Absurd

It's an absurd error to put modern English literature in the curriculum. You should read contemporary literature for pleasure or not at all. You shouldn't be taught to monkey with it.

I had become aware, as early as my college days, that no opinion, however absurd and incredible can be imagined, that has not been held by one of the philosophers.

Nothing can be proposed so wild or so absurd as not to find a party, and often a very large party to espouse it.

Evolution has no long-term goal. There is no long-distance target, no final perfection to serve as a criterion for selection, although human vanity cherishes the absurd notion that our species is the final goal of evolution.

There's only any point in believing something if it's not true. And it's not just faith itself: it's the idea that faith is a virtue and the less evidence there is, the more virtuous it is. Things for which there is mere evidence are just too easy, and it's no test of faith. In order to have a test of your faith, you must be asked to believe really daft things like the transubstantiation, you know, the blood of Christ turning into wine, and stuff. That is so manifestly absurd that you've got to be a really great believer in order to believe it. You're actually showing off your believing credentials by the ability to believe something like that. If it were an easy thing to believe, substantiated by facts, then it wouldn't be any great achievement.

The theory of quantum electrodynamics describes Nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And it agrees fully with experiment. So I hope you accept Nature as She is

It is a good plan, with a young person of a character to be much affected by ludicrous and absurd representations, to show him plainly by examples that there is nothing which may not be thus represented. He will hardly need to be told that everything is not a mere joke.

During the years when my own daughters were pupils in this school I attended many of these gatherings, and heard many speeches made by men who stood where I stand at this moment. They said all sorts of things. I recall one speaker who said that as he looked out at the girls who were assembled to receive prizes, and to pay their last respects to their school, he felt as though he were looking over a garden of exquisite flowers. He was drunk, poor man, and it would be absurd to treat his remark as though he were speaking on oath.

And I have written three books on the soul Proving absurd all written hitherto And putting us to ignorance again.

As grass and fire cannot coexist in one place, so legality and mercy cannot abide in one soul.

Enter into the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed again to enter the Church, be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent.

But thanks be to God, since my leaving drinking of wine, I do find myself much better and to mind my business better and to spend less money, and less time lost in idle company.

Those who say that life is worth living at any cost have already written an epitaph of infamy, for there is no cause and no person that they will not betray to stay alive.

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.

There is no area in our minds reserved for superstition, such as the Greeks had in their mythology; and superstition, under cover of an abstract vocabulary, has revenged itself by invading the entire realm of hought. Our science is like a store filled with the most subtle intellectual devices for solving the most complex problems, and yet we are almost incapable of applying the elementary principles of rational thought. In every sphere, we seem to have lost the very elements of intelligence: the ideas of limit, measure, degree, proportion, relation, comparison, contingency, interdependence, interrelation of means and ends. To keep to the social level, our political universe is peopled exclusively by myths and monsters; all it contains is absolutes and abstract entities. This is illustrated by all the words of our political and social vocabulary: nation, security, capitalism, communism, fascism, order, authority, property, democracy. We never use them in phrases such as: There is democracy to the extent that... or: There is capitalism in so far as... The use of expressions like to the extent that is beyond our intellectual capacity. Each of these words seems to represent for us an absolute reality, unaffected by conditions, or an absolute objective, independent of methods of action, or an absolute evil; and at the same time we make all these words mean, successively or simultaneously, anything whatsoever. Our lives are lived, in actual fact, among changing, varying realities, subject to the casual play of external necessities, and modifying themselves according to specific conditions within specific limits; and yet we act and strive and sacrifice ourselves and others by reference to fixed and isolated abstractions which cannot possibly be related either to one another or to any concrete facts. In this so-called age of technicians, the only battles we know how to fight are battles against windmills.

It was said that I refused to grant any value to the maternal instinct and to love. This was not so. I simply asked that women should experience them truthfully and freely, whereas they often use them as excuses and take refuge in them, only to find themselves imprisoned in that refuge when those emotions have dried up in their hearts. I was accused of preaching sexual promiscuity; but at no point did I ever advise anyone to sleep with just anyone at just any time; my opinion on this subject is that all choices, agreements and refusals should be made independently of institutions, conventions and motives of self-aggrandizement; if the reasons for it are not of the same order as the act itself, then the only result can be lies, distortions and mutilations.

There is something in the New York air that makes sleep useless.

A gruff murmur from the others showed that they were of one mind with the prince. The light of the torches from the walls beat upon the line of stern faces at the high table. They had sat like flint, and the Italian shrank from their inexorable eyes. He looked swiftly round, but armed men choked every entrance. The shadow of death had fallen athwart his soul.

I wanted to end the world but, I'll settle for ending yours.

[The Devil] freely lost the will which he had. And just as he received the possession of it for as long as he had it, so he was able to receive the permanent keeping of what he deserted. But because he deserted, he did not receive. Therefore, that which he did not receive to keep because he deserted it, he did not receive not because God did not give it, but, rather, God did not give it because he did not receive it.