In a democracy it is necessary that people should learn to endure having their sentiments outraged ...
You find as you look around the world that every single bit of progress in humane feeling, every improvement in the criminal law, every step toward the diminution of war, every step toward better treatment of the colored races, or every mitigation of slavery, every moral progress that there has been
Unless one is taught what to do with success after getting it, achievement of it must inevitably leave him prey to boredom.
You could live without the opera singer, but not without the services of the baker. On this ground you might say that the baker performs a greater service; but no lover of music would agree.
The discipline in your life should be one determined by your own desires and your own needs, not put upon you by society or authority.
The fundamental defect of Christian ethics consists in the fact that it labels certain classes of acts 'sins' and others 'virtue' on grounds that have nothing to do with their social consequences.
In detective stories . . . I alternately identify myself with the murderer and the huntsman-detective, but . . . there are those to which this vicarious outlet is too mild.
Science seems to be at war with itself.... Naive realism leads to physics, and physics, if true, shows naive realism to be false. Therefore naive realism, if true, is false; therefore it is false.
Men fear thought as they fear nothing else on earth - more than ruin, more even than death.
It would now be technically possible to unify the world, abolish war and poverty altogether, if men desired their own happiness more than the misery of their enemies.
As soon as we abandon our reason and are content to rely on authority, there is no end to our troubles.
Patience and boredom are closely related. Boredom, a certain kind of boredom, is really impatience. You don't like the way things are, they aren't interesting enough for you, so you deccide- and boredom is a decision-that you are bored.
The skill of the politician consists in guessing what people can be brought to think advantageous to themselves; the skill of the expert consists in calculating what really is advantageous, provided people can be brought to think so.
Unless you assume a God, the question of life's purpose is meaningless.
There seems scarcely any limit to what could be done in the way of producing a good world, if only men would use science wisely.
The root of the matter is a very simple and old fashioned thing... love or compassion. If you feel this, you have a motive for existence, a guide for action, a reason for courage, an imperative necessity for intellectual honesty.
Philosophy, for Plato, is a kind of vision, the 'vision of truth'...Everyone who has done any kind of creative work has experienced, in a greater or less degree, the state of mind in which, after long labour, truth or beauty appears, or seems to appear, in a sudden glory - it may only be about some
The happiness that is genuinely satisfying is accompanied by the fullest exercise of our faculties and the fullest realization of the world in which we live.
A process which led from the amoeba to man appeared to the philosophers to be obviously a progress though whether the amoeba would agree with this opinion is not known.
What is new in our time is the increased power of the authorities to enforce their prejudices.
Most people believe in God because they have been taught from early infancy to do it, and that is the main reason. Then I think that the next most powerful reason is the wish for safety.
None but a coward dares to boast that he has never known fear.
Freedom in general may be defined as the absence of obstacles to the realization of desires.
What vanity needs for its satisfaction is glory, and it's easy to have glory without power.
A world without delight and without affection is a world destitute of value.
Those who in principle oppose birth control are either incapable of arithmetic or else in favour of war, pestilence and famine as permanent features of human life.
Nine-tenths of the activities of a modern Government are harmful; therefore the worse they are performed, the better.
We love our habits more than our income, often more than our life.
The best authorities are unanimous in saying that a war with H-bombs might possibly put an end to the human race. It is feared that if many H-bombs are used there will be universal death, sudden only for a minority, but for the majority a slow torture of disease and disintegration.
I have come to realize that an early symptom of approaching mental illness is the belief that one's work is terribly important. If you consider your work very important you should take a day off.