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A dialogue session we attended on Tuesday featured Singapore’s first guide dog for the blind and her owner.

He saw more than any of us could.

1. Positive change is worth waiting for.

His first guide dog was repatriated in 1984 after spending two years here. He waited 21 years for society to be ready, heralded by the change in PM who preached openness and tolerance.

Then he brought Kendra in. She’s been here so long that she’s ready for retirement.

Don’t give up when the going gets tough.

2. Look at who we already have and integrate them into society.

We are a country that looks outwards. We bring in foreign domestic workers, foreign labourers, foreign goods.

We don’t see many disabled people on the streets.

But are the blind hiding at home only insofar as we are infrastructurally unfriendly?

If we are socially and architecturally accepting towards the disabled, and they are able to lead full lives, do we still need so much foreign labour in menial and intellectual occupations?

3. The simplest changes make the biggest difference - and all it needs is common sense

Have beeping traffic lights to guide the blind. Japan has them aplenty.

Have automated bus ramps and have drivers test them daily.

Accessibility triumphs money spent on aesthetic considerations.

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"Oscar Wilde said that if you know what you want to be, then you inevitably become it - that is your punishment, but if you never know, then you can be anything. There is a truth to that. We are not nouns, we are verbs. I am not a thing - an actor, a writer - I am a person who does things - I write, I act - and I never know what I am going to do next. I think you can be imprisoned if you think of yourself as a noun."

- Stephen Fry (via creatingaquietmind)

(via creatingaquietmind)

Source: lyblac
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"The fact that I almost died in the Holocaust means that I’m very motivated to make sure that each day is worth living, that my life was worth saving… I had built a determination that I was not going to let other people define me, to break through, to build something new, to not be put off by the conventions of the day."

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The point of communication is miscommunication. The more veracious you strive to be, the more meticulous you attempt to be, you get verbose and slip into deception. You don’t mean it, of course.

Readers with agendas are the touchstone, turning good intent into dross. 

Live with the knowledge that you will always be misunderstood - but smile in the face of that.

That is when you understand misunderstanding and transform it back to gold.

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#1: Don’t make snap decisions. 

People are always right. You are always wrong. You are always punished for their mistakes at the end of the day.

But continue taking risks to find that out.

#2: Be a conscious optimist all the time.

Even when I’m pressed against others - rigor mortis - in packed trains.

Even when the 190 bus service employs Official Shouters to incriminate us like refugees who do not “move in” - when we are already pressed back to back.

#3: Focus on what I have and make the best of it.

A failure to do so will make me forget the URL of my Tumblr - again.

#4: Believe in myself more.

People are always right. You are always wrong. You are always punished for their mistakes at the end of the day. 

But no one else but you have access to your heart.

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The secret to success is gruelling hard work and tenacity amidst scepticism and opposition. 

Soon, but soon enough, when you grow more sure of yourself in inverse proportion to the harshest words, you are there.

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And so I splinter apart while together, shouting silence, swallowing words, before choosing to split the load.

The art of love is the art of selective revelation. 

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aseaofquotes:

Nick Hornby, A Long Way Down

Source: aseaofquotes