Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes


"To be of no church is dangerous. Religion, of which the rewards are distant and which is animated only by Faith and Hope, will glide by degrees out of the mind unless it be invigorated and reimpressed by external ordinances, by stated calls to worship, and the salutary influence of example." -

"People hardly ever make use of the freedom they have, for example, freedom of thought; instead they demand freedom of speech as a compensation." - Søren Kierkegaard, fully Søren Aabye Kierkegaard

"Men trust their eyes rather than their ears; the road by precept is long and tedious, by example short and effectual." -

"Example comes in by the eyes and ears, and slips insensibly into the heart, and so into the outward practice, by a kind of secret charm, transforming men’s minds and manners into his own likeness." - Daniel Cosgrove Waterland

"The first day of spring was once the time for taking the young virgins into the fields, there in dalliance to set an example in fertility for Nature to follow. Now we just set the clock an hour ahead and change the oil in the crankcase." - E. B. White, fully Elwyn Brooks White

"The world is full of paradox. For example, [in Buddhism] though no notion of a creator is entertained, great stress is laid upon the need for faith and piety. By faith is meant not trust in a benevolent diety avid for love, praise and obedience, but conviction that beyond the seeming reality misreported by our senses which is inherently unsatisfactory, lies a mystery which, when intuitively unsatisfactory, lies a mystery which, when intuitively perceived, will give our lives undreamed-of meaning and endow the most insignificant object with holiness and beauty." - John Blofeld, fully John Eaton Calthorpe Blofeld

"We who are charged with announcing the message of Christ need to learn the incomparable lesson that he taught us by his own example. He taught irst of all with his life, and only then did he preach." - Hélder Câmara, fully Dom Hélder Pessoa Câmara

"How good a parent you were is determined by your grandchildren. If I have not taught my children how to be good parents – principally by example – then I have not fulfilled my responsibility." - S. Truett Cathy

"Truett’s Rules: (1) It’s better to demonstrate than to dictate. If you set the example, you won’t need to set so many rules. (2) Fifty percent of the battle ends when you make up your mind." - S. Truett Cathy

"The prime role of a leader is to offer an example of courage and sacrifice." - Régis Debray, fully Jules Régis Debray

"Economic outlooks have replaced more traditional ways of understanding the world, religious, or political, for example." - Stephen A. Erickson

"We learn by example and by direct experience because there are real limits to the adequacy of verbal instruction." - Malcolm Gladwell

"America, settled by peoples of many regions, races, religions, colors, creeds and cultures, should by moral example, lead the way in helping “to make the world safe for differences.”" - Frank Porter Graham

"Virtues transcend time and culture (although their cultural expression may vary); justice and kindness, for example, will always and everywhere be virtues, regardless of how many people exhibit them." - Thomas Lickona, fully Thomas Edward Lickona

"The best way to teach our young people the meaning of our democratic freedoms is to demonstrate, by our own example, that we have mastered the 'three R's of citizenship' - Rights, Respects, and Responsibilities." - Earl James McGrath

"He who wants to set a good example must add a grain of foolishness to his virtue; then others can imitate and, at the same time, rise above the one being imitated – something which people love." - Friedrich Nietzsche, fully Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

"What has for centuries raised man above the beast is not the cudgel but an inward music: the irresistible power of unarmed truth, the powerful attraction of its example." - Boris Pasternak, fully Boris Leonidovich Pasternak

"Example, the surest method of instruction." -

"Women are always held responsible for the supposed evilness of sex – its’ not just Eve and Pandora. The prostitution laws are a contemporary example. Soliciting is an offence in thirty-four states, whereas customers are subject to legal action in only fourteen states. Moreover, prostitutes are jailed in virtually all states, and customers – not at all." -

"Example is not the main thing in influencing others; it is the only thing. One thing I know: the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve." - Albert Schweitzer

"Example is not the main thing in influencing others; it is the only thing." - Albert Schweitzer

"The best thing to give to your enemy is forgiveness; to an opponent, tolerance; to a friend, your heart; to your child, a good example; to a father, deference; to your mother, conduct that will make her proud of you; to yourself, respect; to all men, charity." - Francis Maitland Balfour

"People never improve unless they look to some standard or example higher or better than themselves." - Tryon Edwards

"Setting an example is not the main means of influencing another, it is the only means." - Albert Einstein

"The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function. One should, for example, be able to see that things are hopeless and yet be determined to make them otherwise." -

"The best thing to give to your enemy is forgiveness; to an opponent, tolerance; to a friend, your heart; to your child, a good example; to a father, deference; to your mother, conduct that will make her proud of you; to yourself, respect; to all men, charity." - Benjamin Franklin

"We live. We die. The best we can do is leave a worthwhile example for those who come after us." -

"Example is the best precept." - Aesop NULL

"Example is the best precept." -

"Example is the best precept." -

"We suppress the child’s curiosity (for example, there are questions one should not ask), and then when he lacks a natural interest in learning he is offered special coaching for his scholastic difficulties." - Alice Duer Miller

"All social and political problems are interwoven – that energy, for example, affects economics, which in turn affects health, which in turn, affects education, work, family life, and a thousand other things. The attempt to deal with neatly defined problems in isolation from one another… creates only confusion and disaster." - Alvin Toffler

"No kind action ever stops with itself. One kind action leads to another. Good example is followed. A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees. The greatest work that kindness does to others is that it makes them kind themselves." - Amelia Earhart, fully Amelia Mary Earhart

"Since things that are found in the soul are of three kinds - passions, faculties, states of character, virtue must be one of these. By passions I mean appetite, anger, fear, confidence, envy, joy, friendly feeling, hatred, longing, emulation, pity, and in general the feelings that are accompanied by pleasure or pain; by faculties the things in virtue of which we are said to be capable of feeling these, for example, of becoming angry or being pained or feeling pity; by states of character the things in virtue of which we stand well or badly with reference to the passions, for example, with reference to anger we stand badly if we feel it violently or too weakly, and well if we feel it moderately; and similarly with reference to the other passions. Now neither the virtues nor the vices are passions, because we are not called good or bad on the ground of our virtues and our vices, and because we are neither praised nor blamed for our passions (for the man who feels fear or anger is not praised, nor is the man who simply feels anger blamed, but the man who feels it in a certain way), but for our virtues and our vices we are praised or blamed." - Aristotle NULL

"We sometimes learn more from the sight of evil than from an example of good; and it is well to accustom ourselves to profit by the evil which is so common, while that which is good is so rare." - Blaise Pascal

"Nothing is so infectious as example." -

"I am very doubtful whether history shows us one example of a man who, having stepped outside traditional morality and attained power, has used that power benevolently." - C. S. Lewis, fully Clive Staples "C.S." Lewis, called "Jack" by his family

"The rule of life is to be found within yourself. Ask yourself constantly, "What is the right thing to do?" Beware of ever doing that which you are likely, sooner or later, to repent of having done. It is better to live in peace than in bitterness and strife. It is better to believe in your neighbors than to fear and distrust them. The superior man does not wrangle. He is firm but not quarrelsome. He is sociable but not clannish. The superior man sets a good example to his neighbors. He is considerate of their feelings and property. Consideration for others is the basis of a good life, and a good society. Feel kindly toward everyone. Be friendly and pleasant among yourselves. Be generous and fair." - Confucius, aka Kong Qiu, Zhongni, K'ung Fu-tzu or Kong Fuzi NULL

"Go before the people with your example, and be laborious in their affairs." - Confucius, aka Kong Qiu, Zhongni, K'ung Fu-tzu or Kong Fuzi NULL

"We learn by imitation; we teach by example." - Dan Millman, born Daniel Jay Millman

"Nothing is so contagious as example; never was there any considerable good or ill done that does not produce its like. We imitate good actions through emulation, and bad ones though a malignity in our nature, which shame conceals, and example sets at liberty." - François de La Rochefoucauld, François VI, Duc de La Rochefoucauld, Prince de Marcillac, Francois A. F. Rochefoucauld-Liancourt

"Example is the school of mankind, and they will learn at no other." - Edmund Burke

"The principle of heredity succession is universal; but the order has been variously established by convenience or caprice, by the spirit of national institutions, or by some partial example which was originally decided by fraud or violence." - Edward Gibbon

"He that gives good advice, builds with one hand; he that gives good counsel and example, builds with both; but he that gives good admonition and bad example, builds with one hand and pulls down with the other." - Francis Bacon

"In causes of life and death, judges ought (as far as the law permiteth) in justice to remember mercy; and to cast a severe eye upon the example, but a merciful eye upon the person." - Francis Bacon

"Every great example takes hold of us with the authority of a miracle, and says to us, "If ye had but faith, ye, also, could do the same things."" - Friedrich Heinrich Jacobi

"Life as a sum of ends has a right against abstract right. If for example it is only by stealing bread that the wolf can be kept from the door, the action is of course an encroachment on someone’s property, but it would be wrong to treat this action as an ordinary theft. To refuse to allow a man in jeopardy of his life to take such steps for self-preservation would be to stigmatize him as without rights, and since he would be deprived of his life, his freedom would be annulled altogether. Many diverse details have a bearing on the preservation of life, and when we have our eyes on the future we have to engage ourselves in these details. But the only thing that is necessary is to live now, the future is not absolute but ever exposed to accident. Hence it is only the necessity of the immediate present which can justify a wrong action, because not to do the action would in turn be to cause not to do the action would in turn be to commit an offense, indeed the most wrong of all offenses, namely the complete destruction of the embodiment of freedom." - Georg Hegel, fully Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

"The blossom cannot tell what becomes of its odor, and no man can tell what becomes of his influence and example, that roll away from him, and go beyond his ken on their perilous mission." - Henry Ward Beecher

"The experience of the ages that are past, the hopes of the ages that are yet to come, unite their voices in an appeal to us; they implore us to think more of the character of our people than of its vast numbers; to look upon our vast natural resources, not as tempters to ostentation and pride, but as a means to be converted, by the refining alchemy of education, into mental and spiritual treasures - and thus give to the world the example of a nation whose wisdom increases with prosperity, and whose virtues are equal to its power." - Horace Mann