Saturday, February 21, 2009

Interesting words from Nikki Giovanni

An poem called "Choices" from a discussion between Nikki Giovanni and Bill Moyers.

"if i can't do
what i want to do
then my job is to not
do what i don't want
to do

"it's not the same thing
but it's the best i can

"if i can't have
what i want then
my job is to want
what i've got
and be satisfied
that at least there
is something more
to want

"since i can't go
where i need
to go then i must go
where the signs point
though always understanding
parallel movement
isn't lateral

"when i can't express
what i really feel
i practice feeling
what i can express
and none of it is equal
i know
but that's why mankind
alone among the animals
learns to cry"

Parker Palmer on Bill Moyers

Interesting discussion on dreams and reality and the dangers of living too far in either direction.
BILL MOYERS: You've written that we all have to learn to live in what you call the tragic gap. Now, some people are going to find that notion very un-American then because it flies in the face of the fundamental American assumption of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. What is the tragic gap? And who wants to live there?

PARKER PALMER: Well, I think the pursuit of happiness is the pursuit of reality because illusion never leaves us ultimately happy. And I think the opportunity now is for us to get real. And I think that's going to make us, in the long run, more happy. The tragic gap, and I call it tragic not because it's sad. It is. But more fundamentally because it's an inevitable part of the human condition.

Tragic in the sense that the Greeks talked about it. Tragic in the sense that Shakespeare talked about it. The tragic gap is the gap between what's really going on around us, the hard conditions in which our lives are currently immersed, and what we know to be possible from our own experience.

We don't see it every day. We may not see it very often. But we know it's a possibility among real people and real space and time. Now, what happens when we don't learn to hold the tension between what is and what we know to be possible?

Marc Andreessen on Charlie Rose

Lots of tidbits on the world of the Internet and technology. Link