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When we find a thinker reflecting or echoing an apparently erroneous, narrow, or even illogical thought that was popular or read more

When we find a thinker reflecting or echoing an apparently erroneous, narrow, or even illogical thought that was popular or authoritative in his time, we must never rule out the possibility that what we have discovered is not the limit of his vision but only an example of his deliberate rhetorical accommodation to reigning prejudice which he does not share but thinks it best not to expose.

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An empty head is not really empty; it is stuffed with rubbish. Hence the difficulty of forcing anything in to read more

An empty head is not really empty; it is stuffed with rubbish. Hence the difficulty of forcing anything in to an empty head.

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...ideas have a tendency to live lives of their own, and having become a part of tradition, they are very read more

...ideas have a tendency to live lives of their own, and having become a part of tradition, they are very difficult to root out. When summarized in a few neat words or phrases, these gems of wisdom become substitutes for thought, and gradually take on much of the status of revealed truth. Occasionally, some iconoclast sees fit to challenge one of them, and a brief flurry ensues, after which things go on about as before. It is easy to think of plenty of ideas that are passing, if they have not already passed, beyond the stage of effective discussion.

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Human reason can neither predict nor deliberately shape its own future. Its advances consist in finding out where it has read more

Human reason can neither predict nor deliberately shape its own future. Its advances consist in finding out where it has been wrong.

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Of all sexual aberrations, perhaps the most peculiar is chastity.

Of all sexual aberrations, perhaps the most peculiar is chastity.

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There couldn't be a society of people who didn't dream. They'd be dead in two weeks.

There couldn't be a society of people who didn't dream. They'd be dead in two weeks.

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Give light, and the darkness will disappear of itself.

Give light, and the darkness will disappear of itself.

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Social values in general are incrementally variable: neither safety, diversity, rational articulation, nor morality is categorically a "good thing" to read more

Social values in general are incrementally variable: neither safety, diversity, rational articulation, nor morality is categorically a "good thing" to have more of, without limits. All are subject to diminishing returns, and ultimately negative returns.

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The first thing a man will do for his ideals is lie.

The first thing a man will do for his ideals is lie.

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