Vasant Honavar: Favorite Quotes
Everyone is given the key to the gates of Heaven; The same key opens
the gates of Hell.
J. W. von Goethe:
Everything has been thought of before, but the problem is to think
of it again.
J. W. von Goethe:
What you can do, or think you can, begin it - Boldness has genius,
power, and magic in it.
Ancient American Indian Proverb:
Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children.
Formal symbolic representation of qualitative entities is doomed to
its rightful place of minor significance in a world where flowers and
beautiful women abound.
The thirst for equality can express itself either as a desire to draw
everyone down to one's level, or to raise oneself and everyone else up.
Crowfoot, Blackfoot warrior and orator:
What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath
of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across
the grass and loses itself in the sunset.
There is one thing one has to have: either a soul that is cheerful by
nature, or a soul made cheerful by work, love, art, and knowledge.
I want to know how God created this world. I am not interested in this
or that phenomenon, in the spectrum of this or that element. I want to
know His thoughts; the rest are details.
The scientist does not study nature because it is useful; he studies it
because he delights in it, and he delights in it because it is beautiful.
If nature were not beautiful, it would not be worth knowing, and if
nature were not worth knowing, life would not be worth living.
Eagle Chief (Letakos-Lesa) Pawnee:
All things in the world are two. In our minds we are two, good and evil.
eyes we see two things, things that are fair and things that are ugly....
We have the
right hand that strikes and makes for evil, and we have the left hand full of
near the heart. One foot may lead us to an evil way, the other foot may lead
us to a good. So are all things two, all two.
In the beginning, there was Chaos. Chaos nurtures Progress. Progress
enhances Order. Order tries to defy Chaos at all cost. But my friend,
if and when Order wins the final battle against Chaos, I will mourn.
'Cause Progress will be dead.
The most terrible thing about death is that a life-time's reading is
laid to waste.
Mourning Dove Salish:
Everything on the earth has a purpose, every disease an herb to cure it,
and every person a mission. This is the Indian theory of existence.
Edgar Allen Poe:
I have great faith in fools; My friends call it self-confidence.
Genius may have its limitations but stupidity is not thus handicapped.
Chief Aupumut, Mohican:
When it comes time to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with the fear of death, so when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song, and die like a hero going home.
I was born in Iowa (or was it Indiana? or Idaho?). I lived there for almost a month before I had seen
everything there was to see and done everything there was to do.
Stop the world! I want to get off!!
B. C. Forbes:
The most profitless things to manufacture are excuses.
Qwatsinas (Hereditary Chief Edward Moody), Nuxalk Nation:
We must protect the forests for our children, grandchildren and children yet
to be born. We must protect the forests for those who can't speak for
themselves such as the birds, animals, fish and trees.
It takes courage to attempt the impossible. What would we think of Moses
today if when it was time to part the red sea, he had said "Why don't you
guys go build a bridge?"
A wee child toddling in a wonder world, I prefer to their dogma my excursions
into the natural gardens where the voice of the Great Spirit is heard in the
twittering of birds, the rippling of mighty waters, and the sweet breathing of
flowers. If this is Paganism, then at present, at least, I am a Pagan.
A goal is a dream with a deadline.
B. F. Skinner:
The real problem is not whether machines think, but whether men do.
The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to venture
a little way past them into the impossible.
James Clerk Maxwell:
The only laws of matter are those that our minds must fabricate and the
only laws of mind are fabricated for it by matter.
George Bernard Shaw:
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one
persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress
depends on the unreasonable man.
History is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake.
All are lunatics; but one who can analyze one's delusions is called a
Alfred North Whitehead:
Civilization advances by extending the number of important operations
which we can perform without thinking about them. Operations of thought
are cavalry charges in a battle - they are limited in number, they require
fresh horses, and must only be made at decisive moments.
G. K. Chesterton:
You can only find truth with logic if you have already found truth without it.
Truth is stranger than fiction; fiction has to make sense.
My theology, briefly, is that the universe was dictated but not signed.
The point of philosophy is to start with something so simple as to seem not
worth stating, and to end with something so paradoxical that no one will
It is unworthy of excellent men to lose hours like slaves in the labor of
calculation which could safely be relegated to machines.
Mathematics belongs to man, not to God. When a man proves a positive integer
to exist, he should show how to find it. If God has mathematics of His own
that needs to be done, let Him do it Himself.
Science probes; it does not prove. Imagine Newton's reaction to an objector
of his law of gravity who argued that he could not establish a universal law
because he had not observed every falling apple, much less proved the law of
gravity - there might, after all, be an apple that levitates!
Brother, can you spare a paradigm?
That which does not kill you only makes you stronger.
R. S. Thomas:
The old men ask for more time; the young waste it. And the philosopher simply
smiles, knowing there is none there.
A reality completely independent of the spirit that conceives it, sees it, or
feels it, is an impossibility. A world so external as that, even if it
existed, would be forever inaccessible to us.
Ask not what's inside your head but what your head's inside of.
Joseph E. Chesterton:
The foundation of teaching is research, and the object of research is
certainly teaching, that is, the diffusion of knowledge.
Why should a group of simple, stable compounds of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen
and nitrogen struggle for billions of years to organize themselves into a
professor of chemistry?
We can do no great things; only small things with great love.