I place economy among the first and important virtues, and public debt as the greatest of dangers. To preserve our independence, we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our choice between economy and liberty, or profusion and servitude. If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of caring for them, they will be happy.
Every kind of work can be a pleasure. Even simple household tasks can be an opportunity to exercise and expand our caring, our effectiveness, our responsiveness. As we respond with caring and vision to all work, we develop our capacity to respond fully to all of life. Every action generates positive energy which can be shared with others. These qualities of caring and responsiveness are the greatest gift we can offer.
Engrossed late and soon in professional cares, getting and spending, you may may so lay waste your powers that you may find, too late, with hearts given away, that t here is no place in your habit-stricken souls for those gentler influences which make your life worth living.
If I Really Cared . . . • Who you are would be more important to me than who I am. • Where you hurt would be more important than that I'm well. • What you feel would be more important than what I know. • I'd look you in the eyes when you talk to me; • I'd think about what you're saying rather than what I'm going to say next- • I'd hear your feelings as well as your words. • I'd listen without defending. • I'd hear without deciding whether you are right or wrong. • I'd ask you why and how, not just when and where. • I'd laugh with you but not at you. • I'd talk with you and not to you, and I'd know when it's time to do neither. • I wouldn't climb over your walls. • I'd wait until you let me in the gate. • I wouldn't unlock your secrets; • The performances would end. If I really cared about you, • I'd be myself with you • And give you the right to be the same.