If it can be destroyed by the truth, it deserves to be destroyed by the truth.
Carl Sagan, astronomer and writer (1934-1996 )
The greatest tragedy in mankind's entire history may be the hijacking of morality by religion.
Arthur C. Clarke, science fiction writer (1917-2008 )
What is a Curmudgeon anyway? A curmudgeon's reputation for malevolence is undeserved. They're neither warped nor evil at heart. They don't hate mankind, just mankind's absurdities. They're just as sensitive and soft-hearted as the next guy, but they hide their vulnerability beneath a crust of misanthropy. They ease the pain by turning hurt into humor. They attack maudlinism because it devalues genuine sentiment. Nature, having failed to equip them with a servicable denial mechanism, has endowed them with astute perception and sly wit. Curmudgeons are mockers and debunkers whose bitterness is a symptom rather than a disease. They can't compromise their standards and can't manage the suspension of disbelief necessary for feigned cheerfulness. Their awareness is a curse. Perhaps curmudgeons have gotten a bad rap in the same way that the messenger is blamed for the message: They have the temerity to comment on the human condition without apology. They not only refuse to applaud mediocrity, they howl it down with morose glee. Their versions of the truth unsettle us, and we hold it against them, even though they soften it with humor.
Jon Winokur, ( )
I find it difficult to feel responsible for the suffering of others. That's why I find war so hard to bear. It's the same with animals: I feel the less harm I do, the lighter my heart. I love a light heart. And when I know I'm causing suffering, I feel the heaviness of it. It's a physical pain. So it's self-interest that I don't want to cause harm.
Alice Walker, author (b. 1944 )
Just praise is only a debt, but flattery is a present.
Samuel Johnson, lexicographer (1709-1784 )
The art of medicine consists in amusing the patient while nature cures the disease.
Voltaire, philosopher and writer (1694-1778 )
The only fence against the world is a thorough knowledge of it.
John Locke, philosopher (1632-1704 )
We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.
Martin Luther King, Jr., statesman, Nobel laureate (1929-1968 )
To fall in love is to create a religion that has a fallible god.
Jorge Luis Borges, writer (1899-1986 )
What really flatters a man is that you think him worth flattering.
George Bernard Shaw, writer, Nobel laureate (1856-1950 )