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Bertrand Russell Quotes and Sayings

I hope you find great value in these Quotes by Bertrand Russell from my large collection of motivational and inspirational quotes and sayings.

If an opinion contrary to your own makes you angry,
that is a sign that you are subconsciously aware
of having no good reason for thinking as you do.
- Bertrand Russell

Related topics: Wisdom Life Human-Nature Psychology Cynical Deep

To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom.
- Bertrand Russell

One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown
is the belief that one's work is terribly important.
- Bertrand Russell

Conventional people are roused to fury
by departure from convention,
largely because they regard such departure
as a criticism of themselves.
- Bertrand Russell

 

A widespread belief is more often likely
to be foolish than sensible.
- Bertrand Russell

Collective fear stimulates herd instinct,
and tends to produce ferocity toward
those who are not regarded as members of the herd.
- Bertrand Russell

The only thing that will redeem mankind is cooperation.
- Bertrand Russell

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Neither a man nor a crowd nor a nation
can be trusted to act humanely
or to think sanely under the influence of a great fear.
- Bertrand Russell

I am firm; YOU are obstinate; HE is a pig-headed fool.
- Bertrand Russell

The whole problem with the world is that
fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves,
but wiser people so full of doubts.
- Bertrand Russell

The fundamental defect of fathers, in our competitive society,
is that they want their children to be a credit to them.
- Bertrand Russell

Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons.
- Bertrand Russell

Patriots always talk of dying for their country and
never of killing for their country.
- Bertrand Russell

Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something;
in the absence of good grounds for belief,
he will be satisfied with bad ones.
- Bertrand Russell

It is the things for which there is no evidence
that are believed with passion.
- Bertrand Russell

To fear love is to fear life, and those who fear life
are already three parts dead.
- Bertrand Russell

The place of the father in the modern suburban family is a very small one,
particularly if he plays golf.
- Bertrand Russell

War does not determine who is right -
only who is left.
- Bertrand Russell

I would never die for my beliefs because I might be wrong.
- Bertrand Russell

Freedom of opinion can only exist when the government thinks itself secure.
- Bertrand Russell

Reason is a harmonising, controlling force rather than a creative one.
- Bertrand Russell

Democracy is the process by which people choose the
man who'll get the blame.
- Bertrand Russell

The fundamental concept in social science is Power,
in the same sense in which Energy is the fundamental concept in physics.
- Bertrand Russell

Men who are unhappy, like men who sleep badly,
are always proud of the fact.
- Bertrand Russell

Extreme hopes are born from extreme misery.
- Bertrand Russell

The secret to happiness is to face the fact that the world is horrible.
- Bertrand Russell

Right discipline consists, not in external compulsion,
but in the habits of mind which lead spontaneously
to desirable rather than undesirable activities.
- Bertrand Russell

Liberty is the right to do what I like;
license,
the right to do what you like.
- Bertrand Russell

So far as I can remember, there is not one word in
the Gospels in praise of intelligence.
- Bertrand Russell

Marriage is for women the commonest mode of livelihood,
and the total amount of undesired sex endured by women
is probably greater in marriage than in prostitution.
- Bertrand Russell

What is wanted is not the will to believe,
but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite.
- Bertrand Russell

Work is of two kinds: first, altering the position
of matter at or near the earth's surface relative to other matter;
second,
telling other people to do so.
- Bertrand Russell

Against my will, in the course of my travels,
the belief that everything worth knowing was known
at Cambridge gradually wore off.
In this respect my travels were very useful to me.
- Bertrand Russell

A sense of duty is useful in work but offensive in personal relations.
People wish to be liked, not to be endured with patient resignation.
- Bertrand Russell

Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong,
have governed my life: the longing for love,
the search for knowledge, and unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind.
- Bertrand Russell

The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no
evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd.
- Bertrand Russell

Religions that teach brotherly love have been used
as an excuse for persecution,
and our profoundest scientific insight is made into
a means of mass destruction.
- Bertrand Russell

Obscenity is whatever happens to shock some elderly and ignorant magistrate.
- Bertrand Russell

To acquire immunity to eloquence is of the utmost importance
to the citizens of a democracy.
- Bertrand Russell

To understand a name you must be acquainted with the
particular of which it is a name.
- Bertrand Russell

It seems to be the fate of idealists to obtain what
they have struggled for in a form which destroys their ideals.
- Bertrand Russell

When the intensity of emotional conviction subsides,
a man who is in the habit of reasoning will search
for logical grounds in favour of the belief which he finds in himself.
- Bertrand Russell

To teach how to live without certainty and yet without
being paralysed by hesitation is perhaps the chief thing that philosophy,
in our age, can do for those who study it.
- Bertrand Russell

In America everybody is of the opinion that he has no social superiors,
since all men are equal, but he does not admit that
he has no social inferiors,
for, from the time of Jefferson onward,
the doctrine that all men are equal applies only upwards,
not downwards.
- Bertrand Russell

The observer, when he seems to himself to be observing a stone,
is really, if physics is to be believed,
observing the effects of the stone upon himself.
- Bertrand Russell

I remain convinced that obstinate addiction to ordinary
language in our private thoughts is one of the main
obstacles to progress in philosophy.
- Bertrand Russell

A happy life must be to a great extent a quiet life,
for it is only in an atmosphere of quiet that true joy dare live.
- Bertrand Russell

No; we have been as usual asking the wrong question.
It does not matter a hoot what the mockingbird on the chimney is singing.
The real and proper question is: Why is it beautiful?
- Bertrand Russell

If all our happiness is bound up entirely in our personal
circumstances it is difficult not to demand of life
more than it has to give.
- Bertrand Russell

The theoretical understanding of the world,
which is the aim of philosophy, is not a matter of
great practical importance to animals,
or to savages, or even to most civilised men.
- Bertrand Russell

Awareness of universals is called conceiving,
and a universal of which we are aware is called a concept.
- Bertrand Russell

A process which led from the amoeba to man appeared
to the philosophers to be obviously a progress though
whether the amoeba would agree with this opinion is not known.
- Bertrand Russell

Both in thought and in feeling, even though time be real,
to realise the unimportance of time is the gate of wisdom.
- Bertrand Russell

All movements go too far.
- Bertrand Russell

Order, unity, and continuity are human inventions,
just as truly as catalogues and encyclopedias.
- Bertrand Russell

The world is full of magical things patiently waiting
for our wits to grow sharper.
- Bertrand Russell

Life is nothing but a competition to be the criminal rather than the victim.
- Bertrand Russell

One should respect public opinion insofar
as is necessary to avoid starvation and keep out of prison,
but anything that goes beyond this
is voluntary submission to an unnecessary tyranny.
- Bertrand Russell

Sin is geographical.
- Bertrand Russell

The point of philosophy is to start with something
so simple as not to seem worth stating,
and to end with something so paradoxical that no one will believe it.
- Bertrand Russell

We are faced with the paradoxical fact that education
has become one of the chief obstacles to intelligence and freedom of thought.
- Bertrand Russell

Ethics is in origin the art of recommending to others
the sacrifices required for cooperation with oneself.
- Bertrand Russell

The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge.
- Bertrand Russell

Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion,
for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric.
- Bertrand Russell

Boredom is...
a vital problem for the moralist, since half the sins
of mankind are caused by the fear of it.
- Bertrand Russell

Most people would sooner die than think;
in fact,
they do so.
- Bertrand Russell

Man needs, for his happiness, not only the enjoyment of this or that,
but hope and enterprise and change.
- Bertrand Russell

The degree of one's emotions varies inversely with
one's knowledge of the facts.
- Bertrand Russell

Men are born ignorant, not stupid.
They are made stupid by education.
- Bertrand Russell

The coward wretch whose hand and heart Can bear to torture aught below,
Is ever first to quail and start From the slightest pain or equal foe.
- Bertrand Russell

Contempt for happiness is usually contempt for other people's happiness,
and is an elegant disguise for hatred of the human race.
- Bertrand Russell


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