I dedicate this post to all my dear friends who are teachers.
You have my full respect and admiration.
19 November 1957
Dear Monsieur Germain,
I let the commotion around me these days subside a bit before speaking to you from the bottom of my heart. I have just been given far too great an honor, one I neither sought nor solicited. But when I heard the news, my first thought, after my mother, was of you. Without you, without the affectionate hand you extended to the small poor child that I was, without your teaching and example, none of all this would have happened. I don’t make too much of this sort of honor. But at least it gives me the opportunity to tell you what you have been and still are for me, and to assure you that your efforts, your work, and the generous heart you put into it still live in one of your little schoolboys who, despite the years, has never stopped being your grateful pupil. I embrace you with all my heart.
Albert Camus (The First Man)
(Source, Brain Pickings. Thanks, Maria Popova)
For nine years now, the wonderful Maria Popova is sharing with us her Brain Pickings. I have received infiinite joy and wisdom from reading her pieces and sometimes digging further into the ‘wells’ she takes us to. Tis is truly life-changing for me. Thanks a lot, Maria.
Here are nine life-learnings that Maria is sharing with us after these years of intellectual and spiritual delight.
- Allow yourself the uncomfortable luxury of changing your mind.
- Do nothing for prestige or status or money or approval alone.
- Be generous.
- Build pockets of stillness into your life.
- When people tell you who they are, Maya Angelou famously advised, believe them. Just as importantly, however, when people try to tell you who you are, don’t believe them.
- Presence is far more intricate and rewarding an art than productivity.
- “Expect anything worthwhile to take a long time.”
- Seek out what magnifies your spirit.
- Don’t be afraid to be an idealist.
Read HERE what she means by these nine things. Enjoy!
Brain Pickings is an amazing web site created by Maria Popova. It deals merely with books. Good books.
One of her latest posts is about the effect on (good) books on the human soul. She mentions four of these:
- It saves you time
- It makes you nicer
- It’s a cure for loneliness
- It prepares you for failure.
And here is a conclusion:
Literature deserves its prestige for one reason above all others — because it’s a tool to help us live and die with a little bit more wisdom, goodness, and sanity.
You may agree more or less with the first three, but you may wonder what’s with the fourth one. If you do, you have to read the article. You can find it HERE. Enjoy!
This essay was published in originally published in the Evening Standard on January 12, 1946, and later included in the indispensable 1968 anthology George Orwell: As I Please, 1943-1945: The Collected Essays, Journalism & Letters, Vol 3.
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First of all, one should use Indian or Ceylonese tea. China tea has virtues which are not to be despised nowadays — it is economical, and one can drink it without milk — but there is not much stimulation in it. One does not feel wiser, braver or more optimistic after drinking it. Anyone who has used that comforting phrase ‘a nice cup of tea’ invariably means Indian tea.
Secondly, tea should be made in small quantities — that is, in a teapot. Tea out of an urn is always tasteless, while army tea, made in a cauldron, tastes of grease and whitewash. The teapot should be made of china or earthenware. Silver or Britannia ware teapots produce inferior tea and enamel pots are worse; though curiously enough a pewter teapot (a rarity nowadays) is not so bad.
Thirdly, the pot should be warmed beforehand. This is better done by placing it on the hob than by the usual method of swilling it out with hot water. Continue reading “George Orwell – Orwell’s 11 Golden Rules on How to Make A Percect Cup of Tea”