Accident

Whoever undertakes a long Journey, if he be wise, makes it his Business to find out an agreeable Companion. How cautious then should He be, who is to take a Journey for Life, whose Fellow-Traveler must not part with him but at the Grave; his Companion at Bed and Board and Sharer of all the Pleasures and Fatigues of his Journey; as the Wife must be to the Husband! She is no such Sort of Ware, that a Man can be rid of when he pleases: When once that’s purchas’d, no Exchange, no Sale, no Alienation can be made: She is an inseparable Accident to Man: Marriage is a Noose, which, fasten’d about the Neck, runs the closer, and fits more uneasy by our struggling to get loose: ‘Tis a Gordian Knot which none can unty, and being twisted with our Thread of Life, nothing but the Schyth of Death can cut it.

A true history of human events would show a far larger proportion of our acts are the results of sudden impulses and accident, than of that reason of which we so much boast.

Today, every inhabitant of this planet must contemplate the day when it may no longer be habitable. Every man, woman and child lives under a nuclear sword of Damocles, hanging by the slenderest of threads, capable of being cut at any moment by accident, miscalculation or madness. The weapons of war must be abolished before they abolish us.

Right conduct can never, except by some rare accident, be promoted by ignorance or hindered by knowledge.

Look at our present life circumstances, whatever they may be, as the raw material of our learning... We must stop regarding ourselves as victims of circumstances, and start to acknowledge that we are not here purely by accident. The master within is trying to help us wake up by confronting us with our current life situation, which contains all the lessons we need to learn in order to grow into more fully developed human beings.

The universe is but a kaleidoscope which turns within the mind of the so-called thinking being, who is himself a curiosity without a cause, an accident conscious of the great accident around him, and who amuses himself with it so long as the phenomenon of his vision lasts.

It is strictly and philosophically true in Nature and reason that there is no such thing as chance or accident; it being evident that these words do not signify anything really existing, anything that is truly an agent ore the cause of any event; but they signify merely men’s ignorance of the real and immediate cause.

A true history of human events would show that a far larger proportion of our acts as the results of sudden impulses and accident, than of the reason of which we so much boast.

Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives, the cumulative experience of many masters of craftsmanship. Quality also marks the search for an ideal after necessity has been satisfied and mere usefulness achieved.

War is not an art, and accident alone decides the outcome of battles. If two generals confront each other and both are stupid, one necessarily must win.

A philosopher, who purposes only to represent the common sense of mankind in more beautiful and more engaging colors, if by accident he falls into error, goes not farther; but renewing his appeal to common sense, and the natural sentiments of the; mind, returns into the right path, and secures himself from any dangerous illusions.

Whoever shall review his life, will find that the whole tenor of his conduct has been determined by some accident of no apparent moment.

The greatest pleasure I know is to do a good action by stealth, and to have it found out by accident.

We know that we are not limited by the accident of our birth or the timing of it, and we recognize the truth that we have always been around. We can reinhabit time and own our story as a species. We were present back there in the fireball and the rains that streamed down on this still molten planet, and in the primordial seas. We remember that in our mother’s womb, where we wear vestigial gills and tail and fins for hands. We remember that. That information is in us and there is a deep, deep kinship in us, beneath the outer layers of our neocortex or what we learned in school. There is a deep wisdom, a bondedness with our creation, and an ingenuity far beyond what we think we have. And when we expand our notions of what we are to include this story, we will have a wonderful time and we will survive.

Let him speak of his own deeds, and not of those of his forefathers. High birth is mere accident, and not virtue.

There is no such thing as chance; and what seems to us merest accident springs from the deepest source of destiny.

Those who obtain riches by labor, care, and watching, know their value. Those who impart them to sustain and extend knowledge, virtue, and religion, know their use. Those who lose them by accident or fraud know their vanity. And those who experience the difficulties and dangers of preserving them know their perplexities.

A man falls in love just as he falls down stairs. It is an accident... But when he runs in love it is as when he runs in debt; it is done knowingly and intentionally... Both are common enough; and yet less so than what I call catching love.

It is not the eye, that sees the beauty of the heaven, nor the ear, that hears the sweetness of music or the glad tidings of a prosperous accident, but the soul, that perceives all the relishes of sensual and intellectual perfections; and the more noble and excellent the soul is, the greater and more savory are its perceptions.

Each marriage in a divorcing society is a monogamous one so long as it lasts, but, since all marriages in such a society are permanent by accident rather than permanent in principle, what a divorcing society tends to produce is a kind of serialized polygamy and polyandry.