Quote of the Week #70

Can you think of a book that influenced your life or that changed you? What was it about this book that made a difference? How long ago did you read it?

Recently some friends from New Orleans visited and like I did when my nieces and nephews were here the week before, I brought to the table a box of questions to read during dinner. The question topics varied greatly, from simple to profound. We passed the box around, letting each person choose one from the box and then reading the question aloud.  Then each person shared his/her answer.

The question above is one of the questions that came up. Despite loving books and loving to read I could not come up with an answer. Can you?

My friend Juan named The Little Prince–a book I read long ago when I was in college. At the time I loved it so much I went out to the bookstore and bought a copy, which I was quick to retrieve after everyone had answered, paging through the book and trying to remember why it affected me enough to want to own it.

Have you read this book? Though written as a children’s book, I think many adults would agree when I say it is more enjoyed by grownups. Certainly the book has a lot of hidden lessons and themes that a child cannot understand.

One theme I remembered as I paged through the book was not judging something simply by how it looks.  That to truly know something, and especially, someone, one has to look beneath the surface rather than just notice the obvious outward traits. The fox in the story calls this “taming” and by it he means creating ties with other individuals–allowing ourselves to be vulnerable as we get to know others and learn to trust and give openly.

And so, this week’s quote, from the author of The Little Prince: Antoine de Saint-Exupery:

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“Here is my secret: It is very simple; It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

What do you think of this? Did you read this book? What was your favorite theme from the story?

If you have never read this book, I highly suggest it! You might need to read it a few times to really grasp all of the hidden lessons.

Here are some other posts about this subject: why I try not to say“Hi, how are you?” some thoughts on having an “AHA moment” with a stranger, on the opinions of others, on the consequences of not knowing another, and lastly, on the value of old friends.

Happy day! And happy reading.

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This entry was posted in For My Soul, Quote of the Week, Wisdom for your Wednesday and tagged , , , , , .

11 Comments

  1. Jock Aplin July 11, 2016 at 1:19 pm #

    The book that always comes to mind is Parting the Waters, by Taylor Branch. I read it decades ago, but still remember the power of it. A vivid description of the
    King years and the desegregation struggles.
    I was a kid in Tennessee, largely oblivious to what was going on not that far away.

    • Sharon Mammoser July 11, 2016 at 5:22 pm #

      Jock, thanks for taking the time to comment! I am not familiar with the book you named but will surely put it on my list of books to read. I always enjoy reading book that others have recommended.

      • Flo July 12, 2016 at 7:19 am #

        I guess one of the many books I’ve read that had a profound influence on me was “The Power of Positive Thinking”. This has led me to look at the bright side when things were not going so well for me, especially as a single parent of 3 lovable daughters. If I didn’t enjoy and relish each moment I spend enjoying the fantastic benefits of nature I probably wouldn’t have this optimistic feeling either. “I count only the hours that are bright” was next to my yearbook photo and at the time, I didn’t even know I was discounting the hours that weren’t bright. As a senior-aged woman, I know there’s bright and not bright but it’s all part of my acceptance of life. Each day still is a blessing and no one is going to tell me any differently. Love you Sharon for your outlook and extensive appreciation of all the natural beauty that surrounds us and your sharing it with us..

        • Sharon Mammoser July 12, 2016 at 9:59 am #

          Thank you, Flo, for your thoughts and kind words! I will check out the book you mentioned. Your daughters are lucky to have you!

  2. Carol Beth Icard July 11, 2016 at 8:41 pm #

    I am a big fan of The Little Prince, and as a member of a worldwide community called Postcrossing.com (snail mail postcards sent to random users all over the world) it is amazing to see how many other postcrossers mention The Little Prince on their profile. It is universally understood with great wisdom.

    Another book I have read that affected me deeply is The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff.

    • Sharon Mammoser July 12, 2016 at 10:02 am #

      Carol, I would love to hear more about that group– sounds interesting and fun. I will look into it. Also will check out the book you mentioned. Thanks for writing!

  3. Hon July 12, 2016 at 11:24 am #

    I Wish that I could say a single time made a difference.Perhaps King Arthur or Lord of the Rings. Hard quests and difficulties overcome. Of course my texts in Pediatrics and Emergency Medicine were my Bibles

  4. colleen July 13, 2016 at 9:12 am #

    Have not read “the Little Prince” but just noticed the second time this week the mention of this book. I pay attention to these kind of signs and I’ll take myself to the library pronto. Thanks Sharon

    • Sharon Mammoser July 18, 2016 at 2:21 pm #

      Colleen, thanks for writing! And let me know what you think of the book.

  5. Lisa M July 15, 2016 at 7:02 pm #

    Hi Sharon, I remember discussing with you the book Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver. I have read everything by her and that is still my favorite! I love her writing, I loved her characters, and I enjoyed the way she wove everything together. And she ended with such a feeling of hope for the American chestnut tree- that detail made me happy since I would love to see a full grown majestic chestnut! Thanks for this post, Sharon! It’s thought provoking as so many of your posts are! 🙂

    • Sharon Mammoser July 18, 2016 at 2:18 pm #

      Hey Lisa, Thanks for writing! (and for reading) I had forgotten all about Prodigal Summer! Thanks for the reminder. It was a fabulous book. Maybe it’s time for me to re-read it.

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