Bertrand Russell Quotes


Star One of the symptoms of approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one's work is terribly important.
Star If I were a medical man, I should prescribe a holiday to any patient who considered his work important.
Work is of two kinds: first, altering the position of matter at or near the earth's surface relative to other matter; second, telling other people to do it.
Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons.
What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the wish to find out, which is the exact opposite.
Men are born ignorant, not stupid; they are made stupid by education.
What men really want is not knowledge but certainty.
The degree of one's emotion varies inversely with one's knowledge of the facts- the less you know the hotter you get.
Conventional people are roused to fury by departure from convention, largely because they regard such departure as a criticism of themselves.
Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric.
Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom, in the pursuit of truth as in the endeavour after a worthy manner of life.
I did not know I loved you until I heard myself telling so, for one instance I thought, "Good God, what have I said?" and then I knew it was true.
I would never die for my beliefs, cause I might be wrong.
Most people would sooner die than think; in fact, they do so.
The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts.
Of all forms of caution, caution in love is perhaps the most fatal to true happiness.
Few people can be happy unless they hate some other person, nation, or creed.
So far as I can remember, there is not one word in the Gospels in praise of intelligence.
Man is a credulous animal and must believe something. In the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones.
Mathematics, rightly viewed, posses not only truth, but supreme beauty -- a beauty cold and austere, like that of sculpture.
It can be shown that a mathematical web of some kind can be woven about any universe containing several objects. The fact that our universe lends itself to mathematical treatment is not a fact of any great philosophical significance.
The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution.
There is no nonsense so arrant that it cannot be made the creed of the vast majority by adequate government action.
The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd; indeed in view of the silliness of the majority of mankind, a widespread belief is more likely to be foolish than sensible.
Although it is a gloomy view to suppose that life will die out, sometimes when I contemplate the things that people do with their lives I think it is almost a consolation.
It is a waste of energy to be angry with a man who behaves badly, just as it is to be angry with a car that won't go.
I found one day in school a boy of medium size ill-treating a smaller boy. I expostulated, but he replied: 'The bigs hit me, so I hit the babies; that's fair.' In these words he epitomized the history of the human race.
Every man, wherever he goes, is encompassed by a cloud of comforting convictions, which move with him like flies on a summer day.
A life without adventure is likely to be unsatisfying, but a life in which adventure is allowed to take whatever form it will is sure to be short.
Teachers are more than any other the guardians of civilization.
The people who are regarded as moral luminaries are those who forego ordinary pleasures themselves and find compensation in interfering with the pleasures of others.
Whenever one finds himself inclined to bitterness, it is a sign of emotional failure.
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.
The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.

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