Caution

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In the same manner as we are cautioned by religion to show our faith by our works we may very properly apply the principle to philosophy, and judge of it by its works… ~ Francis Bacon

Caution may refer to a quality of careful attention to the probable effects of actions, or to a precautionary statement describing a potential hazards.

Quotes[edit]

Walk a single path, becoming neither cocky with victory nor broken with defeat, without forgetting caution when all is quiet or becoming frightened when danger threatens. ~ Jigoro Kano
The truth. It is a beautiful and terrible thing, and should therefore be treated with great caution. ~ J. K. Rowling
  • If you wish to succeed in life, make perseverance your bosom friend, experience your wise counselor, caution your elder brother, and hope your guardian genius.
  • In the same manner as we are cautioned by religion to show our faith by our works we may very properly apply the principle to philosophy, and judge of it by its works; accounting that to be futile which is unproductive, and still more so, if instead of grapes and olives it yield but the thistle and thorns of dispute and contention.
  • Creative risk taking is essential to success in any goal where the stakes are high. Thoughtless risks are destructive, of course, but perhaps even more wasteful is thoughtless caution which prompts inaction and promotes failure to seize opportunity.
  • Thoughtless risks are destructive, of course, but perhaps even more wasteful is thoughtless caution which prompts inaction and promotes failure to seize opportunity.
    • Gary Ryan Blair in: Peter Brill and David Debin "Finding Your J Spot: Joy in midlife and beyond", p.132.
  • When once — which every body must be — you are convinced of the wickedness and deceit of men, it is impossible to preserve untainted your own innocence of heart. Experience will prove the depravity of mankind, and the conviction of it only serves to create distrust, suspicion — caution — and sometimes causelessly.
    • Frances Burney, in her journal entry for 17 November 1768, in The Early Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney, Vol. 1, p. 47
  • Wives? she asked, interrupting him. For a moment, he had assumed she was tuning to the novel. Then he saw her waiting, suspicious eyes, so he replied cautiously, "None active," as if wives were volcanoes.
  • The resentment of the weak does not spring from any injustice done to them but from the sense of inadequacy and impotence. We cannot win the weak by sharing our wealth with them. They feel our generosity as oppression. St. Vincent De Paul cautioned his disciples to deport themselves so that the poor "will forgive them the bread you give them."
    • Eric Hoffer, in The Ordeal of Change (1963), Ch. 2: "The Awakening of Asia"
  • Walk a single path, becoming neither cocky with victory nor broken with defeat, without forgetting caution when all is quiet or becoming frightened when danger threatens.
  • Scars fade with time. And the ones that never go away, well, they build character, maturity, caution.
    • Erin McCarthy in:The Pregnancy Test, Kensington Publishing Corp., 1 October 2005, p.240.
  • Our merciful Father has no pleasure in the sufferings of His children; He chastens them in love; He never inflicts a stroke He could safely spare; He inflicts it to purify as well as to punish, to caution as well as to cure, to improve as well as to chastise.
    • Hannah More, as quoted in Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895) by Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, p. 568.
  • A rat race is for rats. We're not rats. We're human beings. Reject the insidious pressures in society that would blunt your critical faculties to all that is happening around you, that would caution silence in the face of injustice lest you jeopardise your chances of promotion and self-advancement.
  • Although our "gentle air" cannot improve the way hate and envy look, it does seem not to encourage firmness and decision. All is compromise; caution and refinement are everywhere. Everything has to "make a good impression" — whether or not it is any good: the impression is the main thing.
    • Arnold Schoenberg, in "About Music Criticism" (1909), in Style and Idea (1985), p. 196.
  • Erring on the side of over-caution is costly, and so is erring on the side of under-caution, though for a given choice, one might be costlier than the other.
  • "It's wrong to profit from the misfortune of others." I ask my students whether they'd support a law against doing so. But I caution them with some examples. An orthopedist profits from your misfortune of having broken your leg skiing. When there's news of a pending ice storm, I doubt whether it saddens the hearts of those in the collision repair business. I also tell my students that I profit from their misfortune — their ignorance of economic theory.
  • Your spiritual teachers caution you against enquiry — tell you not to read certain books; not to listen to certain people; to beware of profane learning; to submit your reason, and to receive their doctrines for truths. Such advice renders them suspicious counsellors. By their own creed you hold your reason from their God. Go! ask them why he gave it.
    • Frances Wright, in A Course of Popular Lectures (1829), Lecture III: Of the more Important Divisions and Essential Parts of Knowledge

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