Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Think

"Upon every hand we meet with those who have some secret resentment that is ever being nurtured within their hearts. They resent the success, or happiness of some one whom they think is less deserving than they are. They resent the just recognition that comes to others from work and long effort to excel. Or, they may resent being born poor - or resent the fact that they were even born!... Strive to excel, strive to achieve, where others have failed, and you will find no space within your mind to lodge resentment. Resentment is the child of selfishness, foolish envy, and inactivity... Our life upon this earth is too valuable for resentment of any kind. There is so much to do, so much to learn - so little time in which to live and work it all out." - George Matthew Adams

"A man's true greatness lies in the consciousness of an honest purpose in life, founded on a just estimate of himself and everything else, on frequent self-examinations, and a steady obedience to the rule which he knows to be right, without troubling himself about what others may think or say, or whether they do or do not that which he thinks and says and does." - Marcus Aurelius, Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus

"Our dispositions will be suitable to that which we most frequently think on; for the soul is, as it were, tinged with the colour and complexion of its own thoughts." - Marcus Aurelius, Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus

"Your disposition will be suitable to that which you most frequently think on; for the soul is, as it were, tinged with the color and complexion of its own thoughts." - Marcus Aurelius, Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus

"It is axiomatic that we should all think of ourselves as being more sensitive than other people because, when we are insensitive in our dealings with others, we cannot be aware of it at the time: conscious insensitivity is a self-contradiction." - W. H. Auden, fully Wystan Hugh Auden

"Public opinion is a permeating influence, and it exacts obedience to itself; it requires us to think other men's thoughts, to speak other men's words, to follow other men's habits." - Walter Bagehot

"Those who refuse the long drudgery of thought, and think with the heart rather than the head, are ever the most fiercely dogmatic in tone." -

"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." - Henri Bergson, aka Henri-Louis Bergson

"The first step towards a creation of character lies, then, in the deliberate choosing of what we think and then thinking persistently on the chosen quality." - Pierre de Bérulle

"Graceful, particularly in youth, is the tear of sympathy, and the heart that melts at the tale of woe; we should not permit ease and indulgence to contract our affections, and wrap us up in selfish enjoyment. But we should accustom ourselves to think of the distresses of human life, of the solitary cottage, the dying parent, and the weeping orphan. Nor ought we ever to sport with pain and distress in any of our amusements, or treat even the meanest insect with wanton cruelty." - Hugh Blair

"A person ruled by his negative emotions will not be able to think straight." - Yitzchok Blauser, aka Reb Itzelle Peterburger

"It is a fundamental principle that no person can entirely free himself from taking the people in his environment into consideration. When doing something in the presence of others, it is impossible not to think about how other people will view what you are doing... Any good act you do will be much purer if others are not aware of you." - Yosef Leib Bloch, fully R' Yosef Yehudah Leib Bloch

"To speak well supposes a habit of attention which shows itself in the thought; by language we learn to think and above all to develop thought." - Carl Victor de Bonstetten

"Give a child the habit of sacredly regarding the truth - of carefully respecting the property of others - of scrupulously abstaining from all acts of improvidence which can involve him in distress, and he will just as likely think of rushing into the element in which he cannot breathe, as of lying or cheating or stealing." -

"Let no man think lightly of good, saying in his heart, it will not benefit me. Even by the falling of water-drops a water-pot is filled; the wise man becomes full of good, even if he gather it little by little." - Buddha, Gautama Buddha, or The Buddha, also Gotama Buddha, Siddhārtha Gautama Buddha and Buddha Śākyamuni NULL

"Earnest men never think in vain, though their thoughts may be errors." -

"It is astonishing how well men wear when they think of no one but themselves." -

"Young men think old men fools, and old men know young men to be so." - William Camden

"All that a man does outwardly is but the expression and completion of his inward thought. To work effectually, he must think clearly; to act nobly, he must think nobly. Intellectual force is a principal element of the soul’s life, and should be proposed by every man as the principal end of his being." - William Ellery Channing

"To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion; to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not rich; to study hard, think quietly, talk gently, act frankly; to listen to stars and birds, to babes and sages, with open heart; to bear all cheerfully, do all bravely, await occasions, hurry never. In a word, to let the spiritual unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common. This is to be my symphony." - William Ellery Channing

"Some people habitually wear sadness, like a garment, and think it a becoming grace. God loves a cheerful worshipper." - Edwin Hubbell Chapin

"The guilty think all talk is of themselves." - Geoffrey Chaucer

"All of our controlling behavior - our anger, blame, pouting, teaching, explaining, caretaking, compliance, and denial - comes from believing that we can control what others think of us and how they treat us, and that how they think of us and treat us defines us." - Erika Chopich and Margaret Paul

"All men seek the society of those who think and act somewhat like themselves." - William Cobbett

"If we think of life as a journey and consider it to be the opportunity for getting from where we are to where we want to be, we will have a working rule that provides us with both a purpose and expanding possibilities for our lives." - Fred Pierce Corson

"The very nearest approach to domestic happiness on earth is in the cultivation on both sides of absolute unselfishness. Never both be angry at once. Never talk at one another, either alone or in company. Never speak loud to one another unless the house is on fire. Let each; one strive to yield oftenest to the wishes of the other. Let self-denial be the daily aim and practice of each. Never find fault unless it is perfectly certain that a fault has been committed, and always speak lovingly. Never taunt with a past mistake. Neglect the whole world besides rather than one another. Never allow a request to be repeated. Never make a remark at the expense of each other, it is a meanness. Never part for a day without loving words to think of during absence. Never meet without a loving welcome. Never let the sun go down upon any anger or grievance. Never let any fault you have committed go by until you have frankly confessed it and asked forgiveness. Never forget the happy hours of early love. Never sigh over what might have been, but make the best of what is. Never forget that marriage is ordained of God, and that His blessing alone can make it what it should ever be. Never be contented till you know you are both walking in the narrow way. Never let your hopes stop short of the eternal home." - Edward Watke, Jr.

"If you try to subdue your selfish motives - anger and so forth - and develop more kindness and compassion for others, ultimately you yourself will benefit more than you would otherwise. So sometimes I say that the wise selfish person should practice this way. Foolish selfish people are always thinking of themselves, and the result is negative. Wise selfish people think of others, help others as much as they can, and the result is that they too receive benefit." -

"The life each of us lives is the life within the limits of our own thinking. To have life more abundant, we must think in the limitless terms of abundance." - Thomas Dreier

"It is better to give love. Hatred is a low and degrading emotion and is so poisonous that no man is strong enough to use it safely. The hatred we think we are directing against some person or thing or system has a devilish way of turning back upon us. When we seek revenge we administer slow poison to ourselves. When we administer affection it is astonishing what magical results we obtain." - Thomas Dreier

"The trouble with most people is that they think with their hopes or fears or wishes rather than with their minds." - Walter Duranty

"The true Indian sets no price upon either his property or his labor. His generosity is limited only by his strength and ability. He regards it as an honor to be selected for a difficult or dangerous service, and would think it shameful to ask for any reward, saying rather: “Let the person I serve express his thanks according to his own bringing up and his sense of honor.”" - Charles Alexander Eastman, first named Ohiyesa

"Without creative personalities able to think and judge independently, the upward development of society is as unthinkable as the development of the individual personality without the nourishing soil of the community." - Albert Einstein

"Be unselfish. That is the first and final commandment for those who would be useful, and happy in their usefulness. If you think of yourself only, you cannot develop because you are choking the source of development, which is spiritual expansion through thought for others." - Charles W. Eliot

"Don't think too much about yourselves. Try to cultivate the habit of thinking of others; this will reward you. Nourish your minds by good reading, constant reading. Discover what your lifework is, work in which you can do most good, in which you can be happiest. Be unafraid in all things when you know you are in the right." - Charles W. Eliot

"Our life is determined for us; and it makes the mind very free when we give up wishing, and only think of bearing what is laid upon us and doing what is given us to do." - George Eliot, pen name of Mary Ann or Marian Evans

"Set aside an amount of money that you will give away if you become angry. Be sure it is a sufficient amount of money to make you think twice before becoming angry." - Eliyahu de Vidas,

"Those who think they have nothing to give should always remember that they can always give themselves, and that they can always render some kind of service even if it be nothing more than a few words of cheer." - Lowell Fillmore

"If you see a fault in others, think of two of your own, and do not add a third one by your hasty judgment." -

"You will find men who want to be carried on the shoulders of others, who think that the world owes them a living. They don't seem to see that we must all lift together and pull together." - Henry Ford

"We settle things by a majority vote, and the psychological effect of doing that is to create the impression that the majority is probably right. Of course, on any fine issue the majority is sure to be wrong. Think of taking a majority vote on the best music. Jazz would win over Chopin. Or on the best novel. Many cheap scribblers would win over Tolstoy. And any day a prizefight will get a bigger crowd, larger gate receipts and wider newspaper publicity than any new revelation of goodness, truth or beauty could hope to achieve in a century." - Harry Emerson Fosdick

"We must dare to think unthinkable thoughts." - James William Fulbright

"Good manners may in Seven Words be found: Forget Yourself and think of Those Around." - Arthur Guiterman

"If men would think more, they would act less." - Charles Montagu Halifax, 1st Earl of Halifax, Lord Halifax

"Worldly ambition is founded on pride or envy, but emulation, or laudable ambition, is actually founded in humility; for it evidently implies that we have a low opinion of our present attainments, and think it necessary to be advanced." - Robert Hall

"I never think he is quite ready for another world who is altogether weary of this." - Hugh Hamilton

"It is much easier to think right without doing right, than to do right without thinking right. Just thoughts may, and often do, fail of producing just deeds; but just deeds are sure to get just thoughts. The clearest understanding can do little in purifying an impure heart, the strongest little in straightening a crooked one. You cannot reason or talk an Augean stable into cleanliness. A single day's work would make more progress in such a task than a century's words." - Julius Charles Hare (1795-1855) and his brother Augustus William Hare

"Since the generality of persons act from impulse, much more than form principle, men are neither so good nor so bad as we are apt to think them." - Julius Charles Hare (1795-1855) and his brother Augustus William Hare

"It is, most fundamentally, because moral judgments are universablizable that we can speak of moral thought as rational (to universalize is to give the reason); and their prescriptivity is very intimately connected with our freedom to form our own moral opinions (only those free to think and act need a prescriptive language)." - Richard M. Hare, fully Richard Mervyn Hare

"Learn to think in positive affirmations. Too often we think in negative affirmations." - Louise L. Hay

"Be charitable in your thoughts, in your speech and in your actions. Be charitable in your judgments, in your attitudes and in your prayers. Think charitably of your friends, your neighbors, your relatives and even your enemies. And if there be those whom you can help in a material way, do so in a quiet, friendly, neighborly way, as if it were the most command and everyday experience for you. Tongues of men and angels, gifts of prophecy and all mysteries and all knowledge are as nothing without charity." - Patrick Joseph Hayes