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

Fred de Armond

A man who truly wants to make the world better should start by improving himself and his attitudes.

Better | Character | Man | Wants | World |

Bahya ben Asher ibn Halawa, also known as Rabbeinu Behaye

It is integrity that invests man with immortality, and bestows upon him the privilege of direct communion with God.

Character | God | Immortality | Integrity | Man | Privilege |

Simeon ben Azai, sometimes Ben Azai

Despise not any man, and do not spurn anything; for there is no man that has not his hour, nor is there anything that has not its place.

Character | Despise | Man |

Arthur Aughey

A cheerful spirit is one of the most valuable gifts ever bestowed upon humanity by a kind Creator. It is the sweetest and the most fragrant flower of the Spirit, that constantly sends out its beauty and fragrance, and blesses everything within its reach. It will sustain the soul in the darkest and most dreary places of this world. It will hold in check the demons of despair, and stifle the power of discouragement and hopelessness. It is the brightest star that ever cast its radiance over the darkened soul, and one that seldom sets in the gloom of morbid fancies and foreboding imaginations.

Beauty | Character | Despair | Gloom | Humanity | Power | Soul | Spirit | Will | World | Beauty |

Honoré de Balzac

[Paraphrase] Self consciousness, while glorious for what is has done, is at the same time baneful, because it precludes man from entering the Cosmic Conscious life, which leads to the infinite - which alone can explain God.

Character | Consciousness | God | Life | Life | Man | Self | Time |

Honoré de Balzac

Gentleness in the gait is what simplicity is in the dress. Violent gesture or quick movement inspires involuntary disrespect. One looks for a moment at a cascade; but one sits for hours, lost in thought, and gazing upon the still water of a lake. A deliberate gait, gentle manners, and a gracious tone of voice - all of which may be acquired - give a mediocre man an immense advantage over those vastly superior to him. To be bodily tranquil, to speak little, and to digest without effort are absolutely necessary to grandeur of mind or of presence, or to proper development of genius.

Character | Disrespect | Effort | Genius | Gentleness | Little | Looks | Man | Manners | Mind | Simplicity | Thought |

Ahad HaAm, pen name, born Asher Zvi Hirsch Ginsberg

Wise men weigh the advantages of any course of action against its drawbacks, and move not an inch until they can see what the result of their action will be; but while they are deep in thought, the men with self-confidence ‘come and see and conquer.’

Action | Character | Confidence | Men | Self | Self-confidence | Thought | Will | Wise |

Marcus Aurelius, Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus

A man does not sin by commission only, but often by omission.

Character | Man | Sin |

Marcus Aurelius, Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus

I have often wondered how it is that every man loves himself more than all the rest of men, but yet sets less value on his own opinion of himself than on the opinion of others.

Character | Man | Men | Opinion | Rest | Value |

Henri Bergson, aka Henri-Louis Bergson

It is when we detect our own weaknesses that we come to pity or despise mankind. The human nature from which we then turn away is the human nature we have discovered in the depths of our own being. The evil is so well screened, the secret so universally kept, that in this case each individual is the dupe of all: however severely we may profess to judge other men, at bottom we think them better than ourselves. On this happy illusion much of our social life is grounded.

Better | Character | Despise | Evil | Happy | Human nature | Illusion | Individual | Life | Life | Mankind | Men | Nature | Pity | Think |

Aśvaghoṣa NULL

The purpose of this discipline is to bring man into the habit of applying the insight that has come to him as the result of the preceding disciplines. When one is rising, standing, walking, doing something, stopping, one should constantly concentrate one’s mind on the act and the doing of it, not on one’s relation to the act, or its character or value. One should think: there is walking, there is stopping, there is realizing; not, I am walking, I am doing this, it is a good thing, it is disagreeable, I am gaining merit, it is I who am realizing how wonderful it is. Thence come vagrant thoughts, feelings of elation or of failure and unhappiness. Instead of all this, one should simply practice concentration of the mind on the act itself, understanding it to be an expedient means for attaining tranquillity of mind, realization, insight and Wisdom; and one should follow the practice in faith, willingness and gladness. After long practice the bondage of old habits become weakened and disappears, and in its place appear confidence, satisfaction, awareness and tranquillity. What is the Way of Wisdom designed to accomplish? There are three classes of conditions that hinder one from advancing along the path to Enlightenment. First, there are the allurements arising from the senses, from external conditions and from the discriminating mind. Second, there are the internal conditions of the mind, its thoughts, desires and mood. All these the earlier practices (ethical and mortificatory) are designed to eliminate. In the third class of impediments are placed the individual’s instinctive and fundamental (and therefore most insidious and persistent) urges - the will to live and to enjoy, the will to cherish one’s personality, the will to propagate, which give rise to greed and lust, fear and anger, infatuation, pride and egotism. The practice of the Wisdom Paramita is designed to control and eliminate these fundamental and instinctive hindrances.

Anger | Awareness | Character | Confidence | Control | Discipline | Enlightenment | Failure | Faith | Fear | Feelings | Good | Greed | Habit | Individual | Insight | Lust | Man | Means | Merit | Mind | Personality | Practice | Pride | Purpose | Purpose | Tranquility | Understanding | Unhappiness | Will | Wisdom | Failure | Awareness | Old |

Joseph Marius von Babo

As it is in himself alone that man can find true and enduring happiness, so in himself alone can he find true and efficient consolation in misfortune.

Character | Consolation | Man | Misfortune | Wisdom |

Henry Whitney Bellows

When a man does a noble act, date him from that. Forget his faults. Let his noble act be the standpoint from which you regard him.

Character | Man | Regard |