Our dilemma is that we hate change and love it at the same time; what we really want is for things to remain the same but get better.
But what is significant is that if you don't want to like and accept somebody, one excuse is as good as another. The objective facts don't matter, and the reasons are never as ‘reasonable' as we like to think they are.
A 'penchant for telling the truth' can cripple a candidates chances faster than being caught in flagrante delicto with the governor's wife.
Happiness held is the seed; happiness shared is the flower. A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery while on a detour. Happiness is a direction, not a place.
The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows.
The truest test of independent judgment is being able to dislike someone who admires us, and to admire someone who dislikes us.
Elitism is the slur directed at merit by mediocrity.
If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem, but the perpetual human predicament is that the answer soon poses its own problems.
When you run into someone who is disagreeable to others, you may be sure he is uncomfortable with himself; the amount of pain we inflict upon others is directly proportional to the amount we feel within us.
Many persons of high intelligence have notoriously poor judgement.
Democracy is the only system that persists in asking the powers that be whether they are the powers that ought to be.
Gourmet: Usually little more than a glutton festooned with credit cards.
Every morning I take out my bankbook, stare at it, shudder -- and turn quickly to my typewriter.
A famously wise old man in a village was once asked how he came by his wisdom. "I got it from my good judgment," he answered. And where did his good judgment come from? "I got it from my bad judgment."
The most important tactic in an argument, next to being right, is to leave an escape hatch for your opponent, so that he can gracefully swing over to your side without an embarrassing loss of face.
The art of listening needs its highest development in listening to oneself; our most important task is to develop an ear that can really hear what we're saying.
When we have "second thoughts" about something, our first thoughts don't seem like thoughts at all -- just feelings.
Middle Age is that perplexing time of life when we hear two voices calling us, one saying, Why not? and the other, Why bother?
Man's unique agony as a species consists in his perpetual conflict between the desire to stand out and the need to blend in.
But the culture-vultures and the intellectual snobs, and the self-appointed guardians of the Muses, often frighten off the average person from the free development of this appetite.
History repeats itself, but in such cunning disguise that we never detect the resemblance until the damage is done.
Any creed whose basic doctrines do not include respect for the creeds of others, is simply power politics masquerading as philosophy.
Many a secret that cannot be pried out by curiosity can be drawn out by indifference.
We truly possess only what we are able to renounce; otherwise, we are simply possessed by our possessions.
We can often endure an extra pound of pain far more easily than we can suffer the withdrawal of an ounce of accustomed pleasure.
As long as there are human beings, there will be the idea of brotherhood -- and an almost total inability to practice it.
The two words 'information' and 'communication' are often used interchangeably, but they signify quite different things. Information is giving out; communication is getting through.
The pessimist sees only the tunnel; the optimist sees the light at the end of the tunnel; the realist sees the tunnel and the light -- and the next tunnel.
Why do so many people yearn for an eternal life when they don't even know what to do with themselves in this brief one?
There is no such thing as an "atrocity" in warfare that is greater than the atrocity of warfare itself.
Those who imagine that the world is against them have generally conspired to make it true.
Just about the only interruption we don't object to is applause.
Happiness is a direction, not a place.
As the horsepower in modern automobiles steadily rises, the congestion of traffic steadily lowers the average possible speed of your car. This is known as Progress.
Knowledge fills a large brain; it merely inflates a small one.
Much as a teacher may wince at the thought, he is also an entertainer--for unless he can hold his audience, he cannot really instruct or edify them.
You may be sure that when a man begins to call himself a realist he is preparing to do something that he is secretly ashamed of doing.
The time to relax is when you don't have time for it.
Character is something you forge for yourself; temperament is something you are born with and can only slightly modify.
The commonest fallacy among women is that simply having children makes them a mother -- which is as absurd as believing that having a piano makes one a musician.
Any philosophy that can be put in a nutshell belongs there.
If a small thing has the power to make you angry, does that not indicate something about your size?
The best thing you can give children, next to good habits,
are good memories.
Filth is always a sign of weakness -- in the mouth of the user and in the mind of the writer.
The principal difference between love and hate is that love is a irradiation, and hate is a concentration. Love makes everything lovely; hate concentrates itself on the object of its hatred.
Ignorance per se is not nearly as dangerous as ignorance of ignorance.
Once we assuage our conscience by calling something a "necessary evil," it begins to look more and more necessary and less and less evil.
The severest test of character is not so much the ability to keep a secret as it is, when the secret is finally out, to refrain from disclosing that you knew it all along.
As WArden Lawes once said of convicts, no man can be called a failure until he has tried something he really likes, and fails at it.
We have not passed that subtle line between childhood and adulthood until we have stopped saying 'It got lost,' and say, 'I lost it.'
Nobody can be so amusingly arrogant as a young man who has just discovered an old idea and thinks it is his own.
Marriages we regard as the happiest are those in which each of the partners believes he or she got the best of it.
Many married couples separate because they quarrel incessantly, but just as many separate because they were never honest enough or courageous enough to quarrel when they should have.
A winner knows how much he still has to learn, even when he is considered an expert by others; a loser wants to be considered an expert by others before he has learned enough to know how little he knows.
Every rule in the book can be broken, except one -- be who you are, and become all you were meant to be.
If the devil could be persuaded to write a bible, he would title it, "You Only Live Once.
If you want to know what a man's character is really like... ask him to tell you the living person he most admires -- for hero worship is the truest index of a man's private nature.
Terrorism" is what we call the violence of the weak, and we condemn it; "war" is what we call the violence of the strong, and we glorify it.
The world has always been betrayed by decent men with bad ideals.
The real danger is not that computers will begin to think like men, but that men will begin to think like computers.
The primary purpose of a liberal education is to make one's mind a pleasant place in which to spend one's leisure.
There's no point in burying a hatchet if you're going to put up a marker on the site.
At it's highest level, the purpose of teaching is not to teach--it is to inspire the desire for learning. Once a student's mind is set on fire, it will find a way to provide its own fuel.
Many people feel "guilty" about things they shouldn't feel guilty about, in order to shut out feelings of guilt about things they should feel guilty about.
Western civilization has not yet learned the lesson that the energy we expend in 'getting things done' is less important than the moral strength it takes to decide what is worth doing and what is right to do.
The art of living consists in knowing which impulses to obey and which must be made to obey.
Most people are mirrors, reflecting the moods and emotions of the times; few are windows, bringing light to bear on the dark corners where troubles fester. The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows.
The deepest and rarest kind of courage has nothing to do with feats or obstacles in the outside world; and, indeed, has nothing to do with the outside world -- it is the courage to be who you are.
Genealogy: A perverse preoccupation of those who seek to demonstrate that their forebears were better people than they are.
Somebody who never got over the embarrassing fact that he was born in bed with a lady.
We evaluate others with a Godlike justice, but we want them to evaluate us with a Godlike compassion.
The three hardest tasks in the world are neither physical feats nor intellectual achievements, but moral acts: to return love for hate, to include the excluded, and to say, 'I was wrong'.
Maturity begins when we're content to feel we're right about something without feeling the necessity to prove someone else wrong.
Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable.
The reason that truth is stranger than fiction is that fiction has to have a rational thread running through it in order to be believable, whereas reality may be totally irrational.
An idealist believes the short run doesn't count. A cynic believes the long run doesn't matter. A realist believes that what is done or left undone in the short run determines the long run.
Hockey's the only place where a guy can go nowadays and watch two white guys fight.
Perseverance is the most overrated of traits, if it is unaccompanied by talent; beating your head against a wall is more likely to produce a concussion in the head than a hole in the wall.
Those obsessed with health are not healthy; the first requisite of good health is a certain calculated carelessness about oneself.