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Words of Great People
Inspirational Words and Short Philosophies
Words of Great People
Poems and Short Stories
Words of Even Greater People

"In dwelling, be close to the land. In meditation, go deep in the heart. In dealing with others, be gentle and kind. In speech, be true. In ruling, be just. In daily life, be competent. In action, be aware of the time and the season."

- Lao Tzu

"You don't get to choose how you're going to die. Or when. You can only decide how you're going to live. Now."

- Joan Baez

"Live as you will wish to have lived when you are dying."

- Christian Furchtegott Gellert

"Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow. Let me hold you while I may, for it may not always be so. One day I shall dig my nails into the earth, or bury my face in the pillow, or stretch myself taut, or raise my hands to the sky and want, more than all the world, your return. "

Mary Jean Iron

"Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree."

Martin Luther

"You can take no credit for beauty at sixteen. But if you are beautiful at sixty, it will be your soul's own doing."

- Marie Stopes

"It is never too late to be what you might have been."

-George Elliot

"No matter what you do, no matter how stupid, dumb or damaging you judge it to be, there is a lesson to be learned from it. No matter what happens to you, no matter how unfair, inequitable or wrong, there’s something you can take from the situation and use for your advancement.”

-Peter McWilliams

"If a man does his best, what else is there?

"Courage is fear holding on a minute longer.

"Better to fight for something than live for nothing.

"It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived."

-General George S. Patton

"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature, and has no chance of being free unless made or kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

-John Stuart Mill

"Those who have long enjoyed such privileges as we enjoy forget in time that men have died to win them."


"Those who control the past control the future. Those who control the present control the past.

"Being in a minority, even a minority of one, does not make you mad. There is truth and there is untruth, and if you cling to the truth even against the whole world, you are not mad.

"Perhaps one did not want to be loved as much as to be understood.

"If you love someone, you love them, and if you have nothing else to give, you still give them love.

"For after all, how do we know that two and two make four? Or that the force of gravity works? Or that the past is unchangeable? If both the past and the external world exist only in the mind, and if the mind is controllable- what then?"


"Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once."

-William Shakespeare, "Julius Caesar"

"If we were never ill, we would not know what it was to be well. If we never knew hunger, we would take no pleasure in being full. If there were never any any war, we would not appreciate peace. And if there were no winter, we would never see the spring.

"Nature really is built up of different "atoms" that join and separate again. A hydrogen atom in a cell at the end of my nose was once part of an elephant's trunk. A carbon atom in my cardiac muscle was once in the tail of a dinosaur.

"But most people are content with a life among shadows. they give no thought to what is casting the shadows. They think shadows are all there are, never realizing even that they are, in fact, shadows. And thus they pay no heed to the immortality of their own soul.

"A Russian astronaut and a Russian brain surgeon were once discussing religion. the brain surgeon was a Christian but the astronaut was not. The astronaut said 'I have been out in space many times but I've never seen God or angels.' And the brain surgeon said 'And I've operated on many clever brains but I've never seen a single thought.

"Nevertheless we are free individuals, and this freedom condemns us to make choices throughout our lives. there are no eternal values or norms we can adhere to, which makes our choices even more significant. Because we are totally responsible for everything we do. Satre emphasized that man must never disclaim the responsibility for his actions. Nor can we avoid the responsibility of making our own choices on the grounds that we 'must' go to work or that we 'must' live up to certain middle-class expectations as to how we should live. Those who thus slip into the anonymous masses will never be other than members of the impersonal flock, having fled from themselves into self-deception. On the other side our freedom obliges us to make something of ourselves, to live 'authentically' or 'truly.'

This is not least the case as regards our ethical choices. We can never lay the blame on 'human nature' or 'human frailty' or anything like that. Now and then it happens that grown men behave like pigs and then blame it on 'the old Adam.' But there is no 'old Adam.' He is merely a figure we clutch at to avoid taking responsibility for our own actions."

-Sophie's World

"This is the beginning of a new day. You have been given this day to use as you will. You can waste it or use it for good. What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever; in its place is something that you have left behind...let it be something good."


"To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and to endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded. "


"...This is a story about four people named Everybody, Somebody, Anybody, and Nobody. There was an important job to be done and Everybody was sure that Somebody would do it. Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it. Somebody got angry about that, because it was Everybody's job. Everybody thought Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn't do it. It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have."

- Unknown

"Love is the one treasure that multiplies by division. It is the one gift that grows bigger the more you take from it. It is the one business in which it pays to be an absolute spendthrift. You can give it away, throw it away, empty your pockets, shake the basket, turn the glass upside down, and tomorrow you will have more than ever."


"They say love hides behind every corner...I must be running in circles!"


"Free speech carries with it some freedom to listen."


"Your heart understands what your head cannot yet conceive; trust your heart."


"A peacock who sits on his tail is just another turkey."


"He who has never made a mistake has never made a discovery."


"If you are willing to admit faults, you have one less fault to admit."

-Unknown (Geez, doesn't anyone take credit for their words?)


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