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: 8 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


Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Joan Denoo Sep 14. 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. 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. 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

Ingersoll Day August 11th

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Plinius Aug 12. 2 Replies

Robert Green Ingersoll (1833-1899)"When I became convinced that the universe is natural, that all the ghosts and gods are myths, there entered into my brain, into my soul, into every drop of my blood…Continue

Tags: fearless, joyous, freedom, Day, agnostic

Comment Wall


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Comment by Loren Miller on August 30, 2018 at 6:47am

The pattern and original of all dictatorship is the surrender of reason to absolutism and the abandonment of critical, objective inquiry.
-- Christopher Hitchens

And the scariest part of that observation is that we are now seeing that same surrender in the United States as much in the political venue as we are in the religious scene.

Comment by Ruth Anthony-Gardner on August 29, 2018 at 8:41pm

Funny, Grinning Cat.

Good W.H. Auden quote, Bertold.

Comment by Bertold Brautigan on August 29, 2018 at 6:48pm
"I am always amazed by the courage of people who put themselves out in public in the middle of unspeakable tragedy. But, dammit, I cannot imagine the strength it takes to crack wise under those circumstances. Not only did Rob Tibbetts tell the president* and all those reeking vampires on Fox News to keep his daughter out of their politics and her name out of their mouths, he was funny while he did it."

~Charlie Pierce
Comment by Grinning Cat on August 29, 2018 at 2:48pm

"What do you call someone who knows three languages?

What do you call someone who knows two languages?

What do you call someone who knows only one language?
An American."

Comment by Bertold Brautigan on August 29, 2018 at 1:52pm
[Sorry for the repeat with corrections; f-ing Ning won't let me delete the first one.]

"We cannot understand the present without a knowledge of the past, our native land without having spent some time in a foreign country, our mother-tongue without a working knowledge of at least two other languages. Without such knowledge, our love of ourselves at the present moment, of our country, of our language, remains an ignorant idolatry . . . "

~W.H. Auden
Comment by Bertold Brautigan on August 29, 2018 at 1:26pm
"Tis the times' plague, when madmen lead the blind."

~William Shakespeare
Comment by Idaho Spud on August 29, 2018 at 1:16pm

I like that David Page quote, Ruth.  Didn't realize that.

Comment by Loren Miller on August 29, 2018 at 6:01am

I regard monotheism as the greatest disaster ever to befall the human race. I see no good in Judaism, Christianity, or Islam -- good people, yes, but any religion based on a single, well, frenzied and virulent god, is not as useful to the human race as, say, Confucianism, which is not a religion but an ethical and educational system.
― Gore Vidal

I suppose there could be a benign monotheism, but those currently extant are anything but harmless, and they deserve all the scrutiny, criticism and ridicule they get.

Comment by Bertold Brautigan on August 28, 2018 at 10:45am
Albert's most often misused expression is "God doesn't play dice with the universe," by which he meant that the universe is rationally structured, not that there's a deity in charge.

This is a typical sort of willful ignorance. When Dylan wrote "With God on our side," some idiot commentator said "Well, at least he believes in God." People who are metaphor challenged should just stfu. It reminds me of the old saying borrowed to good use by Sherlock Holmes, "There but for the grace of God goes Sherlock Holmes." This has often been used by believers and non-believers alike. It really has nothing to do with claiming the existence of a deity.
Comment by Loren Miller on August 28, 2018 at 5:47am

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

It frequently astonishes me how some believers either inadvertently or purposefully misunderstand Einstein's occasional references to a deity ... but then, I wonder how many of them have ever heard of Spinoza!


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