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Alfred North Whitehead's Quotes

Alfred North Whitehead profile photo

Born: 1970-01-01
Profession: Mathematician
Nation: English
Biography of Alfred North Whitehead

See the gallery for quotes by Alfred North Whitehead. You can to use those 8 images of quotes as a desktop wallpapers.
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Speak out in acts; the time for words has passed, and only deeds will suffice.

Tags: Speak, Time, Words

Art flourishes where there is a sense of adventure.

Tags: Adventure, Art, Sense

Civilizations can only be understood by those who are civilized.

Tags: Civilized, Understood

Every philosophy is tinged with the coloring of some secret imaginative background, which never emerges explicitly into its train of reasoning.

Tags: Philosophy, Secret, Train

Fools act on imagination without knowledge, pedants act on knowledge without imagination.

Tags: Act, Fools, Knowledge

Fundamental progress has to do with the reinterpretation of basic ideas.

Tags: Basic, Ideas, Progress

Human life is driven forward by its dim apprehension of notions too general for its existing language.

Tags: Forward, Human, Life

I have always noticed that deeply and truly religious persons are fond of a joke, and I am suspicious of those who aren't.

Tags: Joke, Religious, Truly

Ideas won't keep; something must be done about them.

Tags: Done, Ideas, Keep

Intelligence is quickness to apprehend as distinct form ability, which is capacity to act wisely on the thing apprehended.

Tags: Ability, Act, Capacity

It is the business of the future to be dangerous; and it is among the merits of science that it equips the future for its duties.

Tags: Business, Future, Science

It requires a very unusual mind to undertake the analysis of the obvious.

Tags: Analysis, Mind, Obvious

It takes an extraordinary intelligence to contemplate the obvious.

Tags: Obvious, Takes

Life is an offensive, directed against the repetitious mechanism of the Universe.

Tags: Against, Life, Universe

Man can acquire accomplishments or he can become an animal, whichever he wants. God makes the animals, man makes himself.

Tags: Become, God, Makes

Periods of tranquility are seldom prolific of creative achievement. Mankind has to be stirred up.

Tags: Creative, Mankind, Seldom

Philosophy is the product of wonder.

Tags: Philosophy, Product, Wonder

Simple solutions seldom are. It takes a very unusual mind to undertake analysis of the obvious.

Tags: Mind, Simple, Takes

Speech is human nature itself, with none of the artificiality of written language.

Tags: Human, Language, Nature

The absolute pacifist is a bad citizen; times come when force must be used to uphold right, justice and ideals.

Tags: Bad, Justice, Used

The art of progress is to preserve order amid change and to preserve change amid order.

Tags: Art, Change, Progress

The deepest definition of youth is life as yet untouched by tragedy.

Tags: Life, Tragedy, Youth

The silly question is the first intimation of some totally new development.

Tags: Question, Silly, Totally

The task of a university is the creation of the future, so far as rational thought and civilized modes of appreciation can affect the issue.

Tags: Far, Future, Thought

The total absence of humor from the Bible is one of the most singular things in all literature.

Tags: Bible, Humor, Literature

We think in generalities, but we live in detail.

Tags: Detail
Much more quotes by Alfred North Whitehead below the page.

What is morality in any given time or place? It is what the majority then and there happen to like and immorality is what they dislike.

Tags: Happen, Place, Time

Without adventure civilization is in full decay.

Tags: Adventure, Decay, Full

But you can catch yourself entertaining habitually certain ideas and setting others aside; and that, I think, is where our personal destinies are largely decided.

Tags: Others, Personal, Yourself

I have suffered a great deal from writers who have quoted this or that sentence of mine either out of its context or in juxtaposition to some incongruous matter which quite distorted my meaning, or destroyed it altogether.

Tags: Great, Matter, Meaning

The vitality of thought is in adventure. Ideas won't keep. Something must be done about them. When the idea is new, its custodians have fervor, live for it, and if need be, die for it.

Tags: Die, Done, Thought

Wisdom alone is true ambition's aim, wisdom is the source of virtue and of fame; obtained with labour, for mankind employed, and then, when most you share it, best enjoyed.

Tags: Alone, Best, Wisdom

No one who achieves success does so without acknowledging the help of others. The wise and confident acknowledge this help with gratitude.

Tags: Gratitude, Success, Wise

Civilization advances by extending the number of important operations which we can perform without thinking of them.

Tags: Number, Technology, Thinking

Philosophy begins in wonder. And, at the end, when philosophic thought has done its best, the wonder remains.

Tags: Best, Done, End

True courage is not the brutal force of vulgar heroes, but the firm resolve of virtue and reason.

Tags: Courage, Reason, True

If a dog jumps into your lap, it is because he is fond of you; but if a cat does the same thing, it is because your lap is warmer.

Tags: Cat, Dog, Pet

In formal logic, a contradiction is the signal of defeat, but in the evolution of real knowledge it marks the first step in progress toward a victory.

Tags: Knowledge, Real, Victory

No period of history has ever been great or ever can be that does not act on some sort of high, idealistic motives, and idealism in our time has been shoved aside, and we are paying the penalty for it.

Tags: Great, History, Time

Not ignorance, but ignorance of ignorance, is the death of knowledge.

Tags: Death, Ignorance, Knowledge

Seek simplicity but distrust it.

Tags: Distrust, Seek, Simplicity

There are no whole truths: all truths are half-truths. It is trying to treat them as whole truths that plays to the devil.

Tags: Treat, Trying, Whole

When you're average, you're just as close to the bottom as you are the top.

Tags: Average, Close, Top

Religion is the last refuge of human savagery.

Tags: Human, Last, Religion

The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato.

Tags: General, Series, Tradition

The guiding motto in the life of every natural philosopher should be, seek simplicity and distrust it.

Tags: Life, Motto, Natural

Familiar things happen, and mankind does not bother about them. It requires a very unusual mind to undertake the analysis of the obvious.

Tags: Happen, Mankind, Mind

Everything of importance has been said before by somebody who did not discover it.

Tags: Importance, Said, Somebody

Our minds are finite, and yet even in these circumstances of finitude we are surrounded by possibilities that are infinite, and the purpose of life is to grasp as much as we can out of that infinitude.

Tags: Life, Minds, Purpose

Art is the imposing of a pattern on experience, and our aesthetic enjoyment is recognition of the pattern.

Tags: Art, Enjoyment, Experience

It is in literature that the concrete outlook of humanity receives its expression.

Tags: Expression, Humanity, Literature

Knowledge shrinks as wisdom grows.

Tags: Grows, Knowledge, Wisdom

Almost all new ideas have a certain aspect of foolishness when they are first produced.

Tags: Almost, Aspect, Ideas

An enormous part of our mature experience cannot not be expressed in words.

Tags: Cannot, Experience, Words

Common sense is genius in homespun.

Tags: Common, Genius, Sense

I would be a billionaire if I was looking to be a selfish boss. That's not me.

Tags: Boss, Looking, Selfish

'Sag Harbor' was a very different book for me. It changed the way I thought about books that I wanted to do.

Tags: Book, Thought, Wanted

I was inspired to become a writer by horror movies and science fiction.

Tags: Become, Movies, Science

I'm just trying to keep things rich for me creatively and for the readers who follow me.

Tags: Keep, Rich, Trying

What isn't said is as important as what is said.

Tags: Said

Write what you know.

Tags: Write

You can't rush inspiration.

Tags: Rush

A lot of my writer friends live near me, and that makes people think we just hang around with one another in cafes, trading work and discussing 'Harper's' and what not. But I rarely see them. We're home working.

Tags: Friends, Home, Work

Early on my career, I figured out that I just have to write the book I have to write at that moment. Whatever else is going on in the culture is just not that important. If you could get the culture to write your book, that would be great. But the culture can't write your book.

Tags: Book, Career, Great

Growing up devouring horror comics and novels, and being inspired to become a writer because of horror novels, movies, and comic books, I always knew I was going to write a horror novel.

Tags: Become, Movies, Write

I get invited to do panels with other Brooklyn writers to discuss what it's like to be a writer in Brooklyn. I expect it's like writing in Manhattan, but there aren't as many tourists walking very slowly in front of you when you step out for coffee. It's like writing in Paris, but there are fewer people speaking French.

Tags: Coffee, Step, Writing

I grew up reading the 'Village Voice' and wanting to be one of these multidisciplinary music writers, film writers, book writers. And I lucked out getting a job at the 'Voice' right after college.

Tags: Book, Job, Music

I live in Brooklyn. I moved here 14 years ago for the cheap rent. It was a little embarrassing because I was raised in Manhattan, and so I was a bit of a snob about the other boroughs.

Tags: Bit, Cheap, Here