Great Throughts Treasury

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


"People create their own realities by what they think and believe. The new Being is destined to become the essence of boundless freedom and beauty." - Moira Timms

"Despotism may be able to do without faith, but freedom cannot." -

"All man’s efforts, all his impulses to life, are only efforts to increase freedom. Wealth and poverty, fame and obscurity, power and subordination, strength and weakness, health and disease, culture and ignorance, work and leisure, repletion and hunger, virtue and vice, are only greater or lesser degrees of freedom." -

"A man having no freedom cannot be conceived of except as deprived of life." -

"Man’s actions proceed from his innate character and the motives acting upon him. What is conscience and the perception of right and wrong in actions that follows from the consciousness of freedom? That is a question for ethics." -

"Life is like the ocean, forever trying to wear away our narrow self-concepts, which compromise its freedom and vastness." - John Welwood

"Freedom springs from within, whether in a man or in a people. To remove disabilities and confer the franchise is not enough. Men must be enabled to grow if they are to exercise their rights with dignity and effect. For this reason the widening of the franchise in democratic countries has always been accompanied or followed by the development of popular education." - Basil Alfred Yeaxlee

"True freedom is freedom of the mind. Only a person whose mind is free from worrying can be considered truly free." -

"It is the responsibility of free men to trust and to celebrate what is constant - birth, struggle, and death are constant - and so is love, though we may not always think so - and to apprehend the nature of change, to be able and willing to change. I speak of change not on the surface but in the depths - change in the sense of renewal. But renewal becomes impossible if one supposes things to be constant that are not - safety, for example, or money or power. One clings then to chimeras, but which one can only be betrayed, and the entire hope - the entire possibility - of freedom disappears." -

"Security is never absolute... The government of a free people must take certain chances for the sake of maintaining freedom which the government of a police state avoids because it holds freedom to be of no value." - Alan Barth

"In the last analysis, our only freedom is the freedom to discipline ourselves." - Bernard Baruch, fully Bernard Mannes Baruch

"Man's freedom is his inner worth; His guilt alone can rob him of it." - M. Beer

"Liberty is being free, that which leads to freedom. There is no other." - Ernest Benn, fully Sir Ernest John Pickstone Benn, 2nd Baronet

"Man is not only of this world but of another world; not only of necessity, but of freedom." -

"The cause of Freedom and the cause of Peace are bound together." - Léon Blum, fully André Léon Blum

"Governments which suppress freedom of speech... act like children who shut their eyes in order not to be seen." - Ludwig Börne, fully Karl Ludwig Börne

"All theory is against the freedom of the will; all experience for it." - James Boswell

"Intellectually, as well as politically, the direction of all true progress is toward greater freedom, and long an endless succession of ideas." - Christian Nestell Bovee

"Intellectually, as well as politically, the direction of all true progress is toward greater freedom, and along an endless succession of ideas." - John Christian Bovee

"The cause of freedom is the cause of God." - Samuel Bowles III

"The first steps toward spiritual freedom from the worldly bonds and fetters are to control one's mind, to stop idle talk, and to be somewhat pensive." -

"Political freedom is, or ought to be, the best guaranty for the safety and continuance of spiritual, mental, and civil freedom. It is the combination of numbers to secure the liberty to each one." - Edward Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton, fully Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, Lord Lytton

"If we wish to free ourselves from enslavement, we must choose freedom and the responsibility this entails." -

"Freedom is not free. Shaping and preserving society necessarily involves personal commitment, costly risk and constant effort; the cultivation of civil liberty can be no more passive than the cultivation of a farm. A man can inherit the land on which he lives, he can even inherit the first crop of produce after he takes over from those who came before him. But then if he stops, everything stops, and begins to crumble. Nothing grows, nothing ripe and rewarding comes to him, unless he plows, plants and tends the soil and unless he keeps it fertile year after year with the chemistry of effort and forethought." - Edmond Cahn, fully Edmond Nathaniel Cahn

"Freedom of expression is the matrix, the indispensable condition, of nearly every other form of freedom." -

"All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom; justice; honor; duty; mercy; hope." -

"Hope - of all ills that men endure, the only cheap and universal cure; the captive's freedom, and the sick man's health, the lover's victory, and the beggar's wealth." - Robert Crowley, also Robertus Croleus, Roberto Croleo, Robart Crowleye, Robarte Crole, and Crule

"You can only protect your liberties in this world by protecting the other man’s freedom. You can only be free if I am free." - Clarence Darrow, fully Clarence Seward Darrow

"It is in education more than anywhere else that we have sincerely striven to carry into execution "the Great American Dream": the vision of a longer and fuller life for the ordinary man, a life of widened freedom, of equal opportunity for each to make of himself all that he is capable of becoming." - John Dewey

"The fundamental defect in the present state of democracy is the assumption that political and economic freedom can be achieved without first freeing the mind. Freedom of mind is not something that spontaneously happens. It is not achieved by mere absence of obvious restraints. It is a product of constant unremitting nurture of right habits of observation and reflection." - John Dewey

"We cannot have jobs and opportunities if we surrender our freedom to Government control... We can have both opportunity and security within the framework of a free society." - John Dewey

"Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong." - John Diefenbaker, fully John George Diefenbaker

"It is not easy to be free men, for to be free you must afford freedom to your neighbor, regardless of race, color, creed or national origin, and that sometimes, for some, is very difficult." - Helen Gahagan Douglas

"All education is a continuous dialogue of questions and answers that pursue every problem to the horizon. That is the essence of academic freedom." -

"Ideas are indeed the most dangerous weapons in the world. Our ideas of freedom are the most powerful political weapons man has ever forged." -

"The most important aspect of freedom of speech is freedom to learn. All education is a continuous dialogue - questions and answers that pursue every problem to the horizon. That is the essence of academic freedom." -

"I do not at all believe in human freedom in the philosophical sense. Everybody acts not only under external compulsion but also in accordance with inner necessity." - Albert Einstein

"O Youth: Do you know that yours is not the first generation to yearn for a life of beauty and freedom? Do you know that all your ancestors felt as you do - and fell victim to trouble and hatred? Do you know, also, that your fervent wishes can only find fulfillment if you succeed in attaining love and understanding of men, and animals, and plants, and stars, so that every joy becomes your joy and every pain your pain? Open your eyes, your heart, your hands, and avoid the poison your forebears so greedily sucked in from History. Then will all the earth be your fatherland, and all your work and effort spread forth blessings." - Albert Einstein

"Those who rage today against the ideals of reason and of individual freedom, and seek to impose an insensate state of slavery by means of brutal force, rightly see in the Jews irreconcilable opponents." - Albert Einstein

"With the seizing of the means of production by society, production of commodities is done away with, and, simultaneously, the mastery of the product over the producer. Anarchy in social production is replaced by plan-conforming, conscious organization. The struggle for individual existence disappears... Only from that time will man himself, with full consciousness, make his own history - only from that time will the social causes set in movement by him have, in the main and in a constantly growing measure, the results intended by him. It is the ascent of man from the kingdom of necessity to the kingdom of freedom." - Friedrich Engels

"Freedom is obtained not by enjoyment of what is desired but by controlling desire itself." -

"Happiness is not in strength, or wealth, or power, or all three. It lies in ourselves, in true freedom, in the conquest of every ignoble fear, in perfect self-government, in a power of contentment and peace, and the even flow of life, even in poverty, exile, disease, and the very valley of the shadow of death." -

"Truth is s thing immortal and perpetual, and it gives to us a beauty that fades not away in time, nor does it take away the freedom of speech which proceeds from justice; but it gives to us the knowledge of what is just and lawful, separating from them the unjust and refuting them." -

"Democracy is always a beckoning goal, not a safe harbor. For freedom is an unremitting endeavor, never a final achievement." - Felix Frankfurter

"Freedom of the press is not an end in itself but a means to the end of a free society." - Felix Frankfurter

"Without freedom of thought, there can be no such thing as wisdom; and no such thing as public liberty without freedom of speech; which is the right of every man as far as by it he does not hurt or control the right of another; and this is the only check it ought to suffer and the only bounds it ought to know... Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freedom of speech, a thing terrible to traitors." - Benjamin Franklin

"A society that puts equality... ahead of freedom will end up with neither equality nor freedom." -

"Human history begins with man's act of disobedience which is at the same time the beginning of his freedom and development of his reason." -

"Love is based on equality and freedom." -