Quotes Log

Quotes Log

Interesting quotes are the ones that could be the summary of complex books. They are too brief to teach anything substantially but perfectly suited to remind.

So here are, in no particular order, 70+ quotes that resonated with me. I update the list every now and then.

In all affairs, it’s a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the thing you have long taken for granted - Bertrand Russell
Like all dreamers, I mistook disenchantment for truth - Jean-Paul Sartre
With most men, unbelief in one thing springs from blind belief in another - Georg Christoph Lichtenberg
The problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete. They make one story become the only story - Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Half-knowledge is more victorious than whole knowledge: it understands things as being more simple than they are and this renders its opinions more easily intelligible and more convincing - Friedrich Nietzsche
In order to make delicious food, you must eat delicious food. One must develop a palate capable of discerning good and bad. Without good taste, you can’t make good food - Jiro Ono
The more we frequent men, the blacker our thoughts; and when, to clarify them, we return to our solitude, we find there the shadow they have cast - E. M. Cioran
“Keeping it real” is a waste of the medium. More fun to become the most interesting or helpful version of you - Austin Kleon
Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself - George Bernard Shaw
Beware the lollipop of mediocrity; lick it once and you’ll suck forever - Brian Wilson
It’s a terrible thing, I think, in life to wait until you’re ready. I have this feeling now that actually no one is ever ready to do anything. There is almost no such thing as ready. There is only now. And you may as well do it now. Generally speaking, now is as good a time as any - Hugh Laurie
Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit, wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad - Miles Kington
A good book is more intelligent than its author. It can say things that the writer is not aware of - Umberto Eco
I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was - Muhammad Ali
There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it - Alfred Hitchcock
You know how you survive? You make people need you. You survive because you make them need what you have. And then they have nowhere else to go - Anthony Michael Hall as Bill Gates in Pirates of Silicon Valley
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Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see - Arthur Schopenhauer
You spend a lifetime playing music to learn what not to play - Dizzy Gillespie
That human being is free, we say, who exists for his own sake and not for another’s - Aristotle
Men will act when they are convinced that their cause is 100 percent on the side of the angels and that the opposition are 100 percent on the side of the devil… There can be no action until issues are polarized to this degree - Saul Alinsky
We may seek a fortune for no greater reason than to secure the respect and attention of people who would otherwise look straight through us - Alain de Botton
The mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions - Oliver Wendell Holmes
As to methods, there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The man who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man who tries methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble - Ralph Waldo Emerson
If one only wished to be happy, this could be easily accomplished; but we wish to be happier than other people, and this is always difficult, for we believe others to be happier than they are - Montesquieu
After I’m dead I’d rather have people ask why I have no monument than why I have one - Cato the Elder
The trouble with being punctual is that nobody’s there to appreciate it - Franklin P. Jones
Have more than thou showest, speak less than thou knowest - William Shakespeare
How sad it is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdomIsaac Asimov
Speak When You’re Angry and You’ll Make the Best Speech You’ll Ever RegretGroucho Marx
A ship is safe in harbor, but that’s not what ships are for - William G.T. Shedd
Intellectuals are naturally attracted by the idea of a planned society, in the belief that they will be in charge of it - Sir Roger Scruton
I see no good in having several lords; Let one alone be master, let one alone be king. - Homer, according to Étienne de la Boétie

[Note: This one sounds way better in french: “ D'avoir plusieurs seigneurs aucun bien je n'y vois. Qu'un, sans plus, soit le maître et qu'un seul soit le roi”]

I don’t care who writes a nation’s laws, or crafts its advanced treaties, if I can write its economics textbooks - Paul A. Samuelson
Man’s achievements rest upon the use of symbols…. we must consider ourselves as a symbolic, semantic class of life, and those who rule the symbols, rule us - Alfred Korzybski
College: two hundred people reading the same book. An obvious mistake. Two hundred people can read two hundred books - John Cage
The mind of man at one and the same time is both the glory and the shame of the universe - Blaise Pascal
Something must happen and that explains most human commitments. Something must happen even loveless slavery, even war or death - Albert Camus
A definition is the start of an argument, not the end of one - Neil Postman
There are two kinds of truth, small truth and great truth. You can recognize a small truth because its opposite is a falsehood. The opposite of a great truth is another truth - Niels Bohr
To be gentle, tolerant, wise and reasonable requires a goodly portion of toughness - Peter Ustinov
The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera - Dorothea Lange
If one would give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest man, I would find something to have him hanged - Cardinal Richelieu
‘Monster’ is a relative term. To a canary, a cat is a monster. We’ve just gotten used to being the cat - Dr. Henry Wu, Jurassic World
Like Saturn, the revolution devours its children - Jacques Mallet du Pan
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I’m fantasizing, but the world is starting to look like my fantasies - André Malraux
It’s easier to hold your principles 100 percent of the time than it is to hold them 98 percent of the time - Clayton M. Christensen
Once you have a point of view all history will back you up - Van Wyck Brooks
If you got ‘em by the balls, their hearts and minds will follow - Lyndon Baines Johnson

The purpose of an organization is to enable common men to do uncommon things - Peter Drucker
The difference between the sane and the insane is that the sane have power to lock up the insane - Hunter Thompson
I start in the middle of a sentence and move both directions at once - John Coltrane
Laws are like cobwebs, which may catch small flies, but let wasps and hornets break through - Jonathan Swift
Civilization advances by extending the number of important operations which we can perform without thinking about them - Alfred North Whitehead
Absence diminishes little passions and increases great ones, as wind extinguishes candles and fans a fire - François de La Rochefoucauld
As a well-spent day brings happy sleep, so a life well spent brings happy death - Leonardo Da Vinci
An organization, as a whole, is more conservative and resistant to change than the individuals who comprise it. Do not assume that general agreement will lead to change—it takes substantial energy to move a group, even when all are on board - Ed Catmull
If you run an ambulance company, you need to be the fastest at response. (The “most quick”). Anything else is a reason for potential users to switch.On the other hand, if you’re delivering flowers, ‘fast enough’ is plenty fast.Everyone competes on something. That thing you compete on is your most. The other things you do, those need to be enough - Seth Godin
I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve (or save) the world and a desire to enjoy (or savor) the world. This makes it hard to plan the day - E. B. White
My soul is a hidden orchestra; I know not what instruments, what fiddlestrings and harps, drums and tamboura I sound and clash inside myself. All I hear is the symphony - Fernando Pessoa
We have this idea that love is supposed to last forever. But love isn’t like that. It’s a free-flowing energy that comes and goes when it pleases. Sometimes, it stays for life; other times it stays for a second, a day, a month or a year. So don’t fear love when it comes simply because it makes you vulnerable. But don’t be surprised when it leaves either. Just be glad you had the opportunity to experience it - Neil Strauss
I don’t care to belong to any club that will have me as a member - Groucho Marx
All knowledge degenerates into probability - David Hume
By nothing do men show their character more than by the things they laugh at - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Odysseus wept when he heard the poet sing of his great deeds abroad because once sung, they were no longer his alone. They belonged to anyone who heard the song - Ward Just
Drama is anticipation mingled with uncertainty - William Archer
Beware the investment activity that produces applause; the great moves are usually greeted by yawns - Warren Buffett
A novel can often be a divided man’s conversation with himself - Mohsin Hamid
The slogan of Hell: Eat or be eaten. The slogan of Heaven: Eat and be eaten - W.H. Auden
The society which scorns excellence in plumbing as a humble activity and tolerates shoddiness in philosophy because it is an exalted activity will have neither good plumbing nor good philosophy: neither its pipes nor its theories will hold water - John W. Gardner
Unfortunately, the balance of nature decrees that a super-abundance of dreams is paid for by a growing potential for nightmares - Peter Ustinov
If gambling is exciting, you’re doing it wrong - Jordan Ellenberg
All human knowledge begins with intuitions, proceeds from thence to concepts, and ends with ideas - Immanuel Kant
Your handwriting. The way you walk. Which china pattern you choose. It’s all giving you away. Everything you do shows your hand. Everything is a self-portrait. Everything is a diary. - Chuck Palahniuk
Any man, in the right circumstances, could be dehumanized by panic. - Arthur C. Clarke
Nature never appeals to intelligence until habit and instinct are useless. There is no intelligence where there is no need of change - H.G. Wells
There are two aesthetics: the passive aesthetic of mirrors and the active aes­thetic of prisms. When guided by the first, art transforms itself into an ob­jective copy of its surroundings or of the physical history of the individual. When guided by the second, art frees itself, uses the world as its own in­strument, and creates — beyond any spatial and temporal prison — its own personal vision - Jorge Luis Borges
What destroys a man more quickly than to work, think and feel without inner necessity, without any deep personal desire, without pleasure - as a mere automaton of duty? - Friedrich Nietzsche
A healthy man wants a thousand things. A sick man only wants one - Confucius

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