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The human race is governed by its imagination.

A celebrated people lose dignity upon a closer view.
In politics, an absurdity is not a handicap.
The herd seek out the great, not for their sake but for their influence; and the great welcome them out of vanity or need.
It is the cause, not the death that makes the martyr.
Ability is of little account without opportunity.
Glory is fleeting, but obscurity is forever.
Fortune has something of the nature of a woman. If she is too intensely wooed, she commonly goes the further away.
Jazz music is an intensified feeling of nonchalance.
We respond to a drama to that extent to which it corresponds to our dream life.
Justice is my being allowed to do whatever I like. Injustice is whatever prevents my doing so.
The citizen who criticizes his country is paying it an implied tribute.
The distinctions separating the social classes are false; in the last analysis they rest on force.
Whatever is not nailed down is mine. What I can pry loose is not nailed down.
Fools take to themselves the respect that is given to their office.
Respect commands itself and it can neither be given nor withheld when it is due.
All the gods are dead except the god of war.
The injuries we do and the injuries we suffer are seldom weighed on the same scales.
Two great talkers will not travel far together.
To copy others is necessary, but to copy oneself is pathetic.
It is your work in life that is your ultimate seduction.
The genius of Einstein leads to Hiroshima.
Never permit a dichotomy to rule your life, a dichotomy in which you hate what you do so you can have pleasure in your spare time. Look for a situation in which your work will give you as much happiness as your spare time.
Every act of creation is first of all an act of destruction.
An idea is a point of departure and no more. As soon as you elaborate it, it becomes transformed by thought.
Ah, good taste! What a dreadful thing! Taste is the enemy of creativeness.
Everything you can imagine is real.
To finish a work? To finish a picture? What nonsense! To finish it means to be through with it, to kill it, to rid it of its soul, to give it its final blow the coup de grace for the painter as well as for the picture.
The chief enemy of creativity is good taste.
Whenever you argue with another wiser than yourself in order that others may admire your wisdom, they will discover your ignorance.
I argue thee that love is life. And life hath immortality.
The excellency of every art is its intensity, capable of making all disagreeable evaporate.
I am certain of nothing but the holiness of the heart's affections, and the truth of imagination.
Failure is in a sense the highway to success, as each discovery of what is false leads us to seek earnestly after what is true.
Manners are of more importance than laws. Manners are what vex or soothe, corrupt or purify, exalt or debase, barbarize or refine us, by a constant, steady, uniform, insensible operation, like that of the air we breathe in.
When Man evolved Pity, he did a queer thing -- deprived himself of the power of living life as it is without wishing it to become something different.
Tis not enough to help the feeble up, but to support him after.
Bad laws are the worst form of tyranny.
Never despair, but if you do, work on in despair.
Nothing would be done at all if one waited until one could do it so well that no one could find fault with it.
The body politic, as well as the human body, begins to die as soon as it is born, and carries itself the causes of its destruction.
Adversity is a great teacher, but this teacher makes us pay dearly for its instruction; and often the profit we derive, is not worth the price we paid.
We are what we imagine ourselves to be.
Artists use frauds to make human beings seem more wonderful than they really are. Dancers show us human beings who move much more gracefully than human beings really move. Films and books and plays show us people talking much more entertainingly than people.
If somebody says, I love you, to me, I feel as though I had a pistol pointed at my head. What can anybody reply under such conditions but that which the pistol-holder requires? I love you, too.
Thinking doesn't seem to help very much. The human brain is too high-powered to have many practical uses in this particular universe.
The human mind will not be confined to any limits.
The mind of man is like a clock that is always running down, and requires to be constantly wound up.
A country cannot subsist well without liberty, nor liberty without virtue.
The first step towards vice is to shroud innocent actions in mystery, and whoever likes to conceal something sooner or later has reason to conceal it.
Who is sure of their own motives can in confidence advance or retreat.
Surely all art is the result of one's having been in danger, of having gone through an experience all the way to the end, where no one can go any further.
Art is man's expression of his joy in labor.
Art raises its head where creeds relax.
The word Christianity is already a misunderstanding -- in reality there has been only one Christian, and he died on the Cross.
Only sick music makes money today.
Art is long, life short, judgment difficult, opportunity transient.
People will accept your ideas much more readily if you tell them Benjamin Franklin said it first.
Ideas lose themselves as quickly as quail, and one must wing them the minute they rise out of the grass, or they are gone.
Wise men are not wise at all hours, and will speak five times from their taste or their humor, to once from their reason.
Contradiction is not a sign of falsity, nor the lack of contradiction a sign of truth.
Desire and force between them are responsible for all our actions; desire causes our voluntary acts, force our involuntary.
The hero draws inspiration from the virtue of his ancestors.
Don't play what's there, play what's not there.
Do not fear mistakes -- there are none.
It is cruel, you know, that music should be so beautiful. It has the beauty of loneliness and of pain: of strength and freedom. The beauty of disappointment and never-satisfied love. The cruel beauty of nature, and everlasting beauty of monotony.
For art to exist, for any sort of aesthetic activity or perception to exist, a certain physiological precondition is indispensable: intoxication.
Most of the time in married life is taken up by talk.
No man lies so boldly as the man who is indignant.
In every ascetic morality man worships a part of himself as God and for that he needs to diabolize the other part.
There are no facts, only interpretations.
These people abstain, it is true: but the bitch Sensuality glares enviously out of all they do.
Many people profess Christianity. Very few live it-almost none. And when you live it people may think you're crazy. It has been truthfully said that the world is equally shocked by one who repudiates Christianity as by one who practices it.
The doctrine of equality! There exists no more poisonous poison: for it seems to be preached by justice itself, while it is the end of justice.
Mathematics would certainly have not come into existence if one had known from the beginning that there was in nature no exactly straight line, no actual circle, no absolute magnitude.
A good composer does not imitate; he steals.
Today, music heralds... the establishment of a society of repetition in which nothing will happen anymore.
Rock 'n Roll is monotony tinged with hysteria.
That which does not kill us makes us stronger.
Be sure you put your feet in the right place, then stand firm.
What is grand is necessarily obscure to weak men. That which can be made explicit to the idiot is not worth my care.
Obscurity brings safety.
Sometimes it helps to know that I just can't do it all. One step at a time is all that's possible -- even when those steps are taken on the run.
It is in the interests of our society to promote those things that take the edge off, keep us busy with our fixes, and keep us slightly numbed out and zombie like. In this way our modern consumer society itself functions as an addict.
Perfect freedom is as necessary to the health and vigor of commerce as it is to the health and vigor of citizenship.
None who have always been free can understand the terrible fascinating power of the hope of freedom to those who are not free.
Throughout human history, the apostles of purity, those who have claimed to possess a total explanation, have wrought havoc among mere mixed-up human beings.
The measure of your quality as a public person, as a citizen, is the gap between what you do and what you say.
We see things as we are, not as they are.
Burn down your cities and leave our farms, and your cities will spring up again as if by magic; but destroy our farms and the grass will grow in the streets of every city in the country. We will answer their demand for a gold standard by saying to them: You shall not press down upon the brow of labor this crown of thorns, you shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold.
The President is merely the most important among a large number of public servants. He should be supported or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able, and disinterested service to the nation as a whole. Therefore it is absolutely necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly as necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile. To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. Nothing but the truth should be spoken about him or any one else. But it is even more important to tell the truth, pleasant or unpleasant, about him than about any one else.
The most practical kind of politics is the politics of decency.
Those who play with the devil's toys will be brought by degrees to wield his sword.
No cause has he to say his doom is harsh, who's made the master of his destiny.
Belief is the death of intelligence. As soon as one believes a doctrine of any sort, or assumes certitude, one stops thinking about that aspect of existence.
You can change your beliefs so they empower your dreams and desires. Create a strong belief in yourself and what you want.
There are two ways of being happy: We must either diminish our wants or augment our means -- either may do -- the result is the same and it is for each man to decide for himself and to do that which happens to be easier.
Those who govern, having much business on their hands, do not generally like to take the trouble of considering and carrying into execution new projects. The best public measures are therefore seldom adopted from previous wisdom, but forced by the occasion.
On 16 September 1985, when the Commerce Department announced that the United States had become a debtor nation, the American Empire died.
CREATIVITY is thinking up new things. INNOVATION is doing new things.
Promises may fit the friends, but non-performance will turn them into enemies.
Our necessities never equal our wants.
Content makes poor men rich; discontentment makes rich men poor.
Most fools think they are only ignorant.
I have forced myself to contradict myself in order to avoid conforming to my own taste.
I have discovered that people with money have no imagination, and people with imagination have no money.
The soul without imagination is what an observatory would be without a telescope.
The soul of God is poured into the world through the thoughts of men.
The path is smooth that leadeth on to danger.
We must risk going too far to discover just how far we can go.
Playing safe is probably the most unsafe thing in the world. You cannot stand still. You must go forward.
You have to be able to center yourself, to let all of your emotions go... Don't ever forget that you play with your soul as well as your body.
In the case of good books, the point is not how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.
This became a credo of mine: attempt the impossible in order to improve your work.
Who then is the man who fears the Lord? He will instruct him in the way chosen for him. [Psalm 25:12]
The secret source of humor itself is not joy but sorrow. There is no humor in heaven.
Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please.
Under certain circumstances, profanity provides a relief denied even to prayer.
To keep your secret is wisdom; but to expect others to keep it is folly.
It's not that I'm so smart, it's just that I stay with problems longer.
People who take risks are the people you'll lose against.
If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary.
Constantly choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil.
A friend to everybody and to nobody is the same thing.
In nature, the emphasis is in what is rather than what ought to be.
Happiness is not pleasure, it is victory.
The history of all countries shows that the working class exclusively by its own effort is able to develop only trade-union consciousness.
Freedom in capitalist society always remains about the same as it was in ancient Greek republics: Freedom for slave owners.
Only you can hold yourself back, only you can stand in your own way. Only you can help yourself.
That's what being in the working class is all about -- how to get out of it.
Live your life as though your every act were to become a universal law.
It is respectable to have no illusions, and safe, and profitable and dull.
If you make a great deal of Christ, He will make a great deal of you; But it you make but little of Christ, He will make but little of you.
Any hope that America would finally grow up vanished with the rise of fundamentalist Christianity. Fundamentalism, with its born-again regression, its pink-and-gold concept of heaven, its literal-mindedness, its rambunctious good cheer... its anti-intellectualism... its puerile hymns... and its faith-healing... are made to order for King Kid America.
If Christians would really live according to the teachings of Christ, as found in the Bible, all of India would be Christian today.
No culture can live if it attempts to be exclusive.
Never pray for justice, because you might get some.
If you would judge, understand.
If thou art a man, admire those who attempt great things, even though they fail.
Leisure without literature is death and burial alive.
Happiness does not lie in happiness, but in the achievement of it.
A real gentleman, even if he loses everything he owns, must show no emotion. Money must be so far beneath a gentleman that it is hardly worth troubling about.
To be too conscious is an illness. A real thorough going illness.
Sarcasm: the last refuge of modest and chaste-souled people when the privacy of their soul is coarsely and intrusively invaded.

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