Voltaire Best Quotes

Aurelio Voltaire Hernández (born January 25, 1967, in Havana, Cuba) and professionally known by the mononym Voltaire, is a Cuban-American dark cabaret musician. His stage name is his given middle name, which he shares with the famous French Enlightenment writer François-Marie Arouet. Enjoy Voltaire’s best quotes below.

Voltaire
“God gave us the gift of life; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well.”
“Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.”
“Common sense is not so common.”
“The safest course is to do nothing against one’s conscience. With this secret, we can enjoy life and have no fear from death.”
“By appreciation, we make excellence in others our own property.”
“It is dangerous to be right in matters on which the established authorities are wrong.”
“It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.”
“What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other’s folly – that is the first law of nature.”
“To succeed in the world it is not enough to be stupid, you must also be well-mannered.”
“If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent Him.”
“Tears are the silent language of grief.”
“Is there anyone so wise as to learn by the experience of others?”
“The world embarrasses me, and I cannot dream that this watch exists and has no watchmaker.”
“Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game.”
“Love is a canvas furnished by nature and embroidered by imagination.”
“Every man is guilty of all the good he did not do.”
“Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too.”
“Faith consists in believing when it is beyond the power of reason to believe.”
“Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.”
“We must distinguish between speaking to deceive and being silent to be reserved.”
“Perfection is attained by slow degrees; it requires the hand of time.”
“The art of medicine consists in amusing the patient while nature cures the disease.”
“Injustice in the end produces independence.”
“We must cultivate our own garden. When man was put in the garden of Eden he was put there so that he should work, which proves that man was not born to rest.”
“The flowery style is not unsuitable to public speeches or addresses, which amount only to compliment. The lighter beauties are in their place when there is nothing more solid to say; but the flowery style ought to be banished from a pleading, a sermon, or a didactic work.”
“It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere.”
“Optimism is the madness of insisting that all is well when we are miserable.”
“Man is free at the moment he wishes to be.”
“It is better to risk saving a guilty man than to condemn an innocent one.”
“Superstition is to religion what astrology is to astronomy the mad daughter of a wise mother. These daughters have too long dominated the earth.”
“The progress of rivers to the ocean is not so rapid as that of man to error.”
“It is vain for the coward to flee; death follows close behind; it is only by defying it that the brave escape.”
“Originality is nothing but judicious imitation. The most original writers borrowed one from another.”
“Everything’s fine today, that is our illusion.”
“We never live; we are always in the expectation of living.”
“Let us read and let us dance – two amusements that will never do any harm to the world.”
“A witty saying proves nothing.”
“Prejudices are what fools use for reason.”
“We are all full of weakness and errors; let us mutually pardon each other our follies – it is the first law of nature.”
“The ancient Romans built their greatest masterpieces of architecture, their amphitheaters, for wild beasts to fight in.”
“To the living we owe respect, but to the dead we owe only the truth.”
“The best is the enemy of the good.”
“The husband who decides to surprise his wife is often very much surprised himself.”
“The mouth obeys poorly when the heart murmurs.”
“To believe in God is impossible not to believe in Him is absurd.”
“He who is not just is severe, he who is not wise is sad.”
“Life is thickly sown with thorns, and I know no other remedy than to pass quickly through them. The longer we dwell on our misfortunes, the greater is their power to harm us.”
“The little may contrast with the great, in painting, but cannot be said to be contrary to it. Oppositions of colors contrast; but there are also colors contrary to each other, that is, which produce an ill effect because they shock the eye when brought very near it.”
“It is not enough to conquer; one must learn to seduce.”
“I have lived eighty years of life and know nothing for it, but to be resigned and tell myself that flies are born to be eaten by spiders and man to be devoured by sorrow.”
“This self-love is the instrument of our preservation; it resembles the provision for the perpetuity of mankind: it is necessary, it is dear to us, it gives us pleasure, and we must conceal it.”
“Friendship is the marriage of the soul, and this marriage is liable to divorce.”
“All the reasonings of men are not worth one sentiment of women.”
“It is lamentable, that to be a good patriot one must become the enemy of the rest of mankind.”
“It is not love that should be depicted as blind, but self-love.”
“Men hate the individual whom they call avaricious only because nothing can be gained from him.”
“Weakness on both sides is, as we know, the motto of all quarrels.”
“What then do you call your soul? What idea have you of it? You cannot of yourselves, without revelation, admit the existence within you of anything but a power unknown to you of feeling and thinking.”
“Opinion has caused more trouble on this little earth than plagues or earthquakes.”
“What most persons consider as virtue, after the age of 40 is simply a loss of energy.”
“The secret of being a bore… is to tell everything.”
“Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers.”
“Illusion is the first of all pleasures.”
“The true triumph of reason is that it enables us to get along with those who do not possess it.”
“In general, the art of government consists of taking as much money as possible from one class of citizens to give to another.”
“Of all religions, the Christian should of course inspire the most tolerance, but until now Christians have been the most intolerant of all men.”
“I am very fond of truth, but not at all of martyrdom.”
“Every one goes astray, but the least imprudent are they who repent the soonest.”
“All men are born with a nose and five fingers, but no one is born with a knowledge of God.”
“It is said that the present is pregnant with the future.”
“One merit of poetry few persons will deny: it says more and in fewer words than prose.”
“If God created us in his own image, we have more than reciprocated.”
“He who has not the spirit of this age, has all the misery of it.”
“The ancients recommended us to sacrifice to the Graces, but Milton sacrificed to the Devil.”
“No problem can withstand the assault of sustained thinking.”
“He must be very ignorant for he answers every question he is asked.”
“History is only the register of crimes and misfortunes.”
“The best government is a benevolent tyranny tempered by an occasional assassination.”
“It is one of the superstitions of the human mind to have imagined that virginity could be a virtue.”
“I have never made but one prayer to God, a very short one: ‘O Lord make my enemies ridiculous.’ And God granted it.”
“Tyrants have always some slight shade of virtue; they support the laws before destroying them.”
“Nature has always had more force than education.”
“We have a natural right to make use of our pens as of our tongue, at our peril, risk and hazard.”
“It is not sufficient to see and to know the beauty of a work. We must feel and be affected by it.”
“To hold a pen is to be at war.”
“We are rarely proud when we are alone.”
“Better is the enemy of good.”
“The first step, my son, which one makes in the world, is the one on which depends the rest of our days.”
“In the case of news, we should always wait for the sacrament of confirmation.”
“Chance is a word void of sense; nothing can exist without a cause.”
“He was a great patriot, a humanitarian, a loyal friend; provided, of course, he really is dead.”
“He is a hard man who is only just, and a sad one who is only wise.”
“The public is a ferocious beast; one must either chain it or flee from it.”
“I know many books which have bored their readers, but I know of none which has done real evil.”
“Very learned women are to be found, in the same manner as female warriors; but they are seldom or ever inventors.”
“Love has features which pierce all hearts, he wears a bandage which conceals the faults of those beloved. He has wings, he comes quickly and flies away the same.”
“Anyone who seeks to destroy the passions instead of controlling them is trying to play the angel.”
“Meditation is the dissolution of thoughts in Eternal awareness or Pure consciousness without objectification, knowing without thinking, merging finitude in infinity.”
“The opportunity for doing mischief is found a hundred times a day, and of doing good once in a year.”
“I should like to lie at your feet and die in your arms.”
“The Holy Roman Empire is neither Holy, nor Roman, nor an Empire.”
“The truths of religion are never so well understood as by those who have lost the power of reason.”
“Froth at the top, dregs at bottom, but the middle excellent.”
“It is not known precisely where angels dwell whether in the air, the void, or the planets. It has not been God’s pleasure that we should be informed of their abode.”
“Religion was instituted to make us happy in this life and in the other. What must we do to be happy in the life to come? Be just.”
“Paradise was made for tender hearts; hell, for loveless hearts.”
“Use, do not abuse… neither abstinence nor excess ever renders man happy.”
“One great use of words is to hide our thoughts.”
“Nothing would be more tiresome than eating and drinking if God had not made them a pleasure as well as a necessity.”
“What a heavy burden is a name that has become too famous.”
“To the wicked, everything serves as pretext.”
“Clever tyrants are never punished.”
“Men use thought only as authority for their injustice, and employ speech only to conceal their thoughts.”
“Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.”
“Ice-cream is exquisite – what a pity it isn’t illegal.”
“We cannot wish for that we know not.”
“The instruction we find in books is like fire. We fetch it from our neighbours, kindle it at home, communicate it to others, and it becomes the property of all.”
“The superfluous, a very necessary thing.”
“The ear is the avenue to the heart.”
“When it is a question of money, everybody is of the same religion.”
“God is not on the side of the big battalions, but on the side of those who shoot best.”
“My life is a struggle.”
“When he to whom one speaks does not understand, and he who speaks himself does not understand, that is metaphysics.”
“The infinitely little have a pride infinitely great.”
“Governments need to have both shepherds and butchers.”
“There are truths which are not for all men, nor for all times.”
“The multitude of books is making us ignorant.”
“Time, which alone makes the reputation of men, ends by making their defects respectable.”
“We cannot always oblige; but we can always speak obligingly.”
“Divorce is probably of nearly the same date as marriage. I believe, however, that marriage is some weeks the more ancient.”
“Our country is that spot to which our heart is bound.”
“Very often, say what you will, a knave is only a fool.”
“Let us work without theorizing, tis the only way to make life endurable.”
“Satire lies about literary men while they live and eulogy lies about them when they die.”
“History should be written as philosophy.”
“All styles are good except the tiresome kind.”
“The sovereign is called a tyrant who knows no laws but his caprice.”
“It is the flash which appears, the thunderbolt will follow.”
“Society therefore is an ancient as the world.”
“Who serves his country well has no need of ancestors.”
“He shines in the second rank, who is eclipsed in the first.”
“In every author let us distinguish the man from his works.”
“Woe to the makers of literal translations, who by rendering every word weaken the meaning! It is indeed by so doing that we can say the letter kills and the spirit gives life.”
“Fear follows crime and is its punishment.”
“Indeed, history is nothing more than a tableau of crimes and misfortunes.”
“I die adoring God, loving my friends, not hating my enemies, and detesting superstition.”
“Wherever there is a settled society, religion is necessary; the laws cover manifest crimes, and religion covers secret crimes.”
“Let the punishments of criminals be useful. A hanged man is good for nothing; a man condemned to public works still serves the country, and is a living lesson.”
“Such is the feebleness of humanity, such is its perversity, that doubtless it is better for it to be subject to all possible superstitions, as long as they are not murderous, than to live without religion.”
“When men do not have healthy notions of the Divinity, false ideas supplant them, just as in bad times one uses counterfeit money when there is no good money.”

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