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Quotations of Perspective

Related Quotes      Philosophical      Hmmm      Reality      Wisdom

In a rapidly ascending balloon were two men.
One watched the earth getting farther and farther away.
One watched the stars getting nearer and nearer.
~George Jean Nathan, "Viewpoint," A Book Without a Title, 1918

The deer isn't crossing the road. It's crossing the forest. ~Author unknown

If you do not raise your eyes you will think that you are the highest point. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

In the presence of eternity, the mountains are as transient as the clouds. ~Robert Green Ingersoll

There are truths on this side of the Pyrénées, which are falsehoods on the other. ~Blaise Pascal

So often in life a new chapter awaits. You ride off into the sunset and discover it's the sunrise. ~Robert Brault,

Every sunset is also a sunrise. It depends on where you stand. ~Author unknown

What if when you die, they ask "How was heaven?" ~Author Unknown

Advice to children crossing the street: damn the lights. Watch the cars. The lights ain't never killed nobody. ~Moms Mabley

You spend years learning what's important and one heart-stopping moment learning what's more important. ~Robert Brault,, 2019

The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false-face for the urge to rule it. ~H.L. Mencken, Minority Report, 1956

Inside my empty bottle
I was constructing a lighthouse
While all the others
Were making ships.
~Charles Simic, "Solving the Riddle," Return to a Place Lit by a Glass of Milk, 1974

Strong measures are the first resort of the weak; the last of the strong. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor

The world is round and the place which may seem like the end may also be only the beginning. ~Ivy Baker Priest

Won't you come into the garden? I would like my roses to see you. ~Richard Brinsley Sheridan

People who look through keyholes are apt to get the idea that most things are keyhole shaped. ~Author Unknown

I am chained to the earth to pay for the freedom of my eyes. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

No object is mysterious. The mystery is your eye. ~Elizabeth Bowen, The House in Paris, 1935

Sin is geographical. ~Bertrand Russell

I think in terms of the day's resolutions, not the years'. ~Henry Moore

Set out from any point. They are all alike. They all lead to a point of departure. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

Someone said, "The dead writers are remote from us because we know so much more than they did." Precisely, and they are that which we know. ~T.S. Eliot

Immorality: The morality of those who are having a better time. ~H.L. Mencken

In order for something to become clean, something else must become dirty. ~Imbesi's Conservation of Filth Law

If you're being run out of town, get in front of the crowd and make it look like a parade. ~Author Unknown

Do not call any work menial until you have watched a proud person do it. ~Robert Brault,

Chaos is a name for any order that produces confusion in our minds. ~George Santayana

The moment one gives close attention to any thing, even a blade of grass it becomes a mysterious, awesome, indescribably magnificent world in itself. ~Henry Miller

All honor's wounds are self-inflicted. ~Andrew Carnegie

The enemy is anybody who's going to get you killed, no matter which side he's on. ~Joseph Heller, Catch-22

He is my greatest well-wisher who wishes me not only all attainment, but much defeat. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Prayer, 1904

There's no such thing as bragging. You're either lying or telling the truth. ~Al Oliver

A penny will hide the biggest star in the Universe if you hold it close enough to your eye. ~Samuel Grafton

It is the barely-visible stars which sharpen our eyesight. ~Henry Stanley Haskins, "The Order of Nature," Meditations in Wall Street, 1940

Is the glass half empty, half full, or twice as large as it needs to be? ~Author Unknown

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 (1807–1882), "Drift Wood, A Collection of Essays: Table-Talk," Prose Works of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, 1857

A surrender is sometimes merely a way of avoiding capture. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor

If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail. ~Abraham Maslow

Don't think of organ donations as giving up part of yourself to keep a total stranger alive. It's really a total stranger giving up almost all of themselves to keep part of you alive. ~Author Unknown

Be careful how you interpret the world: It is like that. ~Erich Heller

Proverbs for Paranoids, 3: If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about answers. ~Thomas Pynchon, Jr., Gravity's Rainbow, 1973

Astronomers always work in the past; because light takes time to move from one place to another, they see things as they were, not as they are. ~Neale E. Howard, The Telescope Handbook and Star Atlas, 1967

Each act is virgin, even the repeated ones. ~René Char

As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he. As a man sees in his heart, so he sees. Through unclean windows, lenses, senses, we see things not as they are but as we are. ~Jersey Journal, 1914

The aim of an argument or discussion should not be victory, but progress. ~Joseph Joubert, Pensées, 1842

The average man will bristle if you say his father was dishonest, but he will brag a little if he discovers that his great-grandfather was a pirate. ~Bern Williams

[N]o man but feels more of a man in the world if he have a bit of ground that he can call his own. However small it is on the surface, it is four thousand miles deep; and that is a very handsome property. ~Charles Dudley Warner, "Preliminary," My Summer in a Garden, 1870

The guy who invented the first wheel was an idiot. The guy who invented the other three, he was a genius. ~Sid Caesar

He who looks before he leaps is often satisfied to stay where he is. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor

Feast, n. A festival. A religious celebration usually signalized by gluttony and drunkenness, frequently in honor of some holy person distinguished for abstemiousness. ~Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary

Efficiency is intelligent laziness. ~David Dunham

I searched up and down the earth — and found it in my own soul. I implored heaven and hell — and the field daisies answered me. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Prayer, 1904

An impossibility does not disturb us until its accomplishment shows what fools we were. ~Henry Stanley Haskins, "Marginalia," Meditations in Wall Street, 1940

It is not enough for a man to know how to ride; he must know how to fall. ~Mexican Proverb

If you wish to make an apple pie truly from scratch, you must first invent the universe. ~Carl Sagan

A man should never be ashamed to own he has been in the wrong, which is but saying... that he is wiser today than he was yesterday. ~Alexander Pope, in Swift, Miscellanies

Hay is more acceptable to an ass than gold. ~Latin Proverb

When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight. ~Khalil Gibran (1883–1931), The Prophet

If you want total security, go to prison. There you're fed, clothed, given medical care and so on. The only thing lacking... is freedom. ~Dwight D. Eisenhower

Every man regards his own life as the New Year's Eve of time. ~Jean Paul Richter

We envy others, for we see their lives in broad outline, while forced to live ours in every detail. ~Robert Brault,

All the suns labor to kindle your flame and a microbe puts it out. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

There is no burnt rice to a hungry person. ~Philippine Proverb

If one man offers you democracy and another offers you a bag of grain, at what stage of starvation will you prefer the grain to the vote? ~Bertrand Russell

Dare to turn life on its end, and you may find that topsy-turvy is a truer perspective than turvy-topsy. ~Robert Brault,

Nothing is further than Earth from Heaven: nothing is nearer than Heaven to Earth. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827

Well, every one can master a grief but he that has it. ~William Shakespeare, Much Ado about Nothing, c.1598  [III, 2, Benedick]

Man looks earthward with a microscopic eye; heavenward with telescopic lenses. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

As far as the Moon is concerned, he is always full. ~Terri Guillemets

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost.
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
~J.R.R. Tolkien

Nothing in the universe can travel at the speed of light, they say, forgetful of the shadow's speed. ~Howard Nemerov

How many of our daydreams would darken into nightmares, were there a danger of their coming true! ~Logan Pearsall Smith

Life is inherently paradoxical: every dream has the potential for nightmare; every nightmare may reveal some truth. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer,

Everybody's talking about people breaking into houses but there are more people in the world who want to break out of houses. ~Thornton Wilder, The Matchmaker, 1955

Reading the words of Hitler, Stalin, or the Marquis de Sade may be hard on the nervous system, but set against the thoughts of a Jefferson or a John Stuart Mill they help us to see the deeper meanings of democracy and demagoguery, individualism and collectivism, intellect and propaganda. ~Wesley Douglass Camp (1915–1991), Preface to What a Piece of Work Is Man: Camp's Unfamiliar Quotations from 2000 B.C. to the Present, 1989

Nothing is less promising than precocity. A young thistle is more like a future tree than is a young oak. ~Marie Dubsky, Freifrau von Ebner-Eschenbach (1830–1916), translated by Mrs Annis Lee Wister, 1882

It is good sometimes, as we jog along in our smooth-riding waggon of Progress, to steal our way... to the rear of the vehicle and look back upon the road by which it has come. Then it is that we experience the mental counterpart of that physical sensation of travelling backwards so charmingly described by Margaret Fairless Barber in The Roadmender. To look backward for a while is to refresh the eye, to restore it, and to render it the more fit for its prime function of looking forwards. There is something less dynamic and more reposeful in a retreating landscape than in an advancing one. A retreating scene appears to be withdrawn gently and smoothly from our gaze; an advancing one intrudes itself with bustle, flurry, and arrogance. This contrast is more especially felt when the vehicle is a rapidly moving one. And as with physical so it is with intellectual vision. We are all the better for the repose and refreshment of an occasional glance backward, the more so since our waggon of Progress is ever being urged forward with accelerated velocities. ~E. W. Adams, "The Philosophy of Epicurus — An Unclosed Chapter in Human Thought," in The Hibbert Journal, 1921  [A little altered. See Fairless quotation below. —tg]

I lay as in a blissful dream and watched my road unfold... It is like Life, this travelling backwards — that which has been, alone visible — like Life, which is after all, retrospective with a steady moving on into the Unknown and the Unseen... ~Michael Fairless (Margaret Fairless Barber, d. 1901), The Roadmender, No. VI, 1900

If I had been around when Rubens was painting, I would have been revered as a fabulous model. Kate Moss? Well, she would have been the paintbrush. ~Dawn French

Flowers often grow more beautifully on dung-hills than in gardens that look beautifully kept. ~Saint Francis de Sales

It is seldom indeed that one parts on good terms, because if one were on good terms one would not part. ~Marcel Proust, The Fugitive, Remembrance of Things Past, 1925

There will be a time when you believe everything is finished. That will be the beginning. ~Louis L'Amour

Climb Mount Fuji,
O snail,
but slowly, slowly.
~Issa (1763–1827), translated from the Japanese by Robert Haas, 1994

We all have fog on our path at times — but clarity comes from within. ~Terri Guillemets

If we were unable to tell the sexes by their dress, nay, if in general we had to guess at them, a new world of love would arise. ~Georg Christoph Lichtenberg (1742–1799), translated by Norman Alliston, 1908

Gratitude, respect, friendship — funny how it's never called loyalty when there's actually a reason for it. ~Robert Brault,

The poor never estimate as a virtue the generosity of the rich. ~Marie Dubsky, Freifrau von Ebner-Eschenbach (1830–1916), translated by Mrs Annis Lee Wister, 1882

The rich would have to eat money if the poor did not provide food. ~Russian proverb

After the striving, the fine talk, and the grandeur of dreams — all that remains is an elegance of bones. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer,

Some people think they are in tune with the infinite when they are only out of tune with the definite. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1904, George Horace Lorimer, editor

You must judge a man's greatness by how much he will be missed. ~Will Rogers (1879–1935)

My play was a complete success. The audience was a failure. ~Ashleigh Brilliant

The tyrant is nothing but a slave turned inside out. ~Herbert Spencer

The bluebird carries the sky on his back. ~Henry David Thoreau

Expectant of greater things,
We try climbing -
And Higher;
An effort that costs us much,
Leaving us short of breath
To find only
The ground below is much prettier.
~Phillip Pulfrey, "Mountains" Love, Abstraction and other Speculations,

Offense is taken, not given. ~[Modern paraphrase of an older idea, I'm working on finding a good older version for quoting but haven't completed my research yet... —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
• "distinction between an offence given and an offence taken" (1816)
• "yet the offence is not given, but taken" (1681)
• "if others will take offence, and stumble, 'tis their sin, not mine... the offence is taken, not given" (1683)
• "the empty quibble that the offense was 'taken, not given'" (1846)

Vision is the art of seeing things invisible. ~Jonathan Swift, "Thoughts on Various Subjects," Miscellanies, 1711

Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world. ~Arthur Schopenhauer, "Studies in Pessimism," Psychological Observations, 1851

Vision may sometimes sleep in the sun, while it wakens to widest revelation in utter darkness. Thus I am rapt in a trance-like acceptance of opening cavernous depths, crypts of decyphered gloom, yielding hollows of velvet obscurity that go down, down to the roots of things. ~Virginia Garland, "The Rain," Out West: A Magazine of the Old Pacific and the New, February 1908

Just because a man lacks the use of his eyes doesn't mean he lacks vision. ~Stevie Wonder

There are those whose sole claim to profundity is the discovery of exceptions to the rules. ~Paul Eldridge

Exceptions do not always prove the rule; they may be even the first germs of a new rule. ~Marie Dubsky, Freifrau von Ebner-Eschenbach (1830–1916), translated by Mrs Annis Lee Wister, 1882

There's an alternative. There's always a third way, and it's not a combination of the other two ways. It's a different way. ~David Carradine

In smoldering ashes,
do you see dead fire? —
or the phoenix's glittering dreams?
~Terri Guillemets

The violence we do to ourselves in order to remain faithful to the one we love is hardly better than an act of infidelity. ~François VI de la Rochefoucault, Maxims

Just as important as having a list of priorities is every once in a while starting from the bottom. ~Robert Brault,

The chains that bind us most closely are the ones we have broken. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

If you see the world in black and white, you're missing important grey matter. ~Jack Fyock

Look back into folklore and legend, myth and religion, and you will find much of the emphasis is on the shadow. A shadowless man is a monster, a devil, a thing of evil. A man without a shadow is soulless. A shadow without a man is a pitiable shred. Yet together, light and dark, they make a whole. And these light/dark chiaroscuro figures walking about a magical landscape illumine all our lives. ~Jane Yolen, Touch Magic: Fantasy, Faerie and Folklore in the Literature of Childhood, 1981

Then my father's God did well
When he prohibited the fatal tree.
But had done better in not planting it.
But ignorance of evil doth not save
From evil: it must still roll on the same,
A part of all things.
~Lord Byron, "Cain"

A boil is no big deal. On someone else's neck. ~Jewish saying

If hindrances could hinder, not one could do his work. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Life, 1912

The most rapid motions are those which are not perceived; and the greatest changes, both in nature and life, are brought about by invisible causes. ~William Benton Clulow, Aphorisms and Reflections: A Miscellany of Thought and Opinion, 1843

I thank Thee first because I was never robbed before; second, because although they took my purse they did not take my life; third, because although they took my all, it was not much; and fourth because it was I who was robbed, and not I who robbed. ~Matthew Henry

Saints in stone have done more in the world than living ones. ~Georg Christoph Lichtenberg (1742–1799), translated by Norman Alliston, 1908

Events and external objects are, so to speak, but a neutral substance, which receives its colour and its significance from our soul. ~Alexandre Vinet (1797–1847)

So much unmerited honour has been paid me in my lifetime that I may upon occasion well put up with a little unmerited censure. ~Georg Christoph Lichtenberg (1742–1799), "The Character of a Person of my Acquaintance"  [Lichtenberg's unfinished "autopsychography" (Norman Alliston, 1908). —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

A kind soul knows impoliteness is just preoccupied with distraction. ~Mike Dolan, @HawaiianLife

The bat hanging upside down laughs at the topsy-turvy world. ~Japanese proverb

In the ideal sense nothing is uninteresting; there are only uninterested people. ~Brooks Atkinson

I am not an Athenian or a Greek, I am a citizen of the world. ~Socrates

A "fraternity" is the antithesis of fraternity. The first... is predicated on the idea of exclusion; the second (that is, the abstract thing) is based on a feeling of total equality. ~E.B. White, One Man's Meat, 1944

Equality looks like a peach, tastes like a lemon. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer,

If we would see others as they see themselves, our shyness would soon become compassion. ~Robert Brault,

Retreat, hell! We're just advancing in another direction. ~Oliver Prince Smith

Unappreciated Greatness often starves, while appreciated Littleness feeds on the fat of the land. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

That, chang'd thro' all and yet in all the same,
Great in the Earth as in th' Ætherial frame,
Warms in the Sun, refreshes in the Breeze,
Glows in the Stars, and blossoms in the Trees...
Breathes in our soul, informs our mortal part...
Submit — in this, or any other Sphere,
Secure to be as blest as thou canst bear.
All Nature is but Art, unknown to thee;
All Chance, Direction which thou canst not see;
All Discord, Harmony not understood...
All partial Evil, universal Good...
~Alexander Pope, An Essay on Man

Not everything that is more difficult is more meritorious. ~Saint Thomas Aquinas

An abridgement may be a bridge: it may help us over the water: but it keeps us from drinking. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827

An apology for the Devil: It must be remembered that we have only heard one side of the case. God has written all the books. ~Samuel Butler, Note-Books

The shadows: some hide, others reveal. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

Originality — A target best hit when not aimed at. ~Charles Searle, Look Here!, 1885

No one knows what they'll do in a moment of crisis and hypothetical questions get hypothetical answers. ~Joan Baez, "What Would You Do If....?"

It's a shame that philosophical ideals don't always match up to pragmatic reality. We live in an analog world, not a digital one, so binary black-and-white choices and reflexive adherence to absolutes are rarely useful or applicable. Deal with it. ~David C. Hill,

It's a shame that pragmatic reality doesn't always live up to our philosophical ideals. There is right and wrong, even if we aren't always gifted with the knowledge of which is which. One can too easily get lost in a world of greys, and so guarded commitment to some absolutes (while acknowledging one's own fallibility) can be essential to avoid sliding down that old slippery slope. ~David C. Hill,

Daughter am I in my mother's house;
But mistress in my own.
~Rudyard Kipling, "Our Lady of the Snows," 1898

What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight. ~Joseph Joubert

Johnsons are rare; yet, Boswells are perhaps still rarer. ~Thomas Carlyle

If my ship sails from sight, it doesn't mean my journey ends, it simply means the river bends. ~John Enoch Powell

Every once in a while, turn life over to see what it looks like from the other side. ~Terri Guillemets

A light supper, a good night's sleep, and a fine morning have often made a hero of the same man who by indigestion, a restless night, and a rainy morning, would have proved a coward. ~Earl of Chesterfield

I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead;
I lift my eyes and all is born again.
~Sylvia Plath, "Mad Girl's Love Song"

Why assume so glibly that the God who presumably created the universe is still running it? It is certainly conceivable that He may have finished it and then turned it over to lesser gods to operate. ~H.L. Mencken

There is that indescribable freshness and unconsciousness about an illiterate person that humbles and mocks the power of the noblest expressive genius. ~Walt Whitman

It is a positive fact that some thoughts please us when we are lying down which fail to please us any more when we are on our feet. ~Georg Christoph Lichtenberg (1742–1799), translated by Norman Alliston, 1908

I can't say as ever I was lost, but I was bewildered once for three days. ~Daniel Boone

While it may not be appropriate in every venue, and on every occasion, mockery is the guardian of reason, the enemy of pretension, and the mirror to folly. No belief, no passion, no commitment should be considered immune from the acerbic test of ridicule. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer,

But such a tiny and trivial thing as an umbrella can deprive you of the sight of such a stupendous fact as the sun. ~Meher Baba

“[R]omantic” doesn’t mean “sugary.” It’s dark and tormented — the furor of passion, the despair of an idealism that you can’t attain. ~Catherine Breillat

The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.
An evil soul producing holy witness
Is like a villain with a smiling cheek,
A goodly apple rotten at the heart:
O, what a goodly outside falsehood hath!
~William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice, c.1596  [I, 3, Antonio]

Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time. ~Steven Wright, A Steven Wright Special, 1985,

Love can illumine a dungeon, but it cannot fill an empty stomach. ~Minna Thomas Antrim (1861–1950), Phases, Mazes, and Crazes of Love, 1904

Control sometimes hurts more than chaos. ~Terri Guillemets

Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. ~Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary, 1911

Dreams alone aren't enough to make your belly full. ~Animal Crossing: Wild World (Nintendo video game) written by Takayuki Ikkaku, Arisa Hosaka, and Toshihiro Kawabata

GRACE  Something that comes just before Grumble at the dinner table. ~Charles Wayland Towne, The Altogether New Foolish Dictionary, by Gideon Wurdz, 1914

I have scarcely touched the sky and I am made of it. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

Given a little time, regulation regulates nothing. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)

It isn't that they can't see the solution. It is that they can't see the problem. ~G.K. Chesterton

There is no possible line of conduct which has at some time and place been condemned, and which has not at some other time and place been enjoined as a duty. ~William Lecky

Today I'm in a window mood,
to live seems just to look...
And when night falls, who knows,
perhaps I'll find I've spent all day
given to you, inexhaustible window,
to be the other half of the world.
~Rainer Maria Rilke (1875–1926), translated from the French by A. Poulin, Jr., 1979

What was most significant about the lunar voyage was not that men set foot on the moon but that they set eye on the earth. ~Norman Cousins

Nothing's a gift, it's all on loan. ~Wisława Szymborska (1923–2012), "Nothing's a Gift," The End and the Beginning, 1993, translated from the Polish by Stanisław Barańczak and Clare Cavanagh

The things which are most important don't always scream the loudest. ~Bob Hawke

Pain looks like a lot of things. You may not recognize it when you see it. ~Terri Guillemets, "Faces & temptation," 2003

The commonest opinions and the things that everybody takes for granted often most deserve examination. ~Georg Christoph Lichtenberg (1742–1799), translated by Norman Alliston, 1908

While his eyes saw the sky, his soul saw Heaven. ~K. Smith

Everyone slips onto the naughty list once in a while. ~Stevie Wermers-Skelton, Kevin Deters, and Chris Williams, Prep & Landing, 2009  [Santa to Wayne —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

If you see a whole thing — it seems that it's always beautiful. Planets, lives... But up close a world's all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. ~Ursula K. Le Guin

I love and honour him,
But must not break my back to heal his finger...
~William Shakespeare, Timon of Athens, c.1607  [II, 1, Senator]

It is hard to reform the boy who got whipped in his youth for telling the truth. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor

Why should I be ambitious? Shall I write verses? I am not likely to surpass Mr Tennyson or Mr Browning in that walk. Shall I be a musician? The blackbird singing this moment somewhere in my garden-shrubbery puts me to instant shame. Shall I paint? The intensest scarlet on an artist's palette is but ochre to that I saw this morning at sunrise.... I am happier as it is. I do not need to make history—there are plenty of people willing to save me trouble on that score. ~Alexander Smith, "Books and Gardens," Dreamthorp: A Book of Essays Written in the Country, 1863

The tyrant dies and his rule ends, the martyr dies and his rule begins. ~Søren Kierkegaard

Disappointment is as inevitable as hope is necessary. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer,

Old fool! I have made you weep again! Do not listen! I am death advising life how to live! Be deaf to me! Strive after what your heart desires! Who can ever know which are the mistakes we make? One should be either sad or joyful. Contentment is a warm sty where the eaters sleep and the sleepers eat! Do not weep! ~Eugene O'Neill, Marco's Millions, 1925–1927

If all the year were playing holidays,
To sport would be as tedious as to work...
~William Shakespeare, Henry IV, Part I, c.1597  [I, 2, Henry V]

Life is a series of tasks that you absolutely must get done before they don't matter any more. ~Robert Brault,

Some women look prettier than they are; others are prettier than they look. ~Charles Searle, Look Here!, 1885

Everything is vague to a degree you do not realize until you have tried to make it precise. ~Bertrand Russell, The Philosophy of Logical Atomism

Eddy is white, and we know he is because nobody says so. ~Toni Morrison, Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination, 1992

A gifted small girl has explained that pins are a great means of saving life, "by not swallowing them." ~Charles Edward Montague, Dramatic Values

[E]very saint has a past and every sinner has a future. ~Oscar Wilde, A Woman of No Importance, 1893

Addictions do come in handy sometimes: at least you have to get out of bed for them. ~Martin Amis

Our deeds determine us, as much as we determine our deeds; and until we know what has been or will be the peculiar combination of outward with inward facts, which constitute a man's critical actions, it will be better not to think ourselves wise about his character. There is a terrible coercion in our deeds which may at first turn the honest man into a deceiver, and then reconcile him to the change; for this reason—that the second wrong presents itself to him in the guise of the only practicable right. The action which before commission has been seen with that blended common sense and fresh untarnished feeling which is the healthy eye of the soul is looked at afterward with the lens of apologetic ingenuity, through which all things that men call beautiful and ugly are seen to be made up of textures very much alike. ~George Eliot, Adam Bede

It is easier to be the hero of the moment than the hero of every drudging hour and every grinding day. ~Robert Brault,

If a fanatic is willing to give his life for a cause, he's probably willing to give yours as well. ~David Gerrold

To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and, whatever you hit, call it the target. ~Patrick Toche

Do the stars out-number the sands of the sea?
What part is an hour of eternity?
Is the Past quite as long as the Future will be?
~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897

Nothing supports evil like the assumption of good people that there is some sort of line it will not cross. ~Robert Brault,, 2019

You taught me all about love, all about faith, and then God turned your lessons inside out, let me see the underside of every good thing you gave me. ~Margaret Blair Young, Heresies of Nature, 2002

Everything is best until we know better. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897

In reality, plants are farming humans — giving us oxygen until we eventually decompose so they can consume us. ~Author unknown, c. 2007

New is something old that has been long forgotten. ~Russian proverb

Publicity is not the same thing as immortality. ~Alena Smith, "Because I could not stop," Dickinson, 2019  [S1, E1; Death speaking to Emily —tg]

I'm afraid that if you look at a thing long enough, it loses all of its meaning. ~Andy Warhol

The activities you spent your time on yesterday were the things that were important to you. Calendars don't lie. ~Scott Ginsberg,

The highest virtue here may be least in another world. ~Khalil Gibran

Sometimes we must unfocus our way to clarity. ~Terri Guillemets

Don't confuse fun with fulfillment, or pleasure with happiness. ~Michael Josephson,

Education is indoctrination if you're white — subjugation if you're black. ~James Baldwin

I never ask God to give me anything; I only ask him to put me where things are. ~Mexican Proverb

Hints to the thoughtful are often more convincing than elaborate arguments. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

Distance is inspiration's best hearting. ~E. Marshall

One day it's your turn, and all the stumbling words of consolation you ever said are said to you — and they don't seem stumbling at all. ~Robert Brault,

To see the world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour.
~William Blake (1757-1827), "Auguries of Innocence"

I was walking my dog around my building — on the ledge. A lot of people are afraid of heights, not me — I'm afraid of widths. ~Steven Wright, A Steven Wright Special, 1985,

Nothing lasts forever, and forever doesn't last, either. ~Robert Brault,, 2019

If you cry "Forward," you must make plain in what direction to go. ~Anton Chekhov

To live in scarcity is to worry about the cost of food; to live in abundance is to worry about who else you can invite for dinner. ~Mike Dolan, @HawaiianLife

Morning walks —
rich man walks to digest food
a poor to earn.
~Kiran Bantawa, "Morning Walks"

We feed upon the finest of animal flesh, and at last ourselves become food for worms. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897

A senseless tragedy remains forever tragic, but it is up to us whether it remains forever senseless. ~Robert Brault,

You take my house when you do take the prop
That doth sustain my house; you take my life
When you do take the means whereby I live.
~William Shakespeare, Merchant of Venice, c.1596  [IV, 1, Shylock]

The real purpose of arbitration is to show that the other fellow is wrong. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor

Gayety always keeps company with servitude. This blessing God has given the poor to console them for their miseries, just as he has made certain grasses to grow between the pavements that we tread under our feet, certain birds to sing on the old towers, and the beautiful verdure of the ivy to smile upon grimacing ruins. ~Claude Tillier (1801–1844), My Uncle Benjamin: A Humorous, Satirical, and Philosophical Novel, 1843, translated from the French by Benjamin R. Tucker, 1890  [a little altered —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

The difference between a bandit and a patriot is a good press agent. ~Will Rogers (1879–1935)

The most amazing things that can happen to a human being will happen to you, if you just lower your expectations. ~"Phil's-osophy" by Phil Dunphy (Christopher Lloyd, Steven Levitan, and Dan O'Shannon, Modern Family, "Schooled," original airdate 2012 Oct 10)

He who takes his own time generally takes other people's, too. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1904, George Horace Lorimer, editor

A full heart has room for everything and an empty heart has room for nothing. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

In the hey-day I painted the spirit of the free, unfettered flight, and men passed it by, but later I painted the shadow of the broken pinion, and they came to look. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Life, 1912

All men have a reason, but not all men can give a reason. ~John Henry Cardinal Newman

It is concentration that counts. The flame of a candle applied direct is more uncomfortable than the diffused heat of a blast furnace. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor

In the dark, glitter is nothing but sand. ~Terri Guillemets

Presence is more than just being there. ~Malcolm S. Forbes, The Further Sayings of Chairman Malcolm

Progress is slow because it is the work of dreamers. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor

No man sees far; the most see no farther than their noses. ~Thomas Carlyle, "Count Cagliostro," 1833

Plagiarists, at least, have the merit of preservation. ~Benjamin Disraeli

Injury, when it is slight, upsets me; when it is strong it calms me. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

A child on a farm sees a plane fly overhead and dreams of a faraway place. A traveler on the plane sees the farmhouse below and dreams of home. ~Robert Brault,

Complete possession is proved only by giving. All you are unable to give possesses you. ~Andre Gide

There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root... ~Henry David Thoreau, Walden, 1854

You never know what you can't do till you try. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1904, George Horace Lorimer, editor

Evil always tries to paint good as foolishness and itself as common sense. ~Robert Brault,

An idea can turn to dust or magic, depending on the talent that rubs against it. ~William Bernbach

Sometimes the faces of the wicked are turned towards heaven for the first time when they are laid in the grave. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

A barley-corn is better than a diamond to a cock. ~Thomas Fuller's Gnomologia, 1732

One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries. ~A. A. Milne

'Tis not the meat, but 'tis the appetite makes eating a delight. ~John Suckling, Sonnet, c.1638

I'm right-handed, whereas the fellow in my mirror is left-handed. I start shaving from the left; he starts from the right. Differences only in perception, but religious wars have been fought over such. ~Robert Brault,

In creating, the only hard thing's to begin; a grass-blade's no easier to make than an oak. ~James Russell Lowell, A Fable for Critics, 1848

The tougher you are, the more fragile. ~Terri Guillemets

The minute atom has as many degrees of latitude and longitude as the mighty Jupiter. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897

I know what I have given you. I do not know what you have received. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

When the young doctors come to me and complain that the older men don't "throw them anything," I tell them that they don't know how to catch. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)

If a dream is realistic, it's not really a dream. It's a to-do. ~Kim & Jason Kotecki,

How long has it been since someone touched part of you other than your body? ~Terri Guillemets

The judicial mind is too commonly characterized by a regard for a fourth decimal as the equal of a whole number. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)

God and the devil lose to a common enemy: inertia. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1960

We pray for fruition, when, if our prayer were answered, our all-too-soon-ripened fruit would be worm-mellowed and wind-blown. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Life, 1912

Yes and No are always dancing. ~Betsy Cañas Garmon,

Eventually you realize that not all opposing viewpoints come from people who oppose you. ~Robert Brault,

The least unkindness from a friend is of greater smart than the hardest usage from an enemy. ~Greek proverb

We resent an injury from a friend more than from an enemy. ~Sophocles

A small wrong from a friend makes a greater wound in a man's heart than a great wrong from an enemy. ~Spanish proverb

The enemy of your enemy is your friend. ~Proverb

Too much attention to others' business often directs their attention to yours. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

Is devotion to others a cover for the hungers and the needs of the self, of which one is ashamed? I was always ashamed to take. So I gave. It was not virtue. It was a disguise. ~Anaïs Nin

The ability to reduce everything to simple fundamental laws does not imply the ability to start from those laws and reconstruct the universe. ~Philip W. Anderson, "More Is Different," Science Magazine

I have found that the conclusion, "Nobody cares" is always based on an insufficient sampling. ~Robert Brault,

It all depends on how we look at things, and not on how things are in themselves. The least of things with a meaning is worth more in life than the greatest of things without it. ~Carl Jung

If a man could have half his wishes, he would double his troubles. ~Benjamin Franklin

For many men, the acquisition of wealth does not end their troubles, it only changes them. ~Seneca

the universe isn't big
it fits inside each of us
~Terri Guillemets

What's frustrating about being disliked is that it's invariably for the wrong reason. ~Robert Brault,

An exhibitionist is nothing without a voyeur. ~S.A. Sachs

The same fence that shuts others out shuts you in. ~Bill Copeland

The one true measure of the things that matter in life is that they can't be insured against loss. ~Robert Brault,

The pyramids will not last a moment compared with the daisy. ~D.H. Lawrence

If the complexity of the universe demands, as explanation, an intelligent creator — then, by the same reasoning — so does the intelligent creator. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer,

What we see depends mainly on what we look for. ~John Lubbock

If it is dark, all men are black. ~Ghanaian proverb

An unattempted woman cannot boast of her chastity. ~Michel de Montaigne

Merited rebuke from an inferior has a double sting. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

To go wrong is sometimes the surest way to go right. It is not always down to depths: it is down, sometimes, to heights. I got my first perspective of heaven from hell. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Life, 1912

Old Satan couldn't get along without plenty of help. ~African-American saying

How, child, do I know where you're headed? Because I'm there, and I can see you coming. ~Robert Brault,

Sometimes we don't look up unless we have a reason to. And then it all becomes clear. ~Terri Guillemets

The crash of the whole solar and stellar systems could only kill you once. ~Thomas Carlyle

When a dog runs at you, whistle for him. ~Henry David Thoreau

Conscience gets a lot of credit that belongs to cold feet. ~Author Unknown

My endurance may be born of courage, but I will not forget that it may also be born of that most pitiable of human things, — weakness. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Life, 1912

Sometimes the littlest inquiries produce the biggest results. ~Terri Guillemets

The grass may be greener on the other side of the fence, but you still have to mow it. ~Author Unknown

And see, no longer blinded by our eyes. ~Rupert Brooke

Monotony is what is found by those who seek sensations. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1904, George Horace Lorimer, editor

For a nation which has an almost evil reputation for bustle, bustle, bustle, and rush, rush, rush, we spend an enormous amount of time standing around in line in front of windows, just waiting. ~Robert Benchley, Benchley — or Else!

Just remember that if you had the most winning personality on earth, you'd always wonder if people liked you only for your personality. ~Robert Brault,

I am the long ropes of steel, and I am the strands of blue moonlight — the strength and the beauty.
I am the violets, and I am the rocks — the kindness and the no-capitulation.
I come in the big recognition of little things, in the stupendous portent of a moment, the dynamics of a blade of grass.
~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), "Songs of the Strong: II," A Soul's Faring, 1921

...for there is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so. ~William Shakespeare, Hamlet, c.1600  [II, 2, Hamlet]

Life is not all Beer and Skittles. The inherent tragedy of things works itself out from white to black and blacker, and the poor things of a day look ruefully on. Does it shake my cast-iron faith? I cannot say it does. I believe in an ultimate decency of things; ay, and if I woke in hell, should still believe it. ~Robert Louis Stevenson, letter to Sidney Colvin, 1893 August 23rd

Credulity is the man's weakness, but the child's strength. ~Charles Lamb, Essays of Elia, Witches and other Night Fears, 1823

Destiny has two ways of crushing us — by refusing our wishes and by fulfilling them. ~Henri Frederic Amiel

The reverse side also has a reverse side. ~Japanese Proverb


'Tis distance lends enchantment to the view,
And robes the mountain in its azure hue.
~Thomas Campbell, Pleasures of Hope

He is the most popular plagiarist who improves most upon what he steals. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

At high tide the fish eat ants; at low tide the ants eat fish. ~Thai Proverb

It takes a while, but eventually we appreciate that the people who were always there for the special occasions of our youth had other things to do. ~Robert Brault,

Innocence most often is a good fortune and not a virtue. ~Anatole France

Without the aid of prejudice and custom, I should not be able to find my way across the room. ~William Hazlitt, Sketches and Essays, 1839

The knack of flying is learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss. ~Douglas Adams, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy

Each moment is a place you've never been. ~Mark Strand

There is but an inch of difference between the cushioned chamber and the padded cell. ~Gilbert Keith Chesterton

The long way around is the shortcut when everybody knows the shortcut. ~Robert Brault,

Now, what is it which makes a scene interesting? If you see a man coming through a doorway, it means nothing. If you see him coming through a window — that is at once interesting. ~Billy Wilder

Finish last in your league and they call you idiot. Finish last in medical school and they call you doctor. ~Abe Lemons

The wings of angels and devils are in all of us. ~Jakarat Chotdamorng, May 2011 entry to The Quote Garden create your own quote contest on Twitter

A hole is nothing at all, but you can still break your neck in it. ~Author Unknown

Everything's got a moral, if only you can find it. ~Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

To really enjoy the better things in life, one must first have experienced the things they are better than. ~Oscar Holmolka

There is nothing as easy as denouncing. It don't take much to see that something is wrong but it does take some eyesight to see what will put it right again. ~Will Rogers (1879–1935)

Perhaps there should be one day a week when you tackle your "Things I Gotta Undo" list. ~Robert Brault,

If the day ever comes when everything worth doing has been done, there will be plenty worth undoing. ~Robert Brault,

The stars, like many other things, are only romantic from a distance. ~Terri Guillemets

You know, not all Freudian slips are created equal. ~Rachel Maddow, 2009  [On George W. Bush saying "authoritarian" instead of "authoritative." —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

We may build a mountain in a day that a lifetime cannot remove. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897

When those waiters ask me if I want some fresh ground pepper, I ask if they have any aged pepper. ~Andy Rooney

I do love my friends who wouldn't dare judge me — but we all need to be judged, sometimes. ~Terri Guillemets, "Dissent," 2016

If we escape punishment for our vices, why should we complain if we are not rewarded for our virtues? ~John Churton Collins, Aphorisms in the English Review, 1914

We have them just where they want us. ~James T. Kirk

To every corner there is always more than one way out. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

Some men see things as they are and ask why. Others dream things that never were and ask why not. ~George Bernard Shaw

I never complained of the vicissitudes of fortune, nor suffered my face to be overcast at the revolution of the heavens, except once, when my feet were bare, and I had not the means of obtaining shoes. I came to the chief of Kfah in a state of much dejection, and saw there a man who had no feet. I returned thanks to God and acknowledged his mercies, and endured my want of shoes with patience, and exclaimed,
Roast fowl to him that's sated will seem less
Upon the board than leaves of garden cress.
While, in the sight of helpless poverty,
Boiled turnip will a roasted pullet be.
~Saʿdī, translated

Chaperons don't enforce morality; they force immorality to be discreet. ~Judith Martin

Winning is overrated. The only time it is really important is in surgery and war. ~Al McGuire

A woman who sells herself to buy bread for her aged mother or her child, stands upon a higher moral plane than the blushing maiden who marries a money bag, in order to gratify her frivolous appetite for parties and travel. Of two men, he is the less deceived, the more logical and rational, who pays his companion of an hour in cash, each time, than he who gets a companion for life by the marriage contract, whose society was purchased as much as in the former case. Every alliance between man and woman in which either one is influenced by the substantial or selfish advantage to be gained by it, is prostitution. ~Max Nordau, Conventional Lies of Our Civilization

Nothing is more desirable than to be released from an affliction, but nothing is more frightening than to be divested of a crutch. ~James Baldwin

Fortune is a centaur —
half man, half luck.
~Terri Guillemets, "Hoofprints," 2019

Helping others out of trouble generally helps the helper into trouble. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897

There's such a thin line between winning and losing. ~John R. Tunis

There are always three sides to every story: your side, the other side, and the truth. ~Author Unknown

In the life we might have lived, the years never pass. On the person we might have been, time never leaves its mark. How different would seem our might-have-beens if we could picture them as would-be-nows. ~Robert Brault,

Necessity is not an established fact, but an interpretation. ~Friedrich Nietzsche

It isn't the mountains ahead that wear you out, it's the grain of sand in your shoe. ~Author Unknown

Edible, adj.: Good to eat, and wholesome to digest, as a worm to a toad, a toad to a snake, a snake to a pig, a pig to a man, and a man to a worm. ~Ambrose Bierce

In the strict scientific sense we all feed on death — even vegetarians. ~Spock from Star Trek, "Wolf in the Fold"

Emotion has taught mankind to reason. ~Marquis de Vauvenargues

It is not easy, the choice between God and the devil, for it is presented to us as a choice between forgiveness and understanding. ~Robert Brault,

One man's frankness is another man's vulgarity. ~Kevin Smith

I don't see how an article of clothing can be indecent. A person, yes. ~Robert A. Heinlein

How many merits one sees in those one likes! how many faults in those one dislikes! Yet people fancy they see with their eyes. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827

Travelers never think that they are the foreigners. ~Mason Cooley

One man's quiet is another man's din. ~Terri Guillemets

If anyone were to be willing to trace his descent through an ape as his grandfather, would he be willing to trace his descent similarly on the side of his grandmother? ~Samuel Wilberforce

What is a promiscuous person? It is usually someone who is getting more sex than you are. ~Victor Lownes, Playboy, 1985

Every vice is only an exaggeration of a necessary and virtuous function. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson, Journals, 1836

A liberal is a conservative who's been arrested. A conservative is a liberal who's been mugged. ~Wendy Kaminer

I always thought a yard was three feet, then I started mowing the lawn. ~C.E. Cowman

When you are one of the pieces, it doesn't seem like a game. ~Robert Brault,

It is a curious subject of observation and inquiry, whether hatred and love be not the same thing at the bottom. Each, in its utmost development, supposes a high degree of intimacy and heart-knowledge; each renders one individual dependent for the food of his affections and spiritual life upon another; each leaves the passionate lover, or the no less passionate hater, forlorn and desolate by the withdrawal of his object. Philosophically considered, therefore, the two passions seem essentially the same, except that one happens to be seen in a celestial radiance and the other in a dusky and lurid glow. ~Nathaniel Hawthorne

It is not the man who has little, but he who desires more, that is poor. ~Seneca

Darkness is the thief's best accomplice. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

Where there is perhaps a province in which the photograph can tell us nothing more than what we see with our own eyes, there is another in which it proves to us how little our eyes permit us to see. ~Dorthea Lange

It is easier for me to see everything as one thing than to see one thing as one thing. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

We're all hookers. What matters is dignity. ~Mike Farren

A hen is only an egg's way of making another egg. ~Samuel Butler

There is only one pretty child in the world, and every mother has it. ~Author unknown

A sodomite got very excited looking at a zoology text. Does this make it pornography? ~Stanislaw J. Lec

When a guy goes to a hooker, he's not paying her for sex, he's paying her to leave. ~Author Unknown

They've got us surrounded again, the poor bastards. ~Creighton W. Abrams

Every exit is an entrance somewhere else. ~Tom Stoppard

A pedestal is as much a prison as any small space. ~Gloria Steinem

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