Quote Me: Do you have a favorite quote that you return to again and again? What is it, and why does it move you?
Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, small minds discuss people
I think this quote spoke to me when I realized that I no longer, or maybe never really did, enjoy gossiping with friends. I guess from reading many books and having my own experiences, I hate making judgement on any one person, and I also find it a waste of my precious body’s energy and time. There are so many better things to talk about than other people and their problems. I found myself more entertained and engaged when talking to friends about books, and societal ideas. I feel like I always gain something, and I enjoy it far more than stories of where people from high school are now or how the neighbor in debt afforded his new BMW. I don’t care! Don’t you crave more? Don’t you want to gain something?
I always think of specific friends who remind me of this quote. For example, I have friends that I get together with and we catch up and talk about events and things and school, and then I meet up with a friend where all we talk about is books. I have another friend who I always talk about traveling with, and learning new languages with. Those friends I appreciate in a different, and possibly deeper, regard than my other handful of friends. Do you have friends like that? Have you ever noticed what themes of conversations you seem to always talk about with the same person, or is it just me?
It is easier, no doubt, to talk about persons, because so many disagreeable remarks spontaneously occur to one. It is more difficult to talk about things and events, because this requires a certain amount of intelligence and reflection and information. If we are to talk of things, we must know something about them. And it is our duty to see that we do.
Henry Thomas Buckles once said:
“Men and women range themselves into three classes or orders of intelligence; you can tell the lowest class by their habit of always talking about persons; the next by the fact that their habit is always to converse about things; the highest by their preference for the discussion of ideas.”
I think you can tell a lot about a person just by listening to what they talk about. Although there are a lot of quotes that I love, this one always sticks with me, because I think about some aspect of it every day when I am in conversation with someone. Let me know what you think. Have you ever thought of such a thing? Have you ever heard this quote before, or thought about it in this way?