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It may indeed prove to be far the most difficult and not the least important task for human reason rationally read more

It may indeed prove to be far the most difficult and not the least important task for human reason rationally to comprehend its own limitations. It is essential for the growth of reason that as individuals we should bow to forces and obey principles which we cannot hope fully to understand, yet on which the advance and even the preservation of civilization depend.

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The history of science knows scores of instances where an investigator was in the possession of all the important facts read more

The history of science knows scores of instances where an investigator was in the possession of all the important facts for a new theory but simply failed to ask the right questions.

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When you want to organize knowledge. you will be careful to base the classification upon essential qualities. You will thus read more

When you want to organize knowledge. you will be careful to base the classification upon essential qualities. You will thus derive classes in which the members have the greatest amount of resemblance to one another and the greatest amount of difference from the members of other classes. But suppose that, instead of organizing knowledge, you set out to organize ignorance and prejudice. You will then do precisely the opposite...You will keep the classification vague and flexible, so that it can be made to include just whatever individuals you choose.

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There are no chaste minds. Minds copulate wherever they meet.

There are no chaste minds. Minds copulate wherever they meet.

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...we are entitled to make almost any reasonable assumption, but should resist making conclusions until evidence requires that we do read more

...we are entitled to make almost any reasonable assumption, but should resist making conclusions until evidence requires that we do so.

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The seeds of great discoveries are constantly floating around, but they only take root in minds well prepared to receive read more

The seeds of great discoveries are constantly floating around, but they only take root in minds well prepared to receive them.

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From the saintly and single-minded idealist to the fanatic is often but a step.

From the saintly and single-minded idealist to the fanatic is often but a step.

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Our species is the only creative species, and it has only one creative instrument, the individual mind and spirit of read more

Our species is the only creative species, and it has only one creative instrument, the individual mind and spirit of a man. Nothing was ever created by two men. There are no good collaborations, whether in music, in art, in poetry, in mathematics, in philosophy. Once the miracle of creation has taken place, the group can build and extend it, but the group never invents anything. The preciousness lies in the lonely mind of a man.

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Fear comes from uncertainty. When we are absolutely certain, whether of our worth or our worthlessness, we are almost impervious read more

Fear comes from uncertainty. When we are absolutely certain, whether of our worth or our worthlessness, we are almost impervious to fear. Thus a feeling of utter worthlessness can be a source of courage.

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