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: 10 hours 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 Grinning Cat Feb 1. 3 Replies

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 11, 2019 at 6:43am

It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it.
-- Albert Einstein

With you 100%, Albert.

Comment by Grinning Cat on December 10, 2019 at 2:15pm

The inclusion of atheism among the list of religions and worldviews Joan mentioned reminded me of a few related quotes.

"If atheism is a religion, then health is a sickness."

"If atheism is a religion, then bald is a hair color."
-- Mark Schnitzius, responding to "then health is a sickness" in the Usenet newsgroup alt.atheism (Dec. 1993)

Atheism is a religion like baldness is a hairstyle.

-- Two Cult Survivor
(On an AN blog page that's no longer here, he wrote, "It's not. But it is. But it's not." He pointed out that a society that supposedly accepts freedom of religion should equally respect the "religious choice" not to follow any religion.

"When a theist claims atheism is a religion, the appropriate response ... is to say 'You do not want me forcing my religion on you or your children, and I do not want you forcing your religion on me or mine.' ")

Comment by Loren Miller on December 10, 2019 at 5:50am

Donald Trump, with his feral cunning, knew. The oleaginous Mike Pence, with his talent for toadyism and appetite for obsequiousness, could, Trump knew, become America’s most repulsive public figure. And Pence, who has reached this pinnacle by dethroning his benefactor, is augmenting the public stock of useful knowledge. Because his is the authentic voice of today’s lickspittle Republican Party, he clarifies this year’s elections: Vote Republican to ratify groveling as governing.
-- George F. Will

I am not always in agreement with Will's opinions on topics political, but in this particular instance, I think George drilled it through its head, with an elevated use of vocabulary which would likely flummox the Orange Cheeto and disturb his Dominionist sidekick. The real shame is that this op-ed piece is over a year and a half old, and I am only now becoming aware of it.

Comment by Loren Miller on December 9, 2019 at 8:45am

[click on image to enlarge]

A brilliant statement by a man who should not be underestimated for his understanding of the issues surrounding atheism and free speech.

Comment by Loren Miller on December 8, 2019 at 7:43am

Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.
-- Isaac Asimov

Over on Hemant Mehta's site, there was a recent article about some conservative commentator, claiming that liberals were "forcing" him to stock up on ammunition, because of all the gains made in progressive issues. I read that and was instantly reminded of the above quote. The shame is that fools like him could force a confrontation which would ultimately serve neither him nor us.

Would that he and his kind could recognize that.

Comment by Joan Denoo on December 7, 2019 at 5:58pm

There are many living religions today; I can't even find an article that lists them all. In my journey to 32 nations of the world, I ran across more than I can remember. This is an incomplete list, obviously, however, you are welcome to add to it if you wish. People tend to follow in the religious traditions of their ancestors unless conversion to another takes place. A typical modern trend is to reject the notion of a superhuman power altogether.  

Religious ‘Nones’ Fastest Growing Group in the U.S.; 3 States See R...

So, for those who do not know which religious tradition or sacred texts to follow, take your pick. You will be "right" with some community in the world 

American Native Religions





Chinese folk religions









Roman Catholicism





Traditional African Religions


Comment by Loren Miller on December 7, 2019 at 8:04am

There are so many different faiths. How do you know the holy book you have been brought up with is the true one? And if all the others are wrong, what makes you think your holy book isn’t wrong too?
― Richard Dawkins, Outgrowing God: A Beginner’s Guide

Sure, a believer will tell you point-blank that theirs is the TRUE religion ... but they will never be able to give you a hard explanation as to WHY.

Comment by Loren Miller on December 6, 2019 at 7:22am

Faith affects a Christian nationalist's self-perception. It is often argued that Christians are humble and that atheists and scientists are arrogant. But this is backward. Atheists, scientists, and other rational citizens – and religious citizens in their non-religious thinking – claimed to have answers supported by evidence, not by faith. Christianity claims to know ultimate truths about the universe with absolute certainty because of faith, not evidence. Faith, almost by definition, is conceit.
-- Andrew Seidel, The Founding Myth

It's not just conceit, it's unwarranted presumption, particularly in that damned few if any of the truths believers assert to have been determined by faith are in any substantial way demonstrable. And like the man says:

If you can't show it, you don't know it.
-- Aron Ra

Comment by Patricia on December 5, 2019 at 12:37pm

Love Mr. Fry!

Comment by Loren Miller on December 5, 2019 at 8:03am

...they [the Roman Catholic Church] for example thought that slavery was perfectly fine... absolutely okay, and then they didn't, and what is the point of the Catholic Church if it says 'oh well we couldn't know better because nobody else did'? [To the affirmative team] Then what are you for?!
-- Stephen Fry, answering a question during the 2009 Intelligence Squared debate

Very good question, one which I'm not convinced has a satisfactory answer, though I'm about to ruminate a bit on the above in my blog.


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