The three hardest tasks in the world are neither physical feats nor intellectual achievements, but moral acts: to return love for hate, to include the excluded, and to say, "I was wrong."
Skepticism means, not intellectual doubt alone, but moral doubt.
If we want to know what happiness is we must seek it, not as if it were a part of gold at the end of the rainbow, but among human beings who are living richly and fully the good life. If you observe a really happy man you will find him building a boat, writing a symphony, educating his son, growing double Dahlias in his garden. He will not be searching for happiness as if it were a collar gold button that has rolled under the cupboard in his bed room. He will have become aware that he is happy in the course of living 24 crowded hours of the day. If you live only for yourself you are always an immediate danger of being bored to death with the repetition of your own views and interests. No one has learned the meaning of living until he has surrendered his ego to the service of his fellowmen. If your ambition has the momentum of an express train at full speed, if you can no longer stop your mad rush for glory, power, or intellectual supremacy, try to divert your energies into socially useful channels before it is too late.
For those who seek the larger happiness and greater effectiveness open to human beings there can be but one philosophy of life, a philosophy of constructive altruism. The truly happy man is always a fighting optimist. Optimism includes not only altruism but also social responsibility, social courage and objectivity. The good life demands a working philosophy as an orientating map of conduct. This is the golden way of life. This is the satisfying life. This is the way to be happy though human.
In love we never think of moral qualities, and scarcely of intellectual ones. Temperament and manner alone, with beauty, excite love.
A person who is a truth seeker and readily admits his mistakes will gain both the respect of others and will ultimately have more self-respect. Instead of looking at admitting mistakes as a sign of weakness, look at it as a manifestation of intellectual honesty.
If the intellectual has any function in society, it is to preserve a cool and unbiased judgment in the face of all solicitations to passion... During the war, the ordinary virtues, such as thrift, industry, and public spirit, were used to swell the magnitude of the disaster by producing a greater energy in the work of mutual extermination.
We are in the grip of a scientific materialism, caught in a vicious cycle where our security today seems to depend on regimentation and weapons which will ruin us tomorrow… the intellectual achievements of great scientists are being perverted by the material exploitation of industry and war…I have lived to experience the early results of scientific materialism… have watched pride of workmanship leave and human character decline as efficiency of production lines increased… I have seen the science I worshipped and the aircraft I loved destroying the civilization I expected them to save.
Nothing, in truth, has such a tendency to weaken not only the powers of invention, but the intellectual powers in general, as a habit of extensive and various reading without reflection. The activity and force of mind are gradually impaired in consequence of disuse; and, not infrequently, all our principles and opinions come to be lost in the infinite multiplicity and discordancy of our acquired ideas.
The word reason itself is far from being precise in its meaning. In common and popular discourse it denotes the power by which we distinguish truth from falsehood, and right from wrong, and by which we are enabled to combine means for the attainment of particular ends…. Reason is sometimes used to express the whole of those powers which elevate man above the brutes, and constitute his rational nature, more especially, perhaps, his intellectual powers; sometimes to express the power of deduction or argumentation.
It has become a conviction with me that psychology may in the long run do much to change the conception of the fundamental nature of the religious life, which, on the whole, is now too generally made a matter of doctrine. It is too intellectual At the doors of most churches one is met by required beliefs in a particular conception of God, in a speculative theory about the divinity of Christ, definite ideas concerning sin and salvation, the efficacy of ordinances, and the claims of supernatural revelation. What people are really seeking is access to refreshing fountains of life, sources of strength and guidance. They crave association with people and institutions which may convey to them a sense of what is most worthwhile in life and what may furnish impulsion toward real and enduring values. They know pretty well what those values are when allowed to let their own deepest desires express themselves.
It would seem that the amount of destructiveness to be found in individuals is proportionate to the amount to which expansiveness of life is curtailed. By this we do not refer to individual frustrations of this or that instinctive desire but to the thwarting of the whole of life, the blockage of spontaneity of the growth and expression of man's sensuous, emotional, and intellectual capacities.
No self is of itself alone. It has a long chain of intellectual ancestors. The "I" is chained to ancestry by many factors ... This is not mere allegory, but an eternal memory.
The indispensible judicial requisite is intellectual humility.
It will appear evident upon attentive consideration that equality of intellectual and physical advantages is the only sure foundation of liberty, and that such equality may best, and perhaps only, be obtained by a union of interests and cooperation in labor.
The central aim of Eastern mysticism is to experience all the phenomena in the world as manifestations of the same ultimate reality. This reality is seen as the essence of the universe, underlying and unifying the multitude of things and events we observe. The Hindus call it Brahman, The Buddhists Dharmakaya (The Body of Being) or Tathata (Suchness) and the Taoists Tao; each affirming that it transcends our intellectual concepts and defies further explanation. This ultimate essence, however, cannot be separated from its multiple manifestations. It is central to the very nature to manifest itself in myriad forms which come into being and disintegrate, transforming themselves into one another without end.
Disinterested intellectual curiosity is the life blood of real civilization.
Doublethink means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them. The Party intellectual knows in which direction his memories must be altered; he therefore knows that he is playing tricks with reality; but by the exercise of doublethink he also satisfies himself that reality is not violated.
What opinions the masses hold, or do not hold, is looked on as a matter of indifference. They can be granted intellectual liberty because they have no intellect. In a Party member, on the other hand, not even the smallest deviation of opinion on the most unimportant subject can be tolerated.
Faith is an excitement and an enthusiasm: it is a condition of intellectual magnificence to which we must cling as to a treasure and not squander [in]... priggish argument.
Faith is an excitement and an enthusiasm: it is a condition of intellectual magnificence to which we must cling as to a treasure, and not squander on our way through life in the small coin of empty words, or in exact and priggish argument.