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: 23 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

On Emotion, Vulnerability, and a Flawed God

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Loren Miller Jul 2. 3 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

Sam Harris on Morality and the Christian God

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Loren Miller May 24. 2 Replies

The debate between Sam Harris and William Lane Craig at Notre Dame in 2011 was particularly notable for one particular rebuttal by Harris to Craig, well into the debate.  Those 10 or so minutes…Continue

Big Bang vs Electric Universe, Lawrence Krauss' response

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Loren Miller May 23. 2 Replies

I wrote to Lawrence Krauss during the discussion of Big Bang vs Electric Universe:"Thurs, 5:54 PM, Lawrence, I belong to Atheist Nexus and a rather ugly debate began about the Big Bang Theory. One…Continue

The Oneida Perfectionists

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Loren Miller May 17. 4 Replies

The Oneida Perfectionists had a vision of utopian life, and they structured their communities according to ideological similarities.1. First, it believed that its members had entered into an…Continue

Tags: communist, authoritarian, leadership, utopia, free-love

Comment Wall


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Comment by Bertold Brautigan on May 14, 2018 at 8:30pm

What bothers me about religion isn't that it's nonsense, but that it's dangerous.

~Studs Kreitzer

Comment by Joan Denoo on May 14, 2018 at 6:57pm

Did not the writers of the Magna Carta have compassion? 

Comment by Joan Denoo on May 14, 2018 at 6:56pm

Homer, thanks for your response; I agree that early Quakers and some Early Yankees led the abolition of slavery, but why did it take so long? What of the human spirit gave them the right to own another or to own a wife? That should have occurred during the Age of Enlightenment, if not much earlier. Modern human moral codes are dreadfully recent. Such a short time of humans moving out of the animalistic stages into the age of humanity. 

Comment by Homer Edward Price on May 14, 2018 at 6:04pm

Joan, It was the Quakers who first recognized the evil of slavery, and it was the Anglican deacon Thomas Clarkson who led the movement for the abolition of slavery in the British colonies. The abolitionist movement in the United States was led by New England Yankee Christians.  They got that right, and it was not by accident:  It was a result of following the Christian teaching of compassion.  That has been the teaching of all great religions.  But most of them failed to apply it to slaves.

Comment by Loren Miller on May 14, 2018 at 5:59pm

Welcome to the Quotations group, Homer.  We look forward to your contributions!

Comment by Joan Denoo on May 14, 2018 at 3:45pm

I join Loren and Patricia in agreeing with Seth Andrews.

From where does one get his and her moral core?

It is a fair question. Those who claim religion or sacred texts fail to explain the subjugation of women and believe that it is moral to own a human being? 

I like Sam Haris' version, 

“Meaning, values, morality, and the good life must relate to facts about the well-being of conscious creatures—and, in our case, must lawfully depend upon events in the world and upon states of the human brain. Rational, open-ended, honest inquiry has always been the true source of insight into such processes. Faith, if it is ever right about anything, is right by accident.”
Sam Harris, The Moral Landscape: How Science Can Determine Human Values

(Emphasis mine)

Is the well-being of a person or sentient being experiencing the meaning, values, morality, of the good life?

Ancient Homo sapiens may have owned slaves; the people of the Old Testament owned slaves. How did it become unacceptable for one human to own another?

Well-being!  Is the person experiencing well-being? 

Tradition is not adequate. Attitudes, beliefs,  and customs are not sufficient to explain the rejection of slavery. One must step outside those common ways of deciding an issue,  look to a larger picture, and ask the tough questions. 

Is it moral to deny women, Blacks, and natives the vote when they live under the laws and pay taxes?

Is it moral to take land from native people without their consent?

Is it moral to pollute the air, water, and soils of those who live in the vicinity without their knowledge and consent?

Is it moral for the media to publish lies as news? 

Comment by Patricia on May 14, 2018 at 1:33pm

Nicely put.

Comment by Loren Miller on May 14, 2018 at 6:57am

Life is a precious, brief, fragile, amazing thing. Instead of being so fixated on living after death, I want to truly live before it. And be thankful against incredible odds, I was able to witness this part of the universe with my own eyes, first hand.
-- Seth Andrews

Right with you, Seth, all the way.

Comment by Patricia on May 13, 2018 at 1:06pm

Lots of churches here, but I don't notice much attendance.

Comment by Plinius on May 13, 2018 at 1:02pm

Great, Loren and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for success!


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