Favorite Quotes #12011-09-07
Collected over the past 20 years.
Simplicity is the outward sign and symbol of depth of thought.
— Lin Yutang
Live a good life.
If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by.
If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them.
If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.
— Marcus Aurelius
Things are not as they appear to be, nor are they otherwise.
— The Lankavatara Sutra or Surangama Sutra
The opposite of the religious fanatic is not the fanatical atheist but the gentle cynic who cares not whether there is a god or not.
— Eric Hoffer
I asked him if he would come up with a few options. And he said, “No. I will solve your problem for you. And you will pay me. And you don’t have to use the solution. If you want options, go talk to other people. But I’ll solve your problem for you the best way I know how. And you use it or not. That’s up to you. You’re the client. But you pay me.” And there was a clarity about the relationship that was refreshing.
— Steve Jobs regarding working with designer Paul Rand on the NeXT logo
Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.
— Calvin Coolidge
Cynicism is a sorry kind of wisdom.
— Barack Obama
Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.’
— Isaac Asimov
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?
Because we don’t know when we will die, we get to think of life as an inexhaustible well. And yet everything happens only a certain number of times, and a very small number really. How many more times will you remember a certain afternoon of your childhood, an afternoon that is so deeply a part of your being that you can’t even conceive of your life without it? Perhaps four, or five times more? Perhaps? not even that. How many more times will you watch the full moon rise? Perhaps twenty. And yet it all seems limitless.
— Paul Bowles – The Sheltering Sky
It’s like the universe screams in your face, ‘Do you know what I am, how grand I am, how old I am? Can you even comprehend what I am? What are you, compared to me?’ And when you know enough science, you can just smile up at the universe and reply, ‘Dude, I am you.’
— “philhellenes” on YouTube
I sold [MicroSolutions] after 7 years and made enough money to take time off and have a whole lot of fun. Back then I can remember vividly people telling me how lucky I was to sell my business at the right time. Then when I took that money and started trading technology stocks that were in the areas that MicroSolutions focused on, I remember vividly being told how lucky I was to have expertise in such a hot area, as technology stocks started to trade up. Of course, no one wanted to comment on how lucky I was to spend time reading software manuals, or Cisco Router manuals, or sitting in my house testing and comparing new technologies, but that’s a topic for another blog post.
— Mark Cuban
You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.
— Winston Churchill
May the bridges I burn light the way.
— Marko Rakar, a Croatian data activist
(But used previously by others, including Bass Clef & Dylan on the TV show 90210)
European car companies build cars with the driver in mind.
Japanese car companies build cars with the car in mind.
American car companies build cars with themselves in mind.
On Going Dutch: “When you pay for just yourself, you usually get what you pay for.”
On Language: “Unless our whole conversation is to be in Spanish, don’t lead off with ‘hola’.”
On Lady Luck: “Be wary of a woman who only shows up when you are winning.”
On Pick-Up Lines: “There’s a time and place for them. The time is never. You can figure out the place on your own.”
— The Most Interesting Man in the World
(Produced by the marketing firm Euro RSCG for Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma Brewery.)
I like men who have a future and women who have a past.
— Oscar Wilde
I have little doubt that when St. George had killed the dragon he was heartily afraid of the princess.
— G.K. Chesterton
You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.
— Dr. Seuss
Life is simply shades of grey. War is the greyest conceivable shade.
(A commentor on James Altucher’s blog post “Name a Single War that was Worth It”.)
Remember: Write a wise saying, and your name will be remembered forever.
Things don’t have to change the world to be important.
— Steve Jobs