Poetry (click here)


“...;for there is nothing good or bad, but thinking makes it so”,

"Hamlet",act 2, scene 2, line 232, William Shakespeare (1564-1616).

"What disturbs people's minds is not events but their judgments on events"

“Some things are up to us and some things are not up to us. Our opinions are up to us, and our impulses, desires, aversions–in short, whatever is our own doing. Our bodies are not up to us, nor are our possessions, our reputations, or our public offices, or, that is, whatever is not our own doing."

"In the first place, do not allow yourself to be carried away by [the] intensity [of your impression]: but say, 'Impression, wait for me a little. Let me see what you are, and what you represent. Let me test you.' Then, afterwards, do not allow it to draw you on by picturing what may come next, for if you do, it will lead you wherever it pleases. But rather, you should introduce some fair and noble impression to replace it, and banish this base and sordid one.

Remember that foul words or blows in themselves are no outrage, but your judgement that they are so. So when any one makes you angry, know that it is your own thought that has angered you. Wherefore make it your endeavour not to let your impressions carry you away. For if once you gain time and delay, you will find it easier to control yourself.

Make it your study then to confront every harsh impression with the words, 'You are but an impression, and not at all what you seem to be'. Then test it by those rules that you possess; and first by this–the chief test of all–'Is it concerned with what is in our power or with what is not in our power?' And if it is concerned with what is not in our power, be ready with the answer that it is nothing to you.

Epictetus, (c.55 – c.135 C.E.)

“If thou art pained by an external thing, it is not this that disturbs thee, but thy own judgement about it. And it is in thy power to wipe out this judgement [and your pain] now.”

Reject your sense of injury and the injury itself disappears.

Marcus Aurelius, philosopher and writer (121-180)

"It is foolish to see any other person as the cause of our own misery or happiness".

No universal truth contains the Ego-Self. There are no events or objects of the past, future, or present that are absolutely constant. [Therefore, do not] carry the burden of the past, indulge in fantasies of the future, nor intoxicate with the desires of the present.

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one getting burned.

Buddha, 563-483 BC

"Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony."

-Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869-1948)

"Why should I fear death? If I am, death is not. If death is, I am not. Why should I fear that which cannot exist when I do?"

-Epicurus, philosopher (c.341-270 BCE)

"To the mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders."

-Lao-Tzu, philosopher (6th century BCE)

“Emotional disturbance doesn’t come from anybody’s …. childhood. The idea that your mother made you disturbed is Freudian [non-sense]! The Freudian’s always forget to ask the most relevant question: ‘Who [believed] … your mother….?” The answer is, ‘You did!’ As Pogo says, ’We have seen the enemy , and it is us!’ We upset ourselves! Nobody in human history was ever made upset.”

Albert Ellis

Ideal Philosopher

Feels good like an optimistic.
Feels bad like a stoic.
Lives like a pragmatist
Enjoys like an epicurean.
Condemns like a determinist.
Believes like an existentialist.

Jimmy Walter


"If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?"

-Alexander Solzhenitsyn, novelist, Nobel laureate (1918- )

"It is said an Eastern monarch once charged his wise men to invent him a sentence to be ever in view, and which should be true and appropriate in all times and situations. They presented him the words: 'And this, too, shall pass away.' How much it expresses! How chastening in the hour of pride! How consoling in the depths of affliction!"

-Abraham Lincoln, 16th U.S. President (1809-1865)

"Fame is a vapor; popularity an accident; the only earthly certainty is oblivion."

-Mark Twain, author and humorist (1835-1910)

"You can not always control circumstances, but you can control your own thoughts."

-Charles Popplestown


"We cannot choose how many years we will live, but we can choose how much life those years will have. We cannot control the beauty of our face, but we can control the expression on it. We cannot control life's difficult moments but we can choose to make life less difficult. We cannot control the negative atmosphere of the world, but we can control the atmosphere of our minds. Too often we try to choose and control things we cannot. Too seldom we choose to control what we can - our attitude."

-John Maxwell

We are so vain that we even care for the opinion of those we don't care for."

-Marie Ebner von Eschenbach, writer (1830-1916)

"Every saint has a past and every sinner a future."

-Oscar Wilde, writer (1854-1900)

"Every man in the world is better than someone else. And not as good as someone else."

-William Saroyan, writer (1908-1981)

"Every man is a damned fool for at least five minutes every day.  Wisdom consists in not exceeding the limit."

 -Elbert Hubbard, author, editor, printer (1856-1915)

"Many wealthy people are little more than janitors of their possessions."

-Frank Lloyd Wright, architect (1867-1959)

"What a strange illusion it is to suppose that beauty is goodness."

-Leo Tolstoy, novelist and philosopher (1828-1910)

"While grief is fresh, every attempt to divert only irritates. You must wait till it be digested, and then amusement will dissipate the remains of it."

-Samuel Johnson, lexicographer (1709-1784)

"I don't know about success, but the basis of failure is trying to please everyone."

-Bill Cosby, comedian

Worry is interest paid on trouble before it is due.

Events in the past may be roughly divided into those which probably never happened and those which do not matter.

Men make counterfeit money; in many more cases, money makes counterfeit men. -Sydney J. Harris, journalist and author (1917-1986)

A nation is a society united by a delusion about its ancestry and by common hatred of its neighbors.

It takes in reality only one to make a quarrel. It is useless for the sheep to pass resolutions in favour of vegetarianism, while the wolf remains of a different opinion.

Nobody is bored when he is trying to make something that is beautiful or to discover something that is true.

Originality is undetected plagiarism.

Prayer gives a man the opportunity of getting to know a gentleman he hardly ever meets. I do not mean his maker, but himself.

The enemies of freedom do not argue; they shout and they shoot.

We have enslaved the rest of the animal creation, and have treated our distant cousins in fur and feathers so badly that beyond doubt, if they were able to formulate a religion, they would depict the Devil in human form.

-William R. Inge, clergyman, scholar, and author (1860-1954)

"Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you."

 -Carl Sandburg, poet (1878-1967)

"Laws are the spider's webs which, if anything small falls into them they ensnare it, but large things break through and escape."

-Solon, statesman (c. 638-c558 BCE)

"You can discover what your enemy fears most by observing the means he uses to frighten you."

-Eric Hoffer, philosopher and author (1902-1983)

"The use of money is all the advantage there is in having money."'

-Ben Franklin, Poor Richard's Almanac, 1736 

"Until lions have their historians, tales of the hunt shall always glorify the hunter."

 -African proverb

"We must believe in luck. For how else can we explain the success of those we don't like?"

 -Jean Cocteau, author and painter (1889-1963)

"After I'm dead I'd rather have people ask why I have no monument than why I have one."

-Cato the Elder, statesman, soldier, and writer (234-149 BCE)

"Man's life does not commence in the womb and never ends in the grave."

-Charan Singh, mystic (1916-1990)


"The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose."

-William Shakespeare, poet and dramatist (1564-1616)


"Be master of your petty annoyances and conserve your energies for the big, worthwhile things. It isn't the mountain ahead that wears you out - it's the grain of sand in your shoe."

-Robert Service, writer (1874-1958)


"When you call yourself an Indian or a Muslim or a Christian or a European, or anything else, you are being violent. Do you see why it is violent?  Because you are separating yourself from the rest of mankind. When you separate yourself by belief, by nationality, by tradition, it breeds violence. So a man who is seeking to understand violence does not belong to any country, to any religion, to any political party or partial system; he is concerned with the total understanding of mankind."

 -J. Krishnamurti, Freedom from the Known, pp.51-52


"A people who mean to be their own governors must arm themselves with the power hat knowledge gives. A popular government without popular knowledge or the means of acquiring it is but a prelude to a farce or a tragedy or perhaps both."

             -James Madison

"I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country...Corporations have been enthroned, an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money-power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until the wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed."

-Abraham Lincoln, November 12, 1864

"A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who has never learned to walk."  

-Franklin D. Roosevelt

"Many people hear voices when no-one is there. Some of them are called mad and are shut up in rooms where they stare at the walls all day. Others are called writers and they do pretty much the same thing."

-Margaret Chittenden, writer


"Simplicity doesn't mean to live in misery and poverty. You have what you need, and you don't want to have what you don't need."

-Charan Singh, mystic (1916-1990)


"Luck never gives; it only lends."

-Swedish proverb

"If you bungle raising your children, I don't think whatever else you do well matters very much."

-Jacqueline Kennedy Onasis

"Dignity consists not in possessing honors, but in the consciousness that we deserve them."

-Aristotle, philosopher (384-322 BCE)


"I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies, for the hardest victory is over self."

-Aristotle, philosopher (384-322 BCE)

"When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the
poor have no food, they call me a communist."

-Dom Helder Camara


"Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war in order to whip the citizenry into a patriotic fervor, for patriotism is indeed a double-edged sword. It both emboldens the blood, just as it narrows the mind. And when the drums of war have reached a fever pitch and the blood boils with hate and the mind has closed, the leader will have no need in seizing the rights of the citizenry. Rather, the citizenry, infused with fear and blinded by patriotism, will offer up all of their rights unto the leader and gladly so. How do I know? For this is what I have done. And I am Caesar."

 -Julius Caesar

"Politics is the art of choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable."

 -John Galbrait

"Our houses are such unwieldy property that we are often imprisoned rather than housed in them."

"It is the greatest of all advantages to enjoy no advantage at all."

"The cost of a thing is the amount of what I call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run."

-Henry David Thoreau, naturalist and author (1817-1862)

There was never a genius without a tincture of madness.

 -Aristotle, philosopher (384-322 BCE)

Solitude, though it may be silent as light, is like light, the mightiest of agencies; for solitude is essential to man. All men come into this world alone; all leave it alone.

-Thomas De Quincey, writer (1785-1859)

The believer is happy; the doubter is wise.

-Hungarian proverb

The sparrow is sorry for the peacock at the burden of his tail

-Rabindranath Tagore, poet, philosopher, author, songwriter, painter, educator, composer, Nobel laureate (1861-1941)

It is difficult to get a man to understand something,when his salary depends upon his not understanding it."

-Upton Sinclair

Ordering a man to write a poem is like commanding a pregnant woman to give birth to a red-headed child.

-Carl Sandburg, poet and biographer (1878-1967)


"Music hath charms to soothe a savage breast, To soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak."

-William Congreve, dramatist (1670-1729)


"The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking, and thus we drift toward unparalleled catastrophes."

-Albert Einstein

"I'm sometimes asked, 'Why do you spend so much of your time and money talking about kindness to animals when there is so much cruelty to men?' I answer: I am working at the roots." -George T. Angell, reformer (1823-1909)


“So often times it happens, that we spend our lives in chains, and never even know we have the key!”

-Jack Tempchin, Already Gone


Practice is everything [This is often misquoted as "Practice makes perfect"]

-Periander (c. 628–588 B.C.)

"...happiness is the highest good, being a realization and perfect practice of virtue, which some can attain, while others have little or none of it...

"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."


"He who is unable to live in society, or who has no need because he is sufficient for himself, must be either a beast or a god."

-Aristotle, Politics

"Always design a thing by considering it in its next larger context -- a chair in a room, a room in a house, a house in an environment, an environment in a city plan."

-Eliel Saarinen, Time Magazine, July 2, 1956


"Setting a goal is not the main thing. It is deciding how you will go about achieving it and staying with that plan."

-Tom Landry

"The majority of men meet with failure because of their lack of persistence in creating new plans to take the place of those which fail."

 -Napoleon Hill


"Reasonable people adapt themselves to the world. Unreasonable people attempt to adapt the world to themselves. All progress, therefore, depends on unreasonable people."

-George Bernard Shaw


"When you go into court you are putting your fate into the hands of twelve people who weren't smart enough to get out of jury duty."

-Norm Crosby


"There is no such thing as justice--in or out of court."

-Clarence Darrow


"Pray: To ask the laws of the universe to be annulled on behalf of a single petitioner confessedly unworthy."

-Ambrose Bierce

"If the gods listened to the prayers of men, all humankind would quickly perish since they constantly pray for many evils to befall one another."

-Epicurus, philosopher (c. 341-270 BCE


"It is easy enough to be friendly to one's friends. But to befriend the one who regards himself as your enemy is the quintessence of true religion. The other is mere business."

-Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869-1948)


" have never been contained except when I made the prison."

-Mary Evans, actress (1888-1976)


"The great rulers - the people do not notice their existence. The lesser ones they attach to and praise them. The still lesser ones - they fear them. The still lesser ones - they despise them. For where faith is lacking it cannot be met by faith."

-Tao Te Ching


"A misery is not to be measured from the nature of the evil, but from the temper of the sufferer."

-Joseph Addison, essayist and poet (1672-1719)


"The truth is rarely pure, and never simple."

-Oscar Wilde, writer (1854-1900)


"Nothing that grieves us can be called little: by the eternal laws of proportion a child's loss of a doll and a king's loss of a crown are events of the same size."

-Mark Twain, author and humorist (1835-1910)


"Everything you've learned in school as `obvious' becomes less and less obvious as you begin to study the universe. For example, there are no solids in the universe. There's not even a suggestion of a solid. There are no absolute continuums. There are no surfaces. There are no straight lines."

-R. Buckminster Fuller, engineer, designer, and architect (1895-1983)


"What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy."

-Mahatma Gandhi


 "I believe in compulsory cannibalism. If people were forced to eat what they killed there would be no more war."

  -Abbie Hoffman


"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction."

  -Albert Einstein


"After each war there is a little less democracy to save."

  -Brooks Atkinson


"I do not believe in the collective wisdom of individual ignorance."

-Thomas Carlyle

"If you are afraid of being lonely, don't try to be right."

-Jules Renard, writer (1864-1910)


"If a man have a genius for painting, poetry, music, architecture, or philosophy, he makes a bad husband, and an ill provider."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson, writer and philosopher (1803-1882)


"The guns and the bombs, the rockets and the warships, are all symbols of human failure."

  -Lyndon B Johnson


"The pioneers of a warless world are the young men (and women) who refuse military service."

  -Albert Einstein


"When will our consciences grow so tender that we will act to prevent human misery rather than avenge it?"

  -Eleanor Roosevelt


 "When the rich make war it's the poor that die."

  -Jean-Paul Sartre


"All violence, all that is dreary and repels, is not power, but the absence of power."

  -Ralph Waldo Emerson


"Violence is the first refuge of the incompetent."

  -Issac Asimov


"If you want to make peace, you don't talk to your friends. You talk to your enemies."

  -Moshe Dayan


"War, that mad game the world loves to play."

  -Jonathan Swift


"To himself everyone is immortal; he may know that he is going to die, but he can never know that he is dead."

-Samuel Butler, writer (1835-1902)


"If some great catastrophe is not announced every morning, we feel a certain void.  Nothing in the paper today, we sigh."

-Lord Acton


"You have reached the pinnacle of success as soon as you become uninterested in money, compliments, or publicity."

-Thomas Wolfe, novelist (1900-1938)


"To understand the heart and mind of a person, look not at what he has already achieved, but at what he aspires to."

-Kahlil Gibran, mystic, poet, and artist (1883-1931)


"The Rectification of Names consists in making relationships and duties and institutions conform as far as possible to their ideal meanings.... When this intellectual reorganization is at last effected, the ideal social order will come as night follows day - a social order where, just as a circle is a circle and a square a square, so every prince is princely [and] every official is faithful... "

-Confucius (as described by Hu Shih)

"Everyone wants to be Cary Grant. Even I want to be Cary Grant."

-Cary Grant, actor

"The map is not the territory;" and, "The word is not the thing."

 - Alfred Korzybski (Core-schib-ski)


"Although gold dust is precious, when it gets in your eyes, it obstructs your vision."



"Works of imagination should be written in very plain language; the more purely imaginative they are the more necessary it is to be plain."

-Samuel Taylor Coleridge, poet and philosopher (1772-1834)


"In all of us, even in good men, there is a lawless wild-beast nature, which peers out in sleep".

-Socrates, philosopher (469?-399 BCE)

"By trying to make things easier for their children parents can make things much harder for them. [similar to, "Why does a father want to save his child from the things that made the father what he is? - (Author unknown to me)]"

-Mardy Grothe, psychologist and author (1942- )


"I have always found that mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice."

-Abraham Lincoln, 16th U.S. President (1809-1865)

The tax which will be paid for the purpose of education is not more than the thousandth part of what will be paid to kings, priests and nobles who will rise up among us if we leave the people in ignorance.

Thomas Jefferson, third US president, architect and author (1743-1826)

"There is no more common error than to assume that, because prolonged and accurate mathematical calculations have been made, the application of the result to some fact of nature is absolutely certain."

- Alfred North Whitehead

An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made in a
very narrow field. -

Niels Bohr, physicist (1885-1962)

After two years in Washington, I often long for the realism and sincerity of Hollywood.

-Fred Thompson, US senator, lawyer, writer, and actor (1942-)

"An empire on which the sun would never set is one in which the rulers never sleep."


My feeling is that there is nothing in life but refraining from hurtingothers, and comforting those who are sad.

-Olive Schreiner, author (1855-1920

Television has done much for psychiatry by spreading information about it, as well as contributing to the need for it.

-Alfred Hitchcock, film-maker (1899-1980)


More Definitions and Notes:


Money: [a. OF. moneie, mon(n)oie (mod.F. monnaie) = Pr., Sp. moneda, Pg. moeda, It. moneta:---L. moneta (? f. monere to warn, remind) OED

Alcohol: [a. med.L. alcohol, ad. Arab. al-koh'l _collyrium,' the fine powder used to stain the eyelids, f. kahala, Heb. kakhal to stain, paint: see Ezekiel xxiii. [Equals tainted, painted ladies]

"The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese."

Psychologists and psychiatrists formally define substance dependence as a disorder characterized by criteria that include spending a great deal of time using the substance; using it more often than one intends; thinking about reducing use or making repeated unsuccessful efforts to reduce use; giving up important social, family or occupational activities to use it; and reporting withdrawal symptoms when one stops using it.