Happiness is not achieved by the conscious pursuit of happiness; it is generally the by-product of other activities.
To his dog, every man is Napoleon; hence the constant popularity of dogs.
The charm of history and its enigmatic lesson consist in the fact that, from age to age, nothing changes and yet everything is completely different.
To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries.
Most ignorance is vincible ignorance. We don't know because we don't want to know.
Most ignorances are vincible, and in the greater number of cases stupidity is what the Buddha pronounced it to be, a sin. For, consciously, or subconsciously, it is with deliberation that we do not know or fail to understand-because incomprehension allows us, with a good conscience, to evade unpleasant obligations and responsibilities, because ignorance is the best excuse for going on doing what one likes, but ought not, to do.
The thin and precarious crust of decency is all that separates any civilization, however impressive, from the hell of anarchy or systematic tyranny which lie in wait beneath the surface .
If it were not for the intellectual snobs who pay-in solid cash -- the tribute which philistinism owes to culture, the arts would perish with their starving practitioners. Let us thank heaven for hypocrisy.
The lion will lay down with the lamb, but every morning they'll have to provide a new lamb. Maybe this world is another planet's hell.
There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving and that's your own self.
There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that is your own self. So you have to begin there, not outside, not on other people. That comes afterwards, when you have worked on your own corner.
The daily bread of grace, without which nothing can be achieved, is given to the extent to which we ourselves give and forgive.
Silence is as full of potential wisdom and wit as the unshown marble of great sculpture. The silent bear no witness against themselves.
There is no bad day that can't be overcome by listening to a barbershop quartet. This is just truth, plain and simple.
Facts are ventriloquist's dummies. Sitting on a wise man's knee they may be made to utter words of wisdom; elsewhere, they say nothing, or talk nonsense.
The victim of mind-manipulation does not know that he is a victim. To him, the walls of his prison are invisible, and he believes himself to be free.
Almost all of us long for peace and freedom; but very few of us have much enthusiasm for the thoughts, feelings, and actions that make for peace and freedom.
Every discovery in pure science is potentially subversive; even science must sometimes be treated as a possible enemy.
In all activities of life, the secret of efficiency lies in an ability to combine two seemingly incompatible states: a state of maximum activity and a state of maximum relaxation.
We tend to think and feel in terms of the art we like; and if the art we like is bad then our thinking and feeling will be bad. And if the thinking and feeling of most of the individuals composing a society is bad, is not that society in danger?
Every civilization is, among other things, an arrangement for domesticating the passions and setting them to do useful work.
Modern man no longer regards Nature as in any sense divine and feels perfectly free to behave toward her as an overweening conqueror and tyrant.
The negative propaganda of silence is probably more effective as an instrument of persuasion and mental regimentation than speech. Silence creates the condition in which such words as are spoken or written take most effect.
By making harmless chemical euphoria freely available, a dictator could reconcile an entire population to a state of affairs to which self-respecting human beings ought not to be reconciled.
The best way to find things out is not to ask questions at all. If you fire off a question, it is like firing off a gun -- bang it goes.
Our vanity makes us exaggerate the importance of human life; the individual is nothing; Nature cares only for the species.
They do not sweat and whine about their condition. They do not lie awake in the dark and weep for their sins.'' ... To be a perfect animal and a perfect human -- that was the ideal.
To see ourselves as others see us is a most salutary gift. Hardly less important is the capacity to see others as they see themselves.
Beware of being too rational. In the country of the insane, the integrated man doesn't become king. He gets lynched.
He had allowed the advertisers to multiply his wants; he had learned to equate happiness with possessions, and prosperity with money to spend in a shop.
In a sane world I should be a great man; as things are, in this curious establishment, I am nothing at all; to all intents and purposes I don't exist. I am just a Vox et preaterea nihil.
The physique of a Messiah. But too clever to believe in God or be convinced of his own mission. And too sensitive, even if he were convinced, to carry it out. His muscles would like to act and his feelings would like to believe; but his nerve-endings and his cleverness won't allow it.
Pleasure cannot be shared; like Pain, it can only be experienced or inflicted, and when we give Pleasure to our Lovers or bestow Charity upon the Needy, we do so, not to gratify the object of our Benevolence, but only ourselves. For the Truth is that we are kind for the same reason as we are cruel, in order that we may enhance the sense of our own Power..
The mystical experience is doubly valuable; it is valuable because it gives the experiencer a better understanding of himself and the world and because it may help him to lead a less self-centered and more creative life.
A majority of young people seem to develop mental arteriosclerosis forty years before they get the physical kind. Another question: why do some people remain open and elastic into extreme old age, whereas others become rigid and unproductive before they're fifty?
Believe it or not, a normal human being is one who can have an orgasm and is adjusted to his society.
They passed a bed of opium poppies, dispetaled now; the round, ripe seedheads were brown and dry -- like Polynesian trophies, Denis thought; severed heads stuck on poles.
Complete prohibition of all chemical mind changers can be decreed, but cannot be enforced, and tends to create more evils than it cures.
Perhaps it's good for one to suffer. Can an artist do anything if he's happy? Would he ever want to do anything? What is art, after all, but a protest against the horrible inclemency of life?
Some of the greatest advances in mathematics have been due to the invention of symbols, which it afterwards became necessary to explain; from the minus sign proceeded the whole theory of negative quantities.
The survival of democracy depends on the ability of large numbers of people to make realistic choices in the light of adequate information.
Oh, how desperately bored, in spite of their grim determination to have a Good Time, the majority of pleasure-seekers really are!
Did you eat something that didn't agree with you? asked Bernard. The Savage nodded I ate civilization.
A man who has trained himself in goodness come to have certain direct intuitions about character, about the relations between human beings, about his own position in the world -- intuitions that are quite different from the intuitions of the average sensual man.
A mind that has come to the stillness of wisdom shall know being, shall know what it is to love. Love is neither personal nor impersonal. Love is love, not to be defined or described by the mind as exclusive or inclusive. Love is its own eternity; it is the real, the supreme, the immeasurable.
It was all extremely symbolic; but then, if you choose to think so, nothing in this world is not symbolical. Profound and beautiful truth!
When public executions were abolished, it was not because the majority desired their abolition; it was because a small minority of exceptionally sensitive reformers possessed sufficient influence to have them banned.
People often ask me what is the most effective technique for transforming their life. It is a little embarrassing that after years and years of research and experimentation, I have to say that the best answer is -- just be a little kinder.
Love is as necessary to human beings as food and shelter; but without intelligence, ... love is impotent and freedom unattainable.
To aspire to be superhuman is a most discreditable admission that you lack the guts, the wit, the moderating judgment to be successfully and consummately human.
But the nature of the universe is such that the ends never justify the means. On the contrary, the means always determine the end.
The victim of mind-manipulation does not know that he is a victim. To him, the walls of his prison are invisible, and he believes himself to be free.
Man is so intelligent that he feels impelled to invent theories to account for what happens in the world. Unfortunately, he is not quite intelligent enough, in most cases, to find correct explanations. So that when he acts on his theories, he behaves very often like a lunatic.
Liberty, as we all know, cannot flourish in a country that is permanently on a war footing, or even a near war footing. Permanent crisis justifies permanent control of everybody and everything by the agencies of central government.
I had to depend on Braille for my reading and guide for my walking...I am now wearing no glasses, reading and all without strain...by taking lessons in seeing...optometrists hate the method.
Today I feel no wish to demonstrate that sanity is impossible. On the contrary, though I remain no less sadly certain than in the past that sanity is a rather rare phenomenon, I am convinced that it can be achieved and would like to see more of it.
But wouldn't you like to be free to be happy in some other way, Lenina? In your own way, for example; not in everybody else's way.
Wordless conditioning is crude and wholesale; cannot inculcate the more complex courses of behaviour. For that there must be words, but words without reason. In brief, hypnopaedia.
Societies are composed of individuals and are good only insofar as they help individuals to realize their potentialities and to lead a happy and creative life.
Ours is an age of systematized irrelevances, and the imbecile within us has become one of the Titans, upon whose shoulders rests the weight of the social and economic system.
Civilization means food and literature all round. Beefsteaks and fiction magazines for all. First-class proteins for the body, fourth-class love-stories for the spirit.
Generalized intelligence and mental alertness are the most powerful enemies of dictatorship and at the same time the basic conditions of effective democracy.
The horror no less than the charm of real life consists precisely in the recurrent actualization of the inconceivable.
The present moment is the only aperture through which the soul can pass out of time into eternity, through which grace can pass out of eternity into the soul, and through which love can pass from one soul in time to another soul in time.
It had the taste of an apple peeled with a steel knife. (Sebastian Barnack assessing a Roederer 1916 champagne in Time Must Have a Stop).
People believe in God because they've been conditioned to believe in God.
People believe in God because they've been conditioned to believe in God." (p.207).
Impulse arrested spills over, and the flood is feeling, the flood is passion, the flood is even madness.
Impulse arrested spills over, and the flood is feeling, the flood is passion, the flood is even madness: it depends on the force of the current, the height and strength of the barrier. The unchecked stream flows smoothly down its appointed channels into a calm well being.
The optimum population is modeled on the iceberg- eight-ninths below the water line, one-ninth above.
It isn't only art that is incompatible with happiness, it's also science. Science is dangerous, we have to keep it most carefully chained and muzzled.
We are not our own any more than what we possess is our own. We did not make ourselves, we cannot be supreme over ourselves. We are not our own masters.
For some strange reason murder has always seemed more respectable than fornication. Few people are shocked when they hear God described as the God of Battles; but what an outcry there would be if anyone spoke of him as the God of Brothels.
Indifference to all the refinements of life -- it's really shocking. Just Calvinism, that's all. Calvinism without the excuse of Calvin's theology.
Drinking can not be sacramentalised except in religions which set no store on decorum. The worship of Dionysos or the Celtic god of beer was a loud and disorderly affair.
Art and religion, carnivals and saturnalia, dancing and listening to oratory -- all these have served, in H. G. Wells's phrase, as Doors in the Wall.
For D.H. Lawrence, existence was one continuous convalescence; it was as though he were newly reborn from a mortal illness every day of his life. What these convalescent eyes saw, his most casual speech would reveal.
All our science is just a cookery book, with an orthodox theory of cooking that nobody's allowed to question, and a list of recipes that mustn't be added to except by special permission from the head cook.
Deprived of their newspapers or a novel, reading-addicts will fall back onto cookery books, on the literature which is wrapped around bottles of patent medicine, on those instructions for keeping the contents crisp which are printed on the outside of boxes of breakfast cereals. On anything.
Why should human females become sterile in their forties, while female crocodiles continue to lay eggs into their third century?
A poor degenerate from the ape, Whose hands are four, whose tail's a limb, I contemplate my flaccid shape And know I may not rival him Save with my mind.
We live together, we act on, and react to one another; but always, and in all circumstances, we are by ourselves.
Love casts out fear; but conversely fear casts out love. And not only love. Fear also casts out intelligence, casts out goodness, casts out all thought of beauty and truth.
Successfully (whatever that may mean) or unsuccessfully, we all overact the part of our favorite character in fiction.
Chaos and ineptitude are anti-human; but so too is a superlatively efficient government, equipped with all the products of a highly developed technology.
We lie to ourselves in order that we may still have the excuse of ignorance, the alibi of stupidity and incomprehension, possessing which we can continue with a good conscience to commit and tolerate the most monstrous crimes.
If Men and Women took their Pleasures as noisily as the Cats, what Londoner could ever hope to sleep of nights?
Suppose it were perfectly certain that the life and fortune of each of us would some day depend upon our winning or losing a game of chess. Do you not think that we should all consider it to be our primary duty to learn at least the names of the pieces and how to position them on the chessboard?
For what we think and feel and are is to a great extent determined by the state of our ductless glands and our viscera.
Hitler's vast propaganda successes were accomplished with little more than the radio and loudspeaker, and without TV and tape and video recording ... Today the art of mind control is in the process of becoming a science.
Man has an almost infinite capacity for taking things and people for granted and thereby missing out on the pleasure of being grateful that things aren't worse and of praising and thereby lifting the spirits of others.
Applied Science is a conjuror, whose bottomless hat yields impartially the softest of Angora rabbits and the most petrifying of Medusas.
Drill and uniforms impose an architecture on the crowd. An army's beautiful. But that's not all; it panders to lower instincts than the aesthetic. The spectacle of human beings reduced to automatism satisfies the lust for power. Looking at mechanized slaves, one fancies oneself a master.
It is only when it takes the form of physical addiction that sex is evil. It is also evil when it manifests itself as a way of satisfying the lust for power or the climber's craving for position and social distinction.
Abused as we abuse it at present, dramatic art is in no sense cathartic; it is merely a form of emotional masturbation.
Abused as we abuse it at present, dramatic art is in no sense cathartic; it is merely a form of emotional masturbation. It is the rarest thing to find a player who has not had his character affected for the worse by the practice of his profession. Nobody can make a habit of self-exhibition, nobody can exploit his personality for the sake of exercising a kind of hypnotic power over others, and remain untouched by the process.
And that ... is the secret of happiness and virtue --liking what you've got to do. All conditioning aims at that: making people like their unescapable social destiny.
It is natural to believe in God when you're alone -- quite alone, in the night, thinking about death.
To be enlightened is to be aware, always, of total reality in its immanent otherness -- to be aware of it and yet remain in a condition to survive as an animal. Our goal is to discover that we have always been where we ought to be. Unhappily we make the task exceedingly difficult for ourselves.
The investigation of nature is an infinite pasture-ground where all may graze, and where the more bite, the longer the grass grows, the sweeter is its flavor, and the more it nourishes.
Armaments, universal debt and planned obsolescence -- those are the three pillars of Western prosperity.
It's an absurdity. An Alpha-decanted, Alpha-conditioned man would go mad if he had to do Epsilon Semi-moron work -- go mad, or start smashing things up.
No Romeo-and-Juliet acts, no nonsense about Love with a large L, none of that popular song claptrap with its skies of blue, dreams come true, heaven with you. Just sensuality for its own sake.
The third petition of the Lord's Prayer is repeated daily by millions who have not the slightest intention of letting anyone's will be done but their own.
Science is not enough, religion is not enough, art is not enough, politics and economics are not enough, nor is love, nor is duty, nor is action however disinterested, nor, however sublime, is contemplation. Nothing short of everything, will really do.
The most intractable of our experiences is the experience of Time-the intuition of duration, combined with the thought of perpetual perishing.
If the Prince of Peace should come to earth, one of the first things he would do would be to put psychiatrists in their place.
It is in the social sphere, in the realm of politics and economics, that the Will to Order becomes really dangerous.
Single-mindedness is all very well in cows or baboons; in an animal claiming to belong to the same species as Shakespeare, it is simply disgraceful.
Grace is always sufficient, provided we are ready to cooperate with it. If we fail to do our share, but rather choose to rely on self-will and self-direction, we shall not only get no help from the graces bestowed on us, we shall actually make it impossible for further graces to be given.
That's what you men are always doing; it's so barbarously naive. You feel one of your loose desires for some woman, and because you desire her strongly you immediately accuse her of luring you on, of deliberately provoking and inviting the desire.
The leech's kiss, the squid's embrace, The prurient ape's defiling touch: And do you like the human race? No, not much.
Nonsense is an assertion of man's spiritual freedom in spite of all the oppressions of circumstance.
Bottle of mine, it's you I've always wanted!
Bottle of mine, why was I ever decanted?
Skies are blue inside of you,
The weather's always fine;
There ain't no Bottle in all the world
Like that dear little Bottle of mine.
Ignore death up to the last moment; then, when it can't be ignored any longer, have yourself squirted full of morphia and shuffle off in a coma. Thoroughly sensible, humane and scientific, eh?
For 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.
Man is an amphibian who lives simultaneously in two worlds-the given and the home-made, the world of matter, life and consciousness and the world of symbols.
I was born wandering between two worlds, one dead, the other powerless to be born, and have made, in a curious way, the worst of both.
All democracies are based on the proposition that power is very dangerous and that it is extremely important not to let any one person or small group have too much power for too long a time.
Now, a corpse, poor thing, is an untouchable and the process of decay is, of all pieces of bad manners, the vulgarest imaginable. For a corpse is, by definition, a person absolutely devoid of savoir vivre.
Ultimate Reality is not clearly and immediately apprehended except by those who have made themselves loving, pure in heart and poor in spirit.
All war propaganda consists, in the last resort, in substituting diabolical abstractions for human beings. Similarly, those who defend war have invented a pleasant sounding vocabulary of abstractions in which to describe the process of mass murder.
But a priest's life is not supposed to be well-rounded; it is supposed to be one-pointed -- a compass, not a weathercock.
He continued, slowly, by a process of osmosis and white knowledge (which is like white noise, only more useful), to comprehend the city, a process that accelerated when he realized that the actual City of London itself was no bigger than a square mile.
Universal happiness keeps the wheels steadily turning, truth and beauty can't.
Universal happiness keeps the wheels steadily turning; truth and beauty can't. And, of course, whenever the masses seized political power, then it was happiness rather than truth and beauty that mattered.
I will have no Parsons around me but such as drink deep, ride to Hounds and caress the Wives and Daughters of their Parishioners.A Virtuous Parson does nothing to test or exercise the Faith of his Flock.
One right-thinking man thinks like all other right-thinking men of his time that is to say, in most cases, like some wrong-thinking man of another time.
Only one more indispensable massacre of Capitalists or Communists or Fascists or Christians or Heretics, and there we are in the Golden Future.