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Human Nature Quotes

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Quote Author Cited
We take our bearings, daily, from others. To be sane is, to a great extent, to be sociable. John Updike
It's the people who try to be clever who never are; the people who are clever never think of trying to be. Gilbert Parker
Everybody knows if you are too careful you are so occupied in being careful that you are sure to stumble over something. Gertrude Stein
Man, unlike anything organic or inorganic in the universe, grows beyond his work, walks up the stairs of his concepts, emerges ahead of his accomplishments. John Steinbeck
Increased means and increased leisure are the two civilizers of man. Benjamin Disraeli
Perception is reality. Lee Atwater
Against stupidity the very gods themselves contend in vain. Friedrich Schiller
Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world. Arthur Schopenhauer
The opposite of courage in our society is not cowardice, it is conformity. Rollo May
Money brings some happiness. But after a certain point, it just brings more money. Neil Simon
No man really knows about other human beings. The best he can do is to suppose that they are like himself. John Steinbeck
Never underestimate the power of human stupidity. Robert A. Heinlein
Men do not fail; they give up trying. Elihu Root
The greatest deception men suffer is from their own opinions. Leonardo da Vinci
The human mind is our fundamental resource. John F. Kennedy
Zealous men are ever displaying to you the strength of their belief, while judicious men are showing you the grounds of it. William Shenstone
Most faults are not in our Constitution, but in ourselves. Ramsey Clark
Exploration is really the essence of the human spirit. Frank Borman
Talk sense to a fool and he calls you foolish. Euripides
Knowledge of human nature is the beginning and end of political education. Henry Adams
Incompetents invariably make trouble for people other than themselves. Larry McMurtry
The possible ranks higher than the actual. Martin Heidegger
If we could read the secret history of our enemies we should find in each man's life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Real knowledge is to know the extent of one's ignorance. Confucius
We should regret our mistakes and learn from them, but never carry them forward into the future with us. Lucy Maud Montgomery
Memory is man's greatest friend and worst enemy. Gilbert Parker
We swallow greedily any lie that flatters us, but we sip only little by little at a truth we find bitter. Denis Diderot
Desperation is sometimes as powerful an inspirer as genius. Benjamin Disraeli
Opinion is ultimately determined by the feelings, and not by the intellect. Herbert Spencer
All happiness or unhappiness solely depends upon the quality of the object to which we are attached by love. Baruch Spinoza
Till now man has been up against Nature; from now on he will be up against his own nature. Dennis Gabor
He who hates vice hates men. John Morley
We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak. Epictetus
Men often make up in wrath what they want in reason. William R. Alger
Nothing can contribute more to peace of soul than the lack of any opinion whatever. Georg C. Lichtenberg
All men would be tyrants if they could. Daniel Defoe
We are at heart so profoundly anarchistic that the only form of state we can imagine living in is Utopian; and so cynical that the only Utopia we can believe in is authoritarian. Lionel Trilling
Man is so made that when anything fires his soul, impossibilities vanish. Jean de La Fontaine
Zeal will do more than knowledge. William Hazlitt
Fear has many eyes and can see things underground. Miguel de Cervantes
The discovery of truth is prevented more effectively, not by the false appearance things present and which mislead into error, not directly by weakness of the reasoning powers, but by preconceived opinion, by prejudice. Arthur Schopenhauer
Our deeds determine us, as much as we determine our deeds. George Eliot
People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built. Eleanor Roosevelt
To be or not to be isn't the question. The question is how to prolong being. Tom Robbins
We never know, believe me, when we have succeeded best. Miguel de Unamuno
We may not all break the Ten Commandments, but we are certainly all capable of it. Within us lurks the breaker of all laws, ready to spring out at the first real opportunity. Isadora Duncan
So near is falsehood to truth that a wise man would do well not to trust himself on the narrow edge. Marcus Tullius Cicero
Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric. Bertrand Russell
Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less. Marie Curie
Mediocrity knows nothing higher than itself, but talent instantly recognizes genius. Arthur Conan Doyle
It's discouraging to think how many people are shocked by honesty and how few by deceit. Noel Coward
When will our consciences grow so tender that we will act to prevent human misery rather than avenge it? Eleanor Roosevelt
To pity distress is but human; to relieve it is Godlike. Horace Mann
A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true. Demosthenes
If we divine a discrepancy between a man's words and his character, the whole impression of him becomes broken and painful; he revolts the imagination by his lack of unity, and even the good in him is hardly accepted. Charles Horton Cooley
Mediocre minds usually dismiss anything which reaches beyond their own understanding. Francois de La Rochefoucauld
The number of those who undergo the fatigue of judging for themselves is very small indeed. Richard Brinsley Sheridan
Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be. Thomas A. Kempis
Men are wise in proportion, not to their experience, but to their capacity for experience. George Bernard Shaw
A coward is much more exposed to quarrels than a man of spirit. Thomas Jefferson
Towering genius disdains a beaten path. It seeks regions hitherto unexplored. Abraham Lincoln
We cannot perform our tasks to the best of our power, unless we think well of our own capacity. William Godwin
Man is the only creature that consumes without producing. He does not give milk, he does not lay eggs, he is too weak to pull the plough, he cannot run fast enough to catch rabbits. Yet he is lord of all the animals. George Orwell
I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. Thomas Jefferson
It has been said that the love of money is the root of all evil. The want of money is so quite as truly. Samuel Butler
I always divide people into two groups. Those who live by what they know to be a lie, and those who live by what they believe, falsely, to be the truth. Christopher Hampton
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. Eleanor Roosevelt
Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom. Bertrand Russell
There is a charm about the forbidden that makes it unspeakably desirable. Mark Twain
Envy is the central fact of American life. Gore Vidal
Nothing is as dangerous as an ignorant friend; a wise enemy is to be preferred. Jean de La Fontaine
The march of the human mind is slow. Edmund Burke
No passion so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear. Edmund Burke
To err is human. To blame someone else is politics. Hubert Humphrey
Everyone calls himself a friend, but only a fool relies on it; nothing is commoner than the name, nothing rarer than the thing. Jean de La Fontaine
But constant experience shows us that every man invested with power is apt to abuse it, and to carry his authority as far as it will go. Charles de Secondat
Men do change, and change comes like a little wind that ruffles the curtains at dawn, and it comes like the stealthy perfume of wildflowers hidden in the grass. John Steinbeck
Sex is like money; only too much is enough. John Updike
Our culture peculiarly honors the act of blaming, which it takes as the sign of virtue and intellect. Lionel Trilling
The voice of conscience is so delicate that it is easy to stifle it; but it is also so clear that it is impossible to mistake it. Madame de Stael
Nobody speaks the truth when there is something they must have. Elizabeth Bowen
Wild animals never kill for sport. Man is the only one to whom the torture and death of his fellow creatures is amusing in itself. James Anthony Froude
You are never strong enough that you don't need help. Cesar Chavez
A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices. William James
Ambition never comes to an end. Kenneth Kaunda
The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd. Bertrand Russell
Life is a corrupting process from the time a child learns to play his mother off against his father in the politics of when to go to bed; he who fears corruption fears life. Saul Alinsky
The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness. Joseph Conrad
The shortest distance between two people is a smile. Victor Borge
Little things affect little minds. Benjamin Disraeli
Everyone likes flattery; and when you come to Royalty you should lay it on with a trowel. Benjamin Disraeli
Anybody can become angry - that is easy, but to be angry with the right person and to the right degree and at the right time and for the right purpose, and in the right way - that is not within everybody's power and is not easy. Aristotle
The metaphor of the king as the shepherd of his people goes back to ancient Egypt. Perhaps the use of this particular convention is due to the fact that, being stupid, affectionate, gregarious, and easily stampeded, the societies formed by sheep are most like human ones. Northrop Frye
Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so. Douglas Adams
When you betray somebody else, you also betray yourself. Isaac Bashevis Singer
Understanding is a two-way street. Eleanor Roosevelt
It is by its promise of a sense of power that evil often attracts the weak. Eric Hoffer
Defending the truth is not something one does out of a sense of duty or to allay guilt complexes, but is a reward in itself. Simone de Beauvoir
You shall judge a man by his foes as well as by his friends. Joseph Conrad
As long as the world is turning and spinning, we're gonna be dizzy and we're gonna make mistakes. Mel Brooks
To have doubted one's own first principles is the mark of a civilized man. Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.
No tendency is quite so strong in human nature as the desire to lay down rules of conduct for other people. William Howard Taft
The greater the ignorance the greater the dogmatism. William Osler
One never notices what has been done; one can only see what remains to be done. Marie Curie
Every man has his dignity. I'm willing to forget mine, but at my own discretion and not when someone else tells me to. Denis Diderot
Men do not learn much from the lessons of history and that is the most important of all the lessons of history. Aldous Huxley
Public behavior is merely private character writ large. Stephen Covey
From the depth of need and despair, people can work together, can organize themselves to solve their own problems and fill their own needs with dignity and strength. Cesar Chavez
Nothing defines humans better than their willingness to do irrational things in the pursuit of phenomenally unlikely payoffs. This is the principle behind lotteries, dating, and religion. Scott Adams
Nothing seems at first sight less important than the outward form of human actions, yet there is nothing upon which men set more store: they grow used to everything except to living in a society which has not their own manners. Alexis de Tocqueville
Much good work is lost for the lack of a little more. Edward H. Harriman
Men of genius are not quick judges of character. Deep thinking and high imagining blunt that trivial instinct by which you and I size people up. Max Beerbohm
The only white man you can trust is a dead white man. Robert Mugabe
The only thing I am afraid of is fear. Arthur Wellesley
If human beings are fundamentally good, no government is necessary; if they are fundamentally bad, any government, being composed of human beings, would be bad also. Fred Woodworth
Few men have virtue to withstand the highest bidder. George Washington
Man can believe the impossible, but man can never believe the improbable. Oscar Wilde
Don't struggle to get what you want, but modify your wants. Buddha
We humans find it difficult to resist infection by hubris.. Alexander Horne
It is better for a man to avenge his friend than to mourn him long.. Beowulf
Compulsion destroys cooperation. Jawaharlal Nehru
Historic opportunities are missed because we fixate on what folks say they want. And what folks say they want in business and politics is limited to what they believe is possible. Josh Tetrick
The nature of man is intricate; the objects of society are of the greatest complexity and therefore no simple disposition or direction of power can be suitable either to man's nature or to the quality of his affairs Edmund Burke
There is no document of civilization that is not simultaneously a document of barbarism. Walter Benjamin
Always remember, others may hate you, but those who hate you don't win unless you hate them, and then you destroy yourself. Richard Nixon
Radical revolutionaries are so taken up with their theories about the rights of man, that they have totally forgotten his nature. Edmund Burke
People learn the most about themselves by confronting those with whom they deeply disagree.. Gregory Fried
I am a zealot, and I am wildly proud of it. Judie A. Brown
Far from being a loathsome aberration that ought to be purged from our behavior, it turns out that stereotypes are essential life tools, are accurate much more often than not. John Derbyshire
The left hates humanity and seeks to wage war against human nature. John Derbyshire
Reasonable, sensible men can always make a reasonable scheme appear such to other reasonable men. Benjamin Franklin
Corporate greed, where they need more and more and more, regardless of how much they already have, is ruining the economy of this country. Bernie Sanders
I imagine that one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, that they will be forced to deal with pain. James Baldwin
... common sense is very rare. Voltaire
Man is free at the instant he wants to be. Voltaire
No universal history leads from savagery to humanitarianism, but there is one leading from the slingshot to the atom bomb. Theodor W. Adorno
Modernity is not a problem to be overcome but a challenge to be met. Stephen B. Smith
Underlying all the explanations, intellectual constructions and self-delusions, we can still know a good man when we see one. Saul Bellow
From the point of view of evolution, trying to consciously shape the the how your children will turn out is both futile and self-defeating. Alison Gopnik
Sexual intercourse is a momentary affair, terminating in exhaustion and disgust. If it begins in the spirit, it soon ends in the flesh; i. e., the amative, which is spiritual, is drowned in the propagative, which is sensual. The exhaustion which follows naturally breeds self-reproach and shame, and this leads to dislike and concealment of the sexual organs, which contract disagreeable associations from the fact that they are the instruments of pernicious excess. This undoubtedly is the philosophy of the origin of shame after the fall. Adam and Eve first sunk the spiritual in the sensual, in eating the forbidden fruit; and then, having lost the true balance of their natures, they sunk the spiritual in the sensual in their intercourse with each other, by pushing prematurely beyond the amative to the propagative, and so became ashamed, and began to look with an evil eye on the instruments of their folly. John Humphrey Noyes
I used to think that capitalism was human nature. Now I know that it is culture. Milton Friedman
If we compare the present time with former ages, we find that the same tendencies and desires have at all times governed states and peoples. Niccolo Machiavelli
Nothing that is totally voluntary that is painful, ever works. Nina Totenberg
Politics is irrational. Politics is about human beings with their frailties and perversions and distortions or perception, who prioritise things according to their conviction. David Lange
All things living are in search of a better world. Karl Popper
Rationalization may be defined as self-deception by reasoning. Karen Horney
The natural reaction people have when violence has been used against them is to react violently. Sari Nusseibeh
The right to hope is the most powerful human motivation. Aga Khan IV
There is a little bit of the totalitarian buried somewhere, way down deep, in each and everyone of us. George F. Kennan
I am slow to listen to criminations among friends, and never espouse their quarrels on either side…allow by—gones to be by—gones, and look to the present & future only. Abraham Lincoln
Error is the force that welds men together; truth is communicated to men only by deeds of truth. Leo Tolstoy
The people who have sufficient passion for the truth to give the truth a chance to prevail, if it runs counter to their bias, are in a minority. How important is this "minority?" It is difficult to say at this point, for, at the present time their influence on governmental decisions is not perceptible. Leo Szilard
For conservation to be successful it is necessary to take into consideration that it is a characteristic of man that he can only be relied upon to do anything consistently which is in his own interest. He may have occasional fits of conscience and moral rectitude but otherwise his actions are governed by self-interest. It follows then that whatever the moral reasons for conservation it will only be achieved by the inducement of profit or pleasure. Prince Philip
War is the most serious of the complicated relationships of humankind. Christiane Amanpour
I used to try and get things done by saying please. Now I dynamite them out of the way. Huey P. Long
Lenin strove constantly to get the people to understand that the leaders could not do everything for them, that they them-selves, with their own hands, would have to build a new life and defend their own state; in this he proved himself to be a real people's leader, able to show the people the way forward and induce them to take the first step forward fully conscious of their aim, instead of following blindly behind the leaders. Nikolai Ilyich Podvoisky
I am a peace man except when I wish to fight. Henry Ward Beecher
It is obvious that the most despotic forms of social organization would be suitable for inert men who are satisfied with the situation fate has placed them in, and that the most abstract form of democratic theory would be practicable among sages guided only by their reason. The only problem is to what degree it is possible to excite or to contain the passions without endangering public happiness. Anne Louise Germaine Necker; Madame de Stael-Holstein
Before the human race today there are only two roads: War or brotherhood. Charles de Gaulle
There is something delicious in finding fault with something. Pema Chodron
He who would dare to undertake to establish a nation would have to feel himself capable of altering, so to speak, human nature, to transform each individual, who by his very nature is a unique and perfect whole, into a mere part of a greater whole, from which this individual would in a sense receive his life and his being. Jean Jacques Rousseau
Hope dies last. Mexican Proverb
When one must, one can Swedish Proverb
We can scarcely hate any one that we know. William Hazlitt
There is, however, no prejudice so strong as that which arises from a fancied exemption from all prejudice. William Hazlitt
It is in the nature of man to like what he is familiar with and in what he has been brought up, and that he fears anything alien. The plurality of religions and their mutual intolerance result from the fact that people remain faithful to the education they receive. Moses Maimonides; Rambam
If there is no struggle there is no progress…. This struggle may be a moral one, or it may be a physical one, and it may be both moral and physical, but it must be a struggle. Frederick Douglass
Perhaps it is as well to keep an open and charitable mind, and to try to understand why people do things instead of condemning the acts themselves Eleanor Roosevelt
I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief. Gerry Spence
Men are not prisoners of fate, but only prisoners of their own minds. Franklin D. Roosevelt
Most men hate the necessity of revising their convictions. Daniel J. Boorstin
It is hate that binds people together. Love is personal. John Lukacs
The symbol of the race ought to be a human being carrying an ax, for every human being has one concealed about him somewhere, and is always seeking the opportunity to grind it. Mark Twain
By nature man hates change; seldom will he quit his old home till it has actually fallen around his ears. Thomas Carlyle
Man is a predatory animal, and this aspect of his nature is nowhere better suited by environment than in the world of politics. Enid Muriel Lyons
To accomplish great things, we must not only act but also dream, not only plan but also believe. Anatole France
Strong people have strong weaknesses. Peter Drucker
What is government itself but the great reflection of human nature. James Madison
The Chinese people are not a new kind of human nature. Human nature in China is the same as it is elsewhere. When you start in a tyrannical regime to hand out freedom there is no place to draw that line and expect that line to hold. And so it’s only a matter of time before this regime comes down Michael Ledeen
What is learned in youth is carved in stone. Arab Proverb
Those who have more power are liable to sin more; no theorem in geometry is more certain than this. Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibnitz
With most people, strangers are not only enemies, but inferiors. Robert G. Ingersoll
Humans are one another’s enemies African Proverb
Every person is observant of the flaws of others and blind to his own flaws. Arab Proverb
Custom is the plague of wise men and the idol of fools. Anonymous
He that despises his own life is soon master of another's. Anonymous
If you have no enemies, it is a sign Fortune has forgot you. Anonymous
Many can bear adversity, but few contempt. Anonymous
We are apt to believe what we wish for. Anonymous
We are more mindful of injuries than benefits. Anonymous
The great corrupter of public man is the ego. Dean Acheson
I am more and more convinced that man is a dangerous creature, and that power whether vested in many or few is ever grasping, and like the grave, cries, 'Give, give.' Abigail Adams
Men seem to live for action as long as they can and sink into apathy when they retire. Charles Francis Adams Sr.
The Puritans' greatest concern seems to have been to establish a government of the church more consistent with the Scriptures, and a government of the state more agreeable to the dignity of human nature, than any they had seen in Europe, and to transmit such a government down to their posterity, with the means of securing and preserving it forever. John Adams
When anger comes, there is no way of satisfying its demands Adandozan
Men and nations cannot bear to feel inferior. Alfred Adler
The truth that makes men free is for the most part the truth which men prefer not to hear. Herbert Sebastian Agar
Pride, envy, avarice—these sparks Have set on fire the hearts of all men. Dante Alighieri
It is human nature that rules the world, not governments ... Svetlana Alliluyeva
A man without passion is only a latent force, only a possibility, like a stone waiting for the blow from the iron to give forth sparks. Henri Frederic Amiel
Anyone can become angry. That is easy, but to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way, this is not easy. Aristotle
Man is ... a political animal. Aristotle
Men regard it as their right to return evil for evil—and if they cannot, feel they have lost their liberty. Aristotle
It is possible to fail in many ways...while to succeed is possible only in one way. Aristotle
Intellectuals cannot tolerate the chance event, the unintelligible: they have a nostalgia for the absolute, for a universally comprehensive scheme. Raymond Aron
For there is nothing so social by nature, [and] so unsocial by its corruption, as this race. Saint Augustine
The desire for fame tempts even noble minds. Saint Augustine; Aurelius
I cannot comprehend how any man can want anything but the truth. Marcus Aurelius
The trouble with you is that you expect to live without enemies. Isaac Emmanuilovich Babel
The inquiry, knowledge, and belief of truth is the sovereign good of human nature. Francis Bacon
There is one radical distinction between different minds … that some minds are stronger and apter to mark the difference of things, others to mark their resemblances. Francis Bacon
All true ambition and aspiration are without comparisons. Henry Ward Beecher
To destroy is still the strongest instinct of our nature. Max Beerbohm
You cannot make a man by standing a sheep on its hind legs. But by standing a flock of sheep in that position you can make a crowd of men. Max Beerbohm
A man's heart tells him his opportunities better than seven watchmen on a tower. Wisdom of Ben Sira
Every bird dwells with its own kind. Wisdom of Ben Sira
Against human nature one cannot legislate. Bernard Berenson
Not every time there's a disagreement is somebody lying. Samuel R. Berger
If a tree falls in the forest, and no one is there to hear it, it makes no sound. George Berkeley
Ambition is the mother of hypocrisy and prefers to skulk in corners and dark places. It cannot endure the light of day. It is an unclean vice wallowing in the depths, always hidden, but with ever an eye to advancement. Bernard of Clairvaux
Germany has a duty to make war.... War is a biological necessity of the first importance. Friedrich A. J. Von Bernhardi
Scratch a pessimist, and you often find a defender of privilege. William Beveridge
Consistency frequently launches its devotees into obstinacy. Otto Von Bismarck-Schoenhausen
Fear works. It is more effective than any drug, tactic, or torture device. Mark Bowden
Men are herd animals, and prefer to go with the flow, especially when moving in the other direction is harsh. Mark Bowden
A political career brings out the basest qualities in human nature. James Bryce
My home is not a place, it is people. Lois McMaster Bujold
Reputation is what other people know about you. Honor is what you know about yourself. Lois McMaster Bujold
Suicidal glory is the luxury of the irresponsible. Lois McMaster Bujold
The will to be stupid is a very powerful force, but there are always alternatives. Lois McMaster Bujold
There is no safety for honest men but by believing all possible evil of evil men. Edmund Burke
O, would some Power give us, To see ourselves as others see us! Robert Burns
The more I study religions, the more I am convinced that man never worshipped anything but himself. Richard Francis Burton
The obstinate Man does not hold Opinions; they hold him. Samuel Butler
The spirit of the age, as it is revealed to each of us, is too often only the spirit of the group in which the accidents of birth or education or occupation or fellowship have given us a place. Benjamin N. Cardozo
Every government is the exact symbol of its people ... Like People like Government. Thomas Carlyle
Thought once awakened does not again slumber. Thomas Carlyle
It is not easy for me to accept criticism and reassess my way of doing things. Jimmy Carter
Man is worth more for what he is than for what he has. Catholic Church
Credulity without enquiry is a sure way to deceive oneself. Aulus Cornelius Celsus
Men stumble over the truth from time to time, but most pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing happened. Winston Churchill
There is no limit to the ingenuity of man if it is properly applied under conditions of peace and justice. Winston Churchill
The Intellect engages us in the pursuit of Truth. The Passions impel us to Action. Marcus Tullius Cicero
All men prefer a false promise to a flat refusal. Quintus Tullius Cicero
If you make a promise, the thing is still uncertain and depends on a future day .. but if you refuse, you alienate people to a certainty and immediately. Quintus Tullius Cicero
Mende people do well, but not all. Some bad people, same as here. Cinque
The expectation of paternal care on the part of Government ... weakens the sturdiness of our national character. Grover Cleveland
We are all citizens of one world, we are all of one blood. To hate a man because he was born in another land, because he speaks a different language, or because he has different views is a great folly. Desist, I implore you, for we are all equally human….Let us have but one end in view – the welfare of humanity. John Amos Comenius
Men's natures are alike; it is their habits that carry them far apart. Confucius; Kung Fu-tse
Still you can’t worry too much about the future. Life is not a rehearsal. Billy Connolly
No man is a hero to his valet. Anne-Marie Bigot de Cornuel
The most wicked thing that the dark side of human nature has ever come up with. Jefferson Davis
When self-interested motives are strengthened by the apprehension of any danger, there are few persons who will not be induced by them to betray even their best friend. Maximilien De Bethune; Maximilien De Bethune; Duc de Sully
We’re defending the West here … a certain notion of what man is. Charles de Gaulle
Life is a masquerade. Benjamin Disraeli
How profoundly human nature and indeed human relations affect the outcome of events. Anatoly Dobrynin
All the cant and hypocrisy, all the damnable survivals, all the vestiges of old truths now putrid and false infect the air, choke you worse than German gas—The ministers from their damn smug pulpits, the business men—the heroics about war—my country right or wrong—oh infinities of them! Oh the tragic farce of the world. John Dos Passos
It's them that take advantage that get advantage in this world. George Eliot; Mary Ann Cross
A man is the prisoner of his power. Ralph Waldo Emerson
In America the geography is sublime, but the men are not. Ralph Waldo Emerson
The hazards of politics come not from campaigns and elections, as might be supposed, but rather from the nature of the creature that engages in politics. Ambition, love, jealousy, hate and the many emotions and reactions man is heir to frequently affect the course of nation and world more than principles or circumstances or events. James A. Farley
Mere analysis, that is the Party line, was … substituted for the raw, emergent movement of life itself. The psychology of human beings was descended not directly from experience but from a set of political theories. James T. Farrell
The problem is that every single person here was elected under this system. It is not typical of human nature to change what works. Russ Feingold
The public always prefers to be reassured. There are those whose job this is. There are only too many. Andre Gide
It is a maxim of wise government to deal with men not as they ought to be but as they are. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
No two men see the world exactly alike, and different temperaments will apply in different ways a principle that they both acknowledge. The same man will, indeed, often see and judge the same things differently on different occasions. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Today, not a numerous, but an active part of the German people are beginning to realize, not that they have been led astray, not that bad times await them, not that the war may end in defeat, but that what is happening is sin and that they are personally responsible for each terrible deed that has been committed - naturally, not in the earthly sense, but as Christians. Helmuth James von Moltke
We don’t usually know how to see beyond our presuppositions (the reason, of course, why so many false views of indubitable past geniuses seem so strange to us today.) Stephen Jay Gould
Don’t give explanations to those who haven’t asked for them. And although they are asked for, it is folly to give them too eagerly. To offer excuses before they are called for is to incriminate yourself, and to bleed yourself when you are healthy is to attract malady and malice. Excusing yourself before hand awakens suspicions that were fast asleep. The prudent person should never blink before the suspicion of others: that would be looking for offense. He should try to dissimulate with a firm, righteous manner. Baltasar Gracian
Without love, we are not free from our own self interest. William H. Gray
The law of nature is so unalterable that it cannot be changed by God himself. Hugo de Grotius
Men will sooner surrender their rights than their customs. Mortiz Guedemann
Human nature is weak enough and sufficiently beset by temptations without government adding to them and generating crime. Felix Frankfurter
People are extremely reluctant to give up that which gives them pleasure. Sigmund Freud
Men are made by nature unequal. It is vain, therefore, to treat them as if they were equal. James Anthony Froude
A man's conscience and his judgment is the same thing, and, as the judgment, so also the conscience may be erroneous. Thomas Hobbes
The fanatic ... sacrifices his life to prove his worth. Eric Hoffer
Certitude is not the test of certainty. We have been cock sure of many things that were not so ... Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.
A certain portion of the human race / Has certainly a taste for being diddled. Thomas Hood
Little minds are tamed and subdued by misfortune; but great minds rise above it. Washington Irving
Distrust naturally creates distrust. John Jay
I have not observed men's honesty to increase with their riches. Thomas Jefferson
The rights of human nature are deeply wounded by this infamous practice. Thomas Jefferson
Now you folks come on and be happy, come on and be happy. Lyndon B. Johnson
Community ends with coercion; it doesn't begin there. Stephen Macedo
Men are not altogether bad or altogether good. Niccolo Machiavelli
Whoever takes it upon himself a commonwealth and prescribe laws must presuppose all men naturally bad, and that they will yield to their innate evil passions as often as they can do so with safety. Niccolo Machiavelli
When neither their property nor their honor is touched, the majority of men live content. Niccolo Machiavelli
Whoever desires to found a nation and give it laws must begin by assuming that all men are bad and always ready to display their evil nature. Niccolo Machiavelli
The business of the law is to make sense of the confusion of what we call human life—to reduce it to order but at the same time to give it possibility, scope, even dignity. Archibald MacLeish
The fact that a man is driven back on feelings and instincts to justify an action or course of action which he has thought over and discussed, is good evidence that what he calls his feelings and instincts are at variance with his better judgment … and may therefore be worthless or dangerous guides in any wider matter involving the fate of his country or his fellow-countrymen. John Eoin MacNeill
Power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will be ever liable to abuse. James Madison
Force is never more operative than when it is known to exist but is not brandished. Alfred Thayer Maham
People are violent by nature. That’s why we rule the earth; we beat the crap out of everyone else. Drew Markham
Hell hath no limits, nor is circumscribed in one self place; for where we are is Hell, and where Hell is, there must we ever be. Christopher Marlowe
Those are most desirous of honor and glory who cry out the loudest of its abuse and the vanity of the world. Baruch Spinoza
No one has a right to obstruct another exercising his faculties innocently for the relief of sensibilities made a part of his nature. Thomas Jefferson
All men are born free, every one comes into the world with a right to his own person, which includes the liberty of moving and using it at his own will. This is what is called personal liberty Thomas Jefferson
In truth, I do not recollect in all the animal kingdom a single species but man which is eternally and systematically engaged in the destruction of its own species. Thomas Jefferson
I do not believe with the Rochefoucaults and the Montaignes that fourteen out of fifteen men are rogues. I believe a great abatement from that proportion may be made in favor of general honesty. Thomas Jefferson
Mankind soon learn to make interested uses of every right and power which they possess, or may assume. Thomas Jefferson
In every government on earth is some trace of human weakness, some germ of corruption and degeneracy, which cunning will discover, and wickedness insensibly open, cultivate and improve. Thomas Jefferson
That every man shall be made virtuous by any process whatever is, indeed, no more to be expected than that every tree shall be made to bear fruit, and every plant nourishment. Thomas Jefferson
Hypocrisy is the most difficult and nerve-racking vice that any man can pursue; it needs an unceasing vigilance and a rare detachment of spirit. It cannot, like adultery or gluttony, be practiced at spare moments; it is a whole-time job. W. Somerset Maugham
Tolerance is only another name for indifference. W. Somerset Maugham
The cultivation of the ego must recognize bounds in the lives of states as in private life, in order not to be reduced to absurdity. Klemens von Metternich
After the primary necessities of food and raiment, freedom is the first and strongest want of human nature. John Stuart Mill
It is an adherent condition of human affairs that no intention, however sincere, of protecting the interests of others, can make it safe or salutary to tie up their own hands. John Stuart Mill
Stupidity is much the same all the world over. John Stuart Mill
That so few dare to be eccentric marks the chief danger of the time. John Stuart Mill
The bad propensities of human nature are only kept within bounds when they are allowed no scope for their indulgence John Stuart Mill
But what will not ambition and revenge descend to? John Milton
The world is divided into those who want to become someone and those who want to accomplish something. Jean Monnet
We find those who do not agree with us disagreeable. Michel de Montaigne
On the most exalted throne in the world, we are still seated on nothing but our arse. Michel de Montaigne
All men are animals; princes are animals whom no one has tied up. Charles de Montesquieu
Human nature, in which the laws of politics have their roots, has not changed since the classical philosophies of China, India, and Greece endeavored to discover those laws. Hans Morgenthau
Changing ideas is a strain not to be lightly incurred, particularly when these ideas are intimately related to one’s self-esteem ... men have elaborated an explanation for their situation in life.... Their rationales are endowed with moral qualities Robert E. Lane
The meanest worm that crawls upon the earth, when trampled upon, will endeavor to recoil and strike back, and I say that the guilt of the rebellion does not rest with these men [the Metis rebels] so much as those who provoked them. Wilfrid Laurier
There is a kind of theme that runs through the modern world that human relationships should be looked at in terms of power relationships, in terms of the manipulation of power. That is one of the really wicked ways of looking at the world. It strips people of their humanness. Edward Levi
The next frontier is not in front of us but inside us. Joseph I. Lieberman
You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time. Abraham Lincoln; Phineas Taylor Barnum
Folks who have no vices have very few virtues. Abraham Lincoln
Human action can be modified to some extent, but human nature cannot be changed. Abraham Lincoln
The tendency of the casual mind is to pick out or stumble upon a sample which supports or defies its prejudices, and then to make it representative of a whole class. Walter Lippmann
Hypocrisy is a fearful evil, and every thing which has a tendency to produce it should be avoided. Archibald Alexander
It comes to pass that men do so magnify their own opinions, and are as censorious of any that differ from them in lesser things Richard Baxter
A tree falls the way it leans. Bulgarian Proverb
A murder may be forgiven, an affront never Chinese Proverb
A wise person would never be eager to ask for acknowledgment of his or her contribution. Chinese Proverb
Men trip not on mountains they trip on molehills. Chinese Proverb
Once one feels content about what one has, then humiliation does not arise. If one could never feel content, one would never even get what one wished to have. Chinese Proverb
People could empathize with other people who had gone through the same experience as they had. Chinese Proverb
When one is having good fortune, one's mind tends to be clear. When one is struck by a disaster, one's mind tends to be muddled. Chinese Proverb
When the water is deep enough, we can tell who is tall. Chinese Proverb
Wild beasts hate nets, and people hate their superiors. Chinese Proverb
In all Places it is observed, that Great Men alwayes have their Followers, who hang on their Skirts; and some who have no thoughts of their own, make the Rich and Powerful their Oracle John Colman
We must select the illusion which appeals to our temperament,, and embrace it with passion. Cyril Connolly
It is hard to imagine, considering the inherent silliness, cruelty and superstition of the human race, how it has contrived to last as long as it has. The witch-hunting, the torturing, the gullibility, the massacres, the intolerance, the wild futility of human behaviour over the centuries is hardly credible. And the laws, as they stand today, are almost inconceivably stupid. With all this brilliant scientific knowledge of atom splitting and nuclear physics, etc., we are still worshipping at different shrines, imprisoning homosexuals, imposing unnecessary and completely irrelevant restrictions on each other. Hearts can be withdrawn from human beasts, dead hearts, and, after a little neat manipulation, popped back again as good as new. The skies can be conquered. Sputniks can whiz round and round the globe and be controlled and guided. People are still genuflecting before crucifixes and Virgin Marys, still persecuting other people for being coloured or Jewish or in some way different from what they apparently should be. There are wars being waged at this very moment in Indonesia, Algeria, the Middle East, Cyprus, etc. The Pope still makes pronouncements against birth control. The Ku-Klux-Klan is still, if permitted, ready to dash out and do some light lynching. God, for millions of people, is still secure in his heaven, and My Fair Lady opened in London last night. Noel Coward
The human mind always makes progress, but it is in spirals. Madame de Stael-Holstein; Anne Louise Germaine Necker
Every creature that lives climbs up its own genealogical tree before it reaches its mature condition. All animals living, or that ever have lived, are united together by blood relationship of varying nearness or remoteness, and every animal now in existence has a pedigree stretching back, not merely for ten or a hundred generations, but through all geologic time since life first commenced on the earth. Henry Drummond
Some people like to reform everything they can get their hands on. Others want to fold away and worship whatever is presented to them by the caprice of history. Max Eastman
The whole world of mankind is divided into these two sorts, those that are God's visible people; and those that are of the visible kingdom of Satan. Jonathan Edwards
Hitch your wagon to a star Ralph Waldo Emerson
It isn't what they say about you, it's what they whisper Errol Flynn
The ancients called happy those who learned caution from the danger of others...as wax receives its impression from a seal, so the character of human life is shaped by example Frederick II
How easy it is to say the wrong thing! How easy it is not to recognize one has said the wrong thing! Hugh Gaitskell
Believe those who are seeking the truth; doubt those who find it. Andre Gide
I am much disposed to believe in Atlantis. William E. Gladstone
Expecting something for nothing is the most popular form of hope Arnold H. Glasow
A man must himself be cleansed, before cleansing others Gregory of Nazianzus
There are many who find a good alibi far more attractive than an achievement. For an achievement does not settle anything permanently. We still have to prove our worth anew each day: we have to prove that we are as good today as we were yesterday. But when we have a valid alibi for not achieving anything we are fixed, so to speak, for life. Eric Hoffer
How few are there, who, having a family, children, and relations, do not spend more on the maintenance and education of these than on their own pleasures David Hume
It has always been found, that the virtuous are far from being indifferent to praise. David Hume
Man did not evolve but was created. Jehovah's Witnesses
The individual is prior to society and society must be ordered to the good of the individual. John XXIII
Every man has a right by nature to possess property as his own. Leo XIII
Every human creative endeavor is subject to mathematical law that you’re not always going to be right all the time. Gerald Levin
Youth is not a period of time. It is a state of mind, a result of the will, a quality of the imagination, a victory of courage over timidity, and the taste of adventure over the love of comfort. A man doesn't grow old because he's lived a certain number of years, he grows old because he deserts his ideal. The years may wrinkle his skins, but deserting his ideals wrinkles his soul. Preoccupation, fears, doubts, and despair are dust before death. You will remain young as long as you are open to what is beautiful, good, great and receptive to the messages of other men and women and nature and of God. If one day you should become bitter, pessimistic, and gnawed by despair, may God have mercy on your old man's soul. Douglas MacArthur
Man makes his own history, but he does not make it out of the whole cloth; he does not make it out of conditions chosen by himself, but out of such as he finds close at hand. Karl Marx
There is no right more fundamental than the right to be born and reared with all the dignity the human person deserves. John J. Myers
Once a person insists on how you are to think he immediately begins to insist on how you are to behave. Harold Nicolson
There is no rational creature which is not capable both of good and evil Origen; Origenes Adamantius
As humans become civilized, the survival rate of the lazy, botched and dim-witted grow in inverse proportion to the productive segment since nature can no longer remove them from the species. Elmer Pendell
A falsehood resulting in conciliation is better than a truth producing trouble Persian Proverb
When qualities have become fixed in men by nature or by the training of a long period of time, it is impossible for them to lay them aside thus lightly. Procopius of Caesarea
It is human natures to find scapegoats. When things are going badly people try and find someone to blame. Ashraf Jehangir Qazi
There is another very specific quality which distinguishes them [man from animals], and which will admit of no dispute. This is the faculty of self-improvement, which, by the help of circumstances, gradually develops all the rest of our faculties, and is inherent in the species as in the individual: whereas a brute is, at the end of a few months, all he will ever be during his whole life, and his species, at the end of a thousand years, exactly what it was the first year of that thousand. Jean Jacques Rousseau
The first thing a man will do for his ideals is lie. Joseph A. Schumpeter
Unbridled arrogance is worse than pride; for if pride will not break a superior, arrogance will not brook and equal. Henry I. Suger
Each person is a link, weak or strong, in an endless chain. Ida Tarbell
Mad ambition trumpeteth to all Nathaniel Parker Willis
Every man might have need of others, and from hence they might be all knit more nearly together in the Bonds of brotherly affection. From hence it appears plainly that no man is made more honorable than another or more wealthy … out of any particular and singular respect to himself, but for the glory of his creator and the common good of the creature, man John Winthrop
There is no true freedom where life is not welcomed and loved; and there is no fullness of life except in freedom. John Paul II; Karol Jozef Wojtyla
… in contriving any system of government and fixing the several checks and controls of the constitution, every man ought to be supposed a knave and to have no other end, in all his actions, than private interest. By this interest we must govern him and, by means of it, make him, notwithstanding his insatiable avarice and ambition, cooperate to public good. David Hume
In the final analysis we all inhabit the same planet, we all breath the same air, we all cherish our children’s future, and we are all mortal. John F. Kennedy
When you empower people you sign up for a life of uncertainty and change. Bettany Hughes
God has given man no sharper spur to victory than contempt of death. Hannibal
It is not the multitude of ale-houses . . . that occasions a general disposition to drunkenness among the common people; but that disposition, arising from other causes, necessarily gives employment to a multitude of ale-houses Adam Smith
Many of the former Slaves are only nominally free, for the servile spirit is still within them. Ivan Derer
War between the proletariat and the capitalist for their respective shares in the produce; on one side, wages, on the other, profits; each side exerting itself to carry off a maximum. Man becomes a wolf for his fellow-man. It is a question of eating one’s brother or being eaten by him. War between workers and workers for the sharing of wages. War between capitalists and capitalists for the sharing of profits. Jules Guesde; Jules Bazile
It is as much in the order of nature that men should enslave each other as that animals should prey upon each other. William Harper
The best way to keep loyalty in a man's heart is to keep money in his purse. Irish Proverb
there are some people of a timid or very opportunists mind who press on us the necessity of leading people on by little and little, concealing the object they have in view, until people are so far committed to the steps to be taken towards it that they cannot draw back again William Morris
The opinions of people are determined by their interests. Jean-Baptiste-Antoine Suard
We hope vaguely, we dread precisely; our fears are infinitely more precise than our hopes Paul Valery
I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart. Anne Frank
The ancients called happy those who learned caution from the danger of others Frederick II
A dominion then, whose well-being depends on any man's good faith, and whose affairs cannot be properly administered, unless those who are engaged in them will act honestly, will be very unstable. On the contrary, to insure its permanence, its public affairs should be so ordered, that those who administer them, whether guided by reason or passion, cannot be led to act treacherously or basely. Baruch Spinoza
Every individual wishes the rest to live after his own mind, and to approve what he approves, and reject what he rejects. Baruch Spinoza
The more, therefore, we consider man to be free, the less we can say, that he can neglect to use reason Baruch Spinoza
Man always needs a rein, and even if it might be ridiculous to sacrifice to fauns, or sylvans, or naiads, it is much more reasonable and more useful to venerate these fantastic images of the Divine than to sink into atheism. An atheist who is rational, violent, and powerful, would be as great a pestilence as a blood-mad, superstitious man Voltaire
Surely one will not expect men to be less moral than women, nor less capable of disciplining their desires Musonius; Musonius Rufus
Women are not by nature inferior to men... Diogenes
Virtue is the same for women and men alike. Antisthenes
Law is a special realm, different from the related ethical realm, as it does not qualify the inner conditions of the human heart. Russian Orthodox Church
We are usually convinced more easily by reasons we have found ourselves than by those which have occurred to others Blaise Pascal
All human knowledge thus begins with intuitions, proceeds thence to concepts, and ends with ideas. Immanuel Kant
Because of the demand for luxury articles, they become customary, and thus come to be necessities Ibn Khaldun
He who wants a great deal must not ask for little. Italian Proverb
Those who say it can’t be done are usually interrupted by those who are doing it. James Baldwin
The curse of the human race is not that we are so different from each other, but that we are so alike. Salmon Rushde
We sometimes miss the inner working of government….most people wander around, make mistakes, and put on their pants just the way we do…. It’s not all this big conspiracy. Tim Russert
The hand that receives is always lower than the hand that gives. African Proverb
How selfish soever man may be supposed, there are evidently some principles in his nature, which interest him in the fortune of others, and render their happiness necessary to him. Adam Smith
We believe what we want to believe, what we like to believe, what suits our prejudices and fuels our passions. Sydney J. Harris
For thousands of years, the natural tendency of elites everywhere has been to monopolize power rather than restrain it. Larry Diamond
People change when they have to – not when we tell them to. Thomas Friedman
Conservatives believe that human nature is what makes us imperfectible. Liberals believe that human nature can be changed and perfected. Mike Rosen
Saying is one thing and doing is another. Michel de Montaigne
By striving to do the impossible, man has always achieved what is possible. Those who have cautiously done no more than they believed possible have never taken a single step forward Mikhail Bakunin
Everybody lives for something better to come. That's why we want to be considerate of every man— Who knows what's in him, why he was born and what he can do? Maxim Gorky; Aleksei Maximovitch Peshkov
We hear only those questions for which we are in a position to find answers Friedrich Nietzsche
Any prediction of the future is certainly a lie in order to sell a position. Michael Crichton
Error is a hardy plant: it flourisheth in every soil. Martin Farquhar Tupper
Some are smart but they are not wise Shoshone Indian Proverb
Failures mire us in dogmatism and tunnel vision Stephen Jay Gould
It is far from easy to determine whether Nature has proved to man a kind parent or a merciless stepmother. Pliny the Elder
But we Americans are as other men, exactly. Of one blood, one species, one brain, one figure, one fundamental set of collective instincts, one solitary body of information, one everything. Superiority and inferiority are individual, not racial or national. Philip Wylie
People in general have no notion of the sort and amount of evidence often needed to prove the simplest matter of fact. Peter Latham
People in general have no notion of the sort and amount of evidence often needed to prove the simplest matter of fact. Peter Latham
Knowledge which ... transcends the bounds, the prejudices and pre-judgments of any one society and culture is not an illusion but, on the contrary, a glorious and luminous reality. Just how it was achieved remains subject to debate. Ernest Andre Gellner
Greed, greed, greed. That’s the fundamental problem of mankind. If we can solve that problem, the rest of man’s problems would follow. The only thing that can undermine our free society is greed. Dwight D. Eisenhower
There is no such thing as a saint without a past or a sinner without a future. Christopher Dodd
… adjudged not to him who had the truth on his side, but by the last word in the dispute. John Locke
The level of real income is not what determines whether they are happy or not. It’s their relative place in the pecking order. Alan Greenspan
Those bureaucrats who are shrewd analysts of human nature, then, and who understand the way rulers operate, will, if they see that the cherished policy of their President is in grave error, tend to keep their mouths shut, and let some other sucker be the messenger of bad news and get shot down. Murray Rothbard
The Iron Law of Oligarchy: every field of human endeavor, every kind of organization, will always be led by a relatively small elite. Murray Rothbard
I don’t see how our country can produce such men as Robert E. Lee, John J Pershing, Eisenhower and Bradley and at the same time produce Custers, Pattons, and MacArthurs. Harry S Truman
We contend against reason, philosophy, and nature itself; forget the great rule of doing to others as we would they should do unto us ; and after wasting our blood and treasure to no purpose, we at last sit down faint and exhausted, abandon our vain projects only because it is impossible to pursue them, and then leave it to the reasoners of a succeeding age to show how egregious has been our folly, and how blind our fury. William Smyth
The secret of progress, the perpetual satisfying of wants followed by the springing up of new wants, is the secret of individual unrest and disappointment. Arnold J. Toynbee
We ascend the hill-tops of philosophy, not to gaze up at the ever-visible heavens, but to embrace in one grand view the human world beneath us. Arnold J. Toynbee
Almost all men are born under it, all men are used to it, few men are used to anything else; till of late years nobody ever dispraised it, ... men were reconciled to mixed monarchy in England by the same causes by which they were reconciled to pure monarchy in Morocco, Turkey, and Hindustan. Jeremy Bentham
You cannot change the psychology of a people by a coup d'etat, or by some quick process of political chemistry convert an idle nobleman into a serious worker, or a medical student into a full-blown statesman. Herbert A. L. Fisher
… a crowd is more than the sum of the individuals who compose it. The collective body thinks and acts in ways which the component units thinking and acting for themselves would never sanction and would often reprobate. In general the action of the crowd is more emotional and less intellectual than the action of an individual. The nerve counts for more, the brain for less. Waves of sentiment or cruelty pass through the collective body with a force which the individuals who compose it find it difficult to comprehend, when they are removed from the contagion of their neighbours… Herbert A. L. Fisher
Men are corrupt and will be so … laws must be invented to check and balance the original and ineradicable perversion of human nature. Henry Ireton
With the fundamentalist Islamic fanatics of today, there is no dialogue possible either, because for them all others are “infidel dogs”. As soon as the Other becomes a wrongdoer or an infidel, dialogue becomes impossible. Edgar Morin
All living souls welcome whatever they are ready to cope with; all else they ignore, or pronounce to be monstrous and wrong, or deny to be possible George Santayana
He who points a gun kills. Arab Proverb
Mercy and anger do not go together. Arab Proverb
A single death is a tragedy, a million deaths is a statistic. Joseph Stalin
Are the Indian Musalmans bound by their religion to rebel against the Queen? Richard Southwell Bourke, 6th Earl of Mayo
Conflicts arouse tremendous passions and passion clouds judgment. Zbigniew Brzezinski
Humans have a tendency towards short-term thinking. Jared Diamond
Men will face destructive cannon and mortars, engage each other in the clashing of arms, and meet the horrors of war undaunted, but the devil and his banditti of fiends and emissaries fright them out of their wits… Ethan Allen
So much stupidity has already oppressed the wretched world that Christians now believe things so absurd that no one ever before could persuade the pagans to believe them. Agobard of Lyons
Comets, earthquakes, volcanoes, and northern lights (in the night,) with many other extraordinary phenomena or appearances intimidate weak minds, and are by them thought to be miraculous, although they undoubtedly have their proper natural causes. Ethan Allen
The bulk of mankind, even in those nations which are most celebrated for learning and wisdom, are still carried down the torrents of superstition, and entertain very unworthy apprehensions Ethan Allen
It is natural to man to indulge in the illusions of hope. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth …I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it. Patrick Henry
Different men often see the same subject in different lights Patrick Henry
Each century believes its fight to be weightier than that of all others preceding it. Heinrich Heine
The ends you serve that are selfish will take you no further than yourself; but the ends you serve that are for all, in common, will take you even into eternity. Marcus Garvey
The sacred rights of mankind are not to be rummaged for, among old parchments, or musty records. They are written, as with a sun beam in the whole volume of human nature, by the hand of the divinity itself; and can never be erased or obscured by mortal power. Alexander Hamilton
We can't solve any problem without first solving the problem of human nature Ashley Montague
You show me a murderer, and I'll show you a person who's been failed in the supreme need for love, who never learned how to love, and will hate Ashley Montague
You are never dedicated to something you have complete confidence in. No one is fanatically shouting that the sun is going to rise tomorrow. They know it's going to rise tomorrow. When people are fanatically dedicated to political or religious faiths or any other kinds of dogmas or goals, it's always because these dogmas or goals are in doubt. Robert M. Pirsig
We only half live when we only half think Voltaire
People look for an edge in an uncertain world. Richard A. Wolff
Failure is just another step… Julie Eisenberg
For such is the disease of wealth, which knows no limit to its desire of more... Gregory of Nazianzus
No legislation can suppress nature …. We can refuse to brand an act of nature as a crime, and to impute to vice what is due to ignorance. Tennessee Claflin
The history of Western science confirms the aphorism that the great menace to progress is not ignorance but the illusion of knowledge. Daniel J. Boorstin
Some people would believe anything, especially if it eliminates awkward social and political problems. Thomas Balogh
Ordinary people need extraordinary examples. Lois McMaster Bujold
Mankind likes to think in terms of extreme opposites. John Dewey
Error is the stuff of which the web of life is woven, and he who lives longest and wisest is only able to weave out the more of it. Thomas Jefferson
Man [is] a rational animal, endowed by nature with rights and with an innate sense of justice. Thomas Jefferson
Men, according to their constitutions and the circumstances in which they are placed, differ honestly in opinion. Thomas Jefferson
Ultimately the person, even the child, must choose for himself. Abraham Maslow
The more severe the pain or illness, the more severe will be the necessary changes. These may involve breaking bad habits, or acquiring some new and better ones. Peter McWilliams
It is the habit of mankind to mistake familiarity for accurate knowledge. John Stuart Mill
Humanity has advanced, when it has advanced, not because it has been sober, responsible, and cautious, but because it has been playful, rebellious, and immature Tom Robbins
His opinions are like water in the bottom of a canoe, going from side to side. African Proverb
He is a fool whose sheep runs away twice. African Proverb
Until he has been part of a cause larger than himself, no man is truly whole. Richard Nixon
People do change. Ehud Barak
No man limps because another is hurt. Danish Proverb
He who knows nothing, doubts nothing Spanish Proverb
He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever. Chinese Proverb
He that is rich will not be called a fool. Spanish Proverb
An enemy will agree, but a friend will argue. Russian Proverb
Flattery makes friends and truth makes enemies Spanish Proverb
Our ancestors have bred pugnacity into our bone and marrow, and thousands of years of peace won't breed it out of us. William James
Nonviolence is not a thing that comes easily. You have to learn how to be nonviolent Betty Williams
The gentle and insinuating manners of the female sex tend to soften the roughness of the other sex. Henry Home; Lord Kames
There is something wonderful in seeing a wrong-headed majority assailed by truth John Kenneth Galbraith
I am weird. Bill Clinton
People change when they tell themselves they have to change. People do not change when you tell them they have to change. Thomas Friedman
Our society has lost its taste for complexity and nuance…. We want simple answers …. We have almost disabled our politicians from speaking. John Edward Sexton
If you are a humble person, politics is not for you. Politics is brutal, cruel and vicious and is incompatible with Christianity. Monica Crowley
Commerce has not delivered us out of history’s passions, the World Wide Web has not cast aside blood and kin and faith. Fouad Ajami
Americans see the world as they want it to be rather than the way it is. Aaron David Miller
Your thoughts create your reality. Louise Hay
If you spend most of your effort preventing bad things from happening you will also prevent many good things from happening. Philip L. Weiser
People like to be consulted. William J. Fallon
I have now reigned above fifty years in victory or peace; beloved by my subjects, dreaded by my enemies, and respected by my allies. Riches and honors, power and pleasure, have waited on my call, nor does any earthly blessing appear to have been wanting to my felicity. In this situation, I have diligently numbered the days of pure and genuine happiness which have fallen to my lot: they amount to Fourteen: - O man! place not thy confidence in this present world. Abd-ar Rahman III
Genius is talent exercised with courage Ludwig Wittgenstein
Nothing is so difficult as not deceiving oneself Ludwig Wittgenstein
At the core of all well-founded belief, lies belief that is unfounded Ludwig Wittgenstein
Most of us...are naturally more sanguine and hopeful than logic would justify. We seem to be so constituted that in the absence of any facts to go upon we are happy and self-satisfied; so that the effect of experience is continually to contract our hopes and aspirations Charles S. Peirce
Confidence in the effect of superstitious observances is not peculiar to any age or nation. Few, even of the accomplished Greeks and Romans, were able to shake off this weakness Adam Ferguson; Ferguson of Rath
Men are disturbed, not by things, but by the principles and notions which they form concerning things Epictetus
Every generation lives with illusions. Gordon Wood
In Iran, we don't have homosexuals, like in your country. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Human relationships are at the core of political success. Doris Kearns Goodwin
Genius is one percent inspiration, ninety-nine percent perspiration. Thomas A. Edison
Princes, corrupted by flattery, take everything, that is free and ingenuous, to be harsh and austere. They are become so delicate, that everything, which is not an adulation, offends them. But nothing ought they to be so greatly afraid of, as this very adulation, since there are no miseries, into which they may not be hurried by its poisonous insinuation. On the contrary, the prince is happy, even if he has but a single subject, who is so generous as to speak the truth to him; such a man is the treasure of the state Jean-Jacques Burlamaqui
We cannot see but a small depth into the heart of man, and can only discover the work of his tongue. Good Peter; Agwelondong
We are governed by our hopes and our fears. DeWitt Clinton
It is a sin peculiar to man to hate his victim. Cornelius Tacitus
As a rule, what is out of sight disturbs men’s minds more seriously than what they see. Julius Caesar
Quite often good things have harmful consequences… men have been ruined by their money or killed by their courage. Aristotle
We often despise that which is most useful to us. Aesop
The man who is possessed of wealth, who lolls on his sofa or rolls in his carriage, cannot judge the wants or feelings of the day-laborer. James Madison
Shared danger is the strongest of bonds; it will keep men united in spite of mutual dislike and suspicion. Livy
Once doubt begins it spreads rapidly. John Maynard Keynes
Nobody wants to change. Louis V. Gerstner, Jr.
The individualism of the Arab has been erased from this society. Ibrahim Buleihi
A zealot is a person who, having forgotten his original purpose, redoubles his efforts. Alan K. Simpson
A man's ethnic identity has more to do with a personal awareness than with geography. William Saroyan
It is impossible not to notice that our world is tormented by failure, hate, guilt, and fear. William Saroyan
Intellectuals are cynical and cynics have never built a cathedral.. Henry A. Kissinger
Faith is believing what you know ain’t so. Mark Twain
The evolution of the brain not only overshot the needs of prehistoric man, it is the only example of evolution providing a species with an organ which it does not know how to use. Arthur Koestler
Males do not represent two discrete populations, heterosexual and homosexual. The world is not to be divided into sheep and goats. Not all things are black nor all things white. It is a fundamental of taxonomy that nature rarely deals with discrete categories. Only the human mind invents categories and tries to force facts into separated pigeon-holes. The living world is a continuum in each and every one of its aspects. The sooner we learn this concerning human sexual behavior, the sooner we shall reach a sound understanding of the realities of sex. Alfred Kinsey
The fact is there is nothing that you can trust; and that is a terrible fact, whether you like it or not. Psychologically, there is nothing in the world that you can put your faith, your trust, or your belief in. Neither your gods, nor your science can save you, can bring you psychological certainty; and you have to accept that you can trust in absolutely nothing. That is a scientific fact, as well as a psychological fact. Because, your leaders—religious and political—and your books—sacred and profane—have all failed, and you are still confused, in misery, in conflict. So, that is an absolute, undeniable fact. Jiddu Krishnamurti
We thrive on blaming others, which is a form of self-pity Jiddu Krishnamurti
Human beings are unable to be honest with themselves about themselves. They cannot talk about themselves without embellishing Akira Kurosawa
Beware, as long as you live, of judging people by appearances. Jean de La Fontaine
Everyone believes very easily whatever they fear or desire Jean de La Fontaine
How can we expect others to keep our secrets if we cannot keep them ourselves? Francois de La Rochefoucauld
We promise according to our hopes; we fulfill according to our fears. Francois de La Rochefoucauld
It only takes a day to change someone from an anti-intellectual to an intellectual by persuading him that he might be one! Edwin Land
An essential aspect of creativity is not being afraid to fail Edwin Land
The first inclination which an animal has is to protect itself Zeno of Elia
We should not be upset that others hide the truth from us, when we hide it so often from ourselves Francois de La Rochefoucauld
Man is always partial and is quite right to be. Even impartiality is partial. Georg C. Lichtenberg
I am often of one opinion when I am lying down and of another when I am standing up. Georg C. Lichtenberg
We often do not see what we do not expect to see. Alan Lightman
Under a tyranny, most friends are a liability. One quarter of them turn "reasonable" and become your enemies, one quarter are afraid to speak, and one quarter are killed and you die with them. But the blessed are the final quarter keep you alive. Sinclair Lewis
Under the influence of fear, which always leads men to take a pessimistic view of things, they magnified their enemies’ resources, and minimized their own. Livy
Men are only too clever at shifting blame from their own shoulders to those of others. Livy
All men work more zealously against their enemies than they cooperate with their friends. Julius Caesar
Gratitude looks to the past and love to the present. Fear, avarice, lust, and ambition look ahead. C. S. Lewis
One man can make a difference and every man should try. Jacqueline Kennedy
In general it is a natural characteristic of human nature everywhere, that whenever a man fails in his first contests he becomes disheartened with respect to what is to come. Augustus
Oh, the poor folks hate the rich folks, And the rich folks hate the poor folks. All of my folks hate all of your folks, It's American as apple pie. Tom Lehrer
Greater is our terror of the unknown. Livy
Passion, prejudice, and error, are characteristics of human nature …. . Literary talents may be prostituted, and the powers of genius debased to subserve the purposes of ambition or avarice. Mercy Otis Warren
The depraved nature of man is well known. He has a natural bias toward his own interest, which will prevail ... unless checked. Patrick Henry
I sincerely wish ingratitude was not so natural to the human heart as it is. Alexander Hamilton
The passions of men will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice without constraint. Alexander Hamilton
We must take man as we find him, and if we expect him to serve the public we must interest his passions in doing so. Alexander Hamilton
We suppose mankind more honest than they are. Alexander Hamilton
The men who make revolutions are always despised by those who profit from them. Francois Guizot
You see few people here in America who really care very much about living a Christian life in a democratic world. Clare Boothe Luce
Tis surprising to see how rapidly a panic will sometimes run through a country. All nations and ages have been subject to them Thomas Paine
A man's ethnic identity has more to do with a personal awareness than with geography. William Saroyan
There was a touch of anxiety in the whole human race about its future. William Saroyan
Courage mounteth with occasion William Shakespeare
We may try to see things as objectively as we please. None the less, we can never see them with any eyes except our own. Benjamin N. Cardozo
We respond to the unknown by trying to retreat from it, or trying to comprehend it, or trying to control it. The first approach is evident in longings for return to a simpler "risk-free" life that never was. The second is reflected in the fantasy of synoptic risk assessment: Measure the requisite probabilities and trade-offs, calculate the social risk-benefit function, and the common good will have been defined. The third approach is in the tradition of professional engineering. It serves us well but, as engineers have been among the first to point out, has met its match and more in the complex social problems it increasingly is called upon to address. William C. Clark
The people with the most ridiculous ideas are always the people who are most certain of them Bill Maher
In Turkey, Egypt and the Maghreb, men who are ‘active’ in sexual relations with other men are not considered homosexual; the sexual domination of other men even confers a status of hyper-masculinity. Khalid Duran
There is nothing to fear as much as fear. Henry David Thoreau
Experience tells us that people are not born with the innate ability nor the wish to see the Other as an equal individual in society. Pride in one’s separate identity can be so strong that it obscures the intrinsic value of other identities. Pluralism is a value that must be taught. Aga Khan IV
… cultural pride can turn, too often, into an endeavor to normalize one's culture. The quest for identity can then become an exclusionary process - so that we define ourselves less by what we are FOR and more by whom we are AGAINST. When this happens, diversity turns quickly from a source of beauty to a cause of discord. Aga Khan IV
For too much and too long, we seem to have surrendered community excellence and community values in the mere accumulation of material things Robert Kennedy
Consider your origin; you were not born to live like brutes, but to follow virtue and knowledge. Dante Alighieri
There is no greater sorrow Than to be mindful of the happy time In misery Dante Alighieri
God cracked down a great hammer on the Japanese people. Fakasaku Yasubumi
It is very difficult to get a man to understand something when his tribal identity depends on his not understanding it. Michael Berube
For the progress of the nation, what is needed is discipline. Ferdinand Marcos
Things are never as good or as bad as they seem. Dennis C. Blair
We have a never sated appetite for self deception. Michael Crichton
Vote counting is 90 percent art, 10 percent science, and all about human nature William Paxon
Courage is the capacity to meet the anxiety which arises as one achieves freedom. Rollo May
The tools of conquest do not necessarily come with bombs and explosives and fallout. There are weapons that are simply thoughts, attitudes, prejudices, to be found only in the minds of men. For the record, prejudices can kill, and suspicion can destroy. And a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has a fallout all of its own Rod Serling
Discussion is an exchange of knowledge; argument an exchange of ignorance. Robert Quillen
Among all the diseases of the mind there is not one more epidemical or more pernicious than the love of flattery. Richard Steele
The human race is a race of cowards. I am not only marching with them but am carrying the banner. Mark Twain
The distrust and suspicion which men everywhere evidence toward their adversaries, at all states of historical development, may be regarded as the immediate precursor to the notion of ideology. Karl Manheim
The fallacy of genetic determinism is to suppose that the genes "make' the organism. It is a basic principle of developmental biology that organisms undergo a continuous development from conception to death, a development that is the unique consequence of the interaction of the genes in their cells, the temporal sequence of environments through which the organisms pass, and random cellular processes that determine the life, death, and transformation of cells. As a result, even the fingerprints of identical twins are not identical. Their temperaments, mental processes, abilities, life choices, disease histories, and death certainly differ despite the determined efforts of many parents to enforce as great a similarity as possible. Richard Lewontin
Man is very vain; he likes to feel that he is responsible for all the favorable things that happen, and he is innocent of all the unfavorable happenings R. Buckminster Fuller
The world cannot live at the level of its great men. James G. Frazer
One of the widest gaps in human experience is the gap between what we say we want to be and our willingness to discipline ourselves to get there. Harry Emerson Fosdick
Intellectual brilliance is no guarantee against being dead wrong. David Franklin Fasold
There are three sides to every story: your side, my side, and the truth. Robert Evans
Each community has a curious and distorted image of itself which is always flattering. Carl Henry Eckart
A man who lies to himself, and believes his own lies, becomes unable to recognize truth, either in himself or in anyone else. Fyodor Dostoevsky
It is absurd to suppose, if this is God’s world, that men must always be selfish barbarians. Charles Fletcher Dole
Men's fundamental attitudes toward the world are fixed by the scope and qualities of the activities in which they partake. John Dewey
When men cease to fight — they cease to be — Men Arthur Desmond
To "go to extremes" is ever symptomatic of genius and greatness. Arthur Desmond
The first step towards madness is to think oneself wise. Fernando de Rojas
Once we become wealthy, we tend to move away from what made us wealthy. James Dyson
In an ideological, polarized political environment, people see the reality that they want to see. David Brooks
So long as men are corrupt and revel in sewer filth, entertainers will sell them what they want. Laws may be passed, arrests may be made, lawyers may argue, courts may sentence and jails may harbor men of corrupt minds, but pornography and allied insults to decency will never cease until men have cleansed their minds and cease to require and pay for such vile stuff. Spencer W. Kimball
This gentleman feels that all the members of Congress should have access to all the information which is in the hands of officials in the executive branch who deal with foreign affairs. He states that this is so in England and France. I think the gentleman must be mistaken, for it would be "agin" human nature for so many people to know a secret and keep it! Much of the information which comes to officials dealing with foreign affairs is uncorroborated, but valuable as background material. The sources of this information would soon dry up if it became the property of too many people. It seems to me that in foreign affairs, as in all matters of government, one must deal with reality, recognize human nature as it is and set up machinery to deal with real situations, not those which we wish existed. Eleanor Roosevelt
People frequently say that it is human nature to want to gamble and, therefore, you cannot prevent it. It seems to me there are ways of satisfying this enjoyment in gambling without encouraging widespread crime organizations. Much of what we read about could not possibly go on without the connivance of government officials in cities and states and even at the Federal level. Eleanor Roosevelt
I understand the world solely as a field for cultural competition among the peoples. Georgi Nikolov Delchev; Gotse Delchev
We think in myths; we live in myths David W. Blight
Men of today seem to feel more acutely than ever the paradox of their condition. They know themselves to be the supreme end to which all action should be subordinated, but the exigencies of action force them to treat one another as instruments or obstacles, as means. The more widespread their mastery of the world, the more they find themselves crushed by uncontrollable forces. Simone de Beauvoir
From ignorance our comfort flows. Matthew Prior
Children are like men, the experience of others does not help them. Alphonse Daudet
An untruth must be spoken, where need requires. For whether men lie, or say true, it is with one and the same object. Men lie, because they think to gain by deceiving others; and speak the truth, because they expect to get something by their true speaking, and to be trusted afterwards in more important matters. Thus, though their conduct is so opposite, the end of both is alike. If there were no gain to be got, your true-speaking man would tell untruths as much as your liar, and your liar would tell the truth as much as your true-speaking man. Darius I
Humble people, I've found, don't get very far. Muhammad Ali; Cassius
It is human nature on the part of those who pay graduated taxes to attack all taxes based on the ability to pay. These are the same complainants who for a generation blocked the imposition of a graduated income tax. They are the same complainants who would impose the type of flat sales tax which places the burden of the government more on those least able to pay and less on those most able to pay. Franklin D. Roosevelt
The English are certainly very jealous of foreigners, and so … are the rest of mankind. William Lamb
We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be. Kurt Vonnegut
Man is never perfect, nor contented. Jules Verne
The number one rule of today's marketing – the key secret of those who seek to control your beliefs and habits in order to take your money, your votes, your time or whatever else it is they desire from you – is to always keep in mind that nobody really believes they can be manipulated. Brian W. Vaszily
Man is said to be a reasoning animal. I do not know why he has not been defined as an affective or feeling animal. Perhaps that which differentiates him from other animals is feeling rather than reason Miguel de Unamuno
Our life is a hope which is continually converting itself into memory and memory in its turn begets hope. Miguel de Unamuno
To learn to know oneself, to judge oneself with truth and impartiality, must be the great objects of one's exertion; they are only attainable by constant and cool self-examination. Leopold II
… people are far from acting generally according to the dictates of their interests, but oftener in consequence of their passions, though it may even prove injurious to their interests. Leopold II
Forgiveness is an absolute necessity for continued human existence Desmond Tutu
Human stupidity is international. Kurt Tucholsky
When the days of rejoicing are over,/ When the flags are stowed safely away,/ They will dream of another wild 'War to End Wars'/ And another wild Armistice day. Robert Graves
People will become your enemies if you become eminent too quickly in life, and you will be ineffectual. Rising slowly in the world, people will be your supporters and your happiness will be assured. Yamamoto Tsunetomo
Once there was a certain man who was very clever, but it was his character to always see the negative points of his work. If such is one’s way, one will be useless. Yamamoto Tsunetomo
Grace under pressure. Ernest Hemingway
I don't believe in anti-anything. A man has to have a program; you have to be for something, otherwise you will never get anywhere. Harry S Truman
A society which emphasizes uniformity is one which creates intolerance and hate. Pierre Trudeau
A man's mind will very generally refuse to make itself up until it be driven and compelled by emergency. Anthony Trollope
… the passion for wealth is certainly in some senses new. It grew up very rapidly at the beginning of the present century [19th]; it was not so strong in the last century [18th], when men were much more content to lead a quiet easy life of leisure. The change has really influenced the relations between men; but in the future it is quite possible that the scramble for wealth may grow less intense, and a change in the opposite direction take place. Arnold J. Toynbee
Economists, firstly, regard only one part of man's nature, and treat him simply as a money-making animal; secondly, they disregard the influence of custom, and only take account of competition. Arnold J. Toynbee
The closer people are to the truth, the more tolerant they are of the mistakes of others. Leo Tolstoy
Most men … can seldom discern even the simplest and most obvious truth if it be such as obliges them to admit the falsity of conclusions they have formed, perhaps with much difficulty — conclusions of which they are proud, which they have taught to others, and on which they have built their lives Leo Tolstoy
The strongest of all warriors are these two — Time and Patience. Leo Tolstoy
It was hard to have a conversation with anyone. There were too many people talking.. Yogi Berra
In the United States a man builds a house to spend his latter years in it and he sells it before the roof is on. He plants a garden and lets [rents] it just as the trees are coming into bearing. He brings a field into tillage and leaves other men to gather the crops. He embraces a profession and gives it up. He settles in a place which he soon afterward leaves to carry his changeable longings elsewhere. If his private affairs leave him any leisure he instantly plunges into the vortex of politics and if at the end of a year of unremitting labour he finds he has a few days' vacation, his eager curiosity whirls him over the vast extent of the United States, and he will travel fifteen hundred miles in a few days to shake off his happiness. Alexis de Tocqueville
The strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must Thucydides
Hope--danger's comforter Thucydides
Hope leads men to venture; and no one ever yet put himself in peril without the inward conviction that he would succeed in his design Thucydides
Great good fortune coming suddenly and unexpectedly tends to make a people insolent Thucydides
We know that there can never be any solid friendship between individuals, or union between communities that is worth the name, unless the parties be persuaded of each other’s honesty. Thucydides
The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.. Henry David Thoreau
The wisest man preaches no doctrines. Henry David Thoreau
Superstition would seem to be simply cowardice in regard to the unknown. Theophrastus
I do not fear Satan half so much as I fear those who do fear him. Teresa of Avila
Obsequiousness begets friends, truth hatred. Publius Terentius Afer
Much of the research into humans' risk-avoidance machinery shows that it is antiquated and unfit for the modern world; it is made to counter repeatable attacks and learn from specifics. If someone narrowly escapes being eaten by a tiger in a certain cave, then he learns to avoid that cave. Nassim Nicholas Taleb
We favor the visible, the embedded, the personal, the narrated, and the tangible; we scorn the abstract. Nassim Nicholas Taleb
The fool generalizes the particular; the nerd particularizes the general; ... the wise does neither. Nassim Nicholas Taleb
The sucker’s trap is when you focus on what you know and what others don’t know, rather than the reverse. Nassim Nicholas Taleb
The Bulk of mankind is as well equipped for flying as thinking. Jonathan Swift
There are few, very few, that will own themselves in a mistake, though all the World sees them to be in downright nonsense. Jonathan Swift
If you allow young folk to be abominably brought up and their characters corrupted little by little, from childhood; and if then you punish them as grown-ups for committing the crimes to which their training has consistently inclined them, what else is this, I ask, but first making thieves and then punishing them for it? Thomas More
…mortals cannot cherish what is private without injury to the community…to the extent that we call anything our own it absorbs our affections and diverts them from the service of the common good. Thomas More
Everyone is a prisoner of his own experiences. No one can eliminate prejudices -- just recognize them. Edward R. Murrow
The Social Sciences will concern themselves with the rationalization of social control... the control of human behavior. Charles Max Mason
Nothing is as easy to make as a promise this winter to do something next summer. Sydney J. Harris
Almost all our misfortunes in life come from the wrong notions we have about the things that happen to us. Stendhal; Marie-Henri
People who have been made to suffer by certain things cannot be reminded of them without a horror which paralyses every other pleasure Stendhal; Marie-Henri
The American people are willing to listen to anyone who has attained prominence. The main fact is that we've heard a man's name a great many times; that makes us ready to accept whatever he says. Charles Proteus Steinmetz
It has always seemed strange to me. The things we admire in men, kindness and generosity, openness, honesty, understanding and feeling are the concomitants of failure in our system. And those traits we detest, sharpness, greed, acquisitiveness, meanness, egotism and self-interest are the traits of success. John Steinbeck
We value virtue but do not discuss it. The honest bookkeeper, the faithful wife, the earnest scholar get little of our attention compared to the embezzler, the tramp, the cheat. John Steinbeck
No one wants advice, only corroboration.. John Steinbeck
No one knows how greatness comes to a man. It may lie in his blackness, sleeping, or it may lance into him like those driven fiery particles from outer space. These things, however, are known about greatness: need gives it life and puts it in action; it never comes without pain; it leaves a man changed, chastened, and exalted at the same time--he can never return to simplicity... John Steinbeck
A creator is not in advance of his generation but he is the first of his contemporaries to be conscious of what is happening to his generation. Gertrude Stein
The universal aptitude for ineptitude makes any human accomplishment an incredible miracle. John Paul Stapp
When a man makes his personal interests the mainspring of his life and he is greedy to make use of everything that can benefit him, he naturally enters into conflict with other persons, acting also in their own interests, hence the disagreements that can become a hundred years old, and drive whole generations to a mutual hate.. Afrikan Aleksandrovich Spir
I have labored carefully, not to mock, lament, or execrate, but to understand human actions Baruch Spinoza
Everyone wishes to catch popular applause for himself, and readily represses the fame of others. Baruch Spinoza
Men will find that they can prepare with mutual aid far more easily what they need, and avoid far more easily the perils which beset them on all sides, by united force. Baruch Spinoza
Hatred is increased by being reciprocated, and can on the other hand be destroyed by love. Baruch Spinoza
Superstition, then, is engendered, preserved, and fostered by fear. Baruch Spinoza
… no one can have lived in the world without observing that most people, when in prosperity, are so over-brimming with wisdom (however inexperienced they may be), that they take every offer of advice as a personal insult, whereas in adversity they know not where to turn, but beg and pray for counsel from every passer-by. Baruch Spinoza
... anyone who seeks for the true causes of miracles, and strives to understand natural phenomena as an intelligent being, and not to gaze at them like a fool, is set down and denounced as an impious heretic by those, whom the masses adore as the interpreters of nature and the gods. Such persons know that, with the removal of ignorance, the wonder which forms their only available means for proving and preserving their authority would vanish also. Baruch Spinoza
The Republican form of government is the highest form of government; but because of this it requires the highest type of human nature — a type nowhere at present existing Herbert Spencer
Those who cavalierly reject the Theory of Evolution, as not adequately supported by facts, seem quite to forget that their own theory is supported by no facts at all. Like the majority of men who are born to a given belief, they demand the most rigorous proof of any adverse belief, but assume that their own needs none. Herbert Spencer
Prejudice locks the mind. Nothing can enter. Nothing true can escape. Gerry Spence
It is more profitable to be mindful of our own faults than of those of our age. John Lancaster Spalding
When we have not the strength or the courage to grasp a new truth, we persuade ourselves that it is not a truth at all. John Lancaster Spalding
The common man is impelled and controlled by interests; the superior, by ideas. John Lancaster Spalding
It's appropriate for people to pursue their profit motive in business. If you want to change that, you're going against human nature. But when it comes to setting the rules or creating the institutions, then you should have the general interest at heart. George Soros
When I have tried and failed, I shall have failed. Sophocles
Nobody likes the man who brings bad news. Sophocles
I believe that courage is morally neutral. I can well imagine wicked people being brave and good people being timid or afraid. I don't consider it a moral virtue. Susan Sontag
In order to do any thing in this world worth doing, we must not stand shivering on the bank thinking of the cold and the danger, but jump in and scramble through as well as we can. Sydney Smith
It is a very wise rule … to acquire early a correct notion of your own peculiar constitution of mind, and to become well acquainted with … your idiosyncrasy Sydney Smith
We in America – and men across the earth – have trapped ourselves with that word equality, which is inapplicable to the genus man. I wish we would forget it. Stop its use in our country: Let the communists have it. It isn’t fit for men who fling their dreams across the skies. It is fit only for a leveling down of mankind. Lillian Smith
No man lives without fault. Joseph Smith, Jr.
Politically, economically and philosophically the motive of self-interest not only is but must...and ought to be the mainspring of human conduct... Frederick Elwin Smith Birkenhead
The most frivolous disaster which could befall himself would occasion a more real disturbance. If he was to lose his little finger to-morrow, he would not sleep to-night; but, provided he never saw them, he will snore with the most profound security over the ruin of a hundred millions of his brethren, and the destruction of that immense multitude seems plainly an object less interesting to him, than this paltry misfortune of his own. Adam Smith
The founders did not trust human beings, and that is what the Constitution is about. David Keene
In relations with others, one should express resentment and anger openly and straightforwardly. If one cannot express them openly and straightforwardly, the only thing to do is forget about them. To harbor grievances in one's heart, awaiting some later opportunity to give vent to them, is to act like a weak and petty man-in truth, it can only be called cowardice. Yoshida Shoin
Chastity is a monkish and evangelical superstition, a greater foe to natural temperance even than unintellectual sensuality; it strikes at the root of all domestic happiness, and consigns more than half the human race to misery. Percy Bysshe Shelley
It is by no means surprising that prejudices and resentments, which for years were so assiduously cultivated and so violently inflamed, should not have been turned into affection by a defeat; nor are they likely to disappear as long as the southern people continue to brood over their losses and misfortunes. They will gradually subside when those who entertain them cut resolutely loose from the past and embark in a career of new activity on a common field with those whom they have so long considered their enemies. Carl Schurz
True courage is being afraid, and going ahead and doing your job. Norman Schwarzkopf
People are often reproached because their desires are directed mainly to money and they are fonder of it than of anything else. Yet it is natural and even inevitable …. every other blessing can satisfy only one desire and one need; for instance, food is good only to the hungry, wine only for the healthy, medicine for the sick, a fur coat for winter, women for youth, and so on... Money alone is the absolutely good thing because it meets not merely one need in concreto, but needs generally in abstracto. Arthur Schopenhauer
For the purpose of acquiring gain, everything else is pushed aside or thrown overboard, for example, as is philosophy by the professors of philosophy. Arthur Schopenhauer
It is difficult, if not impossible, to define the limit of our reasonable desires in respect of possessions. Arthur Schopenhauer
For our improvement we need a mirror. Arthur Schopenhauer
A reproach can only hurt if it hits the mark. Whoever knows that he does not deserve a reproach can treat it with contempt. Arthur Schopenhauer
Intellect is invisible to the man who has none. Arthur Schopenhauer
Pride is an established conviction of one’s own paramount worth in some particular respect, while vanity is the desire of rousing such a conviction in others, and it is generally accompanied by the secret hope of ultimately coming to the same conviction oneself. Pride works from within; it is the direct appreciation of oneself. Vanity is the desire to arrive at this appreciation indirectly, from without. Arthur Schopenhauer
Every true thinker for himself is so far like a monarch; he is absolute, and recognizes nobody above him. His judgments, like the decrees of a monarch, spring from his own sovereign power and proceed directly from himself. He takes as little notice of authority as a monarch does of a command; nothing is valid unless he has himself authorized it. On the other hand, those of vulgar minds, who are swayed by all kinds of current opinions, authorities, and prejudices, are like the people which in silence obey the law and commands. Arthur Schopenhauer
We forfeit three-fourths of ourselves in order to be like other people. Arthur Schopenhauer
More people are killed every year by pigs than by sharks, which shows you how good we are at evaluating risk. Bruce Schneier
One of the worst things in the world is to be the victim of a process over which you have no control. Sergio Marchionne
Have the courage to have your wisdom regarded as stupidity Antonin Scalia
Nothing hath an uglier Look to us than Reason, when it is not of our side. George Savile
Some men are born committed to action: they do not have a choice, they have been thrown on a path, at the end of that path, an act awaits them, their act. Jean-Paul Sartre
Man cannot will unless he has first understood that he must count on no one but himself; that he is alone. Jean-Paul Sartre
Human nature is, by definition, a talkative one, imprudent, indiscreet, gossipy, incapable of closing its mouth and keeping it closed. Jose Saramago
Creating is always so much more stimulating than destroying. Jose Saramago
It's really a pity that there are observers who view political events like comic strips. There has to be a Zorro, there has to be a star. No, the problem of Upper Volta is more serious than that. It was a grave mistake to have looked for a man, a star, at all costs, to the point of creating one, that is, to the point of attributing the ownership of the event to captain Sankara, who must have been the brains, etc. Thomas Sankara
The Republic is a dream. Nothing happens unless first a dream. Carl Sandburg
There are some people who can receive a truth by no other way than to have their understanding shocked and insulted. Carl Sandburg
I am well aware that there is such a great craving in man for heroism and the heroic, and that hero worship forms not a small motif in his complex. I am also aware that, unless man believes in his own heroism and the heroism of others, he cannot achieve much or great things. We must, however, take proper care that we do not make a fetish of this cult of hero-worship, for then we will turn ourselves into votaries of false gods and prophets. Aung San
There are three stages of truth. First is that it can't be true, and that's what they said. “You couldn't immunize against polio with a killed-virus vaccine.” Second phase: they say, "Well, if it's true, it's not very important. And the third stage is, 'Well, we've known it all along. Jonas Salk
Whenever a massacre of Armenians is reported from Asia Minor, everyone assumes that it has been carried out "under orders" from somewhere or another; no one seems to think that there are people who might like to kill their neighbors now and then. Hector Hugh Munro
If you want to be immortal, do something useful in your lifetime. Craig Venter
A friendship that can be ended / didn't ever start Mellin de Saint-Gelais
There are good people on both sides of almost every issue. Scott Brown
Knowledge and wisdom, far from being one, Have ofttimes no connection. Knowledge dwells In heads replete with thoughts of other men, Wisdom in minds attentive to their own. Knowledge is proud that he has learned so much, Wisdom is humble that he knows no more. William Cowper
There is no shame in admitting that the ultimate principle of all the wonders of the universe is unknown to us. Francesco Marla Pompeo Colonna
The wise are instructed by reason; ordinary minds by experience; the stupid, by necessity; and brutes by instinct. Marcus Tullius Cicero
The human mind has no frontiers, it extends proportionately as the universe displays itself; man, then, can and must attempt all, and he needs only time in order to know all Georges-Louis Leclerc de Buffon
The habit of an opinion often leads to the complete conviction of its truth, it hides the weaker parts of it, and makes us incapable of accepting the proofs against it. Jons Jacob Berzelius
Of course, Behaviorism 'works'. So does torture. Give me a no-nonsense, down-to-earth behaviorist, a few drugs, and simple electrical appliances, and in six months I will have him reciting the Athanasian Creed in public. W. H. Auden
The balance between the cooperative and altruistic tendencies and those which are disoperative and egoistic is relatively close. Under many conditions the cooperative forces lose, In the long run, however, the group centered, more altruistic drives are slightly stronger. ... human altruistic drives are as firmly based on an animal ancestry as is man himself. Warder Clyde Allee
Another source of fallacy is the vicious circle of illusions which consists on the one hand of believing what we see, and on the other in seeing what we believe. Thomas Clifford Allbutt
Every man is his own greatest dupe. William R. Alger
Ignorance is less remote from the truth than prejudice. Denis Diderot
There may be one fault in a man that conceals a thousand qualities, or one excellence that conceals a thousand faults. The little indicates much. Shams Tabrizi
We are all imperfect. We cannot expect perfect government. William Howard Taft
Any 6 year old’s hindsight is better than a President’s foresight. Harry S Truman
We're going to the moon because it's in the nature of the human being to face challenges.... we're required to do these things just as salmon swim upstream. Neil Armstrong
The condition of our survival in any but the meagerest existence is our willingness to accommodate ourselves to the conflicting interests of others, to learn to live in a social world. Learned Hand
We may pretend that we're basically moral people who make mistakes, but the whole of history proves otherwise. Terry Hands
When people feel they’re heard and understood, they’ll listen. Frank Luntz
The mistakes you made you tend to conveniently forget Kenneth D. Taylor
He chose to be rich by making his wants few, and supplying them himself. Ralph Waldo Emerson
I found everywhere now the most direct antagonism between the two classes. The whites charge generally that the negro is idle, and at the bottom of all local disturbances, and credit him with most of the vices and very few of the virtues of humanity. The negroes charge that the whites are revengeful, and intend to cheat the laboring class at every opportunity, and credit them with neither good purposes nor kindly hearts.. Sidney Andrews
Self interest is a masterful agent in modern civilization. Sidney Andrews
Nothing is too absurd to be believed of human prejudice. James Parton
Some people say torture doesn’t work. I do not know whether it does or not. … The reality is the effect it has on you. When you become the torturer, something happens to that force … it has a corrosive effect over time. You move down a path that is difficult to come back from. Stanley A. McChrystal
Unfortunately for Burma, she has had to live under the constant threat of war ever since her re-emergence as an independent state. Without assigning blame or sitting in judgment, she has come to deplore the existence of military blocs because she firmly believes that the formation and growth of such blocs only add further to the tensions already existing in the world. Furthermore, she has enough faith in human nature to believe that in a choice between mutual extinction and some form of mutual accommodation or coexistence, man will finally come to choose the latter. James Barrington
Where a bad custom has been in existence for any length of time, most people grow to regard it as part of the order of nature. Theodore Roosevelt
That which lies before the human race is a constant struggle to maintain and improve Thomas Huxley
Hemingway has expressed with genius the terrors of the modern man at the danger of losing control of his world Edmund Wilson
Our permanent enemy is the noted bellicosity of human nature.... The plain truth is that people want war.... It is a sacrament. Society would rot, they think, without the mystical blood-payment. William James
As human nature is very much the same in Congress as in a stock exchange, a church convention, or a newspaper office, the President who deals with Congress tactfully and courteously will, in the long run get more of what he wants than the President who does not do so. He may not get so much credit for what he does gain, from those people who like to see a President fight Congress, especially in that flattering way which consists in appealing to them to make Congress do what the President wants done. Henry B.F. Macfarland
Thinking too little about things or thinking too much both make us obstinate and fanatical. Blaise Pascal
Nothing is surer than that the people will be weak. Blaise Pascal
The innovator, however, must in the first place be discontented, he must doubt the value of what he is doing or question the accepted ways of doing it. And secondly, he must be prepared to take fresh paths, to venture into fields where he is by no means expert. This is true, at least, of major forms of innovation; they make it possible for other men to be expert, but are not themselves forms of expertise John Passmore
...only mastery and sovereignty bring glory, and only slavery brings shame. Blaise Pascal
Custom is our nature … Blaise Pascal
Man loves malice, but not against one-eyed men nor the unfortunate, but against the fortunate and proud. Blaise Pascal
People almost invariably arrive at their beliefs not on the basis of proof but on the basis of what they find attractive. Blaise Pascal
The people are not satisfied with any form of government, or statute law, until it comes up to their sense of justice; so every progressive State revises its statutes from time to time, and at each revision comes nearer to the absolute right which human nature demands. Theodore Parker
At the bottom of the Wealth curve Men and Women starve and children die young. In the broad middle of the curve all is turmoil and motion: people rising and falling, climbing by talent or luck and falling by alcoholism, tuberculosis and other kinds of unfitness. At the very top sit the elite of the elite, who control wealth and power for a time – until they are unseated through revolution or upheaval by a new aristocratic class. There is no progress in human history. Democracy is a fraud. Human nature is primitive, emotional, unyielding. The smarter, abler, stronger, and shrewder take the lion's share. The weak starve, lest society become degenerate: Vilfredo Pareto
It is ironic that people of modest means sometimes become conservative out of a scarcity fear bred by the very capitalist system they support. Michael Parenti
Some people get a feeling of power from being unpleasant. Alexei Panshin
What is cowardice in the young is wisdom in the old, but all the same one can be ashamed of wisdom.” Graham Greene
Whereas the Bedouin who survey 100 miles of empty sand and crave company and can psychologically afford to offer each stranger a warm welcome, his urban contemporaries, at heart no less well-meaning or generous, must in order to preserve a modicum of balance, live without any acknowledgement of the millions of human beings sleeping arguing. Copulating, and dying only inches away. Modern society does not help us to put forward our more dignified side. Alain de Botton
The current public aspiration seems to be: Get what you can. Can what you get. Sit on the can behind gated fences. Patricia Schroeder
A man with a conviction is a hard man to change. Chris Mooney (journalist)
The 21st century does not like tidy minds. Martin Sorrell
Trust comes from transparency… Harry Reid
Heroes don't get anything but dead. Laurell K. Hamilton
There is no fundamental difference between man and the higher animals in their mental faculties. Charles Darwin
A mature person is one who does not think only in absolutes, who is able to be objective even when deeply stirred emotionally, who has learned that there is both good and bad in all people and all things, and who walks humbly and deals charitably with the circumstances of life, knowing that in this world no one is all-knowing and therefore all of us need both love and charity. Eleanor Roosevelt
At a child's birth, if a mother could ask a fairy godmother to endow it with the most useful gift, that gift would be curiosity. Eleanor Roosevelt
My greatest fear has always been that I would be afraid - afraid physically or mentally or morally and allow myself to be influenced by fear instead of by my honest convictions. Eleanor Roosevelt
The encouraging thing is that every time you meet a situation, though you may think at the time it is an impossibility and you go through the tortures of the damned, once you have met it and lived through it you find that forever after you are freer than you ever were before. If you can live through that you can live through anything. You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, `I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.' The danger lies in refusing to face the fear, in not daring to come to grips with it. If you fail anywhere along the line, it will take away your confidence. You must make yourself succeed every time. You must do the thing you think you cannot do. Eleanor Roosevelt
Surely, in the light of history, it is more intelligent to hope rather than to fear, to try rather than not to try. For one thing we know beyond all doubt: Nothing has ever been achieved by the person who says, `It can't be done.' Eleanor Roosevelt
Courage is more exhilarating than fear and in the long run it is easier. We do not have to become heroes overnight. Just a step at a time, meeting each thing that comes up, seeing it is not as dreadful as it appeared, discovering we have the strength to stare it down. Eleanor Roosevelt
How unfortunate and how narrowing a thing it is for a man to have wealth who makes a god of it instead of a servant. Mark Twain
That desire which is in us all to better other people's condition by having them think as we think. Mark Twain
The lottery is a government institution & the poor its best patrons. Mark Twain
But men's hearts are so made that the sight of one voluntary victim for a noble idea stirs them more deeply than the sight of a crowd submitting to a dire fate they cannot escape. Mark Twain
The fact is the human race is not only slow about borrowing valuable ideas--it sometimes persists in not borrowing them at all. Mark Twain
Nature knows no indecencies; man invents them. Mark Twain
Our heroes are the men who do things which we recognize with regret and sometimes with a secret shame that we cannot do. We find not much in ourselves to admire, we are always privately wanting to be like somebody else. If everybody was satisfied with himself there would be no heroes. Mark Twain
Thousands of geniuses live and die undiscovered--either by themselves or by others. Mark Twain
The government is not best which secures mere life and property -- there is a more valuable thing -- manhood. Mark Twain
That's the difference between governments and individuals. Governments don't care, individuals do. Mark Twain
If we would learn what the human race really is at bottom, we need only observe it in election times. Mark Twain
Human beings feel dishonor the most, sometimes, when they most deserve it. Mark Twain
It is curious--curious that physical courage should be so common in the world, and moral courage so rare. Mark Twain
Conformity--the natural instinct to passively yield to that vague something recognized as authority. Mark Twain
The only very marked difference between the average civilized man and the average savage is that the one is gilded and the other is painted. Mark Twain
Civilization largely consists in hiding human nature. When the barbarian learns to hide it we account him enlightened. Mark Twain
In all the ages, three-fourths of the support of the great charities has been conscience money. Mark Twain
We are chameleons, and our partialities and prejudices change places with an easy and blessed facility, and we are soon wonted to the change and happy in it. Mark Twain
Fear is a tyrant and a despot, more terrible than the rack, more potent than the stake. Richard Horatio Edgar Wallace
Time is the great physician. Benjamin Disraeli
Nurture your mind with great thoughts. To believe in the heroic makes heroes. Benjamin Disraeli
Few people can resist doing what is universally expected of them. This invisible pressure is more difficult to stand against than individual tyranny. Charles Dudley Warner
The more things a man is ashamed of, the more respectable he is. George Bernard Shaw
Have you ever seen a man carry a burden when there were a woman's shoulders near enough to shift the burden to? Myrtle Reed
Half the trouble in life is caused by pretending there isn't any. Edith Wharton
Circumstantial evidence is a very tricky thing. It may seem to point very straight to one thing, but if you shift your own point of view a little, you may find it pointing in an equally uncompromising manner to something entirely different. Arthur Conan Doyle
You shall judge of a man by his foes as well as by his friends Joseph Conrad
Guilt hath very quick ears to an accusation. Henry Fielding
Sometimes people carry to such perfection the mask they have assumed that in due course they actually become the person they seem. W. Somerset Maugham
… a resolution to avoid an evil is seldom framed till the evil is so far advanced as to make avoidance impossible. Thomas Hardy
The best men are not consistent in good--why should the worst men be consistent in evil? Wilkie Collins
Ignorance is the parent of fear. Herman Melville
… there are times of moral danger when the hardest virtuous resolution to form is flight, and when the most heroic bravery is flight. Charles Dickens
… like most men with but little courage, he sought at once to justify himself by bullying. John Galsworthy
it is stupidity rather than courage to refuse to recognize danger when it is close upon you. Arthur Conan Doyle
Our civilization is still in a middle stage, scarcely beast in that it is no longer wholly guided by instinct; scarcely human, in that it is not yet wholly guided by reason. Theodore Dreiser
The test of a man or woman's breeding is how they behave in a quarrel. Anybody can behave well when things are going smoothly. George Bernard Shaw
Considering how much we are all given to discuss the characters of others, and discuss them often not in the strictest spirit of charity, it is singular how little we are inclined to think that others can speak ill-naturedly of us, and how angry and hurt we are when proof reaches us that they have done so. Anthony Trollope
World events are the work of individuals whose motives are often frivolous, even casual. Gore Vidal
The four most beautiful words in our common language: I told you so Gore Vidal
I've been around the ruling class all my life, and I've been quite aware of their total contempt for the people of the country Gore Vidal
I'm not a conspiracy theorist, I'm a conspiracy analyst. Gore Vidal
Human nature being what it is, peace must inevitably be a relative condition. The essence of life is struggle and competition, and to that extent perfect peace is an almost meaningless abstraction. Struggle and competition are stimulating, but when they degenerate into conflict it is usually both destructive and disruptive. Javier Perez de Cuellar
Republicans ... are conservatives who think it would be best if we faced the fact that people are no damned good. They think that if we admit that we have selfish, acquisitive natures and then set out to get all we can for ourselves by working hard for it, that things will be better for everyone. They are not insensitive to the poor, but tend to think the poor are impoverished because they won’t work. They think there would be fewer of them to feel sorry for if the government did not encourage the proliferation of the least fit among us with welfare programs. Andy Rooney
Ambition is an uncomfortable companion many times. He creates a discontent with present surroundings and achievements; he is never satisfied but always pressing forward to better things in the future. Restless, energetic, purposeful, it is ambition that makes of the creature a real man. Lyndon B. Johnson
… ambition is not a vice but in a vicious mind: in a virtuous mind it is a virtue, and will be found to take its color from the character in which it is mixed. Ambition is a desire of superiority; and a man may become superior, either by making others less or himself greater. Fulke Greville
Ambition … is the most incurable and inflexible of all human passions. David Hume
What makes a fool is an inability to take even his own good advice. William Faulkner
Good advice is rarer than rubies. Salman Rushdie
Here is a thing which the more it is needed the more it is rejected: and this is advice, which is unwillingly heeded by those who most need it, that is to say, by the ignorant. Leonardo da Vinci
Men are not gentle, friendly creatures wishing for love, who simply defend themselves if they are attacked, but ... a powerful measure of desire for aggression had to be reckoned as part of their instinctual endowment. Sigmund Freud
Aggression is part of the masculine design, we are hardwired for it.... Little girls do not invent games where large numbers of people die, where bloodshed is a prerequisite for having fun. Hockey, for example, was not a feminine creation. Nor was boxing. A boy wants to attack something -- and so does a man, even if it's only a little white ball on a tee. John Eldredge
A society that presumes a norm of violence and celebrates aggression, whether in the subway, on the football field, or in the conduct of its business, cannot help making celebrities of the people who would destroy it. Lewis H. Lapham
Memory is often less about truth than about what we want it to be. David Halberstam
Never doubt what small men will do for great power. Paolo Bacigalupi
We have a stake in one another ... what binds us together is greater than what drives us apart Barack Obama
Men quickly find a theory that adapts itself to their desires. Lewis F. Korns
One who accepts the general ideas of his time gets along smoothest, but he does least for progress. Lewis F. Korns
The fault that a man does not realize he has. Is usually an extreme one Lewis F. Korns
God made you and me, in certain respects, quite unequal, and it would be futile to try any interference with His arrangements. Rex Stout
No one has yet been found resolute enough in dogmatizing to deny that Nature made man equal; that society has destroyed this equality is a truth not more incontrovertible. Percy Bysshe Shelley
How can there be so vast a difference of opinion in an age so intelligent and educated as ours? Is half the world struck blind to-day, and is sight given to the other half alone? No, there is neither incurable blindness, nor is sight vouchsafed only to a few. The sole reason for the confusion is that men employ different standards in measuring the same thing, and for this reason find it impossible to understand each other. Guglielmo Ferrero
We have invented the whole machinery of the supernatural, with its unseen spirits and powers good and bad, to account for things, because we found the universal everyday nature too cheap, too common, too vulgar. We have had to cap the natural with the supernatural to satisfy our love for the marvelous and the inexplicable. John Burroughs
Generosity is stronger and wiser than cruelty and indifference… The real secret of life is good will. Shimon Peres
War not only teaches what man can be, but it teaches also what he must not be. Oliver Wendell Holmes
What a stupendous, what an incomprehensible machine is man,--who can endure toil, famine, stripes, imprisonment, and death itself, in vindication of his own liberty, and, in the next moment, be deaf to all those motives whose power supported him through his trial, and inflict on his fellow-men a bondage one hour of which is fraught with more misery than ages of that which he rose in rebellion to oppose! Thomas Jefferson
Jove fixed it certain, that whatever day makes man a slave takes half his worth away. Homer
It is normal to hate what we fear, and it happens frequently, though not always, that we fear what we hate. I think it may be taken as the rule among primitive men, that they both fear and hate whatever is unfamiliar. Bertrand Russell
The fundamental cause of … trouble is that in the modern world, the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand; 3rd Earl of Kingston
Every man, wherever he goes, is encompassed by a cloud of comforting convictions, which move with him like flies on a summer day. Bertrand Russell
The only people who see the whole picture are the ones who step outside the frame. Salman Rushdie
I do not envy people who think they have a complete explanation of the world, for the simple reason that they are obviously wrong. Salman Rushdie
The hostility of society toward homosexuality is only a special case of its general hostility toward the adolescent spirit. In order to undermine the creative efforts of individuals to shape their lives by their own standards of human understanding and morality, society identifies their deviancy in terms of its inadequacies and failures, thereby undermining their access to basic social acceptance in adaptive areas. Paul Rosenfels
There is at least as much need to curb the cruel greed and arrogance of part of the world of capital, to curb the cruel greed and violence of part of the world of labor, as to check a cruel and unhealthy militarism in international relationships. Theodore Roosevelt
If you treat people right they will treat you right — ninety percent of the time. Franklin D. Roosevelt
Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough. Franklin D. Roosevelt
Will people ever be wise enough to refuse to follow bad leaders …? Eleanor Roosevelt
War and unrest appeal to me more than good bourgeois order. Brutality is respected, the people need wholesome fear. They want to fear someone. They want someone to frighten them and make them shudderingly submissive. Ernst Rohm
It is a useless life that is not consecrated to a great ideal. Jose Rizal
Genius has no country. It blossoms everywhere. Genius is like the light, the air. It is the heritage of all. Jose Rizal
We tell only part of a man's qualities in his presence, and all of them when he is not present. Shlomo ben Yitzchak; Rashi
It's hubris to think that the way we see things is everything there is. Lisa Randall
Do not forget that others won’t see the problems the way you look at or vice versa. Elia M. Ramollah
Throughout the centuries there were men who took first steps down new roads armed with nothing but their own vision. Their goals differed, but they all had this in common: that the step was first, the road new, the vision unborrowed, and the response they received--hatred. The great creators--the thinkers, the artists, the scientists, the inventors--stood alone against the men of their time. Every great new thought was opposed. Ayn Rand
All histories do shew, and wise politicians do hold it necessary that, for the well-governing of every Commonweal, it behoveth man to presuppose that all men are evil, and will declare themselves so to be when occasion is offered. Walter Raleigh
So much is a man worth as he esteems himself. Francois Rabelais
The force of character is cumulative. Ralph Waldo Emerson
Men's fundamental attitudes toward the world are fixed by the scope and qualities of the activities in which they partake. John Dewey
My skepticism warns me of the danger of becoming a fanatic, a danger which no faith has yet averted. Karlheinz Deschner
Most people are not intellectuals — a fact that intellectuals have terrible trouble coming to terms with. John Derbyshire
No man can tell what the future may bring forth Demosthenes
Men have fashioned an image of Chance as an excuse for their own stupidity. For Chance rarely conflicts with intelligence, and most things in life can be set in order by an intelligent sharpsightedness. Democritus
I understand the world solely as a field for cultural competition among the peoples. Georgi Nikolov Delchev
I am not myself, I am the result of all my ancestors. Santiago Martinez Delgado
'Tis very strange Men should be so fond of being thought wickeder than they are. Daniel Defoe
Men do not change; they unmask themselves. Madame de Stael-Holstein; Anne Louise Germaine
Those who love to be feared fear to be loved, and they themselves are more afraid than anyone, for whereas other men fear only them, they fear everyone. Saint Francis de Sales
… what our national experience has made plain is this, that to remain in a continually exalted moral condition is not human nature. That has happened which was prophesied: we have gone down hill from the Revolution until now; we are absorbed in "mere money-getting. Voltairine de Cleyre
Nine hundred and ninety nine women out of a thousand are more interested in the cut of a dress than in the independence of their sex; nine hundred and ninety nine men out of a thousand are more interested in drinking a glass of beer than in questioning the tax that is laid on it; Voltairine de Cleyre
The love of material ease has been, in the mass of men and permanently speaking, always greater than the love of liberty. Voltairine de Cleyre
Once a man has begun to accumulate money, it is unnatural to stop. He actually gets in a state where he wants more and more.. Clarence Day
We've reached a truly remarkable situation: a grotesque mismatch between the American intelligencia and the American electorate. Richard Dawkins
We need not think alike to love alike. Ferenc David
Every instinct that is found in any man is in all men. Clarence Darrow
There are two things that kill a genius — a fatal disease and contentment. Clarence Darrow
I believe people are wonderful. The vast majority of people have never hurt anybody in their lives. Mairead Corrigan Maguire
People usually tend to believe grim words rather than positive ones. Shimon Peres
Human beings are members of a whole, In creation of one essence and soul. If one member is afflicted with pain, Other members uneasy will remain. If you have no sympathy for human pain, The name of human you cannot retain. Saadi
I would like somebody to be hated more than I am. Dionysius the Elder
We try to make virtues out of the faults we have no wish to correct. Francois de La Rochefoucauld
There are few people who are more often wrong than those who cannot suffer being wrong. Francois de La Rochefoucauld
Only great men have great faults. Only great men have great faults. Francois de La Rochefoucauld
It is easier to seem worthy of positions one does not have than of those one does. Francois de La Rochefoucauld
Nothing is given so profusely as advice. Francois de La Rochefoucauld
Self-interest speaks all sorts of tongues and plays all sorts of characters, even that of disinterestedness. Francois de La Rochefoucauld
Know thyself. Thales
It is better to have one friend [or ally] of great value than many who were good for nothing. Anarcharsis
It is useless to tear our hair out when we are in grief, since sorrow is not cured by baldness Bion of Borysthenes
He has not acquired a fortune; the fortune has acquired him. Bion of Borysthenes
The fact that civilization is becoming more intricate must not mean that we treat men for a longer period as immature. Does it not mean, perhaps, the opposite: that we must skillfully make them mature sooner, that we must find ways of handling the intricacy of our culture? Edwin Land
One enlarges his circle of friends through contact with many people. One who limits those contacts narrows the circle and frequently his own point of view as well. Eleanor Roosevelt
The true way to be deceived is to think oneself more knowing than others. Francois de La Rochefoucauld
Character is the result of two great forces: the initial force which the Creator gave it when He called the man into being; and the force of all the external influence and culture that mold and modify the development of a life. James A. Garfield
Ambition has but one reward for all: A little power, a little transient fame, A grave to rest in, and a fading name! William Winter
It is of little traits that the greatest human character is composed. William Winter
A sense of duty pursues us ever. It is omnipresent, like the Diety. Daniel Webster
Genius does not herd with genius. Oliver Wendell Holmes
How many people live on the reputation of the reputation they might have made!. Oliver Wendell Holmes
Genius is always impatient of its harness; its wild blood makes it hard to train. Oliver Wendell Holmes
Tradition wears a snowy beard. John Greenleaf Whittier
The risk taking profile is very different for a woman than that of a man. Christine Lagarde
Most people resign their own sentiments and passions to those of their rulers David Hume
Nothing is more useless than complaining over errors that can no longer be rectified, nothing more vain than regret. Ludwig von Mises
A very prosperous people, flushed with great victories and successes, are seldom so pious, so humble, so just, or so provident, as to perpetuate their happiness. Francis Atterbury
Between the period of national honor and complete degeneracy there is usually an interval of national vanity, during which examples of virtue are recounted and admired without being imitated. The Romans were never more proud of their ancestors than when they ceased to resemble them. From being the freest and most high-spirited people in the world, they suddenly fell into the tamest and most abject submission. Robert Hall (minister)
Although men are accused of not knowing their weakness, yet perhaps as few know their strength. Jonathan Swift
Women to govern men, slaves freemen, are much in the same degree; all being total violations and perversions of the laws of nature and nations. Francis Bacon
Ability to discern that what is true is true, and that what is false is false, is the characteristic of intelligence. Emanuel Swedenborg
The mind attracted by what is false has no relish for better things. Horace; Quintus Horatius
A fool always accuses other people; a partially wise man himself; a wholly wise man, neither himself nor others. Johann Gottfried von Herder
Every one loves his country, his manners, his language, his wife, his children; not because they are the best in the World, but because they are absolutely his own, and he loves himself and his own labors in them. Johann Gottfried von Herder
A fool always finds a greater fool to admire him Nicolas Boileau-Despreaux
A man never rises so high as when he knows not whither he is going. Oliver Cromwell
He is rich enough who has no wants. Italian Proverb
We have created a Star Wars civilization but we have Paleolithic emotions, medieval institutions and godlike technology. That's dangerous. Edward O. Wilson
It is futile to go against human nature. George S. Patton
Loneliness is not a problem in traditional societies. People spend their lives in or near the place where they were born, and they remain surrounded by relatives and childhood companions. Jared Diamond
In society at large, … nostalgia can distort our understanding of the world in dangerous ways, making it needlessly negative about our current situation. Stephanie Coontz
Human beings can do some God-awful things to other human beings Donald Rumsfeld
If individuals have no sufficient reason to believe that a good situation today will have adverse long-term consequences, it must always be rational for them to aim to maximize their short-term good. John Maynard Keynes
To me, the only sin is mediocrity. Martha Graham
If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough. Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf
Colombians! I will not speak to you of freedom, because if I keep my promises, you will be more than free. You will be respected…. Besides in a dictatorship who can speak of freedom. Simon Bolivar
No government or social system is so evil that its people must be considered as lacking in virtue. John F. Kennedy
It is bad religion to deify doctrines and creeds. While indispensable to religious life, doctrines and creeds are only so as signposts. Love alone is the hitching post. Doctrines, let’s not forget, supported slavery and apartheid; some still strive to keep women in their place and gays and lesbians in limbo. Moreover, doctrines can divide, while compassion can only unite William Sloane Coffin
If any expert or scientist reaches a conclusion or espouses a view that departs from the ideologue’s world view, it is the expert that he examines carefully and not his ideology. Lewis D. Eigen
Never trust anyone without a vested interest. Lewis D. Eigen
When a government faces an evil that might be avoided, the usual pattern is to first debate whether or not the evil is real or imagined; then determine how evil it really is; then is it an appropriate function of government to avoid it? Then what are the alternative ways to avoid it? Then what are the costs to avoid it? And finally, is the benefit of avoiding the evil worth the cost? In those cases where it is, it is by this time too late to avoid the evil and discussions shift to ameliorating the evil. Lewis D. Eigen
Where you stand depends on where you work. Lewis D. Eigen
Resentment is the poison we drink, hoping it will hurt others. Nelson Mandela
Virginians and all who belong to slaveholding communities seem an exceptional, abnormal race, unlike anything else in Christendom. George Templeton Strong
No man resolved to make the most of himself, can spare time for personal contention. Still less can he afford to take all the consequences, including the vitiating of his temper, and the loss of self-control. Yield larger things to which you can show no more than equal right; and yield lesser ones, though clearly your own. Better to give your path to a dog, than be bitten by him in contesting the right. Even killing the dog would not cure the bite Abraham Lincoln
No government or social system is so evil that its people must be considered as lacking in virtue. John F. Kennedy
Kings are but men, are subject to all the passions and frailties of human nature, and consequently are too prompt to grasp at arbitrary power, and to wish to make all things bend and submit to their will & pleasure. Dan Foster
There are two things that seem to be at the bottom of our constitutions; one is a continual tendency towards politics; the other is family pride; and it is strange how these two feelings run through all of us. Henry Adams
I must respect the opinions of others even if I disagree with them. Herbert H Lehman
For we Americans, we are restless, the restless of all nations. None but the restless has ever come to America. Pearl S. Buck
He will be an extraordinary person, that pure American, who will be standing in my place five thousand years from today. He will have what no other human being has had in just the same richness, the inheritance of all ages, all races, all cultures…. a true superman, standing on the shoulders of those from all nations and races of the earth. Pearl S. Buck
Respect is the first requisite to good fellowship. Eleanor Roosevelt
It is a funny thing how hard it is to see the other fellow's point of view. Eleanor Roosevelt
It’s very hard to write regulations that will prevent people from acting foolishly—particularly when acting foolishly has recently made them a lot of money. Warren Buffett
In this quest to seek and find God in all things there is still an area of uncertainty. There must be. If a person says that he met God with total certainty and is not touched by a margin of uncertainty, then this is not good. For me, this is an important key. If one has the answers to all the questions—that is the proof that God is not with him. It means that he is a false prophet using religion for himself. The great leaders of the people of God, like Moses, have always left room for doubt. Pope Francis I
If the Christian is a restorationist, a legalist, if he wants everything clear and safe, then he will find nothing. Pope Francis I
In this quest to seek and find God in all things there is still an area of uncertainty. There must be. If a person says that he met God with total certainty and is not touched by a margin of uncertainty, then this is not good. For me, this is an important key. If one has the answers to all the questions—that is the proof that God is not with him. It means that he is a false prophet using religion for himself. The great leaders of the people of God, like Moses, have always left room for doubt. Pope Francis I
… people never become a mass, they remain entities, and so you are able to feel human suffering and make others feel it because it is represented to you by individuals Eleanor Roosevelt
No one expresses very great faith in the unselfishness of human being and everybody seems to acknowledge the fact that we must count on a certain amount of greed and willingness on the part of some human beings to prey upon others. Eleanor Roosevelt
The more you are in public life, the more you wonder at the credulity of the average human being. Eleanor Roosevelt
I often wonder which is best, to be honest about what you know in this world, or to continue to deny you know it and thereby fool yourself into believing that it does not exist! Eleanor Roosevelt
I like the people … who stand around and say so little but who are always ready to do something if it needs to be done. Eleanor Roosevelt
One of the things I think we need to emphasize to all young people, whether rich or poor, is the fact that while everyone needs to be able to provide themselves with a decent standard of living, lacking certain other qualifications in themselves, the money which makes such a standard possible will not give them a happy life. Eleanor Roosevelt
The more you have, the more you want L'appetit vient en mangeant French Proverb
The Negro is the same as any other minority group he is clannish and tends to select neighbors who are of the same background and race. Unless other builders opened housing to all, I could not afford the decline in sales that would result if Negroes enjoyed equal access to my houses. William J. Levitt
The Truth, when you finally chase it down, is almost always far worse than your darkest visions and fears. Hunter S. Thompson
And again, hast thou valued Patience, Courage, Perseverance, Openness to light; readiness to own thyself mistaken, to do better next time Thomas Carlyle
My mouth was faster than my brain. Sometimes it just comes out. Harry Reid
The major forces in human nature: self interest and caring for others Bill Gates
Human beings will make the best out of any situation. Deborah Amos
People do not like to be confronted with unpleasant possibilities of their own futures. Margaret Atwood
For the great enemy of truth is very often not the lie--deliberate, contrived and dishonest--but the myth--persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the cliches of our forebears. We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought. John F. Kennedy
We can all become better than we are. James Baldwin
As I allow myself my own weaknesses, I should tolerate the weaknesses of others. Shimon Peres
To understand another human being you must gain some insight into the conditions which made him what he is. Margaret Bourke-White
He refused to let hate make him hate. Andrew Young
People tend to simplify things. Stanley A. McChrystal
We can’t all be better than everyone else. Tali Sharot
Our perceptions are limited. Our brains distort the truth. So do we ever know what is real? That is the mission of science. To probe deep into the massive puzzle box of nature to find its ultimate truths. Morgan Freeman
The Optimism Bias: This is why our warnings on cigarette packages go unheeded. Yes smoking kills 6 million people per year. Smokers believe that it will kill the other guy. Morgan Freeman
There is a tendency to overestimate the positive things in our lives and underestimate the possibility of negative things Tali Sharot
We project our doubts about ourselves onto our leaders. This has been a role of political leaders forever. Claire Crawford-Mason
If men define situations as real, they are real in their consequences. Robert K. Merton
We care less about situations that are complex, difficult to tell and difficult to understand. Jason K. Stearns
The experts, for all their superior knowledge, rarely do better than chance in predicting future events. Philip E. Tetlock
Who you are and what you think of yourself is constantly changing. Buddha
War is uncertain, precisely because it is political and human. Herbert Raymond McMaster
The associations inside the group become more important than those outside. Slade Gorton
Culture is the silent killer of innovation. Ann Richards
Fools rush in where fools have been before. Ann Richards
Most of these people habitually led rather gray lives. And they came to see the president much as they would have come to see the circus. It was something to talk over and remember and tell their children about. But I think that besides the mere curiosity there was good feeling behind it all, a feeling that the president was their man and symbolized their government, and that they had a proprietary interest in him and wished to see him and that they hoped he embodied their aspirations and their best thoughts. Theodore Roosevelt
These days, only the most extreme, most apocalyptic situations are likely to move donors in the rich world. David Rieff
There have been few more potent motivating factors in history than humiliation and the desire to overcome it. Kenneth Minogue
There are two things that are infinite: The universe and human folly. And sometimes I am not sure about the universe. Albert Einstein
Anybody who is successful and does not use the word “luck” is a liar. Paul Newman
Your people invented guilt, but my people perfected it. Susan Collins
Liberty is always won where there exists the unconquerable will to be free. Jefferson Davis
The lady—bearer of this—says she has two sons who want to work. See them at it, if possible. Wanting to work is so rare a merit, that it should be encouraged. Abraham Lincoln
It takes 4 generations to heal one act of violence Wilma Mankiller
When one has genuinely chosen a course for oneself it cannot be possible to hold another responsible for it. Germaine Greer
The surrender of life is nothing to sinking down into acknowledgment of inferiority.. John C. Calhoun
It is a curiosity of human nature that lack of self-assurance seems to breed an exaggerated sense of power and mission. J. William Fulbright
It is not so much that women have a different point of view in politics as that they give a different emphasis. And this is vastly important, for politics is so largely a matter of emphasis Crystal Eastman
The eye sees only what the mind is prepared to comprehend Robertson Davies
That in affairs of very considerable importance men should deal with one another with satisfaction of mind, and mutual confidence, they must receive competent assurances concerning the integrity, fidelity, and constancy each of other Isaac Barrow
Men often act knowingly against their interest David Hume
The ages of greatest public spirit are not always eminent for private virtue. David Hume
When men are most sure and arrogant, they are commonly the most mistaken. David Hume
Only stupid people don't change their minds. Boutros Boutros-Ghali
… there is a correlation between the creative and the screwball. So we must suffer the screwball gladly. Kingman Brewster, Jr.
I know well what I am fleeing from but not what I am in search of. Michel de Montaigne
No one gets up early to do laundry for a species, Ruth Graham

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