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William J. Brennan

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Sex, a great and mysterious motive force in human life, has indisputably been a subject of absorbing interest to mankind through the ages.
--
Writing for the court, Roth v. United States, 354 U.S. 476 (1957)

 
William J. Brennan

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Intellect is to the people and the people's Force, what the slender needle of the compass is to the ship its soul, always counselling the huge mass of wood and iron, and always pointing to the north. To attack the citadels built up on all sides against the human race by superstitions, despotisms, and prejudices, the Force must have a brain and a law. Then its deeds of daring produce permanent results, and there is real progress. Then there are sublime conquests. Thought is a force, and philosophy should be an energy, finding its aim and its effects in the amelioration of mankind. The two great motors are Truth and Love. When all these Forces are combined, and guided by the Intellect, and regulated by the Rule of Right, and Justice, and of combined and systematic movement and effort, the great revolution prepared for by the ages will begin to march. The Power of the Deity Himself is in equilibrium with His Wisdom. Hence only results HARMONY.

 
Albert Pike
 

I argue that it's appropriate for people to pursue their profit motive in business. If you want to change that, you're going against human nature. But when it comes to setting the rules or creating the institutions, then you should have the general interest at heart, even if it conflicts with your personal interest.

 
George Soros
 

Without encroaching upon grounds appertaining to the theologian and the philosopher, the domain of natural sciences is surely broad enough to satisfy the wildest ambition of its devotees. In other departments of human life and interest, true progress is rather an article of faith than a rational belief; but in science a retrograde movements is, from the nature of the case, almost impossible. Increasing knowledge brings with it increasing power, and great as are the triumphs of the present century, we may well believe that they are but a foretaste of what discovery and invention have yet in store for mankind. ... The work may be hard, and the discipline severe; but the interest never fails, and great is the privilege of achievement.

 
John Strutt
 

The great ideals of the past failed not by being outlived (which must mean over-lived), but by not being lived enough. Mankind has not passed through the Middle Ages. Rather mankind has retreated from the Middle Ages in reaction and rout. The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.

 
Gilbert Keith Chesterton
 

The overdevelopment of the maternal instinct is identical with that well-known image of the mother which has been glorified in all ages and all tongues. This is the motherlove which is one of the most moving and unforgettable memories of our lives, the mysterious root of all growth and change; the love that means homecoming, shelter, and the long silence from which everything begins and in which everything ends. Intimately known and yet strange like Nature, lovingly tender and yet cruel like fate, 'oyous and untiring giver of life-mater dolorosa and mute implacable portal that closes upon the dead. Mother is motherlove, my experience and my secret. Why risk saying too much, too much that is false and inadequate and beside the point, about that human being who was our mother, the accidental carrier of that great experience which includes herself and myself and all mankind, and indeed the whole of created nature, the experience of life whose children we are? The attempt to say these things has always been made, and probably always will be; but a sensitive person cannot in all fairness load that enormous burden of meaning, responsibility, duty, heaven and hell, on to the shoulders of one frail and fallible human being-so deserving of love, indulgence, understanding, and forgiveness-who was our mother. He knows that the mother carries for us that inborn image of the mater nature and mater spiritualis, of the totality of life of which we are a small and helpless part.

 
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