Steven Calder - my quote collection

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I have discovered that all human evil comes from this, man's being unable to sit still and quiet in a room alone.

He must be very ignorant for he answers every question he is asked.
Rest is a good thing, but boredom is its brother.
Anything that is too stupid to be spoken is sung.
Let us work without theorizing, 'Tis the only way to make life endurable.
There is a great deal of unmapped country within us which would have to be taken into account in an explanation of our gusts and storms.
It is never too late to be what you might have been.
A desire to be observed, considered, esteemed, praised, beloved, and admired by his fellows is one of the earliest as well as the keenest dispositions discovered in the heart of man.
Power always thinks it has a great soul and vast views beyond the comprehension of the weak.
You must have the devil in you to succeed in the arts.
Divorce is probably of nearly the same date as marriage. I believe, however, that marriage is some weeks the more ancient.
In my life, I have prayed but one prayer: oh Lord, make my enemies ridiculous. And God granted it.
We are all full of weakness and errors; let us mutually pardon each other our follies it is the first law of nature.
It is hard to free fools from the chains they revere.
May God defend me from my friends; I can defend myself from my enemies.
Shun idleness is the rust that attaches itself to the most brilliant metals.
I believe that there never was a creator of a philosophical system who did not confess at the end of his life that he had wasted his time. It must be admitted that the inventors of the mechanical arts have been much more useful to men that the inventors of syllogisms. He who imagined a ship towers considerably above him who imagined innate ideas.
Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties.
The quest for certainty blocks the search for meaning. Uncertainty is the very condition to impel man to unfold his powers.
Modern man thinks he loses something - time - when he does not do things quickly. Yet he does not know what to do with the time he gains -- except kill it.
A man can be destroyed but not defeated.
Eschew the monumental. Shun the Epic. All the guys who can paint great big pictures can paint great small ones.
It's enough for you to do it once for a few men to remember you. But if you do it year after year, then many people remember you and they tell it to their children, and their children and grandchildren remember and, if it concerns books, they can read them. And if it's good enough, it will last as long as there are human beings.
In going where you have to go, and doing what you have to do, and seeing what you have to see, you dull and blunt the instrument you write with. But I would rather have it bent and dulled and know I had to put it on the grindstone again and hammer it into shape and put a whetstone to it, and know that I had something to write about, than to have it bright and shining and nothing to say, or smooth and well oiled in the closet, but unused.
Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.
You know that fiction, prose rather, is possibly the roughest trade of all in writing. You do not have the reference, the old important reference. You have the sheet of blank paper, the pencil, and the obligation to invent truer than things can be true. You have to take what is not palpable and make it completely palpable and also have it seem normal and so that it can become a part of experience of the person who reads it.
When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.
You know lots of criticism is written by characters who are very academic and think it is a sign you are worthless if you make jokes or kid or even clown. I wouldn't kid Our Lord if he was on the cross. But I would attempt a joke with him if I ran into him chasing the money changers out of the temple.
Real firmness is good for anything; strut is good for nothing.
Men give me credit for some genius. All the genius I have is this. When I have a subject in mind. I study it profoundly. Day and night it is before me. My mind becomes pervaded with it... the effort which I have made is what people are pleased to call the fruit of genius. It is the fruit of labor and thought.
Such a wife as I want... must be young, handsome I lay most stress upon a good shape, sensible a little learning will do, well-bread, chaste, and tender. As to religion, a moderate stock will satisfy me. She must believe in God and hate a saint.
The sacred rights of mankind are not to be rummaged for among old parchments or musty records. They are written, as with a sunbeam, in the whole volume of human nature, by the hand of the divinity itself; and can never be erased or obscured by mortal power.
The fundamental source of all your errors, sophisms, and false reasonings, is a total ignorance of the natural rights of mankind. Were you once to become acquainted with these, you could never entertain a thought, that all men are not, by nature, entitled to a parity of privileges. You would be convinced, that natural liberty is a gift of the beneficent Creator, to the whole human race; and that civil liberty is founded in that; and cannot be wrested from any people, without the most manifest violation of justice. Civil liberty is only natural liberty, modified and secured by the sanctions of civil society. It is not a thing, in its own nature, precarious and dependent on human will and caprice; but it is conformable to the constitution of man, as well as necessary to the well-being of society.
Love is the only sane and satisfactory answer to the problem of human existence.
If I am what I have and if I lose what I have who then am I?
Not he who has much is rich, but he who gives much.
Decadence is a difficult word to use since it has become little more than a term of abuse applied by critics to anything they do not yet understand or which seems to differ from their moral concepts.

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