Humans always segregate — on their most observable characteristics, when left to themselves; when interfered with, on characteristics less observable.
Identity, that spectator of what he calls himself,
That net and aggregate of energies in transient combination.
Great geniuses, Emerson said, have the shortest biographies. They do not: but for most of us our personal history is all that we are and for them it is next to nothing.
Fame is wasted on the famous.
Unrequited love drives men to suicide, and unrequited hate drives them to murder.
Our politics is what we call the violence we wish to visit on our fellows and lack the strength and courage to undertake personally: a neatly-bound, clearly-labeled package of all our worst impulses.
The good are not holy, and the holy are not good.
If you must have the last word, it’s because you need it, and if you need it, it won’t help.
Humans, though naturally curious, are also highly trainable, and when we are punished often enough for noticing something we will eventually refrain.
To fend for oneself in a high civilization demands a certain cognitive minimum; when too many lack it the civilization lowers itself to meet them, and the process is hastened by letting them vote.
Compared with virtue, all vice is harmless.