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Cake doing yoga

… some quotations from famous people, friends and strangers that I find very insightful and that give me meaning and guidance for life …

… to be expanded as I grow up learn ☺


An end in terror is preferable to terror without end.
— Ferdinand von Schill

Human society is inconceivable unless words are to some extent bonds.
— Christopher Hitchens

Do not imagine that you can escape judgment if you rob people with a false prospectus rather than with a knife.
— Christopher Hitchens

☆ .•:*¨* *¨*:•.☆ A friend is someone who knows the melody of your heart and will sing it to you when you forgot. ☆ .•:*¨* *¨*:•.☆
— Stefanie Deed, profile on Second Life, 2010

If I can’t understand something, then it’s probably nonsense.
— Stephen Wolfram, New Scientist, 2009

We don't see things as they are; we see things as we are.
— Anais Nin

Sometimes people put up walls not to keep others out … but to see who cares enough to tear them down.
— Unknown, seen on a Second Life profile

Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence.
— Napoleon

I prefer people who act like assholes right from the start to those who turn into assholes later on.
— Bailey Toland in an e-mail, 2010

It is my experience that people who cannot make the distinction between using abstractions and actually thinking in abstractions are the ones who generalise more.
— Meike Heston in a conversation, 2010

Experience is a good school. But the fees are high.
— Heinrich Heine

By gaining the good and rejecting what is wrong, it is our desire that we’ll compare favourably with other lands abroad.
— Emperor Meiji in a poem

Wissen se wat, junger Mann – jewählt is jewählt.
— Konrad Adenauer to journalist Gerhard Löwenthal, after his election as federal chancellor in 1949

There are two things children should get from their parents: roots and wings.
— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

A child with loving parents and a house full of books can never be poor.
— Unknown

Love is the only thing that grows when shared.
— Maria Luise Stangl

And everybody should be ashamed who uses the wonders of science and engineering without thinking and having mentally realized not more of it than a cow realizes of the botany of the plants which it eats with pleasure.
— Albert Einstein

Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounding yourself with assholes.
— William Gibson

Und unsere heutige Sensibilität […] ist durch eine humanistische Geisteshaltung geboten, die Moral nicht auf Macht, Tradition, oder religiöse Praxis gründet, sondern auf das Leiden und Wohlergehen empfindungsfähiger Individuen.
— Steven Pinker, “The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined”, 2011

The shabbiness of people’s thought, and their simple inability to follow a train of thought further than their next feeling of self-satisfaction, is a bit trying at times.
— Eric MacDonald, on his blog Choice in Dying, 2012

To demarcate [words in way that changes the meaning] is simply to speak a different language than everyone else. And I do not accept semantic games like that. […] We need to use words as they are actually used and understood. We can correct errors and inconsistencies and make distinctions. But we can’t try to foist an alien language on people.
— Richard Carrier

Saying someone shouldn’t be gay because it’s against your religion makes as much sense as saying someone shouldn’t eat a donut because you’re on a diet.
— Found on the Internet, 2012

The institution of royalty in any form is an insult to the human race.
— Mark Twain, 1888

It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old, they grow old because they stop pursuing dreams.
— Gabriel García Márquez

In an efficient free market each supplied packet soup is demanded and each demanded packet soup is supplied.
— Harald Stücker, 2012

First keep peace with yourself, then you can also bring peace to others.
— Thomas von Kempen

Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be.
— Thomas von Kempen

I dislike conflict, and even more than that I dislike one-dimensional caricatures and inaccurate stereotypes. I hate knowing what they think of me, hate feeling judged and looked down on. I’m sick of the boxes, I just want to live. But apparently that’s too much to ask.
— Libby Anne, 2014

Life is too short not to declare eclecticism, to freedom of selecting and discarding.
— Fernando Fernández-Savater Martín

Reliability is the precondition for trust.
— Wolfgang Schäuble, 2014

Before you assume, learn the facts.
Before you judge, understand why.
Before you hurt someone, feel.
Before you speak, think.
— Jose Sanchez

Meaning of life and how to live it

I believe that if, at the end of it all, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn't always know this, and am happy I lived long enough to find it out.
— Roger Ebert, dying and reflecting on life

Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.
— Marcus Aurelius (uncertain)

Wer hindert uns eigentlich daran das zu tun, was wir von anderen erwarten?
— Kurt Martin Magiera

Every person has the opportunity to improve at least one part of the world, namely themself.
— Paul Anton de Lagarde

If you want to improve the country,
you have to improve the provinces.
If you want to improve the provinces,
you have to improve the cities.
If you want to improve the cities,
you have to improve the families.
If you want to improve the families,
you have to improve your own family.
If you want to improve your own family,
you have to improve yourself.
— Asian wisdom

What we do every day is significant; we must make use of every opportunity we have to extend love, sympathy, and support to others, and we should never fail to live up to our highest ethical ideals.
— Ronald Lindsay, 2012

One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today.
— Dale Carnegie

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.
— Anne Frank

Fear less, hope more; Eat less, chew more; Whine less, breathe more; Talk less, say more; Love more, and all good things will be yours. It's simple.
— Unknown, seen on a Second Life profile

Don't be reckless with other people's hearts, don't put up with people who are reckless with yours.
— Mary Schmich, 1997

My advice to you in SL and RL is relax, enjoy and smile.
— Unknown, seen on a Second Life profile

Lack of confidence is a turnoff. Insecurity is a bitch and jealousy will kill you.
— Unknown, seen on a Second Life profile

Hütet euch jene schwächliche Resignation, von welcher der nächste Schritt zur Gleichgültigkeit führt, zu befördern oder sie gar hervorzurufen wollen.
— Wilhelm Raabe, Die Chronik der Sperlingsgasse

Frei durchgehen! Ist das nicht das Größte, was in diesem in Stricken und Banden liegenden Menschenleben gesagt werden kann?
— Wilhelm Raabe

The worst of all errors is systematic neutrality. It is not possible to keep the same distance from good and evil, because this same distance is already a form of evil.
— Blanco y Negro

Do not make a joke that costs you a friend. Unless the joke is better than the friend.
— N. O. Scarpi

It’s not enough to be a good person. You also have to show it.
— Honoré de Balzac

It is better to be approximately right than precisely wrong.
— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Be thankful for the smallest blessing, and you will be worthy to receive greater.
— Thomas von Kempen

The biggest mistake you can make in your life is to be always afraid of making a mistake.
— Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Minds are like parachutes. They only function when they are open.
— James Dewar

Manners [are] the aesthetic expression of morale.
— Asfa-Wossen Asserate, Focus magazine, 2012

One must have a tough mind, and a soft heart.
— Sophie Scholl

Do not let the behaviour of others destroy your inner peace.
— Dalai Lama

Nicht ärgern, nur wundern.
— Unbekannt

Stop feeling sorry for yourself, and you will be happy.
— Stephen Fry

If you want respect from others, you need to show respect.
— From a blog, 2013

There’s no need to waste our lives away worried about the way others will judge us. Somebody else’s opinions, thoughts, and feelings always say more about them than they do about us. And there’s no reason for us to waste away our live judging other people because all we're really doing is hurting ourselves […].
— Madeline H. Wyndzen, on her website “All mixed up” (

“Just living is not enough,” said the butterfly, “one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.”
— Hans Christian Andersen

Knowing: truth, facts, convictions and opinions;
communicating: discussion and debate

Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts.
— Unknown source

Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. Ideas must be distinct before reason can act upon them.
— Thomas Jefferson

One’s convictions should be proportional to one’s evidence. Pretending to be certain when one isn’t – indeed, pretending to be certain about propositions for which no evidence is even conceivable – is both an intellectual and a moral failing.
— Sam Harris, 2005

If you don't question yourself, and your own assumptions about everything, then you effectively haven't earned the right to question anyone else who disagrees with you.
— Krubozumo Nyankoye, commenting on the Pharyngula blog, 2010

What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence.
— Christopher Hitchens

The more vehemently an opinion is expressed, the more fragile is usually the foundation of facts on which it rests.
— Süddeutsche Zeitung, in „Die meisten Menschen überschätzen sich grandios“, 2013

In the age of information, ignorance is a choice.
— Unknown source

If you look for truth, you may find comfort in the end; if you look for comfort you will not get either comfort or truth, only soft soap and wishful thinking to begin, and in the end, despair.
— C. S. Lewis

Believing entails not knowing.
— J. L., 2013

Ideas do not deserve dignity; people deserve dignity.
— Peter Boghossian, 2013

It is the highest form of self-respect to admit our errors and mistakes and make amends for them. To make a mistake is only an error in judgment, but to adhere to it when it is discovered shows infirmity of character.
— Dale Turner

Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

There's nothing wrong with taking a leap of faith, provided you acknowledge that's what you're doing.
— Deborah Markus in an Internet essay

Remember kids, in order to maintain an untenable position, you have to be actively ignorant.
— Stephen Colbert

It is only when someone cannot defend his opinion, and is not interested in believing the truth, that he will attempt to stifle discussion with good manners. Those who take religion, politics and sex seriously do not adhere to the general prohibition on discussing these topics. And they do not take offence when they are shown to be wrong.
If you start to feel during a discussion, that you are not so much incorrect as insensitive, then you are probably dealing with a respectable bigot.
— Jamie Whyte, on the cover of “Bad Thoughts: A Guide to Clear Thinking”, 2003

If most of us are ashamed of shabby clothes and shoddy furniture let us be more ashamed of shabby ideas and shoddy philosophies.
— Albert Einstein

A scientific approach means knowing what one knows and what one doesn’t. Absolute or complete knowledge is unscientific.
— Karl Jaspers

The evil that is in the world almost always comes from ignorance, and good intentions may do as much harm as malevolence if they lack understanding.
— Albert Camus

In matters of conscience, the law of the majority has no place.
— Mahatma Gandhi

Stand up for what you believe in even if you are standing alone.
— Sophie Scholl


Contrary to current belief, transsexuals are not tormented by their condition: it is their condition, which prompts society to torment them.
— Sarah Seton in “Transsexualism: a Medical Retrospective”, 2008

Transsexualism is an identity disorder that happens to involve gender concomitantly. It has nothing whatever to do with sexual preference or life-style as with homosexuality.
— Sarah Seton in “Transsexualism: a Medical Retrospective”, 2008

Twin Peaks

Maybe that's our trouble, Ed. We never want to hurt anyone. We never just take what we want. There's a part of me that's beginning to think that … this is how it is when you get to the end of your life … and that you don't have anything to show for it.
— Norma Jennings

Do you have a judgement about that you’d like to express?
— Harold Smith

Anyone who sees the realism in Lynch truly understand poetry!
— Armond White

Moments of wonder

In 1637, French philosopher René Descartes became famous for saying “I think, therefore I am”. What he was trying to say was: If everything is in our brains, how do we know we exist? And the answer of course, is footprints.
— Philomena Cunk, 2014

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