Great Throughts Treasury

This site is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Alan William Smolowe who gave birth to the creation of this database.


"Real knowledge never promoted either turbulence or unbelief; but its progress is the forerunner of liberality and enlightened toleration." -

"Belief and unbelief never follow men’s commands. Faith is a gift from God which man can neither give nor take away by promise of rewards or menaces of torture." - Thomas Hobbes

"Anxiety is a word of unbelief or unreasoning dread. We have no right to allow it. Full faith in God puts it to rest." - Horace Bushnell

"Faith always implies the disbelief of a lesser fact in favor of a greater. A little mind often sees the unbelief, without seeing the belief of a large one." - Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

"A refusal to believe that God loves us is the unbelief which destroys the soul." - Edward N. Kirk, fully Edward Needles Kirk

"With most people unbelief in one thing is founded upon blind belief in another." - Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

"A little knowledge leads the mind from God. Unripe thinkers use their learning to authenticate their doubts. While unbelief has its own dogma, more peremptory than the inquisitor's, patient meditation brings the scholar back to humbleness. He learns that the grandest truths appear slowly." - Robert Aris Willmott

"Throughout human history, progress has come through the men and women who dared to challenge the precepts and dogmas that curtailed freedoms. Freethinking (which includes skepticism, rationalism, unbelief, atheism, agnosticism, humanism and so forth) has made great and lasting contributions to human freedom, human rights, and human equality." - Gerald Alexander Larue

"It were better to have no opinion of God at all, than such an opinion as is unworthy of Him; for the one is unbelief, the other is contumely: and certainly superstition is the reproach of the Deity." - Francis Bacon

"Unbelief is blind." - John Milton

"Belief consists in accepting the affirmations of the soul; unbelief, in denying them." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Belief consists in accepting the affirmations of the soul; unbelief in denying them." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"There is but one thing without honor, smitten with eternal barrenness, inability to do or to be, and that is unbelief. He who believes nothing, who believes only the show of things, is not in relation with nature and fact at all." - Thomas Carlyle

"The fearful unbelief is unbelief in yourself." - Thomas Carlyle

"Alas! the fearful unbelief is unbelief in yourself." - Thomas Carlyle

"So I say that civilizations begin with religion and stoicism: they end with skepticism and unbelief, and the undisciplined pursuit of individual pleasure. A civilization is born stoic and dies epicurean." - Will Durant, fully William James "Will" Durant

"With most men, unbelief in one thing sprin" - Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

"There is no strength in unbelief. Even the unbelief of what is false is no source of might. It is the truth shining from behind that gives the strength to disbelieve" - George William McDonald

"It is on the acceptance or rejection of the theory of the Unity of all in Nature, in its ultimate Essence, that mainly rests the belief or unbelief in the existence around us of other conscious beings besides the Spirits of the Dead." - Helena Blavatsky, aka Helena Petrovna "H.P." Blavatsky or Madame Blavatsky, born Helena von Hahn

"To the timid heart, to the child of unbelief and dread, That leaneth on his own weak staff, and trusteth the sight of his eyes, The evil he feared shall come, for the soil is ready for the seed." - Martin Tupper, fully Martin Farquhar Tupper

"Faith makes all evil good to us, and all good better; unbelief makes all good evil, and all evil worse. Faith laughs at the shaking of the spear; unbelief trembles at the shaking of a leaf." - Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury

"Faith makes all evil good to us, and all good better; unbelief makes all good evil, and all evil worse. Faith laughs at the shaking of the spear; unbelief trembles at the shaking of a leaf, unbelief starves the soul; faith finds food in famine, and a table in the wilderness. In the greatest danger, faith says, "I have a great God." When outward strength is broken, faith rests on the promises. In the midst of sorrow, faith draws the sting out of every trouble, and takes out the bitterness from every affliction." - Richard Cecil

"All we have gained then by our unbelief is a life of doubt diversified by faith, for one of faith diversified by doubt: we called the chess-board white -- we call it black." - Robert Browning

"Beyond our ideas of right-doing and wrong-doing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass, the world is too full to talk about. Ideas, language, even the phrase ‘each other’ doesn’t make sense anymore." - Rumi, fully Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Rumi NULL

"Satan has no merit of his own to enter as plea for vengeance." - Stephen Charnock

"It was from an old friend who . thought he was dying. Anyway, he said, Life and death issues don't come along that often, thank God, so don't treat everything like its life or death. Go easier." - Thomas Arnold

"The most unhappy of all men is the man who cannot tell what he is going to do, who has got no work cut-out for him in the world, and does not go into it. For work is the grand cure of all the maladies and miseries that ever beset mankind,honest work, which you intend getting done." - Thomas Carlyle

"A Divine Image - Cruelty has a human heart, And Jealousy a human face; Terror the human form divine, And Secrecy the human dress. The human dress is forgèd iron, The human form a fiery forge, The human face a furnace seal’d, The human heart its hungry gorge. " - William Blake

"Fiery the angels rose, and as they rose deep thunder roll'd around their shores: indignant burning with the fires of orc." - William Blake