Conscience Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Conscience. Here they are! All 200 of them:

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Good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life.
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Mark Twain
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The Seven Social Sins are: Wealth without work. Pleasure without conscience. Knowledge without character. Commerce without morality. Science without humanity. Worship without sacrifice. Politics without principle. From a sermon given by Frederick Lewis Donaldson in Westminster Abbey, London, on March 20, 1925.
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Frederick Lewis Donaldson
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There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must take it because conscience tells him it is right.
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Martin Luther King Jr. (A Testament of Hope: The Essential Writings and Speeches)
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The one thing that doesn't abide by majority rule is a person's conscience.
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Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)
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Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.
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C.S. Lewis
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If all the world hated you and believed you wicked, while your own conscience approved of you and absolved you from guilt, you would not be without friends.
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Charlotte BrontΓ« (Jane Eyre)
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They're certainly entitled to think that, and they're entitled to full respect for their opinions... but before I can live with other folks I've got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn't abide by majority rule is a person's conscience.
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Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)
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I cannot and will not cut my conscience to fit this year's fashions.
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Lillian Hellman
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A clear conscience is the sure sign of a bad memory.
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Mark Twain
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We must come to see that the end we seek is a society at peace with itself, a society that can live with its conscience.
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Martin Luther King Jr.
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One is happy once one knows the necessary ingredients of happiness: simple tastes, a certain degree of courage, self denial to a point, love of work, and above all, a clear conscience.
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George Sand (Correspondance, 1812-1876, Volume 5)
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Conscience doth make cowards of us all.
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William Shakespeare (Hamlet)
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Your conscience is the measure of the honesty of your selfishness. Listen to it carefully.
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Richard Bach (Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah)
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You ask me what forces me to speak? a strange thing; my conscience.
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Victor Hugo (Les MisΓ©rables)
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What does your conscience say? β€” 'You should become the person you are'.
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Friedrich Nietzsche
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A man who has no conscience, no goodness, does not suffer.
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Khaled Hosseini (The Kite Runner)
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Wrong does not cease to be wrong because the majority share in it.
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Leo Tolstoy (A Confession)
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A quiet conscience makes one strong!
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Anne Frank (The Diary of a Young Girl)
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If a dog will not come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.
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Woodrow Wilson
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Don't aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one's personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one's surrender to a person other than oneself. Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it. I want you to listen to what your conscience commands you to do and go on to carry it out to the best of your knowledge. Then you will live to see that in the long-runβ€”in the long-run, I say!β€”success will follow you precisely because you had forgotten to think about it
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Viktor E. Frankl (Man's Search for Meaning)
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You are my courage, as I am your conscience," he whispered. "You are my heart---and I your compassion. We are neither of us whole, alone. Do ye not know that, Sassenach?
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Diana Gabaldon (Drums of Autumn (Outlander, #4))
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Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.
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C.S. Lewis
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It's your own conscience That is gonna remind you That it's your heart and nobody else's That is gonna judge.
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Bob Marley
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Before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.
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Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)
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Betrayal is common for men with no conscience.
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Toba Beta (My Ancestor Was an Ancient Astronaut)
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When will our consciences grow so tender that we will act to prevent human misery rather than avenge it?
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Eleanor Roosevelt
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Through pride we are ever deceiving ourselves. But deep down below the surface of the average conscience a still, small voice says to us, something is out of tune.
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C.G. Jung
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To be, or not to be: that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep; No more; and by a sleep to say we end The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks That flesh is heir to, 'tis a consummation Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep; To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub; For in that sleep of death what dreams may come When we have shuffled off this mortal coil, Must give us pause: there's the respect That makes calamity of so long life; For who would bear the whips and scorns of time, The oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely, The pangs of despised love, the law's delay, The insolence of office and the spurns That patient merit of the unworthy takes, When he himself might his quietus make With a bare bodkin? who would fardels bear, To grunt and sweat under a weary life, But that the dread of something after death, The undiscover'd country from whose bourn No traveller returns, puzzles the will And makes us rather bear those ills we have Than fly to others that we know not of? Thus conscience does make cowards of us all; And thus the native hue of resolution Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought, And enterprises of great pith and moment With this regard their currents turn awry, And lose the name of action.--Soft you now! The fair Ophelia! Nymph, in thy orisons Be all my sins remember'd!
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William Shakespeare (Hamlet)
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We can ignore even pleasure. But pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.
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C.S. Lewis (The Problem of Pain)
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The man who has a conscience suffers whilst acknowledging his sin. That is his punishment.
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Fyodor Dostoyevsky (Crime and Punishment)
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I love those who can smile in trouble, who can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. 'Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but they whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves their conduct, will pursue their principles unto death
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Leonardo da Vinci
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All I could think of was that the teachers must've found the illegal stash of candy I'd been selling out of my dorms room. Or maybe they'd realized I got my Essay on Tom Sawyer from the Internet without ever reading the book and now they were going to take away my grade. Or worse, they were going to make me read the book.
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Rick Riordan (The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #1))
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A liar, a thief, and utterly without conscience. But he'll keep to any deal you strike with him.
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Leigh Bardugo (Six of Crows (Six of Crows, #1))
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It's fear that makes us lose our conscience. It's also what transforms us into cowards.
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Marjane Satrapi (The Complete Persepolis (Persepolis, #1-4))
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Film as dream, film as music. No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls.
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Ingmar Bergman
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Give me the liberty to know, to utter, and to argue freely according to conscience, above all liberties.
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John Milton (Areopagitica)
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Welcome, O life! I go to encounter for the millionth time the reality of experience and to forge in the smithy of my soul the uncreated conscience of my race.
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James Joyce (A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man)
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On some positions, cowardice asks the question, is it expedient? And then expedience comes along and asks the question, is it politic? Vanity asks the question, is it popular? Conscience asks the question, is it right? There comes a time when one must take the position that is neither safe nor politic nor popular, but he must do it because conscience tells him it is right.
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Martin Luther King Jr.
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I do not believe anyone can be perfectly well, who has a brain and a heart
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
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Every man’s island, Jean Louise, every man’s watchman, is his conscience. There is no such thing as a collective conscious.
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Harper Lee (Go Set a Watchman)
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People that have trust issues only need to look in the mirror. There they will meet the one person that will betray them the most.
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Shannon L. Alder
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Character is doing what you don't want to do but know you should do.
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Joyce Meyer
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The surest way to work up a crusade in favor of some good cause is to promise people they will have a chance of maltreating someone. To be able to destroy with good conscience, to be able to behave badly and call your bad behavior 'righteous indignation' β€” this is the height of psychological luxury, the most delicious of moral treats.
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Aldous Huxley (Crome Yellow)
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Conscience is the inner voice that warns us somebody may be looking.
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H.L. Mencken (A Mencken Chrestomathy)
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It is by the goodness of god that in our country we have those 3 unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them.
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Mark Twain
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One is happy as a result of one's own efforts once one knows the necessary ingredients of happiness: simple tastes, a certain degree of courage, self denial to a point, love of work, and above all, a clear conscience.
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George Sand
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I suspect he's sweet on Sophie and doesn't like to see her work too hard.' Tessa was glad to hear it. She'd felt awful about her reaction to Sophie's scar, and the thought that Sophie had a male admirer - and a handsome one like that- eased her conscience slightly. 'Perhaps he's in love with Agatha', she said. 'I hope not. I intend to marry Agatha myself. She may be a thousand years old, but she makes an incomparable jam tart. Beauty fades, but cooking is eternal.
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Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1))
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If you tell a beautiful woman that she is beautiful, what have you given her? It's no more than a fact and it has cost you nothing. But if you tell an ugly woman that she is beautiful, you offer her the great homage of corrupting the concept of beauty. To love a woman for her virtues is meaningless. She's earned it, it's a payment, not a gift. But to love her for her vices is a real gift, unearned and undeserved. To love her for her vices is to defile all virtue for her sake - and that is a real tribute of love, because you sacrifice your conscience, your reason, your integrity and your invaluable self-esteem.
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Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)
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A Native American elder once described his own inner struggles in this manner: Inside of me there are two dogs. One of the dogs is mean and evil. The other dog is good. The mean dog fights the good dog all the time. When asked which dog wins, he reflected for a moment and replied, The one I feed the most.
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George Bernard Shaw
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[T]he infliction of cruelty with a good conscience is a delight to moralists. That is why they invented Hell.
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Bertrand Russell (Sceptical Essays)
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This is to assuage our conscience, darling" she would explain to Blanca. "But it doesn't help the poor. They don't need charity; they need justice.
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Isabel Allende (The House of the Spirits)
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An individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law
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Martin Luther King Jr.
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Violent, irrational, intolerant, allied to racism and tribalism and bigotry, invested in ignorance and hostile to free inquiry, contemptuous of women and coercive toward children: organized religion ought to have a great deal on its conscience.
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Christopher Hitchens (God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything)
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Listen to me, Frankenstein. You accuse me of murder; and yet you would, with a satisfied conscience, destroy your own creature. Oh, praise the eternal justice of man!
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Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (Frankenstein)
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...You can only subject people to anguish who have a conscience. You can only punish people who have hopes to frustrate or attachments to sever; who worry what you think of them. You can really only punish people who are already a little bit good.
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Lionel Shriver (We Need to Talk About Kevin)
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The older you get, the more you understand how your conscience works. The biggest and only critic lives in your perception of people's perception of you rather than people's perception of you.
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Criss Jami (Killosophy)
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This is what I know. Don't settle for 40, 50, or even 80 percent. A relationship-it shouldn't be too small or too tight or even a little scratchy. It shouldn't take up space in your closet out of guilty conscience or convenience or a moment of desire. Do you hear me? It shold be perfect for you. It should be lasting. Wait. wait for 100 percent.
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Deb Caletti (The Secret Life of Prince Charming)
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Let your conscience be your guide.
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Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love)
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Conscience is no more than the dead speaking to us.
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Jim Carroll
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Deep down, below the surface of the average man's conscience, he hears a voice whispering, "There is something not right," no matter how much his rightness is supported by public opinion or moral code.
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C.G. Jung
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You see things less clearly when you open your eyes too wide.
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Italo Svevo (Zeno's Conscience)
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It's funny: I always imagined when I was a kid that adults had some kind of inner toolbox full of shiny tools: the saw of discernment, the hammer of wisdom, the sandpaper of patience. But then when I grew up I found that life handed you these rusty bent old tools - friendships, prayer, conscience, honesty - and said 'do the best you can with these, they will have to do'. And mostly, against all odds, they do.
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Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
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Never do anything against conscience, even if the state demands it.
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Albert Einstein
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Just how destructive does a culinary preference have to be before we decide to eat something else? If contributing to the suffering of billions of animals that live miserable lives and (quite often) die in horrific ways isn't motivating, what would be? If being the number one contributor to the most serious threat facing the planet (global warming) isn't enough, what is? And if you are tempted to put off these questions of conscience, to say not now, then when?
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Jonathan Safran Foer (Eating Animals)
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The ultimate test of man's conscience may be his willingness to sacrifice something today for future generations whose words of thanks will not be heard.
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Gaylord Nelson
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No guilt is forgotten so long as the conscience still knows of it.
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Stefan Zweig (Beware of Pity)
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If other people do not understand our behaviorβ€”so what? Their request that we must only do what they understand is an attempt to dictate to us. If this is being "asocial" or "irrational" in their eyes, so be it. Mostly they resent our freedom and our courage to be ourselves. We owe nobody an explanation or an accounting, as long as our acts do not hurt or infringe on them. How many lives have been ruined by this need to "explain," which usually implies that the explanation be "understood," i.e. approved. Let your deeds be judged, and from your deeds, your real intentions, but know that a free person owes an explanation only to himselfβ€”to his reason and his conscienceβ€”and to the few who may have a justified claim for explanation.
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Erich Fromm (The Art of Being)
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Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire called conscience.
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George Washington (Rules of Civility And Other Writings & Speeches)
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Conscience and cowardice are really the same things, Basil. Conscience is the trade-name of the firm. That is all.
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Oscar Wilde (The Picture of Dorian Gray)
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Peace demands the most heroic labor and the most difficult sacrifice. It demands greater heroism than war. It demands greater fidelity to the truth and a much more perfect purity of conscience.
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Thomas Merton
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Evil is a point of view. We are immortal. And what we have before us are the rich feasts that conscience cannot appreciate and mortal men cannot know without regret. God kills, and so shall we; indiscriminately He takes the richest and the poorest, and so shall we; for no creatures under God are as we are, none so like Him as ourselves, dark angels not confined to the stinking limits of hell but wandering His earth and all its kingdoms.
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Anne Rice (Interview with the Vampire (The Vampire Chronicles, #1))
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I know my fate. One day my name will be associated with the memory of something tremendous β€” a crisis without equal on earth, the most profound collision of conscience, a decision that was conjured up against everything that had been believed, demanded, hallowed so far. I am no man, I am dynamite.
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Friedrich Nietzsche (Ecce Homo)
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If we train our conscience, it kisses us while it hurts
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Friedrich Nietzsche
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You might want to think twice before you try to use a man's conscience against him. It may turn out he doesn't have one.
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Brent Weeks (The Black Prism (Lightbringer, #1))
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The Play's the Thing, wherein I'll catch the conscience of the King.
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William Shakespeare (Hamlet)
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Forget conventionalisms; forget what the world thinks of you stepping out of your place; think your best thoughts, speak your best words, work your best works, looking to your own conscience for approval.
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Susan B. Anthony
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A guilty conscience needs to confess. A work of art is a confession.
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Albert Camus
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Luxury always comes at someone else’s expense. One of the many advantages of civilization is that one doesn’t generally have to see that, if one doesn’t wish. You’re free to enjoy its benefits without troubling your conscience.
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Ann Leckie (Ancillary Justice (Imperial Radch, #1))
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What is the purpose of life?...To be the eyes and ears and conscience of the Creator of the Universe, you fool!
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Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Breakfast of Champions)
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...legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.
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Thomas Jefferson (Letters of Thomas Jefferson)
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There is nothing more alluring to man than freedom of conscience, but neither is there anything more agonizing.
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Fyodor Dostoyevsky (The Brothers Karamazov)
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Killing a man should be harder than waving a length of pipe in their direction. It should take long enough for one's conscience to get in the way.
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Hugh Howey (The Unraveling (Wool, #4))
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The vague and tenuous hope that God is too kind to punish the ungodly has become a deadly opiate for the consciences of millions.
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A.W. Tozer
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The torture of a bad conscience is the hell of a living soul.
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John Calvin
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Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be "cured" against one's will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.
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C.S. Lewis (God in the Dock: Essays on Theology (Making of Modern Theology) (ABRIDGED))
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Anybody can be charming if they don't mind faking it, saying all the stupid, obvious, nauseating things that a conscience keeps most people from saying. Happily, I don't have a conscience. I say them.
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Jeff Lindsay (Darkly Dreaming Dexter (Dexter, #1))
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My people are going to learn the principles of democracy the dictates of truth and the teachings of science. Superstition must go. Let them worship as they will, every man can follow his own conscience provided it does not interfere with sane reason or bid him act against the liberty of his fellow men.
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Mustafa Kemal AtatΓΌrk
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A bad conscience is easier to cope with than a bad reputation.
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Friedrich Nietzsche (The Gay Science)
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I wanted my own words. But the ones I use have been dragged through I don't know how many consciences.
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Jean-Paul Sartre (The Wall)
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I cannot choose but adhere to the word of God, which has possession of my conscience; nor can I possibly, nor will I even make any recantation, since it is neither safe nor honest to act contrary to conscience! Here I stand; I cannot do otherwise, so help me God! Amen.
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Martin Luther
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I am not so naΓ―ve as to believe that this slim volume will change the course of history or shake the conscience of the world. Books no longer have the power they once did. Those who kept silent yesterday will remain silent tomorrow.
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Elie Wiesel (Night (The Night Trilogy, #1))
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It is not because men's desires are strong that they act ill; it is because their consciences are weak.
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John Stuart Mill (On Liberty)
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I envy you your peace of mind, your clean conscience, your unpolluted memory. Little girl, a memory without blot of contamination must be an exquisite treasure-an inexhaustible source of pure refreshment: is it not?
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Charlotte BrontΓ« (Jane Eyre)
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The best thing you can do for your fellow, next to rousing his conscience, is β€” not to give him things to think about, but to wake things up that are in him; or say, to make him think things for himself.
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George MacDonald (A Dish of Orts)
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There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must take it because his conscience tells him it is right....
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Martin Luther King Jr.
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That's interesting," Bitterblue said. "You think a conscience requires fear?
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Kristin Cashore (Bitterblue (Graceling Realm, #3))
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There is no witness so dreadful, no accuser so terrible as the conscience that dwells in the heart of every man.
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Polybius
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The shape of my life is, of course, determined by many things; my background and childhood, my mind and its education, my conscience and its pressures, my heart and its desires.
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Anne Morrow Lindbergh (Gift from the Sea)
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I have a huge and savage conscience that won't let me get away with things.
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Octavia E. Butler
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Peace, though beloved of our Lord, is a cardinal virtue only if your neighbors share your conscience.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Wide differences of opinion in matters of religious, political, and social belief must exist if conscience and intellect alike are not to be stunted, if there is to be room for healthy growth.
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Theodore Roosevelt (The Man In The Arena: Speeches and Essays by Theodore Roosevelt)
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There is always the temptation in life to diddle around making itsy-bitsy friends and meals and journeys for years on end. It is all so self conscience, so apparently moral...But I won't have it. The world is wilder than that in all directions, more dangerous...more extravagant and bright. We are...raising tomatoes when we should be raising Cain, or Lazarus.
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Annie Dillard
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As the voice of their priests chanting, 'In Racism we Trust' and their applause gets louder, I find myself in a limbo of conscience, out of my depth, just an exhausted heretic, in a purgatory, yet denying submission.
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Asaad Almohammad (An Ishmael of Syria)
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Writer’s block results from too much head. Cut off your head. Pegasus, poetry, was born of Medusa when her head was cut off. You have to be reckless when writing. Be as crazy as your conscience allows.
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Joseph Campbell (A Joseph Campbell Companion: Reflections on the Art of Living)
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Sometimes a woman's love of being loved gets the better of her conscience, and though she is agonized at the thought of treating a man cruelly, she encourages him to love her while she doesn't love him at all. Then, when she sees him suffering, her remorse sets in, and she does what she can to repair the wrong.
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Thomas Hardy (Jude the Obscure)
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In matters of conscience, the law of the majority has no place.
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Mahatma Gandhi (Anthropology of Morality in Melanesia and Beyond, The. Anthropology and Cultural History in Asia and the Indo-Pacific.)
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Science without conscience is the soul's perdition.
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François Rabelais (Pantagruel)
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You are only as invincible as your smallest weakness, and those are tiny indeed - the length of a sleeping baby's eyelash, the span of a child's hand. Life turns on a dime, and - it turns out - so does one's conscience.
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Jodi Picoult (Perfect Match)
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Have courage and do not fear the assaults of the Devil. Remember this forever; it is a healthy sign if the devil shouts and roars around your conscience, since this shows that he is not inside your will.
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Padre Pio
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Confusing monogamy with morality has done more to destroy the conscience of the human race than any other error.
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George Bernard Shaw
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I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. 'Tis the business of little minds to shrink; but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death.
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Thomas Paine
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You’ll have to be my conscience.” He knew his flaws, and he knew the parts of him that were irrevocably broken. β€œMine isn’t going to grow back.
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Nalini Singh (Heart of Obsidian (Psy-Changeling, #12))
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Conversation between a princess and an outlaw: "If I stand for fairy-tale balls and dragon bait--dragon bait--what do you stand for?" "Me? I stand for uncertainty, insecurity, bad taste, fun, and things that go boom in the night." "Franky, it seems to me that you've turned yourself into a stereotype." "You may be right. I don't care. As any car freak will tell you, the old models are the most beautiful, even if they aren't the most efficient. People who sacrifice beauty for efficiency get what they deserve." "Well, you may get off on being a beautiful stereotype, regardless of the social consequences, but my conscience won't allow it." "And I goddamn refuse to be dragon bait. I'm as capable of rescuing you as you are of rescuing me." "I'm an outlaw, not a hero. I never intended to rescue you. We're our own dragons as well as our own heroes, and we have to rescue ourselves from ourselves.
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Tom Robbins (Still Life with Woodpecker)
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Apparently, I’ve grown a conscience. I don’t know when it happened. I don’t know how it happened, but I’m not happy about it. If I could, I would squash that Jiminy Cricket fucker like the roach he is.
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Emma Chase (Tangled (Tangled, #1))
β€œ
To a man born without conscience, a soul-stricken man must seem ridiculous. To a criminal, honesty is foolish. You must not forget that a monster is only a variation, and that to a monster the norm is monstrous.
”
”
John Steinbeck (East of Eden)
β€œ
Courage is an inner resolution to go forward despite obstacles; Cowardice is submissive surrender to circumstances. Courage breeds creativity; Cowardice represses fear and is mastered by it. Cowardice asks the question, is it safe? Expediency ask the question, is it politic? Vanity asks the question, is it popular? But conscience ask the question, is it right? And there comes a time when we must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but one must take it because it is right.
”
”
Martin Luther King Jr.
β€œ
Virtue is more to be feared than vice, because its excesses are not subject to the regulation of conscience.
”
”
Adam Smith
β€œ
People who have a religion should be glad, for not everyone has the gift of believing in heavenly things. You don't necessarily even have to be afraid of punishment after death; purgatory, hell, and heaven are things that a lot of people can't accept, but still a religion, it doesn't matter which, keeps a person on the right path. It isn't the fear of God but the upholding of one's own honor and conscience. How noble and good everyone could be if, every evening before falling asleep, they were to recall to their minds the events of the while day and consider exactly what has been good and bad. Then, without realizing it you try to improve yourself at the start of each new day; of course, you achieve quite a lot in the course of time. Anyone can do this, it costs nothing and is certainly very helpful. Whoever doesn't know it must learn and find by experience that: "A quiet conscience mades one strong!
”
”
Anne Frank (The Diary of a Young Girl)
β€œ
And the greatest tragedy of our age is we don't listen to our consciences. We don't say what we think. We feel one thing and do another.
”
”
Vasily Grossman (Life and Fate)
β€œ
Whenever the devil harasses you, seek the company of men or drink more, or joke and talk nonsense, or do some other merry thing. Sometimes we must drink more, sport, recreate ourselves, and even sin a little to spite the devil, so that we leave him no place for troubling our consciences with trifles. We are conquered if we try too conscientiously not to sin at all. So when the devil says to you: do not drink, answer him: I will drink, and right freely, just because you tell me not to.
”
”
Martin Luther
β€œ
I was most happy when pen and paper were taken from me and I was forbidden from doing anything. I had no anxiety about doing nothing by my own fault, my conscience was clear, and I was happy. This was when I was in prison.
”
”
Daniil Kharms (Today I Wrote Nothing: The Selected Writings)
β€œ
Quick question. Does this magical skill with gray matter come with a total lack of compunction for your kind, or is it just you who were born without a conscience? V: I beg your pardon?
”
”
J.R. Ward (Lover Unbound (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #5))
β€œ
Dr. King's policy was that nonviolence would achieve the gains for black people in the United States. His major assumption was that if you are nonviolent, if you suffer, your opponent will see your suffering and will be moved to change his heart. That's very good. He only made one fallacious assumption: In order for nonviolence to work, your opponent must have a conscience. The United States has none.
”
”
Stokely Carmichael
β€œ
It is the business of the very few to be independent; it is a privilege of the strong. And whoever attempts it, even with the best right, but without being OBLIGED to do so, proves that he is probably not only strong, but also daring beyond measure. He enters into a labyrinth, he multiplies a thousandfold the dangers which life in itself already brings with it; not the least of which is that no one can see how and where he loses his way, becomes isolated, and is torn piecemeal by some minotaur of conscience. Supposing such a one comes to grief, it is so far from the comprehension of men that they neither feel it, nor sympathize with it. And he cannot any longer go back! He cannot even go back again to the sympathy of men!
”
”
Friedrich Nietzsche (Beyond Good and Evil)
β€œ
Whatever weakens your reason, impairs the tenderness of your conscience, obscures your sense of God, takes off your relish for spiritual things, whatever increases the authority of the body over the mind, that thing is sin to you, however innocent it may seem in itself.
”
”
Susanna Wesley
β€œ
The only tyrant I accept in this world is the 'still small voice' within me. And even though I have to face the prospect of being a minority of one, I humbly believe I have the courage to be in such a hopeless minority.
”
”
Mahatma Gandhi (The Essential Gandhi: An Anthology of His Writings on His Life, Work, and Ideas)
β€œ
I have a different idea of elegance. I don't dress like a fop, it's true, but my moral grooming is impeccable. I never appear in public with a soiled conscience, a tarnished honor, threadbare scruples, or an insult that I haven't washed away. I'm always immaculately clean, adorned with independence and frankness. I may not cut a stylish figure, but I hold my soul erect. I wear my deeds as ribbons, my wit is sharper then the finest mustache, and when I walk among men I make truths ring like spurs.
”
”
Edmond Rostand (Cyrano de Bergerac)
β€œ
How good one feels when one is full -- how satisfied with ourselves and with the world! People who have tried it, tell me that a clear conscience makes you very happy and contented; but a full stomach does the business quite as well, and is cheaper, and more easily obtained.
”
”
Jerome K. Jerome (Three Men in a Boat (Three Men, #1))
β€œ
I was once reproved by a minister who was driving a poor beast to some meeting-house horse-sheds among the hills of New Hampshire, because I was bending my steps to a mountain-top on the Sabbath, instead of a church, when I would have gone farther than he to hear a true word spoken on that or any day. He declared that I was 'breaking the Lord's fourth commandment,' and proceeded to enumerate, in a sepulchral tone, the disasters which had befallen him whenever he had done any ordinary work on the Sabbath. He really thought that a god was on the watch to trip up those men who followed any secular work on this day, and did not see that it was the evil conscience of the workers that did it. The country is full of this superstition, so that when one enters a village, the church, not only really but from association, is the ugliest looking building in it, because it is the one in which human nature stoops the lowest and is most disgraced. Certainly, such temples as these shall erelong cease to deform the landscape. There are few things more disheartening and disgusting than when you are walking the streets of a strange village on the Sabbath, to hear a preacher shouting like a boatswain in a gale of wind, and thus harshly profaning the quiet atmosphere of the day.
”
”
Henry David Thoreau (A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (Writings of Henry D. Thoreau))
β€œ
I do not pretend to understand the moral universe; the arc is a long one, my eye reaches but little ways; I cannot calculate the curve and complete the figure by the experience of sight, I can divine it by conscience. And from what I see I am sure it bends towards justice.
”
”
Theodore Parker (The present aspect of slavery in America and the immediate duty of the North: a speech delivered in the hall of the State house, before the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Convention, on Friday night, January 29, 1858)
β€œ
I should love to satisfy all, if I possibly can; but in trying to satisfy all, I may be able to satisfy none. I have, therefore, arrived at the conclusion that the best course is to satisfy one’s own conscience and leave the world to form its own judgment, favorable or otherwise.
”
”
Mahatma Gandhi
β€œ
The finest thing under the sun and moon is the human soul. I marvel at the small miracles of kindness that pass between humans, I marvel at the growth of conscience, at the persistence of reason in the face of all superstition or despair. I marvel at human endurance.
”
”
Anne Rice (Pandora (New Tales of the Vampires, #1))
β€œ
Atticus, you must be wrong." "How's that?" "Well, most folks seem to think they're right and you're wrong. . ." "They're certainly entitled to think that, and they're entitled to full respect for their opinions," said Atticus, "but before I can live with other folks I've got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn't abide by majority rule is a person's conscience.
”
”
Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)
β€œ
Evil turned out not to be a grand thing. Not sneering Emperors with their world-conquering designs. Not cackling demons plotting in the darkness beyond the world. It was small men with their small acts and their small reasons. It was selfishness and carelessness and waste. It was bad luck, incompetence, and stupidity. It was violence divorced from conscience or consequence. It was high ideals, even, and low methods.
”
”
Joe Abercrombie (Red Country (First Law World, #6))
β€œ
When we want to help the poor, we usually offer them charity. Most often we use charity to avoid recognizing the problem and finding the solution for it. Charity becomes a way to shrug off our responsibility. But charity is no solution to poverty. Charity only perpetuates poverty by taking the initiative away from the poor. Charity allows us to go ahead with our own lives without worrying about the lives of the poor. Charity appeases our consciences.
”
”
Muhammad Yunus (Banker to the Poor: Micro-Lending and the Battle Against World Poverty)
β€œ
Just as there are physical monsters, can there not be mental or psychic monsters born? The face and body may be perfect, but if a twisted gene or malformed egg can produce physical monsters, may not the same process produce a malformed soul? Monsters are variations from the accepted normal to a greater or a less degree. As a child may be born without an arm, so one may be born without kindness or the potential of conscience. A man who loses his arms in an accident has a great struggle to adjust himself to the lack, but one born without arms suffers only from people who find him strange. Having never had arms, he cannot miss them. To a monster the norm must seem monstrous, since everyone is normal to himself. To the inner monster it must be even more obscure, since he has no visible thing to compare with others. To a criminal, honesty is foolish. You must not forget that a monster is only a variation, and that to a monster the norm is monstrous.
”
”
John Steinbeck (East of Eden)
β€œ
What one thinks is right is not always the same as what others think is right; no one can be always right.
”
”
Roy T. Bennett
β€œ
Death, of course, is a refuge. It's where you go when a new name, or a mask and cape, can no longer hide you from yourself. It's where you run to when none of the principalities of your conscience will grant you asylum.
”
”
Chris Cleave (Little Bee)
β€œ
…there is an idea of a Patrick Bateman, some kind of abstraction, but there is no real me, only an entity, something illusory, and though I can hide my cold gaze and you can shake my hand and feel flesh gripping yours and maybe you can even sense our lifestyles are probably comparable: I simply am not there. It is hard for me to make sense on any given level. Myself is fabricated, an aberration. I am a noncontingent human being. My personality is sketchy and unformed, my heartlessness goes deep and is persistent. My conscience, my pity, my hopes disappeared a long time ago (probably at Harvard) if they ever did exist. There are no more barriers to cross. All I have in common with the uncontrollable and the insane, the vicious and the evil, all the mayhem I have caused and my utter indifference toward it, I have now surpassed. I still, though, hold on to one single bleak truth: no one is safe, nothing is redeemed. Yet I am blameless. Each model of human behavior must be assumed to have some validity. Is evil something you are? Or is it something you do? My pain is constant and sharp and I do not hope for a better world for anyone. In fact, I want my pain to be inflicted on others. I want no one to escape. But even after admitting thisβ€”and I have countless times, in just about every act I’ve committedβ€”and coming face-to-face with these truths, there is no catharsis. I gain no deeper knowledge about myself, no new understanding can be extracted from my telling. There has been no reason for me to tell you any of this. This confession has meant nothing….
”
”
Bret Easton Ellis (American Psycho)
β€œ
There was a sentence in your letter that struck me, β€œI wish I were far away from everything, I am the cause of all, and bring only sorrow to everybody, I alone have brought all this misery on myself and others.” These words struck me because that same feeling, just the same, not more nor less, is also on my conscience.
”
”
Vincent van Gogh (Dear Theo)
β€œ
Friends don't let friends drive drunk." "Are you trying to appeal to my conscience?" "How can you turn down a once-in-a-lifetime chance to drive the 'Stang?" "How about you sell me the 'Stang for thirty dollars? I can even pay cash." "Drunk, but not that drunk, Grey.
”
”
Becca Fitzpatrick (Crescendo (Hush, Hush, #2))
β€œ
And then I laugh, because it's so ridiculous and so gorgeous and it's all I an do to not melt into a fit of giggles. So what if I'm ninety-three? So what if I'm ancient and cranky and my body's a wreck? If they're willing to accept me and my guilty conscience, why the hell shouldn't I run away with the circus? It's like Charlie told the cop. For this old man, this IS home.
”
”
Sara Gruen
β€œ
Feel what it's like to truly starve, and I guarantee that you'll forever think twice before wasting food.
”
”
Criss Jami (Killosophy)
β€œ
A part of a healthy conscience is being able to confront consciencelessness. When you teach your daughter, explicitly or by passive rejection, that she must ignore her outrage, that she must be kind and accepting to the point of not defending herself or other people, that she must not rock the boat for any reason, you are NOT strengthening her prosocial sense, you are damaging it--and the first person she will stop protecting is herself.
”
”
Martha Stout (The Sociopath Next Door)
β€œ
It is difficult to see ourselves as we are. Sometimes we are fortunate enough to have good friends, lovers or others who will do us the good service of telling us the truth about ourselves. When we don't, we can so easily delude ourselves, lose a sense of truth about ourselves, and our conscience loses power and purpose. Mostly, we tell ourselves what we would like to hear. We lose our way.
”
”
Jon Katz
β€œ
Laziness and cowardice are the reasons why so great a portion of mankind, after nature has long since discharged them from external direction (naturaliter maiorennes), nevertheless remains under lifelong tutelage, and why it is so easy for others to set themselves up as their guardians. It is so easy not to be of age. If I have a book which understands for me, a pastor who has a conscience for me, a physician who decides my diet, and so forth, I need not trouble myself. I need not think, if I can only pay - others will easily undertake the irksome work for me. That the step to competence is held to be very dangerous by the far greater portion of mankind...
”
”
Immanuel Kant (An Answer to the Question: What Is Enlightenment? (Great Ideas))
β€œ
I am glad it cannot happen twice, the fever of first love. For it is a fever, and a burden, too, whatever the poets may say. They are not brave, the days when we are twenty-one. They are full of little cowardices, little fears without foundation, and one is so easily bruised, so swiftly wounded, one falls to the first barbed word. To-day, wrapped in the complacent armour of approaching middle age, the infinitesimal pricks of day by day brush one but lightly and are soon forgotten, but then--how a careless word would linger, becoming a fiery stigma, and how a look, a glance over a shoulder, branded themselves as things eternal. A denial heralded the thrice crowing of a cock, and an insincerity was like the kiss of Judas. The adult mind can lie with untroubled conscience and a gay composure, but in those days even a small deception scoured the tongue, lashing one against the stake itself.
”
”
Daphne du Maurier (Rebecca)
β€œ
Many Introverts are also "highly sensitive," which sounds poetic, but is actually a technical term in psychology. If you are a sensitive sort, then you're more apt than the average person to feel pleasantly overwhelmed by Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" or a well-turned phrase or an act of extraordinary kindness. You may be quicker than others to feel sickened by violence and ugliness, and you likely have a very strong conscience.
”
”
Susan Cain (Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking)
β€œ
What would it be like if I had something to defend - a home, a country, a family - and I found myself attacked by these ghostly men, these trusting boys? How do you fight an enemy who fights with neither enmity nor anger but in submission to orders from superiors, without protest and without conscience?
”
”
Amitav Ghosh (The Glass Palace)
β€œ
...our souls may be consumed by shadows, but that doesn't mean we have to behave as monsters.
”
”
Emm Cole (The Short Life of Sparrows)
β€œ
As a citizen of the world, it’s my instinct to keep the fallen and the suffering in my thoughts. The human brain fascinates me; its limitless bounds of empathy. You see, in my mind there is logic to it: do no harm, prevent harm, help, support, care for the harmed, face the harmer. My stupid idealist conscience considers sympathy, not pity, at its worst, the most basic and the least negotiable civil duty. Of course as a citizen of the world, I should strive to do more. That said, I am only a man and so I often do the least.
”
”
Asaad Almohammad (An Ishmael of Syria)
β€œ
To enslave an individual troubles your consciences, Archivist, but to enslave a clone is no more troubling than owning the latest six-wheeler ford, ethically. Because you cannot discern our differences, you assume we have none. But make no mistake: even same-stem fabricants cultured in the same wombtank are as singular as snowflakes.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
The book the reader has now before his eyes - from one end to the other, in its whole and in its details, whatever the omissions, the exceptions, or the faults - is the march from evil to good, from injustice to justice, from the false to the true, from night to day, from appetite to conscience, from rottenness to life, from brutality to duty, from Hell to Heaven, from nothingness to God. Starting point: matter; goal: the soul. Hydra at the beginning, angel at the end.
”
”
Victor Hugo (Les MisΓ©rables)
β€œ
In case you haven't noticed, as the result of a shamelessly rigged election in Florida, in which thousands of African Americans were arbitrarily disenfranchised, we now present ourselves to the rest of the world as proud, grinning, jut-jawed, pitiless war-lovers with appalling powerful weaponry - who stand unopposed. In case you haven't noticed, we are now as feared and hated all over the world as the Nazi's once were. And with good reason. In case you haven't noticed, our unelected leaders have dehumanized millions and millions of human beings simply because of their religion and race. We wound 'em and kill 'em and torture 'em and imprison 'em all we want. Piece of cake. In case you haven't noticed, we also dehumanize our own soldiers, not because of their religion or race, but because of their low social class. Send 'em anywhere. Make 'em do anything. Piece of cake. The O'Reilly Factor. So I am a man without a country, except for the librarians and a Chicago paper called "In These Times." Before we attacked Iraq, the majestic "New York Times" guaranteed there were weapons of destruction there. Albert Einstein and Mark Twain gave up on the human race at the end of their lives, even though Twain hadn't even seen the First World War. War is now a form of TV entertainment, and what made the First World War so particularly entertaining were two American inventions, barbed wire and the machine gun. Shrapnel was invented by an Englishman of the same name. Don't you wish you could have something named after you? Like my distinct betters Einstein and Twain, I now give up on people too. I am a veteran of the Second World War and I have to say this is the not the first time I surrendered to a pitiless war machine. My last words? "Life is no way to treat an animal, not even a mouse." Napalm came from Harvard. Veritas! Our president is a Christian? So was Adolf Hitler. What can be said to our young people, now that psychopathic personalities, which is to say persons without consciences, without senses of pity or shame, have taken all the money in the treasuries of our government and corporations and made it all their own?
”
”
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (A Man Without a Country)
β€œ
The study of law can be disappointing at times, a matter of applying narrow rules and arcane procedure to an uncooperative reality; a sort of glorified accounting that serves to regulate the affairs of those who have power--and that all too often seeks to explain, to those who do not, the ultimate wisdom and justness of their condition. But that's not all the law is. The law is also memory; the law also records a long-running conversation, a nation arguing with its conscience.
”
”
Barack Obama (Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance)
β€œ
Our too-young and too-new America, lusty because it is lonely, aggressive because it is afraid, insists upon seeing the world in terms of good and bad, the holy and the evil, the high and the low, the white and the black; our America is frightened of fact, of history, of processes, of necessity. It hugs the easy way of damning those whom it cannot understand, of excluding those who look different, and it salves its conscience with a self-draped cloak of righteousness
”
”
Richard Wright (Black Boy)
β€œ
Each of us is under a divinely spoken obligation to reach out with pardon and mercy and to forgive one another. There is a great need for this Christlike attribute in our families, in our marriages, in our wards and stakes, in our communities, and in our nations. We will receive the joy of forgiveness in our own lives when we are willing to extend that joy freely to others. Lip service is not enough. We need to purge our hearts and minds of feelings and thoughts of bitterness and let the light and the love of Christ enter in. As a result, the Spirit of the Lord will fill our souls with the joy accompanying divine peace of conscience.
”
”
Dieter F. Uchtdorf
β€œ
There is something sad about people going to bed. You can see they don’t give a damn whether they’re getting what they want out of life or not, you can see they don’t ever try to understand what we’re here for. They just don’t care. Americans or not, they sleep no matter what, they’re bloated mollusks, no sensibility, no trouble with their conscience. I’d seen too many troubling things to be easy in my mind. I knew too much and not enough. I’d better go out, I said to myself, I’d better go out again. Maybe I’ll meet Robinson. Naturally that was an idiotic idea, but I dreamed it up as an excuse for going out again, because no matter how I tossed and turned on my narrow bed, I couldn’t snatch the tiniest scrap of sleep. Even masturbation, at times like that, provides neither comfort nor entertainment. Then you're really in despair.
”
”
Louis-Ferdinand CΓ©line (Journey to the End of the Night)
β€œ
I've noticed a fascinating phenomenon in my thirty years of teaching: schools and schooling are increasingly irrelevant to the great enterprises of the planet. No one believes anymore that scientists are trained in science classes or politicians in civics classes or poets in English classes. The truth is that schools don't really teach anything except how to obey orders. This is a great mystery to me because thousands of humane, caring people work in schools as teachers and aides and administrators, but the abstract logic of the institution overwhelms their individual contributions. Although teachers to care and do work very, very hard, the institution is psychopathic -- it has no conscience. It rings a bell and the young man in the middle of writing a poem must close his notebook and move to a different cell where he must memorize that humans and monkeys derive from a common ancestor.
”
”
John Taylor Gatto (Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling)
β€œ
here’s a toast to Alan Turing born in harsher, darker times who thought outside the container and loved outside the lines and so the code-breaker was broken and we’re sorry yes now the s-word has been spoken the official conscience woken – very carefully scripted but at least it’s not encrypted – and the story does suggest a part 2 to the Turing Test: 1. can machines behave like humans? 2. can we?
”
”
Matt Harvey
β€œ
Since then your sere Majesty and your Lordships seek a simple answer, I will give it in this manner, neither horned nor toothed. Unless I am convinced by the testimony of the Scriptures or by clear reason (for I do not trust either in the pope or in councils alone, since it is well known that they have often erred and contradicted themselves), I am bound by the Scriptures I have quoted and my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not recant anything, since it is neither safe nor right to go against conscience. May God help me. Amen." (Reply to the Diet of Worms, April 18, 1521)
”
”
Martin Luther (Luther's Works, 33: Career of the Reformer III (Luther's Works))
β€œ
... what you think is right isn't the same as knowing what is right.
”
”
E.A. Bucchianeri (Brushstrokes of a Gadfly, (Gadfly Saga, #1))
β€œ
Sometimes, the Angel [of Music] leans over the cradle... and that is how there are little prodigies who play the fiddle at six better than men of fifty, which, you must admit is very wonderful. Sometimes, the Angel comes much later, because the children are naughty and won't learn their lessons or practice their scales. And sometimes, he does not come at all, because the children have a wicked heart or a bad conscience.
”
”
Gaston Leroux (The Phantom of the Opera)
β€œ
Clinging to him desperately, Sara kept her mouth at his ear. "Listen to me." All she could do was play her last card. Her voice trembled with emotion. "You can't change the truth. You can act as though you're deaf and blind, you can walk away from me forever, but the truth will still be there, and you can't make it go away. I love you." She felt an involuntary tremor run through him. "I love you," she repeated. "Don't lie to either of us by pretending you're leaving for my good. All you'll do is deny us both a chance at happiness. I'll long for you every day and night, but at least my conscience will be clear. I haven't held anything back from you, out of fear or pride or stubbornness." She felt the incredible tautness of his muscles, as if he were carved from marble. "For once have the strength not to walk away,"she whispered. "Stay with me. Let me love you, Derek.
”
”
Lisa Kleypas (Dreaming of You (The Gamblers of Craven's, #2))
β€œ
I'm not so fond of people myself, Evvy, but I took my vows for a reason. There are two classes of people in the world, the destroyers and the builders. I want to build, not destroy. You need to ask yourself who you're going to be.
”
”
Tamora Pierce (Melting Stones (Circle Reforged, #2))
β€œ
Forgiveness is a favor we do for ourselves, not a favor we do to the other party.
”
”
Harold S. Kushner (Living a Life That Matters: Resolving the Conflict Between Conscience and Success)
β€œ
What a fate: to be condemned to work for a firm where the slightest negligence at once gave rise to the gravest suspicion! Were all the employees nothing but a bunch of scoundrels, was there not among them one single loyal devoted man who, had he wasted only an hour or so of the firm's time in the morning, was so tormented by conscience as to be driven out of his mind and actually incapable of leaving his bed?
”
”
Franz Kafka (The Metamorphosis)
β€œ
There is no insurmountable solitude. All paths lead to the same goal: to convey to others what we are. And we must pass through solitude and difficulty, isolation and silence in order to reach forth to the enchanted place where we can dance our clumsy dance and sing our sorrowful song - but in this dance or in this song there are fulfilled the most ancient rites of our conscience in the awareness of being human and of believing in a common destiny.
”
”
Pablo Neruda
β€œ
Yes, Marcos is gay. Marcos is gay in San Francisco, black in South Africa, an Asian in Europe, a Chicano in San Ysidro, an anarchist in Spain, a Palestinian in Israel, a Mayan Indian in the streets of San Cristobal, a Jew in Germany, a Gypsy in Poland, a Mohawk in Quebec, a pacifist in Bosnia, a single woman on the Metro at 10pm, a peasant without land, a gang member in the slums, an unemployed worker, an unhappy student and, of course, a Zapatista in the mountains. Marcos is all the exploited, marginalised, oppressed minorities resisting and saying `Enough'. He is every minority who is now beginning to speak and every majority that must shut up and listen. He is every untolerated group searching for a way to speak. Everything that makes power and the good consciences of those in power uncomfortable -- this is Marcos.
”
”
Subcomandante Marcos
β€œ
Humans are the only animals that have children on purpose, keep in touch (or don't), care about birthdays, waste and lose time, brush their teeth, feel nostalgia, scrub stains, have religions and political parties and laws, wear keepsakes, apologize years after an offense, whisper, fear themselves, interpret dreams, hide their genitalia, shave, bury time capsules, and can choose not to eat something for reasons of conscience. The justifications for eating animals and for not eating them are often identical: we are not them.
”
”
Jonathan Safran Foer (Eating Animals)
β€œ
There's something sad about people going to bed. You can see they don't give a damn whether they're getting what they want out of life or not, you can see they don't even try to understand what we're here for. They just don't care.
”
”
Louis-Ferdinand CΓ©line (Journey to the End of the Night)
β€œ
Hamlet promised himself he’d throw down afterward, but I think perhaps when he said, β€œFrom this time forth, my thoughts be bloody, or be nothing worth!” the limits of blank verse weakened his resolve somehow. If he’d been free to follow the dictates of his conscience rather than the pen of Shakespeare, perhaps he would have abandoned verse altogether, like me, and contented himself with this instead: β€œBring it, muthafuckas. Bring it.
”
”
Kevin Hearne (Hounded (The Iron Druid Chronicles, #1))
β€œ
To those who are gay, lesbian, bisexual,or transgender-let me say- you are not alone. You're struggle, for the end to violence and discrimination, is a shared struggle. Today, I stand with you. And I call upon all countries and people, to stand with you too. A historic shift is underway. We must tackle the violence, decriminalize consensual same sex relationships and end discrimination. We must educate the public. I call on this council and people of conscience to make this happen. The time has come.
”
”
Ban Ki-moon
β€œ
The following proposition seems to me in a high degree probableβ€”namely, that any animal whatever, endowed with well-marked social instincts, the parental and filial affections being here included, would inevitably acquire a moral sense or conscience, as soon as its intellectual powers had become as well, or nearly as well developed, as in man. For, firstly, the social instincts lead an animal to take pleasure in the society of its fellows, to feel a certain amount of sympathy with them, and to perform various services for them.
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Charles Darwin (The Descent of Man)
β€œ
Normally, I’d lie and connive and do whatever necessary to make you take me into the south.” β€œBut …” More tears began to flow. β€œBut that thing …” β€œThing? What thing?” β€œThat thing … in one’s head … that tells you when something would be wrong to do. It won’t let me do it.” Feeling a sudden high level of annoyance, Gwenvael carefully asked, β€œDo you mean your … conscience?” Her tears turned into hysterical sobs, and she went down on her side, her head dropping into his lap. β€œDagmar! Everyone has a conscience.” β€œI don’t!” β€œOf course you do.” β€œI’m a politician, Gwenvael! Of course, I don’t have a conscience. At least I didn’t. Now I’m cursed with one. And it’s your fault!” Somehow he knew that last bit would happen.
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G.A. Aiken (What a Dragon Should Know (Dragon Kin, #3))
β€œ
Civil disobedience, as I put it to the audience, was not the problem, despite the warnings of some that it threatened social stability, that it led to anarchy. The greatest danger, I argued, was civil obedience, the submission of individual conscience to governmental authority. Such obedience led to the horrors we saw in totalitarian states, and in liberal states it led to the public's acceptance of war whenever the so-called democratic government decided on it... In such a world, the rule of law maintains things as they are. Therefore, to begin the process of change, to stop a war, to establish justice, it may be necessary to break the law, to commit acts of civil disobedience, as Southern black did, as antiwar protesters did.
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Howard Zinn (You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train: A Personal History of Our Times)
β€œ
Living in a constant chase after gain compels people to expend their spirit to the point of exhaustion in continual pretense and overreaching and anticipating other. Virtue has come to consist of doing something in less time that someone else. Hours in which honesty is permitted have become rare, and when they arrive one is tired and does not only want to "let oneself go" but actually wishes to stretch out as long and wide and ungainly as one happens to be... Soon we may well reach the point where people can no longer give in to the desire for a vita contemplativa (that is, taking a walk with ideas and friends) without self-contempt and a bad conscience.
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Friedrich Nietzsche (The Gay Science (History of Philosophy))
β€œ
Many well-meaning Dutch people have told me in all earnestness that nothing in Islamic culture incites abuse of women, that this is just a terrible misunderstanding. Men all over the world beat their women, I am constantly informed. In reality, these Westerners are the ones who misunderstand Islam. The Quaran mandates these punishments. It gives a legitimate basis for abuse, so that the perpetrators feel no shame and are not hounded by their conscience of their community. I wanted my art exhibit to make it difficult for people to look away from this problem. I wanted secular, non-Muslim people to stop kidding themselves that "Islam is peace and tolerance.
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Ayaan Hirsi Ali (Infidel)
β€œ
Do not worry in the least about yourself, leave all worry to God,' - this appears to be the commandment in all religions. This need not frighten anyone. He who devotes himself to service with a clear conscience, will day by day grasp the necessity for it in greater measure, and will continually grow richer in faith. The path of service can hardly be trodden by one who is not prepared to renounce self-interest, and to recognize the conditions of his birth. Consciously or unconsciously, every one of us does render some service or other. If we cultivate the habit of doing this service deliberately, our desire for service will steadily grow stronger, and will make not only for our own happiness but that of the world at large.
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Mahatma Gandhi
β€œ
So many misconceptions surround the notion of heroism. Far too many categorize a hero as a champion on the battlefield, a commander of legions, a master of rare talent or ability. Granted, there have been heroes who fit those descriptions. But many men of great evil as well. Heed me. A hero sacrifices for the greater good. A hero is true to his or her conscience. In short, heroism means doing the right thing regardless of the consequences. Although any person could fit that description, very few do. Choose this day to be one of them." (Beyonders - A World Without Heroes)
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Brandon Mull
β€œ
The most dangerous people in the world are not the tiny minority instigating evil acts, but those who do the acts for them. For example, when the British invaded India, many Indians accepted to work for the British to kill off Indians who resisted their occupation. So in other words, many Indians were hired to kill other Indians on behalf of the enemy for a paycheck. Today, we have mercenaries in Africa, corporate armies from the western world, and unemployed men throughout the Middle East killing their own people - and people of other nations - for a paycheck. To act without a conscience, but for a paycheck, makes anyone a dangerous animal. The devil would be powerless if he couldn't entice people to do his work. So as long as money continues to seduce the hungry, the hopeless, the broken, the greedy, and the needy, there will always be war between brothers.
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Suzy Kassem
β€œ
Plea Against the Death Penalty Look, examine, reflect. You hold capital punishment up as an example. Why? Because of what it teaches. And just what is it that you wish to teach by means of this example? That thou shalt not kill. And how do you teach that "thou shalt not kill"? By killing. I have examined the death penalty under each of its two aspects: as a direct action, and as an indirect one. What does it come down to? Nothing but something horrible and useless, nothing but a way of shedding blood that is called a crime when an individual commits it, but is (sadly) called "justice" when society brings it about. Make no mistake, you lawmakers and judges, in the eyes of God as in those of conscience, what is a crime when individuals do it is no less an offense when society commits the deed.
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Victor Hugo
β€œ
Modern capitalism needs men who co-operate smoothly, and in large numbers; who want to consume more and more; and whose tastes are standardized and can be easily influenced and anticipated. It needs men who feel free and independent, not subject to any authority or principle or conscienceβ€”yet willing to be commanded, to do what is expected of them, to fit into the social machine without friction; who can be guided without force, led without leaders, prompted without aimβ€”except the one to make good, to be on the move, to function, to go ahead. What is the outcome? Modern man is alienated from himself, from his fellow men, and from nature.
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Erich Fromm (The Art of Loving)
β€œ
Two Kinds of People There are two kinds of people on earth today, Two kinds of people no more I say. Not the good or the bad, for it's well understood, The good are half bad, the bad are half good. Not the happy or sad, for in the swift-flying years, Bring each man his laughter, each man his tears. Not the rich or the poor, for to count a man's wealth, You must know the state of his conscience and health. Not the humble and proud, for in life's busy span, Who puts on vain airs is not counted a man. No! the two kinds of people on earth I mean, Are the people who lift, the people who lean. Wherever you go you'll find the world's masses Are ever divided into these two classes. And, strangely enough, you will find, too, I mean, There is only one lifter to twenty who lean. In which class are you? Are you easing the load Of the overtaxed lifters who toiled down the road? Or are you a leaner who lets others bear, Your portion of worry and labor and care?
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Ella Wheeler Wilcox
β€œ
Elie Wiesel says that the greatest evil in the world is not anger or hatred, but indifference. If that is true, then the opposite is also true: that the greatest love we can show our children is the attention we pay them, the time we take for them. Maybe we serve children the best simply by noticing them.
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Mumia Abu-Jamal (Death Blossoms: Reflections from a Prisoner of Conscience)
β€œ
Objectification is a critical reason why an abuser tends to get worse over time. As his conscience adapts to one level of crueltyβ€”or violenceβ€”he builds to the next. By depersonalizing his partner, the abuser protects himself from the natural human emotions of guilt and empathy, so that he can sleep at night with a clear conscience. He distances himself so far from her humanity that her feelings no longer count, or simply cease to exist. These walls tend to grow over time, so that after a few years in a relationship my clients can reach a point where they feel no more guilt over degrading or threatening their partners than you or I would feel after angrily kicking a stone in the driveway.
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Lundy Bancroft (Why Does He Do That?: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men)
β€œ
In fact, were it given to our human eye to see into the consciences of others, we would judge a man much more surely from what he dreams than from what he thinks. There is will in the thought, there is none in the dream. Even in the gigantic and the ideal, the dream, which is completely spontaneous, takes and keeps the form of our mind. Nothing springs more directly and more sincerely from our innermost souls than our unreflected and indefinite aspirations, much more than in ideas, which are structured, studied, and compared, can we find the true character of each man. Our chimeras are most like us. Each of us dreams the unknown and the impossible according to his own nature.
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Victor Hugo (Les MisΓ©rables)
β€œ
I was once asked if I had any ideas for a really scary reality TV show. I have one reality show that would really make your hair stand on end: "C-Students from Yale." George W. Bush has gathered around him upper-crust C-students who know no history or geography, plus not-so-closeted white supremacists, aka Christians, and plus, most frighteningly, psychopathic personalities, or PPs, the medical term for smart, personable people who have no consciences. To say somebody is a PP is to make a perfectly respectable diagnosis, like saying he or she has appendicitis or athlete's foot . . . PPs are presentable, they know full well the suffering their actions may cause others, but they do not care. They cannot care because they are nuts. They have a screw loose! . . . So many of these heartless PPs now hold big jobs in our federal government, as though they were leaders instead of sick. They have taken charge of communications and the schools, so we might as well be Poland under occupation. They might have felt that taking our country into an endless war was simply something decisive to do. What has allowed so many PPs to rise so high in corporations, and now in government, is that they are so decisive. They are going to do something every fuckin' day and they are not afraid. Unlike normal people, they are never filled with doubts, for the simple reasons that they don't give a fuck what happens next. Simply can't. Do this! Do that! Mobilize the reserves! Privatize the public schools! Attack Iraq! Cut health care! Tap everybody's telephone! Cut taxes on the rich! Build a trillion-dollar missile shield! Fuck habeas corpus and the Sierra Club and In These Times, and kiss my ass! There is a tragic flaw in our precious Constitution, and I don't know what can be done to fix it. This is it: Only nut cases want to be president.
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Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (A Man Without a Country)
β€œ
I hate the indifferent. I believe that living means taking sides. Those who really live cannot help being a citizen and a partisan. Indifference and apathy are parasitism, perversion, not life. That is why I hate the indifferent. The indifference is the deadweight of history. The indifference operates with great power on history. The indifference operates passively, but it operates. It is fate, that which cannot be counted on. It twists programs and ruins the best-conceived plans. It is the raw material that ruins intelligence. That what happens, the evil that weighs upon all, happens because the human mass abdicates to their will; allows laws to be promulgated that only the revolt could nullify, and leaves men that only a mutiny will be able to overthrow to achieve the power. The mass ignores because it is careless and then it seems like it is the product of fate that runs over everything and everyone: the one who consents as well as the one who dissents; the one who knew as well as the one who didn’t know; the active as well as the indifferent. Some whimper piously, others curse obscenely, but nobody, or very few ask themselves: If I had tried to impose my will, would this have happened? I also hate the indifferent because of that: because their whimpering of eternally innocent ones annoys me. I make each one liable: how they have tackled with the task that life has given and gives them every day, what have they done, and especially, what they have not done. And I feel I have the right to be inexorable and not squander my compassion, of not sharing my tears with them. I am a partisan, I am alive, I feel the pulse of the activity of the future city that those on my side are building is alive in their conscience. And in it, the social chain does not rest on a few; nothing of what happens in it is a matter of luck, nor the product of fate, but the intelligent work of the citizens. Nobody in it is looking from the window of the sacrifice and the drain of a few. Alive, I am a partisan. That is why I hate the ones that don’t take sides, I hate the indifferent.
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Antonio Gramsci
β€œ
What do I fear? Myself? There’s none else by. Richard loves Richard; that is, I and I. Is there a murderer here? No. Yes, I am. Then fly! What, from myself? Great reason why: Lest I revenge. What, myself upon myself? Alack, I love myself. Wherefore? For any good That I myself have done unto myself? O, no! Alas, I rather hate myself For hateful deeds committed by myself. I am a villain. Yet I lie. I am not. Fool, of thyself speak well. Fool, do not flatter: My conscience hath a thousand several tongues, And every tongue brings in a several tale, And every tale condemns me for a villain. Perjury, perjury, in the highest degree; Murder, stern murder, in the direst degree; All several sins, all used in each degree, Throng to the bar, crying all, β€œGuilty! guilty!” I shall despair. There is no creature loves me, And if I die no soul will pity me. And wherefore should they, since that I myself Find in myself no pity to myself?
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William Shakespeare (Richard III)
β€œ
There has never been a just [war], never an honorable one--on the part of the instigator of the war. I can see a million years ahead, and this rule will never change in so many as half a dozen instances. The loud little handful--as usual--will shout for the war. The pulpit will--warily and cautiously--object--at first; the great, big, dull bulk of the nation will rub its sleepy eyes and try to make out why there should be a war, and will say, earnestly and indignantly, 'It is unjust and dishonorable, and there is no necessity for it.' Then the handful will shout louder. A few fair men on the other side will argue and reason against the war with speech and pen, and at first will have a hearing and be applauded; but it will not last long; those others will outshout them, and presently the anti-war audiences will thin out and lose popularity. Before long you will see this curious thing: the speakers stoned from the platform, and free speech strangled by hordes of furious men who in their secret hearts are still at one with those stoned speakers--as earlier--but do not dare say so. And now the whole nation--pulpit and all--will take up the war-cry, and shout itself hoarse, and mob any honest man who ventures to open his mouth; and presently such mouths will cease to open. Next the statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting the blame upon the nation that is attacked, and every man will be glad of those conscience-soothing falsities, and will diligently study them, and refuse to examine any refutations of them; and thus he will by and by convince himself the war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he enjoys after this process of grotesque self-deception.
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Mark Twain (The Mysterious Stranger and Other Stories)
β€œ
A NATION'S GREATNESS DEPENDS ON ITS LEADER To vastly improve your country and truly make it great again, start by choosing a better leader. Do not let the media or the establishment make you pick from the people they choose, but instead choose from those they do not pick. Pick a leader from among the people who is heart-driven, one who identifies with the common man on the street and understands what the country needs on every level. Do not pick a leader who is only money-driven and does not understand or identify with the common man, but only what corporations need on every level. Pick a peacemaker. One who unites, not divides. A cultured leader who supports the arts and true freedom of speech, not censorship. Pick a leader who will not only bail out banks and airlines, but also families from losing their homes -- or jobs due to their companies moving to other countries. Pick a leader who will fund schools, not limit spending on education and allow libraries to close. Pick a leader who chooses diplomacy over war. An honest broker in foreign relations. A leader with integrity, one who says what they mean, keeps their word and does not lie to their people. Pick a leader who is strong and confident, yet humble. Intelligent, but not sly. A leader who encourages diversity, not racism. One who understands the needs of the farmer, the teacher, the doctor, and the environmentalist -- not only the banker, the oil tycoon, the weapons developer, or the insurance and pharmaceutical lobbyist. Pick a leader who will keep jobs in your country by offering companies incentives to hire only within their borders, not one who allows corporations to outsource jobs for cheaper labor when there is a national employment crisis. Choose a leader who will invest in building bridges, not walls. Books, not weapons. Morality, not corruption. Intellectualism and wisdom, not ignorance. Stability, not fear and terror. Peace, not chaos. Love, not hate. Convergence, not segregation. Tolerance, not discrimination. Fairness, not hypocrisy. Substance, not superficiality. Character, not immaturity. Transparency, not secrecy. Justice, not lawlessness. Environmental improvement and preservation, not destruction. Truth, not lies. Most importantly, a great leader must serve the best interests of the people first, not those of multinational corporations. Human life should never be sacrificed for monetary profit. There are no exceptions. In addition, a leader should always be open to criticism, not silencing dissent. Any leader who does not tolerate criticism from the public is afraid of their dirty hands to be revealed under heavy light. And such a leader is dangerous, because they only feel secure in the darkness. Only a leader who is free from corruption welcomes scrutiny; for scrutiny allows a good leader to be an even greater leader. And lastly, pick a leader who will make their citizens proud. One who will stir the hearts of the people, so that the sons and daughters of a given nation strive to emulate their leader's greatness. Only then will a nation be truly great, when a leader inspires and produces citizens worthy of becoming future leaders, honorable decision makers and peacemakers. And in these times, a great leader must be extremely brave. Their leadership must be steered only by their conscience, not a bribe.
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Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
β€œ
At this time in history, sick, afraid, and despondent are the general conditions that affect the majority of poeple almost everywhere. It's difficult and challenging to follow the call of conscience when we're under the dark veil of these forces. At the same time, it's painful not to follow it. When you become healthy, courageous, and hopeful, following your conscience becomes easier. When people are healthy, courageous, and hopeful, it's difficult to bend their mind and will. You can't force them to do what you'd like them to do against their will. They will speak out what they believe, and stand up and do what is right even when it means a loss to them. I am hopeful because I have witnessed this change throughout my life. From the realization of what I really am, I became hopeful, courageous, and passionate for life, and I felt responsible for the general condition of humanity and the Earth because they are not separate from me.
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Ilchi Lee (Change: Realizing Your Greatest Potential)
β€œ
Educators may bring upon themselves unnecessary travail by taking a tactless and unjustifiable position about the relation between scientific and religious narratives. We see this, of course, in the conflict concerning creation science. Some educators representing, as they think, the conscience of science act much like those legislators who in 1925 prohibited by law the teaching of evolution in Tennessee. In that case, anti-evolutionists were fearful that a scientific idea would undermine religious belief. Today, pro-evolutionists are fearful that a religious idea will undermine scientific belief. The former had insufficient confidence in religion; the latter insufficient confidence in science. The point is that profound but contradictory ideas may exist side by side, if they are constructed from different materials and methods and have different purposes. Each tells us something important about where we stand in the universe, and it is foolish to insist that they must despise each other.
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Neil Postman (The End of Education: Redefining the Value of School)
β€œ
Dear Child, Sometimes on your travel through hell, you meet people that think they are in heaven because of their cleverness and ability to get away with things. Travel past them because they don't understand who they have become and never will. These type of people feel justified in revenge and will never learn mercy or forgiveness because they live by comparison. They are the people that don't care about anyone, other than who is making them feel confident. They don’t understand that their deity is not rejoicing with them because of their actions, rather he is trying to free them from their insecurities, by softening their heart. They rather put out your light than find their own. They don't have the ability to see beyond the false sense of happiness they get from destroying others. You know what happiness is and it isn’t this. Don’t see their success as their deliverance. It is a mask of vindication which has no audience, other than their own kind. They have joined countless others that call themselves β€œsurvivors”. They believe that they are entitled to win because life didn’t go as planned for them. You are not like them. You were not meant to stay in hell and follow their belief system. You were bound for greatness. You were born to help them by leading. Rise up and be the light home. You were given the gift to see the truth. They will have an army of people that are like them and you are going to feel alone. However, your family in heaven stands beside you now. They are your strength and as countless as the stars. It is time to let go! Love, Your Guardian Angel
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Shannon L. Alder
β€œ
Never judge someone's character based on the words of another. Instead, study the motives behind the words of the person casting the bad judgment. An honest woman can sell tangerines all day and remain a good person until she dies, but there will always be naysayers who will try to convince you otherwise. Perhaps this woman did not give them something for free, or at a discount. Perhaps too, that she refused to stand with them when they were wrong β€” or just stood up for something she felt was right. And also, it could be that some bitter women are envious of her, or that she rejected the advances of some very proud men. Always trust your heart. If the Creator stood before a million men with the light of a million lamps, only a few would truly see him because truth is already alive in their hearts. Truth can only be seen by those with truth in them. He who does not have Truth in his heart, will always be blind to her.
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Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
β€œ
As a counterpoint to sociopathy, the condition of narcissism is particularly interesting and instructive. Narcissism is, in a metaphorical sense, one half of what sociopathy is. Even clinical narcissists are able to feel most emotions are strongly as anyone else does, from guilt to sadness to desperate love and passion. The half that is missing is the crucial ability to understand what other people are feeling. Narcissism is a failure not of conscience but of empathy, which is the capacity to perceive emotions in others and so react to them appropriately. The poor narcissist cannot see past his own nose, emotionally speaking, and as with the Pillsbury Doughboy, any input from the outside will spring back as if nothing had happened. Unlike sociopaths, narcissists often are in psychological pain, and may sometimes seek psychotherapy. When a narcissist looks for help, one of the underlying issues is usually that, unbeknownst to him, he is alienating his relationships on account of his lack of empathy with others, and is feeling confused, abandoned, and lonely. He misses the people he loves, and is ill-equipped to get them back. Sociopaths, in contrast, do not care about other people, and so do not miss them when they are alienated or gone, except as one might regret the absence of a useful appliance that one has somehow lost.
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Martha Stout (The Sociopath Next Door)
β€œ
Dearest creature in creation, Study English pronunciation. I will teach you in my verse Sounds like corpse, corps, horse, and worse. I will keep you, Suzy, busy, Make your head with heat grow dizzy. Tear in eye, your dress will tear. So shall I! Oh hear my prayer. Just compare heart, beard, and heard, Dies and diet, lord and word, Sword and sward, retain and Britain. (Mind the latter, how it’s written.) Now I surely will not plague you With such words as plaque and ague. But be careful how you speak: Say break and steak, but bleak and streak; Cloven, oven, how and low, Script, receipt, show, poem, and toe. Hear me say, devoid of trickery, Daughter, laughter, and Terpsichore, Typhoid, measles, topsails, aisles, Exiles, similes, and reviles; Scholar, vicar, and cigar, Solar, mica, war and far; One, anemone, Balmoral, Kitchen, lichen, laundry, laurel; Gertrude, German, wind and mind, Scene, Melpomene, mankind. Billet does not rhyme with ballet, Bouquet, wallet, mallet, chalet. Blood and flood are not like food, Nor is mould like should and would. Viscous, viscount, load and broad, Toward, to forward, to reward. And your pronunciation’s OK When you correctly say croquet, Rounded, wounded, grieve and sieve, Friend and fiend, alive and live. Ivy, privy, famous; clamour And enamour rhyme with hammer. River, rival, tomb, bomb, comb, Doll and roll and some and home. Stranger does not rhyme with anger, Neither does devour with clangour. Souls but foul, haunt but aunt, Font, front, wont, want, grand, and grant, Shoes, goes, does. Now first say finger, And then singer, ginger, linger, Real, zeal, mauve, gauze, gouge and gauge, Marriage, foliage, mirage, and age. Query does not rhyme with very, Nor does fury sound like bury. Dost, lost, post and doth, cloth, loth. Job, nob, bosom, transom, oath. Though the differences seem little, We say actual but victual. Refer does not rhyme with deafer. Foeffer does, and zephyr, heifer. Mint, pint, senate and sedate; Dull, bull, and George ate late. Scenic, Arabic, Pacific, Science, conscience, scientific. Liberty, library, heave and heaven, Rachel, ache, moustache, eleven. We say hallowed, but allowed, People, leopard, towed, but vowed. Mark the differences, moreover, Between mover, cover, clover; Leeches, breeches, wise, precise, Chalice, but police and lice; Camel, constable, unstable, Principle, disciple, label. Petal, panel, and canal, Wait, surprise, plait, promise, pal. Worm and storm, chaise, chaos, chair, Senator, spectator, mayor. Tour, but our and succour, four. Gas, alas, and Arkansas. Sea, idea, Korea, area, Psalm, Maria, but malaria. Youth, south, southern, cleanse and clean. Doctrine, turpentine, marine. Compare alien with Italian, Dandelion and battalion. Sally with ally, yea, ye, Eye, I, ay, aye, whey, and key. Say aver, but ever, fever, Neither, leisure, skein, deceiver. Heron, granary, canary. Crevice and device and aerie. Face, but preface, not efface. Phlegm, phlegmatic, ass, glass, bass. Large, but target, gin, give, verging, Ought, out, joust and scour, scourging. Ear, but earn and wear and tear Do not rhyme with here but ere. Seven is right, but so is even, Hyphen, roughen, nephew Stephen, Monkey, donkey, Turk and jerk, Ask, grasp, wasp, and cork and work. Pronunciation (think of Psyche!) Is a paling stout and spikey? Won’t it make you lose your wits, Writing groats and saying grits? It’s a dark abyss or tunnel: Strewn with stones, stowed, solace, gunwale, Islington and Isle of Wight, Housewife, verdict and indict. Finally, which rhymes with enough, Though, through, plough, or dough, or cough? Hiccough has the sound of cup. My advice is to give up!!!
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Gerard Nolst TrenitΓ© (Drop your Foreign Accent)
β€œ
I think one of the sweetest lessons taught by the Prophet, and yet one of the saddest, occurred close to the time of his death. He was required to leave his plan and vision of the Rocky Mountains and give himself up to face a court of supposed justice. These are his words: 'I am going like a lamb to the slaughter; but I am calm as a summer's morning; I have a conscience void of offense towards God, and towards all men' (D&C 135:4). That statement of the Prophet teaches us obedience to law and the importance of having a clear conscience toward God and toward our fellowmen. The Prophet Joseph Smith taught these principles--by example. There was to be one great final lesson before his mortal life ended. He was incarcerated in Carthage Jail with his brother Hyrum, with John Taylor, and with Willard Richards. The angry mob stormed the jail; they came up the stairway, blasphemous in their cursing, heavily armed, and began to fire at will. Hyrum was hit and died. John Taylor took several balls of fire within his bosom. The Prophet Joseph, with his pistol in hand, was attempting to defend his life and that of his brethren, and yet he could tell from the pounding on the door that this mob would storm that door and would kill John Taylor and Willard Richards in an attempt to kill him. And so his last great act here upon the earth was to leave the door and lead Willard Richards to safety, throw the gun on the floor, and go to the window, that they might see him, that the attention of this ruthless mob might be focused upon him rather than the others. Joseph Smith gave his life. Willard Richards was spared, and John Taylor recovered from his wounds. 'Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends' (John 15:13). The Prophet Joseph Smith taught us love--by example.
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Thomas S. Monson
β€œ
Scholars discern motions in history & formulate these motions into rules that govern the rises & falls of civilizations. My belief runs contrary, however. To wit: history admits no rules; only outcomes. What precipitates outcomes? Vicious acts & virtuous acts. What precipitates acts? Belief. Belief is both prize & battlefield, within the mind & in the mind’s mirror, the world. If we believe humanity is a ladder of tribes, a colosseum of confrontation, exploitation & bestiality, such a humanity is surely brought into being, & history's Horroxes, Boerhaaves & Gooses shall prevail. You & I, the moneyed, the privileged, the fortunate, shall not fare so badly in this world, provided our luck holds. What of it if our consciences itch? Why undermine the dominance of our race, our gunships, our heritage & our legacy? Why fight the β€œnatural” (oh, weaselly word!) order of things? Why? Because of this:β€”one fine day, a purely predatory world shall consume itself. Yes, the devil shall take the hindmost until the foremost is the hindmost. In an individual, selfishness uglifies the soul. For the human species, selfishness is extinction. Is this the doom written within our nature? If we believe that humanity may transcend tooth & claw, if we believe divers races & creeds can share this world as peaceably as the orphans share their candlenut tree, if we believe that leaders must be just, violence muzzled, power accountable & the riches of the Earth & its Oceans shared equitably, such a world will come to pass. I am not deceived. It is the hardest of worlds to make real. Torturous advances won over generations can be lost by a single stroke of a myopic president’s pen or a vainglorious general’s sword. A life spent shaping a world I want Jackson to inherit, not one I fear Jackson shall inherit, this strikes me as a life worth the living.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)