Natural Selection almost inevitably causes much Extinction of the less improved forms of life and induces what I have called Divergence of Character.
The question of whether there exists a Creator and Ruler of the Universe has been answered in the affirmative by some of the highest intellects that have ever existed.
Nevertheless so profound is our ignorance, and so high our presumption, that we marvel when we hear of the extinction of an organic being; and as we do not see the cause, we invoke cataclysms to desolate the world, or invent laws on the duration of the forms of life!
The loss of these tastes for poetry and music is a loss of happiness, and may possibly be injurious to the intellect, and more probably to the moral character, by enfeebling the emotional part of our nature.
We are not here concerned with hopes or fears, only with truth as far as our reason permits us to discover it.
Freedom of thought is best promoted by the gradual illumination of men's minds which follows from the advance of science.
Man in his arrogance thinks himself a great work, worthy of the interposition of a deity. More humble, and I believe truer, to consider him created from animals.
Great is the power of steady misrepresentation.
Great is the power of steady misrepresentation; but the history of science shows that fortunately this power does not long endure.
The highest possible stage in moral culture is when we recognise that we ought to control our thoughts.
Even when we are quite alone, how often do we think with pleasure or pain of what others think of us -- of their imagined approbation or disapprobation.
There is no fundamental difference between man and animals in their ability to feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery.
If I had my life to live over again, I would have made a rule to read some poetry and listen to some music at least once every week.
It is the long history of humankind (and animal kind, too) that those who learned to collaborate and improvise most effectively have prevailed.
In the long history of humankind (and animal kind, too) those who learned to collaborate and improvise most effectively have prevailed.
My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts.
My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive.
We can allow satellites, planets, suns, universe, nay whole systems of universes, to be governed by laws, but the smallest insect, we wish to be created at once by special act.
The mystery of the beginning of all things is insoluble by us; and I for one must be content to remain an agnostic.
On the ordinary view of each species having been independently created, we gain no scientific explanation.
A moral being is one who is capable of reflecting on his past actions and their motives -- of approving of some and disapproving of others.