„The track, to me, was like an open book, in which I could read the meaning and purpose of life. I revered it like I would the sanctum sanctorum in a temple, where the deity resided and before whom I would humbly prostrate myself as a devotee. To keep myself steadfast to my goal, I renounced all pleasures and distractions, to keep myself fit and healthy, and dedicated my life to the ground where I could practice and run. Running had thus become my God, my religion and my beloved“

Stuff for legend: Athlete Milkha Singh's autobiography, 11 July 2013, 13 December 2013, Deccan herald http://www.deccanherald.com/content/344118/stuff-legend-athlete-milkha-singh039s.html,

Milkha Singh photo
Milkha Singh12
Indian track and field athlete 1935

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„I was gonna hide somewhere where nobody would find me and express myself entirely. I'm like a guerrilla warfare in my best books.“

—  Maurice Sendak American illustrator and writer of children's books 1928 - 2012

NOW interview (2004)
Contesto: I wasn't gonna paint. And I wasn't gonna do ostentatious drawings. I wasn't gonna have gallery pictures. I was gonna hide somewhere where nobody would find me and express myself entirely. I'm like a guerrilla warfare in my best books.

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„All I had was my head and my books, and I thought a lot. I learned, because there was no interruption. I had access to myself, to my thinking.“

—  Abraham Pais American Physicist 1918 - 2000

On life in hiding from Nazi authorities, p. 48
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Contesto: One of the things I learned, one of the strangest things, is how to think. There was nothing else to do. I couldn't see people, or go for a walk in the forest. All I had was my head and my books, and I thought a lot. I learned, because there was no interruption. I had access to myself, to my thinking. I wouldn't say that I particularly matured. The thinking was physics thinking. I was just short of twenty-two then.
I was in hiding for two years and two months, something like that. In all that time I went out very, very little, just once in a great while, after dark. Once I even took the train to Utrecht, forty miles from Amsterdam, with my yellow star, this star which I still have. Why did I go? I just wanted to visit some friends. I was a little bit crazy, a little bit insane.

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„Tis true, my form is something odd
but blaming me, is blaming God,
Could I create myself anew
I would not fail in pleasing you.“

—  Joseph Merrick English man with severe deformities 1862 - 1890

This is a rhyme used in Merrick's sideshow pamphlet, and which he is said to have often repeated, and used to sign his letters, followed by a quotation from "False Greatness" by Isaac Watts, first published in Horae Lyricae (1706) Bk. II:
If I could reach from pole to pole
or grasp the ocean with a span,
I would be measured by the soul
The mind's the standard of the Man.

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„I would like my life to be a statement of love and compassion--and where it isn't, that's where my work lies.“

—  Ram Dass American contemporary spiritual teacher and the author of the 1971 book Be Here Now 1931 - 2019

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„God spoke to me and God told me, "Keep your son,” And I did and he saved my life. My son saved my life. Had I not had my son, I would probably be dead right now.“

—  Stacey Dash American actress 1967

EXCLUSIVE: Stacey Dash Says Not Having an Abortion 'Saved' Her Life, Reveals She's Abstaining From Sex Before Marriage http://www.etonline.com/news/190126_stacey_dash_says_not_having_an_abortion_saved_my_life_exclusive/ (June 2, 2016)

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„Thus would I double my life's fading space;
For he that runs it well, runs twice his race.“

—  Abraham Cowley British writer 1618 - 1667

Discourse xi, Of Myself, stanza xi; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919). Compare: "For he lives twice who can at once employ / The present well, and ev'n the past enjoy", Alexander Pope, Imitation of Martial.

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„If I were to live my life over again, I would be an American. I would steep myself in America, I would know no other land.“

—  Henry James American novelist, short story author, and literary critic 1843 - 1916

Said to Hamlin Garland in 1906 and quoted by Garland in Roadside Meetings (1930; reprinted by Kessinger Publishing, 2005, ISBN 1-417-90788-6, ch. XXXVI: Henry James at Rye (p. 461).

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„If my life is going to mean anything, I have to live it myself.“

—  Rick Riordan, libro Percy Jackson e gli dei dell'Olimpo: Il ladro di fulmini

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„If I knew that I could die, I would live. My life, my death, my choice.“

—  Terry Pratchett English author 1948 - 2015

Final lines of his Richard Dimbleby lecture Shaking Hands With Death on euthanasia and assisted suicide, quoted in "Terry Pratchett: my case for a euthanasia tribunal" in The Guardian (2 February 2010) http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2010/feb/02/terry-pratchett-assisted-suicide-tribunal
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Contesto: I dare say that quite a few people have contemplated death for reasons that much later seemed to them to be quite minor. If we are to live in a world where a socially acceptable "early death" can be allowed, it must be allowed as a result of careful consideration.
Let us consider me as a test case. As I have said, I would like to die peacefully with Thomas Tallis on my iPod before the disease takes me over and I hope that will not be for quite some time to come, because if I knew that I could die at any time I wanted, then suddenly every day would be as precious as a million pounds. If I knew that I could die, I would live. My life, my death, my choice.

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„But in writing this book I found myself sadly hampered by the impossibility of drawing such diagrams as were necessary for my purpose… my life was under a cloud. All pleasures palled upon me; all sights tantalized and tempted me to outspoken treason, because I could not but compare what I saw in Two Dimensions with what it really was if seen in Three, and could hardly refrain from making my comparisons aloud.“

—  Edwin Abbott Abbott, libro Flatlandia

Origine: Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions (1884), PART II: OTHER WORLDS, Chapter 22. How I Then Tried to Diffuse the Theory of Three Dimensions by Other Means, and of the Result
Contesto: I devoted several months in privacy to the composition of a treatise on the mysteries of Three Dimensions. Only, with the view of evading the Law, if possible, I spoke not of a physical Dimension, but of a Thoughtland whence, in theory, a Figure could look down upon Flatland and see simultaneously the insides of all things, and where it was possible that there might be supposed to exist a Figure environed, as it were, with six Squares, and containing eight terminal Points. But in writing this book I found myself sadly hampered by the impossibility of drawing such diagrams as were necessary for my purpose... my life was under a cloud. All pleasures palled upon me; all sights tantalized and tempted me to outspoken treason, because I could not but compare what I saw in Two Dimensions with what it really was if seen in Three, and could hardly refrain from making my comparisons aloud.' I neglected my clients and my own business to give myself to the contemplation of the mysteries which I had once beheld, yet which I could impart to no one, and found daily more difficult to reproduce even before my own mental vision.

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„i wondered if i would spend the rest of my life inventing complicated ways to depress myself..“

—  Miranda July American performance artist, musician and writer 1974

Origine: No One Belongs Here More Than You

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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