individuality

No man should part with his own individuality and become that of another.

The essential problem of freedom, it seems to me, is the problem of the relation of choice and unimpeded effective action to each other... There is an intrinsic connection between choice as freedom and power of action as freedom. A choice which intelligently manifests individuality enlarges the range of action, and this enlargement in turn confers upon our desires greater insight and foresight, and makes choice more intelligent.

So much of learning to be an American is learning not to let your individuality become a nuisance.

God gave every man individuality of constitution, and a chance for achieving individuality of character. He puts special instruments into every man’s hands by which to make himself and achieve his mission.

Personality is the supreme realization of the innate individuality of a particular living being. Personality is an act of the greatest courage in the face of life, the absolute affirmation of all that constitutes the individual, and the most successful adaptation to the universal conditions of existence coupled with the greatest possible freedom of personal decision.

No man can force the harp of his own individuality into the people’s heart; but every man may play upon the chords of the people’s heart, who draws his inspiration from the people’s instinct.

The four cornerstones of character on which the structure of this nation was built are: Initiative, Imagination, Individuality and Independence.

True education makes for inequality; the inequality of individuality the inequality of success; the glorious inequality of talent, of genius, for inequality, not mediocrity, individual superiority, not standardization, is the measure of the progress of the world.

To have one’s individuality completely ignored is being pushed quite out of life. Like being blown out as one blows out a candle.

All Fords are exactly alike, but no two men are just alike. Every new life is a new thing under the sun; there has never been anything just like it before, never will be again. A young man ought to get that idea about himself; he should look for the single spark of individuality that makes him different from other folks, and develop that for all he is worth. Society and schools may try to iron it out of him; their tendency is to put it all in the same mold, but I say don't let that spark be lost; it is your only real claim to importance.

There is a continuum of cosmic consciousness, against which our individuality builds but accidental fences, and into which our several minds plunge as into a mother-sea or reservoir... fitful influences from beyond leak in, showing otherwise unverifiable common connection.

Nationality is the aggregated individuality of the greatest men of the nation.

Medicine is not only a science, but also the art of letting our own individuality interact with the individuality of the patient.

Religion, like poetry, is not a mere idea, it is expression. The self-expression of God is in the endless variety of creation; and our attitude toward the Infinite Being must also in its expression have a variety of individuality ceaseless and unending. Those sects which jealously build their boundaries with too rigid creeds excluding all spontaneous movement of the living spirit may hoard their theology but they kill religion.

We spend a good part of our time establishing personal boundaries, creating individuality by drawing lines that define the limits of the self. But it becomes increasingly clear that these limits are artificial. We are part of the fabric and cannot avoid being so. Mere anarchy is seldom loosed upon the real world.

A necessary quality for the attainment of individuality is the ability to tolerate some degree of loneliness in the sense of independent adherence to values that those around you will not support.

Because God is One, all our lives have various and unique places in the harmony of the divine life. And because God attains and wins and finds this uniqueness, all our lives win in our union with him the individuality which is essential to their true meaning.

A sense of “belonging,” a sense of meaningful association with others, has never required that one sacrifice his individuality as part of the bargain. Why, then, do so many rush to embrace a philosophy which tells them it is necessary.

Once upon a time, I, Chuang Tzu, dreamt I was a butterfly, fluttering hither and thither, to all intents and purposes a butterfly. I was conscious only of following my fancies as a butterfly, and was unconscious of my individuality as a man. Suddenly, I awoke, and there I lay, myself again. Now I do not know whether I was then a man dreaming I was a butterfly, or whether I am now a butterfly dreaming I am a man.

Only life can satisfy the demands of life... Don’t be afraid of yourself, live your individuality to the full - but for the good of others. Don’t copy others in order to buy fellowship, or make convention your law instead of living the righteousness.