Thursday, March 15, 2007

Perspectives on Ideas March 15, 2007

Character (continued)
481 Johnson: …he who is chopping off his own fingers may soon proceed to chop off those of other people. Boswell, Life of Johnson, Vol. 1.

628 Johnson: Depend upon it, Sir, vivacity is much an art, and depends greatly on habit. Boswell, Life of Johnson, Vol. 1.

947 In certain men, digestion and sex absorb the vital force, and the stronger these are, the individual is so much weaker. Emerson, The Conduct of Life: Fate.

958 But every jet of chaos which threatens to exterminate us is convertible by intellect into wholesome force. Emerson, The Conduct of Life: Fate.

960 A man must thank his defects, and stand in some terror of his talents. Emerson, The Conduct of Life: Fate.

1025 He [man of the world] does not make a speech; he takes a low business-tone, avoids all brag, is nobody, dresses plainly, promises not at all, performs much, speaks in monosyllables, hugs his fact. Emerson, The Conduct of Life: Culture.

1044 A calm and resolute bearing, a polished speech, an embellishment of trifles, and the art of hiding all uncomfortable feelings, are essential to the courtier. Emerson, The Conduct of Life: Behavior.

1199 James Nayor: “There is a spirit which I feel…that delights to do no evil, nor to revenge any wrong, but delights to endure all things…its hope…to outlive all wrath and contention…exultation and cruelty…sees to the end of all temptations…bears no evil in itself, so it conceives none in…any other…if… betrayed… bears it….” Emerson, Uncollected Prose.

576 The men of fine parts protect themselves by solitude, or by courtesy, or by satire, or by an acid worldly manner, each concealing, as best he can, his incapacity for useful association, but they want either love or self-reliance. Emerson, Nominalist and Realist.

693 …human strength is not in extremes, but in avoiding extremes. Emerson, Representative Men: Montaigne, or The Skeptic.

754 Goethe: “I have never heard of any crime which I might not have committed.”

836 [The English] …believe that where there is no enjoyment of life, there can be no vigor and art in speech or thought: that your merry heart goes all the way, your sad one tires in a mile. Emerson, English Traits.

842 …Of Baron Vere: “Had one seen him returning from a victory, he would by his silence have suspected that he had lost the day; and, had he beheld him in retreat, he would have [thought] him a conqueror by the cheerfulness of his spirit.” Emerson, English Traits.

62 Character is higher than intellect. Emerson, The American Scholar.

76 He who does a good deed is ennobled. Emerson, Divinity College Address.

76 He who does a mean deed is by the action itself contracted. Emerson, Divinity College Address.

77 ...the least attempt to make a good impression, a favorable appearance--will instantly vitiate the effect. Emerson, Divinity College Address.

77 So much benevolence as a man hath, so much life hath he. Emerson, Divinity College Address.

413 The difference between talents and character is adroitness to keep the old and trodden ground, and power and courage to make a new road to new and better goals. Emerson, Circles.

495 He conquers, because his arrival alters the face of affairs. Emerson, Character.

315 Sancho: That’s the sort of love I’ve heard them preach about, and they add that we ought to love our Lord for Himself alone, without being driven to it by hope of glory or the fear of punishment; but speaking for myself, I’m all for serving him for what he can do for me. Miguel de Cervantes, Don Quixote of La Mancha. Part One: 1605.

754 Don Quixote to the Ecclesiastic: My intentions are always directed toward virtuous ends, to do good to all and evil to none…[and] if he who so intends, so acts, and so lives deserves to be called an idiot…. Miguel de Cervantes, Don Quixote of La Mancha. Part Two: 1615.

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