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John Cowper Powys

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No refining of one's taste in matters of art or literature, no sharpening of one's powers of insight in matters of science or psychology, can ever take the place of one's sensitiveness to the life of the earth. This is the beginning and the end of a person's true education.
p. 175

John Cowper Powys

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Cleanliness and order are not matters of instinct; they are matters of education, and like most great things, you must cultivate a taste for them.

Benjamin Disraeli

We have tested, in matters where ordinary intelligence and knowledge are competent to judge, the logical methods and intellectual honesty of the foremost of those who in the name of science eliminate God and degrade man, taking from human life its highest dignity and deepest hope. Now, if in simple matters we find such confusion, such credulity, such violation of every canon of sound reasoning as we have found here, shall we blindly trust in deeper matters in those matters which always have and always must perplex the intellect of man?
Let us rather, as I said in the beginning, not too much underrate our own powers in what is concerned with common facts and general relations. While we may not be scientists or philosophers we too are men. And as to things which the telescope cannot resolve, nor the microscope reveal, nor the spectrum analysis throw light on, nor the tests of the chemist discover, it is as irrational to accept blindly the dictum of those who say, "Thus saith science!" as it is in things that are the proper field of the natural sciences to bow before the dictum of those who say, "Thus saith religion!"

Henry George

Books should confuse. Literature abhors the typical. Literature flows to the particular, the mundane, the greasiness of paper, the taste of warm beer, the smell of onion or quince. Auden has a line: "Ports have names they call the sea." Just so will literature describe life familiarly, regionally, in terms life is accustomed to use high or low matters not. Literature cannot by this impulse betray the grandeur of its subject there is only one subject: What it feels like to be alive. Nothing is irrelevant. Nothing is typical.

Richard Rodriguez

Matters of religion should never be matters of controversy. We neither argue with a lover about his taste, nor condemn him, if we are just, for knowing so human a passion.

George Santayana

Even the nonreligious may exercise aesthetic judgment in matters of religion, and indeed our age has given the unbelieving a sophisticated taste in religious literature.

Lionel Trilling
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