Misc quotes regarding a) religion and b) the limited ability of humans to understand their world

July 7, 2006 | By | 4 Replies More

In my opinion, these are two topics that should always be discussed together.  I’ve collected these quotes over the years:

Heaven: “a place so inane, so dull, so useless, so miserable, that nobody has ever ventured to describe a whole day in heaven, though plenty of people have described a day at the seaside.” –George Bernard Shaw 

Theist and atheist: the fight between them is as to whether God shall be called God or shall have some other name.  –Willard R. Espy

“We don’t know a millionth of one percent about anything.” — Thomas Alva Edison

“I do not feel obliged to believe that same God who endowed us with the sense, reason, and intellect, had intended for us to forgo their use.” –Galileo Galilei

“I believe in God, only I spell it Nature.” –Frank Lloyd Wright

“I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do, because I notice it always coincides with their own desires.” — Susan B. Anthony

“It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.” – Albert Einstein

It has been said that man is a rational animal. All my life I have been searching for evidence which could support this. –Bertrand Russell

Religion is a monumental chapter in the history of human egotism. –William James

If a kid asks where rain comes from, I think a cute thing to tell him is “God is crying.”  And if he asks why God is crying, another cute thing to tell him is, “Probably because of something you did.” –Jack Handey, Deep Thoughts

What a distressing contrast there is between the radiant intelligence of the child and the feeble mentality of the average adult. –Sigmund Freud

To make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe. –Carl Sagan

“Believe in God? We can fix that.”  (t-shirt)    

I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose purposes are modeled after our own — a God, in short, who is but a reflection of human frailty. Neither can I believe that the individual survives the death of his body, although feeble souls harbor such thoughts through fear or ridiculous egotism. –Albert Einstein

Man is the only animal that has the true religion—several of them.  –Mark Twain

“Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law.” –Thomas Jefferson

Enemies of truth. Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies.  –Nietzsche (Human all too Human, sec 483)

The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one. –George Bernard Shaw

Madness is rare in individuals—but in groups, parties, nations and ages it is the rule.  –-Nietzsche (Beyond Good & Evil #156)

If God has spoken, why is the world not convinced? –Percy Bysshe Shelley, English poet

Just beyond experience!– Even great spirits have only their five fingers breadth of experience – just beyond it their thinking ceases and their endless empty space and stupidity begins.  –Nietzsche (Daybreak, s. 564)

Every day people are straying away from the church and going back to God.  –Lenny Bruce.

Churches are country clubs with steeples.  –Anon.

I believe in Spinoza’s God, Who reveals Himself in the lawful harmony of the world, not in a God Who concerns Himself with the fate and the doings of mankind.  –Albert Einstein

How many wars have agnostics started?  Erich Vieth

Why be afraid of the possibility that you might not exist after you die?   That’s the way it was before you were born, and it wasn’t bad at all.  Erich Vieth

The cemetery is full of indispensable people. –Charles De Gaulle


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Category: Quotes, Religion

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

Comments (4)

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  1. Edgar Montrose says:

    (On going to war over religion) "You're basically killing each other to see who's got the better imaginary friend." — Richard Jeni

  2. AlexPgp says:

    Um, you wouldn't happen to have a cite to the original De Gaulle quote (i.e., in French), would you?

    Interesting post.


  3. Erich Vieth says:

    Alex: Sorry . . . I've found the De Gualle quote all over the Internet, but I never did notice the original quote in French. I do think of the English version almost every time I pass a cemetery. I wonder whether it's morbid of me or whether it's just good medicine.

  4. Bill Parker says:

    Actually, this is an old French proverb which I first heard from my French grandfather on my mother's side. I believe the standard form is "Les cimetieres sont remplis de gens irremplaçables." It has been attributed to several others before Gen. de Gaulle, included Georges Clemenceau, Prime Minister of France during World War I. Recently I have seen it attributed to Denis Langlois, the race walker, in slightly different form. In any case, it goes back long before de Gaulle, who had a tendency to take credit for everything!

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