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Judah Folkman

Cancer Research

When you operate on cancer, it was different than any other thing. It never stopped bleeding. You could operate on a kidney, a liver, or do any other surgery, and if you lost blood, the organ would stop bleeding. It would turn white. All of the vessels would clamp down and the anesthetist would say, "Stop, we've got to give a transfusion." But in a tumor it would never bleed, and if they could just keep bleeding and bleeding, and there was massive bleeding, and you would use up pints of blood, and all surgeons know that. I knew there was something different about these blood vessels. And the pathologists who were criticizing for example, had never seen the blood, because once we hand them the tumor, it's white, and so to them it's bloodless. And the oncologists, a further step away, had never come to the operating room, so they were looking at x-rays. And the basic scientist has only seen cancer in a dish. And it began to dawn on me that they were missing something, and I said, "These people are wrong."
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Carlos Fuentes

Author, Scholar & Diplomat

Carlos Fuentes: I had two grandmothers, and both were storytellers. One was from Vera Cruz, on the gulf coast; the other one was from Mazatlan in Sinaloa on the Pacific Coast. So I had two oceans at my disposal. I spent my summers with my grannies in Mexico. My father was counselor of the Mexican Embassy in Washington at the time. I think that I became a writer because I heard those stories -- all the stories that I didn't know about Mexico, about my own land. They were the storehouse of these great tales of migrants, revolution, highway robberies, bandits, love affairs, ways of dressing, eating -- they had the whole storehouse of the past in their heads and their hearts. So this was, for me, very fascinating, this relationship with my two grannies -- the two authors of my books really.
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Carlos Fuentes

Author, Scholar & Diplomat

I say, "I'm going to write this book," and now I sit down and I start sorting out chapters and imagining the book and saying, "Tonight, I think that tomorrow I will write such and such." I go to sleep. I wake up in the morning. I go to my table. I take the pen and something totally different comes out, which means that perhaps dreams are dictating part of your writing life in a very mysterious way. You have silly dreams. We all have silly dreams. We are naked on the street. How terrible! We fall off a roof. We're drowning in the sea. Those are the dreams you remember. But what about the dreams you don't remember? I think these are the really important dreams in your life, the underground dreams, the subterranean dreams that come out somehow in your life, and in my case, through literature. Because I can't explain otherwise why I write certain things I have never thought about before. And always on the day after a dreaming night. It's very magical.
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Millard Fuller

Founder, Habitat for Humanity International

Millard Fuller: Linda and I both gained so many new insights. Both of us were professing Christians, but we gained many, many new insights from talking to Clarence Jordan, and one of the insights was the insight about economics. You know, most Americans are religious people, but very few are really serious about trying to discover what the way of Jesus is and following it. It's sort of like we admire Jesus, but he's for church and Sunday school. But in the real world, we do things the way that the culture does it. And what we learned from Clarence Jordan was that if you are going to be serious in your faith, it's an all-the-time, every-day-of-the-week proposition, and that includes how you relate to your poor neighbors. You can't sit in affluence and live in a great big house and be driving around in big cars, and your neighbors are living in abject poverty, and you are going to church every Sunday saying, "I'm a good Christian," and these poor neighbors are of no concern to you. So what we gained from him was that true religion is involved in how you relate to your neighbors. Not just how you relate to the church you belong to, but how you relate to your neighbors. And he did give us the keen insight into how we ought to see our neighbors as people who are equally loved by God. And if they happened to be in a bad economic situation, then if you are able to be of help to them, you have a heaven-ordained mandate to do something.
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Millard Fuller

Founder, Habitat for Humanity International

Millard Fuller: It was not that we physically walked away. We would do mailings. We would write letters to people in Illinois and Indiana and Pennsylvania. They had been supporting Koinonia during that difficult period when they were under attack by the Ku Klux Klans and the White Citizens Council. So we had a mailing list of people who were sympathetic, and when we told them we had this new program, we were building houses for the poor, they were inclined to be supportive. And that was the beginning of what we did. And as we saw it working, and as Linda said, as we saw the tremendous transformation within these families, we began to think, can we make this work somewhere else? And that's when we actually contacted the Christian Church, Disciples of Christ, and asked them to sponsor us, and we moved to what was then Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of the Congo. And we worked over there for three years, building houses, and it was during our time in Africa that we realized that this concept was indeed an idea that would have worldwide implications. And we came back to the United States in 1976 with the dream in our hearts of forming a worldwide work that would build houses for people all over the world and eventually eliminate all substandard housing.
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Millard Fuller

Founder, Habitat for Humanity International

We really had an emotional reconciliation, standing on a street just off of Fifth Avenue in New York, and holding each other and crying. And so it was really when we got in a taxi and started back to the hotel -- and there was a sensation of light in the taxi, and it was not anything spooky or mystical. It was just a sensation of light is all I can -- the only way I can express it. And at that moment, there was a revelation that came to me, and that was, "You should give everything you got away and start over." And I just turned to Linda and I said I just felt very strongly a presence that -- and "I just feel like we should give everything we got away and seek God in our lives." We both came from Christian homes, but we had gotten so far away from it, and she didn't hesitate a minute. She said, "I think that's what you should do."
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