I find there to be profound wisdom in proverbs, sayings and quotes and I marvel at the way they are so succinct in communicating messages to the reader. Mostly anonymous, they come to us from past and from across cultures. They speak of the experiences of lives lived and lessons learned. Quotes, like proverbs, make us think more deeply about something.
Each Thursday, I post a Proverb or Saying and a Quote that I find thought-provoking.
I hope you will too.
The proverb this week comes with thanks to Tidious Ted:
Never talk about ropes when visiting a hanged man’s family
– Spanish proverb
You can not depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus
And finally, this week, a quote that is subject to many interpretations:
Many a small things has been made large by the right kind of advertising
*Samuel Langhorne Clemens is better known by his pen name, Mark Twain and was born on November 30, 1835… Mark Twain travelled many roads during his life and patented a variety of inventions. Despite experiencing poverty during his younger years he became a household name, received a honorary doctorate and advised politicians on copyright law.
I can see a connection between the quotes and sayings albeit a little oblique. Tell me if you do? If not, perhaps I have given you Something to Ponder About
19 thoughts on “Proverbial Thursday – Global words of Wisdom”
Mark Twain is right. Today’s media seem to magnify some things more than others
It is quite difficult to take things at face value knowing that it might not be true. It certainly is hard to know what to believe when there is a question mark over the intentions of the entity that publishes. It seems very easy to subvert and sway opinions. Even the journalists themselves don’t always verify their sources and repost stories from other networks. Independent news is hard to come by.
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Wow! The place you went to seems very relaxing. I like the images.
I guess you mean the first image? This is in Norway.
All three quotes remind me of a bit about censorship, or the fact that some of us see what we only want to see. Sometimes, it is the media or what others say to us that give us a distorted picture of reality.
First quote: I’m interpreting that in that we should not talk about the unfortunate, unfavourable times in front of certain people. Or to put it more simply, don’t talk about something that you know will upset the people around you, and upset in a very bad way – don’t push the wrong buttons because that will not win you any connections. So sometimes, maybe we should sweet talk more though we don’t want to – that is what can win up friends.
Second quote: With our imagination, anything is possible. What we see is just what we see. Our imagination can open up a world of possibilities and help see more than what we see with our eyes. Our imagination can even help us pick apart a situation, and help us discern fact from fiction and lies.
Third quote: I’m not sure if this quote is a positive one or not. The “right” kind of advertising is subjective. Maybe that can refer to honesty and word of mouth, or maybe just pure luck that a connection can be made.
I wholeheartedly agree with your interpretation of the proverb, Mabel. It is always preferable to be sensitive to other’s feelings on subjects that may upset them. Sometimes, however a conversation flows quickly and something is said that may be interpreted several ways and one hopes that the listener does not take the words ” the wrong way” – sometimes called “putting our foot in our mouth.” I can often do this without realizing it until after the words are said, although I try always to be empathetic. I guess in this case, some people might change the subject, but if it was me, I would probably prefer the person to apologise in case the words caused offence. Different people interpret things differently and some are more sensitive than others, so this can be difficult!
I think we might have to differ on the second quote in regard to its meaning. It reminds me that we can get carried away with our thoughts and lose perspective. Our eyes present us with the information, at first, and these are the factual, visual signals, whilst our minds interpret those signals. If our thinking is skewed, for whatever reason, we may find our eyes have deceived us and then the eyes can no longer be trusted to reveal the true facts. I am reminded of the saying, ‘Love is Blind,’ in regard to this quote. The eyes of one who has fallen head over heels in love, see only the positives in the one they love. This could be a good thing in their relationship, but also could open them up to vulnerabilities at a later date after the honeymoon is over. I love that you have taken it as a positive, that is so you! You see the endless possibilities whilst I often see the drawbacks. It is a glass half full, half empty situation!
Lastly, the right kind of advertising is definitely subjective! Clever advertising can make or break an event, product, enterprise, venture. Weak, inferior products become terribly popular – even achieve a cult status, even though their quality is questionable. I am thinking the Leyland P 76 car, of the seventies, or the Googomobile, some brand name products, and I am trying to think of other examples, but am struggling right now. In any case, it is the power of the media to persuade us that the product is right for us and that we will be happy when we have it. This is manipulative advertising that finds to find favour in an inferior product. Why is the advertising so seductive? Is it the images, or the words? Is it as the second quote refers, our imagination that is out of focus? Is it our endless quest for that adrenaline rush that comes from a purchase of a sought after product? And in reference to your comment, word of mouth can also be the ‘right’ and most successful type of advertising. Honesty in advertising? I am not so sure that the media and advertising companies are always honest?
I think the quicker a conversation flows, the more unaware we become. That is the more we speak our opinion – no time to think, just respond right there and then as to what we think. The wrong words might slip out, but these are the most honest kinds of conversation.
Agree with you that there isn’t always honesty within advertising. After all, advertising is always targeted at a certain group, to a certain side of someone in order to appeal to them in this material world. Often, the media uses signs like semiotics to get their message across. Or to put it simply, a lo of the time the media are seeking to tell a certain story.
In such a material world, more is indeed more.
When the conversation speeds up, it seems to be because the speaker is more comfortable sharing and disclosing more of themselves, They learn to gauge and slowly trust that the other party is listening and also interested in what they are saying. But nerves can also make you blurt out something without thinking, sometimes to fill the pauses and awkward moments. They may be honest but can also be awkward or even embarrassing. Why do you think we feel embarrassed? Would we have not disclosed what was said or at least said it differently?
The media, by contrast have the luxury of choosing their words or re-taking an advert for TV and telling the story when it is perfect. Bloopers shows are excellent at levelling. I mean that when you watch them it gives you a better, more realistic, perspective and one can see everyone blurts out the wrong word, at some point. Reality TV too, I believe, is popular for the same reasons. Perhaps people are tied of seeing the perfect and want to see how other handle stuff ups or mistakes that are inevitable in daily life. Real life does not need advertising to make it big!!
I think maybe we feel embarrassed sometimes in random conversation because we are self-conscious, that we made a fool out of our self for saying a certain thing. Or feel we have offended someone else. In other words, we may catch ourselves off guard about ourselves and feel that what we said is so…not us.
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And why do you think these words came out at these times. Is the self – conscious feeling the chicken or the egg? It is like a part of our brain circumvents the normal vetting process and the underlying words come out unfiltered. Is the self conscious feeling using up so much brain energy there is nothing left for thought processes of empathy, discretion and tact? This I suppose borders on neuropsychiatry?
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Never talk about sausages when you take your wife’s old but favourite horse to the knackery. (Gerard Oosterman 2017)
Is that your own personal quote, Gerard? I love the way you add to the Proverbial Thursday with your own interpretations! Keep it up, Gerard! And I hope you didn’t speak of sausages that night!!!
It’s hard to top Mark Twain, but on the subject of advertising, I like this quote even better:
“Advertising has made America great, but then advertising makes everything look great.” -Evan Esar
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Aha! This casts a light on what Mark Twain meant in the quote. I detect a cynical note to this? Do you, Mistermuse?
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I plead guilty. Some might even call me sin-ical. 🙂
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That is okay, Mistemuse. We needs cynics to keep us on track!!
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The first proverb seems to be along the lines of’ not ‘rubbing people’s noses’ into something they’d rather not think about. Talking about anything remotely connected to a sad or tragic event will bring back the sadness/ heartache all over again.
The unknown saying seems to say to me that the imagination can override reality. I suppose that happens particularly in people who become delusional through illness, but on a lesser scale, many of us can let our imaginations run away with us. We can also sometimes perceive dangers where there are none. Ias I do when I’m snorkelling! I see sharks coming at me from all direction! Lol)
Mark Twain’s saying is just so true! So many poor films, novels, pieces of art etc etc, have made millions (money-wise) because of huge advertising campaigns. I also think the saying could be applied to the spread of gossip – like Chinese whispers. Word of mouth is one of the best means of advertising anything at all, including malicious lies.
On the first point, it is to do with empathy for another’s situation, isn’t it? If we have empathy, we will know what is safe to discuss or what is not.
Secondly, I agree our imaginations can run away with themselves, leaving us vulnerable to worry and worse still, paranoia. Imagination can be good and constructive, ( I think of those who think ‘out of the box’), but we do have to use logic and realism as its watchdogs! It is logical to watch for sharks when snorkelling but not if there are no sharks known to frequent that area of water! LOL!
Lastly, I wonder if Mark Twain thought of the quote referring to gossip? It certainly is another take on his words, and my word, isn’t the grapevine effective at embellishing and enlarging the truth?
And perhaps sin -ners too, Mistermuse? Lol !!!