Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Trial

"Reckon any matter of trial to thee among thy gains." - Thomas Adam

"The hardest trial of the heart is, whether it can bear a rival's failure without triumph." -

"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired, and success achieved." - Garrison Keillor, fully Gary Edward "Garrison" Keillor

"We are not immortal, but our acts are... The question is not why we exist but whether we deserve to exist as supposedly rational beings if we act like conquerors rather than caring beings willing to share the planet with all those who are less powerful, and to act with restraint in respecting the needs of others and all life to come. As a species, we are on trial to see whether rationality was an advance or a tragic mistake." - Michael McCloskey

"Great trials seem to be necessary preparation for great duties. It would seem that the more important the enterprise, the more severe the trial to which the agent is subjected in his preparation." - Edward Thomson

"The best people need afflictions for trial of their virtue. How can we exercise the grace of contentment, if all things succeed well; or that of forgiveness, if we have no enemies?" - John Tillotson, Archbishop of Canterbury

"One is never more on trial than in the moment of excessive good fortune." - Lew Wallace

"Every failure is a step to success; every detection of what is false directs us toward what is true; every trial exhausts some tempting form of error. Not only so, but scarcely any attempt is entirely a failure; scarcely any theory, is the result of steady thought, is altogether false; no tempting form of error is without some latent charm derived from truth." - William Whewell

"It is the easiest thing in the world for us to obey God when He command us to do what we like, and to trust Him when the path is all sunshine. The real victory of faith is to trust God in the dark, and through the dark. Let us be assured of this, that if the lesson and the rod are of His appointing, and that His all-wise love has engineered the deep tunnel of trial on the heavenward road, He will never desert us during the discipline. The vital thing for us is not to deny and desert Him." - Theodore Cuyler, fully Theodore Ledyard Cuyler

"Whatever humans have learned had to be learned as a consequence only of trial and error experience. Humans have learned only through mistakes." - Buckminster Fuller, fully Richard Buckminster "Bucky" Fuller

"Nations like men, can be healthy and happy, though comparatively poor... Wealth is a means to an end, not the end itself. As a synonym for health and happiness, it has had a fair trial and failed dismally." - John Galsworthy

"The experience of life nearly always works toward the confirmation of faith. It is the total significance of life that it reveals God to man; and life only can do this; neither thought, nor demonstration, nor miracle, but only life, weaving its threads of daily toil and trial and joy into a pattern on which, at last, is inscribed the name of "God."" - Theodore T. Munger

"Silence is the highest wisdom of a fool as speech is the greatest trial of a wise man. If thou wouldst be known as wise, let thy words show thee so; if thou doubt thy words, let thy silence feign thee so. It is not a greater point of wisdom to discover knowledge than to hide ignorance." - Francis Quarles

"O Death, what art thou? a stern and silent usher, leading to the judgment for Eternity, after the trial scene of Time." -

"Suffering was a curse from which man fled, not it becomes a purification of the soul, a sacred trial sent by Eternal Love, a divine dispensation meant to sanctify and ennoble us, an acceptable aid to faith, a strange initiation into happiness." - Henri Frédéric Amiel

"He who unreservedly accepts whatever God may give him in this world – humiliation, trouble, and trial from within or from without – has made a great step towards self-victory; he will not dread praise or censure, he will not be sensitive; or if he finds himself wincing, he will deal so cavalierly with his sensitiveness that it will soon die away. Such full resignation and unfeigned acquiescence is true liberty, and hence arises perfect simplicity." -

"In the Bible the word “wicked” really means “bewitched” or “under a spell.” The Judgment is not a great trial to take place at the end of time; it is a process that goes on every day." - Emmet Fox

"The truth of God has to run the gauntlet of all other truths. It is on trial by them and they on trial by it. Our final opinion about God can be settled only after all the truths have straightened themselves out together." - William James

"The great enemy of the soul is not trial but sadness, which is the bleeding wound of self-love." - Francis Xavier Lasance, fully The Reverend Francis Xavier Lasance

"A man is never so on trial as in the moment of excessive good fortune." -

"Trials, temptations, disappointments -- all these are helps instead of hindrances, if one uses them rightly. They not only test the fibre of a character, but strengthen it. Every conquered temptation represents a new fund of moral energy. Every trial endured and weathered in the right spirit makes a soul nobler and stronger than it was before." - James Buckham

"Adversity is the trial of principle. Without it, a man hardly knows whether he is honest or not." - Henry Fielding

"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired, and success achieved." - Helen Keller. aka Helen Adams Keller

"Abundance of money is a trial for a man." - Moroccan Proverbs

"A man who has no office to go to - I don't care who he is - is a trial of which you can have no conception." - George Bernard Shaw

"Taste is not only a part and an index of morality - it is the only morality. The first, and last, and closest trial question to any living creature is, “What do you like?” Tell me what you like, an I’ll tell you what you are." - John Ruskin

"The... closest trial question to any living creature is, "What do you like?" Tell me what you like, and I'll tell you what you are." - John Ruskin

"The principle of private property has never yet had a fair trial in any country." - John Stuart Mill

"Extraordinary afflictions are not always the punishment of extraordinary sins, but sometimes the trial of extraordinary graces. Sanctified afflictions are spiritual promotions." - Matthew Henry

"The feeling that "I am enough" does not mean that I have nothing to learn, nothing further to achieve, and nowhere to grow to. It means I accept myself. It means I am not on trial in my own eyes. It means I value and respect myself. This is not an act of indulgence but of courage." - Nathaniel Branden

"For the most part, the human mind cannot attain to self-knowledge otherwise than by making trial of its powers through temptation, by some kind of experimental and not merely verbal self-interrogation." -

"He who unreservedly accepts whatever God may give him in this world – humiliation, trouble, and trial from within or from without – has made a great step towards self-victory; he will not dread praise or censure, he will not be sensitive; or if he finds himself wincing, he will deal so cavalierly with his sensitiveness that it will soon die away. Such full resignation and unfeigned acquiescence is true liberty, and hence arises perfect simplicity." - François Fénelon, fully Francois de Salignac de la Mothe-Fénelon

"The one who will be found in trial capable of great acts of love is ever the one who is always doing considerate small ones. " -

"History and experience tell us that moral progress comes not in comfortable and complacent times, but out of trial and confusion." - Gerald Ford, fully Gerald Rudolph "Jerry" Ford, Jr., Orig. name Leslie Lynch King, Jr.

"Then self-consciousness arose and gave us distance on our world. We needed that distance in order to make decisions and strategies, in order to measure, judge and to monitor our judgments. With the emergence of free-will, the fall out of the Garden of Eden, the second movement began -- the lonely and heroic journey of the ego. Nowadays, yearning to reclaim a sense of wholeness, some of us tend to disparage that movement of separation from nature, but it brought us great gains for which we can be grateful. The distanced and observing eye brought us tools of science, and a priceless view of the vast, orderly intricacy of our world. The recognition of our individuality brought us trial by jury and the Bill of Rights. " - Joanna Macy, fully Joanna Rogers Macy

"The hardest trial of the heart is, whether it can bear a rival's failure without triumph." - John Aiken or Aikin

"Virtue is nothing without the trial of temptation, for there is no conflict without an enemy, no victory without strife." - Pope Leo I, aka Pope Leo The Great, Pope Saint Leo I NULL

"Preparation is the be-all of good trial work. Everything else-felicity of expression, improvisational brilliance-is a satellite around the sun. Thorough preparation is that sun." - Louis Nizer

"O Death, what art thou? a stern and silent usher, leading to the judgment for Eternity, after the trial scene of Time." - Martin Tupper, fully Martin Farquhar Tupper

"Science reveals the possibility of achieving all good, and sets mortals at work to discover what God has already done; but distrust of one's ability to gain the goodness desired and to bring out better and higher results, often hampers the trial of one's wings and ensures failure at the outset." - Mary Baker Eddy

"I believe there is no philosophical high-road in science, with epistemological signposts. No, we are in a jungle and find our way by trial and error, building our road behind us as we proceed. " - Max Born

"Good merit shall be stored for you for your good thoughts; what is in store for me is one who waits his trial and proves his innocence. Farewell." - Musonius, fully Gaius Musonnius Rufus NULL

"If we were brought to trial for the crimes we have committed against ourselves, few would escape the gallows." - Paul Eldridge

"Let us hold our discussion together in our own persons, making trial of the truth and of ourselves." - Protagoras NULL

"He who flees from trial confesses his guilt." - Publius Syrus

"There are no mistakes, only lessons. Growth is a process of trial and error: experimentation. The 'failed' experiments are as much a part of the process as the experiment that ultimately 'works.'" - Richard and Greta Smolowe

"Modern poets talk against business, poor things, but all of us write for money. Beginners are subjected to trial by market. So dawn goes down to day. Nothing gold can stay." - Robert Frost

"The Trial By Existence - Even the bravest that are slain Shall not dissemble their surprise On waking to find valor reign, Even as on earth, in paradise; And where they sought without the sword Wide fields of asphodel fore’er, To find that the utmost reward Of daring should be still to dare. The light of heaven falls whole and white And is not shattered into dyes, The light for ever is morning light; The hills are verdured pasture-wise; The angel hosts with freshness go, And seek with laughter what to brave;— And binding all is the hushed snow Of the far-distant breaking wave. And from a cliff-top is proclaimed The gathering of the souls for birth, The trial by existence named, The obscuration upon earth. And the slant spirits trooping by In streams and cross- and counter-streams Can but give ear to that sweet cry For its suggestion of what dreams! And the more loitering are turned To view once more the sacrifice Of those who for some good discerned Will gladly give up paradise. And a white shimmering concourse rolls Toward the throne to witness there The speeding of devoted souls Which God makes his especial care. And none are taken but who will, Having first heard the life read out That opens earthward, good and ill, Beyond the shadow of a doubt; And very beautifully God limns, And tenderly, life’s little dream, But naught extenuates or dims, Setting the thing that is supreme. Nor is there wanting in the press Some spirit to stand simply forth, Heroic in its nakedness, Against the uttermost of earth. The tale of earth’s unhonored things Sounds nobler there than ’neath the sun; And the mind whirls and the heart sings, And a shout greets the daring one. But always God speaks at the end: ’One thought in agony of strife The bravest would have by for friend, The memory that he chose the life; But the pure fate to which you go Admits no memory of choice, Or the woe were not earthly woe To which you give the assenting voice.’ And so the choice must be again, But the last choice is still the same; And the awe passes wonder then, And a hush falls for all acclaim. And God has taken a flower of gold And broken it, and used therefrom The mystic link to bind and hold Spirit to matter till death come. ‘Tis of the essence of life here, Though we choose greatly, still to lack The lasting memory at all clear, That life has for us on the wrack Nothing but what we somehow chose; Thus are we wholly stripped of pride In the pain that has but one close, Bearing it crushed and mystified." - Robert Frost

"Remember that every government service, every offer of government - financed security, is paid for in the loss of personal freedom... In the days to come, whenever a voice is raised telling you to let the government do it, analyze very carefully to see whether the suggested service is worth the personal freedom which you must forgo in return for such service." - Ronald Reagan, fully Ronald Wilson Reagan

"The United States has much to offer the third world war." - Ronald Reagan, fully Ronald Wilson Reagan