photo of William JamesPhoto Credit: WikiMedia Commons

Quotes by William James

Welcome to our collection of quotes (with shareable picture quotes) by William James. We hope you enjoy pondering them and that you will share them widely.

Wikipedia Summary for William James

William James (January 11, 1842 – August 26, 1910) was an American philosopher, historian, and psychologist, and the first educator to offer a psychology course in the United States.

James is considered to be a leading thinker of the late nineteenth century, one of the most influential philosophers of the United States, and the "Father of American psychology".\n\nAlong with Charles Sanders Peirce, James established the philosophical school known as pragmatism, and is also cited as one of the founders of functional psychology. A Review of General Psychology analysis, published in 2002, ranked James as the 14th most eminent psychologist of the 20th century.

A survey published in American Psychologist in 1991 ranked James's reputation in second place,

after Wilhelm Wundt, who is widely regarded as the founder of experimental psychology.

James also developed the philosophical perspective known as radical empiricism. James's work has influenced philosophers and academics such as Émile Durkheim, W. E. B. Du Bois, Edmund Husserl, Bertrand Russell, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Hilary Putnam, Richard Rorty, and Marilynne Robinson.

Born into a wealthy family, James was the son of the Swedenborgian theologian Henry James Sr. and the brother of both the prominent novelist Henry James and the diarist Alice James. James trained as a physician and taught anatomy at Harvard, but never practiced medicine. Instead he pursued his interests in psychology and then philosophy. James wrote widely on many topics, including epistemology, education, metaphysics, psychology, religion, and mysticism. Among his most influential books are The Principles of Psychology, a groundbreaking text in the field of psychology; Essays in Radical Empiricism, an important text in philosophy; and The Varieties of Religious Experience, an investigation of different forms of religious experience, including theories on mind-cure.

Quote: Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does. by author William James overlaid on photo of sunset dirt road
Photo Credit: DiscoverQuotes Staff

Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.


Quote: Effort is a measure of a Man. by author William James overlaid on photo of white and tan dog laying on floor
Photo Credit: Anna Dudkova

Effort is a measure of a Man.


Quote: The art of being wise is knowing what to overlook. by author William James overlaid on photo of brown and black tiger near body of water
Photo Credit: Ratanjot Singh

The art of being wise is knowing what to overlook.


Quote: A man of sense is never discouraged by difficulties; he redoubles his industry and his diligence, he perseveres and infallibly prevails at last. by author William James overlaid on photo of closeup photography of brown and gray concrete bricks
Photo Credit: Annie Spratt

A man of sense is never discouraged by difficulties; he redoubles his industry and his diligence, he perseveres and infallibly prevails at last.


Quote: The great use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it. by author William James overlaid on photo of close-up photography of heart shaped fairy lite on brown sand
Photo Credit: Fadi Xd

The great use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The great use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it." "This life is worth living, we can say, since it is what we make it." "Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.


Quote: Genius means little more than the faculty of perceiving in an unhabitual way. by author William James overlaid on photo of gray concrete surface
Photo Credit: Henry & Co.

Genius means little more than the faculty of perceiving in an unhabitual way.


Quote: The deepest craving of human nature is the need to be appreciated. by author William James overlaid on photo of adult black and white dog leaning on wooden fence
Photo Credit: Lawrence Hookham

The deepest craving of human nature is the need to be appreciated.


Quote: Man lives for science as well as bread. by author William James overlaid on photo of 1 us dollar bill
Photo Credit: Emilio Takas

Man lives for science as well as bread.


Quote: Begin to be now what you will be hereafter. by author William James overlaid on photo of unknown persons standing outdoors
Photo Credit: Dim Hou

Begin to be now what you will be hereafter.


Quote: Belief creates the actual fact. by author William James overlaid on photo of stars in the sky during night time
Photo Credit: James Lee

Belief creates the actual fact.


Quote: Impulse without reason is not enough, and reason without impulse is a poor makeshift. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Impulse without reason is not enough, and reason without impulse is a poor makeshift.


Quote: Most people never run far enough on the first wind to find out they've got a second. Give your dreams all you've got, and you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Most people never run far enough on the first wind to find out they've got a second. Give your dreams all you've got, and you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you.


Quote: What every genuine philosopher (every genuine man, in fact) craves most is praise-although the philosophers generally call it recognition'! by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

What every genuine philosopher (every genuine man, in fact) craves most is praise-although the philosophers generally call it recognition'!




Quote: The discovery of the power of our thoughts will prove to be the most important discovery of our time. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The discovery of the power of our thoughts will prove to be the most important discovery of our time.


Quote: Real servants don't try to use God for their purposes. They let God use them for His purposes. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Real servants don't try to use God for their purposes. They let God use them for His purposes.


Quote: The sway of alcohol over mankind is unquestionably due to its power to stimulate the mystical faculties of human nature. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The sway of alcohol over mankind is unquestionably due to its power to stimulate the mystical faculties of human nature.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The sway of alcohol over mankind is unquestionably due to its power to stimulate the mystical faculties of human nature, usually crushed to earth by the cold facts and dry criticisms of the sober hour.


Quote: The greatest discovery of our generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind. As you think, so shall you be. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The greatest discovery of our generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind. As you think, so shall you be.


Quote: Despair lames most people, but it wakes others fully up. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Despair lames most people, but it wakes others fully up.


Quote: There is but one cause of human failure. And that is man's lack of faith in his true self. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

There is but one cause of human failure. And that is man's lack of faith in his true self.


Quote: The real ground for supposing free-will is indeed pragmatic, but it has nothing to do with this contemptible right to punish. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The real ground for supposing free-will is indeed pragmatic, but it has nothing to do with this contemptible right to punish.


Quote: In the practical use of our intellect, forgetting is as important as remembering. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

In the practical use of our intellect, forgetting is as important as remembering.


Quote: The path to cheerfulness is to sit cheerfully and to act and speak as if cheerfulness were already there. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The path to cheerfulness is to sit cheerfully and to act and speak as if cheerfulness were already there.


Quote: To change one's life: start immediately, Do it flamboyantly, no exceptions, no excuses. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

To change one's life: start immediately, Do it flamboyantly, no exceptions, no excuses.


Quote: It is our attitude at the beginning of a difficult task which, more than
anything else, will affect It's successful outcome. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

It is our attitude at the beginning of a difficult task which, more than
anything else, will affect It's successful outcome.


Quote: To leap across an abyss, one is better served by faith than doubt. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

To leap across an abyss, one is better served by faith than doubt.


Quote: Immortality is one of the great spiritual needs of man. The churches have constituted themselves the official guardians of the need, with the result that some of them actually pretend to accord or to withhold it from the individual by their conventional sacraments. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote; white text on black background

Immortality is one of the great spiritual needs of man. The churches have constituted themselves the official guardians of the need, with the result that some of them actually pretend to accord or to withhold it from the individual by their conventional sacraments.


Quote: Be not afraid of life. Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Be not afraid of life. Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.


Quote: In business for yourself, not by yourself. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

In business for yourself, not by yourself.


Quote: The truth remains that, after adolescence has begun, words, words, words, must constitute a large part, and an always larger part as life advances, of what the human being has to learn. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The truth remains that, after adolescence has begun, words, words, words, must constitute a large part, and an always larger part as life advances, of what the human being has to learn.


Quote: Seize the very first possible opportunity to act on every resolution you make, and on every emotional prompting you may experience in the direction of the habits you aspire to gain. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Seize the very first possible opportunity to act on every resolution you make, and on every emotional prompting you may experience in the direction of the habits you aspire to gain.


Quote: An unlearned carpenter of my acquaintance once said in my hearing: There is very little difference between one man and another; but what little there is, is very important. This distinction seems to me to go to the root of the matter. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

An unlearned carpenter of my acquaintance once said in my hearing: There is very little difference between one man and another; but what little there is, is very important. This distinction seems to me to go to the root of the matter.


Quote: Equality is attainable as long as you are part of the majority. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Equality is attainable as long as you are part of the majority.


Quote: Truth is one species of good, and not, as is usually supposed, a category distinct from good, and co-ordinate with it. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Truth is one species of good, and not, as is usually supposed, a category distinct from good, and co-ordinate with it.


Quote: All natural goods perish. Riches take wings; fame is a breath; love is a cheat; youth and health and pleasure vanish. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

All natural goods perish. Riches take wings; fame is a breath; love is a cheat; youth and health and pleasure vanish.


Quote: One hears of the mechanical equivalent of heat. What we now need to discover in the social realm is the moral equivalent of war: something heroic that will speak to men as universally as war does, and yet will be as compatible with their spiritual selves as war has proved itself to be incompatible. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote: One hears of the mechanical equivalent of heat. What we now need to discover in the social realm is the moral equivalent of war: something heroic that will speak to men as universally as war does, and yet will be as compatible with their spiritual selves as war has proved itself to be incompatible.- black text on quotes background

One hears of the mechanical equivalent of heat. What we now need to discover in the social realm is the moral equivalent of war: something heroic that will speak to men as universally as war does, and yet will be as compatible with their spiritual selves as war has proved itself to be incompatible.


Quote: My experience is what I agree to attend to. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

My experience is what I agree to attend to.


Quote: The whole drift of my education goes to persuade me that the world of our present consciousness is only one out of many worlds of consciousness that exist. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The whole drift of my education goes to persuade me that the world of our present consciousness is only one out of many worlds of consciousness that exist.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The whole drift of my education goes to persuade me that the world of our present consciousness is only one out of many worlds of consciousness that exist, and that those other worlds must contain experiences which have a meaning for our life also; and that although in the main their experiences and those of this world keep discrete, yet the two become continuous at certain points, and higher energies filter in.


Quote: Organization and method mean much, but contagious human characters mean more in a university. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Organization and method mean much, but contagious human characters mean more in a university.


Quote: The belief in free-will is not in the least incompatible with the belief in Providence, provided you do not restrict the Providence to fulminating nothing but fatal decrees. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The belief in free-will is not in the least incompatible with the belief in Providence, provided you do not restrict the Providence to fulminating nothing but fatal decrees.


Quote: Once you accept an idea, it's an idea whose time has come. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Once you accept an idea, it's an idea whose time has come.


Quote: If you wish to upset the law that all crows are black, you mustn't seek to show that no crows are; it is enough if you prove one single crow to be white. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

If you wish to upset the law that all crows are black, you mustn't seek to show that no crows are; it is enough if you prove one single crow to be white.


Quote: 'Pure experience' is the name I gave to the immediate flux of life which furnishes the material to our later reflection with its conceptual categories. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

'Pure experience' is the name I gave to the immediate flux of life which furnishes the material to our later reflection with its conceptual categories.


Quote: My first act of free will shall be to believe in free will. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

My first act of free will shall be to believe in free will.


Quote: We must make automatic and habitual, as early as possible, as many useful actions as we can, and as carefully guard against the growing into ways that are likely to be disadvantageous. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

We must make automatic and habitual, as early as possible, as many useful actions as we can, and as carefully guard against the growing into ways that are likely to be disadvantageous.


Quote: With mere good intentions hell is proverbially paved. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

With mere good intentions hell is proverbially paved.


Quote: Language is the most imperfect and expensive means yet discovered for communicating thought. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Language is the most imperfect and expensive means yet discovered for communicating thought.


Quote: Our ideas must agree with realities, be such realities concrete or abstract. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Our ideas must agree with realities, be such realities concrete or abstract.


Quote: A great idea goes through three stages on its way to acceptance: 1) it is dismissed as nonsense, 2) it is acknowledged as true, but insignificant, 3) finally, it is seen to be important, but not really anything new. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

A great idea goes through three stages on its way to acceptance: 1) it is dismissed as nonsense, 2) it is acknowledged as true, but insignificant, 3) finally, it is seen to be important, but not really anything new.


Quote: A rule of thinking which would absolutely prevent me from acknowledging certain kinds of truth if those truths were really there, would be an irrational rule. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

A rule of thinking which would absolutely prevent me from acknowledging certain kinds of truth if those truths were really there, would be an irrational rule.


Quote: What was bright and exciting becomes weary, flat, and unprofitable. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

What was bright and exciting becomes weary, flat, and unprofitable.


Quote: The attempt at introspective analysis... is in fact like seizing a spinning top to catch its motion, or trying to turn up the gas quickly enough to see the darkness. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The attempt at introspective analysis... is in fact like seizing a spinning top to catch its motion, or trying to turn up the gas quickly enough to see the darkness.


Quote: Instinct leads, logic does but follow. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Instinct leads, logic does but follow.


Quote: A winner's attitude: it may be difficult, but it's possible. A loser's attitude: It may be possible, but it's too difficult. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

A winner's attitude: it may be difficult, but it's possible. A loser's attitude: It may be possible, but it's too difficult.


Quote: If any one phrase could gather its (religion's) universal message, that phrase would be, -- All is not vanity in this Universe, whatever the appearances may suggest. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

If any one phrase could gather its (religion's) universal message, that phrase would be, -- All is not vanity in this Universe, whatever the appearances may suggest.




Quote: Life feels like a real fight -- as if there were something really wild in the universe which we, with all our idealities and faithfulnesses, are needed to redeem. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Life feels like a real fight -- as if there were something really wild in the universe which we, with all our idealities and faithfulnesses, are needed to redeem.


Quote: One of the greatest discoveries of our time is that a man can alter the state of their life by altering the state of their mind. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

One of the greatest discoveries of our time is that a man can alter the state of their life by altering the state of their mind.




Quote: The university most worthy of rational admiration is that one in which your lonely thinker can feel himself lonely, most positively furthered, and most richly fed. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The university most worthy of rational admiration is that one in which your lonely thinker can feel himself lonely, most positively furthered, and most richly fed.


Quote: In any project the important factor is your belief. Without belief, there can be no successful outcome. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

In any project the important factor is your belief. Without belief, there can be no successful outcome.


Quote: Man, biologically considered ... is simply the most formidable of all beasts of prey, and, indeed, the only one that preys systematically on its own kind. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Man, biologically considered ... is simply the most formidable of all beasts of prey, and, indeed, the only one that preys systematically on its own kind.


Quote: The teacher's prime concern should be to ingrain into the pupil that assortment of habits that shall be most useful to him throughout life. Education is for behavior, and habits are the stuff of which behavior consists. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The teacher's prime concern should be to ingrain into the pupil that assortment of habits that shall be most useful to him throughout life. Education is for behavior, and habits are the stuff of which behavior consists.


Quote: If WE claim only reasonable probability, it will be as much as men who love the truth can ever at any given moment hope to have within their grasp. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

If WE claim only reasonable probability, it will be as much as men who love the truth can ever at any given moment hope to have within their grasp.


Quote: If I should now utter piercing shrieks and act like a maniac on this platform, it would make many of you revise your ideas as to the probable worth of my philosophy. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

If I should now utter piercing shrieks and act like a maniac on this platform, it would make many of you revise your ideas as to the probable worth of my philosophy.


Quote: Faith means belief in something concerning which doubt is still theoretically possible ... faith is the readiness to act in a cause the prosperous issue of which is not certified to us in advance. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Faith means belief in something concerning which doubt is still theoretically possible ... faith is the readiness to act in a cause the prosperous issue of which is not certified to us in advance.


Quote: Our colleges ought to have lit up in us a lasting relish for a better kind of man, a loss of appetite for mediocrities. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Our colleges ought to have lit up in us a lasting relish for a better kind of man, a loss of appetite for mediocrities.


Quote: Each of us is in fact what he is almost exclusively by virtue of his imitative-ness. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Each of us is in fact what he is almost exclusively by virtue of his imitative-ness.


Quote: In modern eyes, precious though wars may be they must not be waged solely for the sake of the ideal harvest. Only when forced upon one, is a war now thought permissible. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

In modern eyes, precious though wars may be they must not be waged solely for the sake of the ideal harvest. Only when forced upon one, is a war now thought permissible.




Quote: A man with no philosophy in him is the most inauspicious and unprofitable of all possible social mates. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

A man with no philosophy in him is the most inauspicious and unprofitable of all possible social mates.


Quote: Philosophy is at once the most sublime and the most trivial of human pursuits. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Philosophy is at once the most sublime and the most trivial of human pursuits.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Philosophy is at once the most sublime and the most trivial of human pursuits. It works in the minutest crannies and it opens outthe widest vistas. It 'bakes no bread', as has been said, but it can inspire our souls with courage.


Quote: There is a stream, a succession of states, or waves, or fields (or whatever you please to call them), of knowledge, of feeling, of desire, of deliberation, etc., that constantly pass and repass, and that constitute our inner life. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

There is a stream, a succession of states, or waves, or fields (or whatever you please to call them), of knowledge, of feeling, of desire, of deliberation, etc., that constantly pass and repass, and that constitute our inner life.


Quote: Need and struggle are what excite and inspire us; our hour of triumph is what brings the void. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Need and struggle are what excite and inspire us; our hour of triumph is what brings the void.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Need and struggle are what excite and inspire us; our hour of triumph is what brings the void. Not the Jews of the captivity, but those of the days of Solomon 's glory are those from whom the pessimistic utterances in our Bible come.


Quote: In order to disprove the assertion that all crows are black, one white crow is sufficient. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

In order to disprove the assertion that all crows are black, one white crow is sufficient.


Quote: As Charles Lamb says, there is nothing so nice as doing good by stealth and being found out by accident, so I now say it is even nicer to make heroic decisions and to be prevented by 'circumstances beyond your control' from ever trying to execute them. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

As Charles Lamb says, there is nothing so nice as doing good by stealth and being found out by accident, so I now say it is even nicer to make heroic decisions and to be prevented by 'circumstances beyond your control' from ever trying to execute them.


Quote: Invention, using the term most broadly, and imitation, are the two legs, so to call them, on which the human race historically has walked. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Invention, using the term most broadly, and imitation, are the two legs, so to call them, on which the human race historically has walked.


Quote: Nature in her unfathomable designs had mixed us of clay and flame, of brain and mind, that the two things hang indubitably together and determine each other's being but how or why, no mortal may ever know. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Nature in her unfathomable designs had mixed us of clay and flame, of brain and mind, that the two things hang indubitably together and determine each other's being but how or why, no mortal may ever know.


Quote: No more fiendish punishment could be devised, were such a thing physically possible, than that one should be turned loose in society and remain absolutely unnoticed. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

No more fiendish punishment could be devised, were such a thing physically possible, than that one should be turned loose in society and remain absolutely unnoticed.


Quote: True ideas are those that we can assimilate, validate, corroborate, and verify. False ideas are those that we cannot. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

True ideas are those that we can assimilate, validate, corroborate, and verify. False ideas are those that we cannot.


Quote: First... a new theory is attacked as absurd; then it is admitted to be true, but obvious and insignificant; finally it is seen to be so important that its adversaries claim that they themselves discovered it. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

First... a new theory is attacked as absurd; then it is admitted to be true, but obvious and insignificant; finally it is seen to be so important that its adversaries claim that they themselves discovered it.


Quote: Evil is a disease; and worry over disease is itself an additional form of disease, which only adds to the original complaint. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Evil is a disease; and worry over disease is itself an additional form of disease, which only adds to the original complaint.


Quote: We must be careful not to confuse data with the abstractions we use to analyse them. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

We must be careful not to confuse data with the abstractions we use to analyse them.


Quote: Procrastination is attitude's natural assassin. There's nothing so fatiguing as an uncompleted task. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Procrastination is attitude's natural assassin. There's nothing so fatiguing as an uncompleted task.


Quote: Each of us literally chooses, by his way of attending to things, what sort of universe he shall appear to himself to inhabit. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Each of us literally chooses, by his way of attending to things, what sort of universe he shall appear to himself to inhabit.




Quote: There is no being capable of a spiritual life who does not have within him a jungle. Where the wolf constantly HOWLS and the OBSCENE bird of night chatters endlessly. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

There is no being capable of a spiritual life who does not have within him a jungle. Where the wolf constantly HOWLS and the OBSCENE bird of night chatters endlessly.


Quote: Science must constantly be reminded that her purposes are not the only purposes and that the order of uniform causation which she has use for, and is therefore right in postulating, may be enveloped in a wider order, on which she has no claim at all. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Science must constantly be reminded that her purposes are not the only purposes and that the order of uniform causation which she has use for, and is therefore right in postulating, may be enveloped in a wider order, on which she has no claim at all.


Quote: Objective evidence and certitude are doubtless very fine ideals to play with, but where on this moonlit and dream-visited planet are they found? by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Objective evidence and certitude are doubtless very fine ideals to play with, but where on this moonlit and dream-visited planet are they found?


Quote: To give the theory plenty of 'rope' and see if it hangs itself eventually is better tactics than to choke it off at the outset b abstract accusations of self-contradiction. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

To give the theory plenty of 'rope' and see if it hangs itself eventually is better tactics than to choke it off at the outset b abstract accusations of self-contradiction.


Quote: Our intelligence cannot wall itself up alive, like a pupa in a chrysalis. It must at any cost keep on speaking terms with the universe that engendered it. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Our intelligence cannot wall itself up alive, like a pupa in a chrysalis. It must at any cost keep on speaking terms with the universe that engendered it.


Quote: Life is one long struggle between conclusions based on abstract ways of conceiving cases, and opposite conclusions prompted by our instinctive perception of them. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Life is one long struggle between conclusions based on abstract ways of conceiving cases, and opposite conclusions prompted by our instinctive perception of them.


Quote: What a magnificent land and race is this Britain! Everything about them is of better quality than the corresponding thing in the U.S.... Yet I believe (or suspect) that ours is eventually the bigger destiny, if we can only succeed in living up to it. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

What a magnificent land and race is this Britain! Everything about them is of better quality than the corresponding thing in the U.S.... Yet I believe (or suspect) that ours is eventually the bigger destiny, if we can only succeed in living up to it.


Quote: Earnestness means willingness to live with energy, though energy bring pain. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Earnestness means willingness to live with energy, though energy bring pain.


Quote: Truth, as any dictionary will tell you, is a property of certain of our ideas. It means their agreement, as falsity means their disagreement, with reality. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Truth, as any dictionary will tell you, is a property of certain of our ideas. It means their agreement, as falsity means their disagreement, with reality.


Quote: Strength is a facade for the proud, weakness is a mask for the lazy. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Strength is a facade for the proud, weakness is a mask for the lazy.


Quote: Tension is a habit. Relaxing is a habit. Bad habits can be broken, good habits formed. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Tension is a habit. Relaxing is a habit. Bad habits can be broken, good habits formed.


Quote: Touch is the alpha and omega of affection. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Touch is the alpha and omega of affection.




Quote: Asceticism may be a mere expression of organic hardihood, disgusted with too much ease. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Asceticism may be a mere expression of organic hardihood, disgusted with too much ease.


Quote: Every time a resolve or a fine glow of feeling evaporates without bearing practical fruit is worse than a chance lost; it works so as positively to hinder future resolutions and emotions from taking the normal path of discharge. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Every time a resolve or a fine glow of feeling evaporates without bearing practical fruit is worse than a chance lost; it works so as positively to hinder future resolutions and emotions from taking the normal path of discharge.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Every time a resolve or a fine glow of feeling evaporates without bearing practical fruit is worse than a chance lost; it works to hinder future resolutions and emotions from taking the normal path of discharge. There is no more contemptible type of human character than that of the nerveless sentimentalist and dreamer, who spends his life in a weltering sea of sensibility and emotion, but who never does a manly concrete deed.


Quote: Focus on increasing service. Becoming great where you are. Pile in the wood. The heat will follow. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Focus on increasing service. Becoming great where you are. Pile in the wood. The heat will follow.


Quote: Experience, as we know, has a way of boiling over, and making us correct our present formulas. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Experience, as we know, has a way of boiling over, and making us correct our present formulas.


Quote: The desire to gain wealth and the fear to lose it are our chief breeders of cowardice and propagators of corruption. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The desire to gain wealth and the fear to lose it are our chief breeders of cowardice and propagators of corruption.


Quote: All the qualities of a man acquire dignity when he knows that the service of the collectivity that owns him needs them. If proud of the collectivity, his own pride rises in proportion. No collectivity is like an army for nourishing such pride. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

All the qualities of a man acquire dignity when he knows that the service of the collectivity that owns him needs them. If proud of the collectivity, his own pride rises in proportion. No collectivity is like an army for nourishing such pride.


Quote: Every way of classifying a thing is but a way of handling it for some particular purpose. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Every way of classifying a thing is but a way of handling it for some particular purpose.


Quote: Our volitional habits depend, then, first, on what the stock of ideas is which we have; and, second, on the habitual coupling of the several ideas with action or inaction respectively. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Our volitional habits depend, then, first, on what the stock of ideas is which we have; and, second, on the habitual coupling of the several ideas with action or inaction respectively.


Quote: All our life, so far as it has definite form, is but a mass of habits. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

All our life, so far as it has definite form, is but a mass of habits.


Quote: We want all our friends to tell us our bad qualities; it is only the particular ass that does so whom we can't tolerate. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

We want all our friends to tell us our bad qualities; it is only the particular ass that does so whom we can't tolerate.


Quote: Marvelous as may be the power of my dog to understand my moods, deathless as his affection and fidelity, his mental state is as unsolved a mystery to me as it was to my remotest ancestor. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Marvelous as may be the power of my dog to understand my moods, deathless as his affection and fidelity, his mental state is as unsolved a mystery to me as it was to my remotest ancestor.


Quote: I am tired of the position of the dried-up critic and doubter. The believer is the true full man. (from a biography of James by Robert D. Richardson). by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

I am tired of the position of the dried-up critic and doubter. The believer is the true full man. (from a biography of James by Robert D. Richardson).


Quote: I don't see how an epigram, being a bolt from the blue, with no introduction or cue, ever gets itself writ. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

I don't see how an epigram, being a bolt from the blue, with no introduction or cue, ever gets itself writ.


Quote: Fear of life in one form or another is the great thing to exorcise. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Fear of life in one form or another is the great thing to exorcise.


Quote: O my Bergson, you are a magician, and your book is a marvel, a real wonder in the history of philosophy ... In finishing it I found ... such a flavor of persistent euphony, as of a rich river that never foamed or ran thin, but steadily and firmly proceeded with its banks full to the brim. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote: O my Bergson, you are a magician, and your book is a marvel, a real wonder in the history of philosophy ... In finishing it I found ... such a flavor of persistent euphony, as of a rich river that never foamed or ran thin, but steadily and firmly proceeded with its banks full to the brim.- black text on quotes background

O my Bergson, you are a magician, and your book is a marvel, a real wonder in the history of philosophy ... In finishing it I found ... such a flavor of persistent euphony, as of a rich river that never foamed or ran thin, but steadily and firmly proceeded with its banks full to the brim.


Quote: Footnotes -- little dogs yapping at the heels of the text. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Footnotes -- little dogs yapping at the heels of the text.


Quote: In its broadest term, religion says that there is an unseen order, and that our supreme good lies in rightful relations to it. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

In its broadest term, religion says that there is an unseen order, and that our supreme good lies in rightful relations to it.


Quote: Most men have a good memory for facts connected with their own pursuits. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Most men have a good memory for facts connected with their own pursuits.


Quote: An enormous mass of experience, both of homeopathic doctors and their patients, is invoked in favor of the efficacy of these remedies and doses. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

An enormous mass of experience, both of homeopathic doctors and their patients, is invoked in favor of the efficacy of these remedies and doses.


Quote: For I had often said that the best argument I knew for an immortal life was the existence of a man who deserved one as well as Child did. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

For I had often said that the best argument I knew for an immortal life was the existence of a man who deserved one as well as Child did.


Quote: The function of ignoring, of inattention, is as vital a factor in mental progress as the function of attention itself. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The function of ignoring, of inattention, is as vital a factor in mental progress as the function of attention itself.


Quote: We are stereotyped creatures, imitators and copiers of our past selves. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

We are stereotyped creatures, imitators and copiers of our past selves.


Quote: From all these facts there emerges a very simple abstract program for the teacher to follow in keeping the attention of the child: Begin with the line of his native interests, and offer him objects that have some immediate connection with these. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

From all these facts there emerges a very simple abstract program for the teacher to follow in keeping the attention of the child: Begin with the line of his native interests, and offer him objects that have some immediate connection with these.


Quote: The intellect, everywhere invasive, shows everywhere its shallowing effect. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The intellect, everywhere invasive, shows everywhere its shallowing effect.




Quote: Intellectualism' is the belief that our mind comes upon a world complete in itself, and has the duty of ascertaining its contents; but has no power of re-determining its character, for that is already given. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Intellectualism' is the belief that our mind comes upon a world complete in itself, and has the duty of ascertaining its contents; but has no power of re-determining its character, for that is already given.


Quote: The exercise of voluntary attention in the schoolroom must therefore be counted one of the most important points of training that take place there; and the first-rate teacher, by the keenness of the remoter interests which he is able to awaken, will provide abundant opportunities for its occurrence. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote: The exercise of voluntary attention in the schoolroom must therefore be counted one of the most important points of training that take place there; and the first-rate teacher, by the keenness of the remoter interests which he is able to awaken, will provide abundant opportunities for its occurrence.- black text on quotes background

The exercise of voluntary attention in the schoolroom must therefore be counted one of the most important points of training that take place there; and the first-rate teacher, by the keenness of the remoter interests which he is able to awaken, will provide abundant opportunities for its occurrence.




Quote: I know that you, ladies and gentlemen, have a philosophy, each and all of you, and that the most interesting and important thing about you is the way in which it determines the perspective in your several worlds. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

I know that you, ladies and gentlemen, have a philosophy, each and all of you, and that the most interesting and important thing about you is the way in which it determines the perspective in your several worlds.




Quote: The thinker philosophizes as the lover loves. Even were the consequences not only useless but harmful, he must obey his impulse. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The thinker philosophizes as the lover loves. Even were the consequences not only useless but harmful, he must obey his impulse.




Quote: The self-same atoms which, chaotically dispersed, made the nebula, now, jammed and temporarily caught in peculiar positions, form our brains; and the 'evolution' of brains, if understood, would be simply the account of how the atoms came to be so caught and jammed. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote; white text on black background

The self-same atoms which, chaotically dispersed, made the nebula, now, jammed and temporarily caught in peculiar positions, form our brains; and the 'evolution' of brains, if understood, would be simply the account of how the atoms came to be so caught and jammed.


Quote: We can act as if there were a God; feel as if we were free; consider Nature as if she were full of special designs; lay plans as if we were to be immortal; and we find then that these words do make a genuine difference in our moral life. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

We can act as if there were a God; feel as if we were free; consider Nature as if she were full of special designs; lay plans as if we were to be immortal; and we find then that these words do make a genuine difference in our moral life.


Quote: It seems the natural thing for us to listen whilst the Europeans talk. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

It seems the natural thing for us to listen whilst the Europeans talk.


Quote: Theory must mediate between all previous truths and certain new experiences. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Theory must mediate between all previous truths and certain new experiences.


Quote: In the acquisition of a new habit, or the leaving off of an old one, we must take care to launch ourselves with as strong and decided an initiative as possible. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

In the acquisition of a new habit, or the leaving off of an old one, we must take care to launch ourselves with as strong and decided an initiative as possible.


Quote: Science, like life, feeds on its own decay. New facts burst old rules; then newly divined conceptions bind old and new together into a reconciling law. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Science, like life, feeds on its own decay. New facts burst old rules; then newly divined conceptions bind old and new together into a reconciling law.


Quote: My thinking is first and last and always for the sake of my doing, and I can only do one thing at a time. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

My thinking is first and last and always for the sake of my doing, and I can only do one thing at a time.


Quote: I am the same personal being who in old times upon the Earth had those experiences. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

I am the same personal being who in old times upon the Earth had those experiences.


Quote: A little cooling down of animal excitability and instinct, a little loss of animal toughness, a little irritable weakness and descent of the pain-threshold, will bring the worm at the core of all our usual springs of delight into full view, and turn us into melancholy metaphysicians. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote: A little cooling down of animal excitability and instinct, a little loss of animal toughness, a little irritable weakness and descent of the pain-threshold, will bring the worm at the core of all our usual springs of delight into full view, and turn us into melancholy metaphysicians.- black text on quotes background

A little cooling down of animal excitability and instinct, a little loss of animal toughness, a little irritable weakness and descent of the pain-threshold, will bring the worm at the core of all our usual springs of delight into full view, and turn us into melancholy metaphysicians.


Quote: Sobriety diminishes, discriminates, and says no; drunkenness expands, unites, and says yes. Not through mere perversity do men run after it. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Sobriety diminishes, discriminates, and says no; drunkenness expands, unites, and says yes. Not through mere perversity do men run after it.


Quote: The pragmatist turns away from abstraction and insufficiency, from verbal solutions, from bad a priori reasons, from fixed principles, closed systems, and pretended absolutes and origins. He turns toward concreteness and adequacy, towards facts, towards action, and towards power. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote; white text on black background

The pragmatist turns away from abstraction and insufficiency, from verbal solutions, from bad a priori reasons, from fixed principles, closed systems, and pretended absolutes and origins. He turns toward concreteness and adequacy, towards facts, towards action, and towards power.


Quote: The philosophy which is so important in each of us is not a technical matter; it is our more or less dumb sense of what life honestly and deeply means. It is only partly got from books; it is our individual way of just seeing and feeling the total push and pressure of the cosmos. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote; white text on black background

The philosophy which is so important in each of us is not a technical matter; it is our more or less dumb sense of what life honestly and deeply means. It is only partly got from books; it is our individual way of just seeing and feeling the total push and pressure of the cosmos.


Quote: We have nothing to do but to receive, resting absolutely upon the merit, power, and love of our Redeemer. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

We have nothing to do but to receive, resting absolutely upon the merit, power, and love of our Redeemer.


Quote: The true is the name of whatever proves itself to be good in the way of belief, and good, too, for definite, assignable reasons. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The true is the name of whatever proves itself to be good in the way of belief, and good, too, for definite, assignable reasons.


Quote: As a rule reading fiction is as hard to me as trying to hit a target by hurling feathers at it. I need resistance to celebrate! by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

As a rule reading fiction is as hard to me as trying to hit a target by hurling feathers at it. I need resistance to celebrate!


Quote: I have often thought the best way to define a man's character would be to seek out the particular mental or moral attitude in which, when it comes upon him, he felt himself most deeply and intensely active and alive. At such moments there is a voice inside which speaks and says: This is the real me! by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote: I have often thought the best way to define a man's character would be to seek out the particular mental or moral attitude in which, when it comes upon him, he felt himself most deeply and intensely active and alive. At such moments there is a voice inside which speaks and says: This is the real me!- black text on quotes background

I have often thought the best way to define a man's character would be to seek out the particular mental or moral attitude in which, when it comes upon him, he felt himself most deeply and intensely active and alive. At such moments there is a voice inside which speaks and says: This is the real me!




Quote: The old question of whether there is design is idle. The real question is what is the world, whether or not it have a designer -- and that can be revealed only by the study of all nature's particulars. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The old question of whether there is design is idle. The real question is what is the world, whether or not it have a designer -- and that can be revealed only by the study of all nature's particulars.


Quote: Let sanguine healthy-mindedness do its best with its strange power of living in the moment and ignoring and forgetting, still the evil background is really there to be thought of, and the skull will grin in at the banquet. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Let sanguine healthy-mindedness do its best with its strange power of living in the moment and ignoring and forgetting, still the evil background is really there to be thought of, and the skull will grin in at the banquet.




Quote: Every individual existence goes out in a lonely spasm of helpless agony. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Every individual existence goes out in a lonely spasm of helpless agony.


Quote: The difference between the first and second-best things in art absolutely seems to escape verbal definition -- it is a matter of a hair, a shade, an inward quiver of some kind -- yet what miles away in the point of preciousness! by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The difference between the first and second-best things in art absolutely seems to escape verbal definition -- it is a matter of a hair, a shade, an inward quiver of some kind -- yet what miles away in the point of preciousness!


Quote: Most people live, whether physically, intellectually or morally, in a very restricted circle of their potential being. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Most people live, whether physically, intellectually or morally, in a very restricted circle of their potential being.


Quote: The mind, in short, works on the data it receives very much as the sculptor works on his block of stone. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The mind, in short, works on the data it receives very much as the sculptor works on his block of stone.


Quote: Man lives in only one small room of the enormous house of his consciousness. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Man lives in only one small room of the enormous house of his consciousness.




Quote: Great indeed is Fear; but it is not, as our military enthusiasts believe and try to make us believe, the only stimulus known for awakening the higher ranges of men's spiritual energy. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Great indeed is Fear; but it is not, as our military enthusiasts believe and try to make us believe, the only stimulus known for awakening the higher ranges of men's spiritual energy.


Quote: Spiritual energy flows in and produces effects, psychological or material, within the phenomenal world. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Spiritual energy flows in and produces effects, psychological or material, within the phenomenal world.


Quote: The general law is that no mental modification ever occurs which is not accompanied or followed by a bodily change. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The general law is that no mental modification ever occurs which is not accompanied or followed by a bodily change.


Quote: Plasticity, then, in the wide sense of the word, means the possession of a structure weak enough to yield to an influence, but strong enough not to yield all at once. Each relatively stable phase of equilibrium in such a structure is marked by what we may call a new set of habits. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote: Plasticity, then, in the wide sense of the word, means the possession of a structure weak enough to yield to an influence, but strong enough not to yield all at once. Each relatively stable phase of equilibrium in such a structure is marked by what we may call a new set of habits.- black text on quotes background

Plasticity, then, in the wide sense of the word, means the possession of a structure weak enough to yield to an influence, but strong enough not to yield all at once. Each relatively stable phase of equilibrium in such a structure is marked by what we may call a new set of habits.


Quote: If an unusual necessity forces us onward, a surprising thing occurs. The fatigue gets worse up to a certain point, when, gradually or suddenly, it passes away and we are fresher than before! by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

If an unusual necessity forces us onward, a surprising thing occurs. The fatigue gets worse up to a certain point, when, gradually or suddenly, it passes away and we are fresher than before!


Quote: We hear the words we have spoken, feel our own blow as we give it, or read in the bystander's eyes the success or failure of our conduct. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

We hear the words we have spoken, feel our own blow as we give it, or read in the bystander's eyes the success or failure of our conduct.


Quote: Once a decision is reached, stop worrying and start working. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Once a decision is reached, stop worrying and start working.


Quote: Ingenuity in meeting and pursuing the pupil, that tact for the concrete situation, though they are the alpha and omega of the teacher's art, are things to which psychology cannot help us in the least. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Ingenuity in meeting and pursuing the pupil, that tact for the concrete situation, though they are the alpha and omega of the teacher's art, are things to which psychology cannot help us in the least.


Quote: The amount of psychology which is necessary to all teachers need not be very great. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The amount of psychology which is necessary to all teachers need not be very great.


Quote: The worst thing that can happen to a good teacher is to get a bad conscience about her profession because she feels herself hopeless as a psychologist. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The worst thing that can happen to a good teacher is to get a bad conscience about her profession because she feels herself hopeless as a psychologist.


Quote: Psychology ought certainly to give the teacher radical help. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Psychology ought certainly to give the teacher radical help.


Quote: Truth lives, in fact, for the most part on a credit system. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Truth lives, in fact, for the most part on a credit system.


Quote: Both thought and feeling are determinants of conduct, and the same conduct may be determined either by feeling or by thought. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Both thought and feeling are determinants of conduct, and the same conduct may be determined either by feeling or by thought.


Quote: Men's activities are occupied into ways -- in grappling with external circumstances and in striving to set things at one in their own topsy-turvy mind. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Men's activities are occupied into ways -- in grappling with external circumstances and in striving to set things at one in their own topsy-turvy mind.


Quote: There are two lives, the natural and the spiritual, and we must lose the one before we can participate in the other. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

There are two lives, the natural and the spiritual, and we must lose the one before we can participate in the other.


Quote: No bell in us tolls to let us know for certain when truth is in our grasp. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

No bell in us tolls to let us know for certain when truth is in our grasp.


Quote: All the daily routine of life, our dressing and undressing, the coming and going from our work or carrying through of its various operations, is utterly without mental reference to pleasure and pain, except under rarely realized conditions. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

All the daily routine of life, our dressing and undressing, the coming and going from our work or carrying through of its various operations, is utterly without mental reference to pleasure and pain, except under rarely realized conditions.


Quote: From the Vedas we learn a practical art of surgery, medicine, music, house building under which mechanized art is included. They are encyclopedia of every aspect of life, culture, religion, science, ethics, law, cosmology and meteorology. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

From the Vedas we learn a practical art of surgery, medicine, music, house building under which mechanized art is included. They are encyclopedia of every aspect of life, culture, religion, science, ethics, law, cosmology and meteorology.


Quote: If things are ever to move upward, some one must take the first step, and assume the risk of it. No one who is not willing to try charity, to try non-resistance as the saint is always willing, can tell whether these methods will or will not succeed. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

If things are ever to move upward, some one must take the first step, and assume the risk of it. No one who is not willing to try charity, to try non-resistance as the saint is always willing, can tell whether these methods will or will not succeed.


Quote: Never suffer an exception to occur till the new habit is securely rooted in your life. Each lapse is like the letting fall of a ball of string which one is carefully winding up; a single slip undoes more than a great many turns will wind again. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Never suffer an exception to occur till the new habit is securely rooted in your life. Each lapse is like the letting fall of a ball of string which one is carefully winding up; a single slip undoes more than a great many turns will wind again.


Quote: If it works, it's true. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

If it works, it's true.


Quote: All the higher, more penetrating ideals are revolutionary. They present themselves far less in the guise of effects of past experience than in that of probable causes of future experience, factors to which the environment and the lessons it has so far taught us must learn to bend. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote: All the higher, more penetrating ideals are revolutionary. They present themselves far less in the guise of effects of past experience than in that of probable causes of future experience, factors to which the environment and the lessons it has so far taught us must learn to bend.- black text on quotes background

All the higher, more penetrating ideals are revolutionary. They present themselves far less in the guise of effects of past experience than in that of probable causes of future experience, factors to which the environment and the lessons it has so far taught us must learn to bend.


Quote: Resign your destiny to higher powers. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Resign your destiny to higher powers.






Quote: The first lecture in psychology that I ever heard was the first I ever gave. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The first lecture in psychology that I ever heard was the first I ever gave.




Quote: 'Facts' are the bounds of human knowledge, set for it, not by it. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

'Facts' are the bounds of human knowledge, set for it, not by it.




Quote: The first thing to learn in intercourse with others is non-interference with their own particular ways of being happy, provided those ways do not assume to interfere by violence with ours. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

The first thing to learn in intercourse with others is non-interference with their own particular ways of being happy, provided those ways do not assume to interfere by violence with ours.


Quote: Few people have definitely articulated philosophies of their own. But almost everyone has his own peculiar sense of a certain total character in the universe, and of the inadequacy of fully to match it to the peculiar systems that he knows. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Few people have definitely articulated philosophies of their own. But almost everyone has his own peculiar sense of a certain total character in the universe, and of the inadequacy of fully to match it to the peculiar systems that he knows.


Quote: Seek out that particular mental attribute which makes you feel most deeply and vitally alive. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Seek out that particular mental attribute which makes you feel most deeply and vitally alive.


Quote: Modern man ... has not ceased to be credulous ... the need to believe haunts him. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Modern man ... has not ceased to be credulous ... the need to believe haunts him.


Quote: I wished by treating Psychology like a natural science, to help her become one. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

I wished by treating Psychology like a natural science, to help her become one.




Quote: The bottom of being is left logically opaque to us, a datum in the strict sense of the word, something we simply come upon and find, and about which (if we wish to act) we should pause and wonder as little as possible. In this confession lies the lasting truth of empiricism. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote; white text on black background

The bottom of being is left logically opaque to us, a datum in the strict sense of the word, something we simply come upon and find, and about which (if we wish to act) we should pause and wonder as little as possible. In this confession lies the lasting truth of empiricism.


Quote: We must not just patch and tinker with life. We must keep renewing it. Embrace novelty and uniqueness. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

We must not just patch and tinker with life. We must keep renewing it. Embrace novelty and uniqueness.




Quote: Beyond the very extreme of fatigue and distress, we may find amounts of ease and power we never dreamed ourselves to own; sources of strength never taxed at all because we never push through the obstruction. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Beyond the very extreme of fatigue and distress, we may find amounts of ease and power we never dreamed ourselves to own; sources of strength never taxed at all because we never push through the obstruction.


Quote: Our acts of voluntary attending, as brief and fitful as they are, are nevertheless momentous and critical, determining us, as they do, to higher or lower destinies. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Our acts of voluntary attending, as brief and fitful as they are, are nevertheless momentous and critical, determining us, as they do, to higher or lower destinies.


Quote: These healers...my intellect has been unable to assimilate their theories....But their facts are patent and startling; and anything that interferes with the multiplication of such facts, and with our freest opportunity of observing and studying them, will, I believe, be a public calamity. by author William James overlaid on photo of William James quote: These healers...my intellect has been unable to assimilate their theories....But their facts are patent and startling; and anything that interferes with the multiplication of such facts, and with our freest opportunity of observing and studying them, will, I believe, be a public calamity.- black text on quotes background

These healers...my intellect has been unable to assimilate their theories....But their facts are patent and startling; and anything that interferes with the multiplication of such facts, and with our freest opportunity of observing and studying them, will, I believe, be a public calamity.




Quote: Modern war is so expensive that we feel trade to be a better avenue to plunder; but modern man inherits all the innate pugnacity and all the love of glory of his ancestors. by author William James overlaid on photo of photo of author William James with quote

Modern war is so expensive that we feel trade to be a better avenue to plunder; but modern man inherits all the innate pugnacity and all the love of glory of his ancestors.


Popular Curated Collections

Nature

Beauty

Cute

Be Positive

Flower

Self-Discovery

bell-hooks

Gratitude

Hope

Productivity

Creativity

 


Thank YOU for visiting -- we wish you a perfect day!