Desiderata ~ Stanza 1

by Max Ehrmann

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DeppInTheHeartOfTexas
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Desiderata ~ Stanza 1

Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Mon Mar 21, 2005 9:32 am

What say you?

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Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -
Wow! What a ride!

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Chocolat
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Unread postby Chocolat » Mon Mar 21, 2005 10:14 am

~ Be humble, alert, brave, take nothing for granted, respect all living things~

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~ MAGICK HAPPENS ~
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Unread postby deppraved » Mon Mar 21, 2005 10:56 am

This is something I am still needing to be reminded of daily. I am not particularly a people person or a blind optimist, yet I work with the public!
I like peacefulness. I can live and let live but clients seem to want to judge ME. I guess they feel entitled and that is my fault for letting them know too much.
As far as I can relate to this stanza, what it means to me is to model respectful behavior so as to receive the respect I desire. And an old adage, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all" has me being quiet a lot more often. People ask me what is wrong. LOL

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DeppInTheHeartOfTexas
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Mon Mar 21, 2005 11:20 am

To me it means that you should keep your cool, stay on purpose and know that every person is worthy of your attention because you will never stop learning and growing if you take the time to listen.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -

Wow! What a ride!

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Unread postby lumineuse » Mon Mar 21, 2005 11:31 am

I think it is also about staying centered in your life, and respectful of that center in others.
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Unread postby es » Mon Mar 21, 2005 11:32 am

its a good reminder concurning my kids,they have a tendancy to brabbel 30 sentences to say one line and i caught my self somethimes stop listening by sentence 4.
also the respect for all ,looks so simple but somethimes its so hard.
but its a good startingpoint,greets
es

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Unread postby Glendaleigh » Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:04 pm

I see be true to yourself and let the daily buzz go past. I also see consideration for others, as you'd like consideration for yourself.

Es related this stanza to her kiddlies, but I'm going to relate it to traffic. I guess I'd better let it go instead of yelling at rude drivers!

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Unread postby kristen » Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:14 pm

lumineuse wrote:I think it is also about staying centered in your life, and respectful of that center in others.


That's a great way of putting it, Lum. :cool:

This part is really peaceful to me. For me, it means to just be at peace with yourself and those around you, and to not let things get in the way that aren't necessary - don't worry about things that don't matter as much, but to be alert in your ways enough to respect others' opinions.

I think it also has to do with maintaining a balance, not being too boisterous with your opinions, yet not letting yourself be walked upon. It's about listening, co-existing, respect, peace. I love this poem!

BTW: what does the title mean/stand for/represent?

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Unread postby KYwoman » Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:21 pm

Everyone's interpretations of this are good....being centered, staying the course, respectful of others. So true.

I think the part about the silence strikes a chord with me. There is so much intrusive noise around. Being still and silent seems to have become lost and not valued. I love a quiet house or a peaceful walk in the park. A constant barage of stimulation dulls the senses and our own inner voice too.

It also goes on to say speak the truth... done so without beating people over the head with it! I watch these political talk shows with everyone screaming at each other and it tends to turn me off. Who's listening to anyone on these things?

And of course respect all kinds of people....for we all have value and purpose....that can be a tough one!

I have always wanted to ask Johnny why he looks to Saroyan and Desiderata (and other writings) as such strong personal beliefs and ways of life. I read these passages and find them beautiful prose and truism, to be sure. But he seems to make a point of taking it beyond that. I try to live my life in this way, sometimes more succesfully than others, but Johnny carries these passages around with him as constant reminders (at least the Saroyan one) and I wondered why he feels he needs to do that. Is it something that grounds him and gives him an anchor, or compass point/direction on how to live life, not having some of that as a youth? Maybe we'll discuss that at some other time.
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:38 pm

kristen wrote: BTW: what does the title mean/stand for/represent?


From allwords.com:

desideratum
noun

desiderata
1. formal
Something much wanted or required.
Thesaurus: want, aspiration, wish, aim, goal, objective, purpose, hope, desire, ideal, dream.
Etymology: 17c: from Latin desiderare, desideratum to long for.


KYwoman wrote: I have always wanted to ask Johnny why he looks to Saroyan and Desiderata (and other writings) as such strong personal beliefs and ways of life. I read these passages and find them beautiful prose and truism, to be sure. But he seems to make a point of taking it beyond that. I try to live my life in this way, sometimes more succesfully than others, but Johnny carries these passages around with him as constant reminders (at least the Saroyan one) and I wondered why he feels he needs to do that. Is it something that grounds him and gives him an anchor, or compass point/direction on how to live life, not having some of that as a youth? Maybe we'll discuss that at some other time


I would like to ask him that question too. It certainly never hurts to be reminded of these things. I would never presume to speak for him but I would imagine that leading the type of life he does with all the fame and craziness surrounding him, it's nice to be reminded of what's important.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -

Wow! What a ride!

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Unread postby luvdepp » Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:10 pm

KYwoman wrote:Everyone's interpretations of this are good....being centered, staying the course, respectful of others. So true.

I think the part about the silence strikes a chord with me. There is so much intrusive noise around. Being still and silent seems to have become lost and not valued. I love a quiet house or a peaceful walk in the park. A constant barage of stimulation dulls the senses and our own inner voice too.

The silence part is also what I gravitate to first and foremost. I think we need to be quiet and listen more. Everyone is in such a hurry to speak that I don't think we take the time to really listen. That's something that I've always gotten the impression that Johnny was good at, just being quiet and listening. I think that you show respect by really listening to what the other person is saying. :chill:
"So we shall let the reader answer this question for himself, who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived or he who has stayed securely on the shore and merely existed." ~HST~

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Unread postby Liz » Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:40 pm

First of all, I agree with everything you all have said.

There is a lot packed into this stanza, but I think the main message is PEACE. I think Ehrmann is referring to the peace within ourselves in the first line. In a busy, stressful world, the way to survive is to have peace within yourself. However, he goes on to expound on how to arrive at peace with others, which may require words that are tempered. He is indicating that we can speak our truth to others, but be careful of what comes out of our mouths. (I know there is a verse in the Bible in this regard, but don’t know it offhand) He is advocating respect by listening to all peoples….that maybe this is the way to peace.

I don't know about you, but I feel at peace when I read this stanza. :chill:
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The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.

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Unread postby Gypsylee » Mon Mar 21, 2005 5:23 pm

I decided to just jot down my thoughts as I read line by line:

Go calmly amid the noise and haste.

When everything seems to be rushing all around you......stand still and don't try to control.

"Peace in silence". You don't have to talk to fill quiet times. Just be still with someone or even yourself.

Get along but do not compromise.

"Speak the truth, quietly and clearly" Let your yes be yes and your no be no..... Don't yell to make your point. You don't have to defend or explain.

Have you ever had someone ask you how you are and when you go to tell them they look past you and start talking to someone else? The line in this stanza about listening to others applies here.

There are people out there I have felt I have no time for or interest in, but if you stop and think about them and really look at them.....try to imagine what their story is.....Everyones life is a story.


I have printed this poem and plan to keep it close to my heart. Thanks for this discussion Liz and DITHOT.
"In the time of your life, live....so that in that wondrous time you shall not add to the misery and sorrow of the world, but shall smile to the infinite delight and mystery of it." Saroyan

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Unread postby kristen » Mon Mar 21, 2005 6:36 pm

It is really a great poem. Thank you so much for posting it here, and introducing it to me, Liz and DITHOT. :lilyrose:

I agree with everything Liz just said -- PEACE was the main message for me. Just reading it makes you feel peaceful and content. Like a reminder, or something -- Everything's gonna be okay -- just as long as you stay true to yourself, it's possible, it's all there, just read that and be at peace, be calmed, and be centered and balanced. It's a great message. I love it :blush: .

I can't wait to read the other stanzas. It seems like we all generally agree with each other on it -- though it's very interesting to contemplate on the meanings and what each line evokes in each of us. Thanks again --K

PS -- thanks DITHOT, for the definition on the title...I've never even heard the word before...! :dunce: :blush:

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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Mon Mar 21, 2005 7:25 pm

gypsylee wrote: I have printed this poem and plan to keep it close to my heart. Thanks for this discussion Liz and DITHOT.


kristen wrote: It is really a great poem. Thank you so much for posting it here, and introducing it to me, Liz and DITHOT. :lilyrose:

PS -- thanks DITHOT, for the definition on the title...I've never even heard the word before...! :dunce: :blush:

You are most welcome. It is a good poem to read every once in a while to bring you back to a good place. :chill:

kristen, I didn't know what it meant either. Thanks for asking the question! :cool:
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -

Wow! What a ride!


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