Introduction and Closing Thoughts By Douglas Schwartz
A Gallery of Observations
- Alfred Lord Tennyson
Hope is a waking dream.
- Aristotle
Hope smiles from the threshold
of the year to come, whispering
'it will be happier.'

I always entertain great hopes.
- Robert Frost
Where there is no vision,
there is no hope.

- George Washington Carver
Far away there in the sunshine
are my highest aspirations.
I may not reach them but I
can look up and see their
beauty, believe in them, and
try to follow them.

- Louisa May Alcott
This new day is too dear, with its
hopes and invitations, to waste
a moment on the yesterdays.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson
It should come as no surprise when I say that that the world, at the present time, is in dire straits. Hostilities among different groups
of people are rampant. Current wars and the rumors of new ones appear to be as abundant as the number of nations on the planet.
Rising food prices and other living expenses are becoming astronomical...and just trying to keep from being mugged, injured or
killed in many cities and places seems almost as difficult as climbing Mount Everest! Considering how bad things are, it is easy to
become pessimistic and agree with Friedrich Nietzsche who wrote...Hope, in reality, is the worst of all evils because it prolongs
the torments of man

While difficult or dangerous circumstances may make one feel as if there is no hope in sight, as Nietzsche himself may have felt
when he wrote those words, it is vitally important, as I see it, to remember that hope is much more than a simple four letter word.
is, in fact, the only ideal that can make a person believe tomorrow will be better than today.

Because I've been devoting most of my time, as of late, on my literary projects, I suppose it is only natural that I've become all the
more attracted to the accomplishments of other writers. For this SPOTLIGHT in particular, I focused my attention on several such
creative individuals who promoted a general sense of optimism through their written words. Keep in mind that they too may have
been struggling with problems in their own lives when they wrote these thoughts, and may have been unhappy as well with the way
the world was during their time. That didn't stop them from being optimistic. Perhaps such adversities may have even prompted
them to write what they did! Who can say?

In any event, I now present the following gallery of observations. As you stroll along, figuratively speaking, keep in mind that even
though these messages of hope may have been created long ago, they are as encouraging and appropriate now as they were then.
When you get into a tight place
and everything goes against you,
till it seems as though you could
not hang on a minute longer,
never give up then, for that is
just the place and time that
the tide will turn.

- Harriet Beecher Stowe
- Oscar Wilde
The basis of optimism is sheer terror.
Hang on to your hat. Hang on to
your hope. And wind the clock,
for tomorrow is another day.

- E.B. White
- Emily Dickinson
Hope is the thing with feathers
that perches in the soul and sings
the tune without the words and
never stops at all.

- Victor Hugo
Hope is the word which God has
written on the brow of every man.

- Henry David Thoreau
If one advances confidently in
the direction of one's dreams,
and endeavors to live the life
which one has imagined,
one will meet with a success
unexpected in common hours.

It's always something, to know
you've done the most you could.
But, don't leave off hoping, or
it's of no use doing anything.
Hope, hope to the last.

- Charles Dickens
Where there is no hope, it is
incumbent on us to invent it.

- Albert Camus
- William Faulkner
You cannot swim for new horizons
until you have courage to lose
sight of the shore.

- Martin Luther King Jr.
We must accept finite
disappointment, but never
lose infinite hope.

- Orison Swett Marden
There is no medicine like hope,
no incentive so great, and no
tonic so powerful as expectation
of something better tomorrow.

- Thomas Fuller
If it were not for hopes,
the heart would break.

- Alexandre Dumas
All human wisdom is summed
up in two words; wait and hope.

- Soren Kierkegaard
Hope is a passion for the possible.
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
In all things it is better to
hope than to despair.

- Thomas Carlyle
He who has health has hope, and
he who has hope has everything.

- Samuel Smiles
Hope is the companion of power,
and mother of success; for who
so hopes strongly has within him
the gift of miracles.

- Helen Keller
Optimism is the faith that leads
to achievement. Nothing can be
done without hope and confidence.

- Charles Spurgeon
Hope itself is like a star -
not to be seen in the sunshine
of prosperity, and only
to be discovered in
the night of adversity.

- Pablo Picasso
Everything you can imagine is real.
- Robert H. Goddard
It is difficult to say what is
impossible, for the dream of
yesterday is the hope of today
and the reality of tomorrow.

- Mary Ann Evans
(known by her pen name - George Eliot)
What we call our despair is
often only the painful
eagerness of unfed hope.

- Henri Frederic Amiel
Uncertainty is the refuge of hope.
- Fyodor Dostoevsky
To live without hope is
to cease to live.

- Mahatma Gandhi
When I despair, I remember that
all through history the way of
truth and love have always won.
There have been tyrants and
murderers, and for a time, they
can seem invincible, but in the
end, they always fall.

- Martin Luther
Everything that is done in this
world is done by hope.

I hope you appreciated what these talented people expressed through their literary achievements. Before we part, allow me to share
the following closing thoughts with you.

As the festive lights of the holiday season once again brighten our world bringing smiles to everyone, try to do your part to keep that
magic alive in the new year. Remember that hope can keep one person...or the entire human race going...when problems appear to
be insurmountable. Believe in your heart that difficult times can be made better, just as they have been made better in the past by
courageous individuals who, in spite of their adversities, kept hope alive in their hearts.

With that in mind, I invite you to join me in spirit on New Year's Eve as I raise a glass and offer the following toast.

To all the good people in today's world who are working hard to overcome evil wherever it may be found...and to the writers and
other creative individuals who are helping to keep hope alive through their positive accomplishments...I salute you all!
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