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QUESTION Quotes

The beginning of wisdom is found in doubting;
by doubting we come to the question, and by seeking we may come upon the truth.
-- Pierre Abelard

"We need each other, deeper than anyone ever dares to admit even to themselves. I think it is a genetic imperative that we huddle together and hold on to each other. There is no question in my mind that there is nothing else in life, really, than friendship."
-- Patch Adams

The simplest questions are the most profound. Where were you born? Where is your home? Where are you going? What are you doing? Think about these once in a while and watch your answers change. ~Richard Bach

"People would do well to ask themselves how many of their ambitions and aspirations derive from the type of economic system they inhabit and the insecurity and exhaustion it creates, and question the sense and purpose of a society where control of a large portion of life is abdicated under contract in the labour market, and where immense creativity and potential is stifled by the need to do difficult and repetitive tasks in order to earn a wage."
-- Tony Benn

"What business entrepreneurs are to the economy, social entrepreneurs are to social change. They are the driven, creative individuals who question the status quo, exploit new opportunities, refuse to give up, and remake the world for the better."
-- David Bornstein

The liberal political tradition provides no coherent response to the obvious question: Why should the rights of ownership prevail over the rights of democratic citizenry in determining who is to manage the affairs of a business enterprise whose policies might directly affect as many as half a million employees, and whose choice of product, location, and technology touches entire communities and beyond?
-- Samuel Bowels

“Whether there are innately female leadership styles... is not really the right question. It is more important to ask why there has been so little attention paid to women leaders over the years as well as why the styles of leading more often exhibited by women are particularly useful at this critical moment in history.”
--
Charlotte Bunch

* “Feminism is a transformational force, an individual and social force. It is a way of looking at the world–a questioning of power/domination issues, an affirmation of women’s energy.”
-- Charlotte Bunch

Thousands of years ago the question was asked; ''Am I my brother's keeper?'' That question has never yet been answered in a way that is satisfactory to civilized society. Yes, I am my brother's keeper. I am under a moral obligation to him that is inspired, not by any maudlin sentimentality but by the higher duty I owe myself. What would you think me if I were capable of seating myself at a table and gorging myself with food and saw about me the children of my fellow beings starving to death.
-- Eugene V. Debs, 1908

* We live in a complex world and the motivation to use violence to solve problems needs to be seriously questioned. It is essential that we help our children perceive peaceful alternatives. We need to use these troubled times as an opportunity to create a new vision for the future.
-- Naomi Drew

* Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is to not stop questioning.
--Albert Einstein

“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery every day. Never lose a holy curiosity.”
-- Albert Einstein

All my life I had been looking for something, and everywhere I turned someone tried to tell me what it was. I accepted their answers too, though they were often in contradiction and even self-contradictory. I was naïve. I was looking for myself and asking everyone except myself questions which I, and only I, could answer. It took me a long time and much painful boomeranging of my expectations to achieve a realization everyone else appears to have been born with: that I am nobody but myself. –Ralph Ellison

“My generation was bold enough to question many things and to seek spirituality over religion. We haven’t succeeded in overthrowing the old order yet, and maybe there are some meanings to be found in my story about coming of age spiritually in the latter half of the twentieth century.”
-- Matthew Fox

Nonviolence, therefore, can be described as an honest and diligent pursuit of truth. It could also mean the search for the meaning of life or the purpose of life, questions that have tormented humankind for centuries. The fact that we have not been able to find satisfactory answers to these questions does not mean there is no answer. It only means we have not searched with any degree of honesty. The search has to be both external and internal. We seek to ignore this crucial search because the sacrifices it demands are revolutionary. It means moving away from greed, selfishness, possessiveness, and dominance to love, compassion, understanding, and respect.
-- Arun Gandhi

There is a point at which everything becomes simple and there is no longer any question of choice, because all you have staked will be lost if you look back. Life's point of no return.
-- Dag Hammarskjöld

The question is...whether we shall, by whatever means, succeed in reconstituting the natural world as the true terrain of politics, rehabilitating the personal experience of human beings as the initial measure of things, placing morality above politics and responsibility above our desires, in making human community meaningful, in returning content to human speech, in reconstituting, as the focus of all social action, the autonomous, integral, and dignified human "I,"...
-- Vaclav Havel

"America has the technology and resources to meet all its energy needs while safeguarding the earth's climate. The urgent question now is, 'Do we have the will?'
~ Denis Hayes

And when at some future date the high court of history sits in judgment on each of us, recording whether in our brief span of service we fulfilled our responsibilities to the state, our success or failure, in whatever office we hold, will be measured by the answers to four questions: First, were we truly men of courage... Second, were we truly men of judgment... Third, were we truly men of integrity... Finally, were we truly men of dedication?—
-- John F. Kennedy, 1961

Yes, and you should question your government.
-- Jessica Lange

* Nonviolence is the answer to the crucial political moral questions of our time. --Martin Luther King, Jr.

Cowardice asks the question: is it safe? Expediency asks the question: is it politic? Vanity asks the question: is it popular? But conscience asks the question: is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular- but one must take it simply because it is right. -- Martin Luther King, Jr.

* "Life's most persistent and urgent question is, What are you doing for others?" -- Martin Luther King, Jr.

* We have moved into an era where we are called upon to raise certain basic questions about the whole society. We are still called upon to give aid to the beggar who finds himself in misery and agony on life's highway. But one day, we must ask the question of whether an edifice which produces beggars must not be restructured and refurbished.
-- Martin Luther King, Jr

A true revolution of values will soon cause us to question the fairness and justice of many of our present policies...
-- Martin Luther King, Jr

“What do I owe to my times, to my country, to my neighbors, to my friends? Such are the questions which a virtuous man ought often to ask himself.”
-- Johann Kaspar Lavater

"Like winds and sunsets, wild things were taken for granted until progress began to do away with them. Now we face the question whether a still higher 'standard of living' is worth its cost in things natural, wild, and free. For us of the minority, the opportunity to see geese is more important than television, and the chance to find a pasque-flower is a right as inalienable as free speech."
~ Aldo Leopold

There is frequently more to be learned from the unexpected questions of a child than the discourses of men.
-- John Locke

The great question is, can war be outlawed from the world?
If so, it would mark the greatest advance in civilization since the Sermon on the Mount.
-- Douglas MacArthur

"The most revolutionary thing anybody can do is to raise good, honest and generous children who will question the answers of people who say the answer is violence. That's what the schools should be doing." -- Colman McCarthy

* "It's too easy only to blame the militarists, racists, sexists and other pushers of violence for the mess we're in. What is harder is self-examination, moving beyond caring by looking inward to ask the personal question: What more should I be doing everyday to bring about a peace and justice based world, whether across the ocean or across the living room?" -- Colman McCarthy

* "The young, free to act on their initiative, can lead their elders in the direction of the unknown... The children, the young, must ask the questions that we would never think to ask, but enough trust must be re-established so that the elders will be permitted to work with them on the answers."
-- Margaret Mead

An unconscious people, an indoctrinated people, a people fed only partisan information and opinion that confirm their own bias, a people made morbidly obese in mind and spirit by the junk food of propaganda is less inclined to put up a fight, ask questions and be skeptical. And just as a democracy can die of too many lies, that kind of orthodoxy can kill us, too.
-- Bill Moyers

* "This leads to a question -- if a great many people are for a certain project, is it necessarily right? If the vast majority is for it, is it even more certainly right? This, to be sure, is one of the tricky points of democracy. The minority often turns out to be right, and though one believes in the efficacy of the democratic process, one has also to recognize that the demand of the many for a particular project at a particular time may mean only disaster."
-- Frances Perkins
Don't Make Assumptions. Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.
-- Miguel Angel Ruiz

I do not pretend to start with precise questions. I do not think you can start with anything precise. You have to achieve such precision as you can, as you go along.
-- Bertrand Russell

In all affairs it's a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted.
-- Bertrand Russell

* "I'm tired of being labelled anti-American because I ask questions."
-- Susan Sarandon

"Whether children have first amendment rights is a vexed legal question, but what is not in question is that they someday will. Constraining them from expressing their views is no preparation for exercising those rights."
-- Crispin Sartwell

New opinions often appear first as jokes and fancies, then as blasphemies and treason, then as questions open to discussion, and finally as established truths.
-- George Bernard Shaw

The first part of the Answer to the Question of the 'Meaning of Life' is about the way to truly Live. And that is to love and be loved by the people in your life with all your heart, and to seek to live in the Now – to strive to be present with them, and remember this mission and purpose through the struggles and the joy, and to share together the amazing journey of life. The second part is to see Life as more than your own life and your own time. To see that throughout time, humanity has shared a vision of ‘peace on earth’. And though it is an impossible dream, only a life lived in service to humanity – in honor of this shared goal – can help to validate the struggles of the 93 billion people who have lived and died, the 7 billion dreams of those alive today, and the hope of humanity to come. The third is to find a balance between the two – between living your individual life to the fullest, while striving to help humanity evolve to a higher consciousness of compassion, meaning and purpose.
-- Robert Alan Silverstein

* "I would like the church to be a place where the questions of people are honored rather than a place where we have all the answers. The church has to get out of propaganda. The future will involve us in more interfaith dialogue. ... We cannot say we have the only truth."
-- Bishop John Shelby Spong

* This question of whether violence or law shall prevail between states is the most vital of the problems of our eventful era, and the most serious in its repercussions. The beneficial result of a secure world peace are almost inconceivable, but even more inconceivable are the consequences of the threatening world war which many misguided people are prepared to precipitate. The advocates of pacifism are well aware how meager are their resources of personal influence and power. They know that they are still few in number and weak in authority, but when they realistically consider themselves and the ideal they serve, they see themselves as the servants of the greatest of all causes.
-- Bertha von Suttner

Loyalty to a petrified opinion never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul.
-- Mark Twain

In religion and politics people's beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second-hand, and without examination, from authorities who have not themselves examined the questions at issue but have taken them at second-hand from other non-examiners, whose opinions about them were not worth a brass farthing.
-- Mark Twain

* "Nonviolence is the answer for the questions of our time. Love will conquer evil every time."
-- James Twyman

In a world that we know can feed itself, upwards of 40,000 children die very day from conditions of malnutrition. Surely we must question why we are allowing this carnage to continue
-- Betty Williams

* The human heart is the first home of democracy. It is where we embrace our questions: Can we be equitable? Can we be generous? Can we listen with our whole beings, not just our minds, and offer our attention rather than our opinion? And do we have enough resolve in our hearts to act courageously, relentlessly, without giving up, trusting our fellow citizens to join us in our determined pursuit—a living democracy?
~ Terry Tempest Williams

“There's a collective knowing that a dimension of reality exists beyond the material plane, and that sense of knowing is causing a mystical resurgence on the planet today. It's not just children who are looking for a missing piece. It is a very mature outlook to question the nature of our reality.”
-- Marianne Williamson

I was deeply concerned then, and have become more concerned since, that unless we can deal with the questions of development and the questions of poverty, there's no way that we're going to have a peaceful world for our children.
-- James Wolfensohn

 

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