Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Conduct

"Though religion... always envelops conduct, the sentiment of religion and the sense of moral value are distinct." - Samuel Alexander

"In the conduct of life, habits count for more than maxims; because habit is a living maxim, becomes flesh and instinct. To reform one's maxims is nothing: it is but to change the title of the book. To learn new habits is everything, for it is to reach the substance of life. Life is but a tissue of habits." -

"The best thing to give your enemy is forgiveness; to an opponent, tolerance; to a friend, your heart; to your child, a good example; to a father, deference; to your mother, conduct that will make her proud of you; to yourself, respect; to all men, charity." -

"The best thing to give to your enemy is forgiveness; to an opponent, tolerance; to a friend, your heart; to your child, a good example; to a father, deference; to your mother, conduct that will make her proud of you; to yourself, respect; to all men, charity." - Clara Lucas Balfour

"Dress has a moral effect upon the conduct of mankind." - Jonah Barrington, Sir Jonah Barrington

"The prevailing manners of an age depend, more than we are aware of, or are willing to allow, on the conduct of the women: this is one of the principal things on which the great machine of human society turns." - Hugh Blair

"One of the mistakes in the conduct of human life is to suppose that other men's opinions are to make us happy." - Richard Francis Burton, fully Sir Richard Francis Burton

"By moral power we mean the power of a life and a character, the power of good and great purposes, the power which comes at length to reside in a man distinguished in some course of estimable or great conduct. No other power of man compares with this, and there is no individual who may not be measurably invested with it." - Horace Bushnell

"Humanity is much more shown in our conduct towards animals, where we are irresponsible except to heaven, than towards our fellow-creatures, where we are restrained by the laws, by public opinion, and fear of retaliation." - Paul Chatfield, pseudonym for Horace Smith

"Watchfulness and industry are natural virtues, and recommended to us by the conduct even of brute creatures." - John Conybeare

"Repentance, to be of any avail, must work a change of heart and conduct." - Theodore Cuyler, fully Theodore Ledyard Cuyler

"To arrive at perfection, a man should have very sincere friends, or inveterate enemies; because he would be made sensible of his good or ill conduct either by the censures of the one or the admonitions of the others." - Diogenes Laërtius, aka "Diogenes the Cynic"

"What I am thinking and doing day by day is resistlessly shaping my future - a future in which there is no expiation except through my own better conduct. No one can save me. No one can live my life for me. If I am wise I shall begin today to build my own truer and better world from within." - Horatio W. Dresser

"People may change their minds as often as their coats, and new sets of rules of conduct may be written every week, but the fact remains that human nature has not changed and does not change, that inherent human beliefs stay the same; the fundamental rules of human conduct continue to hold." - Lammot du Pont

"The first American mingled with her pride a singular humility. Spiritual arrogance was foreign to his nature and teaching. He never claimed that his power of articulate speech was proof of superiority over “dumb creation”; on the other hand, speech to him is a perilous gift. He believes profoundly in silence - the sign of perfect equilibrium. silence is the absolute poise or balance of body, mind and spirit. The an who preserves his selfhood ever calm and unshaken by the storms of existence - not a leaf, as it were, astir on the tree, not a ripple upon the surface of the shining pool - his, in the mind of the unlettered sage, is the ideal attitude and conduct of life." - Charles Alexander Eastman, first named Ohiyesa

"He who does reverence to his own sect, while disparaging the sects of others wholly from attachment to his own, with intent to enhance the glory of his own sect, in reality by such conduct inflicts the severest injury on his own sect. Concord therefore is meritorious, to wit, hearkening and hearkening willingly to the Law of Piety, as accepted by other people." - Edicts of Ashoka NULL

"Sincerity is no test of truth - no evidence of correctness of conduct. You may take poison sincerely believing it the needed medicine, but will it save your life?" - Tyron Edwards

"Though a hundred crooked paths may conduct to a temporary success, the one plain and straight path of public and private virtue can alone lead to a pure and lasting fame and the blessings of posterity." - Edward Everett

"Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other, an scarcely in that; for it is true, we may give advice, but we cannot give conduct. Remember this; they that will not be counseled cannot be helped. If you do not hear reason she will rap you over your knuckles." - Benjamin Franklin

"The end of all moral speculations is to teach us our duty; and, by proper representations of deformity of vice, and beauty of virtue, beget correspondent habits, and engage us to avoid the one and embrace the other. But is this ever to be expected from inferences and conclusions of the understanding, which of themselves have no hold of the affections, or set in motion the active powers of men? They discover truths: but where the truths which they discover are indifferent, and beget no desire or aversion, they can have no influence on conduct and behavior." - David Hume

"It is our daily duty to consider that in all circumstances of life, pleasurable, painful, or otherwise, the conduct of every human being affects, more or less, the happiness of others, especially of those in the same house; and that, as life is made up, for the most part, not of great occasions, but of small everyday moments, it is the giving to those moments their greatest amount of peace, pleasantness, and security, that contributes most to the sum of human good. Be peaceable. Be cheerful. Be true." - James Henry Leigh Hunt

"There’ll be no night in Heav’n, In that blest world above; No anxious toil, no weary hours; For labor there is love. There’ll be no sorrow there, There’ll be no sorrow there, In Heav’n above, where all is love, There’ll be no sorrow there. There’ll be no grief in Heav’n, For life is one glad day, And tears are those of former things Which all have passed way. There’ll be no sin in Heav’n; Behold that blessèd throng, All holy in their spotless robes, All holy in their song." - Frederick Dan Huntington

"The most difficult job teenagers have today is learning good conduct without seeing any." - H. G. Hutcheson

"God may be worshipped and contemplated in any of his aspects. But to persist in worshipping only one aspect to the exclusion of all the rest is to run into grave spiritual peril... The best that can be said for ritualistic legalism is that it improves conduct. It does little, however, to alter character and nothing of itself to modify consciousness... The complete transformation of consciousness, which is “enlightenment,” “deliverance,” “salvation,” comes only when God is thought of as the perennial Philosophy affirms Him to be - immanent as well as transcendent, supra-personal as well as personal - and when religious practices are adapted to this conception." - Aldous Leonard Huxley

"It is in the light of our beliefs about the ultimate nature of reality that we formulate our conceptions of right and wrong; and it is in the light of our conceptions of right and wrong that we frame our conduct." - Aldous Leonard Huxley

"The aim and purpose of human life is the unitive knowledge of God. Among the indispensable means to that end is right conduct, and by the degree and kind of virtue achieved, the degree of liberating knowledge may be assessed and its quality evaluated. In a word, the tree is known by its fruits; God is not mocked." - Aldous Leonard Huxley

"Conduct thyself towards thy parents as thou wouldst wish thy children to conduct themselves towards thee." - Saint Isaac of Nineveh, also Isaac the Syrian, Isaac of Qatar and Isaac Syrus NULL

"The ultimate test for us of what a truth means is the conduct it dictates or inspires." - William James

""Every fault of the mind becomes more conspicuous and more guilty in proportion to the rank of the offender" - Persons in high station are not only answerable for their own conduct, but for the example they may hold out to others. This, joined to their advantages of education, aggravates their vices and loads them with a greater share of responsibility." - Juvenal, fully Decimus Junius Juvenalis NULL

"The great rule of moral conduct is, next to God, to respect time." - Johann Kaspar Lavater

"To compose our character is our duty, not to compose books, and to win, not battles and province, but order and tranquillity in our conduct. Our great and glorious masterpiece is to live appropriately. All other things, to rule, to lay up treasure, to build, are at most but little appendices and props." - Michel de Montaigne, fully Lord Michel Eyquem de Montaigne

"Proverbs are but rules, and rules do not create character. They prescribe conduct, but do not furnish a full and proper motive. They are usually but half truths, and seldom contain the principle of the action they teach." - Theodore T. Munger

"The People have the right to the Truth as they have a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It is not right that they be exploited and deceived with false views of life, false characters, false sentiment, false morality, false history, false philosophy, false emotions, false heroism, false notions of self-sacrifice, false views of religion , of duty, of conduct and manners." - Benjamin Franklin "Frank" Norris

"There is nothing a man can less afford to leave at home than his conscience or his good habits; for it is not to be denied that travel is, in its immediate circumstances, unfavorable to habits of self-discipline, regulation of thought, sobriety of conduct, and dignity of character. Indeed, one of the great lessons of travel is the discovery how much our virtues owe to the support of constant occupation, to the influence of public opinion, and to the force of habit; a discovery very dangerous, if it proceed from an actual yielding to temptations resisted at home, and not from a consciousness of increased power put forth in withstanding them." - Richardson Pack or Packe

"'Tis the business of little minds to shrink; but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death." - Thomas Paine

"True religion shows its influence in every part of our conduct: it is like the sap of a living tree, which penetrates the most distant boughs." - William Penn

"The real value of any doctrine can only be determined by its influence on the conduct of man, with respect to himself, to his fellow-creatures, or to God." - Margaret Percival

"It is not by running hither and thither outside of itself that the soul understands morality and right conduct: it learns them of its own nature, in its contact with itself, in its intellectual grasp of itself, seeing deeply impressed upon it the images of its primal state." - Plotinus NULL

"Depend not on fortune, but on conduct." - Publius Syrus

"Right conduct can never, except by some rare accident, be promoted by ignorance or hindered by knowledge." -

"Fine conduct is always spontaneous." -

"Conscience is doubtless sufficient to conduct the coldest character into the road of virtue; but enthusiasm is to conscience what honor is to duty; there is in us a superfluity of soul, which it is sweet to consecrate to the beautiful when the good has been accomplished." -

"Each successive generation plunges into the abyss of passion, without the slightest regard to the fatal effects which such conduct has produced upon their predecessors; and lament, when too late, the rashness with which they slighted the advice of experience, and stifled the voice of reason." - Richard Steele, fully Sir Richard Steele

"It is a secret known but to few, yet of no small use in the conduct of life, that when you fall into a man's conversation, the first thing you should consider is, whether he has a greater inclination to hear you, or that you should hear him." - Richard Steele, fully Sir Richard Steele

"One may as well be asleep as to read for anything but to improve his mind and morals, and regulate his conduct." - Lawrence Sterne, alternatively Laurence Sterne

"The right relation between prayer and conduct is not that conduct is supremely important and prayer may help it, but that prayer is supremely important and conduct tests it." - William Temple, fully Archbishop William Temple

"The world is made better by ever man improving his own conduct; and no reform is accomplished wholesale." - William Allen White

"Human conduct is ever unreliable until man is anchored in the Divine. Everything in future will improve if you are making a spiritual effort now." - Yukteswar, fully Swami Sri Yukteswar Giri, born Priyanath Karar NULL

"In the conduct of life, habits count for more than maxims; because habit is a living maxim, becomes flesh and instinct. To reform one's maxims is nothing: it is but to change the title of the book. To learn new habits is." -

"What we opprobriously call stupidity... is nature's favourite resource for preserving steadiness of conduct and consistency of opinion." - Walter Bagehot