Thinking about thinking

Reflecting on thinking, here are a few faves:

  1. Impartial observers from other planets would consider ours an utterly bizarre enclave if it were populated by birds, defined as flying animals, that nevertheless rarely or never actually flew. They would also be perplexed if they encountered in our seas, lakes, rivers, and ponds, creatures defined as swimmers that never did any swimming. But they would be even more surprised to encounter a species defined as a thinking animal if, in fact, the creature very rarely indulged in actual thinking.
      —Steve Allen
  2. Democracy is a government where you can say what you think even if you don’t think.
      —Author unknown
  3. Some people get lost in thought because it’s such unfamiliar territory.
      —G. Behn
  4. Logic: The art of thinking and reasoning in strict accordance with the limitations and incapacities of the human misunderstanding.
      —Ambrose Bierce
  5. It is well for people who think, to change their minds occasionally in order to keep them clean.
      —Luther Burbank
  6. Believing is easier than thinking. Hence so many more believers than thinkers.
      —Bruce Calvert
  7. He who will not reason is a bigot; he who cannot is a fool; and he who dares not is a slave.
      —William Drummond
  8. The trouble with most people is that they think with their hopes or fears or wishes rather than with their minds.
      —Will Durant
  9. A sect or party is an elegant incognito devised to save a man from the vexation of thinking.
      —Ralph Waldo Emerson
  10. Belief is when someone else does the thinking.
      —Buckminster Fuller, 1972
  11. Thinking is…what a great many people think they are doing when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.
      —William James
  12. Too often we… enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.
      —John F. Kennedy
  13. Did you ever stop to think, and forget to start again?
      —Winnie the Pooh
  14. Most people would die sooner than think; in fact, they do so.
      —Bertrand Russell
  15. Failures are divided into two classes—those who thought and never did, and those who did and never thought.
      —John Charles Salak
  16. Few people think more than two or three times a year; I have made an international reputation for myself by thinking once a week.
      —George Bernard Shaw
  17. No problem can withstand the assault of sustained thinking.
      —Voltaire
  18. If you don’t think too good, don’t think too much.
      —Ted Williams
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