cost has been that he would receive the mirror image of that wound into himself. As the master, or as a member of the dominant race, he has felt little compulsion to acknowledge or speak of it; the more painful it has grown the more deeply he has hidden it within himself. But the wound is there, and is a profound disorder, as great a damage in his mind as it is in his society.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “As much as any of the old-timers, he regarded the Depression as not over and done with but merely absent for a while, like Halley’s comet.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “This is the justice that we are learning from the ecologists: you cannot damage what you are dependent upon without damaging yourself.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Unless you absolutely have got to do it, don’t buy anything new.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Let me say and not mourn: the world lives in the death of speech and sings there.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “The shoddy work of despair, the pointless work of pride, equally betray Creation. They are wastes of life.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “The corporate approach to agriculture or manufacturing or medicine or war increasingly undertakes to help at the risk of harm, sometimes of great harm. And once the risk of harm is appraised as “acceptable,” the result often is absurdity: We destroy a village in order to save it; we destroy freedom in order to save it; we destroy the world in order to live in it.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “A good community, in other words, is a good local economy.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “If conservationists will attempt to resume responsibility for their need to eat, they will be led back fairly directly to all their previous concerns for the welfare of nature.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “I have books to read, and much to sit and watch. I try not to let good things go by unnoticed.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Children learned about the adult world by participating in it in a small way, by doing a little work and making a little money – a much more effective, because pleasurable, and a much cheaper method than the present one of requiring the adult world to be learned in the abstract in school. One’s.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “But thinking of Mattie’s marriage, I saw too how a marriage, in bringing two people into each other’s presence, must include loneliness and error. I imagined a moment when the husband and wife realize that their marriage includes their faults, that they do not perfect each other, and that in making their marriage they also fail it and must carry to the grave things they cannot give away.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “The constructions of language, which is to say the constructions of thought, are formed within experience, not the other way around.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “It seemed to us that we’d never thought of him before as a man who would die. He never had thought of himself in that way. Until that year, although he’d cursed his weakness and his age, he’d either ignored the idea of his death or had refused to believe in it. He’d only thought of himself as living.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “There are lots of bad things that can happen to a food economy that’s both extensive and centralized. There’s no substitute for petroleum. To have a growth economy based on a declining fuel supply is bound to be stressful.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “After you have said “thy will be done,” what more can be said?”
Wendell Berry Quote: “He was all show, and he had the conviction, as such people do, that show is the same as substance. He didn’t think he was fooling other people; he had fooled himself.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “This is the man who will be my grandfather – the man who will be the man who was my grandfather. The tenses slur and slide under the pressure of collapsed time.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “We weren’t allowing our hopes to become expectations. Expectations are tempting, pleasant, maybe necessary. They are scary too, once you have had some experience. They are not necessarily and not always a bucket of smoke, but they can be and are even likely to be.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “When “husbandry” becomes “science,” the lowly has been exalted and the rustic has become urbane. Purporting to increase the sophistication of the humble art of farming, this change in fact brutally oversimplifies it.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Uncle Burley said hills always looked blue when you were far away from them. That was a pretty color for hills; the little houses and barns and fields looked so neat and quiet tucked against them. It made you want to be close to them. But he said that when you got close they were like the hills you’d left, and when you looked back your own hills were blue and you wanted to go back again. He said he reckoned a man could wear himself out going back and forth.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “Never forget: we are alive within mysteries.” – Wendell Berry.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “A man who does not ask to much become the promise of his land. His marriage married to his place, he waits and does not stray.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “He went through the old motions of his life, taking care of what needed caring for, keeping mostly quiet about what was on his mind. But his hard waiting changed him; you could see it in his face.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “The environment,” as we call it, is intimately with us. We’re in it. It’s in us. But also we are it, and it is us.”
Wendell Berry Quote: “It is the man who can think of no alternative to his enslavement who is truly a slave.”
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