Quotes R

race rationalism rationality reading reality rebellion reconstruction recycling redemption rednecks Reformation regeneration regret relativity religion remedies remembrance repartee repentance repetition resentment resolutions respect respectability responsibility resurrection retirement return of Christ revelation revenge revival rights risk Rome Rousseau rulers rules


REDSKIN, n. A North American Indian, whose skin is not red -- at least not on the outside.
Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914), "The Devil's Dictionary", 1911

The modern definition of "racist" is "someone who is winning an argument with a liberal.-- Peter Brimelow National Review (2/1/93)

At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace the savage races throughout the world.- Charles Darwin, The Descent of Man, 2nd edition, New York, A L. Burt Co., 1874, p. 178

Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred. The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny, and that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. -- Martin Luther King, Jr., "I Have A Dream" speech, 1963

It is noteworthy that the process of human development steadily proceeds with those groups whose historic characteristic is not isolation but the commingling of blood. On the whole the Mongolian race has held itself apart, and in its isolation has bestowed no benefits upon our race at large. Behind the Himalayas a similar life secluded itself, and hence failed to impart any permanent impulse to the outside world. Even in Europe we find that with the Scandinavians and Slavs there was hardly any intermingling of blood, and, consequently having failed to develop a richer type, they have taken little part in the general development of human life.- Abraham Kuyper, Lectures on Calvinism p.22

Affirmative action is the attempt to deal with malignant racism by instituting benign racism. -- Elliott Larson

In a speech at the University of Florida, Dick Gregory said that he really enjoyed the Martin Luther King Jr stamp, just thinking about all those white bigots licking the backside of a black man. -- Frank Lynch

The issue of race could benefit from a period of benign neglect. -- Daniel P Moynihan

It could never be a correct justification that, because the whites oppressed us yesterday when they had power, that the blacks must oppress them today because they have power.--Robert Mugabe, 17 April 1980

We are all decendents of Adam, and we are all products of racial miscegenation. -- Lester Bowles Pearson 14th Canadian PM (1963-68) (Nobel 1957)

Today, racism is regarded as a crime if practiced by a majority -- but as an inalienable right if practiced by a minority. The notion that one's culture is superior to all others solely because it represents the traditions of one's ancestors, is regarded as chauvinism if claimed by a majority -- but as 'ethnic' pride if claimed by a minority. Resistance to change and progress is regarded as reactionary if demonstrated by a majority -- but retrogression to a Balkan village, to an Indian teepee or to the jungle is hailed if demonstrated by a minority. -- Ayn Rand, The Age of Envy

My first American ancestor, gentlemen, was an Indian--an early Indian. Your ancestors skinned him alive, and I am an orphan. All those Salem witches were ancestors of mine. Your people made it tropical for them... The first slave brought into New England out of Africa was an ancestor of mine -- for I am a mixed breed, an infinitely shaded and exquisite Mongrel. Mark Twain, speech, Plymouth Rock and the Pilgrims (1887)

Be nice to whites, they need you to rediscover their humanity.Desmond Tutu (1931-____)In NY "Times," 19 Oct 1984

In the long run, there is not much discrimination against superior talent. It constrains men to recognize it.- Carter G. Woodson (1875-1950) "Negro Makers of HIstory," 1928.


God give me divine grace to stem the awful advance of saucy rationalism. Lord Shaftesbury, quoted by Barbara Tuchman, Bible and Sword.


Anderson's Law: I have yet to see any problem, however complicated, which, when you looked at it in the right way, did not become still more complicated.

Man thinks, God laughs - Jewish proverb

Reason itself is fallible, and this fallibility must find a place in our logic. Nicola Abbagnano (1900 &endash; 1990)

Beware of a strong head and a cold heart.- Paul Bayne

Logic and truth ... have very little to do with each other. Logic is concerned merely with the fidelity and accuracy with which a certain process is performed, a process which can be performed with any materials, with any assumption. You can be as logical about griffins and basilisks as about sheep and pigs ... Logic, then, is not necessarily an instrument for finding out truth; on the contrary, truth is a necessary instrument for using logic--for using it, that is, for the discovery of further truth ... Briefly, you can only find truth with logic if you have already found truth without it.-- G.K. Chesterton, The Man Who was Orthodox (1963)

Poor human reason, when it trusts in itself, substitutes the strangest absurdities for the highest divine concepts. John Chrysostom

Oh, tell me, who first declared, who first proclaimed that man only does nasty things because he does not know his own real interests; and that if he were enlightened, if his eyes were opened to his real normal interests, man would at once cease to do nasty things, would at once become good and noble because, being enlightened and understanding his real advantage, he would see his own advantage in the good and nothing else… . Oh, the babe! Oh, the pure, innocent child! &emdash;Fyodor Dostoyevsky, _Notes from the Underground _

Man is a rational animal. He can think up a reason for anything he wants to believe.-- Anatole France

Fragile as reason is and limited as law is as the institutionalized medium of reason, that's all we have standing between us and the tyranny of mere will and the cruelty of unbridled, undisciplined feeling. Felix Frankfurter

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

Men are apt to mistake the strength of their feeling for the strength of their argument. The heated mind resents the chill touch and relentless scrutiny of logic. - William Ewart Gladstone, 1809 - 1898

Man is a reasoning rather than a reasonable animal. Alexander Hamilton (1757-1804)

Reason, thou vain impertinence,
Deluding hypocrite, begone!
And go and plague your men of sense,
But let my love and me alone.

At best thou'rt but a glimmering light,
Which serves not to direct our way;
But, like the moon, confounds our sight,
And only shows it is not day.
-"Reason" (from Miscellaneous Poems and Translations by Oxford Hands,printed 1685)

Any person seasoned with a just sense of the imperfections of natural reason, will fly to revealed truth with the greatest avidity.
David Hume (1711-1776) "Dialogs Concerning Natural Religion," 1779.

Bertie in particular sustained simultaneously a pair of opinions ludicrously incompatible. He held that in fact human affairs were carried on after a most irrational fashion, but that the remedy was quite simple and easy, since all we had to do was to carry them on rationally. &emdash;John Maynard Keynes, on Bertrand Russell

Reason is a faculty far larger than mere objective force. When either the political or the scientific discourse announces itself as the voice of reason, it is playing God, and should be spanked and stood in the corner. --Ursula K. Le Guin, 1986

When you are arguing against Him you are arguing against the very power that makes you able to argue at all. ~C.S.Lewis, Mere Christianity.

It is only when you are asked to believe in Reason coming from non-reason that you must cry Halt. Human minds. They do not come from nowhere. ~ C.S. Lewis 1898-1963 , Miracles (1947)

Dr. Henning asked: "Is reason to hold no authority at all with Christians, since it is to be set aside in matters of faith?" The Doctor replied: Before faith and the knowledge of God, reason is mere darkness; but in the hands of those who believe,'tis an excellent instrument. All facilities and gifts are pernicious, exercised by the impious; but most salutary when possessed by godly persons." Martin Luther (1483-1546), Table Talk, LXXVI. [1569]

Reason is the greatest enemy that faith has; it never comes to the aid of spiritual things, but--more frequently than not--struggles against the divine Word, treating with contempt all that emanates from God. Martin Luther (1483-1546), Table Talk [1569]

People's behavior makes sense if you think about it in terms of their goals, needs, and motives. Thomas Mann

I have often thought of Mr Paul Bayne, his fairwell words to Dr Ames when going to Holland; Mr Bayne perceiving him to be a man of extra-ordinary parts, 'Beware (said he) of a strong head and a cold heart.' COTTON MATHER

The brightest flashes in the world of thought are incomplete until they have been proven to have their counterparts in the world of fact. Benjamin E. Mays (1895-1984)

Monotheism, someone has said, offers two simple axioms: 1) There is a God. 2) It's not you. Knowing that we are fallible humans underlies the humility and openness that inspires science, and democracy. As Madeline L'Engle noted, "The naked intellect is an extraordinarily inaccurate instrument." -- David G. Myers

A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right...Time makes more converts than reason.
Tom Paine, Common Sense

The supreme function of reason is to show man that some things are beyond reason.-- Blaise Pascal

Every logical position will eventually lead you into trouble, and heresy, and chaos. Every logical position is consistent, but it is logic which is in the human mind, not God's logic. The human mind is finite and cannot grasp eternity, and therefore the finite mind sees the infinite as not graspable coherently. If we could grasp it all coherently, without contradiction, we would be God. The person who insists on being logical to the end winds up in a mess. I am not saying that we should not be rational. I am not anti-intellectual. I am saying that the intellect by itself is helpless to arrive at total truth. ... Kenneth L. Pike (1912-2001), Stir, Change, Create

Most people would sooner die than think; in fact, they do so. -- Bertrand Russell

It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into.--Swift

Reason is a very light rider, and easily shook off.-- Swift

One can never do without straightforward common sense in matters great as well as small. -- Margaret Thatcher, The Path to Power, Harper Collins,1995, p31

Would reason ever have proved to me that I must love my neigbour instead of strangling him? I was told that in my childhood and I believed it gladly, for they told me what was already in my soul. But who discovered it? Not reason. Reason discovered the struggle for existence, and the law demanding that I should strangle all who hinder the satisfaction of my desires. That is the deduction of reason. But loving one's neighbour reason could never discover, because it's unreasonable.-- Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

It is not because God is irrational that we cannot comprehend him; it is because God is rational, and in the nature of the case, ultimately rational. C Van Til

Passion and prejudice govern the world; only under the name of reason.--John Wesley, Letter to Joseph Benson, October 5, 1770

Two and two continue to make four, in spite of the whine of the amateur for three, or the cry of the critic for five &endash; James Whistler



You may have tangible wealth untold,
Caskets of jewels and coffers of gold.
Richer than I you can never be,
I had a Mother who read to me.
"The Reading Mother" by Strickland Gillilan


Reality is what refuses to go away when I stop believing in it. P. K. Dick

Humankind cannot bear very much reality. T S Elliott

The masses think that is is easy to flee from reality, when it is the most difficult thing in the world.--Ortega y Gasset

Either you deal with what is the reality, or you can be sure that the reality is going to deal with you. Alex Haley (1921-1992)

I believe in looking reality straight in the eye and denying it.   -  Garrison Keillor

For the wise men of old, the cardinal problem of human life was how to conform the soul to objective reality, and the solution was wisdom, self-discipline and virtue. For the modern mind, the cardinal problem is how to subdue reality to the wishes of man, and the solution is a technique. C. S. LEWIS, The Abolition of Man

Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.
Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
Dust though art, to dust returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.
Longfellow, ' A Psalm of Life'

For the great majority of mankind are satisfied with appearance, as though they were realities and are often more influenced by the things that seem than by those that are.-- Niccolo Machiavelli

Reality is something you rise above. Liza Minnelli (1946-____)

We live in a fantasy world, a world of illusion. The great task in life is to find reality.
Iris Murdoch (1919-____) In "The Times," 15 Apr 1983.

Reality is the leading cause of stress amongst those in touch with it Jane Wagner

For the wise men of old, the cardinal problem of human life was how to conform the soul to objective reality, and the solution was wisdom, self-discipline and virtue. For the modern mind, the cardinal problem is how to subdue reality to the wishes of man, and the solution is a technique. C. S. LEWIS, The Abolition of Man

It's not denial. I'm just very selective about what I accept as reality. -- Bill Watterson, "Calvin and Hobbes"


Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God.
John Bradshaw (1602-59), English lawyer, regicide. Inscription at Bradshaw's final burial place near Martha Bay. See Henry S. Randall "Life of Thomas Jefferson" (1865) vol. 3, appendix 4, p.585. He presided at the trial of Charles I. Buried in Westminster abbey, his body was exhumed at the Restoration and hanged in public, like that of Cromwell.

However these deeds of men are judged in themselves, still the Lord accomplished his work through them alike when he broke the bloody scepters of arrogant kings and when he overturned intolerable governments. Let the princes hear and be afraid. But we must, in the meantime, be very careful not to despise or violate that authority of magistrates, full of venerable majesty, which God has established by the weightiest decrees, even though it may reside with the most unworthy men, who defile it as much as they can with their own wickedness. For, if the correction of unbridled despotism is the Lord's to avenge, let us not at once think that it is entrusted to us, to whom no command has been given except to obey and suffer.
John Calvin, The Institutes of the Christian Religion [1559]

He that has once concluded it lawful to resist power, when it wants merit, will soon find a want of merit, to justify his resistance to power.
Samuel Johnson, Sermon 23


1) Christ, not man, is king.
2) The beginning of all Biblical government is self-government.
3) Other covenant institutions (church, family, etc.) do not derive their power from the state, but from God.
4) We must obey God rather than men. (Acts 5:29)
5) Natural man and societies have a proclivity to slavery and tyranny. (Depravity)
6) The role of the state is to execute justice.
7) Biblical law is the guiding principle of all rightly instituted political systems.
8) God raises up and sets down kings.
9) God reckons his accounts (Deut. 28).
10) There is a time to fight (and a time to die) to defend God's truth and to protect your family and neighbour.

The Christian Reconstructionists have linked the hope for "Christian nations" with (what I call) "idealistic post-millennialism," in which they expect "the nations to be converted, [where] people will WANT to live Godly lives, will VOLUNTARILY institute theocracy (Christian republics) in their nations, and will unify their churches freely and cordially. This is a triumphalism of a sort, but a triumph gained by converting the heart, not by imposing the will"
James Jordan, personal letter to E.A.P., June 25, 1981

One desire has been the ruling passion of my life.One high motive has acted like a spur upon my mindand soul. And sooner than that I should seek escape from the sacred necessity that is laid upon me, let the breath of life fail me. It is this: That in spite of all worldly opposition, God's holy ordinances shall be established again in the home, in the school and in the State for the good of the people; to carve as it were into the conscience of the nation the ordinances of the Lord, to which Bible and Creation bear witness, until the nation pays homage again to God. Abraham Kuyper, 1897.

Now as Christians we believe that the basic starting point is the regeneration of man. Then man takes and applies that faith. For Christians the basic government is the self-government of the Christian man. Then the basic governmental unit is the family. This means that every father and mother will be more important in the sight of God than heads of state, because He controls children, property and the future. Then the third is the church as the government, fourth the school as a government, fifth your job governs you, then sixth society governs you with its ideas, beliefs and standards, and seventh, one among many forms of government, is the civil government.
Today, we are implicitly totalitarian. We speak of the state as the government. That's totalitarian. So we have to rid ourselves of such things. The Christian theonomic society will only come about as each man governs himself under God and governs his particular sphere. And only so will we take back government from the state and put it in the hands of Christians.- RJ Rushdoony , God's Law and Society.


Recycling Tips - Old telephone books make great address books.
Just cross out the names of people you don't know


Redemption. It is also because the people of God were in Christ when He gave His life a ransom and redeemed them by His blood that salvation has been secured for them; they are represented as united to Christ in His death, resurrection, and exaltation to heaven (Rom. 6:2-11; Eph.2:4-6; Col. 3:3, 4). . . . Hence we may never think of the work of redemption wrought once for all by Christ apart from the union with His people which was effected in the election of the Father before the foundation of the world.John Murray (Redemption Accomplished and Applied


The term used to describe them (Ulster Scots) was rednecks, a Scots border term meaning Presbyterians. - Arther Herman, How the Sots Invented the Modern World, 2001

As a symbol of their covenant with God and each other, the Scottish Covenanters began wearing a red collar around their neck. Noting the symbolism, the English began to derisively refer to these religious dissenters as "Rednecks." Thus, the origin of the term was born in Christian reformation and resistance to religious and political coercion. Due to their religious and political oppression, and eventual defeat, many of Scotland's Covenanters fled their homeland and came to settle the American South. So it is that the South became the historic home for the Scottish "Rednecks," who sought to live according to the true teachings of the Bible. In Praise Of"Redneckism" By Wayne Carlson - 02.19.02 http://www.sierratimes.com/02/02/19/carlson.htm


sola fide * sola gratia * sola Scriptura * soli Deo gloria

Semper Reformanda et Reformans

It is the reformed attitude, rather than the reforming one, that I think has caused more damage to the Church than most things in current days.  In possessing the keys to the kingdom, we are in danger of hitting other pilgrims on their journey to the celestial city with those keys, instead of trying to unlock more truth together.- Trevor Allin

Reforms come from the bottom. No man with four aces requests a new deal. Frank Baer

Luther's rejection of Papal authority was not due to any difficulty he may have experienced in reconciling the claims made for the Petrine office with the character of the men who occupied the Papal throne in his time, nor to any confusion caused by the Conciliar Movement. His objections went much deeper and sprang, not from the concrete existential situation of his time, but from his theological principles. Luther saw quite early that his theory of justification by faith alone implied a denial of any divinely appointed hierarchy in the Church. Already in 1518 he had accepted the Hussite doctrine that the True Church, the Church of the promises and the Mystical Body of Christ is invisible. Luther's saving faith is the response of the individual soul to the Word of God revealed in Scripture; in his theology there is no place for any created activity to mediate to men God's saving action nor for any active sharing by men in the dispensation of grace or divine truth. ... George H. Duggan

Reformation ends not in contemplation, but in action. George Gillespie to the House of Commons, March 27 1644.

To reform a man, you must begin with his grandmother. Victor Hugo

Let men say what they will, or pick holes where they may, they will never succeed in disproving these facts. To the Reformation, Englishmen owe an English Bible, and liberty for every man to read it. To the Reformation, they owe the knowledge of the way of peace with God, and of the right of every sinner to go straight to Christ by faith, without bishop, priest, or minister standing in his way. To the Reformation, they owe a Scriptural standard of morality and holiness such as our ancestors never dreamed of. For ever let us be thankful for these inestimable mercies.-- J. C. Ryle (1816-1900), Five English Reformers

For (Martin) Luther, the sola of "Sola Scriptura" was inseparably related to the Scriptures' unique inerrancy. It was because popes could and did err and because councils could and did err that Luther came to realize the supremacy of Scripture. Luther did not despise church authority, nor did he repudiate church councils as having no value. His praise of the Council of Nicaea is noteworthy. Luther and the Reformers did not mean by "Sola Scriptura" that the Bible is the only authority in the church; rather, they meant that the Bible is the only infallible authority in the church.... R. C. Sproul

I dream of a new reformation -- a reformation that is not simply a renewal of life but a new vision of life: a vision that yields new forms and structures in society and culture. As long as Christians restrict their Christianity to a religion, a faith that is compartmentalized and isolated from life, they can have revival but never, ever reformation. We need to hear and do the Word of God in all of our lives.- . R.C. Sproul


Christ never undertakes to heal any but he makes a certain cure, 'Those whom thou givest me I have kept, and none of them is lost' (John17:12). Other physicians can only cure them that are sick, but Christ cures them that are dead, 'And you hat he quickened who were dead in trespasses and sins' (Eph. 2:1).

. ...the first effect of the power of God in the heart in regeneration is to give the heart a Divine taste or sense; to cause it to have a relish of the loveliness and sweetness of the supreme excellency of the Divine nature. JONATHAN EDWARDS

Sheep and swine can both end up in the mire. Yet the essential difference in their two natures is quie visible from the reaction each has to its fallen condition. While sheep do stray and stumble into the mire,they quickly loathe the situation and struggle to get free. They may be dirty, but they desire to be clean. They may be stuck, but they bleat for their shepherd to come and save them out of the muck. But swine, in keeping with their nature, wallow in the muck, content to stay there all day. JOHN ENSOR

Christ it was who gave me hope, which is himself (and) revealed himself in me, and gave me his spirit and gave me his grace, which I found sufficient ... he it was that opened to me when I was shut up and had neither hope nor faith.
George Fox &emdash; The Journal of George Fox. Nickalls ed. I2 

Regeneration is a single act, complete in itself, and never repeated; conversion, as the beginning of holy living, is the commencement of a series, constant, endless and progressive.A. A. HODGE

When God works in us, the will, being changed and sweetly breathed upon by the Spirit of God, desire and acts, not from compulsion, but responsively.

I felt myself absolutely born again. The gates of Paradise had been flung open and I had entered. There and then the whole of Scripture took on another look to me. --Martin Luther (1483-1546)

It is not the tempest, nor the earthquake, nor the fire, but the still small voice of the Spirit that carries on the glorious work of saving souls.
Robert Murray McCheyne

Just as in the beginning "God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light' so, at the moment he appointed for our new birth, he said, "Let there be life' and there was life. J. A. MOTYER

We are helpless to cooperate in our regeneration as we are to co-operate in the work of Calvary. IAIN MURRAY

Regeneration. It is in Christ that the people of God are created anew. "We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works" (Eph. 2:10). . . . the beginning of salvation in actual possession should be in union with Christ because we have found already that it is in Christ that salvation had its origin in the eternal election of the Father and that it is in Christ salvation was once for all secured by Jesus' ransom blood. We could not think of such union with Christ as suspended when the people of God become the actual partakers of redemption--they are created anew in Christ. John Murray (Redemption Accomplished and Applied,

When God initiated the plan of redemption, He didn't set out to make fallen people better. His design was to make them new. - Donna Newt

Let them pretend what they please, the true reason why any despise the new birth is because they hate a new life. He that cannot endure to live to God will as little endure to hear of being born of God. JOHN OWEN

Infants do not induce, or cooperate in, their own procreation and birth; no more can those who are 'dead in trespapasses and sins' prompt the quickening operation of God's Spirit within them . J I Packer

It has pleased God that divine verities should not enter the heart through the understanding, but the understanding through the heart.... Blaise Pascal (1623-1662)

No one can truly say that Jesus is Lord, unless Thou take the veil away, and breathe the living word. Then only then, we feel our interest in His blood.
JOHN WESLEY, hymn, Spirit of Faith, Come Down.


Four things come not back: the spoken word, the spent arrow, the past, the neglected opportunity.... Omar Idn Al-Halif

The life of every man is a diary in which he means to write one story, and writes another; and his humbles hour is when he compares the volume as it is with what he vowed to make it. --Sir James Matthew Barrie (1860-1937) _The Little Minister_ [1891], Chapter 1

Don't fear failure so much that you refuse to try new things. The saddest summary of a life contains three descriptions: could have, might have, and should have. Louis E. Boone

Classic remorse, as all the moralists are agreed, is a most undesirable sentiment. If you have behaved badly, repent, make what amends you can and address yourself to the task of behaving better next time. On no account brood over your wrongdoing. ROLLING IN THE MUCK IS NOT THE BEST WAY OF GETTING CLEAN.- Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

I regret many follies which sprang from my obstinancy; but without that trait I would not have reached my goal. - Carl G.Jung

Has this world been so kind to you that you should leave with regret? There are better things ahead than any we leave behind. C.S. Lewis (1898-1963)

Regret is the cancer of an otherwise healthy life. Pitz, Shaun

The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone. Harriet Beecher Stowe

For of all the sad words of tongue or pen,
The saddest are these: "It might have been."
John Greenleaf Whittier (1807-1892) Maud Miller, stanza 53

No man is rich enough to buy back his past. Oscar Wilde


Relativity applies to physics, not ethics. Albert Einstein

How long is a minute depends on which side of the bathroom door you are on. (Albert Einstein)

....our times when it is unfashionable to be sure of anything, when anything is tolerated except intolerance and when any individual is infallible except the Pope. - Anne Widdicombe MP, The Path To Rome


Don't need a new religion, haven't used the old one up yet.

I am, therefore, of opinion that men ought, (after they have examined with unbiased judgments every system of religion, and chosen one system, on their own authority, for themselves,) to avow their opinions and defend them with boldness.-- John Adams Diary Mar. 7, 1756; 'Works' II, p8

Religion cannot pass away. The burning of a little straw may hide the stars of the sky, but the stars are there, and will reappear. --Carlyle

One sees a trend in our political and legal cultures toward treating religious beliefs as arbitrary and unimportant, a trend supported by a rhetoric that implies that there is something wrong with religious devotion. -- Stephen L. Carter, _The Culture of Disbelief_, 1993

...religion is the only firm foothold of all power; that cast loose or depraved, no government can be stable; for when was there ever obedience when religion did not teach it? - Charles I to Queen Henrietta Maria in Jemes Barbary, Puritan and Cavalier, p.174

It is rather ridiculous to ask a man just about to be boiled in a pot and eaten, at a purely religious feast, why he does not regard all religions as equally friendly and fraternal. G K Chesterton _The Everlasting Man_, 1925

Americans increasingly prefer to be described as "spiritual," rather than "religious." There is a telling difference here: the word "religion" comes from the Latin word religiari, for "binding," and that's the last thing we want our faith to do to us. - BreakPoint with Charles Colson Commentary #011109 - 11/09/2001

Men will wrangle for religion; write for it; fight for it; die for it; anything but live for it. --Caleb C. Colton

There is in me, as there is in men everwhere to-day, a hunger for a positive faith that will..."satisfy the soul of the saint without disgusting the intellect of the scholar". Though neither a saint nor a scholar, I have this hunger because I belong to this generation and this is the modern religious hunger. There is something in me that holds me fascinated at a street corner listening to a Salvation Army exhorter, despite my inner revolt against his inadequate conception of life and religion. --Glenn Frank, 1923

If men are so wicked with religion, what would they be without it?--Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)

[By the end of the '70s, many people] hungered for religion's sweets, but rejected religion's discipline; wanted its help in trouble, but not he strictures that might have kept them out of trouble; expected its ecstasy, but rejected its ethics; demanded salvation, but rejected the harsh, antique dichotomy of right and wrong. --David Frum, _How We Got Here: The 70s--The Decade That Brought You Modern Life, For Better or Worse_

Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is.- Mahatma Gandhi

Just in terms of allocation of time resources, religion is not very efficient. There's a lot more I could be doing on a Sunday morning. - William H. Gates III

This life is just a testing ground. It's not a popular view, I know. People will.say that I'm sort of a mindless robot who's using religion as a crutch to get through life. Well, I'm not a mindless robot, but I am using [religion] as a crutch to get through life. ~Mel Gibson

And then there was another question. I had met Christ, but what kind of a Christian had I become? Was I a Protestant, or a Catholic? I avoided that question like the plague. I just didn't know, and I didn't dare ask. Years later when we were living in Geneva, my son was born and I had to register his birth. As I filled in the forms I came to the question 'Protestant ou Catholic'?  I replied 'Chrétien' &endash; 'Christian'. 'But,' said the Registrar, 'that doesn't exist &endash; the computer won't accept it!' I went to my Pastor, who explained about Henry VIII and the birth of the Protestant movement. But I couldn't reconcile any of that with what I read in the Bible! After three days of arguing with the Registrar, the deadline approached and she gave in. 'Look, Monsieur Gidoomal, I've created a separate box here - it's marked "Chrétien" and we've even changed the computer programme!'- Ram Gidoomal     "Karma, Politics and the Holy Spirit" - A Review of the CPA's Future, Address to the Catholic Charismatic Renewal Group, Saturday June 19th 2004 Friends House, Euston

Every man, either to his terror or consolation, has some sense of religion. James Harrington (1611-1677)

Writing for a penny a word is ridiculous. If a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion. - Falsely attributed to L. Ronald Hubbard say his followers, however see http://dlindsay.best.vwh.net/scientology/start.a.religion.faq for other evidence.

The highest flights of charity, devotion, trust, patience, bravery to which the wings of human nature have spread themselves, have been flown for religious ideals. -William James

The very strength and facility of the pessimists' case at once poses us a problem. If the universe is so bad, or even half so bad, how on earth did human beings ever come to attribute it to the activity of a wise and good Creator? Men are fools, perhaps; but hardly so foolish as that. The direct inference from black to white, from evil flower to virtuous root, from senseless work to a workman infinitely wise, staggers belief. The spectacle of the universe as revealed by experience can never have been the ground of religion: it must have always been something in spite of which religion, acquired from a different source, was held.... C. S. Lewis (1898-1963), The Problem of Pain

There is no surer sign of decay in a country than to see the rites of religion held in contempt. Niccolo Machiavelli

As the observance of divine institutions is the cause of the greatness of republics, so the disregard of them produces their ruin; for where the fear of God is wanting, there the country will come to ruin, unless it be sustained the fear of the prince, which temporarily supply the want of religion.
Machiavelli, _Discourses_, 1519

Since I have known God in a saving manner, painting, poetry, and music have had charms unknown to me before. I have either received what I suppose is a taste for them, or religion has refined my mind, and made it susceptible of new impressions from the sublime and beautiful. O, how religion secures the heightened enjoyment of those pleasures which keep so many from God by their being a source of pride! -- Henry Martyn

Religion is the sign of the oppressed creature, the sentiment of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people. -- Karl Marx

We must respect the other fellow's religion, but only in the sense and to the extent that we respect his theory that his wife is beautiful and his children are smart. H. L. Mencken

To be political is to be religious, i.e. to acknowledge a god as the source of ultimate authority over the nation.The kingdom of God grows by means of the preaching of the gospel. Nonetheless, the object of this war is the conquest of 'nations', as Christ made clear in his Great Commission. Stephen Perks ,'Christianity As A Political Faith' 'Christianity & Society', April 2004

There is no religion without love, and people may talk as much as they like about their religion, but if it does not teach them to be good and kind to man and beast, it is all a sham.-- Anna Sewell (1820-1878): "Black Beauty," 1877.

Whenever a man talks loudly against religion,-always suspect that it is not his reason, but his passions which have got the better of his creed.--- Laurence Sterne, Tristram Shandy.

Religion holds the solution to all problems of human relationship, whether they are between parents and children or nation and nation. Sooner or later, man has always had to decide whether he worships his own power or the power of God. A. J. Toynbee


The remedy is worse than the disease. Francis Bacon. 1561-1626. Of Seditions.


In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The Larks, still bravely singing, fly,
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead. Scarce days ago
We lived , felt dawn, saw sunset glow
Loved, and were loved ,and now we lie

In Flanders fields.
Take up your quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw ,
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow in Flanders fields.
In Flanders Fields, Major John McCrae, May 1915, at Ypres

They shall grow not old as we that are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We shall remember them.
Laurence Binyon, For the Fallen, 1914.

If there is any substitute for love, it is memory. -Joseph Brodsky

There's a grief that can't be spoken
There's a pain goes on an on
Empty chairs at empty tables
Now my friends are dead and gone.
Here they talked of revolution
Here it was they lit the flame
Here they sang about 'tomorrow'
And tomorrow never came.
From the table in the corner
They could see a world reborn
And they rose with voices ringing
I can hear them now
The very words that they had sung
Became their last communion
On the lonely barricade at dawn!
Oh my friends, my friends, forgive me
That I live and you are gone.
There's a grief that can't be spoken
There's a pain goes on and on.
Phantom faces at the window
Phantom shadows on the floor
Empty chairs at empty tables
Where my friends will meet no more.
Oh my friends, my friends, don't ask me
What your sacrifice was for
Empty chairs at empty tables
Where my friends will sing no more.
Marius, a character in _Les Mise/'rables_, a musical by Alain Boubilm and Claude-Michel Scho/:nberg, 1980 "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables" English lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer Based on the 1862 novel by Victor Hugo


Silence is the unbearable repartee. Gilbert Keith Chesterton

Judge Willis tried to think of a decisive retort. At last it arrived.'Mr. Smith, have you ever heard of a saying by Bacon--the great Bacon--that youth and discretion are ill-wedded companions?'
'Yes, I have,' came the instant repartee. 'And have you ever heard of a saying of Bacon--the great Bacon--that a much-talking judge is like an ill-tuned cymbal?'
'You are extremely offensive, young man,' exclaimed the judge.
'As a matter of fact,' said Smith, 'we both are; but I amtrying to be, and you can't help it.'
Such a dialogue would be held brilliant in a carefully-written play, but that these successvie rejoinders, each more smashing than the former, should have leapt into being upon the spur of the moment is astounding. ...-- Winston Churchill, 'F. E. First Earl of Birkenhead', in _Great Contemporaries_, 1937

On another occasion, in the crowing period of his life, he was addressing a meeting in his old constituency. He said at one point: 'And now I shall tell you exactly what the Government has done for all of you.'
'Nothing!' shouted a woman in the gallery.
'My dear lady', said Lord Birkenhead, 'the light in this hall is so dim as to prevent a clear sight of your undoubted charms, so that I am unable to say with certainty whether you are a virgin, a widow, or a matron, but in any case I will guarantee to prove that you are wrong. If you are a virgin flapper, we have given you the vote; if you are a wife, we have increased employment and reduced the cost of living; if you are a widow, we have given you a pension--and if you are none of these, but are foolish enough to be a tea drinker, we have reduced the tax on sugar.-- Winston Churchill, 'F. E. First Earl of Birkenhead', in_Great Contemporaries_, 1937

To a woman heckler shouting "I wouldn't vote for you if you were the Archangel Gabriel" .....
If I were the Archangel Gabriel, madam, I'm afraid you would not be in my constituency.
Sir Robert Gordon Menzies , at Williamstown ,Victoria

William Howard Taft (1857 &endash; 1930):I have been talking for a quarter of an hour, but there is so much noise that I can hardly hear myself talk."
Crowd member: "That's all right, you're not missing anything.";

Wilde once appeared onstage after one of his plays to accept a standing ovation. During the applause, however, someone in the audience threw a rotten cabbage on stage. The witty playwright simply leaned over, picked up the cabbage, and replied: "Thank you, my dear fellow. Every time I smell it, I shall be reminded of you."

Voter: "I'd sooner vote for the devil."
John Wilkes (1725 &endash; 1797): "And if your friend is not standing?"


If you're headed in the wrong direction, God allows U-turns

Semper peccator, semper penitens

To my eternal shame, I even got my wife and daughter to back me up with witness statements supporting my lie. But then my opponents ambushed me in the middle of the trial with clear documentary evidence that I had told a lie on oath. My credibility as a witness was shattered. I had to withdraw from the libel case. And within 24 hours my whole life was shattered too. The former Cabinet Minister had impaled himself on his own sword of truth, with explosive and apocalyptic consequences. Some people have expressed surprise that I am still in one piece after being so torn to shreds in the onslaught of media vilification and castigation I received at the height of my dramas. A great deal of the criticism of me was vitriolic; some of it was vicious; and I deserved most of it. When these thunderbolts were raining in on me from all directions, I turned to my Christian faith,imperfect though it was, and began to ponder more deeply than ever before on the great themes in the gospels of love, penitence, redemption and resurrection. Although I am sceptical of fox-hole conversion, nevertheless the time when I was at the nadir of my misfortunes was the time when I turned more humbly and penitently than ever towards Our Lord Jesus Christ. Jonathan Aitken in The Tablet. 12 June 1999

Then Isaiah heard the wonderful words: 'This has touched your lips. Your guilt is taken away and your sin is atoned for.' And the Scripture goes on: 'Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying: Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? And I said: Here am I! Send me.' Note the total unconditionality of that response, 'Send me'. It does not mean, 'Send me, I was going that way anyhow', or 'Send me, I was planning to do that', or 'Send me, I rather like the sound of that idea'. It may mean something much more disagreeable. In my case it means, 'Send me to prison'.-- Jonathan Aitken in The Tablet. 12 June 1999

There is one case of death-bed repentance recorded, that of the penitent thief, that none should despair; and only one, that none should presume. --Augustine (354-430)

I have often loved darkness,
observed lying vanities,
forsaken thy mercies,
trampled underfoot they beloved Son,
mocked thy providence,
flattered thee with my lips,
broken thy covenant,
It is of thy compassion that I am not consumed.
Lead me to repentance, and save me from despair;
Let me come to thee renouncing, condemning, loathing myself,
but hoping in the grace that flows even to the chief of sinners.
At the cross may I contemplate the evil of sin, and abhor it,
look on him whom I pierced,
as one slain for me, and by me.
- From The Valley of Vision. A Bennett

If you have sinned, do not lie down without repentance; for the want of repentance after one has sinned makes the heart yet harder and harder.-- John Bunyan

No man is excluded from calling upon God, the gate of salvation is set open unto all men: neither is there any other thing which keepeth us back from entering in, save only our own unbelief. Calvin Commentary on Acts 2:21

An error gracefully acknowledged is a victory won. Caroline Gascoigne

A man does not mind being blamed for his faults, and being punished for them, and he patiently suffers much for them; but he becomes impatient if he is required to give them up. -- Goethe, _Maxims and Reflections_, early 19thC

A dead end street is a good place to turn around. Naomi Judd (1946-____)

Only a bad person needs to repent: only a good person can repent perfectly. The worse you are, the more you need it and the less you can do it.
C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

A governor of a certain state was visiting the state prison, and stopped to talk with a number of prisoners. They told him their story, and in every instance it was one of wrong suffered by an innocent person. There was one man, however, who admitted his crime and the justice of his sentence. "I must pardon you," said the governor; "I can't have you in here corrupting all these good men." --Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) _Lincoln's Wit_ [1958],

If men expect God to return to them in prosperity, they must return to Him in pentience. The flower avereted from the sun must turn toward it, to catch its genial smile.-- Thomas V Moore, A Commentary ofn Zechariah, 1856 ( on Zec 1:3.)

There is no carbon paper between the pages of life. Each day is new and God's mercies are freely available. How thankful I am that I don't have to make up for lost time with God. We live in a world where our days are packed with appointments and responsibilities. People and institutions often require the "make-up work," but relationship with God begins fresh each day -Donna Newton

I quit telling my husband"I'm sorry", when he said, "So's the rest of your family!" Pat Nordman

The New Testament word for repentance means changing one's mind so that one's views, values, goals, and ways are changed and one's whole life is lived differently. The change is radical, both inwardly and outwardly; mind and judgment, will and affections, behavior and lifestyle, motives and purposes, are all involved. Repenting means starting a new life.
J. I. Packer, Concise Theology, PG. 162.

Every time we say, 'I believe in the Holy Spirit,' we mean that we believe that there is a living God able and willing to enter human personality and change it.
J. B. Phillips, Plain Christianity 1954

A Christian is a person who has the possibility of innumerable new starts. Francis Schaeffer

A true repentance shuns the evil itself, more than the external suffering or the shame. Shakespeare

Repentance is in every view so desirable, so necessary, so suited to honor God, that I seek that above all. The tender heart, the broken and contrite spirit, are to me far above all the joys that I could ever hope for in this vale of tears. I long to be in my proper place, my hand on my mouth, and my mouth in the dust... I feel this to be safe ground. Here I cannot err... I am sure that whatever God may despise... He will not despise the broken and contrite heart. ... Charles Simeon (1759-1836)

A man should never be ashamed to own that he has been in the wrong, which is but saying, in other words, that he is wiser today than yesterday. Jonathan Swift

Let any man turn to God in earnest, let him begin to exercise himself unto godliness, let him seek to develop his powers of spiritual receptivity by trust and obedience and humility, and the results will exceed anything he may have hoped in his leaner and weaker days. ... A. W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God [1948]

Repentance is a grace of God's Spirit whereby a sinner is inwardly humbled and visibly reformed. -- THOMAS WATSON

God keeps open house for hungry sinners - THOMAS WATSON


Everything that needs to be said has already been said. But since no one was listening, everything must be said again. - André Gide, 1869 - 1951


Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.  Carrie Fisher


The birds are moulting. If only man could moult also -- his mind once a year its errors, his heart once a year its useless passions. - James Allen (1849 &endash; 1925)

One resolution I have made, and try always to keep, is this: "To rise above little things." --John Burroughs (1837-1921)

THE object of a New Year is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul and a new nose; new feet, a new backbone, new ears, and new eyes. Unless a particular man made New Year resolutions, he would make no resolutions. Unless a man starts afresh about things, he will certainly do nothing effective. Unless a man starts on the strange assumption that he has never existed before, it is quite certain that he will never exist afterwards. Unless a man be born again, he shall by no means enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. - G.K. Chesterton, 'Daily News.'

Every man naturally persuades himself that he can keep his resolutions, nor is he convinced of his imbecility but by length of time and frequency of experiment. Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)_Prayers and Meditations_

I think in terms of the day's resolutions, not the year's.   - Henry Moore (1898 - 1986)

Resolutions, like the good, die young. --Fulton John Sheen (1895-1979) _Thinking Life Through_ [1955]

Good resolutions are simply cheques that men draw on a bank where they have no account.--Oscar Wilde


In my day, we didn't have self-esteem, we had self-respect, and no more of it than we had earned. Jane Haddam

I respect everyone. I even respect journalists. Alexander Popov

Goodwill is earned by many acts; it can be lost by one.--- Duncan Stuart

When people do not respect us we are sharply offended; yet deep down in his private heart no man much respects himself. Mark Twain

Often nowadays we hear a question posed that is not really a question. It is an oblique assertion of what the ostensible questioner considers a self-evident truth. The question is: Should we not all respect and honor one's differences? The gravamen of the "question" invariably is that differences of race, ethnicity and sexuality all should be "respected" and "honored."
I disagree. Why should respect and honor accrue to accidents of birth? Given that they are accidents, what, precisely, is there to honor? Surely, respect is owed to, and honor should flow to _individuals_, for their attainments of intellectual or moral excellence, not merely because of any membership in any group. -- George Will


The lust for academic respectability is the major cause of intellectual whoredom. R J Rushdoony


Freedom is a package deal - with it comes responsibilities and consequences.

We are responsible for the effort, not the outcome.

We set the sail; God makes the wind.

It's my business to do God's business and it's His business to take care of my business.

None of us are responsible for all the things that happen to us, but we are responsible for the way we act when they do happen.

Why people get married: Because sooner or later, something is bound to happen which they can't blame on the government.

God says, 'Choose what you will and pay for it, ' Spanish proverb "

We cannot make events. Our business is wisely to improve them.
Samuel Adams (1722-1803) In "The Speaker's Electronic Reference Collection," AApex Software, 1994.

To keep your feet on the ground, carry some responsibility on your shoulders.Failure to hit the bull's-eye is never the fault of the target. --Gilbert Arland

I've often said, the only thing standing between me and greatness is me. -- Woody Allen New Yorker 1996

Chiefly the mould of a man's fortune is in his own hands. Francis Bacon. 1561-1626. Of Fortune.

When things go wrong it's rather tame
To find we are ourselves to blame,
It gets the trouble over quicker
To go and blame things on the Vicar.
The Vicar, after all, is paid
To keep us bright and undismayed
John Betjeman: "Blame the Vicar" -from "Church Poems", published by John Murray

Responsibility. A detachable burden easily shifted to shoulders of God, Fate, Fortune, Luck or one's neighbor. In the days of astrology it was customary to unload it upon a star. --Ambrose Bierce

The great thought, the great concern, the great anxiety of men is to restrict, as much as possible, the limits of their own responsibility.~Giosué Borsi

Remember this, that as Noah was drunk with his own wine, and as Goliath was beheaded with his own sword, and as the rose is destroyed by the canker which it breeds in itself, and as Agrippina was killed by Nero, to whom she gave breath, so if ever you are eternally destroyed, you will be destroyed by yourselves; if ever you are scourged to death, it will be by cords of your own making; and if ever the bitter cup of damnation be put into your hands, it will be found to be of your own preparing, mingling, and embittering!- Thomas Boston

The thing that will stop you from fulfilling your dreams is you. - Tom Bradley (1917-____) "The Impossible Dream," 1986.

Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice; itis not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.... William Jennings Bryan

Blame is for God and small children. Ralph Bunche (1904-1971) In "Papillon."

I did it to myself. It wasn't society...it wasn't a pusher, it wasn't being blind or being black or being poor. It was all my doing. Ray Charles, on his heroin addiction

Chains provide warmth against the cold blast of freedom. --:chollanamdo@mindspring.com in alt.quotations 2000

The price of greatness is responsibility - Churchill

The enemy is within the gates; it is with our own luxury, our own folly, our own criminality that we have to contend. - Cicero.

You can delegate authority, but not responsibility. Stephen W. Comiskey

We create the world in which we live; if that world becomes unfit for human life; it is because we tire of our responsibility~Cyril Connolly, Enemies of Promise (1938)

I only set the stage. You pull your own strings.
John Milton aka Satan, in Devil's Advocate 1997

Quote from the Boss... "I didn't say it was your fault. I said I was going to blame it on you." Robert J Elkins

Cripple him, and you have a Sir Walter Scott. Lock him in a prison cell, and you have a John Bunyan. Bury him in the snows of Valley Forge, and you have a George Washington. Raise him in abject poverty and you have an Abraham Lincoln. Strike him down with infantile paralysis, and he becomes Franklin Roosevelt. Burn him so severely that the doctors say he'll never walk again, and you have a Glenn Cunningham -- who set the world's one mile record in 1934. Deafen him and you have a Ludwig van Beethoven. Have him or her born black in a society filled with racial discrimination, and you have a Booker T. Washington, a Marian Anderson, a George Washington Carver. Call him a slow learner, "retarded," and write him off as uneducable, and you have an Albert Einstein. As one man summed it up: Life is about 20% in what happens to us and 80% in the way we respond to the events. Ted Engstrom

A man who enjoys responsibility usually gets it. A man who merely likes exercising authority usually loses it.~Malcolm S. Forbes

We improve ourselves by victories over ourself. There must be contests, and we must win.
Edward Gibbon (1737-1794)

We must have a citizenship less concerned about what the government can do for it and more anxious about what it can do for the nation. Warren Harding (1865-1923) Republican National Convention, 7 Jun 1916.

There are inalienable obligations as well as inalienable rights.--Abraham Joshua Herschel

Those who cannot think or take responsibility for themselves need, and clamor for, a leader.--Hermann Hesse (1877-1962)_Reflections_ [1974], #106

I thought I was doing the right thing, I was obeying orders, and now, of course, I see that it was unnecessary and wrong. But I don't know what you mean by being upset about these things because I didn't personally murder anybody. I was just the director of the extermination program in Auschwitz. --Rudolf Hess (1894-1987), Commandant of Auschwitz, April 11, 1946 interview with Dr. Leon Goldensohn, from "Nuremberg Interviews," Goldensohn, ed. Robert Gellately, responding to question from Goldensohn about whether Hoess' role in the extermination of 2.5 million at Auschwitz was upsetting to him

God givers every bird its food, but he does not throw it intothe nest.-- J. G. Holland

Responsibilities gravitate to the person who can shoulder them.... Elbert Hubbard

Personal responsibility is a difficult thing to ask for in a nation which has attempted to find a societal "root cause" for all things. -- Shapley R. Hunter, 1992

Duty is ours; consequences are God's. GENERAL STONEWALL JACKSON

No man was ever endowed with a right without being at the same time saddled with a responsibility. --Gerald W. Johnson

Keep always in your mind, that, with due submission to Providence, a man of genius has been seldom ruined but by himself. -- Samuel Johnson: Letter to Joseph Baretti

He that embarks on the voyage of life will always wish to advance rather by the impulse of the wind than the strokes of the oar; and many foulder in their passage; while they lie waiting for the gale. Johnson

We must exchange the philosophy of excuse -- what I am is beyond my control for the philosophy of responsibility. Barbara Jordan (1936-1966) Speech at Bar Association, 1967.

[I]t is...the individual's task to differentiate himself from all the others & stand on his own feet. All collective identities...interfere with the fulfillment of this task. Such collective identities are crutches for the lame, shields for the timid, beds for the lazy....--C. G. Jung, "Late Thoughts," in _Memories, Dreams, Reflections_

The measure of our future success and happiness will not be the quality of the cards we are dealt by unseen hands, but the poise and wisdom with which we play them.`` Choose to play each hand to the best of your ability without wasting the time or energy it takes to complain about either the cards or the dealer or the often unfair rules of the game.`` Play both the winning and the losing hands as best you can, then fold the cards and ante up for the next deal! ... Joe Klock, Like Klockwork: The Whimsy, Wit, and (sometime)Wisdom of a Key Largo Curmudgeon by Joe Klock

I believe that we are solely responsible for our choices, and we have to accept the consequences of every deed, word, and thought throughout our lifetime. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross (1926-____) In "The Speaker's Electronic Reference Collection," AApex Software,1994.

The reason people blame things on previous generations is that there's only one other choice. Doug Larson

he game of life is not so much in holding a good hand as playing a poor hand well. H. T. Leslie

A man may fall many times but he won't be a failure until he says someone pushed him. - Elmer G. Letterman

Responsibility by definition means answerable or accountable for. And what is a person responsible for? Everything he thinks, says or does. Why? Because no matter what or whom one can blame for the circumstances of his life, he is still stuck with the consequences of everything he thinks, says or does. People can be terribly unreliable but never irresponsible. Thus there is no way a person can be irresponsible because everyone is answerable or accountable for everything he thinks, say or does, does not do or neglects to do. Until people fully realise that they are totally responsible for their lives, we as a society collectively will be operating under a false and distorted assumption of what responsibility means. Sidney Madwed

We have the Bill of Rights. What we need is a Bill of Responsibilities. Bill Maher, 1995

Everything that used to be a sin is now a disease. Bill Maher, 1995

We are responsible for actions performed in response to circumstances for which we are not responsible.-- Allan Massie, A Question of Loyalties

The feeling of a direct responsibility of the individual to God is almost wholly a creation of Protestantism.-- John Stuart Mill

Nothing of all these evils hath befallen me
But justly; I myself have brought them on;
Sole author I, sole cause.
John Milton. (1608&endash;1674). Samson Agonistes

A right without an attendant responsibility is as unreal as a sheet of paper which has only one side. Felix Morley

I've learned that our background and circumstances may have influenced who we are, but we are responsible for who we become. James Rhinehart

I believe that every right implies a responsibility; every opportunity, an obligation; every possession, a duty. - John D. Rockefeller Jr.

One of the annoying things about believing in free will and individual responsibility is the difficulty in finding someone to blame your troubles on. And when you do find someone, it's remarkable how often their picture turns up on your driver's license. P. J. O'Rourke

There's only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences. P.J. O'Rourke

Men at some time are masters of their fates:
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
But in ourselves, that we are underlings.
William Shakespeare. Julius Cæsar. Act i. Sc

Man is condemned to be free. Condemned, because he did not create himself, yet is nevertheless at liberty, and from the moment he is thrown into the world, he is responsible for everything he does. - Jean Paul Sartre

The great appeal of fatalism is as a refuge from the terror of responsibility. Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.

Victimization status is the modern promised land of absolution from personal responsibility.-- Laura Schlesinger

Man must cease attributing his problems to his environment, and learn again to exercise his will - his personal responsibility in the realm of faith and morals. -- Albert Schweitzer

I've always known I was gifted, which is not the easiest thing in the world for a person to know, because you're not responsible for your gift, only for what you do with it Hazel Scott (1920-1981) Interview, Dec 1972; in "Notes and Tones," by Arthur Taylor, 1977.

You can't keep blaming yourself, Marge. Just blame yourself once and move on. Homer Simpson

Everybody, soon or late, sits down to a banquet of consequences. -Robert Louis Stevenson

Many modern psychotherapists have adopted as their credo, Socrates' declaration that "the unexamined life is not worth living." But for modern man that is not enough. We should pledge ourselves to the proposition that the irresponsible life is not worth living. --Thomas S. Szasz _Law, Liberty and Psychiatry_ [1965]

Any set of social and economic arrangements which is not founded on the acceptance of individual responsibility will do nothing but harm. We are all responsible for our own actions. We cannot blame society if we disobey the law. We simply cannot delegate the exercise of mercy and generosity to others.
Margaret Thatcher, speech to the Church of Scotland General Assembly, 21.5.88

We want a society where people are free to make choices, to make mistakes, to be generous and compassionate. This is what we mean by a moral society; not a society where the state is responsible for everything, and no one is responsible for the state. -- Margaret Thatcher

I think we've been through a period where too many people have been given to understand that if they have a problem, it's the government's job to cope with it. "I have a problem, I'll get a grant." "I'm homeless, the government must house me." They're casting their problem on society. And, you know, there is no such thing as society. There are individual men and women, and there are families. And no government can do anything except through people, and people must look to themselves first. It's our duty to look after ourselves and then, also to look after our neighbour. People have got the entitlements too much in mind, without the obligations. There's no such thing as entitlement, unless someone has first met an obligation. - - Margaret Thatcher"Aids, Education and the Year 2000," Woman's Own, 3 October 1987,Page 10

There is a living tapestry of men and women, and the beauty of that tapestry and the quality of our lives will depend on how much each of us is prepared to take responsibility for ourselves. And each of us, by our own efforts, is prepared to turn round and help those less fortunate. - - Margaret Thatcher"Aids, Education and the Year 2000," Woman's Own, 3 October 1987,Page 10

As human beings, we are endowed with freedom of choice, and we cannot shuffle off our responsibility upon the shoulders of God or nature. We must shoulder it ourselves. It is up to us. A. J. Toynbee

Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first. Mark Twain

Don't go around saying God owes you something. God owes you nothing. He is here first. -- GW, adapted from Mark Twain

Few things help an individual more than to place responsibility upon him and to let him know that you trust him. --Booker T. Washington

This being the Age of Therapism, my local school, which has a leaking roof, has a resident team of forty counselors. Talk and listen, talk and listen. All will be cured.
Therapism absolves us of personal blame, assures us that there is no such thing as a moral problem, only one of confusion, for which the cure is counseling. Look at it our way, beg the therapists, the universe is essentially good! The fat aren't greedy, or genetically doomed: no, their unaesthetic shape is caused by abusive fathers. As in Erewhon, our criminals are mentally ill, poor things, and the ill (as in AIDS) are the criminals: they didn't eat right. All things are mendable; the pedophile and the rapist can be cured by talk and investigation of the past; the police, unlikely to catch the robber, can put the robbed in touch with their Victims' Support Group. All shall be well, and all shall be well. Once Christianity was the opiate of the people; now its sleeping draught is Therapism. Fay Weldon, 1998

As a reporter, I interviewed, traveled with, reported on, and deplored Richard Nixon's actions for much of his career. As a columnist, I frequently criticized his presidency. Later, after his political career was ended, I studied Nixon and his record, talked to his friends and enemies, reviewed my own words and memories, and concluded that he was neither evil nor a victim, except of himself--and we're all that kind of victim. - Tom Wicker _Character Above All_

Misfortunes one can endure: they come from outside, they are accidents. But to suffer for one's own faults--ah! there is the sting of life.
Oscar Wilde, _Lady Windermere's Fan_

Often nowadays we hear a question posed that is not really a question. It is an oblique assertion of what the ostensible questioner considers a self-evident truth. The question is: Should we not all respect and honor one's differences? The gravamen of the "question" invariably is that differences of race, ethnicity and sexuality all should be "respected" and "honored."
I disagree. Why should respect and honor accrue to accidents of birth? Given that they are accidents, what, precisely, is there to honor? Surely, respect is owed to, and honor should flow to _individuals_, for their attainments of intellectual or moral excellence, not merely because of any membership in any group. -- George Will


Go my friends and shed no tears,
I must lie here till Christ appears
Anonymous epitaph 

In the bitter cold of winter the trees stand bare and seem to be dead. But in the spring, they burst forth into leaf and flower, and the first fruits begin to appear. So it was with the Master's death and resurrection, and so it is with all who faithfully bear the burden of suffering and death. Though they may seem crushed and dead, they will yet bear beautiful flowers and glorious fruits of eternal life.

To know the road ahead, ask those coming back.... Chinese Proverb

Men and women disbelieve the Easter story not because of the evidence but in spite of it. It is not that they weigh the evidence with open minds, assess its relevance and cogency and finally decide that it is suspect or inadequate. Instead, they start with the a priori conviction that the resurrection of Christ would constitute such an incredible event that it could not be accepted or believed without scientific demonstration of an irrefutable nature. But it is idle to demand proof of this sort for any event in history. Historical evidence, from its very nature, can never amount to more than a very high degree of probability. ... J. N. D. Anderson (1908- ), Christianity: the Witness of History [1969]

Let us always remember that the end of the resurrection is eternal happiness, of whose excellence scarcely the minutist part can be described by all that human tongues can say. For though we are truly told that the kingdom of God will be full of light, and gladness, and felcity, and glory, yet the things meant by these words remain most remote from sense, and as it were involved in enigma, until the day arrive on which he will manifest his glory to us face to face. JOHN CALVIN

Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust; in sure and certain hope of the Resurrection into eternal life . . . .
Book of Common Prayer "The Burial of the Dead" (1662)

Morning breaks upon the tomb,
Jesus scatters all its gloom.
Day of triumph through the skies--
See the glorious Saviour rise.

Christians! Dry your flowing tears,
Chase those unbelieving fears;
Look on his deserted grave,
Doubt no more his power to save.

Ye who are of death afraid,
Triumph in the scattered shade:
Drive your anxious cares away,
See the place where Jesus lay.
Collyer [before 1834]

The Watergate cover-up reveals the true nature of humanity. Even political zealots at the pinnacle of power will, in the crunch, save their own necks, even at the expense of the ones they profess to serve so loyally. But the apostles could not deny Jesus because they had seen Him face to face, and they knew He had risen from the dead.
No, you can take it from an expert in cover-ups -- I've lived through Watergate -- that nothing less than a resurrected Christ could have caused those men to maintain to their dying whispers that Jesus is alive and is Lord. Two thousand years later, nothing less than the power of the risen Christ could inspire Christians around the world to remain faithful -- despite prison, torture, and death..- "BreakPoint with Chuck Colson" 28 Mar 02

The body of Benjamin Franklin, Printer (like the cover of an old book, its contents torn out and stripped of its lettering and gilding), lies here, food for worms; but the work shall not be lost, for it will (as he believed) appear once more in a new and more elegant edition, revised and corrected by the Author.
Epitaph on Benjamin Franklin's grave, composed by Benjamin Franklin.

Receive every day as a resurrection from death, as a new enjoyment of life; meet every rising sun with such sentiments of God's goodness, as if you had seen it, and all things, new-created upon your account: and under the sense of so great a blessing, let your joyful heart praise and magnify so good and glorious a Creator.
William Law, A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life [1728]

Our striving is not for survival but for resurrection.---Mary McGrory quoting a dissenting Bishop in discussion of _The Challenge of Peace: God's Promise and Our Response_, a document written in 1983 on the subject of unilateral disarmament.

Because upon the first glad Easter day
The stone that sealed His tomb was rolled away,
So, through the deepening shadows of death's night,
Men see an open door... beyond it, light.
Ida Norton Munson

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.
J.R.R. Tolkien

Christ, the Lord, is risen today, Alleluia!
Sons of men and angels say, Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!
Sing, ye heavens, and earth, reply, Alleluia!

Love's redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Lo! the Sun's eclipse is over, Alleluia!
Lo! He sets in blood no more, Alleluia!

Vain the stone, the watch, the seal, Alleluia!
Christ hath burst the gates of hell, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids His rise, Alleluia!
Christ hath opened Paradise, Alleluia!

Lives again our glorious King, Alleluia!
Where, O death, is now thy sting? Alleluia!
Once He died our souls to save, Alleluia!
Where thy victory, O grave? Alleluia!

Soar we now where Christ hath led, Alleluia!
Following our exalted Head, Alleluia!
Made like Him, like Him we rise, Alleluia!
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!

Hail, the Lord of earth and heaven, Alleluia!
Praise to Thee by both be given, Alleluia!
Thee we greet triumphant now, Alleluia!
Hail, the resurrection day, Alleluia!

King of glory, Soul of bliss, Alleluia!
Everlasting life is this, Alleluia!
Thee to know, Thy power to prove, Alleluia!
Thus to sing and thus to love, Alleluia!

Hymns of praise then let us sing, Alleluia!
Unto Christ, our heavenly King, Alleluia!
Who endured the cross and grave, Alleluia!
Sinners to redeem and save. Alleluia!

But the pains that He endured, Alleluia!
Our salvation have procured, Alleluia!
Now above the sky He's King, Alleluia!
Where the angels ever sing. Alleluia!

Jesus Christ is risen today, Alleluia!
Our triumphant holy day, Alleluia!
Who did once upon the cross, Alleluia!
Suffer to redeem our loss. Alleluia!
Charles Wesley, 1739


To retire is to begin to die.--Pablo Casals (1876-1973)

return of Christ

From time to time, as we all know, a sect appears in our midst announcing that the world will very soon come to an end. Generally, by some slight confusion or miscalculation, it is the sect that comes to an end.-G K Chesterton

We must never speak to simple, excitable people about "the Day" without emphasizing again and again the utter impossibility of prediction. We must try to show them that that impossibility is an essential part of the doctrine. If you do not believe our Lord's words, why do you believe in His return at all? And if you do believe them, must you not put away from you, utterly and forever, any hope of dating that return? ... C. S. Lewis (1898-1963), The World's Last Night

I have resigned from the planning committee and am on the welcoming committee.- Donna Newton on fellowship with those who have differing views on the return of Christ.

Neither the nearness nor the remoteness of Christ's return is a rule to regulate us in the ordering of our temporal affairs. Spiritual preparedness is the great matter. Arthur W. Pink  


The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law. -- Deut. 29:29

The most perfect way of seeking God, and the most suitable order, is not for us to attempt with bold curiosity to penetrate to the investigation of His essence, which we ought more to adore than meticulously to search out, but for us to contemplate Him in His works, whereby He renders Himself near and familiar to us, and in some manner communicates Himself. ... John Calvin (1509-1564)

In natures, we see God, as it were, like the sun in a picture; in the law, as the sun in a cloud; in Christ we see Him in His beams; He being 'the brightness of His glory, and the exact image of His person. - STEPHEN CHARNOCK

[Christians], at their best, know that often they don't know. They do not have all the answers. They do not have God in their pocket. We cannot answer every question that any bright boy in the back row might ask. We have only light enough to walk by. Howard A. Johnson (1915- )

God has spoken.
There is a revelation of His will which we have in God's Word. On this basis we demand that the pronouncement of Gid's Word be obeyed in each clash of principles. Human interference or discretion is only to be decisive where God's word is unclear.
Everyone agrees that human insight must yield to God's pronouncements.The disagreement begins because our opponents do not believe God Himself has spoken while we confess that He has spoken.
Abraham Kuyper, The Standard, 7 June 1873

When God wants to speak and deal with us, he does not avail himself of an angel but of parents, or the pastor, or of our neighbour. Martin Luther

God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but on trees, and flowers, and clouds, and stars. Martin Luther

The secular university is scandalized by the claims of revelation. Those who have, for whatever historical reasons, become seekers-on-principle, cannot tolerate the allegation that truth is a gift. To have to receive offends those who have determined to take.... Louis Mackey (b. 1926)

The purpose of revelation is restoration, the renewal in us of that likeness to God which man lost by sin.---- Stephen Neill in The Lion Christian Quotation Collection, 1997


I don't get even, I get odder.

The best way to get even is to forget.

You cannot get ahead while you are getting even.-- Dick Armey

Revenge is a dish best served cold. --Pierre Ambroise Francois Choderlos, de LaClos [1741-1803],_Les Liaisons Dangereuse

I don't think anyone should be surprised if, while we turn the other cheek of course, at least point out that we have just been slapped! - James Miller  

What though the field be lost?
All is not lost; the unconquerable Will,
And study of revenge, immortal hate,
And courage never to submit or yield:
And what is else not to be overcome?
John Milton. 1608-1674. Paradise Lost. Book i, 105-109

If you prick us do we not bleed?
If you tickle us do we not laugh?
If you poison us do we not die?
And if you wrong us
shall we not revenge?
~ WS, The Merchant of Venice, III,i

Revenge has no more quenching effect on emotions than salt water has on thirst. -Walter Weckler


Errors are sown thicker in times of revival in the church of God than at any other times.- -- Isaac Ambrose

It is true that [people] are praying for world-wide revival. But it would be more timely, and more scriptural, for prayer to be made to the Lord of the harvest, that He would raise up and thrust forth laborers who would fearlessly and faithfully preach those truths which are calculated to bring about a revival.... A. W. Pink (1886-19562

O that in me the sacred fire might now begin to glow,
Burn up the dross of base desire,
And make the mountains flow.
Charles Wesley


The modern liberal will strike a militant posture in defense of rights, but he can no longer explain why that biped who conjugates verbs should be the bearer of rights.‚ Hadley Arkes, Natural Rights and the Right to Choose

No one has a right to happiness. -- Eric Hoffer

Individual rights are not subject to a public vote; a majority has no right to vote away the rights of a minority; the political function of rights is precisely to protect minorities from oppression by majorities (and the smallest minority on earth is the individual). Ayn Rand  


In addition this weeks "Time" magazine helpfully advises us on the risks of dying from CJD by eating beef on the bone, compared to other causes of death. These are:
1 in 200 Smoking 10 cigarettes per day
1 in 8,000 Road traffic accident
1 in 100,000 Murder
1 in 600,000,000 Eating beef on the bone
(note that some helpful statistician on radio 5 this week qualified this as the chance on winning the UK's national lottery jackpot 6 weeks running).

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool.
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach for another is to risk involvement.
To expose your feelings is to risk exposing your true self.
To place your ideas, your dreams before a crowd is to risk their loss.
To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying.
To believe is to risk despair.
To try is to risk failure.
But risks must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.
The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing.
They may avoid suffering and sorrow, but they cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love, live.
Chained by their attitudes they are slaves; they have forfeited their freedom.
Only a person who risks is free.

Behold the turtle. He makes progress only when he sticks his neck out. James B. Conant (1893-1978)

Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.
Robert F. Kennedy (1925-1968) In "The Speaker's Electronic Reference Collection," AApex Software,1994.


This charter has been forced from the king. It constitutes an insult to the Holy See, a serious weakening of the royal power, a disgrace to the English nation, a danger to all Christendom, since this civil war obstructs the crusade. - Pope Innocent III, Papal Bull condemning Magna Carta, 24 August 1215.

We are so much bounden to the See of Rome that we cannot do too much honour to it... for we received from that See our Crown Imperial.-Henry VIII, in a remark to Thomas More, displays the loyalty that moved Pope Leo X to title him Defender of the Faith on 11 October 1521

Mel Gibson has come under fire for being hard on Jews in his film "The Passion of the Christ" &emdash; but apparently, he feels that Protestants are also doomed to damnation. In fact, it looks like Gibson, a conservative Catholic, believes that his Episcopalian wife could be going to hell.
Gibson was interviewed by the Herald Sun in Australia, and the reporter asked the star if Protestants are denied eternal salvation. "There is no salvation for those outside the Church," Gibson replied. "I believe it."
He elaborated: "Put it this way. My wife is a saint. She's a much better person than I am. Honestly. She's, like, Episcopalian, Church of England. She prays, she believes in God, she knows Jesus, she believes in that stuff. And it's just not fair if she doesn't make it, she's better than I am. But that is a pronouncement from the chair. I go with it." - Jeannette Walls with Ashley Pearson,Mel Gibson says his wife could be going to hell,MSNBC,Feb. 10, 2004


The biggest mischief in the past century has been perpetrated by Rousseau with his doctrine of the goodness of human nature. The mob and the intellectuals derived from it the vision of a Golden Age which would arrive without fail once the noble human race could act according to its whims. Jakob Burckhardt

Rousseau, sir, is a very bad man. I would sooner sign a sentence for his transportation, than that of any felon who has gone from the Old Bailey these many years. Yes, I should like to have him work in the plantations.-- Dr. Johnson, in Boswell's _Life of Johnson_, 1791

He is the father of the romantic movement, the initiator of systems of thought which infer non-human facts from human emotions, and the inventor of the political philosophy of pseudo-democratic dictatorships as opposed to traditional absolute monarchies. Ever since his time, those who considered themselves reformers have been divided into two groups, those who followed him and those who followed Locke.... At the present time [1945], Hitler is an outcome of Rousseau; Roosevelt and Churchill, of Locke. -- Bertrand Russell, _A History of Western Philosophy_


Princes are like to heavenly bodies, which cause good or evil times, and which have much veneration but no rest.
Francis Bacon. 1561-1626. Of Empire.


Rule no. 1 The customer is always right.
Rule no. 2 When the customer is wrong, go to rule no. 1.

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Last Modified: 3/7/05