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George Santayana

1863-1952 ,  Spanish-American philosopher
George SantayanaJorge Agustín Nicolás Ruiz de Santayana y Borrás, known in English as George Santayana, was a philosopher, essayist, poet, and novelist. Originally from Spain, he was raised and educated in the United States from the age of eight and identified himself as an American.
He wrote in English and is generally considered an American man of letters. At the age of 48, Santayana left his position at Harvard and returned to Europe permanently, never to return to the United States.

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Fanaticism consists in redoubling your efforts when you have forgotten your aim.

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.

To call war the soil of courage and virtue is like calling debauchery the soil of love.

Beauty as we feel it is something indescribable: what it is or what it means can never be said.

The highest form of vanity is love of fame.

When men and women agree, it is only in their conclusions; their reasons are always different.

Fashion is something barbarous, for it produces innovation without reason and imitation without benefit.

Art like life should be free, since both are experimental.

The Bible is literature, not dogma.

Eternal vigilance is the price of knowledge.

England is the paradise of individuality, eccentricity, heresy, anomalies, hobbies, and humors.

There is no cure for birth and death save to enjoy the interval.

Only the dead have seen the end of war.

My atheism, like that of Spinoza, is true piety towards the universe and denies only gods fashioned by men in their own image, to be servants of their human interests.

The idea of Christ is much older than Christianity.

Religions are not true or false, but better or worse.

The earth has music for those who listen.

A child educated only at school is an uneducated child.

To be happy you must have taken the measure of your powers, tasted the fruits of your passion, and learned your place in the world.

Memory... is an internal rumor.

Never build your emotional life on the weaknesses of others.

A man's feet must be planted in his country, but his eyes should survey the world.

Almost every wise saying has an opposite one, no less wise, to balance it.

The Difficult is that which can be done immediately; the Impossible that which takes a little longer.

The wisest mind has something yet to learn.

Wisdom lies in taking everything with good humor and a grain of salt.

Habit is stronger than reason.

To be interested in the changing seasons is a happier state of mind than to be hopelessly in love with spring.

If artists and poets are unhappy, it is after all because happiness does not interest them.


Similar sources

 Eric Hoffer

 William James

 Ayn Rand

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