Random Quotes

D. Z. Phillips and H. O. Mounce

Disagreement in morals, as in everything else, can occur only among people who, sharing a way of life, hold certain things in common which they do not consider to be in dispute.

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

Old fat spider spinning in a tree! Old fat spider can?t see me! Attercop! Attercop! Won't you stop, stop your spinning and look for me! Old Tomnoddy, all big body, old Tomnoddy can?t spy me! Attercop! Attercop! Down you drop! You'll never catch me up your tree! Lazy Lob and crazy Cob are weaving webs to wind me. I am far more sweet than other meat, but still they cannot find me! Here am I, naughty little fly; you are fat and lazy. You cannot trap me, though you try, in your cobwebs crazy.

Richard Neustadt, fully Richard Elliott Neustadt

Effective influence for the man in the White House stems from three related sources: first are the bargaining advantages inherent in his job with which to persuade other men that what he wants of them is what their own responsibilities require them to do. Second are the expectations of those other men regarding his ability and will to use the various advantages they think he has. Third are those men's estimates of how his public views him and of how their publics may view them if they do what he wants. In short, his power is the product of his vantage points in government, together with his reputation in the Washington community and his prestige outside.

Ben Goertzel

One conjecture I have, then, is that ?Be friendly to humans? will prove an unstable Prime Directive for goal-modifying-only AI?s. My guess is that goal-modifying-only AI?s will tend to drift away from this goal over time, as they self-modify. By and large, I think, they?ll drift in the direction of selfishness.

Groucho Marx, Pseudonym for Julius Henry Marx

Why, I’d horse-whip you if I had a horse.

Maimonides, given name Moses ben Maimon or Moshe ben Maimon, known as "Rambam"

The purpose and intent [of a true leader] shall be to elevate mankind’s faith and fill the world with justice.

Herman Hesse

We passed for jolly, unruly, even dangerous rioters, which was untrue of me, and we enjoyed a doubtful but heroic reputation.

Somali Proverbs

Teeth bite something only when they bite together.

Vincent van Gogh, fully Vincent Willem van Gogh

Oh, Theo, why should I change — I used to be very passive and very gentle and quiet — I'm that no longer, but then I'm no longer a child either now — sometimes I feel my own man.

Sri Aurobindo, born Aurobindo Ghose or Ghose

Man has in him two distinct master impulses, the individualistic and the communal, a personal life and a social life, a personal motive of conduct and a social motive of conduct. The possibility of their opposition and the attempt to find their equation lie at the very roots of human civilization and persist in other figures when he has passed beyond the vital animal into a highly individualized mental and spiritual progress.

Sarada Devi, fully Sri Sarada Devi, born Saradamani Mukhopadhyaya

One should not hurt others even by words. One must not speak an unpleasant truth unnecessarily.

Chinese Proverbs

Suit the self to circumstances.

William Shakespeare

HORATIO. I saw him once: he was a goodly king. HAMLET. He was a man, take him for all in all, I shall not look upon his like again. Hamlet, Act i, Scene2

Jostein Gaarder

I did not feel lonely until there was something to yearn for. And longing are On Loneliness two sides of the SAME coin.

Robert Byrd, fully Robert Carlyle Byrd

I apologize for any wrongdoing I or my players did. I thought I was defending my players, but I'm sure that's what Coach Fred Hickman was trying to do too. I'm sorry about all of that.

Michael Murphy

Perhaps a new kind of inspired physicist, experienced in the yogic modes of perception, might arise to comprehend the further reaches of matter, space and time. A physicist (if he were still called that) trained in yogic perception would compare his discoveries with those derived from today's "normal" physics, and there would probably be a "principle of complementarity" existing between the insights derived from the various consciousness states, "normal" and "yogic". Physics would be entirely empirical (in this broadened sense), its findings with instruments ranging from the ordinary senses and their physical extensions (telescopes, radar, etc.) to the subtle yogic ways (indriyas) of apprehending the universe.

George T. Lucas, fully George Walton Lucas, Jr.

I wanted to make a kids' film that would strengthen contemporary mythology.

William Shakespeare

Sound all the lofty instruments of war, and by that music let us all embrace, for, heaven to earth, some of us never shall a second time do such a courtesy.

Robert Louis Stevenson, fully Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson

Ah, there, said Morgan, that comed of sp'iling Bibles. That comes--as you call it--of being arrant asses, retorted the doctor.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

The book is the only medium left that hasn?t been corrupted by the profane.

John Adams

I would define liberty to be a power to do as we would be done by. The definition of liberty to be the power of doing whatever the law permits, meaning the civil laws, does not seem satisfactory.

Chinese Proverbs

In the halls of magistrates long bodied men sit; through the streets in a hurry long legged men flit.

Charles de Gaulle, fully Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle

The task of the leader is always to weigh up the circumstances, to make decisions and to give orders and then, once the action has been launched, to reassess from time to time the system of the means at his disposal, which [is] continually being modified by circumstances.

Robert Ingersoll, fully Robert Green "Bob" Ingersoll

To violate your conscience ? that is blasphemy.

David Foster Wallace

Having a lot of money does not immunize people from suffering or fear.