The Quote Garden ™
I dig old books. ™
Love truth and fear not —
Do good and be happy.
~Simeon Carter (1824–1911), Poems and Aphorisms: A Woodman's Musings, 1893
Work in the invisible world at least as hard as you do in the visible. ~Rumi, as interpreted by Coleman Barks
It is possible to commit an act that doesn't reflect who you really are. It is harder to live a life that doesn't reflect who you really are. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Judge each day not by the harvest you reap but by the seeds you plant. ~William Arthur Ward, Thoughts of a Christian Optimist, 1968
Shall I spend my life pushing a boulder uphill so that once uphill I will have a boulder to sit on while lamenting my life? ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com, 2021
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 à Kempis, Imitation of Christ, c.1420
You've got a lot of choices. If getting out of bed in the morning is a chore and you're not smiling on a regular basis, try another choice. ~Steven D. Woodhull (U.S. geologist, b.1976), "Tuition," 1999
I don't want to talk about [our Lord's] divinity. I'd rather talk about his humanity... how he lived his life here on earth — his kindness, his tolerance. Listen, here's what I think. We can't go around measuring our goodness by what we don't do, by what we deny ourselves, what we resist, and who we exclude. I think we've got to measure goodness by what we embrace, what we create, and who we include. ~Robert Nelson Jacobs, Chocolat, 2000, based on the novel by Joanne Harris, 1999[Spoken by the character Père Henri. –tg]
In what you say of another, apply the test of kindness, necessity and truth, and let nothing pass your lips without a 2/3 majority. ~Liz Armbruster
Give thanks for what you are now, and keep fighting for what you want to be tomorrow. ~Fernanda Miramontes-Landeros, November 2009 winner of The Quote Garden create your own quote contest on Twitter, @quotegarden
You will turn over many a futile new leaf till you learn we must all write on scratched-out pages. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1963
If you surrender to the wind you can ride it. ~Toni Morrison, quoted in Laura B. Randolph, "The Magic of Toni Morrison," Ebony, July 1988
Never miss an opportunity to make others happy, even if you have to leave them alone in order to do it. ~Author unknown
Do not confuse your vested interests with ethics. Do not identify the enemies of your privilege with the enemies of humanity. ~Max Lerner, "Politics and the Connective Tissue," 1945
Laziness will cause you pain. ~Vee Arnis Jitsu School of Self-Defense
I think owning your burdens is half the battle. ~Scrubs, "My Catalyst," 2004, written by Bill Lawrence [S3, E12, J.D.]
Think not because the chrysalis struggles that it is in need of you. Oh! I pray you, stay your eager hands, lest you despoil its silver wings. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Prayer, 1904
Seek freedom and become captive of your desires. Seek discipline and find your liberty. ~Frank Herbert, Chapterhouse: Dune, 1985 (The Coda)
One neglect makes ten regrets. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897
A refusal to face reality allows it to stab you in the back. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer, lumpenbangenpiano.com
Always when judging
Who people are,
Remember to footnote
The words "So far."
~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
People cannot go wrong, if you don't let them. They cannot go right, unless you let them. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827
You have an influence. Choose well, for your choice is brief, yet endless. ~Charles F. Raymond, "There Is Nothing Common," Cheer Up, 1909
"If it ain't broke, don't fix it" — a reason to devote an occasional day to breaking everything. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
I have not been afraid of excess: excess on occasion is exhilarating. It prevents moderation from acquiring the deadening effect of a habit. ~W. Somerset Maugham, The Summing Up, 1938
The secret to happiness in your work is to find a job in which your neurosis is constructive. ~Jeanne LaMont, M.D.
I saw that he was dying. All the strength had left him. And I said Moe, "What will I do without you?" And he gathered up all the energy he could and he said, "Take the love you have for me and spread it around. In love spread around, there beauty is found." ~Shirley L. Hyman, Ph.D. (1913–2016), from 2014 video produced by Brandon Stanton for Humans of New York, www.humansofnewyork.com
"...Tell me how you have kept the joy
Still burning in your eyes."
Then, like an old-time orator,
Impressively he rose.
"I make the most of all that comes
And the least of all that goes."
The jingling rhythm of his words
Echoed as old songs do;
Yet this had kept his eyes alight
Till he was ninety-two.
~Sara Teasdale, "The Philosopher," 1916
If I had my life to live over, I'd have fewer meetings and more rendezvous. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Every one should keep a mental waste-paper basket and the older he grows the more things he will consign to it — torn up to irrecoverable tatters. ~Samuel Butler (1835–1902), Note-Books, selections arranged and edited by Henry Festing Jones (1851–1928)
Whatever we worship, short of God, is sure to be our undoing. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1963
Toss your dashed hopes not into a trash bin but into a drawer where you are likely to rummage some bright morning. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Be pleasant until ten o'clock in the morning and the rest of the day will take care of itself. ~Elbert Hubbard
Strive strenuously; live gently. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, as reprinted in Poor Richard Jr's Almanack, 1906
Keep on going ahead; let others look for footprints. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor
Every man ought to be above his position in the sense of being more than his position. To be king and nothing more, judge and nothing more, tallowe-handler and nothing more, is to allow the accident to swallow up the essence, and prove a miserable failure when measured by the true standard of human worth. A wise man would scorn to be like the tower of Pisa, leaning everlastingly one way; and as each special occupation has its own tendencies to narrowness, exclusiveness, and misconception, one continuous object of education should be to give scope and elbow-room in other directions. When governments, or societies, with imperial rescripts, acts of parliament, or conventionalities, hedge men round with directions and prohibitions, we rejoice in the brave spirits who manfully do what they are told not to do; and part of everybody's education should be a training to resist the slavery by which custom is always trying to enthrall the world. ~Henry James Slack (1818–1896), The Philosophy of Progress in Human Affairs, "Chapter XIII: Education," 1860
When you jump at conclusions, be sure they are there. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor
There is no cure for birth and death save to enjoy the interval. ~George Santayana
Those who seem to be fortunate are magnificent on the outside, but in their inward parts are on a par with all men. ~Menander (c.342–c.292 BCE), translated by Francis G. Allinson, 1921
Young men, be masters of yourselves. The world needs you. ~James E. Shepard (1875–1947), quoted in Mitchell Davis, One Hundred Choice Quotations by Prominent Men and Women of the Negro Race, 1917
Just remember, there's a right way and a wrong way to do everything and the wrong way is to keep trying to make everybody else do it the right way. ~M*A*S*H, Colonel Potter
If you don't understand the cause of the problem — your solution will become part of it. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer, lumpenbangenpiano.com
Begin, not from an imaginary past, to which you can never go back; not from an imaginary future which you have not reached. Begin from the present, with all its treasury of good—ay, and with all its treasury of evil. And, keeping the pathway unbroken from the past to the future, lead on to life, to larger life... upward, upward. ~Lyman Abbott, "Out of the Past," sermon preached in Appleton Chapel, Harvard College, Sunday evening, March 26, 1899
All you need are these: certainty of judgment in the present moment;
action for the common good in the present moment;
and an attitude of gratitude in the present moment for anything that comes your way.
~Marcus Aurelius (121–180 A.D.), Meditations, IX:6, a new translation by Stephen Hanselman, in The Daily Stoic: 366 Meditations on Wisdom, Perseverance, and the Art of Living by Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman, 2016
Don't look where you fall, but where you slipped. ~African proverb
What you believe is more important than what you possess. What you live is more lasting than what you profess. Whom you inspire is more significant than whom you impress. ~William Arthur Ward, Thoughts of a Christian Optimist, 1968
When a thoughtless or unkind word is spoken, best tune out. ~Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Practical life teaches us that people may differ and that both may be wrong: it also teaches us that people may differ and both be right. Anchor yourself fast in the latter faith, or the former will sweep your heart away. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827
All things by immortal power,
Near or far,
To each other are linkèd are,
That thou canst not stir a flower
Without troubling of a star...
~Francis Thompson (1859–1907), "The Mistress of Vision," c.1897
The things one most tries to hide are often the things most easily seen. ~Sleepy Hollow, "For the Triumph of Evil," 2013, teleplay by Jose Molina [S1, E3, Ichabod Crane to Abbie Mills]
Do not handicap your children by making their lives easy. ~Robert A. Heinlein (1907–1988)
Life is mostly froth and bubble,
Two things stand like stone—
Kindness in another's trouble,
Courage in your own.
~Adam Lindsay Gordon
When someone demands blind obedience, you'd be a fool not to peek. ~Jim Fiebig, as quoted in The Reader's Digest, 1981
The important thing is this: to be able at any moment to sacrifice that which we are for what we could become. ~Charles Du Bos, Approximations, 1922, translated from French
Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does. ~Author unknown
Every man should leave a monument behind him in the recollection of his own life by his neighbours. A good character is the best tombstone. Those who loved you, and were helped by you, will remember you when forget-me-nots are withered. Carve your name on hearts, and not on marble. ~C. H. Spurgeon, "Monuments," John Ploughman's Talk; or, Plain Advice for Plain People, 1868
All I know about time and space is that it never hurts to give someone a little more of each. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Enthusiasm is not measured by megaphones. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1904, George Horace Lorimer, editor
Give every man thine ear, but few thy voice;
Take each man's censure, but reserve thy judgment...
Neither a borrower nor a lender be;
For loan oft loses both itself and friend,
And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.
This above all — to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.
~William Shakespeare, Hamlet, c.1600 [I, 3, Polonius] [Love this about Polonius, by Francesco Lo Piccolo: "While he is a blowhard, and he does spout aphorisms that were, even in the sixteenth century, clichés, his clichés constitute sound advice and his observations prove themselves prophetic." He is also described as self-assured, cynical, self-centered, a flatterer, long-winded, sly, devious, false, shrewd, immoral, a sermoniser, meddling, political, arrogant, despicable, vain, hypocritical, manipulative, verbose, insincere, self-absorbed, a windbag, and a rambler of wisdom. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
Smart people do stupid things, but they don't do them again to make sure. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
How will you have your fun? With or without regrets? ~Will M. Cressy, 1922
You must make your own life, amongst the living — and whether you meet fair winds or foul, find your own way to harbor in the end. ~Philip Dunne & Joseph Mankiewicz, The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, 1947, spoken by the character Captain Daniel Gregg, film based on a 1945 novel by R. A. Dick (Josephine Leslie, 1898–1979)
Never trust the sense of a man who cannot talk nonsense. ~Charles Searle, Look Here!, 1885
The incurable ills are the imaginary ills. ~Marie Dubsky, Freifrau von Ebner-Eschenbach (1830–1916), translated by Mrs Annis Lee Wister, 1882
Four steps to achievement: Plan purposefully. Prepare prayerfully. Proceed positively. Pursue persistently. ~William Arthur Ward, For This One Hour, 1969
B hopeful, B happy, B cheerful, B kind,
B busy of body, B modest of mind,
B earnest, B truthful, B firm and B fair...
B watchful, B ready, B open, B frank,
B manly to all men, whatever B their rank;
B just and B generous, B honest, B wise...
B temperate, B steadfast, to anger B slow.
B thoughtful, B thankful, whate'er may B tide...
B pleasant, B patient, B fervent to all,
B best if you can, but B humble withal.
B prompt and B dutiful, still B polite;
B reverent, B quiet, and B sure and B right...
B grateful, B cautious of those who B tray.
B tender, B loving, B good and B nign,
B loved thou shalt B, and all else B thine.
~"A Swarm of Bees," The British Bee Journal, and Bee Keeper's Adviser, 1882
Give us grit. Give us grace. Give us gumption. ~Charles F. Raymond, "A Desire," Just Be Glad, 1907
Let your strongest muscle be the will. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897
Don't tell your secret to your friend and you'll not fear him when he turns into an enemy. ~Menander (c.342–c.292 BCE), translated by Francis G. Allinson, 1921
When you mark a letter "Please Burn This," mail it in the fireplace. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1906, George Horace Lorimer, editor
Fortitude is the mean between fear and rashness. ~Proverb
To divorce literature, science and the arts from the crafts, the industries and the professions is unthinkable. The dreamer needs the doer, the artist needs the artisan, the poet needs the planner, the scholar needs the statesman. The man with the telescopic eye, who sees so clearly the things of to-morrow, but trips over the threshold of to-day, needs the social myopic whose condition results from too close and too prolonged contact with the minute work of the world... The so-called practical men need theory, and the theorists need practise. The workers need uplift and the apostles of culture need contact with the earth. The people's university must meet all the needs of all the people. ~F. F. Wesbrook, 1913
If you keep rephrasing the question, it gradually becomes the answer. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
...time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time. ~Marthe Troly-Curtin, Phrynette Married, 1912 [Thank you, Garson O'Toole! quoteinvestigator.com —tg]
...Love all, trust a few,
Do wrong to none...
~William Shakespeare, All's Well That Ends Well, c.1602 [I, 1, Countess]
And if it's proud to have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and a touch that never hurts... she is proud. ~Charles Dickens, Our Mutual Friend, 1865
...we are human beings who can never be born enough...
~Ken Sekaquaptewa and Candy St. Jacques, Sahuaro, 1970, yearbook of the Associated Students of Arizona State University
Ever ask yourself what you would do if you had tomorrow to live over again? ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
We have a choice every day — to act on yesterday's good intentions or get an early start on tomorrow's regrets. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
In the dark land of To-morrow
I dwelt with pain and sorrow,
And I sighed for joys and blessings that escaped me as I ran;
And the darkness gathered round me,
For the morrow ever found me
Living in "what I ought to do," and not in what I can.
~James Allen, "To-morrow and To-day," Poems of Peace, 1907
As for me, I always assumed growing up happened automatically as you got older, but it's really something you have to choose to do. ~Scrubs, "My Inconvenient Truth," 2007, written by Debra Fordham [S7, E3, J.D.]
A reformed burglar is always the best detective. ~W. Somerset Maugham, Lady Frederick, 1907
The only way you may correct the bad things in your past is to add better things to your future. ~Shiloh Morrison
So often our greatest triumph is a willing surrender. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
The saddest five words in the English language are: I wish I would have. ~Ray M. Smythe, So You Decided To Teach, 2011
If you have to do it every day, for God's sake learn to do it well. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1963
Avoid membership in a body of persons pledged to only one side of anything. ~Henry Stanley Haskins, "Religion and Dogma," Meditations in Wall Street, 1940
Dare to be imperfect and one day there will tug at your sleeve a soulmate. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Ability never amounts to much until it acquires two more letters — stability. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor
You will receive the same vibration that you emit. ~Kim Russo
The human story does not always unfold like a mathematical calculation on the principle that two and two make four. Sometimes in life they make five or minus three; and sometimes the blackboard topples down in the middle of the sum and leaves the class in disorder and the pedagogue with a black eye. ~Winston Churchill
It's better to fight for something than against something. ~Author unknown
Strength will grow from the heart, blossom as results, and wither in others' hearts as seeds. ~Mikhael Dominico, September 2010 winner of The Quote Garden create your own quote contest on Twitter, @quotegarden
Life itself is a mixture of power and form, and will not bear the least excess of either. To finish the moment, to find the journey’s end in every step of the road, to live the greatest number of good hours, is wisdom. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
In cases of doubtful morality we usually ask ourselves if there is any harm in doing this; it might be better to ask, is there any harm in letting it alone. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor
Selfishness is the cause of more misery in the world than anything else except death. ~Thomas Clark Henley, A Handful of Paper Shavings, 1861
Blessed is he who has learned to admire but not envy, to follow but not imitate, to praise but not flatter, and to lead but not manipulate. ~William Arthur Ward (1921–1994)
Think of your faults the first part of the night when you are awake, and the faults of others the latter part of the night when you are asleep. ~Chinese proverb
Every wise man has a parachute of prudence attached to his balloon of enthusiasm. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor
A prayer today that cooler heads may prevail — and warmer hearts. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com, 2021
Never get so busy that you forget to feed your unicorn. ~Katrina Mayer, @katrinamayer, Instagram post, 2018
Do not fall before you are pushed. ~English proverb
Some luck lies in not getting what you thought you wanted but getting what you have, which once you have it you may be smart enough to see is what you would have wanted had you known. ~Garrison Keillor, Lake Wobegon Days, 1985, garrisonkeillor.com
May you always find exactly the right words to put bullies in their place — and enough strength in your knees to walk out with dignity. ~Pam Brown, To Someone Special, Wishing You Happiness, 2008, helenexley.com
Life isn't fair, at least on the micro level. Deal with it. But don't deal with it by making it more unfair to others. ~David C. Hill, hill-kleerup.org/blog
It is said that not all who wander are lost, which has always struck me as not getting the most out of wandering. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
...besides the noble art of getting things done, there is a nobler art of leaving things undone. ~Lin Yutang, The Importance of Living, 1937
If you must choose between a falsehood and a rudeness, choose the rudeness; if the choice lies between a falsehood and cruelty, choose the falsehood. ~Marie Dubsky, Freifrau von Ebner-Eschenbach (1830–1916), translated by Mrs Annis Lee Wister, 1882
Ruts are not made by the wheels of Destiny, but by the cart of Care... ~Kenneth Alfred Evelyn Alexander (c.1890–1953), "The One-Way Mind," in The New Zealand Railways Magazine, 1931 June 1st
Man, like the bridge, was designed to carry the load of the moment, not the combined weight of a year at once. ~William Arthur Ward, For This One Hour, 1969
Spencer Reid: I'm afraid of losing you. And it's not just because I love you. It's because I don't think I know who I am in this world if I'm not your son, if I'm not protecting you... It's who I am.
Diana Reid: No, no, you're so much more than that.
Spencer: But it's how I see myself. And it's not something that I've done consciously — it just is...
Diana: Well, who we are in the world changes — it's part of life.
Spencer: And intellectually, I know that. And I know I should move on — but I don't know how. I feel stuck...
Diana: You can't spend the rest of your life waiting... You have to move forward.
Diana: You just do it... You're an adult now.
Spencer: What does that mean?
Diana: Whatever you want it to mean. You get to choose. Come on, you can do this — it's time.
Spencer: I know.
~Criminal Minds, "Awakenings," 2020, written by Stephanie Sengupta [S15, E2]
The whole science of life — Avoid sowing the seeds of regret. ~Charles Searle, Look Here!, 1885
No one but an aviator has a right to look down on others. ~Elbert Hubbard
One tree is like another tree, but not too much. One tulip is like the next tulip, but not altogether. More or less like people — a general outline, then the stunning individual strokes. ~Mary Oliver, "Upstream," Blue Iris: Poems and Essays, 2004, maryoliver.com
The surest proof that a preventive measure is working is that you're starting to think it was unnecessary. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com, 2020 #MaskUp
We must go to the middle of a child's bunch of cherries to be sure of finding perfect fruit. The outer circles will show unripened halves, stabs of the robin's bill, and rain-cracks, so soon does the ambition of quantity deaden the nice conscience of quality. ~James Russell Lowell (1819–1891), "Nationality in Literature"
To be pure, something besides soap and hot water is required. It is downright hard work in the character... It is cheerfulness of spirit and good physical habits. ~Andrew Jackson Davis, The Genesis and Ethics of Conjugal Love, 1874
If I make of myself nothing, I shall expect not more than nothing's proper place and portion. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Life, 1912
The road to failure is full of ruts. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1906, George Horace Lorimer, editor
When "Why not do it?" barely outweighs "Why do it?" — don't do it. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1963
Sometimes you just have to bow to the absurd. ~Star Trek: The Next Generation, "Up the Long Ladder," Jean-Luc Picard, Stardate 42823.2
An important corollary to the Golden Rule is to leave others be as you would have them leave you be. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
It is fair to judge people and stained-glass windows only in their best light. ~William Arthur Ward (1921–1994)
No useful man has time to go back and rub out his unfortunate foot prints. ~Author unknown, from Dallas-Galveston News, c.1894
Live and Let Live, is the Rule of Common Justice, but if People will be Troublesome on the One hand, the Obligation is Discharg'd on the other. ~"A Flea and a Man," Fables of Æsop and other Eminent Mythologists: with Morals and Reflexions by Sir Roger L'Estrange, Kt., 1692
The subtle changes of Life and Death,
Love and joy, or pain and grieving,
A summer dream, an autumn breath,
The clasp of friends we are leaving,
Are mystic links in the endless chain
Of the infinite spheres of Being,
And hopes grow on that are early slain,
In realms beyond our dim seeing.
~Josephine Butterfield Walcott (1840–1906), "Beautiful Links," World of Song, 1878
To cure was the voice of the past; to prevent is the divine whisper of to-day. ~Kate Douglas Smith Wiggin Riggs, late 1800s
You only get one life, which makes it necessary, sometimes, to sacrifice the life you want for the life you really want. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Don't just prioritize your schedule, schedule your priorities. ~Anthony J. D'Angelo, The College Blue Book, 1995, collegiate-empowerment.org
Half the failures in life arise from pulling in the horse as he is leaping. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827
Everybody likes to hear it straight from the boss, even if you are going to get fired. ~Will Rogers (1879–1935)
It's illegal to bore people. ~Mo Siegel [I saw this quote in 2003 on a sign at Celestial Seasonings in Boulder, Colorado. Siegel is one of the company's founders. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
A man must have something to cling to. Without that he is as a pea vine sprawling in search of a trellis.... I was all asprawl, clinging to Beauty, which is a very restless trellis. ~E.B. White (1899–1985) [a little altered —ღ t.g.]
The best helping hand you will ever find is at the end of your own arm. ~Author unknown, c. 1940s
Put your future in good hands — your own. ~Mark Victor Hansen, Future Diary, 1980
Giving up doesn't always mean you are weak. Sometimes it means that you are strong enough to let go. ~Author unknown
There is great power in letting go, and there is great freedom in moving on. ~Author unknown
And do not forget the spaces. When earth's
Heaviness pulls hard, turn to the spaces.
Their breezes will brace us—and we shall know.
~Cave Outlaw, Fugitive Hour, 1950
The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone... Such words are the poisoned arrows which cruel Death shoots backward at us from the door of the sepulchre. How much more we might make of our family life, of our friendships, if every secret thought of love blossomed into a deed!... there are words and looks and little observances, thoughtfulnesses, watchful little attentions, which make it manifest, and there is scarce a family that might not be richer in heart-wealth for more of them...
We can make ourselves say the kind things that rise in our hearts and tremble on our lips, — do the gentle and helpful deeds which we long to do and shrink back from; and, little by little, it will grow easier, — the love spoken will bring back the answer of love, — the kind deed will bring back a kind deed in return, — till the hearts in the family circle, instead of being so many frozen, icy islands, shall be full of warm airs and echoing bird-voices, answering back and forth with a constant melody of love. ~Harriet Beecher Stowe, Little Foxes, or, The Little Failings which Mar Domestic Happiness, 1866
An ounce of example is worth a pound of advice. A pint of effort is worth a gallon of excuses. An inch of cooperation is worth a yard of complaints. ~William Arthur Ward, Thoughts of a Christian Optimist, 1968
The law of conservation of energy tells us we can't get something for nothing, but we refuse to believe it. ~Isaac Asimov
Beware of letting your comforts become means of pain; nor make yourself miserable for the sake of being happy. ~William Benton Clulow, Horæ Otiosæ, 1833, and Aphorisms and Reflections, 1843
Heatherlegh is the dearest doctor that ever was, and his invariable prescription to all his patients is, "lie low, go slow, and keep cool." ~Rudyard Kipling
You get out of a mirror what you put into it, and out of a scale what you put on it. ~Arnold H. Glasow (1905–1999)
Life is like riding a bicycle; we can keep from falling if we keep moving. Only a few trick-riders can stand still and not tumble. ~Author Unknown, c.1922
Courage is fire, bullying is smoke. ~Proverb
Wake up, do your best, sleep, repeat. ~Thingsweforget.blogspot.com, 2011
What you can't get out of, get into wholeheartedly. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1963
Strength will carry you through no matter how deep the valley... surrender to your strength. ~Gunda Fijnje-Nolan, September 2010 entry to The Quote Garden create your own quote contest on Twitter, @quotegarden
For all your days prepare,
And meet them ever alike:
When you are the anvil, bear—
When you are the hammer, strike.
~Edwin Markham, "Preparedness," Gates of Paradise and Other Poems, 1920
If you would be interesting, be interested... if you would be loved, be loveable; if you would be helped, be helpful. ~William Arthur Ward, Thoughts of a Christian Optimist, 1968
You don't have to have an opinion about everything, and if you do, not everyone has to know what it is. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
In spite of everything, keep sparkling. ~Dr. SunWolf, tweet, 2017, professorsunwolf.com
Let go or be dragged. ~Author unknown
...it takes something more than preponderance of numbers to win a battle... ~Burton E. Stevenson, A Guide to Biography for Young Readers: American — Men of Action, "Chapter VII: Great Soldiers," 1909
We must be willing to get rid of
the life we've planned, so as to have
the life that is waiting for us.
The only thing I need to take personally is my person. ~Karen Casey & Martha Vanceburg
Never force talent; let talent force you. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897
Simon: How do I fix this?
Dr. Perez: Sometimes trying to fix the problem is the problem.
~The Good Doctor, "Broken or Not," 2022, written by Jim Adler and Jeff Qiu [S6, E9]
The problem I find with material possessions is that their eyes don't light up when you walk through the front door. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com, 2021
In Time of Shipwreck make it still your Aim
To Save; let others wrangle Whom to Blame.
~Arthur Guiterman, "Of Perils," A Poet's Proverbs, 1924
I may be justifying my pockets of chaos, but I will always choose people over perfection and the heart over task and tidy. ~Betsy Cañas Garmon, @wildthyme, tweet, 2009, betsygarmon.com
What are the facts? Again and again and again — what are the facts? Shun wishful thinking, ignore divine revelation, forget what "the stars foretell," avoid opinion, care not what the neighbors think, never mind the unguessable "verdict of history" — what are the facts, and to how many decimal places?... Get the facts! ~Robert A. Heinlein, Time Enough for Love: The Lives of Lazarus Long, 1973
You do not see the river of tears because it lacks one tear of your own. ~Antonio Porchia (1886–1968), Voces, 1943–1966, translated from the Spanish by W.S. Merwin (1927–2019), c.1968
Do you want to be handsome? I'll tell you how. First, look well to your health. Eat regularly and simply, and take proper rest. Go to bed early. Be sure to go to bed with clean teeth. Breathe fresh air. Take regular baths. More than all else, in order to look well you must wake up the mind and soul. Think pleasant and noble thoughts. Talk with people who know something. Be often in the company of those who know more than you do. Arouse your spiritual nature; sometimes a plain face is really glorified with the love of God and of man which shines through it. Lastly, keep a strong and vigorous body by taking plenty of wholesome outdoor exercise, and do all the good you can. Why not begin to grow handsome today? ~Silas X. Floyd (1869–1923), "How to Be Handsome," Floyd's Flowers: or, Duty and Beauty for Colored Children, 1905 [Paraphrased. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
If you wish a general to be beaten, send him a ream full of instructions; if you wish him to succeed, give him a destination, and bid him conquer. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827
If you are good to this one and that one, this one and that one will say that you are good. If you are good to everyone, no one will say that you are good. ~Antonio Porchia (1886–1968), Voces, 1943–1966, translated from the Spanish by W.S. Merwin (1927–2019), c.1968
All a man's brains are not contained in his hat. All a man's power of judgment and decision is not in his skull. There are brains distributed all over his body — far more brain, in bulk, than can be found in his head. Not only this, but every cell of his body has a brain of its own. The body is all brain... About you is an aura which contains still finer brains and nerves than any in your head or body. And outside your aura are the still finer brains and nerves commonly called "God," which are yours for the asking. Or, rather, they are yours for the trusting. ~Elizabeth Jones Towne, Practical Methods for Self Development, 1904
Love — Duty — Truth — a threefold sanctity. ~May Sinclair (1863–1946), "George Eliot," c.1886
Don't be afraid to Dig Down. Things worth having are rarely found upon the surface. ~Minna Thomas Antrim (1861–1950), Don'ts for Bachelors and Old Maids, 1908
The body is composed of certain chemical combinations called matter, and if we have one well-demonstrated fact in this Metaphysical thought more than another it is that spirit is the antipode of matter, SPIRIT IS ALL. Matter is the antipode of Spirit and is nothing. ~Oliver C. Sabin, "The Final Judgment," 1900
Sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment... ~Rumi, translated by Edward Henry Whinfield
Cleverness is as a wind raising storms of pride
Be foolish, so that your heart may be at peace.
~Rumi, translated by Edward Henry Whinfield
Do not repair another man's fence until you have seen to your own. ~Masai proverb, quoted in A.C. Hollis, The Masai: Their Language and Folklore, 1905
We allow no man to shelter himself under the plea of insignificance. We deny that a man can be insignificant... There is not one of you whose actions do not operate on the actions of others — operate, we mean, in the way of example. He would be insignificant who could only destroy his own soul; but you are all, alas! of importance enough to help also to destroy the souls of others; and henceforwards we would have you remember, that whensoever you act, you act for a multitude... Ye live not for yourselves; ye cannot live for yourselves; a thousand fibres connect you with your fellow-men, and along those fibres, as along sympathetic threads, run your actions as causes, and return to you as effects. ~Henry Melvill, "Partaking in Other Men's Sins," 1855
The most valuable lesson man has learned from his dog is to kick a few blades of grass over it and move on. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
You want to run out in front, prepare to be tripped from behind. ~S.A. Sachs
Now and then it is a joy to have one's table red with wine and roses... ~Oscar Wilde
Occasionally it's good to tell a loved one exactly what you would tell them if they had just died in your arms. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Stay quiet; refuse nothing; flowers grow only because they tranquilly allow the sun's rays to reach them. You must do the same. ~Barbara Juliane, baroness von Krüdener (1764–1824) to Germaine de Staël, quoted in J. Christopher Herold, Mistress to an Age: A Life of Madame de Staël, 1958
Never, "for the sake of peace and quiet," deny your own experience or convictions. ~Dag Hammarskjöld, 1952, translated from the Swedish by Leif Sjöberg and W. H. Auden, Markings, 1964
The opposite of education is not ignorance but indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it's indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it's indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it's indifference. Because of indifference, one dies before one actually dies. ~Elie Wiesel, 1986
The hardest thing to remember, looking back, is what you were waiting for. ~Robert Brault, 2017, rbrault.blogspot.com
He who burns his bridges better be a darn good swimmer. ~Author unknown
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
Never trouble another for what you can do yourself. ~Thomas Jefferson, 1825
I learned this, at least, by my experiment; that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.... In proportion as he simplifies his life, the laws of the universe will appear less complex, and solitude will not be solitude, nor poverty poverty, nor weakness weakness. ~Henry David Thoreau
Don't do what you sincerely don't want to do. Never confuse movement with action. ~Ernest Hemingway, advice to Marlene Dietrich, quoted by A. E. Hotchner
Continue to act, to work with vigor, to play with vigor. But also learn to grow in power and happiness through closer contact with the higher realities, the spiritual imponderables, that hearten and energize as can nothing else. ~H. Addington Bruce, "Nourish Your Soul," Self-Development: A Handbook for the Ambitious, 1921
A philosopher runs on ahead of his troubles, while a foolish man lags behind in the shadow of his difficulties. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897
Every day is conquerable by its hours, and every hour by its minutes. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
For you have to work out your own problems,
And have to work hard every day;
You have got to hold on to the real thing;
Believe me, there's no other way!
~Gertrude Tooley Buckingham, "An Old Man's Advice to a Boy," 1940s
Use your energy for good and it will be replenished with more good energy, use you energy for bad and your energy will be drained. ~Mike Dolan, @HawaiianLife, tweet, 2009
It is good each day to remind yourself of what you most cherish in life and ask yourself what you did today to cherish it. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
When something defies description, let it. ~Arnold H. Glasow (1905–1999)
Avoid the luxury that becomes a necessity. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor
It is wisest, at times, to do nothing and explain it by saying nothing. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com, 2018
A bunny who waits for endless time and perfect conditions may never begin to hop. ღ The tastiest part of the carrot grows in darkness underground. ღ Let us give something, however small, for a small carrot is not small to the bunny who has none. ~Krista Lester, tweets from @BunnyBuddhism, www.bunnybuddhism.com
I've learned a vital lesson
Worth more than gems or gold;
I've learned from tribulations
To bend, but not to fold.
I've learned to keep on learning,
To exercise my mind
And search for hidden treasures
That beckon me to find.
I've learned to keep on caring
For those I'm prone to flee;
I've learned the art of sharing
With those who turn to me.
I've learned a bit of wisdom
Along life's rocky way,
This simple guide for living:
Be grateful for today.
~William Arthur Ward, "I've Learned"
Very little grows on jagged rock. Be ground. Be crumbled, so wildflowers will come up where you are. ~Rumi, as interpreted by Coleman Barks
...whatever you do, do it well, and then it will not be trumpery. ~George Mogridge (1787–1854), "On the Trumpery Bag," Old Humphrey's Observations, 1841
Why chase a hopeless dream? I dunno, maybe for the dream, maybe for the chase, maybe to meet another hopeless dreamer. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Things sweet to taste prove in digestion sour. ~William Shakespeare, Richard II, c.1595 [I, 3, John of Gaunt]
Be true to your word and your work and your friend... ~John Boyle O'Reilly, "Rules of the Road"
Lend, by your imperfections, self-esteem to others, and you will be invited everywhere. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Prize your health; prize your word; prize your reason! ~Elbert Hubbard, "Can You Afford It?", Cosmopolitan, May 1913
If one reads the ancients only, one is sure of always remaining modern. ~Marie Dubsky, Freifrau von Ebner-Eschenbach (1830–1916), translated by Mrs Annis Lee Wister, 1882
Never put off until to-morrow what you can do to-day is a pretty good rule, but it does not include saying unkind things and winding eight-day clocks. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor
It is not enough to be industrious; so are the ants. What are you industrious about? ~Henry David Thoreau, letter to H.G.O. Blake, 1857
There are as many ways of expression as there are moments in a day. ~Rose Wilder Lane, letter to Dorothy Thompson, 1928, edited by William V. Holtz
But work a year and sleep an hour,
and sleep a night and sing a day,
And take a little wine and love,
and when you feel religious—pray.
~Frederic Ridgely Torrence, The House of a Hundred Lights: A Psalm of Experience After Reading a Couplet of Bidpai, 1899
You wound and you will wound again. Because you wound and then you go away. You do not stay with the wound. ~Antonio Porchia (1886–1968), Voces, 1943–1966, translated from the Spanish by W.S. Merwin (1927–2019), c.1968
Being loved by all is little fun
Unless you're also loved by one.
~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Do not sacrifice a large good for a little evil. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)
...though there 's reason in things as nobody knows on, — that 's pretty much what I 've made out; though some folks are so wise, they 'll find you fifty reasons straight off, and all the while the real reason 's winking at 'em in the corner, and they niver see 't. ~George Eliot, Silas Marner: The Weaver of Raveloe, 1861
In the end the reason for anything is inseparable from the reason for everything. ~Robert Brault, 2012, rbrault.blogspot.com
The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away. ~Author unknown
Occasionally it's good to devote a day to something in your life that's perfect but needs a little attention to stay that way. ~Robert Brault, 2017, rbrault.blogspot.com
Everything is nothing, but afterwards. After having suffered everything. ~Antonio Porchia (1886–1968), Voces, 1943–1966, translated from the Spanish by W.S. Merwin (1927–2019), c.1968
Each thought that we think, each word that we say
Affect our tomorrows in some strange way.
Each task that we finish, if it's well done,
Prepares us to tackle a bigger one...
~William Arthur Ward, "Our Job," For This One Hour, 1969
I could not help laughing at the ease with which he explained his process of deduction. "When I hear you give your reasons," I remarked, "the thing always appears to me to be so ridiculously simple that I could easily do it myself, though at each successive instance of your reasoning I am baffled, until you explain your process. And yet I believe that my eyes are as good as yours."
"Quite so... You see, but you do not observe. The distinction is clear..." ~A. Conan Doyle, "Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: A Scandal in Bohemia," 1891
Sherlock Holmes pointed out that one might see, yet not observe. That's a basic cause of much human failure. ~Isaac Asimov
A good rule of thumb for establishing what's really important in your life is that you wouldn't trade it in on a new one. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
If you hate your lot but wouldn't trade it, it's not your lot you hate. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook, 1966, © Thomas Paine McLaughlin
Don't despise empiric truth. Lots of things work in practice for which the laboratory has never found proof. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)
Is bread the better for kneading? so is the heart. Knead it then by spiritual exercises; or God must knead it by afflictions. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827
Following straight lines shortens distances, and also life. ~Antonio Porchia (1886–1968), Voces, 1943–1966, translated from the Spanish by W.S. Merwin (1927–2019), c.1968
Trust not a Water strange to you
Nor sign a Paper not read through.
~Arthur Guiterman, "Of Caution," A Poet's Proverbs, 1924
The best way to predict your future is to create it. ~Author unknown, variant of "The future cannot be predicted, but futures can be invented" by Dennis Gabor, Inventing the Future, 1963, and "The best way to predict the future is to invent it" by Alan Kay, 1982 [Thanks, Garson O'Toole of quoteinvestigator.com! —tg]
You've got to do your own growing, no matter how tall your grandfather was. ~Irish proverb
Beware of a man of one book. ~English proverb
Do not exult over the misfortunes of your neighbors, for it is not easy to struggle against one's yoke-mate Fortune. ~Menander (c.342–c.292 BCE), translated by Francis G. Allinson, 1921
Sometimes we get so busy overcoming the obstacles in our path that we fail to ask the obvious question: "Why did I think this was a path?" ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
You cannot be anything if you want to be everything. But if you are content to be something, you may by analogy be many things. ~Israel Zangwill, The Principle of Nationalities, 1917
Do not be someone looking for [insert]. Be [insert] looking for someone.
Suggestions for [insert]:
—a helping hand
—a leg up
~Robert Brault, "You Be The Aphorist," rbrault.blogspot.com
Leaves are light, and useless, and idle, and wavering, and changeable; they even dance; and yet God in his wisdom has made them a part of oaks. And in so doing he has given us a lesson, not to deny the stout-heartedness within because we see the lightsomeness without. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827
Fear less, hope more; eat less, chew more; whine less, breathe more; talk less, say more; hate less, love more; and all good things are yours. ~Swedish proverb
You cannot corner the devil by argument; he will jump over your head or between your feet. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897
Before you "go up in the air" be sure to choose a soft spot. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1907, George Horace Lorimer, editor
When you lose, don't lose the lesson. ~Author unknown
...beware those who are quick to censor
they are afraid of what they do not know
beware those who seek constant crowds for
they are nothing alone...
but there is genius in their hatred
there is enough genius in their hatred to kill you...
they will attempt to destroy anything
that differs from their own
not being able to create art
they will not understand art...
~Charles Bukowski, "The Genius of the Crowd," as reprinted in The Roominghouse Madrigals: Early Selected Poems 1946–1966
...what counts can't be counted. ~Author unknown, c.1956 quoted in Political science in the United States of America: a trend report, UNESCO, see also "...not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted" by William Bruce Cameron, 1963, commonly attributed to Albert Einstein as "Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." [quoteinvestigator.com]
Dig the well before you are thirsty. ~Chinese proverb
Wish for nothing so much that you forget to make it come true. ~Jeb Dickerson, @JebDickerson
Anything can happen; this is the very rule of this universe! The best defence against this rule is this: Don't panic! ~Mehmet Murat ildan
Be kind to everyone on the way up; you'll meet the same people on the way down. ~Wilson Mizner
I plowed "Perhaps," I planted "If" therein.
And sadly harvested "It Might Have Been."
~Arthur Guiterman, "Of Slackness," A Poet's Proverbs, 1924
There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root... ~Henry David Thoreau, Walden, 1854
Sometimes the only way to take a really good look at yourself is through someone else's eyes. ~Scrubs, "My Nickname," 2001, written by Bill Lawrence [S1, E10, J.D.]
When you throw dirt, you lose ground. ~Texan proverb
Sometimes the best way to hold onto something is to let it go. ~Author unknown
It isn't what you know that counts, it's what you think of in time. ~Author unknown
The best things in life are not only free, they require less assembly. ~Robert Brault, 2012, rbrault.blogspot.com
That Hour was never thrown away,
Which, spent in Planning, saved a Day.
~Arthur Guiterman, "Of Doing," A Poet's Proverbs, 1924
A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. — 'Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.' — Is it so bad then to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Self-Reliance"
Follow the seasons. Follow your heart. Lead by example. Lead with love, alongside simplicity and courage, embracing duty, shunning fear. ~Terri Guillemets
Wanna fly, you got to give up the [$h¡t] that weighs you down. ~Toni Morrison, Song of Solomon, 1977
Nourish your body with good food. Nourish your mind with good books. Nourish your soul with good friends. ~Anthony J. D'Angelo, The College Blue Book, 1995, collegiate-empowerment.org
The loss of a thing affects us until we have lost it altogether. ~Antonio Porchia (1886–1968), Voces, 1943–1966, translated from the Spanish by W.S. Merwin (1927–2019), c.1968
Remedy it or welcome it: a wise man's only two choices. ~Terri Guillemets
To know the road ahead, ask those coming back. ~Chinese proverb
God is good, but never dance in a small boat. ~Irish saying
Where you find quality, you will find a craftsman, not a quality-control expert. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Rub her feet. ~Robert A. Heinlein (1907–1988)
Don't ever tell anybody anything. ~J. D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye, 1951
That, sir, is my business. ~George Payne Rainsford James, Henry Masterton, 1832
published 1998 Mar 18
revised 2020 Dec 31
last saved 2023 Feb 22