Opinionated Person Quotes

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Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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.
Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)
1. Be Impeccable With Your Word Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love. 2. Don't Take Anything Personally Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering. 3. Don't Make Assumptions Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life. 4. Always Do Your Best Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret.
Miguel Ruiz
I am only resolved to act in that manner, which will, in my own opinion, constitute my happiness, without reference to you, or to any person so wholly unconnected with me.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
Although I'm only fourteen, I know quite well what I want, I know who is right and who is wrong. I have my opinions, my own ideas and principles, and although it may sound pretty mad from an adolescent, I feel more of a person than a child, I feel quite indepedent of anyone.
Anne Frank (The Diary of Anne Frank)
To be rejected by someone doesn't mean you should also reject yourself or that you should think of yourself as a lesser person. It doesn't mean that nobody will ever love you anymore. Remember that only ONE person has rejected you at the moment, and it only hurt so much because to you, that person's opinion symbolized the opinion of the whole world, of God.
Jocelyn Soriano (Mend My Broken Heart)
Bitch (noun): A woman who won't bang her head against the wall obsessing over someone else's opinion - be it a man or anyone else in her life. She understands that if someone does not approve of her, it's just one person's opinion; therefore, it's of no real importance. She doesn't try to live up to anyone else's standards - only her own. Because of this, she relates to a man very differently.
Sherry Argov (Why Men Love Bitches: From Doormat to Dreamgirl—A Woman's Guide to Holding Her Own in a Relationship)
Dignity /ˈdignitē/ noun 1. The moment you realize that the person you cared for has nothing intellectually or spiritually to offer you, but a headache. 2. The moment you realize God had greater plans for you that don’t involve crying at night or sad Pinterest quotes. 3. The moment you stop comparing yourself to others because it undermines your worth, education and your parent’s wisdom. 4. The moment you live your dreams, not because of what it will prove or get you, but because that is all you want to do. People’s opinions don’t matter. 5. The moment you realize that no one is your enemy, except yourself. 6. The moment you realize that you can have everything you want in life. However, it takes timing, the right heart, the right actions, the right passion and a willingness to risk it all. If it is not yours, it is because you really didn’t want it, need it or God prevented it. 7. The moment you realize the ghost of your ancestors stood between you and the person you loved. They really don't want you mucking up the family line with someone that acts anything less than honorable. 8. The moment you realize that happiness was never about getting a person. They are only a helpmate towards achieving your life mission. 9. The moment you believe that love is not about losing or winning. It is just a few moments in time, followed by an eternity of situations to grow from. 10. The moment you realize that you were always the right person. Only ignorant people walk away from greatness.
Shannon L. Alder
Everyone has a sense of humor. If you don't laugh at jokes, you probably laugh at opinions.
Criss Jami (Killosophy)
Do not think of knocking out another person's brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago.
Horace Mann
What is considered impossible is someone else’s opinion. What is possible is my decision.
Idowu Koyenikan (All You Need Is a Ball: What Soccer Teaches Us about Success in Life and Business)
We judge others instantly by their clothes, their cars, their appearance, their race, their education, their social status. The list is endless. What gets me is that most people decide who another person is before they have even spoken to them. What's even worse is that these same people decide who someone else is, and don't even know who they are themselves.
Ashly Lorenzana
Whenever we hear an opinion and believe it, we make an agreement, and it becomes part of our belief system.
Miguel Ruiz (The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom)
If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.
John Stuart Mill (On Liberty)
I personally like being unique. I like being my own person with my own style and my own opinions and my own toothbrush.
Ellen DeGeneres (Seriously... I'm Kidding)
Don't change your mind just because people are offended; change your mind if you're wrong.
Criss Jami (Diotima, Battery, Electric Personality)
be a person with knowledge not just opinions
Bernardine Evaristo (Girl, Woman, Other)
To give a person an opinion one must first judge well whether that person is of the disposition to receive it or not.
Yamamoto Tsunetomo (Hagakure: The Book of the Samurai)
One of the most important of life´s lessons is to learn independance, to understand freedom. This means independence from attachments, from results, from opinions, and from expectations. Breaking attachments leads to freedom, but breaking attachments does not mean abandoning a loving and meaningful relationship, a relationship that nourrishes your soul. It means ending dependency on any person or thing. Love is never a dependency.
Brian L. Weiss (Messages from the Masters: Tapping Into the Power of Love)
People can have their opinions about everything in the world, but people's opinions end where the tip of my nose begins. Your opinions of others can only go so far as to where their own shoreline is. The world is for your taking, but other people are not. One is only allowed to have an opinion of me, if that person is done educating him/herself on everything about me. Before people educate themselves on everything about you, they're not allowed to open their venomous mouthes and have an opinion about you.
C. JoyBell C.
He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them. But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion... Nor is it enough that he should hear the opinions of adversaries from his own teachers, presented as they state them, and accompanied by what they offer as refutations. He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them...he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
John Stuart Mill (On Liberty)
True saddness is when someone still thinks your the same person after all these years. They brand you because of their own ego, fear and lack of spirituality. What's sadder is when they are Christian.
Shannon L. Alder
A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
A person is wise if he listens to millions of advice and doesn't implement any of it.
Michael Bassey Johnson
Without data, you're just another person with an opinion.
W. Edwards Deming
What it means to be authentic: - to be more concerned with truth than opinions - to be sincere and not pretend - to be free from hypocrisy: "walk your talk" - to know who you are and to be that person - to not fear others seeing your vulnerabilities - being confident to walk away from situations where you can't be yourself - being awake to your own feelings - being free from others' opinions of you - accepting and loving yourself
Sue Fitzmaurice
I am a strong and powerful woman. I am proud to be a woman and I celebrate the qualities that I have as a woman. I am not defined by other people’s opinion of who I should be or what I should do as a woman. I determine that, not anyone else. I am not passed up for a position, title, or promotion because I am a woman. I fully deserve all the good things that comes my way. Irrespective of what anyone might think, being a woman places no boundaries or limits on my abilities. I can do anything I set my mind to. I celebrate my womanhood and I am beautiful both inside and out.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
Don't take anything Personally Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering
Miguel Ruiz
You can disagree with another person's opinions. You can disagree with their doctrines. You can't disagree with their experience.
Krista Tippett (Speaking of Faith)
The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. ...We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. ...In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons...who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.
Edward L. Bernays (Propaganda)
Stupidity is much the same all the world over. A stupid person's notions and feelings may confidently be inferred from those which prevail in the circle by which the person is surrounded. Not so with those whose opinions and feelings are an emanation from their own nature and faculties.
John Stuart Mill (The Subjection of Women)
The power of a bold idea uttered publicly in defiance of dominant opinion cannot be easily measured. Those special people who speak out in such a way as to shake up not only the self-assurance of their enemies, but the complacency of their friends, are precious catalysts for change.
Howard Zinn (You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train: A Personal History of Our Times)
A ‘normal person’ is what is left after society has squeezed out all unconventional opinions and aspirations out of a human being.
Mokokoma Mokhonoana
I consider myself to be a man of principle. But, what man does not? Even the cutthroat, I have noticed, considers his actions "moral" after a fashion. Perhaps another person, reading of my life, would name me a religious tyrant. He could call me arrogant. What is to make that man's opinion any less valid than my own? I guess it all comes down to one fact: In the end, I'm the one with the armies.
Brandon Sanderson (The Final Empire (Mistborn, #1))
He had all the attributes of a perfect man, and, in my opinion, no finer personality ever existed. {Edison's opinion of the great Robert Ingersoll}
Thomas A. Edison
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)
I am not a person of opinions because I feel the counter arguments too strongly.
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (The Journals of Mary Shelley)
It is easier to tell a person what life is not, rather than to tell them what it is. A child understands weeds that grow from lack of attention, in a garden. However, it is hard to explain the wild flowers that one gardener calls weeds, and another considers beautiful ground cover.
Shannon L. Alder
When we know what we are trying to achieve, we are less likely to be swayed by uninformed opinions and more inclined to make principled and ethical decisions.
Steve Pemberton (The Lighthouse Effect: How Ordinary People Can Have an Extraordinary Impact in the World)
Don’t Take Anything Personally Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.
Nikki Sixx
I also learned that a person was not necessarily bad just because you did not agree with him, and that if you believed in something, you had better be prepared to defend it.
Hillary Rodham Clinton
In order to be embarrassed, a person has to care about the opinions of others first.
Colleen Hoover (Confess)
For other people, I can't speak - but, personally, I haven't gotten wise on anything. Certainly, I've been through this and that; and when it happens again, I say to myself, Here it is again. But that doesn't seem to help me. In my opinion, I, personally, have gotten steadily sillier and sillier - and that's a fact.
Christopher Isherwood (A Single Man)
They dispute not in order to find or even to seek Truth, but for victory, and to appear the more learned and strenuous upholders of a contrary opinion. Such persons should be avoided by all who have not a good breastplate of patience.
Giordano Bruno
If you make art, people will talk about it. Some of the things they say will be nice, some won’t. You’ll already have made that art, and when they’re talking about the last thing you did, you should already be making the next thing. If bad reviews (of whatever kind) upset you, just don’t read them. It’s not like you’ve signed an agreement with the person buying the book to exchange your book for their opinion. Do whatever you have to do to keep making art. I know people who love bad reviews, because it means they’ve made something happen and made people talk; I know people who have never read any of their reviews. It’s their call. You get on with making art.
Neil Gaiman
We're all in the dark. We try to find out, but can you imagine anything more ludicrous than one person's opinion of another person? One goes along thinking one knows; but one really doesn't know
Virginia Woolf (The Voyage Out)
Senses of humor define people, as factions, deeper rooted than religious or political opinions. When carrying out everyday tasks, opinions are rather easy to set aside, but those whom a person shares a sense of humor with are his closest friends. They are always there to make the biggest influence.
Criss Jami (Killosophy)
It is useless to talk with those who do not understand one and troublesome to talk with those who criticize from a feeling of superiority. Especially one-sided persons are troublesome. Few are accomplished in many arts and most cling narrowly to their own opinion.
Murasaki Shikibu (Diaries of court ladies of old Japan)
Nothing Personal? You've harrassed my mother, stolen my car, and now you're telling people I've gotten you pregnant! In my opinion, getting someone pregnant is pretty fucking personal! Jesus, isn't it enough I'm accused of murder? What are you the bounty hunter from hell?
Janet Evanovich (One for the Money (Stephanie Plum, #1))
The latter part of a wise person's life is occupied with curing the follies, prejudices and false opinions they contracted earlier.
Jonathan Swift
Since every country stands in numerous and various relations with the other countries of the world, and many, our own among the number, exercise actual authority over some of these, a knowledge of the established rules of international morality is essential to the duty of every nation, and therefore of every person in it who helps to make up the nation, and whose voice and feeling form a part of what is called public opinion. Let not any one pacify his conscience by the delusion that he can do no harm if he takes no part, and forms no opinion. Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing. He is not a good man who, without a protest, allows wrong to be committed in his name, and with the means which he helps to supply, because he will not trouble himself to use his mind on the subject. It depends on the habit of attending to and looking into public transactions, and on the degree of information and solid judgment respecting them that exists in the community, whether the conduct of the nation as a nation, both within itself and towards others, shall be selfish, corrupt, and tyrannical, or rational and enlightened, just and noble.
John Stuart Mill (Inaugural Address Delivered to the University of St Andrews, 2/1/1867 (Collected Works))
You say that I'm nobody, and you agree that nobody's perfect. Based on logic, I'm a perfect person according to your opinion.
Toba Beta (Master of Stupidity)
A lot of the stories were highly suspicious, in her opinion. There was the one that ended when the two good children pushed the wicked witch into her own oven...Stories like this stopped people thinking properly, she was sure. She'd read that one and thought, Excuse me? No one has an oven big enough to get a whole person in, and what made the children think they could just walk around eating people's houses in any case? And why does some boy too stupid to know a cow is worth a lot more than five beans have the right to murder a giant and steal all his gold? Not to mention commit an act of ecological vandalism? And some girl who can't tell the difference between a wolf and her grandmother must either have been as dense as teak or come from an extremely ugly family.
Terry Pratchett
Where an excess of power prevails, property of no sort is duly respected. No man is safe in his opinions, his person, his faculties or his possessions.
James Madison
The really valuable thing in the pageant of human life seems to me not the political state, but the creative, sentient individual, the personality; it alone creates the noble and the sublime, while the herd as such remains dull in thought and dull in feeling.
Albert Einstein (Ideas and Opinions)
A man has as many social selves as there are distinct groups of persons about whose opinion he cares. He generally shows a different side of himself to each of these different groups.
William James
You’re only responsible for yourself, Jess. And that’s the only person you can control. Other people will either get it or they won’t but you can’t define yourself by their opinions.
Susan Mallery (Sweet Trouble (Bakery Sisters, #3))
I couldn’t trust my own emotions. Which emotional reactions were justified, if any? And which ones were tainted by the mental illness of BPD? I found myself fiercely guarding and limiting my emotional reactions, chastising myself for possible distortions and motivations. People who had known me years ago would barely recognize me now. I had become quiet and withdrawn in social settings, no longer the life of the party. After all, how could I know if my boisterous humor were spontaneous or just a borderline desire to be the center of attention? I could no longer trust any of my heart felt beliefs and opinions on politics, religion, or life. The debate queen had withered. I found myself looking at every single side of an issue unable to come to any conclusions for fear they might be tainted. My lifelong ability to be assertive had turned into a constant state of passivity.
Rachel Reiland (Get Me Out of Here: My Recovery from Borderline Personality Disorder)
People talk about the happy quiet that can exist between two loves, but this, too, was great; sitting between his sister and his brother, saying nothing, eating. Before the world existed, before it was populated, and before there were wars and jobs and colleges and movies and clothes and opinions and foreign travel -- before all of these things there had been only one person, Zora, and only one place: a tent in the living room made from chairs and bed-sheets. After a few years, Levi arrived; space was made for him; it was as if he had always been. Looking at them both now, Jerome found himself in their finger joints and neat conch ears, in their long legs and wild curls. He heard himself in their partial lisps caused by puffy tongues vibrating against slightly noticeable buckteeth. He did not consider if or how or why he loved them. They were just love: they were the first evidence he ever had of love, and they would be the last confirmation of love when everything else fell away.
Zadie Smith (On Beauty)
Sometimes you can’t figure out the truth because you’re asking people that are emotionally or socially invested in you to be brutally honest. Often family or friends will tell you what you want to hear, or what they want to believe because of their emotional investment in the situation. Instead of circling the drain with biased speculation, go out and get twenty unbiased people that have nothing to lose if they speak their mind and then ask them what they think. After you do that, stop asking for people’s perspectives. Accept their answer because you’re not going to ever know the real truth when the person you love lies to you. Sometimes, you only have the truth of commonsense when the unbiased majority has offered you their opinion. When we care about people, we will believe the most far-fetched fantasies to help us deal with our actions, their actions and the conversations we missed out on. Our intuition then becomes compromised. You should never put your life on hold, in order to decide what the truth is. The memory of truth no longer remains pure in the mind of a liar.
Shannon L. Alder
Don't take anything Personally Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering"
Miguel Ruiz
To think that because those who wield power in society wield in the end that of government, therefore it is of no use to attempt to influence the constitution of the government by acting on opinion, is to forget that opinion is itself one of the greatest active social forces. One person with a belief is a social power equal to ninety-nine who have only interests.
John Stuart Mill (Considerations on Representative Government)
I wasn’t going to let one person’s opinion dislodge everything I thought I knew about myself. Instead, I switched my method without changing my goal.
Michelle Obama (Becoming)
In my humble opinion, love is when a person believes that he, she or it can't live without some other he, she or it...I said believes. No one actually needs another person or another person's live to survive. Love, Lizzie, is when we have irrationally convinced ourselves that we do.
Gabrielle Zevin (Elsewhere)
Each voice carries a portion of value, no matter how unpalatable or distasteful that voice may be: no one person, government, ideology, transnational, or religious institution can own and dominate the whole.
B.W. Powe (Towards a Canada of Light)
To criticize a person for their race is manifestly irrational and ridiculous, but to criticize their religion, that is a right. That is a freedom. The freedom to criticize ideas, any ideas - even if they are sincerely held beliefs - is one of the fundamental freedoms of society. A law which attempts to say you can criticize and ridicule ideas as long as they are not religious ideas is a very peculiar law indeed. It all points to the promotion of the idea that there should be a right not to be offended. But in my view the right to offend is far more important than any right not to be offended. The right to ridicule is far more important to society than any right not to be ridiculed because one in my view represents openness - and the other represents oppression
Rowan Atkinson
Double-knotted to a bedpost, not that it’s any of your business. That boy was always too trusting for his own good. You’d think by now he’d know better. But no. He’s got to be stupid. Personally, I’d tie the bitch up, muzzle her, and ride her around the room with spurs on, but no one ever asks my opinion, do they? No. What do I know? I’m only omniscient. (Savitar)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Dark Side of the Moon (Dark-Hunter, #9; Were-Hunter, #3))
All depression has its roots in self-pity, and all self-pity is rooted in people taking themselves too seriously.” At the time Switters had disputed her assertion. Even at seventeen, he was aware that depression could have chemical causes. “The key word here is roots,” Maestra had countered. “The roots of depression. For most people, self-awareness and self-pity blossom simultaneously in early adolescence. It's about that time that we start viewing the world as something other than a whoop-de-doo playground, we start to experience personally how threatening it can be, how cruel and unjust. At the very moment when we become, for the first time, both introspective and socially conscientious, we receive the bad news that the world, by and large, doesn't give a rat's ass. Even an old tomato like me can recall how painful, scary, and disillusioning that realization was. So, there's a tendency, then, to slip into rage and self-pity, which if indulged, can fester into bouts of depression.” “Yeah but Maestra—” “Don't interrupt. Now, unless someone stronger and wiser—a friend, a parent, a novelist, filmmaker, teacher, or musician—can josh us out of it, can elevate us and show us how petty and pompous and monumentally useless it is to take ourselves so seriously, then depression can become a habit, which, in tern, can produce a neurological imprint. Are you with me? Gradually, our brain chemistry becomes conditioned to react to negative stimuli in a particular, predictable way. One thing'll go wrong and it'll automatically switch on its blender and mix us that black cocktail, the ol’ doomsday daiquiri, and before we know it, we’re soused to the gills from the inside out. Once depression has become electrochemically integrated, it can be extremely difficult to philosophically or psychologically override it; by then it's playing by physical rules, a whole different ball game. That's why, Switters my dearest, every time you've shown signs of feeling sorry for yourself, I've played my blues records really loud or read to you from The Horse’s Mouth. And that’s why when you’ve exhibited the slightest tendency toward self-importance, I’ve reminded you that you and me— you and I: excuse me—may be every bit as important as the President or the pope or the biggest prime-time icon in Hollywood, but none of us is much more than a pimple on the ass-end of creation, so let’s not get carried away with ourselves. Preventive medicine, boy. It’s preventive medicine.” “But what about self-esteem?” “Heh! Self-esteem is for sissies. Accept that you’re a pimple and try to keep a lively sense of humor about it. That way lies grace—and maybe even glory.
Tom Robbins (Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates)
The things people say of a man do not alter a man. He is what he is. Public opinion is of no value whatsoever. Even if people employ actual violence, they are not to be violent in turn. That would be to fall to the same low level. After all, even in prison, a man can be quite free. His soul can be free. His personality can be untroubled. He can be at peace. And, above all things, they are not to interfere with other people or judge them in any way. Personality is a very mysterious thing. A man cannot always be estimated by what he does. He may keep the law, and yet be worthless. He may break the law, and yet be fine. He may be bad, without ever doing anything bad. He may commit a sin against society, and yet realize through that sin his true perfection.
Oscar Wilde (The Soul of Man Under Socialism)
But feelings, no matter how strong or “ugly,” are not a part of who you are. They are the radio stations your mind listens to if you don’t give it something better to do. Feelings are fluid and dynamic; they change frequently. Feelings are something you HAVE, not something you ARE. Like physical beauty, a cold sore, or an opinion. Admitting you feel rage or terrible pain or regret or some old, rotten blame does not mean these feelings are part of who you are as a person. What these feelings mean is, you have to change your thinking to be free of them.
Augusten Burroughs (This Is How: Proven Aid in Overcoming Shyness, Molestation, Fatness, Spinsterhood, Grief, Disease, Lushery, Decrepitude & More. For Young and Old Alike.)
It's saying no. That's your first hint that something's alive. It says no. That's how you know a baby is starting to turn into a person. They run around saying no all day, throwing their aliveness at everything to see what it'll stick to. You can't say no if you don't have desires and opinions and wants of your own. You wouldn't even want to. No is the heart of thinking.
Catherynne M. Valente (The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two (Fairyland, #3))
the only way in which a human being can make some approach to knowing the whole of a subject, is by hearing what can be said about it by persons of every variety of opinion, and studying all modes in which it can be looked at by every character of mind. No wise man ever acquired his wisdom in any mode but this; nor is it in the nature of human intellect to become wise in any other manner.
John Stuart Mill (On Liberty)
I hate that you let other people's opinion influence you, especially if their delusional.
Elizabeth Eulberg (Revenge of the Girl with the Great Personality)
I am astonished at the ease with which uninformed persons come to a settled, a passionate opinion when they have no grounds for judgment.
William Golding
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 — 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.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
Living on the streets of London strips away your dignity, your identity − your everything, really. Worst of all, it strips away people’s opinion of you. They see you are living on the streets and treat you as a non-person. They don’t want anything to do with you. Soon you haven’t got a real friend in the world.
James Bowen (A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life)
4. Religion. Your reason is now mature enough to examine this object. In the first place, divest yourself of all bias in favor of novelty & singularity of opinion... shake off all the fears & servile prejudices, under which weak minds are servilely crouched. Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call to her tribunal every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear. You will naturally examine first, the religion of your own country. Read the Bible, then as you would read Livy or Tacitus. The facts which are within the ordinary course of nature, you will believe on the authority of the writer, as you do those of the same kind in Livy and Tacitus. The testimony of the writer weighs in their favor, in one scale, and their not being against the laws of nature, does not weigh against them. But those facts in the Bible which contradict the laws of nature, must be examined with more care, and under a variety of faces. Here you must recur to the pretensions of the writer to inspiration from God. Examine upon what evidence his pretensions are founded, and whether that evidence is so strong, as that its falsehood would be more improbable than a change in the laws of nature, in the case he relates. For example in the book of Joshua we are told the sun stood still several hours. Were we to read that fact in Livy or Tacitus we should class it with their showers of blood, speaking of statues, beasts, &c. But it is said that the writer of that book was inspired. Examine therefore candidly what evidence there is of his having been inspired. The pretension is entitled to your inquiry, because millions believe it. On the other hand you are astronomer enough to know how contrary it is to the law of nature that a body revolving on its axis as the earth does, should have stopped, should not by that sudden stoppage have prostrated animals, trees, buildings, and should after a certain time have resumed its revolution, & that without a second general prostration. Is this arrest of the earth's motion, or the evidence which affirms it, most within the law of probabilities? You will next read the New Testament. It is the history of a personage called Jesus. Keep in your eye the opposite pretensions: 1, of those who say he was begotten by God, born of a virgin, suspended & reversed the laws of nature at will, & ascended bodily into heaven; and 2, of those who say he was a man of illegitimate birth, of a benevolent heart, enthusiastic mind, who set out without pretensions to divinity, ended in believing them, and was punished capitally for sedition, by being gibbeted, according to the Roman law, which punished the first commission of that offence by whipping, & the second by exile, or death in fureâ. ...Do not be frightened from this inquiry by any fear of its consequences. If it ends in a belief that there is no God, you will find incitements to virtue in the comfort and pleasantness you feel in its exercise, and the love of others which it will procure you... In fine, I repeat, you must lay aside all prejudice on both sides, and neither believe nor reject anything, because any other persons, or description of persons, have rejected or believed it... I forgot to observe, when speaking of the New Testament, that you should read all the histories of Christ, as well of those whom a council of ecclesiastics have decided for us, to be Pseudo-evangelists, as those they named Evangelists. Because these Pseudo-evangelists pretended to inspiration, as much as the others, and you are to judge their pretensions by your own reason, and not by the reason of those ecclesiastics. Most of these are lost... [Letter to his nephew, Peter Carr, advising him in matters of religion, 1787]
Thomas Jefferson (Letters of Thomas Jefferson)
If you must take care that your opinions do not differ in the least from those of the person with whom you are talking, you might just as well be alone.
Yoshida Kenkō (Essays in Idleness: The Tsurezuregusa of Kenkō)
The humble person is open to being corrected, whereas the arrogant is clearly closed to it. Proud people are supremely confident in their own opinions and insights. No one can admonish them successfully: not a peer, not a local superior, not even the pope himself. They know - and that is the end of the matter. Filled as they are with their own views, the arrogant lack the capacity to see another view.
Thomas Dubay
Taking things personally makes you easy prey for these predators, the black magicians. They can hook you easily with one little opinion and feed you whatever poison they want, and because you take it personally, you eat it up. You eat all their emotional garbage, and now it becomes your garbage. But if you do not take it personally, you are immune in the middle of hell. Immunity to poison in the middle of hell is the gift of this agreement.
Miguel Ruiz (The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom)
Self-leaders are still true leaders even if they have no known followers. True leaders inspire by the influence of their characters and general self-made brands. Leadership is defined by the virtues of one's behaviour.
Israelmore Ayivor
Disagreement is part of being a person who has choices. One of those choices is to respect others and engage in intelligent conversation about differences of opinion without becoming enemies, eventually allowing us to move forward to compromise.
Ben Carson (One Nation: What We Can All Do to Save America's Future)
[L]asting love is something a person has to decide to experience. Lifelong monogamous devotion is just not natural—not for women even, and emphatically not for men. It requires what, for lack of a better term, we can call an act of will. . . . This isn't to say that a young man can't hope to be seized by love. . . . But whether the sheer fury of a man's feelings accurately gauges their likely endurance is another question. The ardor will surely fade, sooner or later, and the marriage will then live or die on respect, practical compatibility, simple affection, and (these days, especially) determination. With the help of these things, something worthy of the label 'love' can last until death. But it will be a different kind of love from the kind that began the marriage. Will it be a richer love, a deeper love, a more spiritual love? Opinions vary. But it's certainly a more impressive love.
Robert Wright (The Moral Animal: Why We Are the Way We Are - The New Science of Evolutionary Psychology)
The pain of the narcissist is that, to him, everything is really a threat. What doesn't surrender in reverence is blasphemous to a high opinion of oneself - the burden of self-importance. The narcissist reconstructs his own law of gravity which states that all things and all creatures must adhere to his personal satisfaction, but when they do not, the pain is far more intense than it is for one who is free from the clamors of 'I'.
Criss Jami (Killosophy)
One person with commitment accomplishes more than a thousand with an opinion.
Orrin Woodward (LIFE)
I am of the considered opinion that for every person, there exists a book that will sing to them. I trust that you will find yours.
Samantha Shannon (The Mask Falling (The Bone Season, #4))
In my opinion, the best thing you can do is find a person who loves you for exactly what you are. Good mood, bad mood, ugly, pretty, handsome, what have you, the right person will still think the sun shines out your ass. That's the kind of person that's worth sticking with.
Diablo Cody (Juno: The Shooting Script)
If you are a warrior, decency means that you are not cheating anybody at all. You are not even about to cheat anybody. There is a sense of straightforwardness and simplicity. With setting-sun vision, or vision based on cowardice, straightforwardness is always a problem. If people have some story or news to tell somebody else, first of all they are either excited or disappointed. Then they begin to figure out how to tell their news. They develop a plan, which leads them completely away from simply telling it. By the time a person hears the news, it is not news at all, but opinion. It becomes a message of some kind, rather than fresh, straightforward news. Decency is the absence of strategy. It is of utmost importance to realize that the warrior’s approach should be simple-minded sometimes, very simple and straightforward. That makes it very beautiful: you having nothing up your sleeve; therefore a sense of genuineness comes through. That is decency.
Chögyam Trungpa
While public opinion might sway back and forth, right and wrong do not.
Andy Andrews (The Traveler's Gift: Seven Decisions that Determine Personal Success)
We awaken by asking the right questions. We awaken when we see knowledge being spread that goes against our own personal experiences. We awaken when we see popular opinion being wrong but accepted as being right, and what is right being pushed as being wrong. We awaken by seeking answers in corners that are not popular. And we awaken by turning on the light inside when everything outside feels dark.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
To be accountable means that we are willing to be responsible to another person for our behavior and it implies a level of submission to another's opinions and viewpoints.
Wayde Goodall (Why Great Men Fall: 15 Winning Strategies to Rise Above It All)
Sometimes, when people have a low opinion of their own worth—or, perhaps, when they refuse responsibility for their lives—they choose a new acquaintance, of precisely the type who proved troublesome in the past. Such people don’t believe that they deserve any better—so they don’t go looking for it. Or, perhaps, they don’t want the trouble of better. Freud called this a “repetition compulsion.” He thought of it as an unconscious drive to repeat the horrors of the past—sometimes, perhaps, to formulate those horrors more precisely, sometimes to attempt more active mastery and sometimes, perhaps, because no alternatives beckon. People create their worlds with the tools they have directly at hand. Faulty tools produce faulty results. Repeated use of the same faulty tools produces the same faulty results. It is in this manner that those who fail to learn from the past doom themselves to repeat it. It’s partly fate. It’s partly inability. It’s partly … unwillingness to learn? Refusal to learn? Motivated refusal to learn?
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
So that in the nature of man, we find three principal causes of quarrel: First, Competition; Secondly, Dissidence; Thirdly, Glory. The first, maketh men invade for Gain; the second, for Safety; and the third, for Reputation. The first use Violence, to make themselves Masters of other men's persons, wives, children and cattle; the second, to defend them; the third, for trifles, as a word, a smile, a different opinion, and any other sign of undervalue, either direct in their Persons, or by reflexion in their Kindred, their Friends, their Nation, their Profession, or their Name.
Thomas Hobbes (Leviathan)
When anyone tells me that he saw a dead man restored to life, I immediately consider with myself whether it be more probable that this person should either deceive or be deceived or that the fact which he relates should really have happened. I weigh the one miracle against the other and according to the superiority which I discover, I pronounce my decision. Always I reject the greater miracle. If the falsehood of his testimony would be more miraculous than the event which he relates, then and not till then, can he pretend to command my belief or opinion.
David Hume
Most people, in my opinion, steal much of what they are. If they didn't what poor items they would be.
Julian Barnes (England, England)
Bad dogs, she believed, were like most bad children: created by those around them. But then, that was a personal opinion.
Heather Graham (Dust to Dust (Prophecy, #1))
Read things you're sure will disagree with your current thinking. If you're a die-hard anti-animal person, read Meat. If you're a die-hard global warming advocate, read Glenn Beck. If you're a Rush Limbaugh fan, read James W. Loewen's Lies My Teachers Told Me. It'll do your mind good and get your heart rate up.
Joel Salatin (Folks, This Ain't Normal: A Farmer's Advice for Happier Hens, Healthier People, and a Better World)
The Japanese fought to win - it was a savage, brutal, inhumane, exhausting and dirty business. Our commanders knew that if we were to win and survive, we must be trained realistically for it whether we liked it or not. In the post-war years, the U.S. Marine Corps came in for a great deal of undeserved criticism in my opinion, from well-meaning persons who did not comprehend the magnitude of stress and horror that combat can be. The technology that developed the rifle barrel, the machine gun and high explosive shells has turned war into prolonged, subhuman slaughter. Men must be trained realistically if they are to survive it without breaking, mentally and physically.
Eugene B. Sledge (With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa)
There are certain truths that occurs to us, which we cannot convey in words, but requires a personal experience to grasp more vividly.
Michael Bassey Johnson
She tries to be a good person. But deep down she knows she is a bad person, corrupted, wrong, and all her efforts to be right, to have the right opinions, to say the right things, these efforts only disguise what is buried inside her, the evil part of herself.
Sally Rooney (Normal People)
Occasionally, something will happen that will change your opinion of someone irrevocably, that will shatter the ideal you’ve built up around a person and force you to see them for the fallible and human creature they really are.
Marilyn Manson (The Long Hard Road Out of Hell)
Until every soul is freely permitted to investigate every book, and creed, and dogma for itself, the world cannot be free. Mankind will be enslaved until there is mental grandeur enough to allow each man to have his thought and say. This earth will be a paradise when men can, upon all these questions differ, and yet grasp each other's hands as friends. It is amazing to me that a difference of opinion upon subjects that we know nothing with certainty about, should make us hate, persecute, and despise each other. Why a difference of opinion upon predestination, or the trinity, should make people imprison and burn each other seems beyond the comprehension of man; and yet in all countries where Christians have existed, they have destroyed each other to the exact extent of their power. Why should a believer in God hate an atheist? Surely the atheist has not injured God, and surely he is human, capable of joy and pain, and entitled to all the rights of man. Would it not be far better to treat this atheist, at least, as well as he treats us? Christians tell me that they love their enemies, and yet all I ask is—not that they love their enemies, not that they love their friends even, but that they treat those who differ from them, with simple fairness. We do not wish to be forgiven, but we wish Christians to so act that we will not have to forgive them. If all will admit that all have an equal right to think, then the question is forever solved; but as long as organized and powerful churches, pretending to hold the keys of heaven and hell, denounce every person as an outcast and criminal who thinks for himself and denies their authority, the world will be filled with hatred and suffering. To hate man and worship God seems to be the sum of all the creeds.
Robert G. Ingersoll (Some Mistakes of Moses)
You are no longer responsible for anyone's opinion. You have no need to control anyone, and no one controls you either... You don't need to be right and you don't need to make anyone else wrong...you are no longer afraid of being rejected, and you don't have the need to be accepted...you can walk into the world with your heart completely open, and not be afraid to be hurt.
Miguel Ruiz (The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom)
As adults we choose our own reading material. Depending on our moods and needs we might read the newspaper, a blockbuster novel, an academic article, a women's magazine, a comic, a children's book, or the latest book that just about everyone is reading. No one chastises us for our choice. No one says, 'That's too short for you to read.' No one says, 'That's too easy for you, put it back.' No one says 'You couldn't read that if you tried -- it's much too difficult.' Yet if we take a peek into classrooms, libraries, and bookshops we will notice that children's choices are often mocked, censured, and denied as valid by idiotic, interfering teachers, librarians, and parents. Choice is a personal matter that changes with experience, changes with mood, and changes with need. We should let it be.
Mem Fox (Radical Reflections: Passionate Opinions on Teaching, Learning, and Living)
Invalidating someone else is not merely disagreeing with something that the other person said. It is a process in which individuals communicate to another that the opinions and emotions of the target are invalid, irrational, selfish, uncaring, stupid, most likely insane, and wrong, wrong, wrong. Invalidators let it be known directly or indirectly that their targets views and feelings do not count for anything to anybody at any time or in any way.
David M. Allen
It's one thing to give out excellent advice, but quite another to personally swallow it.
Richelle E. Goodrich (Smile Anyway: Quotes, Verse, and Grumblings for Every Day of the Year)
There is an almost universal tendency, perhaps an inborn tendency, to suspect the good faith of a man who holds opinions that differ from our own opinions. … It obviously endangers the freedom and the objectivity of our discussion if we attack a person instead of attacking an opinion or, more precisely, a theory.
Karl Popper
It doesn’t matter what other people think. The only opinion that really matters is yours. We are all the writers of our lives. We can make our stories comedies or tragedies. Tales of horror, or of inspiration. Your attitude and your fortitude and courage are what determine your destiny, Nick.… Life is hard and it sucks for all. Every person you meet is waging his or her own war against a callous universe that is plotting against them. And we are all battle-weary. But in the midst of our hell, there is always something we can hold on to, whether it’s a dream of the future or a memory of the past, or a warm hand that soothes us. We just have to take a moment during the fight to remember that we’re not alone, and that we’re not just fighting for ourselves. We’re fighting for the people we love.” -- Acheron
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Inferno (Chronicles of Nick, #4))
Self-leaders do not look for followers because they are busily pursuing their influencial dreams that followers will trace and ask for. Followers look for influence and that can be obtained from self-leaders.
Israelmore Ayivor
The fact is that everyone is much too busily preoccupied with himself to be able to form a serious opinion about another person. The indolent world is all too ready to treat any man with whatever degree of respect corresponds to his own self-confidence.
Thomas Mann (Death in Venice and Other Tales)
Pride is a very common failing, I believe. By all that I have ever read, I am convinced that it is very common indeed, that human nature is particularly prone to it, and that there are very few of us who do not cherish a feeling of self-complacency on the score of some quality or other, real or imaginary. Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what would have others think of us.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
You arranged everything according to your own taste, and so I got the same tastes as you - or else I pretended to. I am really not quite sure which - I think sometimes the one and sometimes the other.
Henrik Ibsen (A Doll's House)
You want the freedom to sleep around. I'm not willing to give you that. I want more. Sounds like we have a fundamental difference of opinion here, and I'm not going to try and change you. But I'll tell you one thing, Ruger- I deserve to be with someone who gives a shit about me, as a person. Someone who values me enough not to fuck other women. I'd rather be alone the rest of my life than settle for what you're offering. Consider yourself a hell of a booty call, but that's it. We clear?
Joanna Wylde (Reaper's Legacy (Reapers MC, #2))
Altered opinions do not alter a man’s character (or do so very little); but they do illuminate individual aspects of the constellation of his personality which with a different constellation of opinions had hitherto remained dark and unrecognizable.
Friedrich Nietzsche (A Nietzsche Reader)
You can never get to a person's mind. You cannot know the different deeds and missions of happiness; you can't tell a screm of pleasure from one of pain. Sometimes, we can barely read pain. Neither a barometer nor a guide, pain can mislead us. Even in the body, the laws of chain reactions can be false. This is why people always want a second opinion.
Ibi Kaslik (Skinny)
The import is not the kind of work woman does, but rather the quality of the work she furnishes. She can give suffrage or the ballot no new quality, nor can she receive anything from it that will enhance her own quality. Her development, her freedom, her independence, must come from and through herself. First, by asserting herself as a personality, and not as a sex commodity. Second, by refusing the right to anyone over her body; by refusing to bear children, unless she wants them; by refusing to be a servant to God, the State, society, the husband, the family, etc., by making her life simpler, but deeper and richer. That is, by trying to learn the meaning and substance of life in all its complexities, by freeing herself from the fear of public opinion and public condemnation. Only that, and not the ballot, will set woman free, will maker her a force hitherto unknown in the world, a force for real love, for peace, for harmony; a force of divine fire, of life-giving; a creator of free men and women. from Woman Suffrage- 1910
Emma Goldman (Anarchism and Other Essays)
Why do you want a letter from me? Why don't you take the trouble to find out for yourselves what Christianity is? You take time to learn technical terms about electricity. Why don't you do as much for theology? Why do you never read the great writings on the subject, but take your information from the secular 'experts' who have picked it up as inaccurately as you? Why don't you learn the facts in this field as honestly as your own field? Why do you accept mildewed old heresies as the language of the church, when any handbook on church history will tell you where they came from? Why do you balk at the doctrine of the Trinity - God the three in One - yet meekly acquiesce when Einstein tells you E=mc2? What makes you suppose that the expression "God ordains" is narrow and bigoted, while your own expression, "Science demands" is taken as an objective statement of fact? You would be ashamed to know as little about internal combustion as you know about Christian beliefs. I admit, you can practice Christianity without knowing much theology, just as you can drive a car without knowing much about internal combustion. But when something breaks down in the car, you go humbly to the man who understands the works; whereas if something goes wrong with religion, you merely throw the works away and tell the theologian he is a liar. Why do you want a letter from me telling you about God? You will never bother to check on it or find out whether I'm giving you personal opinions or Christian doctrines. Don't bother. Go away and do some work and let me get on with mine.
Dorothy L. Sayers
Maybe you lost someone you never expected you would lose. Maybe you lost yourself. That’s even worse. When you have bad days that just won’t let up, I just hope that you will look in the mirror and remind yourself of what you are and what you are not. You are not your mistakes. You are not damaged goods or money from your failed explorations. You are not the opinion of someone who doesn’t know you. You are a product of the lessons that you’ve learned. You are wiser because you went through something terrible. And you are the person who survived a bunch of rainstorms and kept walking. I now believe that pain makes you stronger. And now I believe that walking through a lot of rainstorms gets you clean.
Taylor Swift
Love requires courage, persistence, and maintenance. Love just doesn’t lie there with us as we live our lives, and engulf us, providing us with an assurance that it exists.” “Love is developed, and it is never perfect. We, as people, are flawed. Therefore, love is flawed. Most people live their lives trying to find the perfect person to provide them what they believe to be the perfect love. In my opinion, people should find someone that provides them with affection, someone that makes them feel, then develop and maintain the perfect love. That is the closest thing to real love that could ever possibly exist,
Scott Hildreth (Baby Girl (Erik Ead Trilogy, #1))
There is nothing gutsier to me than a person announcing that their story is one that deserves to be told, especially if that person is a woman. As hard as we have worked and as far as we have come, there are still so many forces conspiring to tell women that our concerns are petty, our opinions aren’t needed, that we lack the gravitas necessary for our stories to matter. That personal writing by women is no more than an exercise in vanity and that we should appreciate this new world for women, sit down, and shut up.
Lena Dunham (Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She's "Learned")
If anything, his personality seemed like something external to himself, managed by the opinions of others, rather than anything he individually did or produced. Now he has a sense of invisibility, nothingness, with no reputation to recommend him to anyone.
Sally Rooney (Normal People)
... But I'm annoying you to no purpose with my arguments. A person whose house is only open on the west can't see the sun rise at dawn; it's only seen when the sun sets at dusk. If one tries to compare the color and appearance of the two, one will go on arguing forever... ...The fault lies not with the vision but with the closed windows. If you look out of only one opening till the day you die, you'll ever see anything new.
Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay
I can tell by my own reaction to it that this book is harmful." But let him only wait and perhaps one day he will admit to himself that this same book has done him a great service by bringing out the hidden sickness of his heart and making it visible.— Altered opinions do not alter a man’s character (or do so very little); but they do illuminate individual aspects of the constellation of his personality which with a different constellation of opinions had hitherto remained dark and unrecognizable.
Friedrich Nietzsche
This is listening as a martial art, balancing the subtle behaviors of emotional intelligence and the assertive skills of influence, to gain access to the mind of another person. Contrary to popular opinion, listening is not a passive activity. It is the most active thing you can do. Once
Chris Voss (Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It)
To be beautiful, handsome, means that you possess a power which makes all smile upon and welcome you; that everybody is impressed in your favor and inclined to be of your opinion; that you have only to pass through a street or to show yourself at a balcony to make friends and to win mistresses from among those who look upon you. What a splendid, what a magnificent gift is that which spares you the need to be amiable in order to be loved, which relieves you of the need of being clever and ready to serve, which you must be if ugly, and enables you to dispense with the innumerable moral qualities which you must possess in order to make up for the lack of personal beauty.
Théophile Gautier (Mademoiselle de Maupin)
Humanity is not an aggregate of individuals, a community of thinkers, each of whom is guaranteed from the outset to be able to reach agreement with the others because all participate in the same thinking essence. Nor, of course, is it a single Being in which the multiplicity of individuals are dissolved and into which these individuals are destined to be reabsorbed. As a matter of principle, humanity is precarious: each person can only believe what he recognizes to be true internally and, at the same time, nobody thinks or makes up his mind without already being caught up in certain relationships with others, which leads him to opt for a particular set of opinions. Everyone is alone and yet nobody can do without other people, not just because they are useful (which is not in dispute here) but also when it comes to happiness.
Maurice Merleau-Ponty (The World of Perception)
You will find that people will always have opinions about your decisions. Don’t take it personally, it’s simply because they're not courageous enough to take action in their own lives. Be a leader in your life and pay no mind to those who lack the courage to do the same in theirs.
Steve Maraboli (Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience)
It is a new step towards independence, once a man dares to express opinions that bring disgrace on him if he entertains them; then even his friends and acquaintances begin to grow anxious. The man of talent must pass through this fire, too; afterwards he is much more his own person.
Friedrich Nietzsche (Human, All Too Human: A Book for Free Spirits)
I guess each of us, at some time, finds one person with whom we are compelled towards absolute honesty, one person whose good opinion of us becomes a substitute for the broader opinion of the world. And that opinion becomes more important than all our sneaky, sleazy schemes of greed, lust, self-aggrandizement, whatever we are up to while lying the world into believing we are just plain nice folks.
Glen Cook (Shadow Games (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #4))
The realization that my problem was one that concerned all men, a problem of living and thinking, suddenly swept over me and I was overwhelmed by fear and respect as I suddenly saw and felt how deeply my own personal life and opinions were immersed in the eternal stream of great ideas. Though it offered some confirmation and gratification, the realization was not really a joyful one. It was hard and had a harsh taste because it implied responsibility and no longer being allowed to be a child; it meant standing on one’s own feet.
Hermann Hesse (Demian: Die Geschichte von Emil Sinclairs Jugend)
Even when a situation seems so personal, even if others insult you directly, it has nothing to do with you. What they say, what they do, and the opinions they give are according to the agreements they have in their own minds. Their point of view comes from all the programming they received during domestication.
Miguel Ruiz (The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom)
A conversation in which the two parties have different beliefs should never begin with the intention of converting the other party to your own beliefs. Every worthwhile conversation's goal should be to understand the other person's opinions and help them understand your own.
Emily Eskowich
I think, quite frankly, that the world simply does not care for the complicated girls, the ones who seem too dark, too deep, too vibrant, too opinionated, the ones who are so intriguing that new men fall in love with them every day, at every meal where there's a waiter, in every taxi and on every train they board, in any instance where someone can get to know them just a little bit, just enough to get completely gone. But most men in the end don't quite have the stomach for that much person.
Elizabeth Wurtzel (Bitch: In Praise of Difficult Women)
In my opinion, if 100% of the people were farming it would be ideal. If each person were given one quarter-acre, that is 1 1/4 acres to a family of five, that would be more than enough land to support the family for the whole year. If natural farming were practiced, a farmer would also have plenty of time for leisure and social activities within the village community. I think this is the most direct path toward making this country a happy, pleasant land.
Masanobu Fukuoka (The One-Straw Revolution)
I'm convinced that this anxiety running through my life is the tension between what I "should be" and what i am. My anxiety doesn't come from thinking about the future but from wanting to control it. It seems to begin whenever I smuggle into my mind an expectation about how I or others should be. It is the tension between my desire to control the world and the recognition that I can't. "I will be what I will be" - where is the anxiety in that ? Anxiety is the recognition that I might not reach the rung on the opinion ladder I have just set for my self. I fear death most when I am about to exceed what I believe others think of me; then death threatens to cut me off from myself, because "myself" is not yet.
Hugh Prather (Notes to Myself: My Struggle to Become a Person)
PRINCIPLE 1 The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it. PRINCIPLE 2 Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Never say, “You’re wrong.” PRINCIPLE 3 If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically. PRINCIPLE 4 Begin in a friendly way. PRINCIPLE 5 Get the other person saying “yes, yes” immediately. PRINCIPLE 6 Let the other person do a great deal of the talking. PRINCIPLE 7 Let the other person feel that the idea
Dale Carnegie (How to Win Friends & Influence People)
I never ask my wife about my flaws. Instead I try to get her to ignore them and concentrate on my sense of humor. You don't want any woman to look under the carpet, guys, because there's lots of flaws underneath. Joanne believes my character in a film we did together, 'Mr. and Mrs. Bridge' comes closest to who I really am. I personally don't think there's one character who comes close . . . but I learned a long time ago not to disagree on things that I don't have a solid opinion about.
Paul Newman
Rukia, let me ask you something. From your experience where do you think your heart is?" "um well if I had to guess I think somewhere around here isn't that right?" "If you want to be literal about it. But in my opinion it's more a state of mind. I believe its right here, not inside our bodies at all. I think a heart is created between people when they meet for the first time, a bond that's brought to life between individuals. It's an emotional connection, when you think about something or care about someone, that's where your heart is born. If you were the only person that existed in this world, your heart would have no way of forming so it just wouldn't be anywhere. There's nothing to worry about Rukia. If you believe with all of your heart that you belong here, then this is where you'll stay. If your heart is here then that's all the reason in the world you need to be here. You must never doubt that. But listen Rukia, in the fights to come, there's something I must warn you about. Something you must promise me you will never ever do. I mean this. You must never die alone. Our souls are our bodies and when we die our bodies turn to dust and become the reishi that go on to form the soul society, but where do our hearts go? We entrust our hearts to our friends. If you entrust your heart to your friends it will continue to live on inside them. That's the most important thing you'll learn from my training. Don't you dare die alone Rukia.
Tite Kubo
LADY BRACKNELL. May I ask if it is in this house that your invalid friend Mr. Bunbury resides? ALGERNON. [Stammering.] Oh! No! Bunbury doesn't live here. Bunbury is somewhere else at present. In fact, Bunbury is dead, LADY BRACKNELL. Dead! When did Mr. Bunbury die? His death must have been extremely sudden. ALGERNON. [Airily.] Oh! I killed Bunbury this afternoon. I mean poor Bunbury died this afternoon. LADY BRACKNELL. What did he die of? ALGERNON. Bunbury? Oh, he was quite exploded. LADY BRACKNELL. Exploded! Was he the victim of a revolutionary outrage? I was not aware that Mr. Bunbury was interested in social legislation. If so, he is well punished for his morbidity. ALGERNON. My dear Aunt Augusta, I mean he was found out! The doctors found out that Bunbury could not live, that is what I mean - so Bunbury died. LADY BRACKNELL. He seems to have had great confidence in the opinion of his physicians. I am glad, however, that he made up his mind at the last to some definite course of action, and acted under proper medical advice. And now that we have finally got rid of this Mr. Bunbury, may I ask, Mr. Worthing, who is that young person whose hand my nephew Algernon is now holding in what seems to me a peculiarly unnecessary manner?
Oscar Wilde (The Importance of Being Earnest)
Change is actually what you need to avoid. Assimilation is much more joyful than conformity, when you try to change you try to fit yourself to other people's standards. You deny your own values and opinions, and you adopt a personality that isn't you. And most likely you will be more uncomfortable even though it may seem like you fit in more, i would suggest you not to change. Just be yourself, the way you are. Because that's what makes you different and distinguishable and unique from every other individual.
Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn Monroe Quotes vol 1)
I learned that effective communication starts with the understanding that there is MY point of view, (my truth), and someone else's point of view (his truth). Rarely is there one absolute truth, so people who believe that they speak THE truth are very silencing of others. When we realize and recognize that we can see things only from our own perspective, we can share our views in a nonthreatening way. Statements of opinion are always more constructive in the first person "I" form. The ability to listen is as important as the ability to speak. Miscommunication is always a two way street.
Sheryl Sandberg (Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead)
In his article, Bogen concluded: “I believe [with Wigan] that each of us has two minds in one person. There is a host of detail to be marshaled in this case. But we must eventually confront directly the principal resistance to the Wigan view: that is, the subjective feeling possessed by each of us that we are One. This inner conviction of Oneness is a most cherished opinion of Western Man. . . .
Philip K. Dick (A Scanner Darkly)
...You can have this whole entire life, with all your opinions, your loves, your fears. Eventually those parts of you disappear. And then the people who could remember those parts of you disappear, and before long, all that's left is your name in some ledger. This...person -- she had a favorite food. She had friends and people she disliked. We don't even know how she died...I guess that's why I like preservation better than history. In preservation I feel like I can keep some of it from slipping away.
Katherine Howe (The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane (The Physick Book, #1))
In my parents' day and age, it used to be the person who fell short. Now it's the discipline. Reading the classics is too difficult, therefore it's the classics that are to blame. Today the student asserts his incapacity as a privilege. I can't learn it, so there is something wrong with it. And there is something especially wrong with the bad teacher who wants to teach it. There are no more criteria, Mr. Zuckerman, only opinions.
Philip Roth (The Human Stain (The American Trilogy, #3))
His training had a fatal flaw: he cared. He asked me what I wanted to eat for dinner. He knew I liked green, and if he had a choice between a blue sweater and a green one, he’d buy the green one for me even if it cost more. I like swimming, and when we traveled, he made it a point to lay our route so it would go past a lake or a river. He let me speak my mind. My opinion mattered. I was a person to him and I was important. I saw him treat others as if they were important. For all of his supposed indifference, there is a town in Oklahoma that worships him and a little village in Guatemala that put a wooden statue of him at the gates to protect them from evil spirits. He helped people, when he thought it was right.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Strikes (Kate Daniels, #3))
[There's] one... thing I can tell you about human nature: beautiful people are the last ones you want to befriend. Beautiful people float through life thinking that it's perfectly normal for others to gaze at them adoringly, and open doors for them, and defer to their opinion... Doesn't anyone understand that beautiful people are stupid? That's why nature made them beautiful, so they'd have a chance at surviving in the wild. And how do they survive? They use people and then they drop people, and they float away on the currents of their own gorgeousness to the next poor girl who thinks that being friends with a beutiful person will somehow make her beautiful, too. I've got news for you: Hanging around beautiful people just makes you uglier by comparison.
Amy Kathleen Ryan (Vibes)
...each living creature is said to be alive and to be the same individual-- as for example someone is said to be the same person from when he is a child until he comes to be an old man. And yet, if he's called the same, that's despite the fact that he's never made up from the same things, but is always being renewed, and losing what he had before, whether it's hair, or flesh, or bones, or blood, in fact the whole body. And don't suppose that this is just true in the case of the body; in the case of the soul, too, its traits, habits, opinions, desires, pleasures, pains, fears-- none of these things is ever the same in any individual, but some are coming into existence, others passing away.
Plato (The Symposium)
the women and men I interviewed who had the strongest sense of true belonging stayed zoomed in. They didn’t ignore what was happening in the world, nor did they stop advocating for their beliefs. They did, however, commit to assessing their lives and forming their opinions of people based on their actual, in-person experiences. They worked against the trap that most of us have fallen into: I can hate large groups of strangers, because the members of those groups who I happen to know and like are the rare exceptions.
Brené Brown (Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone)
Pride," observed Mary, who piqued herself upon the solidity of her reflections, "is a very common failing, I believe. By all that I have ever read, I am convinced that it it very common indeed; that human nature is particularly prone to it, and that there are very few of us who do not cherish a feeling of self-complacency on the score of some quality or the other, real or imaginary. Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have other think of us.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
I openly embrace the label of bad feminist. I do so because I am flawed and human. I am not terribly well versed in feminist history. I am not as well read in key feminist texts as I would like to be. I have certain . . . interests and personality traits and opinions that may not fall in line with mainstream feminism, but I am still a feminist. I cannot tell you how freeing it has been to accept this about myself.
Roxane Gay (Bad Feminist: Essays)
I just make the best book that I can and try to not worry about audience or if it will sell. The odds are against you, so why abuse your talent for the sake of a chimera? The only real pleasure for me in writing comes from pleasing myself. What readers think is interesting and illuminating (and it may even be correct), but that is nothing compared to the excitement of seeing a world develop. Besides, even though I like most individuals I meet, I have a pretty low opinion of people in general. So if I were to write for people in general, I would have to drastically lower my estimation of the intelligence of my reader. Rather than doing that, I write the way it seems the book has to appear. I don’t think that’s egotistic. There are often things I would like to include in my books—things about me personally and other materials—that I feel I have to leave out because they aren’t relevant to the book. I’m fairly ruthless along those lines, because I try to let nothing come in the way of what’s best for the book. If that means that the book won’t sell or that a publisher won’t buy it, then that’s my problem. I’ll suffer for that, but I won’t let the book suffer for it.
William T. Vollmann
The year 2100 will see eugenics universally established. In past ages, the law governing the survival of the fittest roughly weeded out the less desirable strains. Then man's new sense of pity began to interfere with the ruthless workings of nature. As a result, we continue to keep alive and to breed the unfit. The only method compatible with our notions of civilization and the race is to prevent the breeding of the unfit by sterilization and the deliberate guidance of the mating instinct, Several European countries and a number of states of the American Union sterilize the criminal and the insane. This is not sufficient. The trend of opinion among eugenists is that we must make marriage more difficult. Certainly no one who is not a desirable parent should be permitted to produce progeny. A century from now it will no more occur to a normal person to mate with a person eugenically unfit than to marry a habitual criminal.
Nikola Tesla
What is the source of Character Assassination? Jealousy. Jealousy originates from Limitation. A jealous person sees you as having a gift, skill, charisma, talent, or ability that he or she does not have. The mindset of a jealous person is manipulation. How does a Jealous Person manipulate? A Jealous Person controls a group's perception of you, the Gifted Person, by possessing a group's opinion by claiming you are full of fault.
Deborah Bravandt
Who are we without our addictions; without our media-induced hungers? So often the voices we hear echoing in our mind are not our own but that of our influencers. Isolation, while arguably going against human nature, is essential for mental and emotional health. Solitude is a detoxification of all that distorts our personality and misguides our path in life. It allows us to filter out the foreign opinions and hear our own voice—reach our authentic character—and practice fidelity to self.
L.M. Browning (Seasons of Contemplation: A Book of Midnight Meditations)
How To Tell If Somebody Loves You: Somebody loves you if they pick an eyelash off of your face or wet a napkin and apply it to your dirty skin. You didn’t ask for these things, but this person went ahead and did it anyway. They don’t want to see you looking like a fool with eyelashes and crumbs on your face. They notice these things. They really look at you and are the first to notice if something is amiss with your beautiful visage! Somebody loves you if they assume the role of caretaker when you’re sick. Unsure if someone really gives a shit about you? Fake a case of food poisoning and text them being like, “Oh, my God, so sick. Need water.” Depending on their response, you’ll know whether or not they REALLY love you. “That’s terrible. Feel better!” earns you a stay in friendship jail; “Do you need anything? I can come over and bring you get well remedies!” gets you a cozy friendship suite. It’s easy to care about someone when they don’t need you. It’s easy to love them when they’re healthy and don’t ask you for anything beyond change for the parking meter. Being sick is different. Being sick means asking someone to hold your hair back when you vomit. Either love me with vomit in my hair or don’t love me at all. Somebody loves you if they call you out on your bullshit. They’re not passive, they don’t just let you get away with murder. They know you well enough and care about you enough to ask you to chill out, to bust your balls, to tell you to stop. They aren’t passive observers in your life, they are in the trenches. They have an opinion about your decisions and the things you say and do. They want to be a part of it; they want to be a part of you. Somebody loves you if they don’t mind the quiet. They don’t mind running errands with you or cleaning your apartment while blasting some annoying music. There’s no pressure, no need to fill the silences. You know how with some of your friends there needs to be some sort of activity for you to hang out? You don’t feel comfortable just shooting the shit and watching bad reality TV with them. You need something that will keep the both of you busy to ensure there won’t be a void. That’s not love. That’s “Hey, babe! I like you okay. Do you wanna grab lunch? I think we have enough to talk about to fill two hours!" It’s a damn dream when you find someone you can do nothing with. Whether you’re skydiving together or sitting at home and doing different things, it’s always comfortable. That is fucking love. Somebody loves you if they want you to be happy, even if that involves something that doesn’t benefit them. They realize the things you need to do in order to be content and come to terms with the fact that it might not include them. Never underestimate the gift of understanding. When there are so many people who are selfish and equate relationships as something that only must make them happy, having someone around who can take their needs out of any given situation if they need to. Somebody loves you if they can order you food without having to be told what you want. Somebody loves you if they rub your back at any given moment. Somebody loves you if they give you oral sex without expecting anything back. Somebody loves you if they don’t care about your job or how much money you make. It’s a relationship where no one is selling something to the other. No one is the prostitute. Somebody loves you if they’ll watch a movie starring Kate Hudson because you really really want to see it. Somebody loves you if they’re able to create their own separate world with you, away from the internet and your job and family and friends. Just you and them. Somebody will always love you. If you don’t think this is true, then you’re not paying close enough attention.
Ryan O'Connell
Women are all born with a special, independent organ that allows them to lie. This was Dr. Tokai's personal opinion. It depends on the person, he said about the kind of lies they tell, what situation they tell them in, and how the lies are told. But at a certain point in their lives, all women tell lies, and they lie about important things. They lie about unimportant things, too, but they also don't hesitate to lie about the most important things. And when they do, most women's expressions and voices don't change at all, since it's not them lysing, but this independent organ they're equipped with that's acting on its own. That's why - except for a few special cases - they can still have a clear conscience and never lose sleep over anything they say.
Haruki Murakami (Men Without Women)
If the painter has clumsy hands, he will be apt to introduce them into his works, and so of any other part of his person, which may not happen to be so beautiful as it ought to be. He must, therefore, guard particularly against that self-love, or too good opinion of his own person, and study by every means to acquire the knowledge of what is most beautiful, and of his own defects, that he may adopt the one and avoid the other.
Leonardo da Vinci (A Treatise on Painting)
The creator stands on his own judgment. The parasite follows the opinions of others. The creator thinks, the parasite copies. The creator produces, the parasite loots. The creator's concern is the conquest of nature - the parasite's concern is the conquest of men. The creator requires independence, he neither serves nor rules. He deals with men by free exchange and voluntary choice. The parasite seeks power, he wants to bind all men together in common action and common slavery. He claims that man is only a tool for the use of others. That he must think as they think, act as they act, and live is selfless, joyless servitude to any need but his own. Look at history. Everything thing we have, every great achievement has come from the independent work of some independent mind. Every horror and destruction came from attempts to force men into a herd of brainless, soulless robots. Without personal rights, without personal ambition, without will, hope, or dignity. It is an ancient conflict. It has another name: the individual against the collective".
Ayn Rand (The Fountainhead)
Patriotism is a thing difficult to put into words. It is neither precisely an emotion nor an opinion, nor a mandate, but a state of mind -- a reflection of our own personal sense of worth, and respect for our roots. Love of country plays a part, but it's not merely love. Neither is it pride, although pride too is one of the ingredients. Patriotism is a commitment to what is best inside us all. And it's a recognition of that wondrous common essence in our greater surroundings -- our school, team, city, state, our immediate society -- often ultimately delineated by our ethnic roots and borders... but not always. Indeed, these border lines are so fluid... And we do not pay allegiance as much as we resonate with a shared spirit. We all feel an undeniable bond with the land where we were born. And yet, if we leave it for another, we grow to feel a similar bond, often of a more complex nature. Both are forms of patriotism -- the first, involuntary, by birth, the second by choice. Neither is less worthy than the other. But one is earned.
Vera Nazarian (The Perpetual Calendar of Inspiration)
Miss Ingram was a mark beneath jealousy: she was too inferior to excite feeling. Pardon the seeming paradox; I mean what I say. She was very showy, but she was not genuine; she had a fine person, many brilliant attainments, but her mind was poor, her heart barren by nature; nothing bloomed spontaneously on that soil; no unforced natural fruit delighted by its freshness. She was not good; she was not original; she used to repeat sounding phrases from books; she never offered, nor had, an opinion of her own. She advocated a high tone of sentiment, but she did not know the sensations of sympathy and pity; tenderness and truth were not in her
Charlotte Brontë (Jane Eyre)
Consider how many times you have gossiped about the person you love the most to gain the support of others for your point of view. How many times have you hooked other people’s attention, and spread poison about your loved one in order to make your opinion right? Your opinion is nothing but your point of view. It is not necessarily true. Your opinion comes from your beliefs, your own ego, and your own dream. We create all this poison and spread it to others just so we can feel right about our own point of view.
Miguel Ruiz (The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom)
In the spring of 2009, I was the 217th person ever to be diagnosed with anti-NMDA-receptor autoimmune encephalitis. Just a year later, that figure had doubled. Now the number is in the thousands. Yet Dr. Bailey, considered one of the best neurologists in the country, had never heard of it. When we live in a time when the rate of misdiagnoses has shown no improvement since the 1930s, the lesson here is that it’s important to always get a second opinion. While he may be an excellent doctor in many respects, Dr. Bailey is also, in some ways, a perfect example of what is wrong with medicine. I was just a number to him (and if he saw thirty-five patients a day, as he told me, that means I was one of a very large number). He is a by-product of a defective system that forces neurologists to spend five minutes with X number of patients a day to maintain their bottom line. It’s a bad system. Dr. Bailey is not the exception to the rule. He is the rule.
Susannah Cahalan (Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness)
David Foster Wallace: I think the reason why people behave in an ugly manner is that it’s really scary to be alive and to be human, and people are really really afraid. And that the reasons… That the fear is the basic condition, and there are all kinds of reasons for why we’re so afraid. But the fact of the matter is, is that, is that the job that we’re here to do is to learn how to live in a way that we’re not terrified all the time. And not in a position of using all kinds of different things, and using people to keep that kind of terror at bay. That is my personal opinion. Well for me, as an American male, the face I’d put on the terror is the dawning realization that nothing’s enough, you know? That no pleasure is enough, that no achievement is enough. That there’s a kind of queer dissatisfaction or emptiness at the core of the self that is unassuageable by outside stuff. And my guess is that that’s been what’s going on, ever since people were hitting each other over the head with clubs. Though describable in a number of different words and cultural argots. And that our particular challenge is that there’s never been more and better stuff comin’ from the outside, that seems temporarily to sort of fill the hole or drown out the hole. Personally, I believe that if it’s assuageable in any way it’s by internal means. And I don’t know what that means. I think it’s fine in some way. I think it’s probably assuageable by internal means. I think those internal means have to be earned and developed, and it has something to do with, um, um, the pop-psych phrase is lovin’ yourself. It’s more like, if you can think of times in your life that you’ve treated people with extraordinary decency and love, and pure uninterested concern, just because they were valuable as human beings. The ability to do that with ourselves. To treat ourselves the way we would treat a really good, precious friend. Or a tiny child of ours that we absolutely loved more than life itself. And I think it’s probably possible to achieve that. I think part of the job we’re here for is to learn how to do this.
David Lipsky (Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace)
Because instant and credible information has to be given, it becomes necessary to resort to guesswork, rumors and suppositions to fill in the voids, and none of them will ever be rectified, they will stay on in the readers' memory. How many hasty, immature, superficial and misleading judgments are expressed every day, confusing readers, without any verification. The press can both simulate public opinion and miseducate it. Thus we may see terrorists heroized, or secret matters, pertaining to one's nation's defense, publicly revealed, or we may witness shameless intrusion on the privacy of well-known people under the slogan: "everyone is entitled to know everything." But this is a false slogan, characteristic of a false era: people also have the right not to know, and it is a much more valuable one. The right not to have their divine souls stuffed with gossip, nonsense, vain talk. A person who works and leads a meaningful life does not need this excessive burdening flow of information.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
She's always polite and kind, but her words lack the kind of curiosity and excitement you'd normally expect. Her true feelings- assuming such things exist- remain hidden away. Except for when a practical sort of decision has to be made, she never gives her personal opinion about anything. She seldom talks about herself, instead letting others talk, nodding warmly as she listens. But most people start to feel vaguely uneasy when talking with her, as if they suspect they're wasting her time, trampling on her private, graceful, dignified world. And that impression is, for the most part, correct.
Haruki Murakami (Kafka on the Shore)
The systems of stereotypes may be the core of our personal tradition, the defenses of our position in society. They are an ordered more or less consistent picture of the world, to which our habits, our tastes, our capacities, our comforts and our hopes have adjusted themselves. They may not be a complete picture of the world, but they are a picture of a possible world to which we are adapted. In that world, people and things have their well-known places, and do certain expected things. We feel at home there. We fit in. We are members. [...] It is not merely a short cut. It is all these things and something more. It is the guarantee of our self-respect; it is the projection upon the world of our own sense or our own value, our own position, and our own rights. [...] They are the fortress of our traditions, and behind its defenses we can continue to feel ourselves safe in the position we occupy.
Walter Lippmann (Public Opinion)
There is a difference between criticizing people and criticizing a people's uninformed ideals. That is, unless one defines himself or others by their ideals, then he is offended, and usually offended secretly. Because oddly enough, this person is the same person quickest to resort to dismissive name-calling, such as 'bigot' or 'zealot'. And oddly enough, he is always the one, the 'open-minded' one, who adamantly protests for, not only himself, but others not to listen to any type of scholarly theological truth inherently for the sake of his own personal, moral beliefs.
Criss Jami (Killosophy)
In the moral realm, there is very little consensus left in Western countries over the proper basis of moral behavior. And because of the power of the media, for millions of men and women the only venue where moral questions are discussed and weighed is the talk show, where more often than not the primary aim is to entertain, even shock, not to think. When Geraldo and Oprah become the arbiters of public morality, when the opinion of the latest media personality is sought on everything from abortion to transvestites, when banality is mistaken for profundity because [it's] uttered by a movie star or a basketball player, it is not surprising that there is less thought than hype. Oprah shapes more of the nation's grasp of right and wrong than most of the pulpits in the land. Personal and social ethics have been removed from the realms of truth and structures of thoughts; they have not only been relativized, but they have been democratized and trivialized.
D.A. Carson (The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism)
It was in this man's class that I first began to wonder if people who wrote fiction were not suffering from some kind of disorder--from what I've since come to think of, remembering the wild nocturnal rocking of Albert Vetch, as the midnight disease. The midnight disease is a kind of emotional insomnia; at every conscious moment its victim--even if he or she writes at dawn, or in the middle of the afternoon--feels like a person lying in a sweltering bedroom, with the window thrown open, looking up at a sky filled with stars and airplanes, listening to the narrative of a rattling blind, an ambulance, a fly trapped in a Coke bottle, while all around him the neighbors soundly sleep. this is in my opinion why writers--like insomniacs--are so accident-prone, so obsessed with the calculus of bad luck and missed opportunities, so liable to rumination and a concomitant inability to let go of a subject, even when urged repeatedly to do so.
Michael Chabon (Wonder Boys)
In my considered opinion, salary is payment for goods delivered and it must conform to the law of supply and demand. If, therefore, the fixed salary is a violation of this law - as, for instance, when I see two engineers leaving college together and both equally well trained and efficient, and one getting forty thousand while the other only earns two thousand , or when lawyers and hussars, possessing no special qualifications, are appointed directors of banks with huge salaries - I can only conclude that their salaries are not fixed according to the law of supply and demand but simply by personal influence. And this is an abuse important in itself and having a deleterious effect on government service.
Leo Tolstoy (Anna Karenina)
Creatures naturally hate their fellow-creatures, and whenever their own interest requires it, harm them. We cannot therefore avoid hatred and injuries from men, while to a great extent we can avoid their scorn. This is why there is usually little point in the respect which young people and those new to the world pay to those they come across, not through mean-mindedness or any other form of self-interest, but through a benevolent desire not to provoke enmity and to win hearts. They do not fulfill this desire, and in some ways they harm their own repute, because the person who is so respected comes to have a greater idea of himself, and he who pays the respect a lesser idea of himself. He who does not look to men for usefulness or fame, should not look for love either, since he will not obtain it. If he wants my opinion, he should preserve his own dignity completely, giving to everyone no more than his due. Thus he will be somewhat more hated and persecuted than otherwise, but not often despised.
Giacomo Leopardi (Thoughts)
My code of life and conduct is simply this: work hard, play to the allowable limit, disregard equally the good and bad opinion of others, never do a friend a dirty trick, eat and drink what you feel like when you feel like, never grow indignant over anything, trust to tobacco for calm and serenity, bathe twice a day . . . learn to play at least one musical instrument and then play it only in private, never allow one's self even a passing thought of death, never contradict anyone or seek to prove anything to anyone unless one gets paid for it in cold, hard coin, live the moment to the utmost of its possibilities, treat one's enemies with polite inconsideration, avoid persons who are chronically in need, and be satisfied with life always but never with one's self.
George Jean Nathan
No matter what any of you have done, you haven't all done it. Because it's not right to judge a class of people by the actions of one, or a few. That's not justice. It's prejudice, and I don't like it. Justice means judging each person individually." Jesse's lips slowly curled into a smile, and her eyes warmed as well. "High-minded," she said. "I'm not sure you'll find a lot of people living up to your standard." Claire shrugged. "Doesn't matter if they do or not. It's my opinion, I'm not trying to make anybody else agree. But I don't want them forcing their opinions on me." "And thus beging the war," said Lady Grey, who'd once been queen.
Rachel Caine (Daylighters (The Morganville Vampires, #15))
demanding recognition for something you did and getting angry or upset if you don’t get it; trying to get attention by talking about your problems, the story of your illnesses, or making a scene; giving your opinion when nobody has asked for it and it makes no difference to the situation; being more concerned with how the other person sees you than with the other person, which is to say, using other people for egoic reflection or as ego enhancers; trying to make an impression on others through possessions, knowledge, good looks, status, physical strength, and so on; bringing about temporary ego inflation through angry reaction against something or someone; taking things personally, feeling offended; making yourself right and others wrong through futile mental or verbal complaining; wanting to be seen, or to appear important.
Eckhart Tolle (A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose)
They keep telling you, when you’re older, you’ll have experience—and that’s supposed to be so great. What would you say about that, sir? Is it really any use, would you say?" "What kind of experience?” “Well—places you’ve been to, people you’ve met. Situations you’ve been through already, so you know how to handle them when they come up again. All that stuff that’s supposed to make you wise, in your later years.” “Let me tell you something, Kenny. For other people, I can’t speak—but, personally, I haven’t gotten wise on anything. Certainly, I’ve been through this and that; and when it happens again, I say to myself, Here it is again. But that doesn’t seem to help me. In my opinion, I, personally, have gotten steadily sillier and sillier and sillier—and that’s a fact.” “No kidding, sir? You can’t mean that! You mean, sillier than when you were young?” “Much, much sillier.” “I’ll be darned. Then experience is no use at all? You’re saying it might just as well not have happened?” “No. I’m not saying that. I only mean, you can’t use it. But if you don’t try to—if you just realize it’s there and you’ve got it—then it can be kind of marvelous.
Christopher Isherwood (A Single Man)
We did live in dire poverty. And one of the things that I hated was poverty. Some people hate spiders. Some people hate snakes. I hated poverty. I couldn't stand it. My mother couldn't stand the fact that we were doing poorly in school, and she prayed and she asked God to give her wisdom. What could she do to get her young sons to understand the importance of developing their minds so that they control their own lives? God gave her the wisdom. At least in her opinion. My brother and I didn't think it was that wise. Turn off the TV, let us watch only two or three TV programs during the week. And with all that spare time read two books a piece from the Detroit Public Libraries and submit to her written book reports, which she couldn't read but we didn't know that. I just hated this. My friends were out having a good time. Her friends would criticize her. My mother didn't care. But after a while I actually began to enjoy reading those books. Because we were very poor, but between the covers of those books I could go anywhere. I could be anybody. I could do anything. I began to read about people of great accomplishment. And as I read those stories, I began to see a connecting thread. I began to see that the person who has the most to do with you, and what happens to you in life, is you. You make decisions. You decide how much energy you want to put behind that decision. And I came to understand that I had control of my own destiny. And at that point I didn't hate poverty anymore, because I knew it was only temporary. I knew I could change that. It was incredibly liberating for me. Made all the difference.
Ben Carson
Ever since the days when such formidable mediocrities as Galsworthy, Dreiser, Tagore, Maxim Gorky, Romain Rolland and Thomas Mann were being accepted as geniuses, I have been perplexed and amused by fabricated notions about so-called "great books." That, for instance, Mann's asinine "Death in Venice," or Pasternak's melodramatic, vilely written "Dr. Zhivago," or Faulkner's corn-cobby chronicles can be considered "masterpieces" or at least what journalists term "great books," is to me the sort of absurd delusion as when a hypnotized person makes love to a chair. My greatest masterpieces of twentieth century prose are, in this order: Joyce's "Ulysses"; Kafka's "Transformation"; Bely's "St. Petersburg," and the first half of Proust's fairy tale, "In Search of Lost Time.
Vladimir Nabokov (Strong Opinions)
Man is complete in himself. When they go into the world, the world will disagree with them. That is inevitable. The world hates Individualism. But that is not to trouble them. They are to be calm and self-centred. If a man takes their cloak, they are to give him their coat, just to show that material things are of no importance. If people abuse them, they are not to answer back. What does it signify? The things people say of a man do not alter a man. He is what he is. Public opinion is of no value whatsoever. Even if people employ actual violence, they are not to be violent in turn. That would be to fall to the same low level. After all, even in prison, a man can be quite free. His soul can be free. His personality can be untroubled. He can be at peace. And, above all things, they are not to interfere with other people or judge them in any way. Personality is a very mysterious thing. A man cannot always be estimated by what he does. He may keep the law, and yet be worthless. He may break the law, and yet be fine. He may be bad, without ever doing anything bad. He may commit a sin against society, and yet realise through that sin his true perfection.
Oscar Wilde (Der Sozialismus und die Seele des Menschen)
And kid, you’ve got to love yourself. You’ve got wake up at four in the morning, brew black coffee, and stare at the birds drowning in the darkness of the dawn. You’ve got to sit next to the man at the train station who’s reading your favorite book and start a conversation. You’ve got to come home after a bad day and burn your skin from a shower. Then you’ve got to wash all your sheets until they smell of lemon detergent you bought for four dollars at the local grocery store. You’ve got to stop taking everything so goddam personally. You are not the moon kissing the black sky. You’ve got to compliment someones crooked brows at an art fair and tell them that their eyes remind you of green swimming pools in mid July. You’ve got to stop letting yourself get upset about things that won’t matter in two years. Sleep in on Saturday mornings and wake yourself up early on Sunday. You’ve got to stop worrying about what you’re going to tell her when she finds out. You’ve got to stop over thinking why he stopped caring about you over six months ago. You’ve got to stop asking everyone for their opinions. Fuck it. Love yourself, kiddo. You’ve got to love yourself.
Anonymous
So this is what you two do when you’re up here,” Dean drawls. “All that deep, intensive tutoring.” He air-quotes the last word, chuckling in delight. “Actually, Garrett’s just helping me brush up on my make-out skills,” I tell Dean in the most casual voice I can muster. Dean snickers. “’That so?” “Okay…” Dean’s eyes gleam. “Then I’m calling your bluff, baby doll. Show me your moves.” I blink in surprise. “What?” “If a doctor told you you’ve got ten days to live, you’d go for a second opinion, wouldn’t you? Well, if you’re worried about being a crappy kisser, you can’t just take G’s word for it. You need a second opinion.” His brows lift in challenge. “Let me see what you’ve got.” “Stop being a jackass,” Garrett mutters. “No, he has a point,” I answer awkwardly, and my brain screams, What? He has a point? Apparently Garrett’s body-melting kisses have turned me into a crazy person.
Elle Kennedy (The Deal (Off-Campus, #1))
I thought about that while he made his next calls, while I kept on with the newsletters. I thought about it during Sunday service at Word of Life, and during study hours in my room, with the Viking Erin and her squeaky pink highlighter. What it meant to really believe in something—for real. Belief. The big dictionary in the Promise library said it meant something one accepts as true or real; a firmly held conviction or opinion. But even that definition, as short and simple as it was, confused me. True or real: Those were definite words; opinion and conviction just weren't—opinions wavered and changed and fluctuated with the person, the situation. And most troubling of all was the word accepts. Something one accepts. I was much better at excepting everything than accepting anything, at least anything for certain, for definite. That much I knew. That much I believed.
Emily M. Danforth (The Miseducation of Cameron Post)
It was the general opinion of ancient nations, that the divinity alone was adequate to the important office of giving laws to men... and modern nations, in the consecrations of kings, and in several superstitious chimeras of divine rights in princes and nobles, are nearly unanimous in preserving remnants of it... Is the jealousy of power, and the envy of superiority, so strong in all men, that no considerations of public or private utility are sufficient to engage their submission to rules for their own happiness? Or is the disposition to imposture so prevalent in men of experience, that their private views of ambition and avarice can be accomplished only by artifice? — … There is nothing in which mankind have been more unanimous; yet nothing can be inferred from it more than this, that the multitude have always been credulous, and the few artful. The United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature: and if men are now sufficiently enlightened to disabuse themselves of artifice, imposture, hypocrisy, and superstition, they will consider this event as an era in their history. Although the detail of the formation of the American governments is at present little known or regarded either in Europe or America, it may hereafter become an object of curiosity. It will never be pretended that any persons employed in that service had any interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the inspiration of heaven, any more than those at work upon ships or houses, or labouring in merchandize or agriculture: it will for ever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses. As Copley painted Chatham, West, Wolf, and Trumbull, Warren and Montgomery; as Dwight, Barlow, Trumbull, and Humphries composed their verse, and Belknap and Ramzay history; as Godfrey invented his quadrant, and Rittenhouse his planetarium; as Boylston practised inoculation, and Franklin electricity; as Paine exposed the mistakes of Raynal, and Jefferson those of Buffon, so unphilosophically borrowed from the Recherches Philosophiques sur les Américains those despicable dreams of de Pauw — neither the people, nor their conventions, committees, or sub-committees, considered legislation in any other light than ordinary arts and sciences, only as of more importance. Called without expectation, and compelled without previous inclination, though undoubtedly at the best period of time both for England and America, to erect suddenly new systems of laws for their future government, they adopted the method of a wise architect, in erecting a new palace for the residence of his sovereign. They determined to consult Vitruvius, Palladio, and all other writers of reputation in the art; to examine the most celebrated buildings, whether they remain entire or in ruins; compare these with the principles of writers; and enquire how far both the theories and models were founded in nature, or created by fancy: and, when this should be done, as far as their circumstances would allow, to adopt the advantages, and reject the inconveniences, of all. Unembarrassed by attachments to noble families, hereditary lines and successions, or any considerations of royal blood, even the pious mystery of holy oil had no more influence than that other of holy water: the people universally were too enlightened to be imposed on by artifice; and their leaders, or more properly followers, were men of too much honour to attempt it. Thirteen governments thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, which are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the globe, are a great point gained in favour of the rights of mankind. [Preface to 'A Defence of the Constitutions of the United States of America', 1787]
John Adams (A Defense of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America: Akashic U.S. Presidents Series)
Sometimes you look at yourself in the mirror, any mirror, and you wonder why that nose looks as it does, or those eyes--what is behind them, what depths can they reach. Your flesh, your skin, your lips--you know that that face which you behold is not yours alone but is already something which belongs to those who love it, to your family and all those who esteem you. But a person is more than a face or a bundle of nerves and a spigot of blood; a person is more than talking and feeling and being sensitive to the changes in the weather, to the opinions of people. A person is part of a clan, a race. And knowing this, you wonder where you came from and who preceded you; you wonder if you are strong, as you know those who lived before you were strong, and then you realize that there is a durable thread which ties you to a past you did not create but which created you. Then you know that you have to be sure about who you are and if you are not sure or if you do not know, you have to go back, trace those who hold the secret to your past. The search may not be fruitful; from this moment of awareness, there is nothing more frustrating than the belief that you have been meaningless. A man who knows himself can live with his imperfections; he knows instinctively that he is part of a wave that started from great, unnavigable expanses.
F. Sionil José
Who would appreciate such candor? No one. None of us really likes honesty. We prefer deception –but only when it is unabashedly flattering or artfully camouflaged. Groups seem to need to believe that they are superior to others and that they have a purpose greater than just passing along their genes to the next generation. Individuals seem to need similar delusions – about who they are and why they do what they do. They need heroes, however fraudulent… Studies show that people are more likely to accept the opinion of a confident con man than the cautious view of someone who actually knows what he is talking about. And professionals who form overconfident opinions on the basis of incorrect readings of the facts are more likely to succeed than their more competent peers who display greater doubt. What’s more, deception works best, according to studies by psychologists, when the person doing the deceiving is fool enough to be deceived, too; that is, when he believes his own lies. That is why incompetent leaders – who are naïve enough to fall for their own guff – are such a danger to civilized life. If they are modern leaders, they must also delude themselves into thinking they know how to make the world a better place. Invariably, the answers they propose to problems are ones that bubble up from their own vanity, the essence of which is to make the rest of the world look just like them!
William Bonner (Mobs, Messiahs, and Markets: Surviving the Public Spectacle in Finance and Politics)
Rich loved taking care of women. He would swoop in like Tarzan swinging on a vine, rescue them from whatever situation they found themselves in, and be their hero. He would make all the decisions, and he would be strong and dependable. "What a catch!" they would feel. But they did not see his inability to allow them to disagree or have an opinion. He could not yield to another person. He could not show weakness or vulnerability. He would make up for that inflexibility by being a very attractive "strong man" to women who would want to be swept off their feet more than they wanted a real person. So, they would be a perfect match—until he would see the other side of a passive, compliant woman. She would be sneaky and not tell him exactly what was going on. Then, lo and behold, one day she would really "mess up" and have a wish contrary to somthing he wanted or valued. Then, from his perspective, she had "changed" and had become "selfish." "She used to be nice, and now look!" But in reality, this is not what had happened. She had not changed. When they first met, she showed only half of who she was, hiding the other half, which would come out in sneaky, indirect ways. After a while, it came out directly, such as when she disagreed with him. Then he would cry, "Foul." So they both got what they asked for. In her compliance, she attracted a controller. In his control he attracted an adaptive person who had a secret side and was indirect. They were co-conspirators, and it always blew up.
Henry Cloud (How to Get a Date Worth Keeping)
Miss Bingley was very deeply mortified by Darcy's marriage; but as she thought it advisable to retain the right of visiting at Pemberley, she dropt all her resentment; was fonder than ever of Georgiana, almost as attentive to Darcy as heretofore, and paid off every arrear of civility to Elizabeth. Pemberley was now Georgiana's home; and the attachment of the sisters was exactly what Darcy had hoped to see. They were able to love each other, even as well as they intended. Georgiana had the highest opinion in the world of Elizabeth; though at first she often listened with an astonishment bordering on alarm at her lively, sportive manner of talking to her brother. He, who had always inspired in herself a respect which almost overcame her affection, she now saw the object of open pleasantry. Her mind received knowledge which had never before fallen in her way. By Elizabeth's instructions she began to comprehend that a woman may take liberties with her husband which a brother will not always allow in a sister more than ten years younger than himself. Lady Catherine was extremely indignant on the marriage of her nephew; and as she gave way to all the genuine frankness of her character, in her reply to the letter which announced its arrangement, she sent him language so very abusive, especially of Elizabeth, that for some time all intercourse was at an end. But at length, by Elizabeth's persuasion, he was prevailed on to overlook the offence, and seek a reconciliation; and, after a little farther resistance on the part of his aunt, her resentment gave way, either to her affection for him, or her curiosity to see how his wife conducted herself: and she condescended to wait on them at Pemberley, in spite of that pollution which its woods had received, not merely from the presence of such a mistress, but the visits of her uncle and aunt from the city. With the Gardiners they were always on the most intimate terms. Darcy, as well as Elizabeth, really loved them; and they were both ever sensible of the warmest gratitude towards the persons who, by bringing her into Derbyshire, had been the means of uniting them.
Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
Because we cannot discover God's throne in the sky with a radiotelescope or establish (for certain) that a beloved father or mother is still about in a more or less corporeal form, people assume that such ideas are "not true." I would rather say that they are not "true" enough, for these are conceptions of a kind that have accompanied human life from prehistoric times, and that still break through into consciousness at any provocation. Modern man may assert that he can dispose with them, and he may bolster his opinion by insisting that there is no scientific evidence of their truth. Or he may even regret the loss of his convictions. But since we are dealing with invisible and unknowable things (for God is beyond human understanding, and there is no means of proving immortality), why should we bother about evidence? Even if we did not know by reason our need for salt in our food, we should nonetheless profit from its use. We might argue that the use of salt is a mere illusion of taste or a superstition; but it would still contribute to our well-being. Why, then, should we deprive ourselves of views that would prove helpful in crises and would give a meaning to our existence? And how do we know that such ideas are not true? Many people would agree with me if I stated flatly that such ideas are probably illusions. What they fail to realize is that the denial is as impossible to "prove" as the assertion of religious belief. We are entirely free to choose which point of view we take; it will in any case be an arbitrary decision. There is, however, a strong empirical reason why we should cultivate thoughts that can never be proved. It is that they are known to be useful. Man positively needs general ideas and convictions that will give a meaning to his life and enable him to find a place for himself in the universe. He can stand the most incredible hardships when he is convinced that they make sense; he is crushed when, on top of all his misfortunes, he has to admit that he is taking part in a "tale told by an idiot." It is the role of religious symbols to give a meaning to the life of man. The Pueblo Indians believe that they are the sons of Father Sun, and this belief endows their life with a perspective (and a goal) that goes far beyond their limited existence. It gives them ample space for the unfolding of personality and permits them a full life as complete persons. Their plight is infinitely more satisfactory than that of a man in our own civilization who knows that he is (and will remain) nothing more than an underdog with no inner meaning to his life.
C.G. Jung (Man and His Symbols)
The movement of descent and discovery begins at the moment you consciously become dissatisfied with life. Contrary to most professional opinion, this gnawing dissatisfaction with life is not a sign of "mental illness," nor an indication of poor social adjustment, nor a character disorder. For concealed within this basic unhappiness with life and existence is the embryo of a growing intelligence, a special intelligence usually buried under the immense weight of social shams. A person who is beginning to sense the suffering of life is, at the same time, beginning to awaken to deeper realities, truer realities. For suffering smashes to pieces the complacency of our normal fictions about reality, and forces us to become alive in a special sense—to see carefully, to feel deeply, to touch ourselves and our worlds in ways we have heretofore avoided. It has been said, and truly I think, that suffering is the first grace. In a special sense, suffering is almost a time of rejoicing, for it marks the birth of creative insight. But only in a special sense. Some people cling to their suffering as a mother to its child, carrying it as a burden they dare not set down. They do not face suffering with awareness, but rather clutch at their suffering, secretly transfixed with the spasms of martyrdom. Suffering should neither be denied awareness, avoided, despised, not glorified, clung to, dramatized. The emergence of suffering is not so much good as it is a good sign, an indication that one is starting to realize that life lived outside unity consciousness is ultimately painful, distressing, and sorrowful. The life of boundaries is a life of battles—of fear, anxiety, pain, and finally death. It is only through all manner of numbing compensations, distractions, and enchantments that we agree not to question our illusory boundaries, the root cause of the endless wheel of agony. But sooner or later, if we are not rendered totally insensitive, our defensive compensations begin to fail their soothing and concealing purpose. As a consequence, we begin to suffer in one way or another, because our awareness is finally directed toward the conflict-ridden nature of our false boundaries and the fragmented life supported by them.
Ken Wilber (No Boundary: Eastern and Western Approaches to Personal Growth)
Knowing that wisdom waits to be gathered, I actively search her out. I will change my actions TODAY! I will train my eyes and ears to read and listen to books and recordings that bring about positive changes in my personal relationships and a greater understanding of my fellow man. I will read and listen only to what increases my belief in myself and my future. I will seek wisdom. I will choose my friends with care. I am who my friends are. I speak their language, and I wear their clothes. I share their opinions and their habits. From this moment forward, I will choose to associate with people whose lives and lifestyles I admire. If I associate with chickens, I will learn to scratch at the ground and squabble over crumbs. If I associate with eagles, I will learn to soar to great heights. I am an eagle. It is my destiny to fly. I will seek wisdom. I will listen to the counsel of wise men. The words of a wise man are like raindrops on dry ground. They are precious and can be quickly used for immediate results. Only the blade of grass that catches a raindrop will prosper and grow. I will seek wisdom. I will be a servant to others. A wise man will cultivate a servant’s spirit, for that particular attribute attracts people like no other. As I humbly serve others, their wisdom will be freely shared with me. He who serves the most grows the fastest. I will become a humble servant. I will look to open the door for someone. I will be excited when I am available to help. I will be a servant to others. I will listen to the counsel of wise men. I will choose my friends with care. I will seek wisdom.
Andy Andrews (The Traveler's Gift: Seven Decisions that Determine Personal Success)
At present, the successful office-seeker is a good deal like the center of the earth; he weighs nothing himself, but draws everything else to him. There are so many societies, so many churches, so many isms, that it is almost impossible for an independent man to succeed in a political career. Candidates are forced to pretend that they are catholics with protestant proclivities, or christians with liberal tendencies, or temperance men who now and then take a glass of wine, or, that although not members of any church their wives are, and that they subscribe liberally to all. The result of all this is that we reward hypocrisy and elect men entirely destitute of real principle; and this will never change until the people become grand enough to allow each other to do their own thinking. Our government should be entirely and purely secular. The religious views of a candidate should be kept entirely out of sight. He should not be compelled to give his opinion as to the inspiration of the bible, the propriety of infant baptism, or the immaculate conception. All these things are private and personal. The people ought to be wise enough to select as their officers men who know something of political affairs, who comprehend the present greatness, and clearly perceive the future grandeur of our country. If we were in a storm at sea, with deck wave-washed and masts strained and bent with storm, and it was necessary to reef the top sail, we certainly would not ask the brave sailor who volunteered to go aloft, what his opinion was on the five points of Calvinism. Our government has nothing to do with religion. It is neither christian nor pagan; it is secular. But as long as the people persist in voting for or against men on account of their religious views, just so long will hypocrisy hold place and power. Just so long will the candidates crawl in the dust—hide their opinions, flatter those with whom they differ, pretend to agree with those whom they despise; and just so long will honest men be trampled under foot.
Robert G. Ingersoll (Some Mistakes of Moses)
Wisdom is really the key to wealth. With great wisdom, comes great wealth and success. Rather than pursuing wealth, pursue wisdom. The aggressive pursuit of wealth can lead to disappointment. Wisdom is defined as the quality of having experience, and being able to discern or judge what is true, right, or lasting. Wisdom is basically the practical application of knowledge. Rich people have small TVs and big libraries, and poor people have small libraries and big TVs. Become completely focused on one subject and study the subject for a long period of time. Don't skip around from one subject to the next. The problem is generally not money. Jesus taught that the problem was attachment to possessions and dependence on money rather than dependence on God. Those who love people, acquire wealth so they can give generously. After all, money feeds, shelters, and clothes people. They key is to work extremely hard for a short period of time (1-5 years), create abundant wealth, and then make money work hard for you through wise investments that yield a passive income for life. Don't let the opinions of the average man sway you. Dream, and he thinks you're crazy. Succeed, and he thinks you're lucky. Acquire wealth, and he thinks you're greedy. Pay no attention. He simply doesn't understand. Failure is success if we learn from it. Continuing failure eventually leads to success. Those who dare to fail miserably can achieve greatly. Whenever you pursue a goal, it should be with complete focus. This means no interruptions. Only when one loves his career and is skilled at it can he truly succeed. Never rush into an investment without prior research and deliberation. With preferred shares, investors are guaranteed a dividend forever, while common stocks have variable dividends. Some regions with very low or no income taxes include the following: Nevada, Texas, Wyoming, Delaware, South Dakota, Cyprus, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Panama, San Marino, Seychelles, Isle of Man, Channel Islands, Curaçao, Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Brunei, Monaco, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Bermuda, Kuwait, Oman, Andorra, Cayman Islands, Belize, Vanuatu, and Campione d'Italia. There is only one God who is infinite and supreme above all things. Do not replace that infinite one with finite idols. As frustrated as you may feel due to your life circumstances, do not vent it by cursing God or unnecessarily uttering his name. Greed leads to poverty. Greed inclines people to act impulsively in hopes of gaining more. The benefit of giving to the poor is so great that a beggar is actually doing the giver a favor by allowing the person to give. The more I give away, the more that comes back. Earn as much as you can. Save as much as you can. Invest as much as you can. Give as much as you can.
H.W. Charles (The Money Code: Become a Millionaire With the Ancient Jewish Code)
There are many who consider as an injury to themselves any conduct which they have a distaste for, and resent it as an outrage to their feelings; as a religious bigot, when charged with disregarding the religious feelings of others, has been known to retort that they disregard his feelings, by persisting in their abominable worship or creed. But there is no parity between the feeling of a person for his own opinion, and the feeling of another who is offended at his holding it; no more than between the desire of a thief to take a purse, and the desire of the right owner to keep it. And a person's taste is as much his own peculiar concern as his opinion or his purse. It is easy for any one to imagine an ideal public, which leaves the freedom and choice of individuals in all uncertain matters undisturbed, and only requires them to abstain from modes of conduct which universal experience has condemned. But where has there been seen a public which set any such limit to its censorship? or when does the public trouble itself about universal experience. In its interferences with personal conduct it is seldom thinking of anything but the enormity of acting or feeling differently from itself; and this standard of judgment, thinly disguised, is held up to mankind as the dictate of religion and philosophy, by nine tenths of all moralists and speculative writers. These teach that things are right because they are right; because we feel them to be so. They tell us to search in our own minds and hearts for laws of conduct binding on ourselves and on all others. What can the poor public do but apply these instructions, and make their own personal feelings of good and evil, if they are tolerably unanimous in them, obligatory on all the world?
John Stuart Mill (On Liberty)
It is an unchristian religion, in the first place!' the prince resumed in great agitation and with excessive sharpness. 'That's in the first place, and secondly, Roman Catholicism is even worse than atheism - that's my opinion. Yes, that's my opinion! Atheism merely preaches a negation, but Catholicism goes further: it preaches a distorted Christ, a Christ calumniated and defamed by it, the opposite of Christ! It preaches Antichrist - I swear it does, I assure you it does! This is my personal opinion, an opinion I've held for a long time, and it has worried me a lot myself. ... Roman Catholicism believes that the Church cannot exist on earth without universal temporal power, and cries: Non possumus! In my opinion, Roman Catholicism isn't even a religion, but most decidedly a continuation of the Holy Roman Empire, and everything in it is subordinated to that idea, beginning with faith. The Pope seized the earth, an earthly throne and took up the sword; and since then everything has gone on in the same way, except that they've added lies, fraud, deceit, fanaticism, superstition wickedness. They have trifled with the most sacred, truthful, innocent, ardent feelings of the people, have bartered it all for money, for base temporal power. And isn't this the teaching of Antichrist? Isn't it clear that atheism had to come from them? And it did come from them, from Roman Catholicism itself! Atheism originated first of all with them: how could they believe in themselves? It gained ground because of abhorrence of them; it is the child of their lies and their spiritual impotence! Atheism! In our country it is only the upper classes who do not believe, as Mr Radomsky so splendidly put it the other day, for they have lost their roots. But in Europe vast numbers of the common people are beginning to lose their faith - at first from darkness and lies, and now from fanaticism, hatred of the Church and Christianity!
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Idiot)
To burn always with this hard, gem-like flame, to maintain this ecstasy, is success in life. In a sense it might even be said that our failure is to form habits: for, after all, habit is relative to a stereotyped world, and meantime it is only the roughness of the eye that makes two persons, things, situations, seem alike. While all melts under our feet, we may well grasp at any exquisite passion, or any contribution to knowledge that seems by a lifted horizon to set the spirit free for a moment, or any stirring of the sense, strange dyes, strange colours, and curious odours, or work of the artist’s hands, or the face of one’s friend. Not to discriminate every moment some passionate attitude in those about us, and in the very brilliancy of their gifts some tragic dividing on their ways, is, on this short day of frost and sun, to sleep before evening. With this sense of the splendour of our experience and of its awful brevity, gathering all we are into one desperate effort to see and touch, we shall hardly have time to make theories about the things we see and touch. What we have to do is to be for ever curiously testing new opinions and courting new impressions, never acquiescing in a facile orthodoxy, of Comte, or of Hegel, or of our own. Philosophical theories or ideas, as points of view, instruments of criticism, may help us to gather up what might otherwise pass unregarded by us. “Philosophy is the microscope of thought.” The theory or idea or system which requires of us the sacrifice of any part of this experience, in consideration of some interest into which we cannot enter, or some abstract theory we have not identified with ourselves, or of what is only conventional, has no real claim upon us.
Walter Pater
BERENGER: And you consider all this natural? 

DUDARD: What could be more natural than a rhinoceros? 

 BERENGER: Yes, but for a man to turn into a rhinoceros is abnormal beyond question. 

DUDARD: Well, of course, that's a matter of opinion ... 

 BERENGER: It is beyond question, absolutely beyond question! 
DUDARD: You seem very sure of yourself. Who can say where the normal stops and the abnormal begins? Can you personally define these conceptions of normality and abnormality? Nobody has solved this problem yet, either medically or philosophically. You ought to know that. 

 BERENGER: The problem may not be resolved philosophically -- but in practice it's simple. They may prove there's no such thing as movement ... and then you start walking ... [he starts walking up and down the room] ... and you go on walking, and you say to yourself, like Galileo, 'E pur si muove' ... 

 DUDARD: You're getting things all mixed up! Don't confuse the issue. In Galileo's case it was the opposite: theoretic and scientific thought proving itself superior to mass opinion and dogmatism. 

 BERENGER: [quite lost] What does all that mean? Mass opinion, dogmatism -- they're just words! I may be mixing everything up in my head but you're losing yours. You don't know what's normal and what isn't any more. I couldn't care less about Galileo ... I don't give a damn about Galileo. 

 DUDARD: You brought him up in the first place and raised the whole question, saying that practice always had the last word. Maybe it does, but only when it proceeds from theory! The history of thought and science proves that. BERENGER: [more and more furious] It doesn't prove anything of the sort! It's all gibberish, utter lunacy! 

DUDARD: There again we need to define exactly what we mean by lunacy ... 

 BERENGER: Lunacy is lunacy and that's all there is to it! Everybody knows what lunacy is. And what about the rhinoceroses -- are they practice or are they theory?
Eugène Ionesco (Rhinoceros / The Chairs / The Lesson)
I’ve been labeled before. I’m supposed to be a jock and then a brain and then one of those music/theater people. I guess I like to keep surprising people. But what kind of life can you live in a tiny square box? My personality is less narrow. I like a lot of different things. But still, people like to be able to put you in a category, to be able to place you in even rows and put a sign at the front. They think the best you can achieve is being at the front of your row…but why not form your own row? Isn’t that the definition of being a leader? Maybe taking charge means something different nowadays. How come lately people think you’re a leader just because you happen to be at the front of the line? A good leader need only point the way and watch as others follow a direction, not a figure. A great leader can lead without anyone ever knowing it. A spectacular leader can lead without ever knowing it themselves. The person at the front of the line is the puppet of someone that you couldn’t name because someone else pointed the way. I must have missed something. I thought being a follower was letting other people shape your life. I thought it meant letting other people decide who you were going to be. I won’t conform. I won’t let people class me. Because once you’re there you’re stuck. I will be whoever I want to be, and no one can stop me. I have something they don’t have, which is nothing to lose. I have my entire life to live and I intend to live it the way I would like to live. I will form my own row. I will point in a new direction. If that means going against other peoples’ opinion of normal, then so be it. Who says normal is right? Normal certainly strikes me as a boring way to live my life.
K.D. Enos
I have that old sinking feeling. I've been overly available, sickeningly sweet and forever enabling all in the name of being 'liked.' I've compromised myself. I've suffered fools, idiots and dullards. I've gone on far too many dates with men because I felt guilty that they liked me more than I liked them. I've fallen deeply and madly I'm love with men I've never met just because I thought they looked 'deep.' I've built whole futures with men I hardly knew; I've planned weddings and named invisible children based on a side glance. I've made chemistry where there was none. I've forced intimacy while building higher Walls. I've been alone in a two year relationship. I've faked more orgasms than I can count while being comfortable with no affection at all. I realise I have to make a decision right here and now. Do I go back to the sliver of a person I was before or do I, despite whatever bullshit happened tonight, hold on to this... This authenticity? If I go back to the the way I was before tonight, I'll have to compromise myself, follow rules with men who have none, hold my tongue, be quiet and laugh at shitty jokes. I have to never be challenged, yet be called challenging when I have an opinion or, really, speak at all. I'll never be torched by someone and get goosebumps again. I'll never be outside of myself. I'll never let go. I'll never lose myself. I'll never know what real love is - both for someone else and for me. I'll look back on this life and wish I could do it all over again. I finally see the consequences of that life. The path more travelled only led to someone else's life: an idealised, saturated world of White picket fences and gingham tablecloths. A life where the real me is locked away. Sure i had a plus-one but at what price? No. No matter how awkward and painful this gets, I can't go back.
Liza Palmer (More Like Her)
It must be this overarching commitment to what is really an abstraction, to one's children right or wrong, that can be even more fierce than the commitment to them as explicit, difficult people, and that can consequently keep you devoted to them when as individuals they disappoint. On my part it was this broad covenant with children-in-theory that I may have failed to make and to which I was unable to resort when Kevin finally tested my maternal ties to a perfect mathematical limit on Thursday. I didn't vote for parties, but for candidates. My opinions were as ecumenical as my larder, then still chock full of salsa verde from Mexico City, anchovies from Barcelona, lime leaves from Bangkok. I had no problem with abortion but abhorred capital punishment, which I suppose meant that I embraced the sanctity of life only in grown-ups. My environmental habits were capricious; I'd place a brick in our toilet tank, but after submitting to dozens of spit-in-the-air showers with derisory European water pressure, I would bask under a deluge of scalding water for half an hour. My closet wafter with Indian saris, Ghanaian wraparounds, and Vietnamese au dais. My vocabulary was peppered with imports -- gemutlich, scusa, hugge, mzungu. I so mixed and matched the planet that you sometimes worried I had no commitments to anything or anywhere, though you were wrong; my commitments were simply far-flung and obscenely specific. By the same token, I could not love a child; I would have to love this one. I was connected to the world by a multitude of threads, you by a few sturdy guide ropes. It was the same with patriotism: You loved the idea of the United States so much more powerfully than the country itself, and it was thanks to your embrace of the American aspiration that you could overlook the fact that your fellow Yankee parents were lining up overnight outside FAO Schwartz with thermoses of chowder to buy a limited release of Nintendo. In the particular dwells the tawdry. In the conceptual dwells the grand, the transcendent, the everlasting. Earthly countries and single malignant little boys can go to hell; the idea of countries and the idea of sons triumph for eternity. Although neither of us ever went to church, I came to conclude that you were a naturally religious person.
Lionel Shriver (We Need to Talk About Kevin)
Among us English-speaking peoples especially do the praises of poverty need once more to be boldly sung. We have grown literally afraid to be poor. We despise any one who elects to be poor in order to simplify and save his inner life. If he does not join the general scramble and pant with the money-making street, we deem him spiritless and lacking in ambition. We have lost the power even of imagining what the ancient idealization of poverty could have meant: the liberation from material attachments, the unbribed soul, the manlier indifference, the paying our way by what we are or do and not by what we have, the right to fling away our life at any moment irresponsibly—the more athletic trim, in short, the moral fighting shape. When we of the so-called better classes are scared as men were never scared in history at material ugliness and hardship; when we put off marriage until our house can be artistic, and quake at the thought of having a child without a bank-account and doomed to manual labor, it is time for thinking men to protest against so unmanly and irreligious a state of opinion. It is true that so far as wealth gives time for ideal ends and exercise to ideal energies, wealth is better than poverty and ought to be chosen. But wealth does this in only a portion of the actual cases. Elsewhere the desire to gain wealth and the fear to lose it are our chief breeders of cowardice and propagators of corruption. There are thousands of conjunctures in which a wealth-bound man must be a slave, whilst a man for whom poverty has no terrors becomes a freeman. Think of the strength which personal indifference to poverty would give us if we were devoted to unpopular causes. We need no longer hold our tongues or fear to vote the revolutionary or reformatory ticket. Our stocks might fall, our hopes of promotion vanish, our salaries stop, our club doors close in our faces; yet, while we lived, we would imperturbably bear witness to the spirit, and our example would help to set free our generation. The cause would need its funds, but we its servants would be potent in proportion as we personally were contented with our poverty. I recommend this matter to your serious pondering, for it is certain that the prevalent fear of poverty among the educated classes is the worst moral disease from which our civilization suffers.
William James (Varieties of Religious Experience, a Study in Human Nature)
Look everywhere. There are miracles and curiosities to fascinate and intrigue for many lifetimes: the intricacies of nature and everything in the world and universe around us from the miniscule to the infinite; physical, chemical and biological functionality; consciousness, intelligence and the ability to learn; evolution, and the imperative for life; beauty and other abstract interpretations; language and other forms of communication; how we make our way here and develop social patterns of culture and meaningfulness; how we organise ourselves and others; moral imperatives; the practicalities of survival and all the embellishments we pile on top; thought, beliefs, logic, intuition, ideas; inventing, creating, information, knowledge; emotions, sensations, experience, behaviour. We are each unique individuals arising from a combination of genetic, inherited, and learned information, all of which can be extremely fallible. Things taught to us when we are young are quite deeply ingrained. Obviously some of it (like don’t stick your finger in a wall socket) is very useful, but some of it is only opinion – an amalgamation of views from people you just happen to have had contact with. A bit later on we have access to lots of other information via books, media, internet etc, but it is important to remember that most of this is still just opinion, and often biased. Even subjects such as history are presented according to the presenter’s or author’s viewpoint, and science is continually changing. Newspapers and TV tend to cover news in the way that is most useful to them (and their funders/advisors), Research is also subject to the decisions of funders and can be distorted by business interests. Pretty much anyone can say what they want on the internet, so our powers of discernment need to be used to a great degree there too. Not one of us can have a completely objective view as we cannot possibly have access to, and filter, all knowledge available, so we must accept that our views are bound to be subjective. Our understanding and responses are all very personal, and our views extremely varied. We tend to make each new thing fit in with the picture we have already started in our heads, but we often have to go back and adjust the picture if we want to be honest about our view of reality as we continually expand it. We are taking in vast amounts of information from others all the time, so need to ensure we are processing that to develop our own true reflection of who we are.
Jay Woodman