“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.” Isaac Asimov
“The power of instruction is seldom of much efficacy, except in those happy dispositions where it is almost superfluous.” Edward Gibbon
“The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.” William Yeats
“It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” Upton Sinclair
“Too easy for beginners and too hard for experts” Vladimir Horowitz’s assessment of Mozart.
Samuelson on mainstream economics (at the time): “More can be less. Much of mathematical economics in the 1950s gained in elegance over old poor Pareto and Edward Chamberlain. But the fine garments sometimes achieved fit only by chopping off some real legs and arms. The theory of cones, polyhedra, and convex sets made possible “elementary” theorems and lemmas. But they seduced economists away from the phenomena of increasing returns to scale and nonconvex technology that lie at the heart of oligopoly problems and many real-world maximizing assignments. Easy victories over a science wrong opponents are hollow victories- at least almost always.”
“A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because … a new generation grows up that is familiar with it” M. Planck
“A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discover the value of life” Charles Darwin.
From Bertrand Russell
Conventional people are roused to fury by departure from convention, largely because they regard such departure as a criticism of themselves.
Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric.
In all affairs it’s a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted.
It is preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly.
Many a man will have the courage to die gallantly, but will not have the courage to say, or even to think, that the cause for which he is asked to die is an unworthy one.
Men are born ignorant, not stupid. They are made stupid by education.
Much that passes as idealism is disguised hatred or disguised love of power.
The degree of one’s emotions varies inversely with one’s knowledge of the facts.
The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd.
The most savage controversies are about matters as to which there is no good evidence either way.
The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.
There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge.
There is something feeble and a little contemptible about a man who cannot face the perils of life without the help of comfortable myths.
From Arthur Schopenhauer
“A man can be himself only so long as he is alone.”
“A man’s delight in looking forward to and hoping for some particular satisfaction is a part of the pleasure flowing out of it, enjoyed in advance. But this is afterward deducted, for the more we look forward to anything the less we enjoy it when it comes.”
“After your death you will be what you were before your birth.”
“All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.”
It is in the treatment of trifles that a person shows what they are.
Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see.
Wealth is like sea-water; the more we drink, the thirstier we become; and the same is true of fame.
From Albert Einstein
“Anything really new is invented only in one’s youth. Later one becomes more experience, more famous…..and more stupid”
“Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex…It takes a touch of genius, and a lot of courage, to move in the opposite direction.
“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new”
“The ideals which have lighted me on my way and time after time given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been Truth, Goodness, and Beauty. . . . The ordinary objects of human endeavour — property, outward success, luxury — have always seemed to me contemptible.”