We manage to swallow flesh only because we do not think of the cruel and sinful thing that we do. Cruelty... is a fundamental sin, and admits of no arguments or nice distinctions. If only we do not allow our heart to grow callous, it protests against cruelty, is always clearly heard; and yet we go on perpetrating cruelties easily, merrily, all of us - in fact, anyone who does not join in is dubbed a crank
A poet's work is to name the unnameable,
to point at frauds, to take sides, start arguments,
shape the world, and stop it going to sleep.
A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to fear. The traitor is the plague.
Nothing does reason more right, than the coolness of those that offer it: For Truth often suffers more by the heat of its defenders, than from the arguments of its opposers.
To invoke solely the weaker arguments and yet triumph is a talent worth more than a hundred thousand drachmae.
A lot of the arguments about religion going on at the moment spring from a rather inept understanding of religious truth Our notion changed during the early modern period when we became convinced that the only path to any kind of truth was reason. That works beautifully for science but doesn't work so well for the humanities. Religion is really an art form and a struggle to find value and meaning amid the ghastly tragedy of human life.
Without any delusive representation of images or phantasms, I am most certain that I am, and that I know and delight in this. In respect of these truths, I am not at all afraid of the arguments of the Academicians, who say, What if you are deceived? For if I am deceived, I am. For he who is not, cannot be deceived; and if I am deceived, by this same token I am. And since I am if I am deceived, how am I deceived in believing that I am? for it is certain that I am if I am deceived. Since, therefore, I, the person deceived, should be, even if I were deceived, certainly I am not deceived in this knowledge that I am. And, consequently, neither am I deceived in knowing that I know. For, as I know that I am, so I know this also, that I know. And when I love these two things, I add to them a certain third thing, namely, my love, which is of equal moment. For neither am I deceived in this, that I love, since in those things which I love I am not deceived; though even if these were false, it would still be true that I loved false things. For how could I justly be blamed and prohibited from loving false things, if it were false that I loved them? But, since they are true and real, who doubts that when they are loved, the love of them is itself true and real? Further, as there is no one who does not wish to be happy, so there is no one who does not wish to be. For how can he be happy, if he is nothing?
In comedy laughter settles all arguments.
I really do not know, Socrates, how to express what I mean. For somehow or other our arguments, on whatever ground we rest them, seem to turn round and walk away from us.
Nothing requires a greater
effort of thought than arguments to
justify the rule of non-thought.
Any fact is better established
by two or three good testimonies
than by a thousand arguments.
Silence is one of the hardest
arguments to refute.
The strongest arguments prove nothing so long as the conclusions are not verified by experience. Experimental science is the queen of sciences and the goal of all speculation.
Only those afraid of the truth seek to silence debate, intimidate those with whom they disagree, or slander their ideological counterparts. Those who know they are right have no reason to stifle debate because they realize that all opposing arguments will ultimately be overcome by fact.
Men may spurn our appeals, reject our message, oppose our arguments, despise our persons, but they are helpless against our prayers.
My spirit is no longer what it was. Vaguely I seek, everywhere. I must see things with all their consequences, and right to their source. Against all the chains of facts I must have long arguments to bring; and the world's chaos requires an interpretation equally terrible.
We think about what to do, and muster considerations and arguments in favor of one course or another. How are we to think about that?
What proofs other than negative have we that the animal is without a surviving, if not immortal, soul? On strictly scientific grounds we can adduce as many arguments pro as contra. To express it clearer, neither man nor animal can offer either proof or disproof of the survival of their souls after death. And from the point of view of scientific experience, it is impossible to bring that which has no objective existence under the cognizance of any exact law of science.
When the liberal teaching became dominant, as is the case with most victorious causes, good arguments became less necessary; and the original good arguments, which were difficult, were replaced by plausible simplificationsor by nothing. The history of liberal thought since Locke and Smith has been one of almost unbroken decline in philosophic substance.
If the noble and the sacred cannot find serious expression in democracy, its choiceworthiness becomes questionable. These are the arguments, the special pleading of the reactionaries, the disinherited of the ancien rgime.
When the liberal, or what came to be called the utilitarian, teaching became dominant, as is the case with most victorious causes, good arguments became less necessary; the original good arguments, which were difficult, were replaced by plausible simplifications- or by nothing.