Obligation

Relationships based on obligation lack dignity.

Our major obligation is not to mistake slogans for solutions.

Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one.

Our obligation is to give meaning to life and in doing so to overcome the passive, indifferent life.

A teacher, like a playwright, has an obligation to be interesting or, at least, brief. A play closes when it ceases to interest audiences.

I ask no one who may read this book to accept my views. I ask him to think for himself. Whoever, laying aside prejudice and self-interest, will honestly and carefully make up his own mind as to the causes and the cure of the social evils that are so apparent, does, in that, the most important thing in his power toward their removal. This primary obligation devolves upon us individually, as citizens and as men. Whatever else we may be able to do, this must come first. For "if the blind lead the blind, they both shall fall into the ditch." Social reform is not to be secured by noise and shouting; by complaints and denunciation; by the formation of parties, or the making of revolutions; but by the awakening of thought and the progress of ideas. Until there be correct thought, there cannot be right action; and when there is correct thought, right action will follow. Power is always in the hands of the masses of men. What oppresses the masses is their own ignorance, their own short-sighted selfishness.

Together we have come to realize that for most men the right to learn is curtailed by the obligation to attend school.

Jean-Paul Sartre has said, “Man is condemned to be free.” God has given him “choice” – the greatest obligation of freedom.

For of those to whom much is given, much is required. And when at some future date the high court of history sits in judgment on each of us—recording whether in our brief span of service we fulfilled our responsibilities to the state—our success or failure, in whatever office we hold, will be measured by the answers to four questions: First, were we truly men of courage—with the courage to stand up to one’s enemies—and the courage to stand up, when necessary, to one’s associates—the courage to resist public pressure, as well as private greed? Secondly, were we truly men of judgment—with perceptive judgment of the future as well as the past—of our mistakes as well as the mistakes of others—with enough wisdom to know what we did not know and enough candor to admit it? Third, were we truly men of integrity—men who never ran out on either the principles in which we believed or the men who believed in us—men whom neither financial gain nor political ambition could ever divert from the fulfillment of our sacred trust? Finally, were we truly men of dedication—with an honor mortgaged to no single individual or group, and comprised of no private obligation or aim, but devoted solely to serving the public good and the national interest? Courage—judgment—integrity—dedication—these are the historic qualities,with God’s help, characterize our Government’s conduct in the 4 stormy years that lie ahead.

If there is to be peace in our industrial life let the employer recognize his obligation to his employees - at least to the degree set forth in existing statutes.

Non-cooperation began for me by refusing to be part of the factory farm system. This motivated me to create an alternative system. What came first though was the moral obligation to non-cooperate with a system I saw as evil.

All of those for whom authentic transformation has deeply unseated their souls must, I believe, wrestle with the profound moral obligation to shout form the heart—perhaps quietly and gently, with tears of reluctance; perhaps with fierce fire and angry wisdom; perhaps with slow and careful analysis; perhaps by unshakable public example—but authentically always and absolutely carries a a demand and duty: you must speak out, to the best of your ability, and shake the spiritual tree, and shine your headlights into the eyes of the complacent. You must let that radical realization rumble through your veins and rattle those around you. Alas, if you fail to do so, you are betraying your own authenticity. You are hiding your true estate. You don’t want to upset others because you don’t want to upset your self. You are acting in bad faith, the taste of a bad infinity.

To place yourself under an obligation is to sell your liberty.

Surely the love of our country is a lesson of reason, not an institution of nature. Education and habit, obligation and interest, attach us to it, not instinct. It is, however, so necessary to be cultivated, and the prosperity of all societies, as well as the grandeur of some, depends upon it so much, that orators by their eloquence, and poets by their enthusiasm, have endeavoured to work up this precept of morality into a principle of passion. But the examples which we find in history, improved by the lively descriptions and the just applauses or censures of historians, will have a much better and more permanent effect than declamation, or song, or the dry ethics of mere philosophy.

Life's under no obligation to give us what we expect.

The writer’s job is to write with rigor, with commitment, to defend what they believe with all the talent they have. I think that’s part of the moral obligation of a writer, which cannot be only purely artistic. I think a writer has some kind of responsibility at least to participate in the civic debate. I think literature is impoverished, if it becomes cut from the main agenda of people, of society, of life.

Things to remember: 1) The worth of character; 2) The improvement of talent;
3) The influence of example; 4) The joy of origination; 5) The dignity of simplicity; 6) The success of perseverance... More things to remember: 7) The value of time; 8) The pleasure of working; 9) The obligation of duty; 10) The power of kindness; 11) The wisdom of economy; 12) The virtue of patience.

I suspect that most of the individuals who have religious faith are content with blind faith. They feel no obligation to understand what they believe. They may even wish not to have their beliefs disturbed by thought. But if God in whom they believe created them with intellectual and rational powers, that imposes upon them the duty to try to understand the creed of their religion. Not to do so is to verge on superstition.

My religion recognizes no obligation to resolve doubt other than through rational means; and it commands no mere faith in eternal truths.