Man seeks to acquire a rank among his fellow men, whom he detests, but without whom he cannot live.
Poetry (which owes its origin almost entirely to genius and is least willing to be led by precepts or example) holds the first rank among all the arts. It expands the mind by giving freedom to the boundless multiplicity of possible forms accordant with the given concept, to whose bounds it is restricted, that one which couples with the presentation of the concept a wealth of thought to which no verbal expression is completely adequate, and by thus rises aesthetically to ideas.
When a man is in the plains, he sees the lowly grass and the mighty pine tree and says how big is the tree and how small is the grass? But when he ascends the mountain and looks from its high peak to the plain below, the mighty pine tree and the lowly grass blend into one indistinct mass of green. So in the sight of the worldly man there are differences of rank and position, but when the divine sight is opened, there remains no distinction of high and low.
Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat.
Those who enjoy their own emotionally bad health and who habitually fill their own minds with the rank poisons of suspicion, jealousy and hatred, as a rule take umbrage at those who refuse to do likewise, and they find a perverted relief in trying to denigrate them.
In the democracy of the dead all men at last are equal. There is neither rank nor station nor prerogative in the republic of the grave.
[Comedies], in the ancient world, were regarded as of a higher rank than tragedy, of a deeper truth, of a more difficult realization, of a sounder structure, and of a revelation more complete. The happy ending of the fairy tale, the myth, and the divine comedy of the soul, is to be read, not as a contradiction, but as a transcendence of the universal tragedy of man…. Tragedy is the shattering of the forms and of our attachments to the forms; comedy, the wild and careless, inexhaustible joy of life invincible.
Religious rights, and religious liberty, are things of inestimable value. For these have many of our ancestors suffered and died; and shall we, in the sunshine of prosperity, desert that glorious cause, from which no storms of adversity or persecution could make them swerve? Let us consider if as a duty of the first rank with respect to moral obligation, to transmit to our posterity, and provide, as far as we can, for transmitting, unimpaired, to the latest generations, that generous zeal for religion and liberty, which makes the memory of our forefathers so truly illustrious.
There is an ill-breeding to which, whatever our rank and nature, we are almost equally sensitive, the ill-breeding that comes from want of consideration for others.
When soldiers have been baptized in the fire of a battle-field, they have all one rank in my eyes.
For any man to match above his rank is but to sell his liberty.
It is India that gave us the ingenious method of expressing all numbers by means of ten symbols, each symbol receiving a value of position as well as an absolute value a profound and important idea which appears so simple to us now that we ignore its true merit. But its very simplicity and the great ease which it has lent to computations put our arithmetic in the first rank of useful inventions and we shall appreciate the grandeur of the achievement the more when we remember that it escaped the genius of Archimedes and Apollonius, two of the greatest men produced by antiquity.
Perhaps, the good and the beautiful are the same, and must be investigated by one and the same process; and in like manner the base and the evil. And in the first rank we must place the beautiful, and consider it as the same with the good; from which immediately emanates intellect as beautiful. Next to this, we must consider the soul receiving its beauty from intellect, and every inferior beauty deriving its origin from the forming power of the soul, whether conversant in fair actions and offices, or sciences and arts. Lastly, bodies themselves participate of beauty from the soul, which, as something divine, and a portion of the beautiful itself, renders whatever it supervenes and subdues, beautiful as far as its natural capacity will admit.
Surely we must regard as ‘greatest, divinest,’ those human suns who send out their waves of light and impulse through the longest and widest stretches of time and space, vitalizing most germs; kindling and vivifying most hearts and brains? If the poet type is still to be accepted as the highest type (as I think it will) the boundaries must be enlarged to include Christ who never wrote a line: it must be entirely a question of the thing uttered and not at all of the ‘the mode of utterance;’ and many names that have stood very high on the roll must go down to the rank of ‘sweet singers’ only.
He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would fully suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away with at once. Heroism at command, senseless brutality, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism, how violently I hate all this, how despicable and ignoble war is; I would rather be torn to shreds than be part of so base an action! It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder.
For, like almost everyone else in our country, I started out with my share of optimism. I believed in hard work and progress and action, but now, after first being 'for' society and then 'against' it, I assign myself no rank or any limit, and such an attitude is very much against the trend of the times. But my world has become one of infinite possibilities. What a phrase - still it's a good phrase and a good view of life, and a man shouldn't accept any other; that much I've learned underground. Until some gang succeeds in putting the world in a strait jacket, its definition is possibility.
The feeling of awed wonder that science can give us is one of the highest experiences of which the human psyche is capable. It is a deep aesthetic passion to rank with the finest that music and poetry can deliver. It is truly one of the things that make life worth living and it does so, if anything, more effectively if it convinces us that the time we have for living is quite finite.
God's children are neither madmen nor fools; it is but a scandal cast upon them by the madmen of the world. They are the only wise men if it be well considered. First, they make the highest end their aim, which is to be children of God here, and saints hereafter in heaven. Secondly, they aim to be found wise men at their death, and therefore are always making their accounts ready. Thirdly, they labor to live answerable to the rule; they observe the rule of the Word to be governed continually by it. Fourthly, they improve all advantages to advance their grand end; they labor to grow better by blessings and crosses, and to make a sanctified use of all things. Fifthly, they swim against the stream of the times and though they eat and drink and sleep as other men, yet (like the stars) they have a secret settled course of their own which the world cannot discern; therefore a man must be changed and set in a higher rank before he can have a sanctified judgment of the ways of God.
An authority should protect those whom he wants to silence.
Even if the weight of carrying people’s hopes and pains may fall mainly, for a time, on one person’s shoulders, leadership cannot be exercised alone. The lone-warrior model of leadership is heroic suicide. Each of us had blind spots that require the vision of others. Each of us has passions that need to be contained by others.