Quotations of Wisdom

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René Descartes

The senses deceive from time to time, and it is prudent never to trust wholly those who have deceived us even once. [Q1124]

Buckminster Fuller

Revolution by design and invention is the only revolution tolerable to all men, all societies, and all political systems anywhere. [Q360]

Swami Vivekananda

The Vedanta recognizes no sin it only recognizes error. And the greatest error, says the Vedanta is to say that you are weak, that you are a sinner, a miserable creature, and that you have no power and you cannot do this and that. [Q1142]

David Foster Wallace

It can become an exercise in trying to get the reader to like and admire you instead of an exercise in creative art. [Q983]

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Shallow men believe in luck. Strong men believe in cause and effect. [Q419]

Ovid

An anthill increases by accumulation. Medicine is consumed by distribution. That which is feared lessens by association. This is the thing to understand. [Q1189]

Clarence Darrow

In spite of all the yearnings of men, no one can produce a single fact or reason to support the belief in God and in personal immortality. [Q1101]

Jack Kerouac

Offer them what they secretly want and they of course immediately become panic-stricken. [Q2099]

Marshall McLuhan

A commercial society whose members are essentially ascetic and indifferent in social ritual has to be provided with blueprints and specifications for evoking the right tone for every occasion. [Q1444]

Mohandas Gandhi

Freedom is not worth having if it does not connote freedom to err. [Q564]

Jesus Christ

Love your enemies, Bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you... — Matthew 5:44) [Q2035]

Konrad Lorenz

We had better dispense with the personification of evil, because it leads, all too easily, to the most dangerous kind of war: religious war. [Q1433]

David Hartley

Any sensations A, B, C, etc., by being associated with one another a sufficient number of times, get such a power over the corresponding ideas a, b, c, etc., that any one of the sensations A, when impressed alone, shall be able to excite in the mind b, c, etc., the ideas of the rest. [Q1442]

Stephen Bantu Biko

The most powerful weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed. [Q1544]

Dante Alighieri

The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis. [Q1514]

Marshall McLuhan

The medium is the message. This is merely to say that the personal and social consequences of any medium - that is, of any extension of ourselves - result from the new scale that is introduced into our affairs by each extension of ourselves, or by any new technology. [Q1476]

Margaret Mead

Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else. [Q1415]

Maximilien Robespierre

No one loves armed missionaries. [Q1296]

Joseph Priestley

Will is nothing more than a particular case of the general doctrine of association of ideas, and therefore a perfectly mechanical thing. [Q1191]

Guy Debord

Quotations are useful in periods of ignorance or obscurantist beliefs. [Q713]

Thomas Paine

I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. 'Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death. [Q265]

Meister Eckhart

Words derive their power from the original word. [Q1639]

Adlai Stevenson II

The real patriots are those who love America as she is, but who want the beloved to be more lovable. This is not treachery. This, as every parent, every teacher, every friend must know, is the truest and noblest affection. [Q1846]

Richard P. Feynman

It's because someone knows something about it that we can't talk about physics. It's the things that nobody knows about that we can discuss. We can talk about the weather; we can talk about social problems; we can talk about psychology; we can talk about international finance... so it's the subject that nobody knows anything about that we can all talk about! [Q971]

The Holy Bible

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. — Matthew 5,6, and 7 - Sermon on the Mount - YouTube [Q1611]

Alexis de Tocqueville

Those that despise people will never get the best out of others and themselves. [Q966]

Bob Marley

One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain. [Q639]

Christiaan Huygens

The world is my country, science is my religion. [Q1229]

Dalai Lama

There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosophy is kindness. [Q545]

Scott Nesler

The song He Stopped Loving Her Today by George Jones reminded me of teenage heartbreak. I thought of what people do with fame. Fame comes by chance. It's used for good or not at all. We gauge fame from a triggered emotion. George Jones shared an unbridled empathy divorced from negative emotion. What a rare gift this man provided his admirers. [Q2072]

Molière

Grammar, which knows how to control even kings. [Q2086]

Aristotle

For though we love both the truth and our friends, piety requires us to honor the truth first. [Q844]

Plato

Justice in the life and conduct of the State is possible only as first it resides in the hearts and souls of the citizens. [Q887]

Václav Havel

The recent period — and in particular the last six weeks of our peaceful revolution — has shown the enormous human, moral and spiritual potential, and the civic culture that slumbered in our society under the enforced mask of apathy. Whenever someone categorically claimed that we were this or that, I always objected that society is a very mysterious creature and that it is unwise to trust only the face it presents to you. I am happy that I was not mistaken. Everywhere in the world people wonder where those meek, humiliated, sceptical and seemingly cynical citizens of Czechoslovakia found the marvellous strength to shake the totalitarian yoke from their shoulders in several weeks, and in a decent and peaceful way. [Q1790]

Galileo Galilei

I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. [Q934]

Meister Eckhart

Truly, it is in darkness that one finds the light, so when we are in sorrow, then this light is nearest of all to us. [Q1634]

Miles Davis and Dizzy Gillispie

(MD) Why can't I play like you? (DG) Because you don't hear it that way. [Q17]

Winston Churchill

History is written by the victors. [Q90]

Adlai Stevenson III

The air waves are in the public domain; but the government increasingly represents the private domain. [Q1859]

Mario Cuomo

Poll watching politicians respond with Pavlovian sureness. The touch every button, satisfy every rabid carving with swift passage of draconian and regressive measures. They serve up a binge of new death penalty statutes as though there had suddenly been discovered proof that the death penalty can save lives. [Q1822]

Marvin Minsky

If you “understand' something in only one way, then you scarcely understand it at all—because when you get stuck, you'll have nowhere to go. But if you represent something in several ways, then when you get frustrated enough, you can switch among different points of view, until you find one that works for you! — The Emotion Machine, Introduction, page 6. [Q2031]

Scott Nesler

Ignorance is the act of ignoring the collateral damage of one's belief and an apathetic attempt to seek the truth. [Q549]

Wendell Berry

Let us have the candor to acknowledge that what we call “the economy” or “the free market” is less and less distinguishable from warfare. [Q1337]

Thomas Paine

Belief in a cruel God makes a cruel man. [Q262]

Epictetus

All religions must be tolerated... for every man must get to heaven in his own way. [Q809]

John Adams (HBO Miniseries)

I fear our revolution will have been in vain if a Virginia farmer is to be held in hock to a New York stock jobber, who in turn is in hock to a London banker. The opportunities for avarice and corruption would certainly prove irresistible. — (Unite or Die[5]) Thomas Jefferson [Q1133]

Phil Jackson

Approach the game with no preset agendas and you'll probably come away surprised at your overall efforts. [Q208]

Alexander Fleming

When I woke up just after dawn on September 28, 1928, I certainly didn't plan to revolutionize all medicine by discovering the world's first antibiotic, or bacteria killer. But I guess that was exactly what I did. [Q312]

John J. Sweeney

For globalization to work for America, it must work for working people. We should measure the success of our economy by the breadth of our middle class, and the scope of opportunity offered to the poorest child to climb into that middle class. [Q439]

Marie Curie

Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something and that this thing must be attained. [Q329]

John D Barrow

People assume that because you have graced the same stage as the star act, in front of thousands, you must be reaping similar financial rewards. This is a complete fallacy. [Q1050]

Clarence Darrow

Some of you say religion makes people happy. So does laughing gas. [Q1106]

Plutarch

For to err in opinion, though it be not the part of wise men, is at least human. [Q776]

Oliver Wendell Holmes

Truth, when not sought after, rarely comes to light. [Q1089]

Richard Ruhl

I saw a van with a bumper sticker saying "I am a vet, therefore I drive like an animal." Suddenly I realized how many proctologist there are on the roads [Q2095]

Friedrich Hayek

If most people are not willing to see the difficulty, this is mainly because, consciously or unconsciously, they assume that it will be they who will settle these questions for the others, and because they are convinced of their own capacity to do this. [Q1975]

Herbert Simon

The engineer, and more generally the designer, is concerned with how things ought to be - how they ought to be in order to attain goals, and to function. [Q648]

Thomas Jefferson

The less wealthy people,... by the bill for a general education, would be qualified to understand their rights, to maintain them, and to exercise with intelligence their parts in self-government; and all this would be effected without the violation of a single natural right of any one individual citizen. [Q533]

Nikola Tesla

The scientific man does not aim at an immediate result. He does not expect that his advanced ideas will be readily taken up. His work is like that of the planter — for the future. His duty is to lay the foundation for those who are to come, and point the way. He lives and labors and hopes. [Q1680]

Anaxagoras

Everything has a natural explanation. The moon is not a god, but a great rock, and the sun a hot rock. [Q794]

Lucretius

Such are the heights of wickedness to which men are driven by religion. [Q1564]

Richard P. Feynman

It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before in various periods in the history of man. [Q735]

Robert Fuller

When we're unable to stand up to put-downs, we hate those who diminish us; those who, assuming their own superiority, condescend to us or presume to know what's best for us. When we find ourselves without resources or allies, we despise those who take us for nobodies. [Q1348]

Bono

Music can change the world because it can change people. [Q635]

Herbert Simon

Human beings, viewed as behaving systems, are quite simple. The apparent complexity of our behavior over time is largely a reflection of the complexity of the environment in which we find ourselves. [Q643]

Jean-Luc Picard

If we're going to be damned, let's be damned for what we really are. [Q171]

Óscar Romero

If God accepts the sacrifice of my life, may my death be for the freedom of my people ... A bishop will die, but the Church of God, which is the people, will never perish. [Q1072]

Konrad Lorenz

Every man gets a narrower and narrower field of knowledge in which he must be an expert in order to compete with other people. The specialist knows more and more about less and less and finally knows everything about nothing. [Q1430]

Plato

Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything. [Q637]

Donald Norman

I think there is a tendency in science to measure what is measurable and to decide that what you cannot measure must be uninteresting. [Q442]

Thurgood Marshall

If the First Amendment means anything, it means that a state has no business telling a man, sitting alone in his house, what books he may read or what films he may watch. [Q752]

Senator Paul Simon

While I am a Democrat, and proud of the affiliation, most problems do not involve political philosophy. They are nuts-and-bolts problems for which people of good will should sit around a table and find solutions. [Q1730]

Lucretius

From the very fountain of enchantment there arises a taste of bitterness to spread anguish amongst the flowers. [Q1558]

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Use what language you will, you can never say anything but what you are. [Q425]

Marshall McLuhan

We drive into the future using only our rearview mirror. [Q1487]

Wendell Berry

A teacher, finally, has nothing to go on but faith, a student nothing to offer in return but testimony. [Q1325]

David Hume

The advantages found in history seem to be of three kinds, as it amuses the fancy, as it improves the understanding, and as it strengthens virtue. [Q1360]

Meister Eckhart

When you are thwarted, it is your own attitude that is out of order. [Q1637]

Socrates

Beware the barrenness of a busy life. [Q1315]

James Q Wilson

At root in almost every area of important concern, we are seeking to induce persons to act virtuously, whether as schoolchildren, applicants for public assistance, would-be lawbreakers or voters and public officials [Q1907]

Freeman Dyson

If we had a reliable way to label our toys good and bad, it would be easy to regulate technology wisely. But we can rarely see far enough ahead to know which road leads to damnation. Whoever concerns himself with big technology, either to push it forward or to stop it, is gambling in human lives. [Q1916]

Scott Nesler

Certainty needs not faith, doubt has faith of mistakes. [Q48]

Marshall McLuhan

As the unity of the modern world becomes increasingly a technological rather than a social affair, the techniques of the arts provide the most valuable means of insight into the real direction of our own collective purposes. [Q1455]

Marshall McLuhan

The scientist rigorously defends his right to be ignorant of almost everything except his speciality. [Q1482]

Scott Nesler

I would like to think we're all placed on this planet with the task to do good. Each one of us is given the opportunity to achieve the success of Budda, Plato, Jesus Christ, Michelangelo, Galileo, Benjamin Franklin, Albert Einstein, or Jimmy Wales. [Q1178]

Plato

I never did anything worth doing by accident, nor did any of my inventions come by accident; they came by work. [Q885]

Isaac Newton

I can calculate the motion of heavenly bodies, but not the madness of people. [Q367]

Clarence Darrow

Laws should be like clothes. They should be made to fit the people they serve. [Q1104]

Aristotle

All human actions have one or more of these seven causes: chance, nature, compulsions, habit, reason, passion, desire. [Q837]

Aristotle

I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies; for the hardest victory is over self. [Q846]

Adlai Stevenson

On this shrunken globe, men can no longer live as strangers. [Q1649]

John Boyd Orr

Though the general principles of statecraft have survived the rise and fall of empires, every increase in knowledge has brought about changes in the political, economic, and social structure. [Q1157]

Senator Paul Simon

When I have my "Chamber of Commerce speech" in communities, I tell them they need to do three things to move ahead economically: work hard; be creative; take risks. The same applies to individuals and the same applies to political parties. [Q1824]

Václav Havel

As soon as man began considering himself the source of the highest meaning in the world and the measure of everything, the world began to lose its human dimension, and man began to lose control of it. [Q434]

Alice in Wonder Land

It was much pleasanter at home, thought poor Alice, when one wasn't always growing larger and smaller, and being ordered about by mice and rabbits. I almost wish I hadn't gone down that rabbit-hole — and yet — and yet — it's rather curious, you know, this sort of life! I do wonder what can have happened to me! When I used to read fairy-tales, I fancied that kind of thing never happened, and now here I am in the middle of one! There ought to be a book written about me, that there ought! And when I grow up, I'll write one. [Q1981]

Henry Drummond

As long as the pre-requisite for that shining paradise is ignorance, bigotry, and hate.....I say to Hell with it! — Inherit the Wind [Q100]

Jesus Christ

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. — Matthew 5:16 [Q1227]

Senator Paul Simon

Perhaps being born the year before the Great Depression of 1929 made me fiscally conservative, and the misery faced by so many people made me socially liberal. [Q1671]

Margaret Mead

Nobody has ever before asked the nuclear family to live all by itself in a box the way we do. With no relatives, no support, we've put it in an impossible situation. [Q954]

Democritus

Raising children is an uncertain thing; success is reached only after a life of battle and worry. [Q771]

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