Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Related Quotes

Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav or Breslov, aka Reb Nachman Breslover or Nachman from Uman NULL

The main thing is faith! Every person must search within himself and strengthen himself in faith. For there are people who suffer the worst illnesses and afflictions only because of fallen faith, because, "God will send you wondrous plagues, great and faithful plagues and great and faithful sicknesses" (Deuteronomy 28:59). The plagues and sicknesses are "faithful" because they come on account of a lack of faith. Fallen faith causes "wondrous" plagues, for which no medicine, prayer or ancestral merit is of any avail...

Faith | Merit | People | Prayer | Search | Will |

Robert Browning

For the preacher's merit or demerit, It were to be wished that the flaws were fewer In the earthen vessel, holding treasure, But the main thing is, does it hold good measure Heaven soon sets right all other matters!

Good | Heaven | Merit | Right |

Robert Burns, aka Rabbie Burns, Scotland's favourite son, the Ploughman Poet, Robden of Solway Firth, the Bard of Ayrshire and in Scotland as simply The Bard

While Europe's eye is fix'd on mighty things, The fate of empires and the fall of kings; While quacks of State must each produce his plan, And even children lisp the Rights of Man; Amid this mighty fuss just let me mention, The Rights of Woman merit some attention.

Children | Fate | Merit | Rights | Woman | Fate |

Salomon ibn Gabirol, aka Solomon ben Judah or Avicebron

Lord, what is man but flesh and blood? O weep! His days unconscious stray, like shadows sweep, His stroke comes sudden and he falls on sleep. Lord, what is man? A carcase fouled and trodden, A noxious creature brimming with deceit, A fading flow’r that shrivels in the heat. Wert Thou as stern as he with sin is sodden, How could he face Thy wrath? Ah, see him creep: His stroke comes sudden and he falls on sleep. Lord, what is man? He rolls in mud and lies, Insanely fouls the clean and spoils the fine. Did but Thy justice follow his design, Mown like the grass were he, or herb that dies. In doom’s dark hour be then Thy pity deep, His stroke comes sudden and he falls on sleep. Lord, what is man? Proud, born in sin, defiant, His drink is violence and on wrong he feeds. Sea-tossed and furnace-fierce, if judged by deeds He would be crushed like weakling fighting giant. Thy mercy therefore let his prayer reap, His stroke comes sudden and he falls on sleep. Lord, what is man? A trickster vile, abhorred. If Thou shouldst deal with him in equity, A mouldered robe, a scattered cloud were he. Therefore forgiveness is his best award. His base is dust, his form a clayey heap, His stroke comes sudden and he falls on sleep. Lord, what is man? A tree despoiled, mere stubble Its only fruit. Didst Thou his sin repay, He like a snail or wax would melt away. Therefore forgive, nor press him in his trouble. Moth-like he rots, old joys he can but weep, His stroke comes sudden and he falls on sleep. Lord, what is man? A lonely creature driven Like fallen leaf, bemocked by empty words, As full of guile as basket is of birds. His rottenness would swift as smoke be riven, Didst Thou his measure, not Thy measure keep. His stroke comes sudden and he falls on sleep.

Day | Force | Greatness | Heart | Love | Merit | Soul | Speech | Thought | Work | Thought |

Shantideva NULL

The hostile multitudes are vast as space What chance is there that all should be subdued? Let but this angry mind be overthrown And every foe is then and there destroyed All the suffering in the world comes from seeking pleasure for oneself. All the happiness in the world comes from seeking pleasure for others. As long as space abides and as long as the world abides, so long may I abide, destroying the sufferings of the world. Where would I possibly find enough leather With which to cover the surface of the earth? But (just) leather on the soles of my shoes Is equivalent to covering the earth with it Likewise it is not possible for me To restrain the external course of things But should I restrain this mind of mine What would be the need to restrain all else? My body, thus, and all my good besides, And all my merits gained and to be gained, I give them all away withholding nothing To bring about the benefit of beings. All those who slight me to my face, Or do me any other evil, Even if they blame or slander me, May they attain the fortune of enlightenment! Take advantage of this human boat; Free yourself from sorrow’s mighty stream! This vessel will be later hard to find. The time that you have now, you fool, is not for sleep! Examine thus yourself from every side. Note harmful thoughts and every futile striving. Thus it is that heroes in the bodhisattva path Apply the remedies to keep a steady mind. Examine thus yourself from every side. Note harmful thoughts and every futile striving. Thus it is that heroes in the bodhisattva path Apply the remedies to keep a steady mind. Those who have no mental vigilance, Though they may hear the teachings, ponder them or meditate, With minds like water seeping from a leaking jug, Their learning will not settle in their memories. Suffering also has its worth. Through sorrow, pride is driven out And pity felt for those who wander in samsara; Evil is avoided, goodness seems delightful. May I be like a guard for those who are protectorless, A guide for those who journey on the road. For those who wish to go across the water, May I be a boat, a raft, a bridge. And so let beings do to me Whatever does not bring them injury. Whenever they catch sight of me, Let this not fail to bring them benefit. For sentient beings, poor and destitute, May I become a treasure ever plentiful, And lie before them closely in their reach, A varied source of all that they might need. As a blind man feels when he finds a pearl in a dustbin, so am I amazed by the miracles of awakening rising in my consciousness. It is the nectar of immortality that delivers us from death, the treasure that lifts us from death, the treasure that lifts us above poverty into the wealth of giving to life, the tree that gives shade to us when we roam about scorched by life, the bridge that takes us across the stormy river of life, the cool moon of compassion that calms our mind when it is agitated, the fun that dispels darkness, the butter made from the milk of kindness by churning it with the dharma. It is a feast of joy to which all are invited. All that I possess and use Is like the fleeting vision of a dream. It fades into the realms of memory; And fading, will be seen no more. Nothing that has passed can be regained. How much suffering and fear, and How many harmful things are in existence? If all arises from clinging to the “I”, What should I do with this great demon? Exchanging Self and Other.

Cause | Contemplation | Fear | Future | Good | Inclination | Joy | Means | Merit | Mind | Nothing | Patience | Perseverance | Pleasure | Repose | Strength | Suffering | Time | Will | Words | Zeal | Contemplation | Happiness |

Rutherford B. Hayes, fully Rutherford Birchard Hayes

General education is the best preventive of the evils now most dreaded. In the civilized countries of the world, the question is how to distribute most generally and equally the property of the world. As a rule, where education is most general the distribution of property is most general.... As knowledge spreads, wealth spreads. To diffuse knowledge is to diffuse wealth. To give all an equal chance to acquire knowledge is the best and surest way to give all an equal chance to acquire property.

Honor | Man | Merit | Success |

Saint Augustine, aka Augustine of Hippo, St. Austin, Bishop of Hippo NULL

Why, then, do I set before You an ordered account of so many things? it's certainly not through me that You know them. But I'm stirring up love for You in myself and in those who read this so that we may all say, great is the Lord and highly worthy to be praised. I tell my story for love of Your love.

Hope | Life | Life | Merit | Nothing | Sin | Wills |

Saint Augustine, aka Augustine of Hippo, St. Austin, Bishop of Hippo NULL

The true servants of God are not solicitous that He should order them to do what they desire to do, but that they may desire to do what He orders them to do.

Merit |

Saint Bernard of Clairvaux NULL

He that will teach himself in school, becomes a scholar to a fool.

Merit | Price | Redemption |

Saint John of the Cross, born Juan de Yepes Álvarez NULL

This dark night is an inflowing of God into the soul – called infused contemplation or mystical theology. God secretly teaches the soul and instructs it in perfection of love, without its doing anything. It is the loving wisdom of God, and He prepares it for the union of love with God. This Divine wisdom is night and darkness for the soul, and affliction and torment. When this pure light assails the soul, in order to expel its impurity, the soul feels itself to be so impure and miserable that it believes God to be against it, and things that it has set itself up against God.

Existence | Life | Life | Love | Merit | Soul | War | Worth |

Saint Vincent de Paul

A great good is worth being long desired.

Merit |

Saint Vincent de Paul

Our Lord is pleased to deprive us of temporal goods; may it please His Divine Goodness to give us spiritual ones!

Grace | Lord | Merit | Order | Suffering | Virtue | Virtue | Wants |

Saint Vincent de Paul

Peace is worth far more than anything they might take from you.

Merit |

Saint Vincent de Paul

It is not easy to find perfect men in whom there is nothing to criticize.

God | Grace | Life | Life | Merit | Nothing | Wonder | God |

Saint Vincent de Paul

Restlessness usually stems from pride and from being discontented with one's lot in life.

Action | Giving | Merit | Obedience |

Samuel Butler

Belief like any other moving body follows the path of least resistance.

Difficulty | Merit | Money | People | Will |

Samuel Johnson, aka Doctor Johnson

It is not true that people are naturally equal for no two people can be together for even a half an hour without one acquiring an evident superiority over the other.

Greatness | Influence | Light | Merit |

Simone de Beauvoir, fully Simone-Ernestine-Lucie-Marie Bertrand de Beauvoir

It is for man to establish the reign of liberty in the midst of the world of the given. To gain the supreme victory, it is necessary, for one thing, that by and through their natural differentiation men and women unequivocally affirm their brotherhood.

Absolute | Anarchy | Ethics | Existence | Freedom | Heart | Individual | Law | Man | Means | Merit | Oppression | Power | Relationship | Sense | Virtue | Virtue | Wisdom | World | Value |

Alexander Fleming, fully Sir Alexander Fleming

It has been demonstrated that a species of penicillium produces in culture a very powerful antibacterial substance which affects different bacteria in different degrees. Generally speaking it may be said that the least sensitive bacteria are the Gram-negative bacilli, and the most susceptible are the pyogenic cocci ... In addition to its possible use in the treatment of bacterial infections penicillin is certainly useful... for its power of inhibiting unwanted microbes in bacterial cultures so that penicillin insensitive bacteria can readily be isolated.

Chance | Literature | Merit | Neglect | Observation | Study | Truth | Work |

Thérèse de Lisieux, fully Saint Thérèse of Lisieux. born Marie-Françoise-Thérèse Martin NULL

All the Saints have understood this, and more especially perhaps those who have enlightened the world with the luminous teaching of the Gospel. Was it not from prayer that Saint Paul, Saint Augustine, Saint Thomas Aquinas, Saint John of the Cross, Saint Teresa and so many other friends of God drew that wondrous science which enraptures the greatest intellects?

Day | Fear | Heart | Love | Merit | Suffering | Will |