Thursday, February 22, 2007

Bertrand Russell Quotes

  • "No one gossips about other people's secret virtues."


  • "Mathematics, rightly viewed, possesses not only truth, but supreme beauty - a beauty cold and austere, like that of sculpture."


  • "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution."


  • "Science may set limits to knowledge, but should not set limits to imagination."


  • "Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom."


  • "A stupid man's report of what a clever man says can never be accurate, because he unconsciously translates what he hears into something he can understand."


  • "Everything is vague to a degree you do not realize till you have tried to make it precise."


  • "I think we ought always to entertain our opinions with some measure of doubt. I shouldn't wish people dogmatically to believe any philosophy, not even mine."


  • "If a man is offered a fact which goes against his instincts, he will scrutinize it closely, and unless the evidence is overwhelming, he will refuse to believe it. If, on the other hand, he is offered something which affords a reason for acting in accordance to his instincts, he will accept it even on the slightest evidence. The origin of myths is explained in this way."


  • "In all affairs it's a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted."


  • "Passive acceptance of the teacher's wisdom is easy to most boys and girls. It involves no effort of independent thought, and seems rational because the teacher knows more than his pupils; it is moreover the way to win the favour of the teacher unless he is a very exceptional man. Yet the habit of passive acceptance is a disastrous one in later life. It causes man to seek and to accept a leader, and to accept as a leader whoever is established in that position."


  • "Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric."


  • "The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time."


  • "Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom."


  • "Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones."

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