If the American Revolution had produced nothing but the Declaration of Independence, it would have been worth while. . . . The beauty and cogency of the preamble, reaching back to remotest antiquity and forward so an indefinite future, have lifted the hearts of millions of men and will continue to do. . . . These words are more revolutionary than anything written by Robespierre, Marx, or Lenin, more explosive than the atom, a continual challenge to ourselves as well as an inspiration to the oppressed of all the world.
Samuel Eliot Morison (1887 - 1976)
Source: The Oxford History of the American People, 1965, ch. 14
Self Esteem::"It is very easy in the world to live by the opinion of the world. It is very easy in solitude to be self-centered. But the finished man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude. I knew a man of simple habits and earnest character who never put out his hands nor opened his lips to court the public, and having survived several rotten reputations of younger men, honor came at last and sat down with him upon his private bench from which he had never stirred.
It is easy in the world to live after the world's opinions; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who, in the midst of the crowd, keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.
What I must do is all that concerns me, and not what people think. This rule, equally arduous in actual and in intellectual life, may serve for the whole distinction between greatness and meanness. It is harder, because you will always find those who think they know what is your duty better than you know it. It is easy in the world to live after the world's opinion; it is easy in solitude to look after your own; but the great man is he who, in the midst of the crowd, keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.
Maturity is not equated with independence though it includes a certain capacity for independence...The independence of the mature person is simply that he does not collapse when he has to stand alone. It is not an independence of needs for other persons with whom to have relationship: that would not be desired by the mature.