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: 23
Latest Activity: 1 hour 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


Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Alan Perlman 10 hours ago. 12 Replies

"APHORISM XXV. He who begins by loving Christianity better than Truth, will proceed by loving his own sect or Church better than Christianity, and end loving himself better than all."~…Continue

Tags: Truth


Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Joan Denoo Sep 14, 2018. 2 Replies

The word “Permaculture” is the combination of the two words “permanent” and “agriculture.” It is a method of agricultural philosophy that allows gardeners to create and sustain growing food in a way…Continue

Tags: production, shelter, food, permaculture, Mollison

On Emotion, Vulnerability, and a Flawed God

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Grinning Cat Sep 10, 2018. 5 Replies

On 31 May, 2018, Joan Denoo posted a most excellent quote from David Hume: That quote was well deserving of a response, which is the following:The most preposterous notion that H. sapiens has ever…Continue

Tags: flawed, vulnerable, emotion, god

Will McAvoy's Rant: "America Is NOT the World's Greatest Country"

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Joan Denoo Aug 25, 2018. 3 Replies

Aaron Sorkin has a habit of swinging for the fences when he writes political commentary as entertainment for television.  This was first evinced in the network television series, The West Wing, and…Continue

Tags: The Newsroom, Will McAvoy, Aaron Sorkin

Comment Wall


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Comment by Loren Miller on April 26, 2018 at 8:44pm

Good compliment to my quote, Bertold, and it really points out the utter absurdity of religion in the 21st century.  That people could have a world of information at their fingertips and yet still believe in iron-age superstitions amounts to a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.

Comment by Bertold Brautigan on April 26, 2018 at 7:46pm

The ridiculous belief that humanity could be cursed and condemned to eternal torment because mythological characters fiddled with the wrong fruit has caused more suffering and mental illness than any other “religious” or political concept in history.

It still amazes me that seemingly normal people—folks with pagers and computers—folks who can fill out their own tax forms and program their VCRs, can walk around and smile with this malignant spiritual tumor nestled deep within their otherwise intelligent brains. It’s not only absurd, it’s downright toxic!

~Lon Milo Duquette

Comment by Loren Miller on April 26, 2018 at 5:31am

Belief in the supernatural reflects a failure of the imagination.
– Edward Abbey

I see the above as being especially true when looking at the models of reality science employs versus those described in the bible – no comparison at all!

Comment by Loren Miller on April 25, 2018 at 6:00am

It is my firm conviction that man has nothing to gain, emotionally or otherwise, by adhering to a falsehood, regardless of how comfortable or sacred that falsehood may appear. Anyone who claims, on the one hand, that he is concerned with human welfare, and who demands, on the other hand, that man must suspend or renounce the use of his reason, is contradicting himself.

There can be no knowledge of what is good for man apart from knowledge of reality and human nature, and there is no manner in which this knowledge can be acquired except through reason. To advocate irrationality is to advocate that which is destructive to human life.

― George H. Smith, Atheism: The Case Against God

"... nothing to gain ... by adhering to a falsehood..." To which I say, simply, "BINGO."

Comment by Joan Denoo on April 25, 2018 at 2:01am

Loren,  like learning about how to listen to music. The nuances, although subtle, have energy. 

Comment by Loren Miller on April 24, 2018 at 6:25pm

Joan, in the case of music like this, while the meaning of the words can be important, it's the overall sense of the work and its performance that really matters.

Even with that, "quiet nights," quiet chords," "floating on the silence" – these words, associated with an accompaniment which hovers a fraction over silence itself only reinforces the ideas, spoken in a meaningful whisper, by comparison with so much of music today.

A long time ago, I learned a concept from Maharishi Mahesh Yogi: "playing the silence."  To me, that is a large portion of what is happening here and with most if not all the rest of the first Getz / Gilberto album.  That their expression was made in near-silence and the expression was so profound is what impresses me.

Comment by Joan Denoo on April 24, 2018 at 6:10pm

Loren, I get your point, although I don't understand the words. The rhythm is nice and relaxing. 

Comment by Loren Miller on April 24, 2018 at 3:45pm

Quiet nights of quiet stars,
Quiet chords from my guitar,
Floating on the silence that surrounds us.

-- Antonio Carlos Jobim, "Corcovado"

Interesting that you should mention the blues, Joan.  I listened to "Corcovado" last night, and it has elements of the blues in it, but there is nothing whining or complaining about this song or any song of the ilk which is bossa nova. Indeed, bossa nova is the mother of some of the most beautiful love songs I have ever heard, though none more lovely than this:

Comment by Joan Denoo on April 24, 2018 at 2:13pm

I don't like to listen to the songs about the Blues. It sounds like wailing and whining to me, playing the Victim role in life. 

If one feels like a victim, git up off your butt, put a book, or a shovel, or a pen in your hand and start doing something. It doesn't really matter what, just DO SOMETHING!

Being a victim is a choice. Choose something else to do. 

Comment by Bertold Brautigan on April 24, 2018 at 2:04pm

In a similar vein--

Man cannot make a worm, yet he will make gods by the dozen.
     ~Michel de Montaigne


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