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Quote Author Cited
The greatness of America lies not in being more enlightened than any other nation, but rather in her ability to repair her faults. Alexis de Tocqueville
It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere. Voltaire
Rather than being any longer a threat to the established … order, Christianity became what practically all this earth's religions, launched in the name of spiritual enlightenment and freedom, have also become: a powerful way of perpetuating that order. Riane Eisler
If fathers wish to educate their daughters beyond what is customary, for want of trained older women and on account of the extreme negligence which has become women's sad lit, since well-educated older women are unavailable, they are obliged to bring in men teachers to give instruction in reading, writing, and arithmetic, playing musical instruments, and other skills…. As a result of this, many fathers prefer leaving their daughters in a barbaric, uncivilized state to exposing them to an evident danger such as familiarity with men breeds. All of which would be eliminated if there were older women of learning Juana Ines de la Cruz
The state considers that its purpose is to enlighten, to develop, to enlarge, to strengthen, to spiritualize, and to sanctify the soul of the people. Alphonse de Lamartine
The more rulers strive to curtail freedom of speech, the more obstinately are they resisted; …. laws directed against opinions affect the generous minded rather than the wicked, and are adapted less for coercing criminals than for irritating the upright; so that they cannot be maintained without great peril to the state. Baruch Spinoza
Whenever the legislators endeavor to take away and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they put themselves into a state of war with the people, who are thereupon absolved from any further obedience. John Locke
The art of government consists in taking as much money as possible from one party of the citizens to give to the other. Voltaire
There are two visions of America. One precedes our founding fathers and finds its roots in the harshness of our puritan past. It is very suspicious of freedom, uncomfortable with diversity, hostile to science, unfriendly to reason, contemptuous of personal autonomy. It sees America as a religious nation. It views patriotism as allegiance to God. It secretly adores coercion and conformity. Despite our constitution, despite the legacy of the Enlightenment, it appeals to millions of Americans and threatens our freedom. The other vision finds its roots in the spirit of our founding revolution and in the leaders of this nation who embraced the age of reason. It loves freedom, encourages diversity, embraces science and affirms the dignity and rights of every individual. It sees America as a moral nation, neither completely religious nor completely secular. It defines patriotism as love of country and of the people who make it strong. It defends all citizens against unjust coercion and irrational conformity. Sherwin T. Wine
In European states all subjects have equal rights and under a single legislation, whatever their [religious or ethnic] origins… Without such a system, no justice is possible, because each party views its interests in a different way. With time, all the religious communities…become absorbed in pursuing their separate goals, and they regard as political tyranny any attempt to remove the distinctions between them. This runs counter to natural law, which ultimately governs over all. Amin Shumayyil
March on the Independence of Haiti Frank Johnson
Large power distances in a society mean fewer checks and balances and stronger temptation for power holders to illegally enrich themselves. Enlightened rulers can impose checks where traditional culture does not provide them Geert Hoftstede
If there is any place on earth that needs light, it is certainly New York. Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi
Liberty Enlightening the World Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi
… a model of political virtues and moral enlightenment unique in the history of mankind. Simon Bolivar
The mob does not deserve to be enlightened. Frederick II
I know of no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. Thomas Jefferson
Freedom is not a luxury that we can indulge in when at last we have security and prosperity and enlightenment; it is, rather, antecedent to all of these, for without it we can have neither security nor prosperity nor enlightenment. Henry Steele Commager
As nature has uncovered from under this hard shell the seed for which she most tenderly cares - the propensity and vocation to free thinking—this gradually works back upon the character of the people, who thereby gradually become capable of managing freedom; finally, it affects the principles of government, which finds it to its advantage to treat men, who are now more than machines, in accordance with their dignity. Immanuel Kant
It is evident that slavery wrested its prey from the eaters of human flesh, but it has only progressed in regard to cannibalism; whenever it finds itself in the presence of Christianism, and, above all, of human reason, it must abdicate under penalty of becoming monstrous.--The persistency of the Southern States in slavery is the greatest moral deformity of the nineteenth century Victor Hugo
Each day reason penetrates further into France, into the shops of merchants as well as the mansions of lords. We must cultivate the fruits of this reason, especially since it is impossible to check its advance. One cannot govern France, after it has been enlightened by Pascal, Nicole, Arnauld, Bossuiet, Descartes, Gassendi, Bayle, Fontenelle, and the others, as it as been governed in the times of Garasse and Menot. Voltaire
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
The fewer dogmas, the fewer disputes; the fewer disputes, the fewer miseries Voltaire
If Russia ceased to be Holy Russia, she would become nothing more than a mere horde of tribal savages, intent upon destroying each other John of Kronstadt; John Ilyitch Sergieff
The Church, by the internal law of her being, cannot renounce her calling to enlighten, to transform the whole human life, to imbue it with her rays Russian Orthodox Church
No nation can ever be worthy of its existence that cannot take its women along with the men. No struggle can ever succeed without women participating side by side with men. There are two powers in the world; one is the sword and the other is the pen. There is a great competition and rivalry between the two. There is a third power stronger than both, that of the women Muhammad Ali Jinnah
No Muslim country is going the way of Turkey. Even Turkey has stopped going the way of Turkey. Dinesh D'Souza
And in the general hardening of outlook that set in ... practices which had been long abandoned - imprisonment without trial, the use of war prisoners as slaves, public executions, torture to extract confessions ... and the deportation of whole populations -- not only became common again, but were tolerated and even defended by people who considered themselves enlightened and progressive George Orwell Blair
… toleration is the best and only policy; … it is best to suffer colonies or inferior nations to retain their own particular creeds and rites and ceremonies in religion, and their own particular modes of administering justice in civil or criminal matters; that improvements may be proposed to them, but not enforced; that till they can be properly enlightened, they must be left to indulge their own particular notions. William Smyth
The public use of man's reason must always be free, and it alone can cause enlightenment. Immanuel Kant
Democracy alone, of all forms of government, enlists the full force of men's enlightened will. Franklin D. Roosevelt
All that is required for this enlightenment is freedom; and particularly the least harmful of all that may be called freedom, namely, the freedom for man to make public use of his reason in all matters. But I hear people clamor on all sides: Don't argue! The officer says: Don't argue, drill! The tax collector: Don't argue, pay! The pastor: Don't argue, believe! The public use of a man's reason must be free at all times, and this alone can bring enlightenment among men... Immanuel Kant
Every burned book or house enlightens the world; every suppressed or expunged word reverberates through the earth from side to side. Ralph Waldo Emerson
The British Empire wasn't some project designed to bring enlightenment to ignorant savages, but rather a brutal and rapacious exploitation of peoples who were often more humane than us. Alexei Sayle
The new States will know less of the public interest than these; will have an interest in many respects different; in particular will be little scrupulous of involving the community in wars, the burdens and operations of which would fall chiefly on the maritime States. Provision ought, therefore, to be made to prevent the maritime States from being hereafter outvoted by them…. They would not be able to furnish men equally enlightened to share in the administration of our common interests. The busy haunts of men, not the remote wilderness, was the proper school of political talents. If the Western people get power into their hands, they will ruin the Atlantic interest. The back members are always most averse to the best measures…. You have no authority to throw the rights and property of this people into the 'hotch-pot' with the wild men on the Missouri, nor with the mixed, though more respectable, race of Anglo-Hispano-Gallo-Americans who bask on the sands in the mouth of the Mississippi.... Gouverneur Morris
Enlightenment is terror; when you light up the world, you make its filth clearer. Karlheinz Deschner
… we are marching backward to the glorious ages of the sixteenth century when bigots lighted fagots to burn the men who dared to bring any intelligence and enlightenment and culture to the human mind. Clarence Darrow
The arbitrary rule of a just and enlightened prince is always bad. His virtues are the most dangerous and the surest form of seduction: they lull a people imperceptibly into the habit of loving, respecting, and serving his successor, whoever that successor may be, no matter how wicked or stupid. Denis Diderot
It will be found an unjust and unwise jealousy to deprive a man of his natural liberty upon a supposition that he may abuse it. Oliver Cromwell
That (The United States) has continued to exist and prosper, that it has not been overthrown at the first sign of danger. In spite of the fact that this people is a singular model of political virtue and moral enlightenment, that liberty has been its cradle, that it has been reared in and fed upon pure liberty, it is a marvel that a system so weak and complicated as the federal has been able to endure...I has never even remotely entered my mind to consider a parallel between the positions and natures as distinct as the Anglo- and Hispano-American Simon Bolivar
If you want to take gender studies, that’s fine, go to a private school. But I don’t want to subsidize that if that’s not going to get someone a job.” Pat McCrory
France is the most civilized country there is. Benjamin Franklin
Education came to be one of the great preoccupations, enlightenment was viewed as the greatest single opportunity to escape . . . . Parents made untold sacrifice to secure learning for their children that they had been denied. John Hope Franklin
[It] is exactly what politicians want. They want you to feel and behave like children while they pretend to be the all-knowing benevolent father. While they rile you up about how immigrants are stealing your jobs, they distract you from enlightening facts, including the assessment of some experts that the influx of Latino immigrant workers of the past 25 years has had less effect on employment patterns than factories that moved abroad, the decline of labor unions and the recurring recessions. So while we’re told to focus on building a massive wall to keep out immigrants, the real causes of job loss and economic instability continue unabated. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
I leaned in science class that everything that generates light generates a little bit of heat, but not everything that generates head generates light. So it is with journalism. Joshua Johnson