Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Science

"Without faith a man can do nothing. But faith can stifle all science." -

"Moral virtue can be without some of the intellectual virtues, namely, wisdom, science and art, but not without understanding and prudence. Moral virtue cannot be without prudence, because moral virtue is habit of choosing, that is, making us choose well." -

"Look at nature with science as a lens. The rock swarms, the clod dances; the mineral is but the vegetable stepping down, and the animal an ascending plant; the man, a beast extended; and the angel, a developed human soul." -

"It is better to inspire the heart with a noble sentiment than to teach the mind a truth of science." - Phillips Brooks

"Knowledge is not happiness, and science but an exchange of ignorance for that which is another kind of ignorance." -

"The true science and study of man is man." - Pierre Charron

"The whole history of science, art and morals proves that the mind that appears in individuals, is not as such individual mind. The former is in itself a system of belief, recognitions, and ignorances, of acceptances and rejections, of expectancies and appraisals of meanings which have been instituted under the influence of custom and tradition." - John Dewey

"The vital force in business life is the honest desire to serve. Business, it is said, is the science of service. He profits most who serves best. At the very bottom of the wish to render service must be honesty of purpose, and, as I go along through life, I see more and more that honesty in word, thought, and work means success. It spells a life worth living and in business clean success." - Abba Eban, born Aubrey Solomon Meir Eban

"Without the belief in the inner harmony of the world there could be no science." - Albert Einstein

"The reason for so much bad science is not that talent is rare - not at all. What is rare is character." - Sigmund Freud, born Sigismund Schlomo Freud

"Only science can hope to keep technology in some sort of moral order." - Edgar Z. Friedenberg

"The seven sins of the world. Wealth without work. Pleasure without conscience. Knowledge without character. Commerce without morality. Science without humanity. Worship without sacrifice. Politics without principle." -

"Moral philosophy is nothing else but the science of what is good and evil in the conversation and society of mankind. God and evil are names that signify our appetites and aversions, which in different tempers, customs and doctrines of men are different." - Thomas Hobbes

"Art and science create a balance to material life and enlarge the world of living experience. Art leads to a more profound concept of life, because art itself is a profound expression of feeling." - Hans Hoffman

"Mortifications have their reward in a state of consciousness that corresponds, on a lower level, to spiritual beatitude. The artist - and the philosopher and the man of science are also artists - knows the bliss of aesthetic contemplation, discovery and non-attached possession. The goods of the intellect, the emotions and the imagination are real goods; but they are not the final good, and when we treat them as ends in themselves, we fall into idolatry. Mortification of will, desire and action is not enough; there must also be mortification in the fields of knowing, thinking feeling and fancying." - Aldous Leonard Huxley

"We may, if we like, by our reasonings unwind things to that black and jointless continuity of space and moving clouds of swarming atoms which science calls the only real world. But all the while the world we feel and live in will be that which our ancestors and we, by slowly cumulative strokes of choice, have extricated out of this, like sculptors, by simply rejecting certain portion of the given stuff. Other sculptors, other statues from the same stone! Other minds, other worlds from the same monotonous and inexpressive chaos! My world is but one in a million alike embedded, alike real to those who may abstract them." - William James

"Both the saint and the scientist must possess the same qualities in order to attain their ideals. But these qualities are selfless devotion, a meticulous love of truth, infinite patience, thoroughness, and a depth of mind which does not resent criticism. Without these qualities neither of the two can reach his goal. It is my firm belief that the goal which both science and religion reach by different routes is one and the same." - B. C. Kher

"Nominally a great age of scientific inquiry, ours has actually become an age of superstition about the infallibility of science; of almost mystical faith in its nonmystical methods; above all... of external verities; of traffic-cop morality and rabbit-test truth." - Louis Kronenberger

"Science offers us complete mastery over our environment and our own destiny, yet instead of rejoicing we feel deeply afraid. Why should this be?" - Edmund Leach, fully Sir Edmund Ronald Leach

"Science does not make us happy; the highest morality alone is capable of conferring true happiness upon us." - Samuel David Luzzatto, aka by acronym of SHaDaL or SHeDaL

"New ideas have a hard time in science. They tend to be suppressed by arrogance - condemnation by acknowledged leaders in the field... Dogmatism restrains, iconoclasm liberates. Vanity, powermongering, avariciousness, pride, dedication, love, industry, sadism and most other attributes of people apply to science and to scientists as well." - Lynn Margulis and Carl Lindegren

"Science by itself has no moral dimension. But it does seek to establish truth. And upon this truth morality can be built." - William H. Masters

"To the acquisition of the rare quality of politeness, so much of the enlightened understanding is necessary that I cannot but consider every book in every science, which tends to make us wiser, and of course better men, as a treatise on a more enlarged system of politeness." - Neil Monro, sometimes wrote under pen name Hugh Foulis

"Courtesy is a science of the highest importance. It is, like grace and beauty in the body, which charm at first sight, and lend on to further intimacy and friendship, opening a door that we may derive instruction from the example of others, and at the same time enabling us to benefit them by our example, if there by anything in our character worthy of imitation." - Michel de Montaigne, fully Lord Michel Eyquem de Montaigne

"Many persons, after they become learned cease to be good; all other knowledge is hurtful to him who has not the science of honesty and good nature." - Michel de Montaigne, fully Lord Michel Eyquem de Montaigne

"The man who is a drunkard has no intellectual freedom. Science declares that alcohol seeks the intellectual faculties, clogs the brain cells, distorts the reason, vitiates the mind, shatters the nerve centres, and he who is diseased with inebriety cannot enjoy intellectual freedom." - Thomas C. Murphy

"If we crave for the goal that is worthy and fitting for man, namely, happiness of life - and this is accomplished by philosophy alone and by nothing else, and philosophy, as I said, means for us desire for wisdom, and wisdom the science of truth in things, and of things some are properly so called, others merely share the name - it is reasonable and most necessary to distinguish and systematize the accidental qualities of things." - Nicomachus of Gerasa NULL

"Knowledge has three degrees: opinion, science, illumination. The means or instrument of the first is sense; of the second, dialectic; of the third, intuition. To the last I subordinate reason. It is absolute knowledge founded on the identity of the mind knowing with the object known." - Plotinus NULL

"There are hosts of men, of the profoundest thought, who find nothing in the disclosures of science to shake their faith in the eternal virtues of reason and religion." - George Ripley

"It would be a mistake to found a natural science on ‘what we really think’ ... opinions are interpretations, and often misinterpretations, of sense-experience; and the man of science must appeal from these to sense-experience itself, which furnishes his real data. In ethics no such appeal is possible... the moral convictions of thoughtful and well-educated people are the data of ethics just as sense-perceptions are the data of a natural science." - W. D. Ross, fully Sir William David Ross

"Science, by itself, cannot supply us with an ethic. It can show us how to achieve a given end, and it may show us that some ends cannot be achieved." -

"We can make truth ours by actively modulating its inter-relations. This is the work of art; for reality is not based in the substance of things but in the principle of relationship. Truth is the infinite pursued by metaphysics; fact is the infinite pursued by science, while reality is the definition of the infinite which relates truth to the person. Reality is human; it is what we are conscious of, by which we are affected, that which we express." -

"The highest wisdom is not founded on reason alone, not on those worldly sciences of physics, history, chemistry, and the like, into which intellectual knowledge is divided. The highest wisdom is one. The highest wisdom has but one science - the science of the whole - the science explaining the whole creation and man’s place in it. To receive that science it is necessary to purity and renew one’s inner self, and so before one can know, it is necessary to believe and to perfect one’s self. And to attain this end, we have the light called conscinece tht God has implanted in our souls." -

"A land ethic for tomorrow should be as honest as Thoreau's Walden, and as comprehensive as the sensitive science of ecology. It should stress the oneness of our resources and the live-and-help-live logic of the great chain of life. If, in our haste to "progress," the economics of ecology are disregarded by citizens and policy makers alike, the result will be an ugly America." - Stewart Udall, Fully Stewart Lee Udall

"Facts, when combined with ideas, constitute the greatest force in the world. They are greater than armaments, greater than finance, greater than science, business and law because they constitute the common denominator of all of them." - Carl William Ackerman

"Society rests upon conscience and not upon science." -

"The general conclusion is that all the objects of science, including minds and goods, are things occurring in space and time... and that we can study them in virtue of the fact that we come into spatial and temporal relations with them. And therefore all ideals, ultimates, symbols, agencies and the like are to be rejected, and no such distinction as that of facts and principles, or facts and values, can be maintained. There are only facts, i.e., occurrences in space and time." - John Anderson

"A time will come when the science of destruction shall bend before the arts of peace; when the genius which multiplies our powers, which creates new products, which diffuses comfort and happiness among the great mass of the people, shall occupy in the general estimation of mankind that rank which reason and common sense now assign to it." - François Arago, fully François Jean Dominique Arago

"Religion is a hunger for beauty and love and glory. It is wonder and the mystery and majesty, passion and ecstasy. It is emotion as well as mind, feeling as well as knowing, the subjective as well as the objective. It is the heart soaring to heights the head alone will never know; the apprehension of meanings science alone will never find; the awareness of values ethics alone will never reveal. It is the human spirit yearning for, and finding, something infinitely greater than itself which it calls God." - Waldemar Argow, fully Wendelin Waldemar Wieland Argow

"The goal of our intellectual efforts cannot be a static, polished possession; it can only be further, more successful efforts of the same general kind. In science as in life it is the process, not the terminus, that should concern us - if we are wise." - Bruce A. Aune

"Every answer given arouses new questions. The progress of science is matched by an increase in the hidden and mysterious." - Leo Baeck

"No great advance has ever been made in science, politics, or religion, without controversy." - Lyman Beecher

"With monstrous weapons man already has, humanity is in danger of being trapped in this world by its moral adolescents. Our knowledge of science has already outstripped our capacity to control it. We have many men of science, too few men of God." -

"Art was made to disturb, science reassures....There is only one valuable thing in art: the thing you cannot explain." -

"Science and religion, religion and science, put it as I may, they are two sides of the same glass, through which we see darkly until these two, focusing together, reveal the truth." - Pearl S. Buck, fully Pearl Sydenstricker Buck, also known by her Chinese name Sai Zhenzhu

"In science, read, by preference, the newest works; in literature, the oldest. The classic literature is always modern. New books revive and redecorate old ideas; old books suggest and invigorate new ideas." - Edward Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton, fully Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, Lord Lytton

"But when science, passing beyond its own limits, assumes to take the place of theology, and sets up its own conception of the order of nature as a sufficient account of its cause, it is invading a province of thought to which it has no claim, and not unreasonably provokes the hostility of its best friends." -