• “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”

— Albert Einstein

  • “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.”

— Albert Einstein

  • “I will not say that I failed 1000 times, I will say that I discovered 1000 ways that can cause failure.”

— Thomas Alva Edison

  • “Be the change you want to see in the world.”

— Mahatama Gandhi

  • “It is not our abilities that show what we truly are. It is our choices.”

— Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

  • This does not mean a closed mind, but actually an empty mind and a ready mind. If your mind is empty, it is always ready for anything; it is open to everything. In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities; in the expert’s mind there are few.

— Shunryu Suzuki-roshi, Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind

  • Your study should be broad and diversified. Do not limit yourself.
  • Examine and question. Ask yourself how and why something works. Be receptive to what others ignore.
  • Be deliberate and careful in your thinking. Use your mind to discover proper understanding.
  • Clearly examine. Separate concepts distinctly, then decide upon the proper course.
  • Practice sincerely.

— ”The Five Virtues of T’ai Chi” an early manuscript by an unknown master.

  • The master shook his head. ”I could answer your questions but I won’t try because you wouldn’t understand the answer. Now listen. Imagine that I am holding a pot of tea, and you are thirsty. You want me to give you tea. I can pour tea but you’ll have to produce a cup. I can’t pour the tea on your hands or you’ll get burnt. If I pour it on the floor I shall spoil the floormats. You have to have a cup. That cup you will form in yourself by the training you will receive here.”

— Janwillem Van de Wetering, The Empty Mirror

  • ”I cannot understand what makes them [scientists] tick. They are always wrong and they always go on.”

— Hoyle, The Black Cloud

  • Not many years ago I began to play the cello. Most people would say that what I am doing is ”learning to play” the cello. But these words carry into our minds the strange idea that there exists two very different processes: 1) learning to play the cello; and 2) playing the cello. They imply that I will do the first until I have completed it, at which point I will stop the first process and begin the second; in short, that I will go on ”learning to play” until I have ”learned to play” and that then I will begin to play. Of course, this is nonsense. There are not two processes, but one. We learn to do something by doing it. There is no other way.

— John Holt

  • “The ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and when they are wrong, are more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else. Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt from any intellectual influence, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist.”

— John Maynard Keynes

  • “Sow a thought, and you reap an act; Sow an act, and you reap a habit; Sow a habit, and you reap a character; Sow a character, and you reap a destiny.”

— Charles Reade

  • “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

— Mark Twain

  • “If there is a problem you can’t solve, then there is an easier problem you can solve: find it.”

— George Pólya

  • “A set is a Many which allows itself to be thought of as a One.”

— Georg Cantor

  • “Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.”

— Aristotle (Nicomachean Ethics)

  • “The contempt of risk and the presumptuous hope of success, are in no period of life more active than at the age at which young people chuse their professions.”

— Adam Smith, Wealth of Nations (Book I, Chapter X, Part I, 1776)

  • “The task of the excellent teacher is to stimulate ‘apparently ordinary’ people to unusual effort. The tough problem is not in identifying winners: it is in making winners out of ordinary people.”

— K.Patricia Cross