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It appears that the anesthetic quote is actually much older: Booker T Washington most likely wrote it before Bellamy Brooks or Frank Leahy quoted him. (I have no concrete source for that either, though). Frank Leahy attributes this quote to Knute Rockne in his book, "Notre Dame Football - The T Formation".


  • Egotism is the anesthetic given by a kindly nature to relieve the pain of being a damn fool.
  • When all is summed up, a man never speaks of himself without loss; his accusations of himself are always believed, his praises never.
  • The more you speak of yourself, the more you are likely to lie.
  • What hypocrites we seem to be whenever we talk of ourselves! Our words sound so humble, while our hearts are so proud.
  • Do you wish men to speak well of you? Then never speak well of yourself.
  • He who thinks he can find in himself the means of doing without others is much mistaken; but he who thinks that others cannot do without him is still more mistaken.
  • Egotism is the anaesthetic that dulls the pains of stupidity.

Inadequately sourced[edit]

  • Ego - A human survival mechanism. To exist is its prime directive. As humans we are designed to exist in this physical reality with its parameters. The ego is the governing force of this manifestation. It is extremely powerful within the material realm. To all intents and purposes this reality is “everything” to the ego, and as such it is most comfortable with the one reality mentality.
  • Paul Manuel, in A Grain of Sand: Why we're here, and who we are. (2015) p. 2