William James Quotes

William James

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Better risk loss of truth than chance of error.

Categorized under Risk

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The moral flabbiness born of the exclusive worship of the Bitch-Goddess success. That - with the squalid cash interpretation put on the word success - is our national disease.

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The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook.

Categorized under Wisdom

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There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers.

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Human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives.

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The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes of mind.

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

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A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.

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There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers.

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

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If you want a quality, act as if you already had it.

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The greatest discovery of any generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitude.

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A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely re-arranging their prejudices.

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The stream of thought flows on; but most of its segments fall into the bottomless abyss of oblivion. Of some, no memory survives the instant of their passage. Of others, it is confined to a few moments, hours or days. Others, again, leave vestiges which are indestructible, and by means of which they may be recalled as long as life endures.

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The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook.

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The difference between a good man and a bad man is the choice of cause.

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Be not afraid of life. Believe that life is worth living, and your belief will help create the fact.

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The great use of life is to spend it for something that outlasts it.

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

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Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they

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I believe there is no source of deception in the investigation of nature which can compare with a fixed belief that certain kinds of phenomena are impossible.

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This life is worth living, we can say, since it is what we make it.

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

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The community stagnates without the impulse of the individual. The impulse dies away without the sympathy of the community.

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He who refuses to embrace a unique opportunity loses the prize as surely as if he had failed.

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There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers.

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A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.

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As a rule we disbelieve all the facts and theories for which we have no use.

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Human beings are born into this little span of life of which the best thing is its friendship and intimacies, and soon their places will know them no more, and yet they leave their friendships and intimacies with no cultivation, to grow as they will by the roadside, expecting them to "keep" by force of inertia.

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A genius is the man in whom you are least likely to find the power of attending to anything insipid or distasteful in itself. He breaks his engagements, leaves his letters unanswered, neglects his family duties incorrigibly, because he is powerless to turn his attention down and back from those more interesting trains of imagery with which his genius constantly occupies his mind.

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An idea, to be suggestive, must come to the individual with the force of revelation.

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There is only one thing that a philosopher can be relied on to do, and that is, to contradict other philosophers.

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We never fully grasp the import of any true statement until we have a clear notion of what the opposite untrue statement would be.

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Why should we think upon things that are lovely? Because thinking determines life. It is a common habit to blame life upon the environment. Environment modifies life but does not govern life. The soul is stronger than its surroundings.

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The whole drift of my education goes to persuade me that the world of our present consciousness is only one out of many worlds of consciousness that exist.

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