Quotes


  • The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. - Bertrand Russell
  • For every complex problem there is a simple solution. And it's always wrong. - H.L. Mencken
  • In the end, we will not hear the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends - Martin Luther King Jr.
  • Take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. --Elie Wiesel, accepting the Nobel Peace Prize
  • First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out -- because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out -- because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out -- because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me -- and there was no one left to speak for me. --Attributed to Pastor Martin Niemoller
  • In matters of conscience, the law of majority has no place. --Mohandas K. Gandhi
  • “If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?” - Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
  • The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are. -- Joseph Campbell
  • The wise teach without telling,
    Allow without commanding,
    Have without possessing,
    Care without claiming.
    In this way we harvest eternal importance because we never announce it.
    -- Tao Te Ching
  • It is your karma to fight evil. It doesn't matter if the people that evil is being committed against don't fight back. It doesn't matter if the entire world choses to look the other way. Always remember this. You don't live with the consequences of other people's karma. You live with the consequences of your own (Said to Shiva by his uncle, from The Secret of the Nagas by Amish)
  • Whenever you have truth it must be given with love, or the message and the messenger will be rejected. -- Mahatma Gandhi
  • The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed -- Steve Biko
  • It is easier to lead men to combat, stirring up their passion, than to restrain them and direct them toward the patient labours of peace.- Andre Gide
  • War is exciting for those who have no experience of it - Erasmus
  • "When a man shows you who he is the first time, believe him."---Maya Angelou
  • "Logic can convince but only emotion can motivate." -- Jonathan Alter:
  • There is no greater sign of a general decay of virtue in a nation, than a want of zeal in its inhabitants for the good of their country - Joseph Addison
  • "However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results." - Winston Churchill
  • Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn’t. -- Erica Jong
  • “Let us command the moment to remain.” -- Winston Churchill
  • I’d prefer to be right than consistent. --- Winston Churchill
  • Don't sacrifice what you wish for most for what you wish for now --- Curtis Martin (NFL running back)
  • "You are only dead when the last person who knows you dies." --- gypsy saying
  • Goodhart’s Law: When a measure becomes a target, it ceases to be a good measure.
  • Jean Paul Satre said, "If you are lonely while you’re alone, you are in bad company!"
  • The pain of the future is to be avoided (heyam duhkham anaagatam) -- Yoga Sutra
  • "In the end, only three things will matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you." -- attributed to Gautam Buddha
  • Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” -- attributed to Lao Tzu, founder of Taoism
  • You must go on, I can't go on, I'll go on. -- Samuel Beckett
  • A man who is a master of patience is master of everything else. George Savile
  • We are what we frequently do - Aristotle
  • We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be. -- Kurt Vonnegut:

  • Whatever we understand and enjoy in human products instantly becomes ours, wherever they might have their origin. Let me feel with unalloyed gladness that all the great glories of man are mine - Rabindranath Tagore
  • You got to love to be able to play - Louis Armstrong
  • Nothing great in the world has been accomplished without passion. – GeorFriedrich Hegel
  • We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing. – George Bernard Shaw
  • My way of joking is to tell the truth. It’s the funniest joke in the world. -- George Bernard Shaw
  • Comedians are a much rarer and far more valuable commodity than all the gold and precious stones in the world. -- Groucho Marx
  • “There is a hell of a distance,” said Dorothy Parker, “between wisecracking and wit. Wit has truth in it.”
  • Life is a tragedy when seen in close-up, but a comedy in long shot. -- Charlie Chaplin
  • Think where man's glory most begins and ends. And say my glory was I had such friends. -- W.B. Yeats
  • I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody. - Bill Cosby
  • Throw your dream into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, or a new country. -Anais Nin
  • We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect. -- Anais Nin
  • All you need is a little courage... - Charlie Chaplin in "Limelight"
  • Freedom is what you do with what has been done to you - Jean-Paul Sartre
  • "Let us not take it for granted that life exists more fully in what is commonly thought big than in what is commonly thought small." -- Virginia Woolf in The Common Reader
  • I passionately hate the idea of being with it, I think an artist has always to be out of step with his time. Orson Welles
  • It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into. - Jonathan Swift
  • "Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass; it's about learning to dance in the rain!" – Vivian Greene
  • The only people who become disillusioned are people who have illusions. -Saul Alinsky
  • Upton Sinclair wrote: "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it."
  • Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence. -Robert Frost
  • Aldous Huxley's indictment, "Most of one's life... is one prolonged effort to prevent thinking."
  • Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe. —Albert Einstein
  • Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value. -- Albert Einstein
  • It's not that I'm so smart, it's just that I stay with problems longer. -- Albert Einstein
  • If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough. -- Albert Einstein
  • Barbara Tuchman's advice concerning research: "One must stop before one has finished. Otherwise, one will never stop and never finish."
  • All our science, measured against reality, is primitive and childlike-and yet it is the most precious thing we have.- Albert Einstein
  • Fear cannot be banished, but it can be calm and without panic; it can be mitigated by reason and evaluation. -- Vannevar Bush
  • A man that flies from his fear may find that he has only taken a shortcut to meet it. -- J.R.R. Tolkien
  • To pursue science is not to disparage the things of the spirit. In fact, to pursue science rightly is to furnish the framework on which the spirit may rise. -- Vannevar Bush
  • Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great. -Mark Twain
  • "Whether you succeed or not is irrelevant… making your unknown known is the important thing." -- Georgia O'Keeffe
  • Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness -- Mark Twain.
  • (If you are young and reading this [book] then I ask you to remember just this) You are richer than anyone older than you, and far richer than those who are much older. What you choose to do with the time that stretches out before you is entirely a matter for you. But do not say you started the journey poor. If you are young, you are infinitely richer than I can ever be again. -- Felix Dennis
  • You've done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency? --- Mr.Welch's rhetorical question to Senator J.McCarthy at the McCarthy hearings.
  • Neither genius, fame, nor love show the greatness of the soul. Only kindness can do that. -Jean Baptiste Henri Lacordaire
  • Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgement that something else is more important than fear. ~Ambrose Redmoon
  • When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up. -- C.S. Lewis
  • Don’t cry over things that can’t cry over you. --- M.Dowd, who attributed it to her mother (the quote was in the context of teaching her daughter that materialism and narcissism can only smother life.)
  • Absorb what is useful, Discard what is not, Add what is uniquely your own. --- Bruce Lee
  • Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much of life. So aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something. -Thoreau
  • If the day and the night are such that you greet them with joy, and life emits a fragrance like flowers and sweet-scented herbs, is more elastic, more starry, more immortal — that is your success.” -- Henry David Thoreau
  • Desiderata -- Max Ehrmann
  • To laugh often and much;
    to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children;
    to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends;
    to appreciate beauty;
    to find the best in others;
    to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition;
    to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.
    This is to have succeeded.
    – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all. - Oscar Wilde
  • Beauty is the wonder of wonders. -- Oscar Wilde
  • Rumi quotes: “Sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment.” “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” “When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.” “The wound is the place where the Light enters you.” “And still, after all this time, the Sun has never said to the Earth, "You owe me." Look what happens with love like that. It lights up the sky.” “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field. I'll meet you there.” “Don't be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth.” “You were born with wings, why prefer to crawl through life?” “silence is the language of god, all else is poor translation.”
  • The reasonable man adapts himself to the world. The unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man. -- G.B.Shaw
  • Be humble in the face of facts, and proud in the face of opinions. -- George Bernard Shaw
  • "Enjoy every minute you have with those you love for no one can take joy that is past away from you. It will be there in your heart, to live on, when the dark days come." -- Eleanor Roosevelt who attributes it to a friend of her grandmother.
  • There are two tragedies in life. One is not to get your heart's desire. The other is to get it.-- G.B.Shaw
  • Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.-- Mark Twain
  • There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats. — Albert Schweitzer (I would replace cats with comedy)
  • Rhythm is one of the most powerful of pleasures, and when we feel a pleasurable rhythm we hope it will continue. -- Mary Oliver
  • Only kings, presidents, editors and people with tapeworms have the right to use the editorial ‘we.’ -- Mark Twain
  • Democracy is a device that ensures we shall be governed no better than we deserve-- G.B.Shaw
  • Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. -- Steve Jobs
  • We shall not cease from exploration And at the end of all our exploring Will be to arrive where we started And know it for the first time - T.S.Elliot
  • Distraction is the only thing that consoles us for our miseries. And yet it is the greatest of our miseries. -- Blaise Pascal
  • Architettura e' simplice, ma la semplicita e' difficile! -- Leonardo Da Vinci.
    Translation: Architecture is simple, but simple is difficult.
    Corollary (from Shahana Dattagupta): Life is simple, but simple is difficult.
  • For belief is not faith. Belief is always in something, faith is holding steady in nothing... in the uncertainty of it all. -- Shahana Dattagupta
  • You must never confuse faith that you will prevail in the end – which you can never afford to lose – with the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be. -- Admiral Jim Stockdale who survived a long ordeal of torture as a prisoner of war in the Vietnam war
  • In the long run, we are all dead - M.Keynes (Corollary: In the short run, we have to eat.)
  • No profit grows where is no pleasure ta’en; In brief, sir, study what you most affect. -- William Shakespeare (from “The Taming of the Shrew“)
  • Quotes (include some remarkably pessimistic/cynical ones) by Alfred Nobel
  • I prefer writers who find their writing such a chore, they only write what matters. -- Piet Hein
  • Quotes about science or from scientists/statisticians