Provoke like a mentor – Quotes collected via Goodreads.com


“Say ‘provoking’ again. Your mouth looks provocative when you do.”
— Becca Fitzpatrick (Hush, Hush (Hush, Hush, #1))
Mother Teresa
“These are the few ways we can practice humility:

To speak as little as possible of one’s self.

To mind one’s own business.

Not to want to manage other people’s affairs.

To avoid curiosity.

To accept contradictions and correction cheerfully.

To pass over the mistakes of others.

To accept insults and injuries.

To accept being slighted, forgotten and disliked.

To be kind and gentle even under provocation.

Never to stand on one’s dignity.

To choose always the hardest.”
— Mother Teresa (The Joy in Loving: A Guide to Daily Living)

Soren Kierkegaard
“The Bible is very easy to understand. But we Christians are a bunch of scheming swindlers. We pretend to be unable to understand it because we know very well that the minute we understand, we are obliged to act accordingly.”
— Søren Kierkegaard (Provocations: Spiritual Writings of Kierkegaard)
William S. Burroughs
“There is nothing more provocative than minding your own business.”
— William S. Burroughs (The Place of Dead Roads)
Soraya Chemaly
“Anger is an assertion of rights and worth. It is communication, equality, and knowledge. It is intimacy, acceptance, fearlessness, embodiment, revolt, and reconciliation. Anger is memory and rage. It is rational thought and irrational pain. Anger is freedom, independence, expansiveness, and entitlement. It is justice, passion, clarity, and motivation. Anger is instrumental, thoughtful, complicated, and resolved. In anger, whether you like it or not, there is truth.

Anger is the demand of accountability, It is evaluation, judgment, and refutation. It is reflective, visionary, and participatory. It’s a speech act, a social statement, an intention, and a purpose. It’s a risk and a threat. A confirmation and a wish. It is both powerlessness and power, palliative and a provocation. In anger, you will find both ferocity and comfort, vulnerability and hurt. Anger is the expression of hope.

How much anger is too much? Certainly not the anger that, for many of us, is a remembering of a self we learned to hide and quiet. It is willful and disobedient. It is survival, liberation, creativity, urgency, and vibrancy. It is a statement of need. An insistence of acknowledgment. Anger is a boundary. Anger is boundless. An opportunity for contemplation and self-awareness. It is commitment. Empathy. Self-love. Social responsibility. If it is poison, it is also the antidote. The anger we have as women is an act of radical imagination. Angry women burn brighter than the sun.

In the coming years, we will hear, again, that anger is a destructive force, to be controlled. Watch carefully, because not everyone is asked to do this in equal measure. Women, especially, will be told to set our anger aside in favor of a kinder, gentler approach to change. This is a false juxtaposition. Reenvisioned, anger can be the most feminine of virtues: compassionate, fierce, wise, and powerful. The women I admire most—those who have looked to themselves and the limitations and adversities that come with our bodies and the expectations that come with them—have all found ways to transform their anger into meaningful change. In them, anger has moved from debilitation to liberation.

Your anger is a gift you give to yourself and the world that is yours. In anger, I have lived more fully, freely, intensely, sensitively, and politically. If ever there was a time not to silence yourself, to channel your anger into healthy places and choices, this is it.”
— Soraya Chemaly (Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women’s Anger)

C.G. Jung
“Because we cannot discover God’s throne in the sky with a radiotelescope or establish (for certain) that a beloved father or mother is still about in a more or less corporeal form, people assume that such ideas are “not true.” I would rather say that they are not “true” enough, for these are conceptions of a kind that have accompanied human life from prehistoric times, and that still break through into consciousness at any provocation.

Modern man may assert that he can dispose with them, and he may bolster his opinion by insisting that there is no scientific evidence of their truth. Or he may even regret the loss of his convictions. But since we are dealing with invisible and unknowable things (for God is beyond human understanding, and there is no means of proving immortality), why should we bother about evidence? Even if we did not know by reason our need for salt in our food, we should nonetheless profit from its use. We might argue that the use of salt is a mere illusion of taste or a superstition; but it would still contribute to our well-being. Why, then, should we deprive ourselves of views that would prove helpful in crises and would give a meaning to our existence?

And how do we know that such ideas are not true? Many people would agree with me if I stated flatly that such ideas are probably illusions. What they fail to realize is that the denial is as impossible to “prove” as the assertion of religious belief. We are entirely free to choose which point of view we take; it will in any case be an arbitrary decision.

There is, however, a strong empirical reason why we should cultivate thoughts that can never be proved. It is that they are known to be useful. Man positively needs general ideas and convictions that will give a meaning to his life and enable him to find a place for himself in the universe. He can stand the most incredible hardships when he is convinced that they make sense; he is crushed when, on top of all his misfortunes, he has to admit that he is taking part in a “tale told by an idiot.”

It is the role of religious symbols to give a meaning to the life of man. The Pueblo Indians believe that they are the sons of Father Sun, and this belief endows their life with a perspective (and a goal) that goes far beyond their limited existence. It gives them ample space for the unfolding of personality and permits them a full life as complete persons. Their plight is infinitely more satisfactory than that of a man in our own civilization who knows that he is (and will remain) nothing more than an underdog with no inner meaning to his life.”
— C.G. Jung (Man and His Symbols)

Paul Harding
“But it’s a curse, a condemnation, like an act of provocation, to have been aroused from not being, to have been conjured up from a clot of dirt and hay and lit on fire and sent stumbling among the rocks and bones of this ruthless earth to weep and worry and wreak havoc and ponder little more than the impending return to oblivion, to invent hopes that are as elaborate as they are fraudulent and poorly constructed, and that burn off the moment they are dedicated, if not before, and are at best only true as we invent them for ourselves or tell them to others, around a fire, in a hovel, while we all freeze or starve or plot or contemplate treachery or betrayal or murder or despair of love, or make daughters and elaborately rejoice in them so that when they are cut down even more despair can be wrung from our hearts, which prove only to have been made for the purpose of being broken. And worse still, because broken hearts continue beating.”
— Paul Harding (Enon)
Nick Land
“Enigma, positive confusion (delirium), problematic, pain, whatever we want to call it; the torment of the philosophers in any case, is the stimulus to ecstatic creation, to an interminable “resolution” into the enhanced provocations of art. What the philosophers have never understood is this: it is the unintelligibility of the world alone that gives it worth. “Inertia needs unity (monism); plurality of interpretations a sign of strength. Not to desire to deprive the world of its disturbing and enigmatic character”. Not, then, to oppose pain to the absence of pain as metaphysical pessimism does, but, rather, to differentiate the ecstatic overcoming of pain from weariness and inertia, to exult in new and more terrible agonies, fears, burning perplexities as the resource of becoming, overcoming, triumph, the great libidinal oscillations that break up stabilized systems and intoxicate on intensity; that is Dionysian pessimism -“refusal to be deprived of the stimulus of the enigmatic”; “the effect of the work of art is to excite the state that creates art -intoxication”.”
— Nick Land (Fanged Noumena: Collected Writings, 1987-2007)
William Faulkner
“She turned now, facing him, as if she hand only been waiting until she became warm, the rich coat open upon the fragile glitter of her dress; there was a quality actually beautiful about her now-not of the face whose impeccable replica looks out from the covers of a thousand magazines each month, nor of the figure, the shape of deliberately epicene provocation into which the miles of celluloid film have constricted the female body of an entire race; but a quality completely female, in the old eternal fashion, primitive, assured and ruthless as she approched him … . “She said at once, now. So we can go. You see? Do you understand? We can leave now. Give her the money, let her have it all. We won’t care. …”
— William Faulkner (Collected Stories)
Nancy Jo Sales
“It’s people running around looking for anything to generate volume: Oh, teenage girls are taking their clothes off? And that’s getting a lot of hits? Then let’s turn a blind eye to the consequences. Oh, your daughter’s on Tinder? Well, she’s just meeting friends. It’s all about high-volume usage. I don’t think it’s necessarily a cynical, let’s destroy women thing – it’s how can I get my next quarter’s bonus?
And I think to the extent that the digital social media society normalizes impulses- think it, post it,” Roberts says, “we’ve also created a context for more and more provocative propositions, whatever they are: Look at my boobs. Do you want to hook up? It’s moved the bar for what’s normal and normalized extreme behavior; everything outrageous becomes normalized so rapidly. You realize how insane things are today when you think about the relative rate of change. When I was in high school, if I had gone around saying, Here’s a picture of me, like me, I would have gotten punched. If a girl went around passing out naked pictures of herself, people would have thought she needed therapy. Now that’s just Selfie Sunday.”

(— Paul Roberts quoted from the book)”
— Nancy Jo Sales (American Girls: Social Media and the Secret Lives of Teenagers)