Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Murder

"Sooner murder an infant in its cradle than nurse unacted desires." - William Blake

"The failure of our modern world, with its moral and ethical collapse, may be traced directly to our spiritual ignorance and moral disobedience. The ethical conditions under which we live are disgracefully unsanitary. It is futile to expect peace and goodwill on earth while our homes are infested with the germs of selfishness, irreverence and lust. The world-wide epidemic of hatred, cruelty, murder and war is the inevitable result of our moral and spiritual disobedience. We cannot break the laws of the universe with impunity." - Allen E. Claxton

"Vanity, like murder, will out." - Hannah Cowley

"To murder character is as truly a crime as to murder the body: the tongue of the slanderer is brother to the dagger of the assassin." - Tyron Edwards

"Passivity is the dragon that every woman has to murder in her conquest for independence." - Jill Johnston

"The most stormy ebullitions of passion, from blasphemy to murder, are less terrific than one single act of cool villainy; a still rabies is more dangerous than the paroxysms of a fever. Fear the boisterous savage of passion less than the sedately grinning villain." - Johann Kaspar Lavater

"One murder makes a villain; millions, a hero; numbers sanctify the crime." - Beilby Porteus

"If choosing freely for oneself is the highest value, the free choice to wear red socks is as valuable as the free choice to murder one’s father or sacrifice oneself for one’s friend. Such a belief is ridiculous." - Mary Warnock, fully Helen Mary Warnock, Baroness Warnock

"The house of every man is his castle, and if thieves come to a man’s house to rob or murder, and the owner or his servants kill any of the thieves in defense of himself and his house, it is no felony and he lose nothing." - Edward Coke, fully Sir Edward Coke

"To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder." - Albert Einstein

"The most shocking fact about war is that its victims and its instruments are individual human beings, and that these individual beings are condemned by the monstrous convention of politics to murder or be murdered in quarrels not their own." - Aldous Leonard Huxley

"What right has any free, reasonable soul on earth to sell himself for a shilling a day to murder any man, right or wrong?" - Charles Kingsley

"War mends but few, and spoils multitudes; it legitimates rapine and authorizes murder; and these crimes must be ministered to by their lesser relatives, by covetousness and anger and pride and revenge, and heats of blood, and wilder liberty, and all the evil that can be supposed to come from or run to such cursed causes of mischief." - Jeremy Taylor

"Drinking of wine brings poverty, shame, quarrels; leads to calumnious talk, unchastity, murder, and the loss of freedom, of honor, of understanding." - Tosafot or Tosafos NULL

"Love or perish; it is not a new commandment but its full impact was hidden from us, because we had not known, up to the recent past, that we were capable of mass murder and even of cosmic murder." - Philip Berrigan

"If the Day of Judgment came tomorrow, and God asked us what we had made of His revelation, of His grace and our freedom… we would be hard put to it to explain the advantages of a machine civilization whose highest efficiency is used for murder and slavery." - R. L. Bruckberger, fully Raymond Léopold Bruckberger

"It was for the sake of security that the people of ancient ties turned to the Baals and other idols. Today, our oppressors turn to money and military power and to the so-called security forces. But their security is insecurity. We experience their security as intimidation and repression, terror, rape and murder. Those who turn to the idols for security demand our insecurity as the price that must be paid." - Center of Concern NULL

"Reading, reflection and time have convinced me that the interests of society require the observation of those moral precepts only in which all religions agree (for all forbid us to murder, steal, plunder, or bear false witness) and that we should not intermeddle with the particular dogmas in which all religions differ, which are totally unconnected with morality." - Thomas Jefferson

"The historical Jesus has a different category of sins from that of the Old Testament or of Paul or of ecclesiastical writers after him. The sins which occupied the attention of Jesus were hypocrisy, wordliness, intolerance, and selfishness. The sins which occupy the principal attention of the Church… are impurity, murder, the drinking of alcohol, swearing, the neglect of the Church’s services and ordinances." - Robert Keable

"Political language… is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give the appearance of solidity to pure wind." -

"There is no history of mankind, there is only an indefinite number of histories of all kinds of aspects of human life. And one of these is the history of political power. This is elevated into the history of the world. But… the history of power politics is nothing but the history of international crime and mass murder… This history is taught in schools, and some of the greatest criminals are extolled as its heroes." -

"To make a single poem we need to kill. We must kill many things. Shoot, murder, poison many of the things we love." - Tamura Ryūichi

"The aim and end of war is murder; the weapons employed in war are espionage, treachery and the encouragement of treachery, the ruining of a country, the plundering and robbing of its inhabitants for the maintenance of the army, and trickery and lying which all appear under the heading of the art of war. The military world is characterized by the absence of freedom – in other words, a rigorous discipline – enforced inactivity, ignorance, cruelty, debauchery, and drunkenness." - Leo Tolstoy, aka Count Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy or Tolstoi

"To bring into the world an unwanted human being is as antisocial an act as murder." - Gore Vidal, fully Eugene Luther Gore Vidal

"The truth is often a terrible weapon of aggression. It is possible to lie, and even to murder, for the truth." - Alfred Adler

"The "truth" is often a terrible weapon of aggression. It is possible to lie, and even to murder, for the truth." - Alfred Adler

"As one whose husband and mother-in-law have both died the victims of murder assassination, I stand firmly and unequivocally opposed to the death penalty for those convicted of capital offenses. An evil deed is not redeemed by an evil deed of retaliation. Justice is never advanced in the taking of a human life. Morality is never upheld by legalized murder." - Coretta Scott King

"When a man wants to murder a tiger he calls it sport: when the tiger wants to murder him he calls it ferocity." - George Bernard Shaw

"When a man wants to murder a tiger, he calls it sport: when the tiger wants to murder him, he calls it ferocity. The distinction between crime and justice is no greater." - George Bernard Shaw

"There is no likeness or proportion between life, however painful, and death; and therefore there is no equality between the crime of murder and the retaliation of it but what is judicially accomplished by the execution of the criminal. His death, however, must be kept free from all maltreatment that would make the humanity suffering in his person loathsome or abominable." - Immanuel Kant

"Disarm, disarm. The sword of murder is not the balance of justice. Blood does not wipe out dishonor, nor violence indicate possession." - Julia Ward Howe

"The time will come when men… will look on the murder of animals as the now look on the murder of men." - Leonardo da Vinci, fully Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci

"Character is always known. Thefts never enrich; alms never impoverish; murder will speak out of stone walls. The least admixture of a lie - for example, the taint of vanity, any attempt to make a good impression, a favorable appearance - will instantly vitiate the effect. But speak the truth and all nature and all spirits help you with unexpected furtherance." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Character is always known. Thefts never enrich; alms never impoverish; murder will speak out of stone walls." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"By all human laws, as well as divine, self-murder has ever been agreed on a the greatest crime." - William Temple, fully Sir William Temple, 1st Baronet

"An envious man waxeth lean with the fatness of his neighbors. Envy is murder and revenge, the beginner of secret sedition and the perpetual tormentor of virtue. Envy is the filthy slime of the soul; a venom, a poison, or quicksilver which consumeth the flesh and drieth up the marrow of bones." - Socrates NULL

"AIDS obliges people to thin of sex as having, possibly, the direst consequences: suicide. Or murder." - Susan Sontag

"Political language… is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give the appearance of solidity to pure wind." - George Orwell, pen name of Eric Arthur Blair

"Is it worse to kill someone than to let someone die? It seems obvious to common sense that it is worse. We allow people to die, for example, when we fail to contribute money to famine-relief efforts; but even if we feel somewhat guilty, we do not consider ourselves murderers. Nor do we feel like accessories to murder when we fail to give blood, sign an organ-donor card, or do any of the other things that could save lives. Common sense tells us that, while we may not kill people, our duty to give them aid is much more limited." - James Rachels

"Now, there are many millions in their sects and churches who feel the order, 'Do thou,' and throw their weight into obedience. And there are millions more who feel predestination in 'Thou shalt.' Nothing they may do can interfere with what will be. But 'Thou mayest'! Why, that makes a man great, that gives him stature with the gods, for in his weakness and his filth and his murder of his brother he has still the great choice. He can choose his course and fight it through and win." - John Steinbeck, fully John Ernst Steinbeck

"And, in fact, if these crimes appeal less to the senses, they appeal more to the mind; and the mind, in the last analysis, is the profoundest part of us. For the novelist, therefore, there is a new type of tragedy to be derived from these crimes, more intellectual than physical in character, which do not really seem to be crimes to the superficial judgement of old materialistic societies because they do not involve bloodshed, and murder is committed only in the sphere of feelings and manners." - Jules Amédée Barbey d'Aurevilly

"The time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look on the murder of men." - Leonardo da Vinci, fully Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci

"I have from an early age abjured the use of meat, and the time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men." - Leonardo da Vinci, fully Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci

"To think that you died and no one would remember you. I wondered if this was why we tried so hard to make our mark in America. To be known. Think of how important celebrity has become. We sing to get famous; expose our worst secrets to get famous; lose weight, eat bugs, even commit murder to get famous. Our young people post their deepest thoughts on public web sites. They run cameras from their bedrooms. It’s as if we are screaming Notice Me! Remember Me! Yet the notoriety barely lasts. Names quickly blur and in time are forgotten. " - Mitch Albom, fully Mitchell David "Mitch" Albom

"The Ten Mohist Doctrines [paraphrase] As their movement developed, the Mohists came to present themselves as offering a collection of ten key doctrines, divided into five pairs. The ten doctrines correspond to the titles of the ten triads, the ten sets of three essays that form the core of the Mozi. Although the essays in each triad differ in detail, the gist of each doctrine may be briefly summarized as follows. “Elevating the Worthy” and “Conforming Upward.” The purpose of government is to achieve a stable social, economic, and political order (zhi, pronounced “jr”) by promulgating a unified conception of morality (yi). This task of moral education is to be carried out by encouraging everyone to “conform upward” to the good example set by social and political superiors and by rewarding those who do so and punishing those who do not. Government is to be structured as a centralized, bureaucratic state led by a virtuous monarch and managed by a hierarchy of appointed officials. Appointments are to be made on the basis of competence and moral merit, without regard for candidates' social status or origins. “Inclusive Care” and “Rejecting Aggression.” To achieve social order and exemplify the key virtue of ren (humanity, goodwill), people must inclusively care for each other, having as much concern for others' lives, families, and communities as for their own, and in their relations with others seek to benefit them. Military aggression is wrong for the same reasons that theft, robbery, and murder are: it harms others in pursuit of selfish benefit, while ultimately failing to benefit Heaven, the spirits, or society as a whole. “Thrift in Utilization” and “Thrift in Funerals.” To benefit society and care for the welfare of the people, wasteful luxury and useless expenditures must be eliminated. Seeking always to bring wealth to the people and order to society, the ren (humane) person avoids wasting resources on extravagant funerals and prolonged mourning (which were the custom in ancient China). “Heaven's Intention” and “Elucidating Ghosts.” Heaven is the noblest, wisest moral agent, so its intention is a reliable, objective standard of what is morally right (yi) and must be respected. Heaven rewards those who obey its intention and punishes those who defy it, hence people should strive to be humane and do what is right. Social and moral order (zhi) can be advanced by encouraging belief in ghosts and spirits who reward the good and punish the wicked. “Rejecting Music” and “Rejecting Fatalism.” The humane (ren) person opposes the extravagant musical entertainment and other luxuries enjoyed by rulers and high officials, because these waste resources that could otherwise be used for feeding and clothing the common people. Fatalism is not ren, because by teaching that our lot in life is predestined and human effort is useless, it interferes with the pursuit of economic wealth, a large population, and social order (three primary goods that the humane person desires for society). Fatalism fails to meet a series of justificatory criteria and so must be rejected." - Mozi or Mo-tze, Mocius or Mo-tzu, original name Mo Di, aka Master Mo NULL

"Destruction is not the law of humans. Man lives freely only by his readiness to die, if need be, at the hands of his brother, never by killing him. Every murder or other injury, no matter for what cause, committed or inflicted on another is a crime against humanity." - Mahatma Gandhi, fully Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, aka Bapu

"We could not guard every water pipeline from being blown up and every tree from being uprooted. We could not prevent every murder of a worker in an orchard or a family in their beds. But it was in our power to set high price for our blood, a price too high for the Arab community, the Arab army, or the Arab governments to think it worth paying. . . It was in our power to cause the Arab governments to renounce 'the policy of strength' toward Israel by turning it into a demonstration of weakness." - Moshe Dayan

"Why should they ask me to put on a uniform and go 10,000 miles from home and drop bombs and bullets on Brown people in Vietnam while so-called Negro people in Louisville are treated like dogs and denied simple human rights? No I’m not going 10,000 miles from home to help murder and burn another poor nation simply to continue the domination of white slave masters of the darker people the world over. This is the day when such evils must come to an end. I have been warned that to take such a stand would cost me millions of dollars. But I have said it once and I will say it again. The real enemy of my people is here. I will not disgrace my religion, my people or myself by becoming a tool to enslave those who are fighting for their own justice, freedom and equality. If I thought the war was going to bring freedom and equality to 22 million of my people they wouldn’t have to draft me, I’d join tomorrow. I have nothing to lose by standing up for my beliefs. So I’ll go to jail, so what? We’ve been in jail for 400 years." - Muhammad Ali, born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr.

"A man who stepped quarter of a million miles in space to the moon was unable to step length, a few meters of assisted his colleagues are dying of hunger in India and other Ashakhm injustice in Jerusalem, Vietnam .. and America meets Russia to brighten up the moon and fail to meet them in the Security Council. and escape from that soul and to Atbha space universe where the laws of God to rely on accurate it is safe and easy .. A thousand times easier than observing i'tikaaf rights on the same repairs and He should work out .. but at the same time escape from man's first message on the ground... To know himself and He should work out. Thought and religion and science together make man himself... The physical science alone, without faith and without creating not only made ​​from the same arrogant and distorted deformity giant moving between planets and invent a terrible terrible weapons of mass murder by destroying the All, and then destroys himself without knowing it. " - Mustapha Mahmoud