Wisdom on Timing, Labels and More: Must-Read Links

Welcome to a new week on The Wisdom Daily. Dive into some of the most fascinating reads (quoted here) that we’ve spotted elsewhere – including insightful perspectives on what constitutes a miracle, how much siblings shape our personality, where modern-day philosophy is thriving, why boredom helps enrich our lives and more. Whatever’s transpiring in your life, may you find the words of wisdom you need.


1. Once Upon a Tablet

“I travel all the time. I’m on a plane almost every week. I carry a library with me on my tablet. Do you know how much of a miracle that is to me? I come from a people for whom reading was punishable by whipping or death just three generations ago. You feel me? And I am able to travel every week with any book I choose at my disposal and I live in a world where that’s possible. That’s a miracle as far as I’m concerned.”

-LeVar Burton, Reading Rainbow Knows Happily Ever After” (CNet)


2. A Childhood Theory Grows Up

“So much within our personalities is shaped not just by when we’re born into our families, but by how we’re treated by those family members. Could the middle-child experience truly be so universal within each family? Or the first- or last-born experience, for that matter? Seems unlikely. In that way, this latest study – which appears to contradict prevailing wisdom and stereotypes – makes a whole lot of sense.”

-Heidi Stevens, “Birth Order Has No Meaningful Effect on Personality” (Chicago Tribune)


3. The Saint Next Door

“Compassion is the adjective Fred Rogers used when asked how he wanted to be remembered, and it is the practice that he tried to instill in his viewers so that they would become peacemakers… It doesn’t take a great leap to see Rogers as a saint. He was so patient and compassionate and accepting. But Rogers himself was aware that all of us are morally complex, a beautiful combination of saint and sinner.”

-Michael Long, on his biography of Mister Rogers (Religion Dispatches)


4. Deep Thoughts

“Is there reason to think that journal articles are uniformly better for philosophical reflection than videos, interactive demonstrations, blog posts or multi-party conversations on Facebook?”

-Eric Schwitzgebel, “Philosophy via Facebook? Why not?” (The Los Angeles Times)


5. Swing into Action

“There will never be any guarantee of success, and even inactivity is a decision. When you do nothing, and don’t take the risk you’re contemplating, you’re taking another kind of a risk – of standing still, getting stuck, or missing out.”

-Sarah Mahoney, “Is Perfect Timing a Big Fat Myth?” (Life Reimagined)


6. The Whole Truth

“People cannot simply be defined by one word. You can tell me she’s transgender, but leave out that she’s an amazing photographer and even had some of her photos published in a magazine. You can tell me he died of a heroin overdose, yet fail to mention that throughout the course of his life he frequently volunteered at the soup kitchen and, even on the coldest night of the year, would more than willingly give you the coat, sweater, shirt and undershirt off his back if you looked like you needed some warmth.”

– Ji Thevenard, “Coming Out” (S2J)


7. Love the Ones You’re With

“If you attend thoughtfully to what you already have, you need nothing more. It’s all here, inside and in the room – not on the screen – before us.”

-Claire Messud, “In Praise of Boredom” (Harpers)


8. High Hopes

“Since I gave up smoking marijuana, Alice in Wonderland and the Narnia books are the ones I go back to for that floating magic: talking lions and knitting sheep and mountains and iced sherbet and tiny cakes and mermaids. As a godless creature I’m kind of hoping that, when I die, I end up in one of those books.”

-Caitlin Moran, “Books of My Life” (Entertainment Weekly)


Image credit: Reading Rainbow/Kickstarter


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