Quotations – Momentous, Memorable, Meaningful


Quotations – Momentous, Memorable, Meaningful

A place to share the words of others (or your own!) which have been impactful in your life, whether they're serious, poignant, humorous, or just something worth noting.

Members: 24
Latest Activity: 40 minutes ago

I have been a quote collector and quote monger for at least as long as I've been an atheist and probably a good deal longer.  My admiration for those who enjoy reputations as wordsmiths extends even further back, whether we're talking about John F. Kennedy's assertion: "We choose to go to the moon," George Santayana's warning: "Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it," or James T. Kirk's deft observation when faced with the dauntingly huge First Federation ship: "Not chess, Mr. Spock ... poker!"

The realm of atheist activism has had its own share of verbal craftsmen and women, from Madalyn Murray O'Hair's: "An atheist believes that a hospital should be built instead of a church." to Aron Ra's succinct: "If you can't show it, you don't know it."

Regardless of the topic, these are words which are capable of fomenting inspiration, reflection, and sometimes even action.  They can educate and illuminate the human condition and allow us to better know ourselves.  That said, here is an open invitation to share those words which have been particularly meaningful or impactful or timely or just special to you for one reason or another.

Let's share those words and have fun!

One bit of clerical business: please hold your quotes in the comment area below to 20 lines or 200 words.  One comment should not so dominate the Home page of this group that no other comment is visible.  That way, the briefer comments and quotes of all participants are more likely to be seen, read, and appreciated.  If you have a long quote or commentary, create a post, please.

Discussion Forum

"If Right Doesn't Matter, We're Lost." (Adam Schiff)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Patricia on Friday. 1 Reply

This is a bit rushed, but I wanted to post Adam Schiff's closing statement to the impeachment trial on 24 January 2020.  This is potent stuff, and it speaks to Schiff's integrity and determination to…Continue

Tags: statement, impeachment, Adam Schiff

On authority, obedience, and "liberal" vs. "conservative" values

Started by Grinning Cat. Last reply by Joan Denoo Dec 18, 2019. 2 Replies

Last week Loren shared this quotation in the group comments:But here steps in Satan, the eternal rebel, the first freethinker and the emancipator of worlds. He makes man ashamed of his bestial…Continue

Tags: politics, purity, loyalty, liberal, conservative

The Founding Myth: A Striking Quote

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Grinning Cat Nov 4, 2019. 4 Replies

Over the last couple of weeks, I have been reading Andrew L. Seidel’s excellent book, The Founding Myth: Why Christian Nationalism is UN-AMERICAN. Barely four chapters in, Seidel has already…Continue

Tags: rights, The Founding Myth, Seidel, Andrew

"Mr. President ... I Don't Work For You"

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Loren Miller Aug 31, 2019. 13 Replies

There has been a major shot across President Donald Trump's bow and it came, believe it or not, from Fox News.  Specifically, it came from Fox reporter and commentator Neil Cavuto, in response to a…Continue

Tags: Neil Cavuto, Fox News, Donald Trump

Comment Wall


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Comment by Loren Miller on December 21, 2019 at 8:40am

stupidity: a process, not a state. A human being takes in far more information than he or she can put out. “Stupidity” is a process or strategy by which a human, in response to social denigration of the information she or he puts out, commits him or herself to taking in no more information than she or he can put out. (Not to be confused with ignorance, or lack of data.) Since such a situation is impossible to achieve because of the nature of mind/perception itself in its relation to the functioning body, a continuing downward spiral of functionality and/or informative dissemination results,’ and he understood why! ‘The process, however, can be reversed,’ the voice continued, ‘at any time.'
― Samuel R. Delany, Stars in My Pocket Like Grains of Sand

The question, in some cases, remains: does the subject WANT the process to be reversed?

Comment by Grinning Cat on December 20, 2019 at 10:38am

Loren commented on Hanlon's razor, and a counterexample in the current US misadministration, "which seems to be equally facile with both malice AND stupidity!"

A certain wascally wabbit characterized that mental state more aptly than he knew:

What a maroon! What an ignoranimus!

Comment by Loren Miller on December 20, 2019 at 5:59am

There is something infantile in the presumption that somebody else has a responsibility to give your life meaning and point… The truly adult view, by contrast, is that our life is as meaningful, as full and as wonderful as we choose to make it.
-- Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion

Of course, it's infantile, because it reflects a mindset where the individual cannot take responsibility for his or her own life and needs external intervention to find that purpose, and in this case, the absurd concept of supernatural intervention. And again, I have to put this out there:

If we’re to grow up as a species, we need to address the systems that infantilize us.
-- TheraminTrees

Comment by Loren Miller on December 19, 2019 at 5:52am

Life is like its own reward.
-- Matt Dillahunty

It is, indeed ... because it allows us to discover the incredible wonder which is this universe, with galaxies and planets and moons and rock slides and conifers and microscopic life along side lions and tigers and bears (oh, my!). To be able to look at all of that, study and understand it and make it all a part of who we are. I'd say that's SOME reward!

Comment by Joan Denoo on December 18, 2019 at 12:24pm

"Strengthen the female mind by enlarging it, and there will be an end to blind obedience; but, as blind obedience is ever sought for by power, tyrants and sensualist are in the right when they endeavor to keep women in the dark, because the former only want slaves, and the latter a play-thing."

~ Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797), A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792)

Comment by Randall Smith on December 18, 2019 at 6:51am

Some good ones, Loren. Vonnegut was a Hoosier, you know.

Comment by Loren Miller on December 18, 2019 at 5:34am

Being a Humanist means trying to behave decently without expectation of rewards or punishment after you are dead.
-- Kurt Vonnegut

Mostly because behaving decently greases the wheels between us and our neighbors and makes things in general run better and smoother, which makes sense ... at least to most of us.

Comment by Loren Miller on December 17, 2019 at 5:48am

The truly scary thing about such people is that they don't WANT to live their own lives.  Most of them are afraid of offending the god they've created and they would rather be robots or puppets than thinking, critical beings.

Comment by Loren Miller on December 16, 2019 at 5:01am

Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.
-- Hanlon's Razor

Yet another "razor" which I have only learned about recently. The sad problem with this one is the current administration, which seems to be equally facile with both malice AND stupidity!

Comment by Loren Miller on December 15, 2019 at 7:16am

I'd take the awe of understanding over the awe of ignorance any day.
-- Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt

So would I, Doug, so would I...


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