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East of Eden: Barbara Brown

Excerpted from East of Eden by John Steinbeck, published by Penguin Books.

Contributed and read by Barbara Brown: "Thank you for listening and for sharing your Thoughts. It has been an inspiration and a pleasure. The website [www.holdthisthought.org] remains active."

While Hold this Thought has done everything I ever wanted it to do -- start conversations, refer people to new sources of good reads, inspire reflection -- it's simply too much work for one person. When it took off nationally, everything just quadrupled. I want to spend time with my family and my LIFE, and not spend so much time on the computer every evening and weekend. I like my life to stand on many legs, but Hold this Thought made for a one-project life.

I am enormously grateful for the good Thoughts that came my way, for the wonderful literature and real live people I met. For the enthusiasm you showed during recordings and for the thoughtfulness you added to the world.

Old Thoughts never die; they circulate around in email and bubble up in Google, so people still find them and think about them.  

This is Barbara Brown, and this is the last broadcast of "Hold this Thought." I thought it only fitting that I close by sharing a Thought from one of my long-time favorite books.

In East of Eden, John Steinbeck writes:

'A child may ask, "What is the world's story about?" And a grown man or woman may wonder, "What way will the world go? How does it end and, while we're at it, what's the story about?"

I believe that there is one story in the world.... Humans are caught -- in their lives, in their thoughts, in their hungers and ambitions, in their avarice and cruelty, and in their kindness and generosity too -- in a net of good and evil. I think this is the only story we have and that it occurs on all levels of feeling and intelligence. Virtue and vice were warp and woof of our first consciousness, and they will be the fabric of our last, and this despite any changes we may impose on field and river and mountain, on economy and manners. There is no other story. A man, after he has brushed off the dust and chips of his life, will have left only the hard, clean questions: Was it good or was it evil? Have I done well -- or ill?'

Well, that was a great Thought to close with. And I must say, I'll miss receiving my daily Thought here in Berlin. Thanks very much for adding to my understanding of what the world's story is about.
# Posted By Allison Brown | 3/31/09 3:39 AM
I'm sad to hear that I won't be hearing from you every morning. But I do understand. Lately I've had to step back, reluctantly, but it was something I needed to do for myself.
We all wish you well, and hope our paths cross again.
# Posted By Mary | 3/31/09 4:09 AM
I can appreciate the enormous dedication it must take to coordinate and produce a daily program. Thank you for the time you've given us. I wish you the very best in the upcoming chapters of your life and look forward to seeing the many ways you’ll continue to touch our lives in the future!
# Posted By Linnea | 3/31/09 7:28 AM
Thank you thank you thank you Barbara!!!
Your program has been one of my daily good things and I'll miss the programs.
More so, I admire you for respecting your minutes on the planet. You continue to be inspiration for me with living your life with intention. Yayyyyyy! Love to you.
# Posted By Guadalupe Marroquin | 3/31/09 7:46 AM
Not only have the Thoughts been wonderful, but it's been a way for me to have virtual contact with a sibling every morning. And Barbara, for the hard questions, it was good and you did well.
# Posted By Liz Brown | 3/31/09 10:18 AM
Hi Barbara--I have to concur with your sisters--I will miss my
morning fix of holdthisthought! and through that my daily
connection to you. I can see now how much time and effort had
to go into the program. I enjoyed them all! Thanks for sharing!
# Posted By Sherry Ray | 3/31/09 1:04 PM
Sad, sad...
Sad, for you've done such a fabulous job, you've spread our horizons, you've enriched our lives. Deep thanks for your commitment and contribution.
It’s been a great run, Barbara, and many happy returns.
Very best personal regards,
# Posted By Vic | 3/31/09 1:19 PM

I'm saddened to hear you are ending production of "Hold this Thought." Its going the way of all the local programming. As the monopolies grow bigger, our voices become smaller.

My best wishes for your future endeavors. How I wish I had the energy to leap up and offer a hand.

# Posted By Nellie | 4/1/09 10:20 AM
What a wonderful Thought to leave us with. Thank you for bringing this program to us for as long as you did, it will be missed.
# Posted By Elizabeth | 4/1/09 3:42 PM
Barbara, thanks for nurturing thoughtful contributions and "putting up" with guys like me!

# Posted By Paul Maguire, PhD | 4/14/09 9:35 PM
# Posted By Roch | 2/20/17 2:07 AM