Hope is a feeling that a desired outcome can happen.  Optimism is the expectation that the desired outcome will happen.  Hope is not exactly expectation; we tend to use hope when we know that it is possible that we won’t get what we desire, but there is a good possibility, perhaps with some effort on our part.   Here are some notable quotables about hope.

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Humanity is not without answers or solutions regarding how to liberate itself from scenarios that invariably end with mass exterminations. Tools such as compassion, trust, empathy, love, and ethical discernment are already in our possession. The next sensible step would be to use them.

— Aberjhani

Scared and sacred are spelled with the same letters. Awful proceeds from the same root word as awesome. Terrify and terrific. Every negative experience holds the seed of transformation.

— Alan Cohen

Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is to not stop questioning.

— Albert Einstein

Hope springs eternal in the human breast:
Man never is, but always To be Blest.

— Alexander Pope

In faith and hope the world will disagree,
but all mankind’s concern is charity.

— Alexander Pope

What is important in moments like these is not to think in binaries. Good/bad, screwed/not screwed. There is no doubt that things are bad. Some things, really bad. And they may likely get worse.

But that does not preclude the fact that slowly but surely, some good can be growing as other things fall apart. This is not some syrupy sweet silver lining case for optimism. Rather, it is really about a choice all of us have to make in life, either consciously or unconsciously: will I be a person who is safe and creates good for others?

Will I be a person who stands up? Will I be a person who primarily minds my business and serves myself or try to be part of something bigger? Or will I just be a passive, “neutral” observer of it all?

What I sometimes tell my staff is that the world we are fighting for is already here. It exists in small spaces, places, and communities. We don’t have to deal with the insurmountable burden of coming up with novel solutions to the world’s problems.

— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

There’s always light, if only we are brave enough to see it; if only we’re brave enough to be it.

— Amanda Gorman

Reasoning is a robust source of hope in a world darkened by murky deeds.

— Amartya Sen

In spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can’t build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery and death.

— Anne Frank

I feel the suffering of millions. And yet, when I look up at the sky, I somehow feel that everything will change for the better, that cruelty too will end, that peace and tranquility will return once more.

— Anne Frank

Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come. You wait and watch and work: you don’t give up.

— Anne Lamott

One lives in the hope of becoming a memory.

— Antonio Porchia

Tomorrow belongs to those of us who conceive of it as belonging to everyone; who lend the best of ourselves to it, and with joy.

— Audre Lorde

In the end, that’s what this election is about. Do we participate in a politics of cynicism or a politics of hope?

— Barack Obama

Fear cannot be without hope nor hope without fear.

— Baruch Spinoza

Once you do away with the idea of people as fixed, static entities, then you see that people can change, and there is hope.

— bell hooks

Hope is essential to any political struggle for radical change when the overall social climate promotes disillusionment and despair.

— bell hooks

American families have always shown remarkable resiliency, or flexible adjustment to natural, economic, and social challenges. Their strengths resemble the elasticity of a spider web, a gull’s skillful flow with the wind, the regenerating power of perennial grasses, the cooperation of an ant colony, and the persistence of a stream carving canyon rocks. These are not the strengths of fixed monuments but living organisms. This resilience is not measured by wealth, muscle or efficiency but by creativity, unity, and hope. Cultivating these family strengths is critical to a thriving human community.

— Ben Silliman, Family Life Specialist with the University of Wyoming’s Cooperative Extension Service

Infuse your life with action. Don’t wait for it to happen. Make it happen. Make your own future. Make your own hope. Make your own love. And whatever your beliefs, honor your creator, not by passively waiting for grace to come down from upon high, but by doing what you can to make grace happen… yourself, right now, right down here on Earth.

— Bradley Whitford

Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path.

— Brené Brown

Hopelessness is the enemy of justice.

— Bryan Stevenson

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times; it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness; it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity; it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness; it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair; we had everything before us, we had nothing before us; we were all going directly to Heaven, we were all going the other way.

— Charles Dickens

You’ll never find a rainbow if you’re looking down.

— Charlie Chaplin

However, one cannot put a quart in a pint cup.

— Charlotte Perkins Gilman

I cannot be an optimist but I am a prisoner of hope.

— Cornel West

Empathy is not simply a matter of trying to imagine what others are going through, but having the will to muster enough courage to do something about it. In a way, empathy is predicated upon hope.

— Cornel West, FaceBook post June 16 2010

Hope and optimism are different. Optimism tends to be based on the notion that there’s enough evidence out there to believe things are gonna be better, much more rational, deeply secular, whereas hope looks at the evidence and says, “It doesn’t look good at all. Doesn’t look good at all. Gonna go beyond the evidence to create new possibilities based on visions that become contagious to allow people to engage in heroic actions always against the odds, no guarantee whatsoever.” That’s hope. I’m a prisoner of hope, though. Gonna die a prisoner of hope.

— Cornel West

Pessimism is contagious. And despair. But so is [sic] grit, resolve, action and hope. Courage.

Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.

— Desmond Tutu

They tried to bury us. They didn’t know we were seeds.

— Dinos Christianopoulos
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