William Henry Channing

William Henry

American Writer, Unitarian Clergyman and Philosopher

Author Quotes

He is to be educated not because he's to make shoes, nails, and pins, but because he is a man.

It is far more important to me to preserve an unblemished conscience than to compass any object however great.

Of all treasons against humanity, there is no one worse than his who employs great intellectual force to keep down the intellect of his less favored brothers.

The home is the chief school of human virtues.

To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion: to be worthy, not respectable; and wealthy, not rich; to study hard, think quietly, talk gently, act frankly; to have an oratory in my own heart, and present spotless sacrifices of dignified kindness in the temple of humanity; to spread no opinions glaringly out like show-plants, and yet leave the garden gate ever open for the chosen friend and the chance acquaintance: to make no pretenses to greatness; to seek no notoriety; to attempt no wide influence; to have no ambitious projects; to let my writings be the daily bubbling spring flowing through constancy, swelled by experiences, into the full, deep river of wisdom; to listen to stars and buds, to babes and sages, with open heart; to bear all cheerfully, do all bravely, await occasions, hurry never? in a word, to let the spiritual, unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common. This is to be my symphony.

A man in earnest finds means, or if he cannot find, creates it.

He who is false to the present duty breaks a thread in the loom, and you will see the effect when the weaving of a life-time is unraveled.

It is mind which does the work of the world, so that the more there is of mind, the more work will be accomplished.

One good anecdote is worth a volume of biography.

The less of government the better, if society were kept in peace and prosperity.

To study hard, think quietly, talk gently, act frankly ... to listen to stars and buds, to babes and sages, with open heart; await occasions, hurry never ... this is my symphony.

A single hour a day, steadily given to the study of some interesting subject, brings unexpected accumulations of knowledge.

He who possesses the divine powers of the soul is a great being, be his place what it may. You may clothe him with rags, may immure him in a dungeon, may chain him to slavish tasks. But he is still great.

It is not the quantity but the quality of knowledge which determines the mind's dignity.

One of the tremendous evils of the world is the monstrous accumulation of power in a few hands.

The more a person analyzes his inner self, the more insignificant he seems to himself. This is the first lesson of wisdom. Let us be humble, and we will become wise. Let us know our weakness, and it will give us power.

True love is the parent of humility.

Be true to your own highest conviction.

Health is the working man's fortune, and he ought to watch over it more than the capitalist over his largest investments. Health lightens the efforts of body and mind. It enables a man to crowd much work into a narrow compass. Without it, little can be earned, and that little by slow, exhausting toil.

Let us teach that the honor of a nation consists not in the forced submission of other states, but in equal laws and free institutions, in cultivated fields and prosperous cities; in the development of intellectual and moral power, in the diffusion of knowledge, in magnanimity and justice, in the virtues and blessings of peace.

Our faith comes in moments; our vice is habitual.

The only distinctions which should be recognized are those of the soul, of strong principle, or incorruptible integrity, of usefulness, of cultivated intellect, of fidelity in seeking the truth.

Undoubtedly a man is to labor to better his condition, but first to better himself.

Beauty is an all-pervading presence. It unfolds to the numberless flowers of the Spring; it waves in the branches of the trees and in the green blades of grass; it haunts the depths of the earth and the sea, and gleams out in the hues of the shell and the precious stone. And not only these minute objects, but the ocean, the mountains, the clouds, the heavens, the stars, the rising and the setting sun all overflow with beauty. The universe is its temple; and those people who are alive to it cannot lift their eyes without feeling themselves encompassed with it on every side.

How easy to be amiable in the midst of happiness and success.

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William Henry
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American Writer, Unitarian Clergyman and Philosopher