Peoples Geography — Reclaiming space

Creating people's geographies

Into the looking glass

Two classic quotes — a reminder about the importance of following our own bliss (in the words of Joseph Campbell) and promoting an enabling authentic joy rather than a disabling despair, even in (especially in) dark political times.


The world is a looking glass, and gives back to every man the reflections of his own face. Frown at it, and it will in turn look sourly upon you; laugh at it and with it, and it is a jolly, kind companion; and so let all young persons take their choice
— William Makepeace Thackeray


An elder Cherokee Native American was teaching his grandchildren about life.

He said to them, “A fight is going on inside me…It is a terrible fight, and it is between two wolves.

One wolf represents fear, anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, pride and superiority.

The other wolf stands for joy, peace, love, hope, sharing, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, friendship, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith.

This same fight is going on inside of you and every other person too.”

They thought about it for a minute and then one child asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”

The old Cherokee simply replied…”The one I feed.”

And one more, a favourite of mine from John Milton’s Paradise Lost:

The mind is its own place, and in itself
Can make a Heav’n of Hell, a Hell of Heav’n

4 comments on “Into the looking glass

  1. JollyRoger
    11 April, 2007

    Milton, of course, was updated by one Ronald James Dio in 1978, who told us that the world is full of Kings and Queens, who blind your eyes and steal your dreams…. :)

  2. fencer
    11 April, 2007

    Hi Ann,

    As an admirer of your site, I’ve bestowed upon you the Thinking Blogger Award… Drop by my site to see what significance this may be. You can decide that for yourself, but it is a sincere appreciation!


  3. peoplesgeography
    11 April, 2007

    :lol: Thanks Jolly Roger, indeed.

  4. peoplesgeography
    11 April, 2007

    Thanks very much, Fencer, mighty kind of you. As a regular reader of your posts by way of WP’s Blog Surfer, I appreciate being nominated by such a thoughtful blogger as yourself. I have taken up the challenge to nominate five blogs.

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This entry was posted on 11 April, 2007 by in Books, Consciousness, Depth psychology, Poetry, Politics and Psychology, Poverty, Quotes.

Timely Reminders

"Those who crusade, not for God in themselves, but against the devil in others, never succeed in making the world better, but leave it either as it was, or sometimes perceptibly worse than what it was, before the crusade began. By thinking primarily of evil we tend, however excellent our intentions, to create occasions for evil to manifest itself."
-- Aldous Huxley

"The only war that matters is the war against the imagination. All others are subsumed by it."
-- Diane DiPrima, "Rant", from Pieces of a Song.

"It is difficult
to get the news from poems
yet men die miserably every day
for lack
of what is found there"
-- William Carlos Williams, "Asphodel, That Greeny Flower"