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: 3 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 Ruth Anthony-Gardner on January 4, 2020 at 1:50pm

Joan, your mention of " the processes had to be imagined, thought through, and put into place" makes me also think of that in regard to climate destabilization. 

... without backgrounds in climate science, it can be hard to connect a planet-scale atmospheric calamity with the reality of daily life.

Feargus O’Sullivan

One author said the climate movement is maturing, in that discussions are beginning about means to address climate destabilization instead of just demanding attention to the threat.

It's easier to connect planet-scale changes to everyday life now for Australians, and others paying attention to their crisis. <sigh> The harder challenge is to for those without climate science backgrounds to make sense of existential climate crisis. So many people rely on woo to make sense of reality. Such as Pence, Pompeo, and Barr, rigorously working to overthrow secular democracy in favor of corporate-loving fascistic theocracy. I think we need a new kind of truth-loving cooperative transparency to cut through toxic Dominator Culture memes, exposing self-interest, corruption, and too-narrow perspectives (for global existential challenges). These "heritage" memes are killing us.

Comment by Loren Miller on January 4, 2020 at 7:43am

Just keep asking yourself: What would Jesus not do?
-- Chuck Palahniuk, Choke

Jesus is the great contradiction. He tells us to love one another, then threatens us with eternal punishment. He preaches non-violence, then goes after the money-changers at the temple with a whip. He proclaims that anyone who says, "You fool!" will not enter the kingdom of Heaven, then calls Pharisees fools multiple times. What's wrong with this picture?

Comment by Joan Denoo on January 4, 2020 at 2:09am

“People can have their opinions about everything in the world, but people's opinions end where the tip of my nose begins. Your opinions of others can only go so far as to where their own shoreline is. The world is for your taking, but other people are not. One is only allowed to have an opinion of me, if that person is done educating him/herself on everything about me. Before people educate themselves on everything about you, they're not allowed to open their venomous mouthes and have an opinion about you.”
~ C. JoyBell C.

Comment by Loren Miller on January 3, 2020 at 8:06am

I have my beliefs, you have your beliefs, but don't use the machinery of government to impose them on others.
-- New Jersey Assemblyman John Burzichelli

Would that Assemblyman Burzichelli's statement were actually codified into law!

Comment by Joan Denoo on January 3, 2020 at 4:43am

When JFK announced the goal of putting a man on the moon and returning him safely back, there were no tools, materials, and fuels in existence, according to Ed Lindaman, who was president of Whitworth College when I met him. He came from North American Rockwell where he was director of programming for the Apollo space project. Ed was instrumental in advising me when writing my master's thesis. 

He taught us that we learn from the ideas and actions of people who came before us; that was the memory of the past. In order to build a rocket to perform JFK's goal, the equipment, the procedures, the processes had to be imagined, thought through, and put into place; that was his definition of a memory of the future. 

One sets a goal and then develops the process to make it happen in the present. The memories of the past and future are what makes something happen. 

Comment by Loren Miller on January 2, 2020 at 6:15am

Tomorrow and plans for tomorrow can have no significance at all unless you are in full contact with the reality of the present, since it is in the present and only in the present that you live. There is no other reality than present reality, so that, even if one were to live for endless ages, to live for the future would be to miss the point everlastingly.
― Alan Watts, The Wisdom of Insecurity: A Message for an Age of Anxiety

This is rather an expansion of the assertion made by Sam Harris that "It Is Always Now," and I think it makes an important statement regarding being invested in the current moment.

Comment by Joan Denoo on January 1, 2020 at 3:23pm

Loren, I include parents, as well as the attitudes, beliefs, customs, traditions, and values of the community into which one develops.  

Comment by Joan Denoo on January 1, 2020 at 2:47pm

Grinning Cat, Ó Briain's quote takes us back to 

Knows that she knows, 

Knows that she doesn't know,

Doesn't know that she knows, 

Doesn't know that she doesn't know. 

As to science, the wonders of the scientific method is its flexibility,

"guided only by systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses."

~ Lexico Dictionary

Comment by Ruth Anthony-Gardner on January 1, 2020 at 12:56pm

Great Xun Zi quote, Loren!

Comment by Loren Miller on January 1, 2020 at 9:05am

You have it precisely, Chris.


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