Life & Living

"While sticks and stones break bones, words can never hurt? Manifestly untrue. Politics everywhere are holistic, interconnected, and the rhetoric of right or left can produce toxic atmospheres in which lunacy thrives."


"I truly believed that to be culinarily literate was of central importance to personal independence and happiness."


"You've never lived till you've almost died. For those who fight for it life has a flavour the protected will never know. "


"I went out to the world, to see if I could not learn what life had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived."


"If you count your blessings not your troubles your life is more beautiful."


"Hope is like a magic wand that whisks away your troubles and fulfills all your dreams and courage is like a golden key that opens a special door and gives you a brand new life."


"Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending."


"All the peace, wisdom and joy in the Universe are already within us, we just have to open our eyes and realise what is already here and who we really are."


"Sometimes our path in life is unpredictable and challenging, if we don't travel this path we would not discover our true self."


"Happiness is a grateful spirit, an optimistic attitude, and a heart full of love."


"The more difficulties a person encounters the more significant and the higher in inspiration their life will be."


"Life was certainly a queer business - so brief, yet such a lot of it; so substantial, yet in a few years, which behaved like minutes, all scattered and anyhow."


"If we can only live once, let it be a daring adventure."


"Never forget family or, doing things just for your heart. "


"To share the table with people you love is all about giving and receiving; it's a total two-way street. It can do far more than make your palate come alive - it makes you feel connected, to the people around the table and also to the land. And people love being fed!"


"Life is full of lessons, and the key is to use them as building blocks. That is a definition - my definition - of experience. And, like time, you cannot buy it. You just have to use it, to serve your apprenticeship. "

JOHN, BERTRAND - Born to Win, Patrick Robinson

"As we weep for what we have lost, and as we grieve for family and friends and we confront the challenge that is before us, I want us to remember who we are. We are Queenslanders. We're the people that they breed tough, north of the border. We're the ones that they knock down, and we get up again. "


"We all need to be very patient, which is part of getting people back on their feet, but I do understand. Inevitably, we will see a lot of pain and grief. "


"When considering the stature of an athlete or for that matter any person, I set great store in certain qualities which I believe to be essential in addition to skill. They are that the person conducts his or her life with dignity, with integrity, courage, and perhaps most of all, with modesty. These virtues are totally compatible with pride, ambition, and competitiveness. "


"Racists are able 'utterly to disregard' the sufferings of their victims. If they are to see the evil they do, they must first find it intelligible that their victims had inner lives of the kind which enable the wrongs they suffer to go deep. "


"Be open to them (the opportunities). Grasp them in your hands. Ask yourself, 'If not, why not?' Be bold, be bold, be bold."

QUENTIN, BRYCE - speech to the University of Melbourne class of 2013

"The image of the bronzed Aussie may be a myth. But there is nothing fictitious about the importance of sport as a way of life in Australia: it promotes health as well as competitive spirit. We may stop just short of obsessed, but sport is as available to Australians - and as necessary - as meat pies, kangaroos and Holden cars. "

THE, BULLETIN - 24-Oct-89

"To recognize the equal humanity of every broken spirit of the stolen generations; to see your own child in the face of every child fretting and grieving in a detention centre, would be a terrible burden. This blindness protects the privileged."


"Your life right now is a reflection of your past thoughts. That includes all the great things, and all the things you consider not so great. Since you attract to you what you think about most, it is easy to see what your dominant thoughts have been on every subject of your life, because that is what you have experienced."


"People who have drawn wealth into their lives used The Secret, whether consciously or unconsciously. They think thoughts of abundance and wealth, and they do not allow any contradictory thoughts to take root in their minds."


"A lot of people felt betrayed by nature but personally I don't think we were betrayed because we knew that could happen - we knew it in our heads, but never in our hearts expected it to. We very much believe that the bush was here first and if we come in and impose on it then we can expect to be impacted when nature takes the upper hand. We are getting so far away from an appreciation of the role of nature in our lives it worries me..."

JANE, CALDER - of the Victorian bushfires

"Life is a challenge, and many people who have accomplished great things in their lives have done so not in spite of serious setbacks, but because of them. "


"Grief is like a fingerprint, it's unique to everyone, and so is the way you process it. "


"For better or worse, sport has become central to Australian life and the business of being Australian. Sporting culture is accessible and provides continuing satisfaction for many Australians. It is immensely popular and also addresses some of the central issues of Australian life. "

RICHARD, CASHMAN - Paradise of Sport: the rise of organised sport in Australia

"I always get upset when I do this because it means someone has to die so that someone else can live... "


"Anyone to succeed in the colonies must take with him a quantity of self-reliance, energy and perseverance; this is the best capital a man can have."


"When I was a little girl my aunt wrote these lines in my autograph book:
So many gods, so many creeds
So many paths that wind and wind
And yet the art of being kind
Is all the sad world needs.

When I grew up I came to understand that basic truth - and I learned that more often than not the gift of kindness comes back to the giver."


"'Paying it forward'. In many ways that is a succinct expression of the major obligation of our existence. Doing things now for the protection and upliftment of relatively helpless future generations, which either don't exist yet or are presently too young to take action themselves. Australians don't have this obligation uniquely - every society on earth shares it equally. But in this country we have opportunities not widely available. We not only have an abundance of brilliant people with great energy and inventiveness, we are comparatively rich and thus can do what others might only dream of."

GENERAL SIR PETER, COSGROVE - A Very Australian Conversation, Boyer Lectures 2009

"It is crucial to understand the value of opportunities: when a door shuts this is almost certainly followed by another door opening."


"Integrity is the trait valued highest in today's world... Integrity calls for consistent values that underpin all of our lives and allows our true self to be expressed. A life well lived requires such an integrity, if we are to leave behind a legacy from our time on this earth. "


"Never give up and never lose sight of your goals."


"True success is not about winning every post. It's actually the wisdom of discovering that there are many different paths to your goals and reaching your potential."


"It is better just to get on with the business of living and minding your own business and maybe, if God likes the way you do things, he may just let you flower for a day or a night. But don't go pestering and begging and telling him all your stupid little sins, that way you will spoil his day."

BRYCE, COURTENAY - The Power of One

"The power of one is above all things the power to believe in yourself, ofen well beyond any latent ability you may have previously demonstrated. The mind is the athlete, the body is simply the means it uses to run faster or longer, jump higher, shoot straighter, kick better, swim harder, hit further, or box better."

BRYCE, COURTENAY - The Power of One

"Sometimes the slightest things change the directions of our lives, the merest breath of a circumstance, a random moment that connects like a meteorite striking the earth. Lives have swiveled and changed direction on the strength of a chance remark."

BRYCE, COURTENAY - The Power of One

"But I was still alive, and in my book, where there's life, there's hope."

BRYCE, COURTENAY - The Power of One

"It's nothing to be ashamed of. There comes a time in everything when you don't know something."

BRYCE, COURTENAY - The Power of One

"Always in life an idea starts small, it is only a sapling idea, but the vines will come and they will try to choke your idea so it cannot grow and it will die and you will never know you had a big idea, an idea so big it could have grown thirty meters through the dark canopy of leaves and touched the face of the sky.' He looked at me and continued. 'The vines are people who are afraid of originality, of new thinking. Most people you encounter will be vines; when you are a young plant they are very dangerous.' His piercing blue eyes looked into mine.' Always listen to yourself, Peekay. It is better to be wrong than simply to follow convention. If you are wrong, no matter, you have learned something and you grow stronger. If you are right, you have taken another step toward a fulfilling life."

BRYCE, COURTENAY - The Power of One

"First with the head, then with the heart."

BRYCE, COURTENAY - The Power of One

"How do you survive the reality of it?(losing three babies) You rest, you grieve, you reach out, you trust, you remember, you hope and you accept. You gravitate to kindness, to help and you relinquish control over things you cannot govern. You assume life is not our there to get you - it's there to teach you and to introduce you to yourself. You love because it's sweeter than bitterness. And you realise that people are incredible, resilient, willing and capable, and that you are one of them."

MARY, COUSTAS - All I Know: A Memoir of Love, Loss and Life

"Men have influenced my activism and feminism both positively and negatively. As most gender differences are social, not genetic, we still need to change what we do and what we expect of each other... The potential exists for societies where men and women do not have to conform to unwanted stereotypes."


"When times get really tough you just keep putting one foot in front of the other. That very next step might lead into change."


"It is a good life, if you're doing what you like doing. "


"There are few lonelier sounds than the echoes of an empty house previously filled with the voice of a child, but it's one fathers confront in the vase majority of separations and divorces."


"Travel bequeaths many unexpected gifts, but the knowledge we don't live in fear in this country is something we take for granted."


"In the long term, it will be the human race that must take responsibility for the development of sustainable life-styles and economies that are not insistent on continuing growth and a throw away society."


"Life isn't about finding yourself - it's about creating yourself! "


"The opportunity of a lifetime must be grasped within the lifetime of that opportunity. "

CATHERINE, DE VRYE - Hot Lemon & Honey

"If you find a path with no obstacles, it likely leads nowhere. "


"Why am I the happiest refugee? Look, I'm a kid with a family with not really very much can arrive here with nothing and um, have everything really, that you need to have a happy life. "

ANH, DO - The Happiest Refugee

"Singing from the soul heals your hurt and loneliness."


"Life is no brief candle but a splendid torch made to burn ever more brightly. "


"You can lay down and die, or you can get up and fight, but that's it - there's no turning back."


"I know what obstacles they (rural women) have to overcome to achieve their goals, such as the tyranny of distance, isolation and lack of services - government agencies, closure of financial institutions, limited educational opportunities, and the need to live away from home for medical treatment, often without any family members to support them. Many of our rural women are achieving great things but to them it is in the ordinariness of their day-to-day living. They do not see the obstacles; they see only the challenges and solutions."


"He taught me the power of encouragement. He taught me the reward of having a go, where there seems to be no way up but if you persevere, if you don't ever give up, then you can achieve things which others think are impossible. "

ANDREW, FORREST - of Scotty Black, aboriginal stockman and mentor

"We only have two things that we share in this life; we are born and we die. And what we do in between those times, we've got to be happy. I don't let the outside world deter me. "


"I don't linger on the fact that Dawn Fraser was a great swimmer 40 years ago. That was in the past. I did break 41 world records, but I don't live on that today. "


"What to do when someone we know is battling a serious illness? "Nothing" is the answer most of us settle on. As a society, we're lousy at bereavement and worse with sickness."


"We love, but they 'love'; we grieve, but they 'grieve'; and of course we may be dispossessed, but they are 'dispossessed'. "

RAI, GAITA - on the Mabo case

"Among my generation people have more idea about each other's taste in food than they do about each other's spiritual lives."


"The mind exists in close relationship to our body, but it is not our body, not even just the brain. The mind functions in relationship to all around us. It is affected by the environment we are in, the animals and the people we interact with. The mind regulates all our vital functions. It collects, stores, retrieves and uses information. It controls the energy that flows through us: physical, emotional, mental and spiritual."

IAN, GAWLER - The Mind That Changes Everything

"Mum always taught us that compassion and kindness were the most important things in life, that it was better to be kind than right. "


"Try harder every day to be better than the day before. "


"Life's too short to sit around and wait."


"All you see is me
And all I truly believe
That I was born to try"

DELTA, GOODREM - Born to Try

"We pass through this world but once. Few tragedies can be more extensive than the stunting of a life, few injustices deeper than the denial of an opportunity to strive or even to hope, by a limit imposed from without, but falsely identified as lying within."


"Nervous breakdowns? I have them all the time. They are the rich compost of self-discovery, breeding insight and the brightest jewel of man's mental labours - compassion. "


"I am quite reactionary about Aussies travelling. Why, we've only been here a hundred years. What can be added by going before we are here? - that is not right but for we are here, but only just here. If we don't hold what we have we may never find it again, so delicate a thing it is, yet it gives the appearance of being overpowerful on close examination... I don't think a change of location can answer our questions."

JOY, HESTER - Joy Hester: Art and Life, Janice Burke

"Somehow, one never really runs away, or I never have, and I find that the faster I go the more catches up with me... all the while time stands, to me, still - straight up and down like a great white sheet."

JOY, HESTER - Joy Hester: Art and Life, Janice Burke

"I was living in Echuca at the time. He sniffed me out. A well-appointed little bungalow in the kerosene-tub style. River frontage. Two acres of fine soil. Tomatoes. Broccoli. The odd chook... Rhode Island Reds. Yabbies. Manure. An invalid pension. What more could a man want?"

JACK, HIBBERD - Monk: A Stretch of the Imagination

"Every eye is an eye. When you are doing the surgery there, that is just as important as if you were doing eye surgery on The Prime Minister or King. "


"I believe that the basic attribute of mankind is to look after each other. "


"Communication and relationships is everything and the breakdown of that is what has led to a lot of tragic things in our current society - homelessness and marriage breakdown, even early school dropouts, substance abuse. Things come about because there is no communication; and people don't feel heard, they don't feel understood. If you understand why somebody is behaving the way they do, you're more likely to be sympathetic. And that understanding really only comes from talking and perhaps even, more importantly, listening."


"Everyone has pain, everyone feels loneliness, everyone has challenges and hard times. Everyone feels some fear, some wondering about what it's all about, some joy in life. It's very lovely to hear what we have in common, and to recognise and celebrate the differences as well. "


"Living life to the full, with meaning and spirit, in not an unattainable goal for the few. It's open to everyone. There is a naturalness about it, which, once caught, becomes a sort of second nature. It grows out of paying serious attention to the discovery of who you are and what your purpose is. It is not a withdrawal from the world but a commitment to waking up to the possibilities of life, to engaging courageously with life, taking in its rich experiences so they become part of you; to giving all that you uniquely have to give? Living life to the full requires you to laugh and enjoy, to be grateful for the astonishing gift of your life, to identify and take care of your spiritual sources of nourishment, and find a community of faith in life that will challenge you and keep you in good company. "

CAROLINE, JONES - An Authentic Life

"I'm not sure what the future holds but I do know that I'm going to be positive and not wake up feeling desperate. As my dad said, "Nic, it is what it is, it's not what it should have been, not what it could have been, it is what it is". "


"I have always thought that the essential foundation of fundamental human rights is love. Love for one another. Empathy for fellow human beings."

MICHAEL, KIRBY - But The Greatest of These is Love Graduation Speech, Griffith University December 2008

"Not only does art imitate life but life imitates art. Perhaps we not only learn about life from stories, perhaps we make our lives through the stories we tell ourselves about the things that happen to us."

RAMONA, KOVAL - By the Book

"Always eat when you are hungry,always drink when you are dry, always sleep when you are sleepy, don't stop breathing or you"ll DIE."

DEXTER, KRUGER - at 109 and 19 days

"Choice is a luxury but I imagine it's difficult for young people today, particularly when careers are changing so much. When I was growing up, it had nothing to do with what you would like to be. It was, 'Where can you get a job?' If you had limited choice, you just live with it."


"Oh, my ways are strange ways and new ways and old ways, And deep ways and steep ways and high ways and low, I'm at home and at ease on a track that I know not, And restless and lost on a road that I know. "


"This life is actually very exhausting. It doesn't give humans much time to contemplate anything. We are not resting ourselves and there is the feeling we have got to keep working and pushing really hard. So I draw the person running and running and running-for no apparent reason. And suddenly I find that I have touched on something that is perhaps universal."


"I believe every single one of us has a choice in life and that we can all choose to live out whatever our exceptional minds dream up."

KARNI, LIDDELL - Women's Words, Karen Phillips

"Choices in life are not and should not be determined by our life circumstances."

KARNI, LIDDELL - Women's Words, Karen Phillips

"Sex is not only the basis of life, it is the reason for life."


"Life is mostly froth and bubble,
Two things stand like stone,
KINDNESS in another's trouble,
COURAGE in your own."

ADAM, LINDSAY GORDON - Ye Wearie Wayfarer

"Being constrained, not able to share what you are thinking and feeling, especially with those you love deeply, is cruel, almost as cruel as cancer itself."

CHRISTINE, LISTER - The Hidden Journey

"Cancer touches the lives of countless numbers of people, sufferers and those who suffer because they are forced to bear witness to the suffering cancer causes. No one emerges unscathed."

CHRISTINE, LISTER - The Hidden Journey

"It's another beautiful spring day in Paradise. Birds are twittering. Soft pink streaks across the sky warming me, warming the day, and making me feel heartened. I love the sunlight. How could I live without the sun? It makes me feel warm inside and out."

CHRISTINE, LISTER - The Hidden Journey

"Cancer is a cruel disease. Almost as cruel is the conventional wisdom and etiquette that dictates how cancer victims and those closest to them are expected to behave in the face of its onslaught. It is embedded into our psyche that strength, stoicism or spirituality are the faces we show against this evil. "

CHRISTINE, LISTER - The Hidden Journey

"When cancer strikes it changes your life, but it doesn't change who you are. Your essence remains. The paradox is that although you are the same person you are indelibly and irrevocably changed."

CHRISTINE, LISTER - The Hidden Journey

"Life, like sunrise, can often delight and surprise. "


"Cancer is confronting. It strikes at the heart and mind as much as the body. Life approximates a seesaw swinging wildly from one dichotomy to the other and back again. The natural rhythm and equilibrium of living is shattered. So too is your sense of personal safety and control over your life."

CHRISTINE, LISTER - The Hidden Journey

"Society lauds those who are courageous and brave in their battles with cancer, labelling them heroes. Falling prey to the fear and strong emotions cancer invokes is seen as giving in. Controlling your emotions is equated to controlling the ravages of the disease. Any overt signs or intimations of weakness are generally frowned upon."

CHRISTINE, LISTER - The Hidden Journey

"In the hard journey back to life and health, it sure helps to know that there are people in the world who will love and encourage and help."


"New life (you might say 'grace') is always coming at us but the trick about embracing new life is letting go."


"Mature relationships are those that know intimacy will be won and lost and won again. The impulse to maintain intimacy without end, the impulse to live on an emotional high without end, is the impulse of an addict."


"The innate impulse to defend one's self against people's expectation and potential wrongdoing is so strong it's possible to spend most of our lifetime defending, rather than living."


"There are none so blind as those who know how they feel about things. I wouldn't mind but such people are usually evangelical too, they're miserable about someone or something and they want to share it. Here's my tip for the day - before you unload on anyone today, stop for just long enough to ask yourself what you see. Are you seeing a person or a problem?"


"The blind spot of this generation is that it thinks that authentic expression of feeling somehow gives legitimacy to hurtful acts."


"Life is bigger and better than we can imagine and, in order to enter into the beauty of life, we often have to be dragged through the death of our illusions and the collapse of our smaller hopes. This brings liberation."


"Real life breathes just like we do, in and then out. It moves and changes just like the seasons. It's dynamic never static."


"Whether rich or poor, it's the ability to make sacrifice real that is the key to life and health."


"Life itself is fluid. You can bathe in it; you can drink it in and be nourished by it; you can float in it but you can never possess it. You can't hold it still and if you could, it wouldn't be life but a mere psychological trick or delusion. Life moves; spring, summer, autumn and winter; day and night; high tide and low tide; birth and death and birth; everything is on the move, even me."


"...I really tire of a world that has become convinced that life resides in feelings and that any immoral act becomes okay if we're being honest at the time."


"To be in the presence of another human being is awesome. It is to have your breath taken away by sheer beauty. It is to be shocked. It is to be arrested. It is to be changed. This is the joy and agony of my life. In a pragmatic culture, people are mostly reduced to a means to an end. When people become problems to be solved rather than people to be met, it's no wonder that loneliness and isolation are our greatest social need. All real living is meeting."


"The fluidity of life is perplexing: Everything that is beautiful is rapidly changing; it appears from nowhere and evaporates without notice. The beauty of life appears without being summoned and it evaporates no matter how tightly we hang on to it. Indeed the tighter our grip, the more complete is the dissipation and the more haunting and embarrassing is the result."


"Within a healthy relationship there is a seed that can spring with life, even if it otherwise looks dead. The power is not in the seed, but in the interaction of the seed with the soil and sun and water."


"I long to gaze and be gazed upon; to know and be known; to love and to be loved. Often I gaze and I know that the person in front of me cannot see me. They see a potential soft touch or perhaps an authority figure. They look to experience or use me but have no concept of meeting me."


"There is no single person; humans are hard wired as relational beings; to reduce humanity to 'one' is to violate the very essence of what it means to be human. The minimum number in the basic human unit is at least two. So the word 'I' could only ever refer to half of something. We in the west love the idea of the 'power of one' but it is a total illusion. So, there is no such thing as success except shared success and there is no such thing as failure except shared failure."


"We naturally develop high hopes for our careers, children, investments and communities for all of these are good things. But good things are fluid and life is to be lived most fully when we recognise the passing nature of everything beautiful."


"Life is about learning to love. Love is about learning weakness in order to set aside personal ambitions for the sake of others. The religious life is about nothing else. Religious knowledge that can be separated from love and life is a blasphemy."


"There is an oblivion that doesn't destroy the self. There is an oblivion that is right and holy. It is the act of knowing that my essence is not located in me, but located between me and you."


"I do not discriminate against this generation but they cannot put up with what we did. It's not their fault that's the world. I've done a lot of hard work and I wouldn't mind to do the same again. Now there is too much of everything, too much choice, and the younger generation is not happy."


"Australia is a strange country. It takes time to know him. Of course it was hard but you have to try something different to have a better life for your family. For us it was a better life here, for schools and everything."


"It is important to value the individual, to have good health, a loving family and good relationships, to have community ties, leisure pursuits. These are all part of our lives. It is important to keep all of our parts in working order."


"I hate the 21st century, I just hate it. It's too technical, and it's driving me nuts. The pace is now too fast, there is no time to indulge or divulge things, to take them in and enjoy them. It's all ephemeral, boom, boom, boom, and we're drowning in information and starving for wisdom."


"This country possesses numerous advantages. We enjoy here one of the finest climates in the world. The necessities of life are abundant, and a fruitful soil affords us many luxuries. Nothing induces me to wish for change."


"Never see a need without doing something about it.


"Whatever, women and children have to be prepared to put other people first and thereby create the miracle of the species which is people living together in harmony and putting other people first, before themselves."


"You need a civil society... Bushfires can achieve the change from society to community. Bushfires can. Floods can. Ghastly crimes and disasters can. Places can change, but it takes blood, sweat and tears. "


"I find endlessly fascinating people's notions of scarcity and abundance. Somebody can have a lot and feel that they don't have anything. Somebody can have nothing and feel as though they have a lot."


"Contentment means you don't have to be happy all the time. Contentment is being OK with where you are at this particular moment in time, and understanding that it might not always be like that, but there are ebbs and flows to living."


"If non-indigenous and indigenous young people come together to learn about each other's cultures, to learn the real history of this country and acknowledge it, this will hopefully improve the way we all interact. "


"We are continuous with all the particles of our physical being, as in our breathing we are continuous with the sky. Between our bodies and the world there is unity and commerce."

DAVID, MALOUF - An Imaginary Life

"I know I can do anything I set out to do... It depends on your definition of failure. Do you fail if you attempt something and learn from the experience? It's about the way you look at challenge - you either see the opportunities or you see the problems. It's only the unknown that's scary. "


"There's no substitute for passion. And if you don't have it, you may as well curl up under a tree and say goodnight. Because life's too much fun to be ordinary. I'm very ordinary at lots of things, but I bloody well try not to be. If you're not good enough to win a marathon at the Olympics, then win the local event. It's about having a go."


"I'm planted in rural Australia, and it's my choice whether I bloom or not."


"It is important to bloom where you are planted. As women you may not get a choice about where you live, but you can choose what your life is like. Your responsibility is to do the best you can wherever you are. "


"If your body is crying out for a change, or crying out that it's unhappy, for goodness sake listen to it. Our bodies aren't machines that get by with a grease and oil change every 50,000 kilometres. Stress is part of life but if prolonged stress is in our life, we have to ask ourselves if we are in the right place, right frame of mind, or doing the right job."


"I need a dose of the natural environment on a regular basis. It balances the bitumen and high rises of Collins Street."


"Revenge is the most destructive emotion. Know that retribution against someone who has hurt you will not neutralise the bitterness of your pain. It will eat away at your very being. Be positive and remember the past cannot be changed."

WALTER, MIKAC - Circle of Life

"Each and every one of us will be confronted by a major challenge in our lives ... We can choose to shut down, retreat into our safety zone and not participate in life, or we can decide to learn from the experience and make a difference to the lives of those around us. "


"Having had cancer, one important thing to know is you're still the same person at the end. You're stripped down to near zero. But most people come out the other end feeling more like themselves than ever before."


"I just can't help but see things differently."


"We maximise the richness of our lives, we increase the richness of other people's lives by, in a strange sort of sense, exposing them to more chances, more opportunities, rather than by saying "This is it. The future is predictable. Your future is predictable and this is what you have to do." The "meaning of life", in other words, is a kind of dance with chance. "


"It may not be easy, life isn't easy, but dreams keep you alive. "


"What is worthwhile in life? I think it is worth living and dreaming. If you don't you may be dead anyhow - inside. "


"Is marijuana addictive? Yes, in the sense that most of the really pleasant things in life are worth endlessly repeating."


"I don't know what my path is yet. I'm just walking on it. "


"I live every day to the fullest extent and I don't sweat the small stuff. "


"Live, love, knowing that we're all free
Now that we are blessed in our country
And realise how lucky we are"

OLIVIA, NEWTON-JOHN - Australia For Me

"Denying oneself one lesson, one learns another, or many lessons. The constellation of disillusion contains an infinity of planets."

HAL, PORTER - The Watcher on the Cast Iron Balcony

"Just be true to yourself and don't do anything that doesn't feel right. "


"As a young person who will inherit the world being created now, I want us to start talking about what needs to happen to prevent this kind of tragedy from occurring again and again. I don't want to live in the world we are previewing right now. We need fundamental change, and it starts with a price on pollution that rids our economy of polluting energy and creates clean energy instead. It starts with increased funding for healthy, renewable energy. It starts with a serious commitment from all political parties to do what is right and significantly reduce Australia's greenhouse gas emissions. I hope some good can come out of this tragedy, and that we use it to have a conversation about what we are going to do this year to make these solutions a reality."

ELLEN, SANDELL - on the Queensland floods

"Perhaps the most reliable route to meaning and joy, to plunging below the surface and seeking more than the superficiality of material ambition, is connection with people, places, ideas and issues. Of these, the most important are people and relationships. And the most reliable route to relationships is conversation."


"If we actually love what we're doing and we go and do what we love, and every day we get up because we're really happy to get up and go and do what we do, you can't actually do that without expression, and art forms part of that mix of expression that makes the whole package of life so enjoyable to be in."


"Cooking is a caring and nurturing act. It's kind of the ultimate gift for someone, to cook for them. It creates all this beautiful stuff, conversation, appreciation, romance. All the most important things in life you do around a dinner table. "


"Young people need to be inspired, told they can achieve anything they set their minds to."


"I love life. There's always something to overcome, new people to meet... You've just got to find your bliss and go after it. That's where the drive is, that's how you find your special place."


"It's not what life does to you but what you do to life that counts. "


"Tragedy is something that happens to a lot of people - it's a tragedy if you react with hand-wringing. "


"My greatest reward is doing something that will last a long time. "

JOHN, THOMPSON - tree grower

"Every act is political. Every act involves choices about how we live, our impact on the planet, and on all other creatures, including people with whom we share it."


"My father Big Max told me many years ago that 'anything you are good at will contribute to your happiness'. Great advice. "


"That was the real gift of having cancer: that I had another go at living the life I really wanted to live. One of the biggest things I learnt was to say no, and to let people deal with it."

ANTHONY, WARLOW - on second chances

"Cancer doesn't just ravage our insides, it frequently does a bang-up job of maiming our exteriors. It takes breasts and limbs and flesh as payment for survival, then leaves us to quietly mourn our missing parts, while we try to reassure the world that we are not defective freaks."


"In life, you gotta do something. And the medical journals keep on saying if you've got a goal or some passion in life, you'll outlive all the other guys who - the bank manager that retired. They gave him a rocking chair and he rocked himself to death. So you gotta have a passion, whatever it happens to be. Whether it's this or something else, it doesn't matter, as long as it's a reason to get out of bed every morning, as my accountant of 50 years keeps on saying. "


"I cannot condone the systematic destruction of the hope and spirit of people who have suffered hardship and pain to reach our shores. They are people who believe that they have been or are at risk of being persecuted in their own country. "


"There was something quite captivating about the honesty, the happiness of kids. Most have an openness and an acceptance which we lose."