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Language is political. That's why you and me, my Brother and Sister, that's why we supposed to choke our natural self into the weird, lying, barbarous, unreal, white speech and writing habits that the schools lay down like holy law. Because, in other words, the powerful don't play; they mean to keep that power, and those who are the powerless (you and me) better shape up --mimic/ape/suck --in the very image of the powerful, or the powerful will destroy you --you and our children.

Those are the same stars, and that is the same moon, that look down upon your brothers and sisters, and which they see as they look up to them, though they are ever so far away from us, and each other.
Only when the last tree has been cut down; Only when the last river has been poisoned; Only when the last fish has been caught; Only then will you find that money cannot be eaten.
A committee is a cul-de-sac down which ideas are lured and then quietly strangled.
I can sympathize with people's pains, but not with their pleasures. There is something curiously boring about somebody else's happiness.
Many people consider the things government does for them to be social progress, but they consider the things government does for others as socialism.
Excellence is to do a common thing in an uncommon way.
I will not permit any man to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him.
No man, who continues to add something to the material, intellectual and moral well-being of the place in which he lives, is left long without proper reward.
There are two ways of exerting one's strength; one is pushing down, the other is pulling up.
We're born alone, we live alone, we die alone. Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we're not alone.
Women who seek to be equal with men lack ambition.
All partisan movements add to the fullness of our understanding of society as a whole. They never detract; or, in any case, one must not allow them to do so. Experience adds to experience.
How simple a thing it seems to me that to know ourselves as we are, we must know our mothers names.
If we are to achieve a richer culture, rich in contrasting values, we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse human gift will find a fitting place.
No person is your friend who demands your silence, or denies your right to grow.
Expect nothing, live frugally on surprise.
The original crime of niggers and lesbians is that they prefer themselves.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
We don't see things as they are, we see things as we are.
I stopped loving my father a long time ago. What remained was the slavery to a pattern.
Somewhere in the bible it say Jesus hair was like lamb's wool, I say. Well, say Shug, if he came to any of these churches we talking bout he'd have to have it conked before anybody paid him any attention. The last thing niggers want to think about they God is that his hair kinky.
There is no blue without yellow and without orange.
My advice to people today is as follows: If you take the game of life seriously, if you take your nervous system seriously, if you take your sense organs seriously, if you take the energy process seriously, you must turn on, tune in, and drop out.
Facts don't cease to exist because they are ignored.
Experience teaches only the teachable.
The most valuable of all education is the ability to make yourself do the thing you have to do, when it has to be done, whether you like it or not.
Every man who knows how to read has it in his power to magnify himself, to multiply the ways in which he exists, to make his life full, significant and interesting.
Experience is not what happens to a man; it is what a man does with what happens to him.
Complete abstinence is easier than perfect moderation.
There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for ones own safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions. Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didnt, but if he was sane he had to fly them. If he flew them he was crazy and didnt have to; but if he didnt want to he was sane and had to. Yossarian was moved very deeply by the absolute simplicity of this clause of Catch-22 and let out a respectful whistle.
Anything that can be done chemically can be done by other means.
The face of evil is always the face of total need.
Junk is the ideal product... the ultimate merchandise. No sales talk necessary. The client will crawl through a sewer and beg to buy.
I do not love you

I do not love you as if you were salt-rose, or topaz,
or the arrow of carnations the fire shoots off.
I love you as certain dark things are to be loved,
in secret, between the shadow and the soul.

I love you as the plant that never blooms
but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers;
thanks to your love a certain solid fragrance,
risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body.

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where.
I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride;
so I love you because I know no other way

that this: where I does not exist, nor you,
so close that your hand on my chest is my hand,
so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.
Man, even man debased by the neocapitalism and pseudosocialism of our time, is a marvelous being because he sometimes speaks. Language is the mark, the sign, not of his fall but of his original innocence. Through the Word we may regain the lost kingdom and recover powers we possessed in the far-distant past.
My great hope is to laugh as much as I cry; to get my work done and try to love somebody and have the courage to accept the love in return.
I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life's a bitch. You've got to go out and kick ass.
It isn't enough for your heart to break because everybody's heart is broken now.
Reading makes immigrants of us all. It takes us away from home, but more important, it finds homes for us everywhere.
Nothing is illegal if one hundred businessmen decide to do it.
It almost seems that nobody can hate America as much as native Americans. America needs new immigrants to love and cherish it.
I wonder what language truck drivers are using, now that everyone is using theirs?
The eyes have one language everywhere.
Those who know nothing of foreign languages, knows nothing of their own.
One does not inhabit a country; one inhabits a language. That is our country, our fatherland --and no other.
To have another language is to possess a second soul.
The question that is so clearly in many potential parents minds: Why should we stunt our ambitions and impoverish our lives in order to be insulted and looked down upon in our old age?
It is the common error of builders and parents to follow some plan they think beautiful (and perhaps is so) without considering that nothing is beautiful that is misplaced.
Parents are sometimes a bit of a disappointment to their children. They don't fulfill the promise of their early years.
In order to influence a child, one must be careful not to be that child's parent or grandparent.
A boy becomes an adult three years before his parents think he does, and about two years after he thinks he does.
Having children makes one no more a parent than having a piano makes you a pianist.
Nothing has a stronger influence psychologically on their environment and especially on their children than the unlived life of the parent.
There is the fear, common to all English-only speakers, that the chief purpose of foreign languages is to make fun of us. Otherwise, you know, why not just come out and say it?
How many languages are there in the world? How about 5 billion! Each of us talks, listens, and thinks in his/her own special language that has been shaped by our culture, experiences, profession, personality, mores and attitudes. The chances of us meeting someone else who talks the exact same language is pretty remote.
As societies grow decadent, the language grows decadent, too. Words are used to disguise, not to illuminate, action: you liberate a city by destroying it. Words are to confuse, so that at election time people will solemnly vote against their own interests
There is nothing less to our credit than our neglect of the foreigner and his children, unless it be the arrogance most of us betray when we set out to Americanize him.
As a woman I have no country. As a woman my country is the whole world.
As the global expansion of Indian and Chinese restaurants suggests, xenophobia is directed against foreign people, not foreign cultural imports.
All of life is a foreign country.
Should a nation which attacks and occupies foreign territory in the face of United Nations disapproval be allowed to impose conditions on its own withdrawal?
Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.
The more I saw of foreign countries the more I loved my own.
Humor is the first gift to perish in a foreign language.
We don't just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary.
The English language is nobody's special property. It is the property of the imagination: it is the property of the language itself.
If we spoke a different language, we would perceive a somewhat different world.
The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one's own country as a foreign land.
Life is a foreign language: all men mispronounce it.
If you think dope is for kicks and for thrills, you're out of your mind. There are more kicks to be had in a good case of paralytic polio or by living in an iron lung. If you think you need stuff to play music or sing, you're crazy. It can fix you so you can't play nothing or sing nothing.
The basic thing nobody asks is why do people take drugs of any sort? Why do we have these accessories to normal living to live? I mean, is there something wrong with society that's making us so pressurized, that we cannot live without guarding ourselves against it?
The worst drugs are as bad as anybody's told you. It's just a dumb trip, which I can't condemn people if they get into it, because one gets into it for one's own personal, social, emotional reasons. It's something to be avoided if one can help it.
It is in the interests of our society to promote those things that take the edge off, keep us busy with our fixes, and keep us slightly numbed out and zombie like. In this way our modern consumer society itself functions as an addict.
It's an ordinary day for Brian. Like, he died every day, you know.
A drug is neither moral nor immoral -- it's a chemical compound. The compound itself is not a menace to society until a human being treats it as if consumption bestowed a temporary license to act like an asshole.
To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.
The only way around is through.
The journey is the reward.
Nobody saves America by sniffing cocaine, jiggling your knees blankly in the rain, when it snows in your nose you catch cold in your brain.

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