Rhetoric

Gratitude is the virtue most deified and most deserted. It is the ornament of rhetoric and the libel of practical life.

The language of the heart which comes from the heart and goes to the heart - is always simple, graceful, and full of power, but no art of rhetoric can teach it. It is at once the easiest and most difficult language, difficult, since it needs a heart to speak it; easy, because its periods though rounded and full of harmony, are still unstudied.

The dreary thing about most new causes is that they are praised in such very old terms. Every new religion bores us with the same stale rhetoric about closer fellowship and the higher life.

The life of a pious minister is visible rhetoric.

As a social and as a personal force, religion has become a dependent variable. It does not originate; it reacts. It does not denounce; it adapts. It does not set forth new models of conduct and sensibility; it imitates. Its rhetoric is without deep appeal; the worship it organizes is without piety. It has become less a revitalization of the spirit in permanent tension with the world than a respectable distraction from the sourness of life.

The voice of humility is God’s music and the silence of humility is God’s rhetoric.

The exploitation of the weak by the powerful, organized for the purposes of economic gain, buttressed by imposing systems of law, and screened by decorous draperies of virtuous sentiment and resounding rhetoric, has been a permanent feature in the life of most communities that the world has yet seen.

Where love, trust, mutual aid, equality, and empathy are not linked, the boot, whip, warring, modern inquisitors, and their epigones will supply a rhetoric that accepts humanity's fate as tragic while doing everything to perpetuate that tragedy.

Truth is most beautiful undraped; and in the impression it makes is deep in proportion as its expression has been simple. This is so partly because it then takes unobstructed possession of the hearer’s whole soul, and leaves him no by-thought to distract him; partly, also, because he feels that here he is not being corrupted or cheated by the arts of rhetoric, but that all the effect of what is said comes from the thing itself.

Reading maketh a full man; conference a ready man; histories make men wise; poets, witty; the mathematics, subtle; natural philosophy, deep; moral philosophy, grace; logic and rhetoric, able to contend.

I consider theology to be the rhetoric of morals.

The ICC [Interstate Commerce Commission] illustrates what might be called the natural history of government intervention. A real or fancied evil leads to demands to do something about it. A political coalition forms consisting of sincere, high-minded reformers and equally sincere interested parties. The incompatible objectives of the members of the coalition (e.g., low prices to consumers and high prices to producers) are glossed over by fine rhetoric about “the public interest,” “fair competition,” and the like. The coalition succeeds in getting Congress (or a state legislature) to pass a law. The preamble to the law pays lip service to the rhetoric and the body of the law grants power to government officials to “do something.” The high-minded reformers experience a glow of triumph and turn their attention to new causes. The interested parties go to work to make sure that the power is used for their benefit. They generally succeed. Success breeds its problems, which are met by broadening the scope of intervention. Bureaucracy takes its toll so that even the initial special interests no longer benefit. In the end the effects are precisely the opposite of the objectives of the reformers and generally do not even achieve the objectives of the special interests. Yet the activity is so firmly established and so many vested interests are connected with it that repeal of the initial legislation is nearly inconceivable. Instead, new government legislation is called for to cope with the problems produced by the earlier legislation and a new cycle begins.

A grain of real knowledge, of genuine controllable conviction, will outweigh a bushel of adroitness and to produce persuasion there is one golden principle of rhetoric not put down in the booksto understand what you are talking about

That the poor are invisible is one of the most important things about them. They are not simply neglected and forgotten as in the old rhetoric of reform; what is much worse, they are not seen.

Many of us dismiss talk that does not convey important information as worthless - meaningless small talk if it's a social setting or empty rhetoric if it's public. Such admonitions as Skip the small talk, Get to the point, or Why don't you say what you mean? may seem to be reasonable. But they are reasonable only if information is all that counts. This attitude toward talk ignores the fact that people are emotionally involved with each other and that talking is the major way be establish, maintain, monitor and adjust our relationships.

Enter into the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed again to enter the Church, be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent.

As we discern a fine line between crank and genius, so also (and unfortunately) we must acknowledge an equally graded trajectory from crank to demagogue. When people learn no tools of judgment and merely follow their hopes, the seeds of political manipulation are sown.

The equation of evolution with progress represents our strongest cultural impediment to a proper understanding of this greatest biological revolution in the history of human thought.

I must tell you that we artists cannot tread the path of Beauty without Eros keeping company with us and appointing himself as our guide.

An intense, unyielding stubbornness hides beneath an apparent obedience (the patient brings a vast number of dreams; his associations become endless; he produces an inexhaustible number of recollections, which seem to him very important but are actually of little moment; or he goes off upon some byroad suggested by the analyst and leads the latter into a blind alley). The child manifests the same reactions of defiance and obedience. The child, too, can hide his stubbornness behind an excessive docility (the parent's command: You must be industrious. Industry may become a mania so that the child neither goes out nor has time to sleep). Obedience is the giving up of the resistance; obstinacy the setting up of fresh resistances. This resistance is externally active. We have in recent years had sufficient opportunity to observe the law of resistance (the passive resistance). Activity and defiance show great differences. Defiance is the reaction against activity (aggression) of the environment. It may then manifest itself actively or passively and stands in the service of the defensive tendency of the ego.Every resistance reveals the ego (one's own) in conflict with another.