For particulars, as everyone knows, make for virtue and happiness; generalities are intellectually necessary evils.
Ending is better than mending.
I’m thinking of a queer feeling I sometimes get, a feeling that I’ve got something important to say and the power to say it – only I don’t know what it is, and I can’t make any use of the power.
Bernard, by this time, was fast asleep and smiling at the private paradise of dreams. Smiling, smiling. But inexorably, every thirty seconds, the minute hand of the electric clock above his bed jumped forward with an almost imperceptible click. Click, click, click, click … And it was morning. Bernad was back among the miseries of space and time. It was in the lowest spirits that he taxied across to his work at the Conditioning Centre. The intoxication of success had evaporated; he was soberly his old self; and by contrast with the temporary balloon of these last weeks, the old self seemed unprecedently heavier than the surrounding atmosphere.
One of the principal functions of a friend is to suffer (in a milder and symbolic form) the punishments that we should like, but are unable, to inflict upon our enemies.
With an infinity of precautions she opened the door a quarter of an inch.
With the cautious tenderness of one who strokes a notoriously vicious animal, he patted the Savage’s arm.
Hesitant on the fringes of the battle. “They’re done for,” said Bernard and, urged by a sudden impulse, ran forward to help them; then thought better of it and halted; then, ashamed, stepped forward again; then again thought better of it, and was standing in an agony of humiliated indecision – thinking that they might be killed if he didn’t help them, and that he might be killed if he did – when (Ford be praised!), goggle-eyed and swine-snouted in their gas-masks, in ran the police.
Bernard dashed to meet them. He waved his arms; and it was action, he was doing something.
Actual happiness always looks pretty squalid in comparison with the overcompensations for misery. And, of course, stability isn’t nearly so spectacular as instability. And being contented has none of the glamour of a good fight against misfortune, none of the picturesqueness of a struggle with temptation, or a fatal overthrow by passion or doubt. Happiness is never grand.
He defined philosophy as the finding of bad reason for what one believes by instinct. As if one believed anything by instinct! One believes things because one has been conditioned to believe them. Finding bad reasons for what one believes for other bad reasons – that’s philosophy. People believe in God because they’ve been conditioned to believe in God.
They were all crying together; and, intoxicated by the noise, the unanimity, the sense of rhythmical atonement, they might, it seemed, have gone on for hours – almost indefinitely. But at about the twenty-fifth repetition the proceedings were startlingly interrupted.