It is possible, sometimes, to love one's child like oneself, but to
love one's neighbour like oneself takes a saintliness that is beyond
the humanity of the vast majority.
Society is as succesful in
helping people on a large scale, as it is succesful in killing,
exploiting and repressing people on a large scale.
The easiest way to become unhappy is to try to become
someone in the eyes of the multitude.
The greatest source of joy for
many is the evil that others suffer.
Real philosophers are as rare as true love; false philosophers are as
common as streetwalkers.
Most men are little better than thinking apes.
Human civilisation is mostly
the result of the thinking and acting of a small minority of rational
or courageous men.
There is an unfortunate tendency, especially among those who know
little of science or mathematics, to attribute to Bacon Lord Verulam
things he very probably or certainly did not do, such as writing the
works of Shakespeare or laying the foundations of modern science. To
speak only of science: It was Galileo Galilei who first clearly
saw and said that the book of nature is written in mathematics and
discoverable by experiment - and it may be added, in fairness, that
this great mathematician and physicist wrote as well as, and more
clearly than, Lord Bacon did in his Essays.
Since anything that may be used, may be abused, reason may be
abused too, just as one may unwittingly saw off the branch on which one
Youth without passions and illusions is an oxymoron.
There is no passion without
some illusion, and vice versa.
It has been well-said that the art of medicine mostly consists in
keeping the patient amused, while nature effects the cure.
What few realize
who are impressed by modern medical science and modern medical doctors,
is that the medical doctors of the past were as pretentious as the
modern doctors, and that the modern doctors are more effective than
their predecessors because they stand on the shoulders of great
scientists - who usually were not medical doctors.
I have seen many
medical doctors in my life, and the vast majority of them behaved more
like shamans or cheats than like scientists - and indeed, a modern
medical education is not so much a scientific education as it is a
practical course to learn to prescribe pills, make diagnosis, and refer
to colleagues in a somewhat rational manner, and profit by that.
Fortunes and careers tend to be made by the same means as wars are won:
By deception, by fraud, by force - and not at all by honesty, fairness
To become a nouveaux riche,
one generally requires genius or fraudulence. Few fortunes have been
made by honest means; most fortunes are made by fraud, force, theft or
There are more social than natural ills, because man has had little
time to evolve, and is the only kind of animal that is consciously and
There are very many natural
ills, but they differ from the harm man does in being neither
premeditated nor done for monetary profit or out of religious or