We manipulate nature as if we were stuffing an Alsatian goose. We create new forms of energy; we make new elements; we kill crops; we wash brains. I can hear them in the dark sharpening their lasers.

Erwin Chargaff

The mind of the logical thinker goes so easily from one point to another that it is hard not to mistake motion for progress.

Margaret Collier Graham

A mirror has no heart but plenty of ideas.

Malcolm de Chazal

I think that human activity will have no appreciable effect upon humanity. Man is now only more active — not more happy, nor more wise — than he was six thousand years ago.

Edgar Allan Poe

The person and society are yoked, like mind and body. Arguing which is more important is like debating whether oxygen or hydrogen is the more essential property of water.

Marilyn Ferguson

Break with the outside world, live like a bear.

Gustave Flaubert

I am against nature. I don’t dig nature at all. I think nature is very unnatural. I think the truly natural things are dreams, which nature can’t touch with decay.

Bob Dylan

Be humble for you are made of dung. Be noble for you are made of stars.

Serbian proverb

Reb Bunam said, “You must imagine the evil spirit as a thug hovering over you with a raised hatchet to chop off your head.” “What if I can’t imagine it?” asked a Hasid. “That’s a sure sign that he has already chopped it off.”

A. J. Heschel

The view after seventy is breathtaking. What is lacking is someone, anyone, of the older generation to whom you can turn when you want to satisfy your curiosity about some detail of the landscape of the past. There is no longer any older generation. You have become it, while your mind was mostly on other matters.

William Maxwell

The most important thing I learned on Tralfamadore was that when a person dies he only appears to die. He is still very much alive in the past, so it is very silly for people to cry at his funeral. All moments, past, present, and future, always have existed, always will exist. The Tralfamadorians can look at all the different moments just the way we can look at a stretch of the Rocky Mountains, for instance. They can see how permanent all the moments are, and they can look at any moment that interests them. It is just an illusion we have here on earth that one moment follows another one, like beads on a string, and that once a moment is gone it is gone forever.

Kurt Vonnegut

Every morning and every evening, and whenever anything happens to you, keep on saying, “Thanks for everything. I have no complaint whatsoever.”


Since my house burned down, I now own a better view of the rising moon.


I do not believe that sheer suffering teaches. If suffering alone taught, then all the world would be wise, since everyone suffers. To suffering must be added mourning, understanding, patience, love, openness, and the willingness to remain vulnerable.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Rocks in the water don’t know the misery of rocks in the sun.

Haitian proverb

There are many fine things about nature, but it does no talking.

Chuang Chou

Great art picks up where nature ends.

Marc Chagall

He [Frank Lloyd Wright] and I walked up to the high ground [to a potential building site for a new home] where there was an old orchard above a pasture which faces north and has an endless view over the hills. He took one look and then peed and said, “Good spot,” and we walked down the hill back to the house.

Arthur Miller