Nerd alert!

This is a list that used to be behind the quote widget on the upper right of the page. They are from various places, maybe half from my personal reading (books). I’m not documenting sources because I don’t have time or did not record them.
There’s good nourishment here! But you may have to chew for at least 5 or 6 seconds to get it. Eat and enjoy!

[Here’s another list of short quotes – about 50 of them.]


A miracle, just take a look around: the inescapable earth.    -Wistawa Szymborska

A liberal state is an achievement that has a long history — a history that allowed the West to transcend the murderous grip of warring Christian factions.    -Shadia Drury

After every war someone has to tidy up. Things won’t pick themselves up, after all …. No sound bites, no photo opportunities, and it takes years.    -Wistawa Szymborska

An eye for an eye and we all go blind.    -Gandhi

An intelligent, careful, intensive but straightforward reading [of the Bible] – that is, one not governed by obscure and faddish theories or by a mindless orthodoxy – is what it requires to direct us into life in God’s kingdom.    -Dallas Willard

As I write, highly civilized human beings are flying overhead trying to kill me. They do not feel any enmity against me as an individual, nor I against them. They are only doing their duty … if one of them succeeds in blowing me to pieces with a well-placed bomb, he will never sleep any worse for it. He is serving his country, which has the power to absolve him from evil.    -George Orwell, London 1941

As a lawyer, I was an advocate of my clients. If I was to be confirmed, I would be an advocate for the law.    -Bush judicial nominee Wm Myers

Bush’s mixed-up budget priorities really show the gap between his professed moral values and his actions    -True Majority

Christianity is like a swimming pool; the most noise comes from the shallow end.    -Unknown

Compassion does not come from religious texts.    -the Dalai Lama


Conservative: a statesman who is enamoured of existing evils, as distinguished from the Liberal, who wishes to replace them with others.    -Ambrose Bierce

Democracies are most commonly corrupted by the insolence of demagogues.    -Aristotle

Each single step on the way to the realization of a worthy objective must be a worthy objective in itself. Means have a way of inserting and integrating themselves into ends and of determining their ultimate pattern.    -Gandhi

Each believer is a witness, and the non-believer begins by belief in the [believer]’s belief.    -H Blackham (on Gabriel Marcel)

Every violation of truth is not only a sort of suicide in the liar, but is a stab at the health of human society.    -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Everyday activity can be destructive if motivations are not sincere and compassionate.    -the Dalai Lama

Evil is not just personal, but structural and spiritual. -Walter Wink

Famine is a political event. It is not caused by drought, flood, or other natural disaster alone.    -James K Galbraith

God at one and the same time UPHOLDS a given political or economic system, since some such system is required to support human life; CONDEMS that system insofar as it is destructive of fully human life; and PRESSES FOR ITS TRANSFORMATION into a more humane order.    -Walter Wink

God and a soldier all people adore In time of war, but not before; And when war is over and all things are righted, God is neglected and an old soldier slighted.    -Anonymous


God has high standards. Divinity will not put up forever with exploitation, corruption, and mediocrity.    -Walter Wink

Governments need what they cannot themselves provide: meaning and motivation.    -Huston Smith

He went about doing good.    -Peter, about Jesus

Help us to find ways other than war to stop those who hurt others in the world.    -Jewish Peace Fellowship.com

Help us to remember that war is not a sporting event or a video game.    -Jewish Peace Fellowship.com

How many times have I had someone ask me what I have to live for, as an atheist. Or how I can be moral … I live because I enjoy life. And I can be moral–and sometimes perhaps more moral–because I define morality primarily in terms of my relations to other human beings and my care for them rather than first in relation to an abstract being with sometimes conflicting “moral” commands.    -Black Maned Pensator (dkos)

How did the faith of Jesus come to be known as pro-rich, pro-war, and pro-American?    -Jim Wallis

I cannot really be open to the call of God in a situation of oppression if the one thing I have excluded as an option is my own suffering and death.    -Walter Wink

I cannot believe that the inscrutable universe turns on an axis of suffering; surely the strange beauty of the world must somewhere rest on pure joy.    -Louise Bogan

I was provided with additional input that was radically different from the truth. I assisted in furthering that version.    -Colonel Oliver North


I will make a bargain with the Republicans. If they will stop telling lies about Democrats, we will stop telling the truth about them.    -Adlai Stevenson

I can train a monkey to wave an American flag. That does not make the monkey patriotic.    -Scott Ritter

I don’t want to hear any lectures about Christian values from the Republican Party — they are the Pharisees and the Sadducees.    -Howard Dean

I have always felt that if you’re lucky enough in this life to accumulate enough funds to live better than you have any right to, then you have a moral obligation to pay back to the community, or to the country or to the place that brought you up.    -Johnny Carson

I have seen men march to the wars, And then I have watched their homeward tread, And they brought back bodies of living men, But their eyes were cold and dead.    -Edmund Vance Cooke

If you stop to think about it you become aware that war is just human sacrifice. There is no honor in killing as many as you can as quickly as you can.    -Sgt Kevin Benderman

If your religion does not work at home, don’t export it.    -Howard Hendricks

If there are no real gaps and wounds, if the world can be shown to be rational and coherent, there is no need of salvation but only of wisdom.    -H Blackham (on Gabriel Marcel)

In America anyone can become President. That’s just one of the risks you take.    -Adlai Stevenson

In the long run one can’t satisfactorily say no to war, violence, and injustice unless one is simultaneously saying yes to life, love, and laughter.    -David Dellinger


Is there not some chosen curse, some hidden thunder in the stores of heaven, red with uncommon wrath, to blast the man who owes his greatness to his country’s ruin?    -Joseph Addison

Isn’t it ironic that the words “liberal,” “homosexual” and “atheist” all seem to have the same power to shock and offend? The latter two were formerly burned at the stake, but the word “liberal” — as in “liberal education” — used to connote intelligence and generosity.    -John Slade

It is bad for the mind to continually be part of unanimity.    -Gotthold Ephraim Lessing

Jesus …. was a champion of women’s rights, a threat to the established political order, and a radical spiritual activist who worked outside religious institutions … owned nothing and was a passionate advocate for the poor and underprivileged … a master of love and he devoted his life to serving the Divine Intelligence. I want to be like him when I grow up!    -Bob Brezsny

Let me tell you something important. As long as my country is under occupation, I feel that my vote means nothing.    -Walid Muhammad, Imam of a major mosque in Iraq

Liberalism is trust of the people, tempered by prudence; conservatism, distrust of the people, tempered by fear.    -William Gladstone

Liberalism will not die. It is as indispensable to life as the pure air all around about. It is deathless … This is my faith in America.    -Sen. George Norris, McCook, NE, 1944

Men are not flattered by being informed that there has been a difference of purpose between the Almighty and them.    -Abraham Lincoln

Neutrality in a situation of oppression merely supports the status quo.    -Walter Wink

Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.    -Martin Luther King Jr


One does not deal well with God by force.    -Theresa of Avila

Paramount among the responsibilities of a free press is the duty to prevent any part of the government from deceiving the people.    -Justice Hugo L. Black

Propaganda replaces moral philosophy.    -Hans J Morgenthau

Real soldiers are dying in their Hummers, so that Republicans can play soldier in theirs.    -coldeye on dkos

Should Americans have to give up the Bill of Rights in order to be “safe” from terrorists? Actually, it doesn’t matter what Americans think. The trade has already been made–and without any input from the people.    -Paul Craig Roberts

Since our hate is usually a direct response to an evil done to us, our hate almost invariably causes us to respond in the terms laid down by the enemy.    -Walter Wink

So many of our dreams at first seem impossible, then they seem improbable, and then when we summon the will, they soon become inevitable.    -Christopher Reeve

Speaking the truth in times of universal deceit is a revolutionary act.    -George Orwell

Stalin killed more communists than the bourgeoisie of the whole world put together.    -an anonymous Yugoslav

Strength and wisdom are not opposing values.    -Bill Clinton


The Biblical understanding is that no institution exists as an end in itself, but only to serve the common good.    -Walter Wink

The modern conservative is engaged in one of man’s oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.    -John Kenneth Galbraith

The Scriptures are not the Fountain, but a declaration of the Fountain. And it is into that Fountain itself that we would step.    -Thomas Kelly

The worthful aspects of reality – its values, meaning, and purpose – slip through the devices of science in the way that the sea slips through the nets of fishermen.    -Huston Smith

The bottom line is that we are willing to spend much more to kill people than to save people    -Lucinda Marshall

The sound of you typing on your keyboard is the sound of 21st Century Democracy in action!    -Michael Sullivan, Kerry-Edwards Forums

The great reversal is not only the Lord’s unseating of the mighty and raising the humble; it is also our own repentance.    -John Howard Yoder

The biblical mandate …. must not only explain that it is our duty to respect the powers that be, but also provide leverage for formulating the limits of that respect, and for articulating our resistance when those limits are overrun.    -John Howard Yoder

The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground.    -Thomas Jefferson

The high road may be harder, but it leads to a better place.    -John Kerry


The “democracy” that America is exporting is in fact a Homeland Security State with more surveillance powers than Saddam Hussein.    -Paul Craig Roberts

The man of great wealth owes a peculiar obligation to the State, because he derives special advantages from the mere existence of government.    -Teddy Roosevelt

The best general is the one who never fights.    -Sun Tzu

The victims of a great natural disaster are worthy (though for how long is uncertain) while the victims of man-made imperial disasters are unworthy and very often unmentionable.    -John Pilger

The Left mocks the Right. The Right knows it’s right. Two ugly traits. How far should we go to try to understand each other’s point of view? Maybe the distance grace covered on the cross is a clue.    -Bono (U2)

The first act of love is always the giving of attention.    -Dallas Willard

There are lots of things that are ugly and terrible about war. I think that people on the right are more comfortable allowing for that.    -Jonah Goldberg

There was promulgation of false propaganda by the administration about the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. There was promulgation of false propaganda about Iraq as a base for Al Qaeda.    -Jimmy Carter

There are some faiths that every citizen should be acquainted with, simply because hundreds of millions of people live by them.    -Huston Smith

There is no one, and surely no entire people, in whom the image of God has been utterly extinguished.    -Walter Wink


There are few things more dangerous than a mixture of power, arrogance and incompetence.    -Bob Herbert

There is many a boy here today who looks on war as all glory, but, boys, it is all hell. You can bear this warning voice to generations yet to come. I look upon war with horror.    -William Tecumseh Sherman, 1880

They (the administration) need a divided America; but we don’t.    -Bill Clinton

This is an administration that believes it can do and say whatever it wants, and that attitude is changing the very nature of the United States.    -Bob Herbert

Those who have religion for their God will not have God for their religion.    -Unknown

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.    -Voltaire

To see tangible organizing actually work, to see people from a variety of backgrounds come together, to see social change leading to increased justice and human happiness is the most extraordinary feeling imaginable. It makes one feel ALIVE.    -Robert W. McChesney

Unselfish faith will prove to be America’s greatest resource in the difficult years ahead.    -Sen. George Norris, McCook, NE, 1944

Values are not just words; values are what we live by.    -John Kerry

Violence … changes only the rulers, but not the rules.    -Walter Wink


waiting, waiting While the rich oratory and the lying famous corrupt Senators mine our lives for another war.    -Thomas McGrath

We can do better than that.    -Howard Dean

We must become the change we want to see.    -Gandhi

We have made the Reich by propaganda.    -Joseph Paul Goebbels

We empower people to talk to us by listening to them.    -Howard Dean

What is life but what a man is thinking of all day? This is his fate and his employer.    -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster.    -Nietzsche

You can’t talk to the ignorant about lies, since they have no criteria.    -Ezra Pound

You can safely assume that you’ve created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.    -Anne Lamott

You have to have confidence in your ability, and then be tough enough to follow through.    -Rosalyn Carter


Featured Articles

Moral economic behavior stressed by Isaiah

Are Economic Matters a Moral Issue? Isaiah Thinks So.

In spite of Isaiah, and other Bible sources, we’ve all heard this - something like: I. It is NOT the government’s place to interfere in economic matters - tell people how they should spend their money or how they should treat their employees. That warps economic...
Read More

The Moral Priorities of Jesus – What Did Jesus Teach?

He said, "Why do you call me 'Lord, Lord' but do not do what I say?" Maybe he meant it. This short book (40 pages) is available as a free pdf, or as a paperback at LULU.com (see the links below). It treats the following issues.  Here, each chapter title is followed by...
Read More

The Civilized Are Responsible

Originally published in 1976. My how times have not changed. The civilized have created the wretched, quite coldly and deliberately, and do not intend to change the status quo; are responsible for their slaughter and enslavement; rain down bombs on defenseless...
Read More
hand writes with a pen in a notebook

The Quiet Places in Our Lives Make Our Public Activity Safer

Contemplation and Public Action The public good is most in danger when the voluntary visits to contemplation are neglected in favor of immediate communitarian action. We don't have to go off and become full-time contemplatives. But times of stepping aside from the...
Read More
Karol Wojtyla, John Paul II

John Paul II: Private Prayer and the Dangers of Public Life

Connie and I recently watched Karol: A Man Who Became Pope. It portrays Karol Wojtyla's life from his late teens, when the Nazi's invaded his city and nation, through WWII, then through decades of Communist rule (as a satellite of the Soviet Union), up to the day he...
Read More
Threat leads to assault. Hate leads to violence.

Hitler Defended Christian Morality and Family Values

Current prominent figures, speaking words the "Christian Right" wants to hear, are not the first national leaders to use Christian morality as a rallying cry. These words are from 1933: "The National Government will preserve and defend those basic principles on which...
Read More
Gun on Bible

Christians Should Not Enforce the Bible.

Here's another example of the misunderstanding and misuse of Scripture by the 'religious right'.  This was quoted to me to show that no Christian could ever vote for Democrats. "Don't you realize that if even one person is allowed to go on sinning, soon all will be...
Read More
100 quotes

100 Quotes

Nerd alert! This is a list that used to be behind the quote widget on the upper right of the page. They are from various places, maybe half from my personal reading (books). I'm not documenting sources because I don't have time or did not record them. There's good...
Read More
Neighbor

If You Do Not Love Your Neighbor Whom You CAN See – Can You Love God?

The author of "1 John" makes a simple, blunt, very logical analysis of our emotional attachments - or professed attachments. (1 John 4:20) If you do not love your brother whom you can see, how can you love God whom you cannot see? Well, John, that's easy! We do it all...
Read More

German Christians Sold Out to Power and Glory

[A Review of Strange Glory: A Life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, by Charles Marsh, 2014] This book is not written to coddle nor to discomfort whatever our self-image is as American Christians today; Marsh is trying to show reality. To me, two eras of Bonhoeffer's life seem...
Read More
Religion Running Government, Theocracy, We would regret it

Theocracy (Religion Runs the Government) – We Would Deeply Regret It

I am a church person, a person of faith. But I don't think we need a government that rules as if it were the voice of God. This nation's Constitution was written partly in order to help us avoid theocracy. Unfortunately there are Americans today who clearly think the...
Read More

On War – and Its Effects on Humans

Quotes from the e-newsletter I get from Information Clearing House. ... the United States, for generations, has sustained two parallel but opposed states of mind about military atrocities and human rights: one of U.S. benevolence, generally held by the public, and the...
Read More
Jesus - What Does He Want?

Is Trump a Christian? How Could We Tell?

There was some excitement among certain Republican Christians when Dobson said Trump had become a "baby" Christian and should be cut some slack on that basis. Two problems with that: A novice at practicing the Christian faith is not someone we should automatically...
Read More

Prophets MUST Improvise, In and For Our Cities.

The prophet’s task is to “reorder” and “refashion” the urban environment to be more just and peaceable. Yet ... the work of social transformation must be based on a deep inner transformation. That's the burden of this excellent book (quote from p97). Resurrection City...
Read More
brick-layer at work

The Kingdom of God. God’s New Economy. We Are Called To Do It.

"Over and against these senseless modern myths ... there is the "myth" of the God of goodness who has chosen people to prepare a kingdom of justice, truth, and love on earth. This myth dies hard. Why should we refuse to admit that Christ taught it to us?" [from Andre...
Read More

"THIS IS HOW they made the pleasant land desolate."

The Bible fairly often makes a direct connection between the desolation of a land (and its people - and, obviously, its economic life) and moral corruption in the people's prior social, legal, and economic patterns. Here's an example from Zechariah 7. The residents...
Read More

Two Types of Religion – Authority, Love

Sometimes I feel there are obviously two primary modes for religious practice in this world. That amazement is the opposite of complacency and self-satisfaction. And that gentleness is very different from constant critique and...
Read More
fish racism

Jesus and Racism – Samaritan Lives Matter – Black Lives Matter

Samaritans in Jesus' day were both religiously and racially despised. The phrase "Samaritan lives matter" would have been very offensive to the Jewish culture in which Jesus was raised and in which he was a teacher and doer of good. But to Jesus, clearly Samaritan...
Read More

Is Jesus’ Style “Judge Thy Neighbor”? Is That Jesus’ New Commandment?

Jesus was a highly respected teacher of morality and of the spiritual life. So, logically enough, a man asked him to take a stand on a moral issue between the man and his brother (Luke 12:13-15) - Someone in the crowd said to him, "Teacher, tell my brother to divide...
Read More

Turn the Other Cheek – means Resist Them NonViolently

I. THE PROBLEM: Jesus says to turn the other cheek. [See a summary of this post.] Is it ever appropriate for Christians to resist authority? Many of us feel there is much in the behavior of our national leaders that cries out for criticism and resistance. Are...
Read More
Jesus - What Does He Want?

Why I Pay Attention to Jesus Christ

WHY? Why should we focus any more on Jesus Christ than on Abraham or Moses or Isaiah? Or on the laws in the Bible, or prophecy, or the end of the world? Is focus on Jesus more needed than pointing out sins – especially other people’s sins? Is Christ actually more...
Read More

Why Many Christians Do Not Vote Republican

This was written about 12 years ago (as of today, in February 2017). Wow. And the problems remain, and have grown; which means these things still need thinking and talking about. References and Bible quotations...
Read More