might of heard ಠ_ಠ
There's plenty of these things stuck in my mind. I won't go into ones that I was specifically told by people, though. Without context, they wouldn't be all that interesting, and I'm not about to give history lessons.
However, there are a few things from literature that have stuck with me for a long time.
I'll start with only one here, from J.R.R. Tolkien's The Children of Húrin. It is still my favorite book to this very day, and it is in no small part due to the first chapter, where these lines come from:
"‘Give with a free hand, but give only your own,’"
"‘All three gifts were your own to give, Túrin: love, pity, and the knife the least.’"
Túrin, the protagonist, receives an elvish knife for his birthday. He decides to give it to old Sador, the crippled craftsman, who told him tales of the past and his own shame.
He would refuse things that Túrin found, or stole somewhere, which brought about the first line, but when Túrin got the knife and offered it freely, he couldn't refuse out of cultural obligations.
Later, Túrin's parents noticed he wasn't carrying the knife, and his mother thinks he doesn't like and cherish it; while the elves were still numerous in those days, a weapon like that was no small thing. So he told them he gave it away out of pity and love for Sador; he wasn't well-regarded due to his status as a cripple. Húrin said the second line I quoted, and it has stuck with me ever since reading it the first time.
To me, this is a profound little bit that probably not many people would really notice or remember. But when you do think about it, realize the message it holds, it is quite beautiful.
I am not entirely sure that it really actively influenced me. It has been too long to compare before and after.
However, it springs to mind whenever I end up giving something to somebody. It makes me realize I'm not just giving away an object, but also a degree of compassion and care. It might not be more than a simple video game, or an ebook, or a piece of candy for a neighbor child, but that's not the point. I'm giving something of myself, a piece of compassion, whether the recipient realizes it or not. Though I do struggle with gift ideas a lot of the time, because it is hard to find something that matches that most of the time.
At the end of the day, I wouldn't be surprised if I've become more generous as a result of those sections. Sometimes it can be detrimental, too, but I rarely find myself regretting the loss of a thing as long as it was given with good intent. And there I went, writing an essay after all!
"Too much, too fast" is something that might haunt me for a good long time as well. It is a pity you often only realize your own pace being detrimental in hindsight.