1. “When you have something to say, silence is a lie.”

2. “If you fulfill your obligations everyday, you don’t need to worry about the future.”

3. “I don’t think that you have any insight whatsoever into your capacity for good until you have some well-developed insight into your capacity for evil.”

4. “It took untold generations to get you where you are. A little gratitude might be in order.”

5. “You’re going to pay a price for every bloody thing you do and everything you don’t do.”

6. “If you can’t understand why someone is doing something, look at the consequences of their actions, whatever they might be, and then infer the motivations from their consequences.”

7. “You’re always looking for new information in the off chance that somebody who doesn’t agree with you will tell you something you couldn’t have figured out on your own! It’s a completely different way of looking at the world. It’s the antithesis of opinionated.”

8. “If you don’t say what you think, then you kill your unborn self.”

9. “To stand up straight with your shoulders back is with eyes wide open.”

10. “Humility is recognition of personal insufficiency and the willingness to learn.”

11. “Women select men. That makes them nature, because nature is what selects.”

12. “If you think tough men are dangerous, wait until you see what weak men are capable of.”

13. “If you’re going to insist on bending the world to your way, you better have your reasons.”

14. “The woman is the gatekeeper to reproductive success, and you can’t get more like nature than that. In fact, it’s the very definition of nature.”

15. “Love is the desire to see unnecessary suffering ameliorated.”

16. “To learn is to die voluntarily and be born again—in great ways and small.”

17. “You can only find out what you actually believe, rather than what you think you believe, by watching how you act. You simply don’t know what you believe before that. You are too complex to understand yourself.”

18. “Truth is the handmaiden of love.”

19. “Intolerance of others’ views—no matter how ignorant or incoherent they may be—is not simply wrong. In a world where there is no right or wrong, it is worse. It is a sign you are embarrassingly unsophisticated or possibly dangerous.”


20. “Don’t underestimate the power of vision and direction. These are irresistible forces, able to transform what might appear to be unconquerable obstacles into traversable pathways and expanding opportunities.”

21. “Choose your destination and articulate your being.”

22. “So, attend carefully to your posture. Quit drooping and hunching around. Speak your mind. Put your desires forward, as if you had a right to them—at least the same right as others. Walk tall and gaze forthrightly ahead. Dare to be dangerous. the serotonin to flow plentifully through the neural pathways desperate for its calming influence.”

23. “Our choices determine the destiny of the world. By making a choice, you alter the structure of reality.”

24. “Random wandering will not move you forward. It will instead disappoint and frustrate you, and make you anxious and unhappy, and hard to get along with; and then resentful, and then vengeful, and then worse.”

25. “The purpose of life, as far as I can tell, is to find a mode of being that’s so meaningful that the fact that life is suffering is no longer relevant.”

26. “You must determine where you are going in your life, because you cannot get there unless you move in that direction.”

27. “The better ambitions have to do with the development of character and ability, rather than status and power.”

28. “The successful among us delay gratification. The successful among us bargain with the future.”

29. “Consciousness is a mystery that faces the mystery of potential and transforms it into actuality. We do that with every choice we make.”

30. “We believe that in reducing the scope and importance of our errors, we are properly humble. In truth, we are merely unwilling to bear the weight of our true responsibility.”

31. “What you aim at determines what you see.”

32. “The secret to your existence is right in front of you. It manifests itself as all those things you know you should do, but are avoiding.”

33. “We must each adopt as much responsibility as possible for individual life, society and the world.”

34. “You should never give up the better that resides within for the security you already have, and certainly not when you have already caught a glimpse—an undeniable glimpse—of something beyond.”

35. “You must determine where you are going, so that you can bargain for yourself; so that you don’t end up resentful, vengeful, and cruel.”

36. “It would be good to make the world a better place.”

37. “Do you want to make your children safe or strong?”

38. “Dreams shed light on the dim places where reason itself has yet to voyage.”

39. “It’s a luxury to pursue what makes you happy; it’s a moral obligation to pursue what you find meaningful.”

40. “To straddle that fundamental duality is to be balanced—to have one foot firmly planted in order and security, and the other in chaos, possibility, growth, and adventure.”

41. “Aim to be the person at your father’s funeral that everyone, in their grief and misery, can rely on.”

42. “There’s a worthy and noble ambition—strength in the face of adversity.”

43. “Ask yourself what you would require to be motivated to undertake the job, honestly, and listen to the answer.”

44. “We transform the manifold possibilities of the future into the actualities of past and present.”

45. “If you surround yourself with people who support your upward aim, they will not tolerate your cynicism and destructiveness. They will instead encourage you when you do good for yourself and others and punish you carefully when you do not.”

46. “You might be winning, but you’re not growing; and growing might be the most important form of winning. Should victory in the present always take precedence over trajectory across time?”

47. “When you dare aspire upward, you reveal the inadequacy of the present and the promise of the future. Then you disturb others, in the depths of their souls, where they understand that their cynicism and immobility are unjustifiable.”

48. “A naively formulated goal transmutes, with time, into the sinister form of life—lie.”

49. “We cannot navigate, without something to aim at, and while we are in this world, we must always navigate.”

50. “Strengthen the individual. Start with yourself. Take care of yourself. Define who you are. Refine your personality.”

51. “Compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not who someone else is today.”

52. “Perhaps you are overvaluing what you don’t have and undervaluing what you do.”

53. “We deserve some respect. You deserve some respect. You are important to other people, as much as to yourself. You have some vital role to play in the unfolding destiny of the world. You are, therefore, morally obliged to take care of yourself.”

54. “You should take care of, help and be good to yourself the same way you would take care of, help and be good to someone you loved and valued.”

55. “You need to place one foot in what you have mastered and understood, and the other in what you are currently exploring and mastering.”

56. “You carry character with you wherever you go, and it allows you to prevail against adversity.”

57. “Always place your becoming above your current being.”

58. “It is my firm belief that the best way to fix the world—a handyman’s dream, if ever there was one—is to fix yourself.”

59. “Stop saying those things that make you weak and ashamed. Say only those things that make you strong. Do only those things that you could speak of with honor.”

60. “We must each tell the truth, and repair what is in disrepair, and break down and recreate what is old and outdated. It is in this manner that we can and must reduce the suffering that poisons the world. It’s asking a lot. It’s asking for everything.”

61. “Sometimes, it seems the only people willing to give advice in a relativistic society are those with the least to offer.”

62. “In a crisis, the inevitable suffering that life entails can rapidly make a mockery of the idea that happiness is the proper pursuit of the individual.”

63. “Human female choosiness is also why we are very different from the common ancestor we shared with our chimpanzee , while the latter are very much the same.”

64. “If you yourself, if you say untrue things, if you act out a lie, you weaken your character.”

65. “You have to articulate your own principles, so that you can defend yourself against others’ taking inappropriate advantage of you, and so that you are secure and safe while you work and play.”

66. “You must keep the promises you make to yourself, and reward yourself, so that you can and motivate yourself.”

67. “You need to determine how to act toward yourself so that you are most likely to become and to stay a good person.”

68. “You must be cautious, because making your life better means adopting a lot of responsibility, and that takes more effort and care than living stupidly in pain and remaining arrogant, deceitful, and resentful.”

69. “It’s appropriate and praiseworthy to associate with people whose lives would be improved if they saw your life improve.”

70. “It is far better to render beings in your care competent than to protect them.”

71. “Our behavioral patterns are exceedingly complex, and psychology is a young science.”

72. “When life suddenly reveals itself as intense, gripping, and meaningful; when time passes and you’re so engrossed in what you’re doing you don’t notice—it is there and then that you are located precisely on the border between order and chaos.”

73. “When you decide to learn about your faults so that they can be rectified, you open a line of communication with the source of all revelatory thought. Maybe that’s the same thing as consulting your conscience. Maybe that’s the same thing, in some manner, as a discussion with God.”

74. “Say what you mean, so that you can find out what you mean. Act out what you say, so you can find out what happens. Then pay attention. Note your errors. Articulate them. Strive to correct them. That is how you discover the meaning of your life.”

75. “We are increasingly falling prey to the desperation of meaninglessness.”

76. “Beauty shames the ugly. Strength shames the weak. Death shames the living. And the ideal shames us all.”

77. “If you will not reveal yourself to others, you cannot reveal yourself to yourself. That does not only mean that you suppress who you are, although it also means that. It means that so much of what you could be will never be forced by necessity to come forward.”

78. “Alongside our wish to be free of rules, we all search for structure.”

79. “The soul of the individual eternally hungers for the heroism of genuine being, and that the willingness to take on that responsibility is identical to the decision to live a meaningful life.”

80. “To suffer terribly and to know yourself as the cause—that is Hell.”

81. “Sometimes, when people have a low opinion of their own worth—or, perhaps, when they refuse responsibility for their lives—they choose a new acquaintance, of precisely the type who proved troublesome in the past.”

82. “People create their worlds with the tools they have directly at hand. Faulty tools produce faulty results. Repeated use of the same faulty tools produces the same faulty results.”

83. “Those who fail to learn from the past doom themselves to repeat it. It’s partly fate. It’s partly inability. It’s partly an unwillingness to learn? Refusal to learn? Motivated refusal to learn?”

84. “You cannot be protected from the things that frighten you and you, but if you identify with the part of your being that is responsible for transformation, then you are always the equal, or more than the equal of the things that frighten you.”

85. “Anyone who was out to change the world by changing others was to be regarded with suspicion.”

86. “In order to be able to think, you have to risk being offensive.”

87. “You can’t long tolerate being swamped and overwhelmed beyond your capacity to cope while you are learning what you still need to know.”

88. “Chaos can be too much.”

89. “You don’t get to choose not to pay a price, you only get to choose which price you pay.”

90. “Nietzsche said that a man’s worth was determined by how much truth he could tolerate.”

91. “Rejection of the unknown is tantamount to identification with the devil.”

92. “This hell develops because creative exploration—impossible without humble acknowledgment of the unknown—constitutes the process that constructs and maintains the protective adaptive structure that gives life much of its acceptable meaning.”

93. “We require routine and tradition. That’s order. Order can become excessive, and that’s not good, but chaos can swamp us, so we drown—and that is also not good. We need to stay on the straight and narrow path.”

94. “The things that pose the greatest threats to your survival are the most real things.”

95. “Don’t ever underestimate the destructive power of sins of omission.”

96. “If a child has not been taught to behave properly by the age of four, it will forever be difficult for him or her to make friends.”

97. “Worthlessness is the default condition.”

98. “There is very little difference between the capacity for mayhem and destruction, integrity, and strength of character. This is one of the most difficult lessons of life.”

99. “If you remember that something bad happened, and you can figure out why, then you can try to avoid that bad thing happening again. That’s the purpose of memory. It’s not to remember the past. It’s to stop the same damn thing from happening over and over.”

100. “Depressed people, for example, can start feeling useless and burdensome, as well as grief-stricken and pained.”

101. “Consult your resentment. It’s a revelatory emotion, for all its pathology. It’s part of an evil triad—arrogance, deceit, and resentment.”

102. “Tyranny feeds on lies.”

103. “When should you push back against oppression, despite the danger? When you start nursing secret fantasies of revenge; when your life is being poisoned and your imagination fills with the wish to devour and destroy.”

104. “There’s some real utility in gratitude. It’s also good protection against the dangers of victimhood and resentment.”

105. “It is necessary to be strong in the face of death, because death is intrinsic to life.”

106. “Confront the chaos of being. Take aim against a sea of troubles. Specify your destination, and chart your course. Admit to what you want. Tell those around you who you are. Narrow and gaze attentively, and move forward, forthrightly. Be precise in your speech.”

107. “One of the problems with being relatively wealthy if you are a parent is that you cannot provide your children with necessity.”

108. “We require rules, standards, values— alone and together. We’re pack animals, beasts of burden. We must bear a load, to justify our miserable existence.”

109. “When the aristocracy catches a cold, as it is said, the working class dies of pneumonia.”

110. “If someone is badly hurt at some point in life—traumatized—the dominance counter can transform in a manner that makes additional hurt more rather than less likely.”

111. “There are so many ways that things can fall apart or fail to work altogether, and it is always wounded people who are holding it together.”

112. “The fundamental moral question is not how to shelter children completely from misadventure and failure so they never experience any fear or pain, but how to maximize their learning so that useful knowledge may be gained with minimal cost.”

113. “It isn’t precisely that people will fight for what they believe. They will fight, instead, to maintain the match between what they believe, what they expect, and what they desire.”

114. “Life without law remains chaotic, effectively intolerable. Life that is pure law becomes sterile, equally unbearable. The domination of chaos or sterility equally breeds murderous resentment and hatred.”

115. “Even if it were possible to permanently banish everything threatening—everything dangerous and therefore, everything challenging and interesting—that would mean only that another danger would emerge—that of permanent human infantilism and absolute uselessness.”

116. “Maybe God thought His new creation would be able to handle the serpent, and considered its presence the lesser of two evils.”

117. “Much of happiness is hope, no matter how deep the underworld in which that hope was conceived.”

118. “Relativism’s closest approximation to virtue is tolerance.”

119. “Maybe your misery is the weapon you brandish in your hatred for those who rose upward while you waited and sank. Maybe your misery is your attempt to prove the world’s injustice, instead of the evidence of your own sin, your missing of the mark, your conscious refusal to strive and live.”

120. “Ideologies are substitutes for true knowledge and ideologues are always dangerous when they come to power, because a simple-minded I-know-it-all approach is no match for the complexity of existence.”

121. “Every person is deeply flawed. Everyone falls short of the glory of God.”

122. “In the West, we have been withdrawing from our tradition, religion, and even nation-centred cultures, partly to decrease the danger of group conflict.”

123. “If you have a comprehensive explanation for everything, then it decreases uncertainty and anxiety and reduces your cognitive load. And if you can use that simplifying algorithm to put yourself on the side of moral virtue, then you’re constantly a with a minimum of effort.”

124. “If you are not willing to be a fool, you can’t become a master.”

125. “Order is not enough. You can’t just be stable, and secure, and unchanging, because there are still vital and important new things to be learned.”

126. “So, listen, to yourself and to those with whom you are speaking. Your wisdom then consists not of the knowledge you already have, but the continual search for knowledge, which is the highest form of wisdom.”

127. “Every bit of learning is a little death. Every bit of new information challenges a previous conception, forcing it to dissolve into chaos before it can be reborn as something better. Sometimes such deaths virtually destroy us.”

128. “There are some games you don’t get to play unless you are all in.”

129. “People organize their brains with conversation. If they don’t have anyone to tell their story to, they lose their minds. Like hoarders, they cannot unclutter themselves.”

130. “If your life is not what it could be, try telling the truth. If you cling desperately to an ideology, or wallow in nihilism, try telling the truth. If you feel weak and , and desperate, and confused, try telling the truth. In paradise, everyone speaks the truth. That is what makes it paradise. Tell the truth. Or, at least, don’t lie.”

131. “Don’t use language instrumentally.”

132. “You are by no means only what you already know. You are also all that which you could know, if you only would.”

133. “Women’s proclivity to say no, more than any other force, has shaped our evolution into the creative, industrious, upright, large-brained creatures that we are.”

134. “There are many systems of interaction between the brain, body and social world that can get caught in positive feedback loops.”

135. “You should not overlook the guidelines of your culture. Life is short, and you don’t have time to figure everything out on your own. The wisdom of the past was hard-earned, and your dead ancestors may have something useful to tell you.”

136. “The scope of our behavioral wisdom exceeds the breadth of our explicit interpretation. We act, even instruct, and yet do not understand. How can we do what we cannot explain?”

137. “It is better, proverbially, to rule your own spirit than to rule a city.”

138. “Bad laws drive out respect for good laws.”

139. “You are, on the one hand, the most complex thing in the entire universe, and on the other, someone who can’t even set the clock on your microwave. Don’t overestimate your self-knowledge.”

140. “Truth is the ultimate, inexhaustible natural resource. It’s the light in the darkness.”

141. “Cultivating judgment about the difference between virtue and vice is the beginning of wisdom—something that can never be out of date.”

142. “What can be truly loved about a person is inseparable from their limitations.”

143. “It’s easier to put off until tomorrow what needs to be done today, and drown the upcoming months and years in today’s cheap pleasures.”

144. “Perhaps happiness is always to be found in the journey uphill, and not in the fleeting sense of satisfaction awaiting at the next peak.”

145. “Once you become consciously aware that you, yourself, are vulnerable, you understand the nature of human vulnerability in general.”

146. “Something we cannot see protects us from something we do not understand. The thing we cannot see is culture—in its intrapsychic or internal manifestation. The thing we do not understand is the chaos that gave rise to culture.”

147. “If the structure of culture is disrupted, unwittingly, chaos returns. We will do anything—anything—to defend ourselves against that return.”

148. “It is not virtuous to be victimized by a bully, even if that bully is oneself.”

149. “Experience is the best teacher, and the worst experiences teach the best lessons.”

150. “Our society faces the increasing call to deconstruct its stabilizing traditions to include smaller and smaller numbers of people who do not or will not fit into the categories upon which even our perceptions are based.”

151. “Kindness is the excuse that social use when they want to exercise control over what other people think and say.”

152. “Each person’s private trouble cannot be solved by a social revolution, because revolutions are destabilizing and dangerous.”

153. “Life is indistinguishable from effortful maintenance.”

154. “All people serve their ambition. In that matter, there are no atheists. There are only people who know, and don’t know, what God they serve.”

155. “Treat yourself like you would someone you’re responsible for helping.”

156. “The fact that power plays a role in human motivation does not mean that it plays the only role, or even the primary role. Beware of single cause interpretations, and beware the people who purvey them.”

157. “You’re not perfect just the way you are. You could be better!”

158. “It might even be time to sacrifice what you love best, so that you can become who you might become, instead of staying who you are.”

159. “Devout adherence to the dictates of interest—assuming a suitably disciplined character—therefore ensures stabilisation and renewal of personality and world.”

160. “Interest is a spirit beckoning from the unknown—a spirit calling from outside the walls of society.”

161. “Pursuit of individual interest means hearkening to this spirit’s call—means journeying outside the protective walls of childhood dependence and adolescent group identification; means also returning to and rejuvenation of society.”

162. “Territory matters, and there is little difference between territorial rights and social status. It is often a matter of life and death.”

163. “We have learned to live together and organize our complex societies slowly and incrementally, over vast stretches of time, and we do not understand with sufficient exactitude why what we are doing works.”

164. “We may not exactly be God, but we’re not exactly nothing, either.”

165. “The only time ‘no’ ever means ‘no’ in the absence of violence is when it is uttered by one civilized person to another.”

166. “Loyalty must be negotiated fairly and honestly.”

167. “Friendship is a reciprocal arrangement.”

168. “Altering our ways of social being carelessly in the name of some ideological shibboleth is likely to produce far more trouble than good, given the suffering that even small revolutions generally produce.”

169. “Be good company when something fun is happening, so that you’re invited for the fun.”

170. “Most men do not meet female human standards.”

171. “Standards of better or worse are not illusory or unnecessary. If you hadn’t decided that what you are doing right now was better than the alternatives, you wouldn’t be doing it.”

172. “You would neither betray a friend, nor deal falsely and deceitfully in business, politics or love. However, your current knowledge has neither made you perfect nor kept you safe. So, it is insufficient, by definition—radically, fatally insufficient.”

173. “The meaning of life without positive value is not simply neutral.”

174. “Realization is dawning. Instead of playing the tyrant, therefore, you are paying attention. You are telling the truth, instead of manipulating the world.”

175. “Attend to the day, but aim at the highest good.”

176. “True thinking is rare—just like true listening.”

177. “Thinking is listening to yourself. It’s difficult. To think, you have to be at least two people at the same time. Then you have to let those people disagree. Thinking is an internal dialogue between two or more different views of the world.”

178. “We outsource the problem of sanity. People remain mentally healthy not merely because of the integrity of their own minds, but because they are constantly being reminded how to think, act, and speak by those around them.”

179. “Assume that the person you are listening to might know something you don’t.”

180. “Cooperation is for safety, security, and companionship. Competition is for personal growth and status.”


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