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Meditation 251
Quotations XXII

"I hate quotations, tell me what you know." Ralph Waldo Emerson.

But as some people do like quotations and think they can be useful in succinctly communicating an opinion, we will publish a selection occasionally, mostly but not entirely relevant. This is the twenty-second in an ongoing series.

  1. Kill one man and you are a murderer. Kill millions and you are a conqueror. Kill all and you are God. Jean Rostand

  2. God has always been hard on the poor. Jean Paul Marat

  3. It is easy to ask the ulimate questions - it saves you bothering with the immediate ones. John Osborne

  4. Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely. That unalterable rule applies both to God and man. John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton

  5. The truth cannot be asserted without denouncing the falsehood. Leslie Stephen

  6. Whomsoever you follow, howsoever great, see to it that you follow the spirit of the master and not imitate him mechanically. Mohandas Ghandi

  7. Scientific education and religious education are incompatible. The clergy have ceased to interfere with education at the advanced state, with which I am directly concerned, but they have still got control of that of children. This means that the children have to learn about Adam and Noah instead of about evolution; about David who killed Goliath, instead of Koch who killed cholera; about Christ's ascent into heaven instead of Montgolfier's and Wright's. Worse than that, they are taught that it is a virtue to accept statements without adequate evidence, which leaves them a prey to quacks of every kind in later life, and makes it very difficult for them to accept the methods of thought which are successful in science. J.B.S. Haldane

  8. The good Lord never gives you more than you can handle. Unless you die of something. Richard Guindon

  9. Our hope of immortality does not come from any religions, but nearly all religions come from that hope. Robert G. Ingersoll

  10. We cannot hope for a society in which formal organized religion dies out. But we can stop behaving as if it was worthy of our collective respect. A.N. Wilson

  11. Imagine the people who believe such things and who are not ashamed to ignore, totally, all the patient findings of thinking minds through all the centuries since the Bible was written. And it is these ignorant people, the most uneducated, the most unimaginative, the most unthinking among us, who would make themselves the guides and leaders of us all; who would force their feeble and childish beliefs on us; who would invade our schools and libraries and homes. I personally resent it bitterly. Isaac Asimov

  12. A believer is a bird in a cage, a free-thinker is an eagle parting the clouds with tireless wing. Robert G. Ingersoll

  13. Religion to me is much like the story "The Pit and the Pendulum," every time the blade of religious censorship swings it comes closer and closer to severing freedom from the people. W.J. Wallace Jr.

  14. There must be no barriers to freedom of inquiry. There is no place for dogma in science. The scientist is free, and must be free to ask any question, to doubt any assertion, to seek for any evidence, to correct any errors. J. Robert Oppenheimer

  15. If I had been the Virgin Mary, I would have said no. Margaret "Stevie" Smith

  16. The truths which God revealed have been overthrown by the truths which man has discovered. Lemuel K. Washburn

  17. I like to browse in occult bookshops if for no other reason than to refresh my commitment to science. Heinz Pagels

  18. The supernatural is the natural not yet understood. Elbert Hubbard

  19. People everywhere enjoy believing things that they know are not true. It spares them the ordeal of thinking for themselves and taking responsibility for what they know. Brooks Atkinson

  20. Science is like a blabbermouth who ruins a movie by telling you how it ends. There are some things we don't want to know. Important things. Ned Flanders (The Simpsons)