Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Related Quotes

Ezra Taft Benson

Surely the preservation and enjoyment of the freedoms vouchsafed to us by the Constitution of the United States will require eternal vigilance even to the guarding of it with our lives… We must ever be on our guard against the unsound theories that would strike at our Constitutional freedoms. We must ever keep faith with our founding fathers by keeping faith with our Constitution. I trust that we all have faith in the Constitution of the United States, and that that faith is born of an assurance that this great document came into being through the inspiration of God to wise men, embodying as it does, eternal principles. This nation has a spiritual foundation which must be preserved at any cost of sweat and blood. May we recognize our debt and responsibility and be ever vigilant. The need for this eternal and constant vigilance is seen in some prophetic words of Daniel Webster, given in 1802: “Next to correct morals and watchful guardianship over the Constitution is the proper means for its support. No human advantage is indefensible. The fairest productions of man have in themselves or receive from accident a tendency to decay. Unless the Constitution be constantly fostered on the principles which created it, its excellency will fade; and it will feel, even in its infancy, the weakness and decrepitude of age. “Our form of government is superior to all others, inasmuch as it provides, in a fair and honorable manner for its own amendment. But it requires no gift or prophecy to foresee that this privilege may be seized on by demagogues, to introduce wild and destructive innovations. Under the gentle name of amendments, changes may be proposed which, if unresisted, will undermine the national compact, mar its fairest features, and reduce it finally to a dead letter. It abates nothing of the danger to say that alterations may be trifling and inconsiderable. If the Constitution be picked away by piecemeal, it is gone — and gone as effectually as if some military despot had grasped it at once, trampled it beneath his feet, and scattered its loose leaves in the wild winds.” If we are to keep faith with our Constitution, we must know it. Since it is the basis of our American way of life and our liberties every American should be familiar with it. We should read it periodically. How can people who are ignorant of the principles and guarantees of American government stand up in defense of it and our rights under the Constitution? The fundamentals and processes of free government should be known to every school boy — and his parents. No free people can ever survive if they are ignorant of and fail to understand the principles of free government!

Blessings | Darkness | Guidance | Lord | Power | Promise | Soul | Will | Guidance |

Ezra Taft Benson

We honor these partners [friends outside the Church] because their devotion to correct principles overshadowed their devotion to popularity, party, or personalities. We honor our founding fathers of this republic for the same reason. God raised up these patriotic partners to perform their mission, and he called them “wise men.” The First Presidency acknowledged that wisdom when they gave us the guideline a few years ago of supporting political candidates “who are truly dedicated to the Constitution in the tradition of our Founding Fathers.”. . . Our wise founders seemed to understand, better than most of us, our own scripture, which states that “it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority . . . they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion.” To help prevent this, the founders knew that our elected leaders should be bound by certain fixed principles. Said Thomas Jefferson: “In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.” These wise founders, our patriotic partners, seemed to appreciate more than most of us the blessings of the boundaries that the Lord set within the Constitution, for he said, “And as pertaining to law of man, whatsoever is more or less than this, cometh of evil.” In God the founders trusted, and in his Constitution — not in the arm of flesh. “O Lord,” said Nephi, “I have trusted in thee, and I will trust in thee forever. I will not put my trust in the arm of flesh; . . . cursed is he that putteth his trust in man or maketh flesh his arm.”

Better | Children | Eternal | Freedom | Pain | Time | Wisdom | Loss |

Ezra Pound, fully Ezra Weston Loomis Pound

As a bathtub lined with white porcelain, when the hot water gives out or goes tepid, so is the slow cooling of our chivalrous passion, o my much praised but-not-altogether-satisfactory lady.

Race | Trust | Will | Learn |

Ezra Taft Benson

Success in righteousness, the power to avoid deception and resist temptation, guidance in our daily lives, healing of the soul - these are but a few of the promises the Lord has given to those who will come to His word. Does the Lord promise and not fulfill? Surely if He tells us that these things will come to us if we lay hold upon His word, then the blessings can be ours. And if we do not, then the blessings may be lost. However diligent we may be in other areas, certain blessings are to be found only in the scriptures, only in coming to the word of the Lord and holding fast to it as we make our way through the mists of darkness to the tree of life.

Appreciation | Better | Blessings | Choice | Effort | Good | Hope | Little | Spirit | Will | Appreciation |

Ezra Taft Benson

Prayer in the hour of need is a great boon. From simple trials to our Gethsemanes, prayer can put us in touch with God, our greatest source of comfort and counsel.

Belief | Dignity | Eternal | Fear | Free speech | God | Government | Life | Life | Right | Rights | Speech | Work | World | Worship | Government | Trial | God |

Ezra Taft Benson

One day in the middle of an important examination in high school, the point of my lead pencil broke. In those days we used pocket knives to sharpen our pencils. I had forgotten my penknife and turned to ask a neighbor for his. The teacher saw this; he accused me of cheating. When I tried to explain, he gave me a tongue-lashing for lying; worse, he forbade me to play on the basketball team in the upcoming game. I could see that the more I protested the angrier he seemed to become. But again and again I stubbornly told what had happened. Even when the coach pleaded my cause, the teacher refused to budge. The disgrace was almost more than I could bear. Then, just minutes before the game, he had a change of heart and I was permitted to play. But there was no joy in it. We lost the game; and though that hurt, by far the deeper pain was being branded a cheat and a liar. Looking back. I know that lesson was God-sent. Character is shaped in just such crucibles. My parents believed me: they were understanding and encouraging. Supported by them and a clear conscience, I began to realize that when you are at peace with your Maker you can, if not ignore human criticism, at least rise above it. And I learned something else - the importance of avoiding even the appearance of evil. Though I was innocent, circumstance made me look guilty. Since this could so easily be true in many of life's situations, I made a resolution to keep even the appearance of my actions above question, as far as possible. And it struck me, too, that if this injustice happened to me, it could happen to others, and I must not judge their actions simply on appearances.

Evil | Freedom | God | Man | Men | Reason | Rebellion | Sacred | Soul | System | Tyranny | Will | God |

Ezra Taft Benson

We must not be cast down or discouraged in this work. There is no basis for discouragement. We are not alone. We will not, we cannot fail if we will do our duty. The Lord will magnify us even beyond our present talents and abilities.

Authority | Better | Blessings | Confidence | Devotion | God | Honor | Law | Little | Lord | Man | Nature | Principles | Tradition | Trust | Will | Wisdom | Wise | God |

Ezra Taft Benson

The War that began in heaven is not yet over. The conflict continues on the battlefield of mortality. And one of Lucifer’s primary strategies has been to restrict our agency through the power of earthly governments... We must appreciate that we live in one of history’s most exceptional moments — in a nation and a time of unprecedented freedom. Freedom as we know it has been experienced by perhaps less than one percent of the human family.

Existence | Nations | World |

Ezra Taft Benson

The antidote for pride is humility; meekness; submissiveness... Let us choose to be humble. We can choose to humble ourselves by conquering enmity toward our brothers and sisters, esteeming them as ourselves, and lifting them as high or higher than we are... We can choose to humble ourselves by receiving counsel and chastisement... We can choose to humble ourselves by forgiving those who have offended us... We can choose to humble ourselves by rendering selfless service... We can chose to humble ourselves by going on missions and preaching the word that can humble others... We can choose to humble ourselves by getting to the temple more frequently... We can choose to humble ourselves by confessing and forsaking our sins and being born of God... We can choose to humble ourselves by loving God, submitting our will to His, and putting Him first in our lives

Confidence | Danger | Government | Power | Wise | Government | Danger |

Felix Adler

The family is the school of duties... founded on love.

Achievement | Eternal | Life | Life | Power | Regard | Sorrow | Strength | Unity | Weakness | Understand |

Ezra Taft Benson

One good yardstick as to whether a person might be the right one for you is this: in her presence, do you think your noblest thoughts, do you aspire to your finest deeds, do you wish you were better than you are?

Appearance | Change | Character | Day | Disgrace | Heart | Important | Injustice | Injustice | Joy | Lesson | Pain | Parents | Peace | Play | Resolution | Understanding | Circumstance | Teacher |

Faith Popcorn, born Faith Plotkin

We do a lot of brainstorming with our talent base of 6,500 experts globally,

Day | People | Power | Trouble |

Felix Adler

The moral order never is, but is ever becoming. It grows with our growth.

Criticism | Desire | Doubt | Faith | Improvement | Individual | Life | Life | Nations | Regard | Sacred | Intellect |

Ezra Taft Benson

May we be wise — prayerfully wise — in the electing of those who would lead us. May we select only those who understand and will adhere to constitutional principles. To do so, we need to understand these principles ourselves… We should understand the Constitution as the founders meant that it should be understood. We can do this by reading their words about it, such as those contained in the Federalist Papers. Such understanding is essential if we are to preserve what God has given us.

Blessings | Need | Self-sufficiency | Wisdom |

Ezra Pound, fully Ezra Weston Loomis Pound

Image—that which presents an intellectual and emotional complex in an instant of time.

Error | System |

Feisal Abdul Rauf

Islamic law is clearly against terrorism, against any kind of deliberate killing of civilians or similar 'collateral damage.'

Battle | People |

Felix Adler

Theories of what is true have their day. They come and go, leave their deposit in the common stock of knowledge, and are supplanted by other more convincing theories. The thinkers and investigators of the world are pledged to no special theory, but feel themselves free to search for the greater truth beyond the utmost limits of present knowledge. So likewise in the field of moral truth, it is our hope, that men in proportion as they grow more enlightened, will learn to hold their theories and their creeds more loosely, and will none the less, nay, rather all the more be devoted to the supreme end of practical righteousness to which all theories and creeds must be kept subservient. There are two purposes then which we have in view: To secure in the moral and religious life perfect intellectual liberty, and at the same time to secure concert in action. There shall be no shackles upon the mind, no fetters imposed in early youth which the growing man or woman may feel prevented from shaking off, no barrier set up which daring thought may not transcend. And on the other hand there shall be unity of effort, the unity that comes of an end supremely prized and loved, the unity of earnest, morally aspiring persons, engaged in the conflict with moral evil.

Aid | Cause | Culture | Evolution | Experience | Faith | Force | Humanity | Life | Life | Mankind | Morality | Nature | Optimism | Past | Peace | Pessimism | Power | Will |

Felix Adler

We cannot adopt the way of living that was satisfactory a hundred years ago. The world in which we live has changed, and we must change with it.

Force | Hero | Obedience | Soul |

Gustave Flaubert

Julian's father and mother lived in a castle with a forest round it, on the slope of a hill.

Gustave Flaubert

Oh! You think that because I pass my life trying to make harmonious phrases, in avoiding assonances, that I too have not my little judgments on the things of this world? Alas! Yes! and moreover I shall burst, enraged at not expressing them.

Life | Life | Will | Wrong |