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Quotations about Learning


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It is generally a more productive day when you learn something from life rather than try to teach it something. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com, 2019


The man who is too old to learn was probably always too old to learn. ~Henry Stanley Haskins, "De Senectute," Meditations in Wall Street, 1940


Learning is often spoken of as if we are watching the open pages of all the books which we have ever read, and then, when occasion arises, we select the right page to read aloud to the universe. ~Alfred North Whitehead, address delivered to the Training College Association of England, quoted in Bulletin of The American Association of University Professors, November 1923, Volume IX, Number 7


Why don't they pass a Constitutional Amendment prohibiting anybody from learning anything? If it works as good as Prohibition did, in five years we will have the smartest people on earth. ~Will Rogers


It's a mistake, when life hands you a tough lesson, to think that you can get back at life by not learning it. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com


A single conversation with a wise man during the eating of a meal, is better than ten years' mere study of books. ~Chinese Proverb  [Quoted in Justus Doolittle, A Vocabulary and Hand-Book of the Chinese Language, Romanized in the Mandarin Dialect, "Metaphorical and Proverbial Sentences," 1872. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]


But though his thought and talk were all bookish and smelt of the lamp, yet they were as racy with the elements of every-day life as they were flavored with the essence of all good literatures. The truth was, he lived two lives: one alone with his library, the other active in courts; the one led him in silence through the memorable thoughts and splendid epitaphs of the dead; the other in noise and confusion through the jealous hearts and squabbling tongues and tedious narratives of the living. By both he educated himself... ~Edward G. Parker, Reminiscences of Rufus Choate, The Great American Advocate, 1860


If you're always Right then you're Too Smart to Learn. ~Arthur Guiterman, 1924  [a little altered —tg]


Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere. ~Chinese proverb


All the world is a laboratory to the inquiring mind. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)


You owe the World for all you learn;
In Payment you should Teach in turn.
~Arthur Guiterman, "Of Duty," A Poet's Proverbs, 1924


Be a student of life and a lifelong student. ~Terri Guillemets, "In Progress," 1997


There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm. ~Willa Cather


Admitting you don't know, is going
The First Step on the Road to Knowing.
~Arthur Guiterman, "Of Truth," A Poet's Proverbs, 1924


The more that you read,
the more things you will know.
The more that you learn,
the more places you'll go.
~Dr. Seuss, I Can Read with My Eyes Shut!, 1978


Anyone who stops learning is old, whether this happens at 20 or at 80. Anyone who keeps on learning not only remains young, but becomes constantly more valuable, regardless of physical capacity. ~Henry Ford, 1929


I find four great classes of students:
      The dumb who stay dumb;
      The dumb who become wise;
      The wise who go dumb;
      The wise who remain wise.
~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)


Learn on, live on! ~Terri Guillemets, "Meanings," 2000


...If you keep
your eyes open enough,
oh, the stuff you will learn!
The most wonderful stuff!...
There are
so many things
you can learn about.
BUT… you'll miss
the best things
if you keep your eyes shut...
~Dr. Seuss, I Can Read with My Eyes Shut!, 1978


You're never too old or too smart to learn. ~Mary Martensen (pseudonym of Dorothy Thompson), 1961  [a little altered —tg]


Man is never too old to unlearn. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor


Education consists mainly in what we have unlearned. ~Mark Twain


It is not hard to learn more. What is hard is to unlearn when you discover yourself wrong. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)


Each day learn something new, and just as important, relearn something old. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com


You have learnt something. That always feels at first as if you had lost something. ~Bernard Shaw, Major Barbara: A Discussion in Three Long Acts {Act III, Andrew Undershaft; performed 1905, published 1907}


The sixth grade seemed to please him from the beginning: he went through a brief Egyptian Period that baffled me — he tried to walk flat a great deal, sticking one arm in front of him and one in back of him, putting one foot behind the other. He declared Egyptians walked that way; I said if they did I didn't see how they got anything done, but Jem said they accomplished more than the Americans ever did, they invented toilet paper and perpetual embalming, and asked where would we be today if they hadn't? Atticus told me to delete the adjectives and I'd have the facts. ~Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, 1960


Every act of conscious learning requires the willingness to suffer an injury to one's self-esteem. That is why young children, before they are aware of their own self-importance, learn so easily; and why older persons, especially if vain or important, cannot learn at all. ~Thomas Szasz, The Second Sin, 1973


You're not dumb, or stupid — just thoroughly wrong. ~Teacher extraordinaire, Mr Jerry Kopke, said to his students, c.1980s


Learning is a lifetime process, but there comes a time when we must stop adding and start updating. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com


The pupil can only educate himself. Teachers are the custodians of apparatus upon which he himself must turn and twist to acquire the excellencies that distinguish the better from the poorer of God's vessels. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)


A watched child never learns. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com


People learn something every day, and a lot of times it's that what they learned the day before was wrong. ~Bill Vaughan, as quoted in The Reader's Digest, 1978


Learning is like rowing upstream: not to advance is to drop back. ~Chinese proverb



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