Archive for August, 2007

Wendell Phillips

Posted on August 25, 2007. Filed under: Public Speaking |

A mid Nineteenth Century, vastly respected and aristocratic civil rights crusader, Wendell Phillips had this to say on ‘ Public Speaking’ of that era.

“Hearing O’Connell, John Randolph (of Roanoke Va), who hated an Irishman nearly as much as he hated a Yankee, burst out, ‘This is the man! These are the lips, the most eloquent that speak English in my day’. I think he was right’.

“I remember the solemnity of Webster, the grace of Everett, the rhetoric of Choate. I know the eloquence that lay hid in the iron logic of Calhoun. I have melted beneath the magnetism of Sargeant S Prentiss of Mississippi who wielded a power few men ever had’.

“I have sat at the feet of the great speakers of the English tongue on either side of the Atlantic. I say that no one of them ever equaled and together they never surpassed  the power of the great Irish agitator, Daniel O’ Connell. Nature intended him for our Demosthenes. Never, since the great Greek, has she sent forth one so lavishly gifted for his work as tribune of the people”.

Himself an orator of no mean standing, Wendell Phillips addressed his audience with a beaming aspect which never dimmed. As he unfolded his argument, in the measured cadence of his voice there was no effected emotion, no declamation, no oratorical theatricals,  it was simply colloquy – a gentleman conversing.

Houston Peterson

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Personal Power – II

Posted on August 24, 2007. Filed under: Guide Posts, Personal Magnetism, Personalities |

Like most anything, there are three routes for developing personal power – Exercises, Habits and Regime, (the latter two really are variations of the same).


Pros and Cons. An exercise, once it is over, is laid aside.

A habit is grafted on the mind and soul of the individual.

Regime is a method of living (implies adoption of new habits). Thus it is the quickest way of generating and holding personal power. 

In fact personal power is a resultant energy that is generated by life itself. Its degree is directly dependent upon the intelligent direction the mind may give to the body and all its functions.

A far easier option is to follow a Regime of exact and careful conduct, which requires lesser thinking –J

Thus developing personal power requires precious little time. The change can commence forthwith – but first one has to know a little bit about it. Very little theory – just enough so that one realizes the need for doing this that and the other – and some resolve to sift the grain from the chaff in ones life.

 They say Knowledge is Power. And \never was this more true, than here and now.

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Posted on August 23, 2007. Filed under: The Good Book |

My Son, perform your tasks in meekness and glorify yourself with humility. 

The greater you are, the more must you humble yourself.    

The wisdom of a humble man will lift up his head and will seat him among the great.

The essentials of life are water and bread and clothing and a house to cover one’s nakedness. 


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The Bard’s Advice to the Young

Posted on August 22, 2007. Filed under: Quotes |

Give thy thoughts no tongue,
Nor any unproportioned thought his act.


Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice.
Take each man’s censure, but reserve thy judgment.

Be thou familiar, but by no means vulgar.


Those friends thou hast, and their adoption tried,
Grapple them to thy soul with hoops of steel;
But do not dull thy palm with entertainment
Of each new-hatch’d, unfledged comrade.

Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy,
But not express’d in fancy; rich, not gaudy,
For the apparel oft proclaims the man,

Neither a borrower nor a lender be;
For loan oft loses both itself and friend,
And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.

Beware of entrance to a quarrel, but being in,
Bear’t that the opposed may beware of thee.

This above all: to thine ownself be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.

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Caesar sees thru Cassius

Posted on August 18, 2007. Filed under: Quotes |

I do not know the man I should avoid
so soon as that spare Cassius.

He has a lean and hungry look.
He thinks too much. He reads much.

He is a great observer and he looks
quite through the deeds of men.


He loves no plays, he hears no music.
Seldom he smiles, and smiles in such a sort
as if he mock’d himself and scorn’d his spirit,
that could be moved to smile at any thing.

Such men as he are never at heart’s ease,
whil’st they behold a greater than themselves.
And therefore are they very dangerous.

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A Creed

Posted on August 16, 2007. Filed under: Quotes |

I asked GOD for Strength that I might Achieve. I was made Weak that I might learn Humbly to Obey.

I asked for Health that I might do Great Things. I was given Infirmity that I might do Better Things.

I asked for Riches that I might be Happy. I was given Poverty that I might be Wise.

I asked for Power that I might have the Praise of Men. I was given Weakness that I might feel the Need of God.

I asked for All Things that I might Enjoy Life. I was Given Life that I might Enjoy All Things. 

I got Nothing that I asked for – but Everything that I had Hoped For.

Almost despite myself, My Unspoken Prayers were Answered.


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David Niven – actor and writer …

Posted on August 15, 2007. Filed under: Books |

David Niven, the actor, is best remembered for his, ‘Around the World in Eighty Days’ and perhaps, ‘The Guns of Navarone’ which had the likes of Gregory Peck and Anthony Quinn.

However if you ever get to read either of the two books he has penned you will regard him as a better writer than actor. ‘The Moon is a Balloon’, is autobiographical.

In ‘Bring on the Empty Horses’ he talks of the old Hollywood and sketches the likes of Clark Gable, Humphrey Bogart, Erol Flynn and a host of others and his relations with all of them. Both are master pieces – if not classics.

Like the more renowned Briton, Winston Churchill, he was in the Army briefly – an episode which comes to mind is his Question to a General, at the end of a rather meandering lecture on matters military.

The General asks – “Are there are any questions?”

Niven writes, “Quite without my knowledge, my hand went up and I heard my voice ask, ‘Sir, could you please tell me the time?  – I have a train to catch?’

Of course he never caught the train! He was put under close arrest!!!  But after he and the officer guarding him began drinking they became friends and the officer allowed him to escape!

Off to Canada and Good Bye Army!!!

If you like elegant writing, good old honesty, classy humour (with oneself often being the butt), plenty of style laced with big time name dropping and a superabundance of sex, ‘The Moon is a Balloon’ is the book for you!!!

An example of his presence of mind and dry wit –

In 1974, while Niven was co-hosting the 46th Annual Oscars ceremony, a naked man appeared behind him, “streaking” across the stage.

Niven responded “Isn’t it fascinating to think that probably the only laugh that man will ever get in his life is by stripping off and showing his shortcomings?”

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You and Your Mind – Get a handle on it!

Posted on August 14, 2007. Filed under: Guide Posts, Personal Magnetism, Personalities |

Remember –
‘There is nothing so dreary as the empty mind’.
It can only be countered by having a goal – for the day, for the week, for the month, for the year and a life goal

You must never let the mind drift.
It drifts when it satisfies the desire for entertainment and for being pleased. 

Mental wandering destroys power and injures the brain.
When ever the mind drifts, ask, ‘What is the use of it?’

Let no time be wasted in idle talk, idle thinking and useless activities.

Thought is the mainspring of life and hence it has to be cultivated. It must be constant, deep and diverse.
Only by hard thinking does the mind grow.

A thinking mind is necessarily a powerful one.
An alert mind is Quick Acting. Remember Alexander of Macedon – whose genius, as per JFC Fuller, lay primarily in the rapidity of his decision making.

Develop the power of thought in the spare moments of the day.

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From the Thought of Meister Eckhart

Posted on August 13, 2007. Filed under: The Germans |

Meister Eckhart, philosopher and mystic, who was tried as a heretic. His “Defence” is famous for his reasoned arguments. Considered an emblem of the intellectual spirit of the Middle Ages

You may call God love, you may call God goodness. But the best name for God is Compassion.

If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.

A human being has so many skins inside, covering the depths of the heart. Why, thirty or forty skins or hides, as thick and hard as an ox’s or bear’s, cover the soul.

We know so many things, but we don’t know ourselves!. Go into your own ground and learn to know yourself there.

He who would be serene and pure, needs but one thing – detachment. The more you own the less you have.

Only the hand that erases, can write the true thing.


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Posted on August 9, 2007. Filed under: Movies |

‘Gone With The Wind’ and ‘GodFather’ usually jostle for the second spot, beneath ‘Citizen Kane’, in last Centuries List’s of Great Movies.

However Bogart’s and Bergman’s ‘Casablanca’ holds fast in the third spot.

Reading the script is next best to seeing the classic. So here we go …

A Happy Read!

By the way, this is what Ingrid Bergman, (1915-1982), had to say –

I made so many films which were more important, but the only one people ever want to talk about is that one with Bogart”.

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