Quotes 1



Generally speaking, the errors of religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous.

~ David Hume

All great truths begin as blasphemies.

~ George Bernard Shaw

... it is all over with priests and gods when man becomes scientific. Moral: science is the forbidden as such. It alone is forbidden. Science is the FIRST sin, the ORIGINAL sin. THIS ALONE IS MORALITY. "Thou shalt not know" - the rest follows.
~ Friedrich Nietzsche

There is nothing so frightful as ignorance in action.

~ J.W. Von Goethe

Science is a mechanism, a way of trying to improve your knowledge of nature. It's a system for testing your thoughts against the universe, and seeing whether they match.
~ Isaac Asimov

Many secrets of art and nature are thought by the unlearned to be magical.
~ Sir Francis Bacon

It is not the fruits of scientific research that elevate man and enrich his nature, but the urge to understand, the intellectual work, creative or receptive.
~ Albert Einstein

One of the grand fundamental principles of Mormonism is to receive truth. Let it come from where it may.
~ An American Prophet's Record: The Diaries and Journals of Joseph Smith, p. 395

There are men on the moon who dress like Quakers and live to be nearly 1000 years old. We have little doubt that Joseph Smith felt quite comfortable in making this prophesy in the 1800s. How could he ever imagine man would one day walk the surface of the moon. We wonder why God didn't tell him before.

~ The Young Woman's Journal, vol. 3, pages 263 - 261. See reprint in Mormonism - Shadow or Reality? Jerald and Sandra Tanner, page 4.

In these respects we differ from the Christian world, for our religion will not clash with or contradict the facts of science in any particular way.
~ Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, vol. 14, page 116, May 14, 1871.

I now have ample appreciation of the extent to which the LDS Church conceals truth and controls the flow of information to members in order to maintain the faith of the saints ... In the face of a mountain of evidence, my heart finally accepted what part of my mind already knew. The Book of Mormon was created in the mind of Joseph Smith and is not a historical account of former inhabitants of the American continent ... I have since come to the conclusion that LDS leaders have realized that it is much harder to change truth than to change doctrine.
~Simon Southerton, Ph.D. DNA Genealogies of American Indians and the Book of Mormon. March 17, 2000. http://www.exmormon.o...

Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.
~ C.S. Lewis

Christianity is the most ridiculous, the most absurd, and bloody religion that has ever infected the world.
~ Voltaire


Human evolution is a theory in denial. With all of this fossil evidence (or lack thereof) it becomes increasingly clear to an earnest seeker that human evolution did not happen at all.

I believe the Earth is only about 6,ooo years old and these facts prove it.

Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.
Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Education consists mainly of what we have unlearned.
Mark Twain

"The Holy Koran, the Prophet’s teachings, the majority of Islamic scientists, and the actual facts all prove that the sun is running in its orbit . . . and that the earth is fixed and stable, spread out by God for his mankind. . . . Anyone who professed otherwise would utter a charge of falsehood toward God, the Koran, and the Prophet."

Sheik Abd el Aziz bin Baz, Saudi Arabia. 1966

"Is evolution a theory, a system, or a hypothesis? It is much more. It is a general postulate to which all theories, all hypotheses, all systems must henceforward bow and which they must satisfy in order to be thinkable and true. Evolution is a light which illuminates all facts, a trajectory which all lines of thought must follow. This is what evolution is."
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, as quoted by Theodosius Dobzhansky in "Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution"

“The animals of the world exist for their own reasons. They were not made for humans any more than black people were made for white, or women created for men.”
Alice Walker

Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction

~Blaise Pascal

At least two thirds of our miseries spring from human stupidity, human malice and those great motivators and justifiers of malice and stupidity, idealism, dogmatism and proselytizing zeal on behalf of religious or political idols.
~Aldous Huxley

“When facism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross.”
~Sinclair Lewis

“We must question the story logic of having an all-knowing all-powerful God, who creates faulty Humans, and then blames them for his own mistakes”
Gene Roddenberry

“No man ever believes that the Bible means what it says: He is always convinced that it says what he means”

George Bernard Shaw

"The Old Testament is responsible for more atheism, agnosticism, disbelief-call it what you will-than any book ever written; it has emptied more churches than all the counterattractions of cinema, motor bicycle and golf course"
A. A. Milne

"Computers are like Old Testament gods; lots of rules and no mercy"
Joseph Campbell

Jesus as a person does not exist outside the gospels. The only Jesus we have is the Jesus of faith.

Garry Wills

My earlier views at the unsoundness of the Christian scheme of salvation and the human origin of the scriptures, have become clearer and stronger with advancing years and I see no reason for thinking I shall ever change them
Abraham Lincoln

Christianity is the most perverted system that ever shone on man

Thomas Jefferson

God preordained, for his own glory and the display of His attributes of mercy and justice, a part of the human race, without any merit of their own, to eternal salvation, and another part, in just punishment of their sin, to eternal damnation
John Calvin

I want you to just let a wave of intolerance wash over you. I want you to let a wave of hatred wash over you. Yes, hate is good ... if a Christian voted for Clinton, he sinned against God. It's that simple. Our goal is a Christian nation. We have a biblical duty, we are called by God to conquer this country...

Randall Terry: former leader of Operation Rescue

In Christianity neither morality nor religion come into contact with reality at any point

Friedrich Nietzsche

Christian Fundamentalism: The doctrine that there is an absolutely powerful, infinitely knowledgeable, universe spanning entity that is deeply and personally concerned about my sex life
Andrew Lias

"Christianity is the greatest intellectual system the mind of man has ever touched".
Francis Schaeffer

"Lighthouses are more helpful than churches".
Benjamin Franklin

"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 smart".
H. L. Mencken

"All schools, all colleges, have two great functions: to confer, and to conceal, valuable knowledge. The theological knowledge which they conceal cannot justly be regarded as less valuable than that which they reveal. That is, when a man is buying a basket of strawberries it can profit him to know that the bottom half of it is rotten".
Mark Twain, 1908, notebook

"Three quarters of the American population literally believe in religious miracles. The numbers who believe in the devil, in resurrection, in God doing this and that -- it's astonishing. These numbers aren't duplicated anywhere else in the industrial world. You'd have to maybe go to mosques in Iran or do a poll among old ladies in Sicily to get numbers like this. Yet this is the American population".
Noam Chomsky

"I always distrust people who know so much about what God wants them to do to their fellows".

Susan B. Anthony

"The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus by the Supreme Being in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter."

Thomas Jefferson

“Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it, you'd have good people doing good things and evil people doing bad things, but for good people to do bad things, it takes religion.”
Steven Weinberg

“The tendency to turn human judgments into divine commands makes religion one of the most dangerous forces in the world.”
Georgia Harkness

All the ills from which America suffers can be traced to the teaching of evolution

~William Jennings Bryan

Today, the theory of evolution is an accepted fact for everyone but a fundamentalist minority, whose objections are based not on reasoning but on doctrinaire adherence to religious principles
~James D. Watson

The common dogma [of fundamentalists] is fear of modern knowledge, inability to cope with the fast change in a scientific-technological society, and the real breakdown in apparent moral order in recent years.... That is why hate is the major fuel, fear is the cement of the movement, and superstitious ignorance is the best defense against the dangerous new knowledge. ... When you bring up arguments that cast serious doubts on their cherished beliefs you are not simply making a rhetorical point, you are threatening their whole Universe and their immortality. That provokes anger and quite frequently violence. ... Unfortunately you cannot reason with them and you even risk violence in confronting them. Their numbers will decline only when society stabilizes, and adapts to modernity.
~G Gaia:

"The farther backward you can look, the farther forward you are likely to see."

~ Winston Churchill

“Whoever does not understand how he came will not understand how he will go.”

~ Jesus, in Dialog of the Savior

"The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible."
~Oscar Wilde

"The stories of evolution have the power to unite all peoples."
~ Lynn Margulis and Dorion Sagan"

"Truth has to appear only once in a single mind, for it to be impossible ever to prevent it from spreading universally and setting everything ablaze."
~ Pierre Teilhard de Chardin in Heart of Matter.

"Science wants to know the mechanism of the universe, religion the meaning. The two cannot be separated."
~ Charles Townes, physicist

"We know very little, and yet it is astonishing that we know so much, and still more astonishing that so little knowledge can give us so much power."
~ Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) English philosopher, mathematician.

"I do not like it, and I am sorry I ever had anything to do with it."
~ Erwin Schrödinger (1887-1961) Austrian physicist. Nobel Prize, 1933. Speaking of quantum mechanics

"Innocence about Science is the worst crime today."

~ Sir Charles Percy Snow (1905-80) English novelist and scientist.

"Happy is he who gets to know the reasons for things."
~ Virgil (70-19 BCE) Roman poet.

"Theory guides. Experiment decides."

An old saying in science, seen attributed to many different persons.

It is impossible to tell where revelations stop and hallucinations begin”
~ Henry Louis Mencken (1880 – 1956)

“It is not materialism that is the chief curse of the world, as pastors teach, but idealism. Men get into trouble by taking their visions and hallucinations too seriously".
~ Henry Louis Mencken (1880 – 1956)

"A hallucination is a fact, not an error; what is erroneous is a judgment based upon it."
~Bertrand Russell

"I respectfully decline the invitation to join your hallucination."

~Scott Adams

"Art will remain the most astonishing activity of mankind born out of struggle between wisdom and madness, between dream and reality in our mind."
~Magdalena Abakanowicz

"Everything I've read about early human beings indicates that art was inextricably entwined with religion."

~Catherine Jo Morgan

Forced Recantation of Galileo Galileo

I swear that I have always believed, I believe now, and with God's help in the future believe all which the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church doth hold, preach and teach... Having been admonished by this Holy Office to abandon the false opinion that the Sun was the center of the universe and immovable, and that the Earth was not the center of the same and that it moved... I have been... suspected of heresy, that is, of having held and believed that the Sun is the center of the universe and immovable, and that the earth is not the center of the same, and that is not the center of same, and that it does move... I abjure with a sincere heart and unfeigned faith, I curse and detest the said errors and heresies, and generally all and every error and sect contrary to the Holy Catholic Church
~ Galileo Galileo (1564 - 1642) Forced Recantation, June 22, 1633

What he really said and believed:

It is surely harmful to souls to make it a heresy to believe what is proved.

~ Galileo, "The Authority of the Scripture in Philosophical Controversies" (Condemned by the Inquisition)

To command the professors of astronomy to confute their own observations is to enjoin an impossibility, for it is to command them not to see what they do see, and not to understand what they do understand, and to find what they do not discover.
~ Galileo, "The Authority of the Scripture in Philosophical Controversies" (Condemned by the Inquisition)

By denying scientific principles, one may maintain any paradox

~ Galileo

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

It vexes me when they would constrain science by the authority of Scriptures, and yet do not consider themselves bound to answer reason and experiment

~ Galileo

Nothing physical which sense-experience sets before our eyes, or which necessary demonstrations prove to us, ought to be called into question (much less condemned) upon the testimony of biblical passages

~ Galileo

I think that in the discussion of natural problems we ought to begin not with the Scriptures, but with experiments and demonstrations
~ Galileo

It took the church until 1832 to remove Galileo's work from a list of books which Catholics were forbidden to read at the risk of dire punishment of their immortal souls.
~ Carl Sagan, "Pale Blue Dot" {emphasis added}

On 31 October 1992, Pope John Paul II expressed regret for how the Galileo affair was handled, and officially conceded that the Earth was not stationary, as the result of a study conducted by the Pontifical Council for Culture. In March 2008 the Vatican proposed to complete its rehabilitation of Galileo by erecting a statue of him inside the Vatican walls.
~ Wikipedia {emphasis added}

If it is just us, seems like an awful waste of space.

~ Movie "Contact"

"Science and art belong to the whole world, and before them vanish the barriers of nationality."

~ Goethe

"In the absence of organized religion, the only vehicle for redemption is art – not just the fragmentary arts of painting or music or poetry, but the kind of art that creates a whole world in itself and in that world we see ourselves reflected and see our religious life perfected."
~ Roger Scruton

'O Tiger-lily,' said Alice... 'I wish you could talk!'
'We can talk,' said the Tiger-lily: 'when there's anybody worth talking to."

~ Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There

Evolution is an inference from thousands of independent sources, the only conceptual structure that can make unified sense of all this disparate information.

~ Stephen Jay Gould

"That the universe was formed by a fortuitous concourse of atoms, I will no more believe than that the accidental jumbling of the alphabet would fall into a most ingenious treatise of philosophy."
~ Jonathan Swift

"If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark. Dark would be without meaning."

~ C.S. Lewis

No evidence is powerful enough to force acceptance of a conclusion that is emotionally distasteful. ~Theodosius Dobzhansky

'Review of Evolution, Creation and Science by F. L. Marsh', American Naturalist, 79, 1945, 75.

"It is far better to grasp the universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."
~ Carl Sagan

"The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference."
~ Charles Darwin

"If we long to believe that the stars rise and set for us, that we are the reason there is a universe, does science do us a disservice in deflating our con
~ Carl Sagan

"The belief that there are other life forms in the universe is a matter of faith. There is not a single shred of evidence for any other life forms, and in forty years of searching, none has been discovered. There is absolutely no evidentiary reason to maintain this belief."

~ Michael Crichton

(As of 2009 there have been over 400 extrasolar planets discovered so far)
~ Exosolar planets

"Our sun is one of 100 billion stars in our galaxy. Our galaxy is one of billions of galaxies populating the universe. It would be the height of presumption to think that we are the only living things in that enormous immensity."
~ Werner von Braun

"A universe with a God would look quite different from a universe without one. A physics, a biology where there is a God is bound to look different. So the most basic claims of religion are scientific. Religion is a scientific theory."
~ Richard Dawkins

"The scientific theory I like best is that the rings of Saturn are composed entirely of lost airline luggage."

~ Mark Russell

"There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that's your own self."

~ Aldous Huxley

"The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weakness, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still purely primitive, legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this... For me the Jewish religion like all other religions is an incarnation of the most childish superstition.... In general I find it painful that you claim a privileged position and try to defend it by two walls of pride, an external one as a man and an internal one as a Jew. As a man you claim, so to speak, a dispensation from causality otherwise accepted, as a Jew of monotheism. But a limited causality is no longer a causality at all, as our wonderful Spinoza recognized with all incision..."
~ Albert Einstein. In a letter to the philosopher Erik Gutkind in January, 1954 after reading Gutkind's">Gutkind's book, 'Choose Life: The Biblical Call to Revolt'. Letters of Note

"- At last gleams of light have come, & I am almost convinced (quite contrary to opinion I started with) that species are not (it is like confessing a murder) immutable. Heaven forfend me from Lamarck nonsense of a 'tendency to progression' 'adaptations from the slow willing of animals', etc. - but the conclusions I am led to are not widely different from his - though the means of change are wholly so - I think I have found out (here's the presumption!) the simple way by which species become exquisitely adapted to various ends."

~ Charles Darwin, 1844. letter to Hooker. Another 15 years would pass before "Origin" would be published
Letters Of Note: Darwin

More Quotes here: Quotes 2

Quotes 3

Note: The majority of these quotes are from secondary sources.

Table of Contents

Page title Most recent update Last edited by
Quotes 3 December 24, 2011 5:46 PM anonymous
Videos May 5, 2015 10:34 PM anonymous
Mark Twain Quotes September 18, 2010 11:13 PM anonymous
Quotes 1 February 20, 2011 9:58 AM anonymous
Quotes 2 February 20, 2011 9:59 AM anonymous
CFI Portland Newsletters January 28, 2010 8:26 PM anonymous
Famous American Quotes July 19, 2011 10:58 PM anonymous
Becoming a Member January 22, 2011 9:04 PM anonymous
How to use our Websites August 19, 2009 6:10 PM anonymous
Suggested Films September 17, 2015 6:21 PM anonymous
OMSI - Science Pub Portland Information May 31, 2009 10:46 PM anonymous
About CFI Secular Humanists of East Portland August 26, 2015 4:06 PM anonymous

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