Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act, but a habit.
Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.
To speak ill of others is a dishonest way of praising ourselves. . . let us be above such transparent egotism.
How much more suffering is caused by the thought of death than by death itself.
Tolerance grows only when faith loses certainty; certainty is murderous.
Those who have suffered much become very bitter or very gentle.
Sixty years ago I knew everything; now I know nothing; education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.
A nation is born stoic, and dies epicurean
Forget mistakes. Forget failure. Forget everything except what you're going to do now and do it. Today is your lucky day
Civilization exists by geological consent, subject to change without notice.
The greatest question of our time is not communism vs. individualism, not Europe vs. America, not even the East vs. the West; it is whether men can bear to live without God.
When liberty exceeds intelligence, it begets chaos, which begets dictatorship.
Every science begins as philosophy and ends as art; it arises in hypothesis and flows into achievement.
So the story of man runs in a dreary circle, because he is not yet master of the earth that holds him.
The trouble with most people is that they think with their hopes or fears or wishes rather than with their minds.
Rome remained great as long as she had enemies who forced her to unity, vision, and heroism. When she had overcome them all she flourished for a moment and then began to die.
There have been only 268 of the past 3,421 years free of war.
History reports that the men who can manage men manage the men who can manage only things, and the men who can manage money manage all.
In philosophy, as in politics, the longest distance between two points is a straight line.
You can’t fool all the people all the time,” but you can fool enough of them to rule a large country.
In the end, nothing is lost. Every event, for good or evil, has effects forever.
Nature smiles at the union of freedom and equality in our utopias. For freedom and equality are sworn and everlasting enemies, and when one prevails the other dies.
History is an excellent teacher with few pupils.
In the last 3,421 years of recorded history only 268 have seen no war.
If we rated greatness by the influence of the great, we will say "Muhammad is the greatest of the great in history
[N]o language has ever had a word for a virgin man.
To rulers religion, like almost everything else, is a tool of power.
A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself within
The fear of capitalism has compelled socialism to widen freedom, and the fear of socialism has compelled capitalism to increase equality. East is West and West is East, and soon the twain will meet.
Read, think well of mankind, go to our libraries and rejoice.
By and large the poor have the same impulses as the rich, with only less opportunity or skill to implement them
The older Romans used temples as their banks, as we use banks as our temples;
One of the lessons of history is that the gods can be silent in many languages.
History is mostly guessing, the rest is prejudice.
We have here the fundamental problem of ethics, the crux of the theory of moral conduct. What is justice? -shall we seek righteousness, or shall we seek power? -is it better to be good, or to be strong?
When the universe has crushed him man will still be nobler than that which kills him, because he knows that he is dying, and of its victory the universe knows nothing.
Our knowledge is a receding mirage in an expanding desert of ignorance.
Nature has never read the Declaration of Independence. It continues to make us unequal.
The past is not dead. Indeed, it is often not even past.
Most history is guessing, and the rest is prejudice.
Morality, said Jesus, is kindness to the weak; morality, said Nietzsche, is the bravery of the strong; morality, says Plato, is the effective harmony of the whole.
The worst conceivable government would be by philosophers; they botch every natural process with theory; their ability to make speeches and multiply ideas is precisely the sign of their incapacity for action.
The present is the past rolled up for action, and the past is the present unrolled for understanding
But now and then liberty, in the slogans of the strong, means freedom from restraint in the exploitation of the weak.
But the new generation had tasted the wine of philosophy; and from this time onward the rich youth of Rome went eagerly to Athens and Rhodes to exchange their oldest faith for the newest doubts.
Truth always originates in a minority of one, and every custom begins as a broken precedent.
Facts" replaced understanding; and knowledge, split into a thousand isolated fragments, no longer generated wisdom.
The form of Christianity that developed in Europe and later spread to America and the rest of the world was the last great creation of the ancient pagan world.
This is the tragedy of almost every civilization—that its soul is in its faith, and seldom survives philosophy.
Philosophy begins when one learns to doubt—particularly to doubt one’s cherished beliefs, one’s dogmas and one’s axioms.
...but which of us has read every line of the Iliad, or the Aeneid, or The Divine Comedy, or Paradise Lost? Only men of epic stomach can digest these epic tales.
Nothing is impossible to gods and authors.
It is not the race that makes the civilization, it is the civilization that makes the people: circumstances geographical, economic, and political create a culture, and the culture creates a human type.
In its youth a people produce mythology and poetry; in its decadence, philosophy and logic.
Normally and generally men are judged by their ability to produce—except in war, when they are ranked according to their ability to destroy.
To say nothing, especially when speaking, is half the art of diplomacy.
When a man is interested in the past he writes history; when he is interested in the future he makes it.
Not to be occupied, and not to exist, amount to the same thing," he said. "All people are good except those who are idle.
If you look at a map of Europe you will observe that Greece is a skeleton-like hand stretching its crooked fingers out into the Mediterranean Sea.
To confer a kindness is a mark of superiority; to receive one is a mark of subordination . . .
But he had gained a perspective of thought in which every extreme was seen as a half-truth,
I thank God,” he used to say, “that I was born Greek and not barbarian, freeman and not slave, man and not woman; but above all, that I was born in the age of
For what is philosophy but an art - one more attempt to give "significant form" to the chaos of experience?
Progress is the domination of chaos by mind and purpose, of matter by form and will. It need not be continuous to be real.
There are not many things finer in our murderous species than this noble curiosity, this restless and reckless passion to understand.
Civilization exists by geologic consent, subject to change without notice.
Human behavior, says Plato, flows from three main sources: desire, emotion, and knowledge.
There is no real philosophy until the mind turns round and examines itself.
Economic development specializes functions, differentiates abilities, and makes men unequally valuable to their group.
A book is like a quarrel. One word leads to another, and may erupt in blood or print, irrevocably.
Coarse necessities of physical existence drag him from the heights of thought into the mart of economic strife and gain.
All science is a charted ignorance and belongs to Maya.
It was his motto that one lived best by the hidden life—bene vixit qui bene latuit.
The historian always oversimplifies, and hastily selects a manageable minority of facts and faces out of a crowd of souls and events whose multitudinous complexity he can never quite embrace or comprehend.
So the conservative who resists change is as valuable as the radical who proposes it—perhaps as much more valuable as roots are more vital than grafts.
And, after speech, it provided a readier instrument for the dissemination of nonsense than the world has ever known until our time.
Fear of death, wonder at the causes of chance events or unintelligible happenings, hope for divine aid and gratitude for good fortune, cooperated to generate religious belief.
If ideas do not determine history, inventions do; and inventions are determined by ideas.
In some way the god had to be appeased and satisfied; for his worshipers had made him in the image and dream of themselves, and he had no great regard for human life, or womanly tears.
The strong do what they can, and the weak suffer what they must.
I was only 44, which is childhood philosophy.
We must steel ourselves against utopias and be content with a slightly better state.
When a band of flute players attempted a musical concert at a triumph in 167, the audience forced the musicians to change their performance into a boxing match.15 In the widening middle classes commercialism
Peace is war by other means.
When Germany defeated Napoleon it was a disastrous to culture as when Luther defeated the Church.
Democritus (460-360 B.C.)— "in reality there is nothing but atoms and space.
By 1911 I found it impossible to continue my pretenses to orthodoxy;
[S]hame is a child of custom rather than of nature.
[W]orship, if not the child, is at least the brother, of fear.
Death like style is the removal of rubbish.
Let us trust to ourselves, see all with our own eyes; Let these be our oracles, our tripods and our gods.
He who leaves his home in search of knowledge walks in the path of God … and the ink of the scholar is holier than the blood of the martyr”;
A disintegrating individualism had weakened the Athenian character, and left the city a prey at last to the sternly-nurtured Spartans.
What I am not,” he says, most truthfully, “that for me is God
Radicalism is a luxury of stability; we may dare to change things only when things lie steady under our hands.
He is his own best friend, and takes delight in privacy whereas the man of no virtue or ability is his own worst enemy, and is afraid of solitude.59 Such
Animals eat one another without qualm; civilized men consume one another by due process of law. Co-operation
There his chief enterprises are reading and doing nothing.