So long as there is death there will be sorrow, and so long as there is sorrow it can be no part of the duty of human beings to increase its amount, in spite of the fact that a few rare spirits know how to transmute it. ~ Bertrand Russell
To minimize suffering and to maximize security were natural and proper ends of society and Caesar. But then they became the only ends, somehow, and the only basis of law — a perversion. Inevitably, then, in seeking only them, we found only their opposites: maximum suffering and minimum security. ~ Walter M. Miller, Jr. (born 23 January 1923)
Almost all our misfortunes in life come from the wrong notions we have about the things that happen to us. To know men thoroughly, to judge events sanely is, therefore, a great step towards happiness. ~ Stendhal
There is no such thing as natural law, the expression is nothing more than a silly anachronism … There is no such thing as right, except when there is a law to forbid a certain thing under pain of punishment. Before law existed, the only natural thing was the strength of the lion, or the need of a creature who was cold or hungry, to put it in one word, need. ~ Stendhal
first proposed by InvisibleSun in a more abbreviated form of a different translation: "There is no such thing as "natural law": this expression is nothing but old nonsense. Prior to laws, what is natural is only the strength of the lion, or the need of the creature suffering from hunger or cold, in short, need."
I no longer find such pleasure in that preeminently goodsociety, of which I was once so fond. It seems to me that beneath a cloak of clever talk it proscribes all energy, all originality. If you are not a copy, people accuse you of being ill-mannered. And besides, good society usurps its privileges. It had in the past the privilege of judging what was proper, but now that it supposes itself to be attacked, it condemns not what is coarse and disagreeable without compensation, but what it thinks harmful to its interest.
A cultural inheritance may be acquired between dusk and dawn, and many have been so acquired. But the new "culture" was an inheritance of darkness, wherein "simpleton" meant the same thing as "citizen" meant the same thing as "slave." The monks waited. It mattered not at all to them that the knowledge they saved was useless, that much of it was not really knowledge now… empty of content, its subject matter long since gone. Still, such knowledge had a symbolic structure that was peculiar to itself, and at least the symbol-interplay could be observed. To observe the way a knowledge-system is knit together is to learn at least a minimum knowledge-of-knowledge, until someday — someday, or some century — an Integrator would come, and things would be fitted together again. So time mattered not at all. The Memorabilia was there, and it was given to them by duty to preserve, and preserve it they would if the darkness in the world lasted ten more centuries, or even ten thousand years...
He had never seen a "Fallout," and he hoped he'd never see one. A consistent description of the monster had not survived, but Francis had heard the legends. … Brother Francis visualized a Fallout as half-salamander, because, according to tradition, the thing was born in the Flame Deluge, and as half-incubus who despoiled virgins in their sleep, for, were not the monsters of the world still called "children of the Fallout"? That the demon was capable of inflicting all the woes which descended upon Job was recorded fact, if not an article of creed.
I return you many thanks for the honour you have done me; but Europe is not to be saved by any single man. England has saved herself by her exertions, and will, as I trust, save Europe by her example. ~ William Pitt the Younger (anniversary of death). This was Pitt's last speech in public.
4 Tamino 20:09, 17 January 2007 (UTC) A classic, and in a way appropriate given that it was his last public speech.
1 Kalki (talk · contributions) 23:59, 15 January 2011 (UTC) * 2 Kalki 20:37, 22 January 2007 (UTC) Out of the context of his times and circumstances (responding to a toast to him as "Savior of Europe") this can (somewhat ironically) seem a bit chauvinistic, but if this were to be used, I think it should begin at "Europe is not to be saved by any single man..."
Ignorance has been our king. Since the death of empire, he sits unchallenged on the throne of Man. His dynasty is age-old. His right to rule is now considered legitimate. Past sages have affirmed it. They did nothing to unseat him. Tomorrow, a new prince shall rule. Men of understanding, men of science shall stand behind his throne, and the universe will come to know his might. His name is Truth. His empire shall encompass the Earth.
We are finite creatures. Our lives are small and can only scientifically consider a small part of reality. What's common for us is just a sliver of what's available. We can only see so much of the electromagnetic spectrum. We can only delve so deep into extensions of space. Common sense applies to that which we can access. But common sense is just that. Common. If total sense is what we want, we should be prepared to accept that we shouldn't call infinity weird or strange. The results we've arrived at by accepting it are valid, true within the system we use to understand, measure, predict and order the universe. Perhaps the system still needs perfecting, but at the end of day, history continues to show us that the universe isn't strange. We are.