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Some Wise Words from Some Wise People About Wisdom

Updated on October 4, 2008

The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty; not knowing what comes next.

-Ursula K. LeGuin

The true beloveds of this world are in their lover's eyes lilacs opening, ship lights, school bells, a landscape, remembered conversations, friends, a child's Sunday, lost voices, one's favorite suit, autumn and all seasons, memory, yes, it being the earth and water of existence, memory.

-Truman Capote (Other Voices, Other Rooms, 1948)

Your true traveller finds boredom rather agreeable than painful. It is the symbol of his liberty - his excessive freedom. He accepts his boredom, when it comes, not merely philosophically, but almost with pleasure.

-Aldous Huxley

History is a race between education and catastrophe.

-H. G. Wells

Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.

-Abraham Lincoln

The ideals which have lighted my way, and time after time have given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been Kindness, Beauty, and Truth. The trite subjects of human efforts, possessions, outward success, luxury have always seemed to me contemptible.

-Albert Einstein

The lion and the calf shall lie down together but the calf won't get much sleep.

-Woody Allen

Thought: Why does man kill? He kills for food. And not only food: frequently there must be a beverage.

-Woody Allen

Wisdom begins in wonder.


The wisest mind has something yet to learn.

-George Santayana

Wisdom is what's left after we've run out of personal opinions.

-Cullen Hightower

The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.


Force without wisdom falls of its own weight.


Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.

-Immanuel Kant

Those who wish to appear wise among fools, among the wise seem foolish.


Wisdom outweighs any wealth.


The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.

-William Shakespeare

The mind is a strange machine which can combine the materials offered to it in the most astonishing ways, but without material from the external world it is powerless, and unlike the sausage machine it must seize its material for itself, since events only become experiences through the interest we take in them; if they do not interest us, we are making nothing of them. The man, therefore, whose attention is turned within finds nothing worthy of his notice, whereas the man whose attention is turned outward can find within, in those rare moments when he examines his soul, the most varied and interesting assortment of ingredients being dissected and recombined into beautiful and instructive patterns.

-Bertrand Russell (The Conquest of Happiness)

FREE your MIND, your ASS will FOLLOW.

-George Clinton

A successful person is a dreamer whom someone believed in.

-Unknown Source

If you are lonely when you are alone, you are in bad company.

-Jean-Paul Sartre

Things that were hard to bear are sweet to remember.

-Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Deep doubts, deep wisdom; small doubts, little wisdom.

-Chinese Proverb

To me, being an intellectual doesn't mean knowing about intellectual issues; it means taking pleasure in them.

-Chinua Achebe

Many a crown of wisdom is but the golden chamberpot of success, worn with pompous dignity.

-Joey Adams

There are many methods for predicting the future. For example, you can read horoscopes, tea leaves, tarot cards, or crystal balls. Collectively, these methods are known as 'nutty methods.' Or you can put well-researched facts into sophisticated computer models, more commonly referred to as "a complete waste of time.

-Scott Adams

Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.

-Scott Adams

A doubtful friend is worse than a certain enemy. Let a man be one thing or the other, and we then know how to meet him.


The greatest use of a life is to spend it for something that will outlast it.


Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away.


And in the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years.

-Abraham Lincoln

He not busy being born is busy dying.

-Bob Dylan

The quality of a person's life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor.

-Vince Lombardi

If a man is called to be a streetsweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the host of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great streetsweeper who did his job well.

-Martin Luther King

I'd like people to remember me for a diligent expert workman. I think a poet is a workman. I think Shakespeare was a workman. And God's a workman. I don't think there's anything better than a workman.

-Laurence Olivier

Life is what happens to you while you are busy making other plans.

-John Lennon

The size of a man (his wisdom) can be measured by the size of the things that make him angry.

-J.K. Morley

Common sense is not so common.


No man was ever wise by chance.


The wise person questions himself, the fool others.

-Henri Arnold

We may think God wants actions of a certain kind, but God wants people of a certain kind.

-C.S. Lewis


Submit a Comment

  • profile image


    9 years ago

    Yes I agree

  • St.James profile imageAUTHOR


    9 years ago from Lurking Around Florida

    Thank you Valdy! I'm looking forward to seeing your list of quotable quotes.

  • vaidy19 profile image


    9 years ago from Chennai, India

    Hi St James,

    Who doesn't love great quotes? I felt like writing some of my own and egging others on to try the same. Watch out! Thanks for the inspiration.


  • SandraBean profile image


    9 years ago from Canada

    Incredible hub! Some truly great quotes!

  • Lgali profile image


    10 years ago

    very good collection I like most is A successful person is a dreamer whom someone believed in.

  • Paraglider profile image

    Dave McClure 

    10 years ago from Kyle, Scotland

    Good collection. Plenty food for thought there.


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