Great Throughts Treasury

This site is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Alan William Smolowe who gave birth to the creation of this database.

Related Quotes

Jean de La Bruyère

He who can wait for what he desires takes the course not to be exceedingly grieved if he fails of it; he, on the contrary, who labors after a thing too impatiently thinks the success when it comes is not a recompense equal to all the pains he has been at about it.

Character | Recompense | Success |

Hugh Blair

The fatal fondness of indulging in a spirit of ridicule, and the injurious and irreparable consequences which sometimes attend the too severe reply, can never be condemned with more asperity than it deserves. Not to offend is the first step towards pleasing. To give pain is as much an offence against humanity as against good-breeding, and surely it is as well to abstain from an action because it is sinful, as because it is unpolite.

Action | Character | Consequences | Good | Humanity | Pain | Ridicule | Spirit |

David A. Brandon

The highest level of compassion is without any purpose or intent. It seeks neither the good of others nor its own good. It lies in being good not ‘doing good.’ There is simply living without design or conscious reflection. It embodies the fostering of love.

Character | Compassion | Design | Good | Love | Purpose | Purpose | Reflection |

Buddha, Gautama Buddha, or The Buddha, also Gotama Buddha, Siddhārtha Gautama Buddha and Buddha Śākyamuni NULL

The wise man learns to meet the changing circumstances of life with an equitable spirit, being neither elated by success nor depressed by failure. Thus one realizes the truth of non-duality.

Character | Circumstances | Duality | Failure | Life | Life | Man | Spirit | Success | Truth | Wise |

James Boswell

There is no passion so distressing as fear, which gives us great pain and makes us appear contemptible in our own eyes to the last degree. Fear is in almost all cases a wretched instrument of government, and ought in particular never to be employed against any order of men who have the smallest pretensions to independency.

Character | Fear | Government | Men | Order | Pain | Passion |

Christian Nestell Bovee

Example has more followers than reason. We unconsciously imitate what pleases us, and approximate to the characters we most admire. A generous habit of thought and action carries with it an incalculable influence.

Action | Character | Example | Habit | Influence | Reason | Thought | Thought |

Jean de La Bruyère

We hope to grow old, and yet we fear old age; that is, we are willing to live, and afraid to die.

Age | Character | Fear | Hope | Old age | Afraid | Old |

Brahma-Vaivarta Purana NULL

Piety and selfless deeds elevate the inhabitants of this earth to exalted spiritual estates... self-serving acts reduce them to the realms beneath, of sorrow and pain, rebirths among birds and vermin, or out of the wombs of pigs and beasts of the wild, or among trees. Action is a function of character, which in turn is controlled by custom. This is the whole substance of the secret. This knowledge is the ferry across the ocean of hell to beatitude. For all the animate and inanimate objects in this world... are transitory, like dream. The gods on high, the mute trees and stones, are but apparitions in the fantasy. Good and evil attaching to a person are perishable as bubbles. In the cycles of time they alternate. The wise are attached to neither.

Action | Character | Custom | Deeds | Earth | Evil | Good | Hell | Knowledge | Pain | Piety | Self | Sorrow | Time | Wise | World | Deeds |

Thomas Brooks

When you have overcome one temptation, you must be ready to enter the lists with another. As distrust, in some sense, is the mother of safety, so security is the gate of danger. A man had need to fear this most of all, that he fears not at all.

Character | Danger | Distrust | Fear | Man | Mother | Need | Security | Sense | Temptation |

Léon Blum, fully André Léon Blum

Morality may consist solely in the courage of making a choice.

Character | Choice | Courage | Morality |

Jean de La Bruyère

We believe easily what we fear or what we desire.

Character | Desire | Fear |

Boethius, fully Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius NULL

As faintness is a disease of the body, so is vice a sickness of the mind. Wherefore, since we judge those that have corporal infirmities to be rather worthy of compassion than hatred, much more are they to be pitied, and not abhorred, whose minds are oppressed with wickedness, the greatest malady that may be.

Body | Character | Compassion | Disease | Mind | Wickedness | Vice |

Christian Nestell Bovee

Good men have the fewest fears. He has but one great fear who fears to do wrong; he has a thousand who has overcome it.

Character | Fear | Good | Men | Wrong |

Max Brod

The greatness of a nation does not depend on the character of its blood or race... [but] consists of the values it produces.

Character | Greatness | Race |

Jeremy Collier

What can be more honorable than to have courage enough to execute the commands of reason and conscience, to maintain the dignity of our nature, and the station assigned us?

Character | Conscience | Courage | Dignity | Enough | Nature | Reason |

Chagdud Tulku Rinpoche

True compassion is utterly neutral and is moved by suffering of every sort, not tied to right and wrong, attachment and aversion.

Character | Compassion | Right | Suffering | Wrong |

François Ignace Dunod De Charnage

Let us pity the wicked man; for it is very sad to seek happiness where it does not exist. Let our compassion express itself in efforts to bring him gently back to sacred principle, and if he persist, let us pity him the more for a blindness so fatal to himself.

Character | Compassion | Man | Pity | Sacred | Happiness |

William Pitt, Lord Chatham or Lord William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham, aka The Elder Pitt and The Great Commander

Moderation, which consists in an indifference about little things, and in a prudent and well-proportioned zeal about things of importance, can proceed from nothing but true knowledge, which has its foundation in self-acquaintance.

Acquaintance | Character | Indifference | Knowledge | Little | Moderation | Nothing | Self | Zeal |

Howard Cosell, fully Howard William Cosell, born Howard William Cohen

Courage takes many forms. there is physical courage, there is moral courage. Then there is a still higher type of courage - the courage to brave pain, to live with it, to never let others know of it and to still find joy in life; to wake up in the morning with an enthusiasm for the day ahead.

Character | Courage | Day | Enthusiasm | Joy | Life | Life | Pain |