“Weakness of attitude becomes weakness of character.”
“I never think of the future. It comes soon enough.”
“The eternal mystery of the world is its comprehensibility.”
“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”
“Great spirits have often encountered violent opposition from weak minds.”
“Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen.”
“The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education.”
“Technological progress is like an ax in the hands of a pathological criminal.”
“Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding.”
“We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”
“Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school.”
Nothing will benefit human health and increase the chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.
The ideals which have lighted my way, and time after time have given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been Kindness, Beauty, and Truth. The trite subjects of human efforts, possessions, outward success, luxury have always seemed to me contemptible.
“Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the universe.”
“In order to form an immaculate member of a flock of sheep one must, above all, be a sheep.”
“The fear of death is the most unjustified of all fears, for there’s no risk of accident for someone who’s dead.”
It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.
“Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism — how passionately I hate them!”
“Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence.”
“The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.”
Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions.
“A man’s ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.”
“The further the spiritual evolution of mankind advances, the more certain it seems to me that the path to genuine religiosity does not lie through the fear of life, and the fear of death, and blind faith, but through striving after rational knowledge.”
“Now he has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me. That means nothing. People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.”
“…one of the strongest motives that lead men to art and science is escape from everyday life with its painful crudity and hopeless dreariness, from the fetters of one’s own ever-shifting desires. A finely tempered nature longs to escape from the personal life into the world of objective perception and thought.”
“He who joyfully marches to music rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away with at once. Heroism at command, how violently I hate all this, how despicable and ignoble war is; I would rather be torn to shreds than be a part of so base an action. It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder.”
“A human being is a part of a whole, called by us _universe_, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest… a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”