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Intellect distinguishes between the possible and the impossible; reason distinguishes between the sensible and the senseless. Even the possible can be senseless. ~~ Max Born

A new questions has arisen in man's mind, the question, namely, whether life is worth living ... No sensible answer can be given to the question ... because the question does not make any sense. ~~ Erich Fromm

I sit here all day trying to persuade people to do the things they ought to have sense enough to do without my persuading them. That's all the powers of the President amount to. ~~ Harry S Truman

I do not feel obliged to believe that that same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forego their use. ~~ Galileo Galilei

I believe there is yet a spirit of resistance in this country, which will not submit to be oppressed; but I am sure there is a fund of good sense in this country, which cannot be deceived. ~~ The Letters of Junius

Not a hundredth part of the thoughts in my head have ever been or ever will be spoken or written -- as long as I keep my senses, at least. ~~ Jane Welsh Carlyle

Science is a first-rate piece of furniture for a man's upper chamber, if he has common sense on the ground floor. ~~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

The essence of a general's job is to assist in developing a clear sense of purpose ... to keep the junk from getting in the way of important things. ~~ Lieutenant General Walter F. Ulmer

A man said to the universe:
"Sir, I exist!"
"However," replied the universe
"The fact has not created in me
A sense of obligation." ~~ Stephen Crane

I'm tired of all this nonsense about beauty being only skin deep. That's deep enough. What do you want -- an adorable pancreas? ~~ Jean Kerr

Talk sense to a fool and he calls you foolish. ~~ Euripides

Undergraduates owe their happiness chiefly to the fact that they are no longer at school ... The nonsense which was knocked out of them at school is all gently put back at Oxford or Cambridge. ~~ Sir Max Beerbohm

Whenever you commend, add your reasons for doing so; it is this which distinguishes the approbation of a man of sense from the flattery of sycophants and admiration of fools. ~~ Sir Richard Steele

Take care of the sense and the sounds will take care of themselves. ~~ Lewis Carroll (See "Said Who")

Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen. ~~ Albert Einstein

A sense of duty is useful in work, but offensive in personal relations. People wish to be liked, not to be endured with patient resignation. ~~ Bertrand Russell

Do you think the things people make fools of themselves about are any less real and true than the things they behave sensibly about? They are more true: they are the only things that are true. ~~ George Bernard Shaw

You are so afraid of losing your moral sense that you are not willing to take it through anything more dangerous than a mud puddle. ~~ Gertrude Stein

Always begin anew with the day, just as nature does; it is one of the sensible things that nature does. ~~ George E. Woodberry

'Tis the privilege of friendship to talk nonsense, and have her nonsense respected. ~~ Charles Lamb

Great men of action ... never mind on occasion being ridiculous; in a sense it is part of their job, and at times they all are. A prophet or an achiever must never mind an occasional absurdity, it is an occupational risk. ~~ Oswald Mosley

Poetry is certainly something more than good sense, but it must be good sense at all events; just as a palace is more than a house, but it must be a house, at least. ~~ Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Good sense is of all things in the world the most equally distributed, for everybody thinks he is so well supplied with it, that even those most difficult to please in all other matters never desire more of it than they already possess. ~~ Rene Descartes

The biggest fool may come out with a bit of sense when you least expect it. ~~ Eden Phillpotts

It takes ten pounds of common sense to carry one pound of learning. ~~ Persian proverb

Pointing out the comic elements of a situation can bring a sense of proportion and perspective to what might otherwise seem an overwhelming problem. ~~ Harvey Mindess

Forgive me my nonsense as I also forgive the nonsense of those who think they talk sense. ~~ Robert Frost

When you see yourself in proportion -- as you're bound to do when you get some sense -- then you see how much greater what is real is than anything you can put down. ~~ Eudora Welty

I express many absurd opinions, but I am not the first man to do it; American freedom consists largely in talking nonsense. ~~ Edgar Watson Howe

I was raised to sense what someone wanted me to be and be that kind of person. It took me a long time not to judge myself through someone else's eyes. ~~ Sally Field

It is inaccurate to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for any public office. ~~ H. L. Mencken

Making duplicate copies and computer printouts of things no one wanted even one of in the first place is giving America a new sense of purpose. ~~ Andy Rooney

Common sense could prevent most divorces; also a lot of marriages. ~~ Joe Moore

A sense of curiosity is nature's original school of education. ~~ Smiley Blanton

It's a good thing to have all the props pulled out from under us occasionally. It gives us some sense of what is rock under our feet, and what is sand. ~~ Madeleine L'Engle

Inner peace and outer peace are synonymous in the sense that without one, the other wouldn't happen. ~~ Yoko Ono

Neurotic means he is not as sensible as I am, and psychotic means he's even worse than my brother-in-law. ~~ Karl Menninger

Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense. ~~ Gertrude Stein

Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other. ~~ Ronald Reagan

No man can be a pure specialist without being in the strict sense an idiot. ~~ George Bernard Shaw

There is no explanation for evil. It must be looked upon as a necessary part of the order of the universe. To ignore it is childish; to bewail it senseless. ~~ W. Somerset Maugham

Europe has what we do not have yet, a sense of the mysterious and inexorable limits of life, a sense, in a word, of tragedy. And we have what they sorely need: a sense of life's possibilities. ~~ James Baldwin

Man's most valuable trait is a judicious sense of what not to believe. ~~ Euripides

The greatest gift a parent can give a child is unconditional love. As a child wanders and strays, finding his bearings, he needs a sense of absolute love from a parent. There's nothing wrong with tough love, as long as the love is unconditional. ~~ George Bush

Any fool can tell the truth, but it requires a man of some sense to know how to tell a lie well. ~~ Samuel Butler

Let us talk sense to the American people. Let us tell them the truth, that there are no gains without pains. ~~ Adlai Stevenson

[Richard] Nixon lied to gain love, to shore up his grandiose fantasies, to bolster his ever-wavering sense of identity. He lied in attack, hoping to win ... and always he lied, and this most aggressively, to deny that he lied. ~~ Fawn Brodie

I am often troubled as I try hard here to create a new sense of common purpose ... that sometimes we forget that we are all in this because we are seeking a good that helps all Americans. ~~ William Jefferson Clinton

Nothing is capable of being well set to music that is not nonsense. ~~ Joseph Addison

I imagine one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, they will be forced to deal with pain. ~~ James Baldwin

If the English language made any sense, lackadaisical would have something to do with a shortage of flowers. ~~ Doug Larson

The difference between reality and fiction? Fiction has to make sense. ~~ Tom Clancy

Hope is not the conviction that something will turn out well but the certainty that something makes sense, regardless of how it turns out. ~~ Vaclav Havel

Never give in! Never give in! Never, never, never. Never -- in anything great or small, large or petty -- never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense. ~~ Winston Churchill

It would be nice if something made sense for a change. ~~ Alice in Wonderland [film, 1951]

The people sensible enough to give good advice are usually sensible enough to give none. ~~ Eden Phillpotts

Our language has wisely sensed the two sides of being alone. It has created the word loneliness to express the pain of being alone. And it has created the word solitude to express the glory of being alone. ~~ Paul Tillich

I have known a vast quantity of nonsense talked about bad men not looking you in the face. Don't trust that conventional idea. Dishonesty will stare honestly out of countenance any day of the week, if there is anything to get got by it. ~~ Charles Dickens

The only man who behaves sensibly is my tailor; he takes my measure anew every time he sees me, whilst all the rest go on with their old measurements, and expect them to fit me. ~~ George Bernard Shaw

Be virtuous and you'll be happy? Nonsense! Be happy and you'll begin to be virtuous. ~~ James Gould Cozzens

Common sense and education are highly compatible; in fact, neither is worth much without the other. ~~ Donald G. Smith

I'm perplexed when people adopt the modish abbreviation Ms., which doesn't abbreviate anything except common sense. ~~ Dick Cavett

No one is exempt from talking nonsense; the mistake is to do it solemnly. ~~ Michel de Montaigne

Nature abhors a vacuum and fills empty heads with nonsense. ~~ Unattributed

Good nonsense is good sense in disguise. ~~ Josh Billings

The government of the United States is in no sense founded upon the Christian religion. The United States is not a Christian nation any more than it is a Jewish or Mohammedan nation. ~~ Treaty with Tripoli

Literature is my Utopia. Here I am not disenfranchised. No barrier of the sense shuts me out from the sweet, gracious discourse of my book friends. They talk to me without embarrassment or awkwardness. ~~ Helen Keller

Art for art's sake makes no more sense than gin for gin's sake. ~~ W. Somerset Maugham

[To Robert Fulton:] What, sir, would you make a ship sail against the wind and currents by lighting a bonfire under her deck? I pray you excuse me. I have no time to listen to such nonsense. ~~ Napolean

You know, sometimes, when they say you're ahead of your time, it's just a polite way of saying you have a real bad sense of timing. ~~ George McGovern

Popular opinions, on subjects not palpable to sense, are often true, but seldom or never the whole truth. ~~ John Stuart Mill

Much as we might wish to believe otherwise, universal love and the welfare of the species as a whole are concepts which simply do not make evolutionary sense. ~~ Richard Dawkins

To each other, we were as normal and nice as the smell of bread. We were just a family. In a family, even exaggerations make perfect sense. ~~ John Irving

A critic is a bunch of biases held loosely together by a sense of taste. ~~ Whitney Balliett

Common sense often makes good law. ~~ William O. Douglas

Ours is a precarious language, as every writer knows, in which the merest shadow line often separates affirmation from negation, sense from nonsense, and one sex from the other. ~~ James Thurber

To bemoan the messiness of politics is not just a folly; it betrays a dangerous impatience with basic human realities. It is like becoming disturbed that people do not fall in love sensibly -- and so deciding to computerize the problem. ~~ Theodore Roszak

Education, which was at first made universal in order that all might be able to read and write, has been found capable of serving quite other purposes. By instilling nonsense it unifies populations and generates collective enthusiasm. ~~ Bertrand Russell

What is desperately needed ... is the skepticism and the sense of history that a liberal arts education provides. ~~ Felix G. Rohatyn

I claim the right to contradict myself. I don't want to deprive myself of the right to talk nonsense, and I ask humbly to be allowed to be wrong sometimes. ~~ Federico Fellini

The question of whether it's God's green earth is not at center stage, except in the sense that if so, one is reminded with some regularity that He may be dying. ~~ Edward Hoagland

Whatever it is that the government does, sensible Americans would prefer that the government do it to somebody else. This is the idea behind foreign policy. ~~ P. J. O'Rourke

It is not the literal past that rules us, save, possibly, in a biological sense. It is images of the past. ~~ George Steiner

Most people tire of a lecture in 10 minutes; clever people can do it in 5. Sensible people never go to lectures at all. ~~ Stephen Leacock

[Of ex-President Eisenhower at the Republican convention of 1964:] Reading a speech with his usual sense of discovery. ~~ Gore Vidal

The feeling of inferiority rules the mental life and can be clearly recognized as the sense of incompleteness and unfulfillment ... both of individuals and of humanity. ~~ Alfred Adler

The people people have for friends
You common sense appall
But the people people marry
Are the queerest folk of all. ~~ Charlotte Perkins Gilman

We rarely think that people have good sense unless they agree with us. ~~ La Rochefoucauld

Fear and ignorance about AIDS can so weaken people's senses as to make them susceptible to an equally virulent threat: bigotry. ~~ Editorial, New York Times

Speaking generally, punishment hardens and numbs, it produces obstinacy, it sharpens the sense of alienation and strengthens the power of resistance. ~~ Nietzsche

Man has such a predilection for systems and abstract deductions that he is ready to distort the truth intentionally, he is ready to deny the evidence of his senses only to justify his logic. ~~ Fyodor Dostoevsky

The opinions we hold of one another, our relations with friends and kinfolk are in no sense permanent, save in appearance, but are as eternally fluid as the sea itself. ~~ Marcel Proust

The pendulum of the mind oscillates between sense and nonsense, not between right and wrong. ~~ C. G. Jung

All credibility, all good conscience, all evidence of truth come only from the senses. ~~ Nietzsche

The sensibility of man to trifles, and his insensibility to great things, indicates a strange inversion. ~~ Pascal

There are people who think that everything one does with a serious face is sensible. ~~ Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

Potatoes are to food what sensible shoes are to fashion. ~~ Linda Wells

Experience is never limited, and it is never complete; it is an immense sensibility, a kind of huge spider web of the finest silken threads suspended in the chamber of consciousness, and catching every airborne particle in its tissue. ~~ Henry James

The heart may think it knows better: the senses know that absence blots people out. We really have no absent friends. ~~ Elizabeth Bowen

I have a fine sense of the ridiculous, but no sense of humor. ~~ Edward Albee

He [Harris] felt the loyalty we all feel to unhappiness -- the sense that that is where we really belong. ~~ Graham Greene

Words are like leaves; and where they most abound,
Much fruit of sense beneath is rarely found. ~~ Alexander Pope

It can't be Nature, for it is not sense. ~~ Charles Churchill

Nonsense is so good only because common sense is so limited. ~~ George Santayana

I never have a realistic sense of self. I either think everything I do is terrible and I'm the worst guy on the planet, or from time to time I'll think I'm the greatest gift to music and the coolest guy who ever lived, but that happens maybe an hour out of the week. Some days I'm more concerned with how my hair looks than what my guitar sounds like. ~~ Dave Navarro

As an atheist you have to rationalize things... Then you have to try and make some sort of sense out of your problems. And if you try and find you can't, you have no choice but to be good and scared -- but that's okay! ~~ Billy Joel

Knowing that everything's futile but still fighting, still raging against the dying of the light -- that's what motivates me all the time ... If you hold that sense of futility in your head for too long, it can begin to eat into you. You can still be aware of it but find a place for it where you can actually exist comfortably and enjoy things. ~~ Robert Smith

What's been great about the human race gives you a sense of how great you might get, how far you can reach. ~~ Jerry Garcia

Common sense isn't. ~~ Unattributed

Said Waldershare, "Sensible men are all of the same religion." "And pray what is that?" ... "Sensible men never tell." ~~ Benjamin Disraeli

Each new historical era mirrors itself in the picture and archive mythology of its past or of a past borrowed from other cultures. It tests its sense of identity, of regress or new achievement, against that past. ~~ George Steiner

Horse sense is what keeps horses from betting on people. ~~ Joe Moore

To appreciate nonsense requires a serious interest in life. ~~ Gelett Burgess

I look back on the way I was then, a young, stupid kid who committed that terrible crime. I want to talk to him. I want to try and talk some sense to him, tell him the way things are. But I can't. That kid's long gone and this old man is all that's left. I got to live with that. ~~ Shawshank Redemption [film, 1994]

Choose your friends by their character and your socks by their color. Choosing your socks by their character makes no sense, and choosing your friends by their color is unthinkable. ~~ Unattributed

There is nobody so irritating as somebody with less intelligence and more sense than we have. ~~ Don Herold

Logic is a wonderful invention. It is so wonderful, people often mistake it for reason. Reason, however, requires sense. Logic requires only consistency. ~~ Orania Papazoglou