Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes


"Let us give Nature a chance; she knows her business better than we do." - Michel de Montaigne, fully Lord Michel Eyquem de Montaigne

"Those who have but little business to attend to, are great talkers. The less men think, the more they talk." - Baron de Montesquieu, fully Charles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de La Brède et de Montesquieu

"Wherever religion is a business, there will business be a religion." -

"It is very sad for a man to make himself servant to a thing, his manhood all taken out of him by the hydraulic pressure of excessive business. I should not like to be merely a great doctor, a great lawyer, a great minister, a great politician - I should like to be also something of a man." - Joseph Parker

"Business is founded on vision and confidence; success on industry and cooperation." - John Henry Patterson

"In my life of professional teaching, I have never endeavored to make young men more efficient; I have tried to make them more interesting. If one is interested, one is usually interesting. The business of a teacher is not to supply information, it is to raise a thirst. I like to hang pictures on the walls of the mind, I like to make it possible for a man to live with himself, so that he will not be bored with himself. For my own part, I live everyday as if this were the first day I had ever seen and the last I were going to see." - William Lyon Phelps

"The greatest business of a man is to improve his mind and govern his manners; all other projects and pursuits, whether in our power to compass or not, are only amusements." - Pliny the Younger, full name Casus Plinius Caecilius Secundus, born Gaius Caecilius or Gaius Caecilius Cilo NULL

"The business of psychology is to tell us what actually goes on in the mind. It cannot possibly tell us whether the beliefs are true or false." - Hastings Rashdall

"We're too disease-conscious. We read that one out of three dies of this, one out of five dies of that. We should accept the fact that one out of one dies of something - and get on with the business of living." -

"The question is, whether, like the Divine Child I the temple, we are turning knowledge into wisdom, and whether, understanding more of the mysteries of life, we are feeling more of its sacred law; and whether, having left behind the priests and the scribes and the doctors and the fathers, we are about our Father’s business, and becoming wise to God." -

"Every one has time if he likes. Business runs after nobody: people cling to it of their own free will and think that to be busy is a proof of happiness." -

"The science of business is the science of service and he profits most who serves best." - Arthur Frederick Sheldon

"It is the close observation of little things which is the secret of success in business, in art, in science, and in every pursuit in life. Human knowledge is but an accumulation of small facts, made by successive generations of men, the little bits of knowledge and experience carefully treasured up and growing at length into a mighty pyramid." - Samuel Smiles

"We know nothing of to-morrow; our business is to be good and happy to-day." - Sydney Smith

"Meanwhile no such thing as internal affairs remains on our crowded Earth. Mankind's salvation lies exclusively in everyone's making everything his business." -

"The topic of unselfish love has been placed on the agenda of history and is about to become its main business." -

"It is the little things in life that are the sublime things. It is the minor parts of the great drama which make up the whole. The handclasp, the smile, the words of confidence or encouragement; these are the strength and bulwark of society, business, religion - and home life. Without them, there would be no trust; without trust, our world would collapse." - John Randolph Stidman

"Lust is a captivity of the reason and an enraging of the passions. It hinders business and distracts counsel. It sins against the body and weakens the soul." - Jeremy Taylor

"I never varied from the managerial rule that the worst possible thing we could do was to lie dead in the water of any problem. Solve it. Solve it quickly, solve it right or wrong. If you solved it wrong, it would come back and slap you in the face and then you could solve it right. Lying dead in the water and doing nothing is a comfortable alternative because it is without risk, but it is an absolutely fatal way to manage a business." -

"Curiosity is as much the parent of attention as attention is of memory; therefore the first business of a teacher - first not only in point of time, but of importance - should be to excite not merely a general curiosity on the subject of the study, but a particular curiosity on particular points in that subject. To teach one who has no curiosity to learn is to sow a field without ploughing it." - Richard Whately

"The business of the American teacher is to liberate American citizens to think apart and act together." - Stephen Samuel Wise

"When two men in a business always agree, one of them is unnecessary." - William Wrigley, Jr.

"He that lives in perpetual suspicion lives the life of a sentinel never relieved, whose business is to look out for and expect an enemy, which is an evil not short of perishing by him." -

"Time is never more misspent than while we declaim against the want of it; all our actions are then tinctured with peevishness. The yoke of life is certainly the least oppressive when we carry it with good-humor; and in the shades of rural retirement, when we have once acquired a resolution to pass our hours with economy sorrowful lamentations on the subject of time misspent and business neglected never torture the mind." - Johann Georg Ritter von Zimmermann

"I must create a system or be enslaved by another man's. I will not reason and compare. My business is to create." - William Blake

"An optimist is a believer I the bet, and any man who believes that anything less than the best is the ultimate purpose of God, and so the ultimate possibility of God’s children, has no business to live upon the earth." - Phillips Brooks

"All animals, except man, know that the principal business of life is to enjoy it--and they do enjoy it as much as man and other circumstances will allow." - Samuel Butler

"For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin - real life. But here was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, or a debt to be paid. Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that this was my life. This perspective has helped me to see that there is no way to happiness. Happiness is the way. " - Alfred D'Souza

"The primary business of school is to train children to co-operative and mutually helpful living; to foster in them the consciousness of mutual interdependence." - John Dewey

"War is so cruel a business that it befits beasts and not men… so pestilential that it brings with it general blight upon morals, so iniquitous that is usually conducted by the worst bandits, so impious that it has no accord with Christ." - Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus, sometimes known as Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam

"A business devoted to service will have only one worry profits. They will be embarrassingly large." - Henry Ford

"I have always thought that one man of tolerable abilities may work great changes, and accomplish great affairs among mankind, if he first forms a good plan, and, cutting off all amusements or other employments that would divert his attention, makes the execution of that same plan his sole study and business." - Benjamin Franklin

"One instance of the innate and ineradicable inequality of men is their tendency to fall into two classes of leaders and followers. The latter constitute the vast majority; they stand in need of an authority which will make decisions for them and to which they for the most part offer an unqualified submission. This suggests that more care should be taken than hitherto to educate an upper stratum of men with independent minds, not open to intimidation and eager in the pursuit of truth, whose business it would be to give direction to the dependent masses." - Sigmund Freud, born Sigismund Schlomo Freud

"Not every age is an age of heroes. In order for there to be such larger-than-life figures among us, there must be great social causes, such as just wars or liberation movements that call for extraordinary leadership. Otherwise there are no heroic niches to be filled, and we look elsewhere – to business, sports, entertainment – for people to admire." - Robert W. Fuller, fully Robert Works Fuller

"A soldier is a man whose business it is to kill those who never offended him, and who are the innocent martyrs of other men’s iniquities. Whatever may become of the abstract question of the justifiableness of war, it seems impossible that the soldier should not be a depraved and unnatural thing." - William Godwin

"Punctuality is the soul of business." -

"Business has become, in this last half century, the most powerful institution on the planet. The dominant institution in any society needs to take responsibility for the whole." - Willis Harman

"Love and business and family and religion and art and patriotism are nothing but shadows of words when a man’s starving." - O. Henry, pen name for William Sydney Porter

"Caring is a powerful business advantage." - Scott Johnson, fully Scott Blaine Johnson

"It is a man’s proper business to seek happiness and avoid misery." - John Locke

"Business more than any other occupation is a continual dealing with the future; it is a continual calculation, an instinctive exercise in foresight." - Henry Robinson Luce

"Truly great companies maintain a set of core values and a core purpose that remain fixed while their business strategies and practices continually adapt to a changing world." - J.W. Marriott, Jr., fully John Willard "Bill" Marriott, Jr.

"The artist is not a reporter, but a Great Teacher. It is not his business to depict the world as it is, but as it ought to be." -

"The secret of business is to know something that nobody else knows." - Aristotle Onassis

"The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly; it is dearness only that gives everything its value. I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress and grow brave by reflection. 'Tis the business of little minds to shrink; but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death." - Thomas Paine

"[Bernard Law Montgomery] always gave the impression that he had nothing in the world to do except the business at hand. There were never any papers on his desk, there were never any interruptions; one almost had the feeling that here was an idle man, and that but for one’s own visit he would have been at a loss to fill up his time. Most remarkable of all, to myself, was that he actually listened to what I said." -

"In business, the chief focus is on profitability. Government, by contrast, has no simple bottom line but rather a vast array of interests and priorities, many of which exist in a state of tension or conflict. For that reason, decision making in government is vastly more complex." - Robert Edward Rubin, aka Eddy Rubin

"Diplomats make it their business to conceal the facts." -

"Business must be profitable if it is to continue to succeed, but the glory of business is to make it so successful that it may do things that are great chiefly because they ought to be done." -

"and invest them in the business of living in a manner that leads to the accomplishment of a full life of service." - Sol Roth