Purpose

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Purpose is a term having various meanings involving intentions, targets, aims, goals, and objects or results which are desired. Most involve conceptions of an individual's voluntary behavior or active awareness, and have had significant histories of involvement in religion, philosophy, science, technology, politics, war and forms of art and magic.

Quotes[edit]

A - F[edit]

  • The purpose and cause of the incarnation was that He might illuminate the world by His wisdom and excite it to the love of Himself.
    • Peter Abelard, as quoted in "The Abelardian Doctrine Of The Atonement" (1892), published in Doctrine and Development : University Sermons (1898) by Hastings Rashdall, p. 138.
  • All things have been given to us for a purpose, and an artist must feel this more intensely. All that happens to us, including our humiliations, our misfortunes, our embarrassments, all is given to us as raw material, as clay, so that we may shape our art.
    • Jorge Luis Borges, in Twenty Conversations with Borges, Including a Selection of Poems: Interviews by Roberto Alifano, 1981–1983 (1984)
  • If you have no aim, you need not worry about the means.
    • Fausto Cercignani in: Brian Morris, Simply Transcribed. Quotations from Writings by Fausto Cercignani, 2014, quote 48.
  • Unity of intent is on the lips of many, but in the hearts of few.
    • Fausto Cercignani in: Brian Morris, Simply Transcribed. Quotations from Writings by Fausto Cercignani, 2014, quote 44.
  • Plato defined a slave as one who accepts from another the purposes which control his conduct. This condition obtains even where there is no slavery in the legal sense. It is found wherever men are engaged in activity which is socially serviceable, but whose service they do not understand and have no personal interest in.
  • I would rather work with five people who really believe in what they are doing rather than five hundred who can't see the point.
  • There is only one valid definition of a business purpose: to create a customer.
  • History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or the timid. We must acquire proficiency in defense and display stamina in purpose. We must be willing, individually and as a Nation, to accept whatever sacrifices may be required of us. A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both.
  • The United States would seek more than the mere reduction or elimination of atomic materials for military purposes. It is not enough to take this weapon out of the hands of the soldiers. It must be put into the hands of those who will know how to strip its military casing and adapt it to the arts of peace.
  • Throughout America's adventure in free government, our basic purposes have been to keep the peace, to foster progress in human achievement, and to enhance liberty, dignity and integrity among peoples and among nations. To strive for less would be unworthy of a free and religious people.

G - L[edit]

  • Allow the President to invade a neighboring nation, whenever he shall deem it necessary to repel an invasion, and you allow him to do so, whenever he may choose to say he deems it necessary for such purpose, and you allow him to make war at pleasure. Study to see if you can fix any limit to his power in this respect, after having given him so much as you propose.
  • The purposes of the Almighty are perfect, and must prevail, though we erring mortals may fail to accurately perceive them in advance.
  • Men are not flattered by being shown that there has been a difference of purpose between the Almighty and them.

M - R[edit]

  • It was Richard Parker who calmed me down. It is the irony of this story that the one who scared me witless to start with was the very same who brought me peace, purpose, I dare say even wholeness.
  • Our purpose is to educate as well as to entertain. Painless preaching is as good a term as any for what we do. If you're going to come away from a party singing the lyrics of a song, it is better that you sing of self-pride like 'We're a Winner' instead of 'Do the Boo-ga-loo!'
    • Curtis Mayfield , as quoted in The Sociology of Rock (1978) by Simon Frith
  • We all engage in purposeful activity, and we judge ourselves and others in terms of success in achieving the purposes that we set before ourselves. Yet we accept as the final product of this purposeful activity a picture of the world from which purpose has been eliminated. Purpose is a meaningful concept in relation to our own consciousness of ourselves, but it is allowed no place in our understanding of the world of facts.
  • Lesslie Newbigin, in Foolishness to the Greeks : Gospel and Western Culture (1986)
  • The hypothesis will lead to our thinking of features of each Universe as purposed; and this will stand or fall with the hypothesis. Yet a purpose essentially involves growth, and so cannot be attributed to God. Still it will, according to the hypothesis, be less false to speak so than to represent God as purposeless.
    • Charles Sanders Peirce, on the God hypothesis, in "A Neglected Argument for the Reality of God" (1908), § II
  • There is no good reason why we should fear the future, but there is every reason why we should face it seriously, neither hiding from ourselves the gravity of the problems before us nor fearing to approach these problems with the unbending, unflinching purpose to solve them aright.
  • It is necessary that laws should be passed to prohibit the use of corporate funds directly or indirectly for political purposes; it is still more necessary that such laws should be thoroughly enforced. Corporate expenditures for political purposes, and especially such expenditures by public-service corporations, have supplied one of the principal sources of corruption in our political affairs.
  • It is particularly important that all moneys received or expended for campaign purposes should be publicly accounted for, not only after election, but before election as well. Political action must be made simpler, easier, and freer from confusion for every citizen.
    • Theodore Roosevelt, in a speech at Osawatomie, Kansas (31 August 1910), published in The New Nationalism (1910)

S - Z[edit]

  • There's no escaping reason, no denying purpose, for as we both know, without purpose we would not exist. It is purpose that created us, purpose that connects us, purpose that pulls us, that guides us, that drives us; it is purpose that defines us, purpose that binds us. We are here because of you, Mr. Anderson. We're here to take from you what you tried to take from us. Purpose.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

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