Selected Quotes about Mankind, Man

Mark how fleeting and paltry is the estate of man--yesterday in embryo, tomorrow a mummy or ashes. So for the hairsbreadth of time assigned to thee, live rationally, and part with life cheerfully, as drops the ripe olive, extolling the season that bore it and the tree that matured it. -- Marcus Aurelius

Mankind is divisible into two great classes: hosts and guests. -- Max Beerbohm

... a total being who can do many different things - think, fight, remember, love, anticipate, copulate, sing, laugh, imagine. All the activities can be used for good ends, all can be abused and turned to evil ends. -- Robert McAfee Brown

There is a loftier ambition than merely to stand high in the world. It is to stoop down and lift mankind a little higher. -- Henry Van Dyke

We have found a strange footprint on the shores of the unknown. We have devised profound theories, one after another, to account for its origins. At last, we have succeeded in reconstructing the creature that made the footprint. And lo! It is our own. -- Sir Arthur Eddington

Man is his own star; and the soul that can Render an honest and a perfect man Commands all light, all influence, all fate. Nothing to him falls early, or too late. Our acts our angels are, or good or ill, Our fatal shadows that walk by us still. -- John Fletcher

I have found little that is "good" about human beings on the whole. In my experience most of them are trash, no matter whether they publicly subscribe to this or that ethical doctrine or to none at all. That is something that you cannot say aloud, or perhaps even think. -- Sigmund Freud

Man: The most complex of beings, and thus the most dependent of beings. On all that made you up, you depend. -- André Gide

We tolerate shapes in human beings that would horrify us if we saw them in a horse. -- W. R. [William Ralph] Inge

The proof that man is the noblest of all creatures is that no other creature has ever denied it. -- G. C. (Georg Christoph) Lichtenberg

“Every man bears the whole stamp of the human condition.” -- Michel de Montaigne

Man is both strong and weak, both free and bound, both blind and far-seeing. He stands at the juncture of nature and spirit; and is involved in both freedom and necessity. -- Reinhold Niebuhr

In the arts of life man invents nothing; but in the arts of death he outdoes Nature herself, and produces by chemistry and machinery all the slaughter of plague, pestilence, and famine. -- George Bernard Shaw

Man, unlike any other thing organic or inorganic in the universe, grows beyond his work, walks up the stairs of his concepts, emerges ahead of his accomplishments. -- John Steinbeck

The fact that man knows right from wrong proves his intellectual superiority to other creatures; but the fact that he can do wrong proves his moral inferiority to any creature that cannot. -- Mark Twain

Man is a rational animal who always loses his temper when called upon to act in accordance with the dictates of reason. -- Orson Welles

Man is not an end but a beginning. We are at the beginning of the second week. We are children of the eighth day. -- Thornton Wilder

We are in the black theater of nonexistence. In an eye blink the curtain is up, the stage ablaze, for the vast drama of ourselves. -- Herman Wouk

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Quotatio Topics Index

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