Seventh House Communications logo.

Serious Quotes

The primary source of scientific thought is not reasoning, but the precise verification of an association originally supplied by the imagination.

Paul Claudel

To think clearly in human terms you have to be impelled by a poem.


Truth is only believed when someone has invented it well.

George Santayana

In art truth is suggested by false means.

Edgar Degas

During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.

George Orwell

The problem with fiction is that it must seem credible, while reality seldom is.

Isabel Allende, Paula

A human being is a part of the whole, called by us 'universe', a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separate from the rest — a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal decisions and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty.

Albert Einstein

In the provence of the mind, what we believe to be true either is true or becomes true within certain limits, to be found experientially or experimentally. These limits are beliefs to be transcended.

John C. Lilly, The Centre of the Cyclone

Physical concepts are free creations of the human mind and are not, however it may seem, uniquely determined by the external world. In an endeavour to understand reality we are somewhat like a man trying to understand the mechanisms of a closed watch. He sees the face and the moving hands, even hears the ticking. But he has no way of opening the case. If he is ingenious he may form some picture of a mechanism which could be responsible for all the things he observes, but he may never be quite sure his picture is the only one which could explain his observations. He will never be able to compare his picture with the real mechanism and he cannot even imagine the possibility or the meaning of such a comparison.

Albert Einstein, The Evolution of Physics

We are more readily betrayed by our certainties than by our doubts and curiosities.

Morris West, character Anton Drexler in Lazarus

A reasonable man adapts to the conditions that surround him. The unreasonable man adapts surrounding conditions to himself. All progress depends on the unreasonable man.

George Bernard Shaw

Security is mostly a superstition… It does not exist in nature… Life is either a glorious adventure or nothing.

Helen Keller

Perfect health is the natural ability of any soul to experience precisely the symptoms that it most needs at any given moment, to respond to those symptoms and move on to the next experience.

Paul Solomon

Too tired for company, you seek a solitude you are tired to fill.

Dag Hammerskjold

We perfected and practise Foretelling…to exhibit the perfect uselessness of knowing the answer to the wrong question.

Ursula le Guin, character Faxe in The Left Hand of Darkness

If seeds had goals, there wouldn't be very many flowers.

Al Huang, Embrace Tiger, Return to Mountain

I know that you believe you understand what you think I said; but I am not sure you realise that what you heard is not what I meant.

Author unknown

Experience is not what happens to you; it is what you do with what happens to you.

Aldous Huxley

Some people see things as they are and ask "Why?". I dream of things that aren't and ask "Why not?"

George Bernard Shaw

Sometimes we make mistakes on purpose, to teach ourselves something important.

Jane Roberts, character Cyprus in The Education of Oversoul 7

One is fated to the degree that one is unconscious.

We can bear the unpleasant much more easily that we can the inconsequential.

Liz Green, March 1979

I do not want to create a fuss!

Charles Darwin

It is because the work of a master cannot be copied that one can learn from him.

Wolfgang Kretschner Jr.

If you have to search for the forest of fantasy, you have lost the way.

James Matthew Barrie