While visiting the U.S. in 1995, Pope John Paul II gave a moving homily to the crowds gathered at Camden Yards in Baltimore, Maryland. In it, he referenced Abraham Lincoln and his dedication to freedom and equality for all people. Having grown up in Poland during the rise of the Nazi party, Pope John Paul II shared an urgent passion for human rights. During the homily, the pope asserted that a true expression of freedom is not acting on selfish impulse, but committing our lives to serving the greater good and standing up for what is right.

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Einstein spoke frequently about imagination, which he believed was a crucial component of scientific progress. “Logic will get you from A to B,” he said. “Imagination will take you everywhere.” The famed physicist reminds us that it is imagination that gives wings to knowledge, by pointing the way to new possibilities.

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Live Well

“Wish not so much to live long as to live well.” – Benjamin Franklin

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“Love your enemies, for they tell you your faults.” – Benjamin Franklin

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In 218 BCE, during the Second Punic War, the great Carthaginian general Hannibal led his army from modern-day Spain all the way to Italy and toward Rome, in one of the most famous military achievements in history. As the troops neared the daunting peaks of the Alps, Hannibal’s generals warned him they would not be able to cross the mountain range with the horses and elephants they brought with them. Refusing to be deterred, Hannibal responded with the quote above: “Aut inveniam viam aut faciam.” He and his troops forged their own path across the mountains, and continued their march through Italy.

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With these simple words, author, activist, and spiritual leader Marianne Williamson exposes the very heart of empathy and compassion. It’s easy to let feelings of anger, blame, or judgment cause animosity with others. But if we take a moment to analyze the behavior of those around us, Williamson suggests, we’re likely to notice that they are either acting out of love or the deeply human fear of living without it.

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I wonder

For all the despair, the hope, the disappointment, the sheer joy of triumphant, the pain, the emotional loss, the unexpected and the incomprehensible shortness of life, for all of the mysteries of life that leaves humanity grasping for answers – my God what is the purpose of it all?

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Two Faced

Honestly, if I were two-faced, would I be showing you this one?Abraham Lincoln

This self-deprecating comment is perhaps the most famous Lincoln one-liner from the Douglas debates. Lincoln made the quip in response to Douglas’ accusation that he was two-faced.

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Lincoln Humor

“Shoot me, for if I am an uglier man than you I don’t want to live.” – Abraham Lincoln

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Stroke of luck

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