Men fear thought as they fear nothing else on earth -- more than ruin -- more even than death.... Thought is subversive and revolutionary, destructive and terrible, thought is merciless to privilege, established institutions, and comfortable habit.
The aged oak upon the steep stands more firm and secure if assailed by angry winds; for if the winter bares its head, the more strongly it strikes its roots into the ground, acquiring strength as it loses beauty.
Of all faults the greatest is the excess of impious terror, dishonoring divine grace. He who despairs wants love, wants faith; for faith, hope, and love are three torches which blend their light together, nor does the one shine without the other.
O, how full of error is the judgment of mankind. They wonder at results when they are ignorant of the reasons. They call it fortune when they know not the cause, and thus worship their own ignorance changed into a deity.
Let him speak of his own deeds, and not of those of his forefathers. High birth is mere accident, and not virtue; for if reason had controlled birth, and given empire only to the worthy, perhaps Arbaces would have been Xerxes, and Xerxes Arbaces.
If you wish to behold God, you may see Him in every object around; search in your breast, and you will find Him there. And if you do not yet perceive where He dwells, confute me, if you can, and say where He is not.
If our inward griefs were written on our brows, how many who are envied now would be pitied. It would seem that they had their deadliest foe in their own breast, and their whole happiness would be reduced to mere seeming.
He who devises evil for another falls at last into his own pit, and the most cunning finds himself caught by what he had prepared for another. But virtue without guile, erect like the lofty palm, rises with greater vigour when it is oppressed.