The source of all virtue is wisdom, reason, knowledge.
One should seek virtue for its own sake and not from hope or fear, or any external motive. It is in virtue that happiness consists, for virtue is the state of mind which tends to make the whole of life harmonious.
That the individual man should seek to know himself for what he really is and should esteem himself for his true worth make inevitable his desire to be known and esteemed by others according to his merits... God alone is the judge of one’s ultimate worth, and virtue is its own reward.
The general conclusion is that all the objects of science, including minds and goods, are things occurring in space and time... and that we can study them in virtue of the fact that we come into spatial and temporal relations with them. And therefore all ideals, ultimates, symbols, agencies and the like are to be rejected, and no such distinction as that of facts and principles, or facts and values, can be maintained. There are only facts, i.e., occurrences in space and time.
The purpose of human law is to lead men to virtue not suddenly, but gradually.
He only can attain to virtue who knows and imitates God - which knowledge and imitation are the only cause of blessedness... for philosophy is directed to the obtaining of the blessed life, and he who loves God is blessed in the enjoyment of God.
Beauty is but the sensible image of the Infinite. Like truth and justice it lives within us; like virtue and the moral law it is a companion of the soul.
Happiness and virtue rest upon each other; the best are not only the happiest, but the happiest are usually the best.
What is past is past. There is a future left to all men who have the virtue to repent, and the energy to atone.
Misery assails riches, as lightning does the highest towers; or as a tree that is heavy laden with fruits breaks its own boughs, so do riches destroy the virtue of their possessor.
There do remain dispersed in the soil of human nature divers seeds of goodness, of benignity, of ingenuity, which being cherished, excited, and quickened by good culture, do by common experience thrust out flowers very lovely, and yield fruits very pleasant of virtue and goodness.
I would rather be the author of one original thought than conqueror of a hundred battles. Yet moral excellence is so much superior to intellectual, that I ought to esteem one virtue more valuable than a hundred original thoughts.
Pride, like ambition, is sometimes virtuous and sometimes vicious, according the character in which it is found, and the object to which it is directed. As a principle, it is the parent of almost every virtue and every vice - everything that pleases and displeases in mankind; and as the effects are so very different, nothing is more easy than to discover, even to ourselves, whether the pride that produces them is virtuous or vicious the first object of virtuous pride is rectitude, and the next independence.
There is but one virtue - the eternal sacrifice of self.
Beware of the virtue which a man boasts is his.
Socrates taught that true felicity is not to be derived from external possessions, but from wisdom, which consists in the knowledge and practice of virtue; that the cultivation of virtuous manners is necessarily attended with pleasure as well as profit; that the honest man alone is happy; and that it is absurd to attempt to separate things which are in nature so closely united as virtue and interest.
A soul which is conversant with virtue is like an ever flowing source, for it is pure and tranquil and potable and sweet and communicative (social) and rich and harmless and free from mischief.
Be free from grief not through insensibility like the irrational animals, nor through want of thought like the foolish, but like a man of virtue by having reason as the consolation of grief.
If virtue promises happiness, prosperity and peace, then progress in virtue is progress in each of these; for to whatever point the perfection of anything brings us, progress is always an approach toward it.
“Knowledge, without common sense," says Lee, "is folly; without method, it is waste; without kindness, is it death." But with common sense, it is wisdom; with method, it is power; with charity, it is beneficence; with religion, it is virtue and life and peace.