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Meditation 1025
Quotations LIV

I love quotations because it is a joy to find thoughts one might have, beautifully expressed with much authority by someone recognized wiser than oneself.  Marlene Dietrich

This is an occasional selection of quotations mostly, but not entirely, relevant to agnosticism, rationalism, and free thought. This is the fifty-fourth in an apparently unending series. Suggestions for previously unused quotations are always welcome.

Your thoughts on these quotations are welcome. Please use the contact page to provide your comments for publication. A discussion has been opened.

  1. "The greatest tragedy in mankind's entire history may be the hijacking of morality by religion." Arthur C. Clarke

  2. If there is a God, his plan is very similar to someone not having a plan. Eddie Izzard

  3. If Christ should appear on Earth, he would be denounced as a mistaken, misguided man, insane and crazed. Henry Thoreau

  4. Here's a rule I recommend: Never practice two vices at once. Tallulah Bankhead

  5. Generally speaking, mistakes in religion are dangerous, those in philosophy only ridiculous." David Hume

  6. The truth is that male religious leaders have had - and still have - an option to interpret holy teachings either to exalt or subjugate women. They have, for their own selfish ends, overwhelmingly chosen the latter. Their continuing choice provides the foundation or justification for much of the pervasive persecution and abuse of women throughout the world. Jimmy Carter 

  7. Say what you will about the sweet miracle of unquestioning faith. I consider a capacity for it terrifying. Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

  8. Since it is no longer permissible to disparage any single faith or creed, let us start disparaging all of them. A religion is a belief system with no basis in reality whatever. Religious belief is without reason and without dignity, and its record is near-universally dreadful. Martin Amis

  9. Education's purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one. Malcolm Forbes

  10. There are in fact two things, science and opinion; the former begets knowledge, the latter ignorance. Hippocrates

  11. I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief. Gerry Spence

  12. What is freedom of expression? Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist. Salman Rushdie

  13. It will yet be the proud boast of women that they never contributed a line to the Bible. George W. Foote

  14. Science is a philosophy of discovery. Intelligent design is a philosophy of ignorance. You cannot build a program of discovery on the assumption that nobody is smart enough to figure out the answer to a problem. Neil DeGrasse Tyson

  15. [T]he purpose of education is not to validate ignorance but to overcome it...  The last thing we want to do is water down the teaching of biology because some people don’t recognize that evolution happened. Evolution is the basis of modern biology and, in fact, if a lot of people don’t believe it, it only means we have to do a better job teaching it.  Lawrence Krauss

  16. If your morals make you dreary, depend on it , they are wrong. Robert Louis Stevenson

  17. Life is a sexually transmitted disease and the mortality rate is one hundred percent. R. D. Laing

  18. Death is more universal than life; everyone dies but not everyone lives. A. Sachs

  19. Science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality. Carl Sagan

  20. What man believes, God believes. Henry Thoreau