Oliver Wendell Holmes Quotes on Mind (9 Quotes)


    The movements of exaltation which belong to genius are egotistic by their very nature. A calm, clear mind, not subject to the spasms and crises which are so often met with in creative or intensely perceptive natures, is the best basis for love or friendship. Observe, I am talking about minds. I won't say, the more intellect, the less capacity for loving for that would do wrong to the understanding and reason but on the other hand, that the brain runs away with the heart's best blood, which gives the world a few pages of wisdom or sentiment or poetry, instead of making one other heart happy, I have no question.

    The very minute a thought is threatened with publicity it seems to shrink towards mediocrity


    The mind, once expanded to the dimensions of larger ideas, never returns to its original size.

    I was just going to say, when I was interrupted, that one of the many ways of classifying minds is under the heads of arithmetical and algebraical intellects. All economical and practical wisdom is an extension of the following arithmetical formula 2 2 4. Every philosophical proposition has the more general character of the expression a b c. We are mere operatives, empirics, and egotists until we learn to think in letters instead of figures.


    The longing for certainty... is in every human mind. But certainty is generally illusion.


    One's mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions.

    If there is any principle of the Constitution that more imperatively calls for attachment than any other it is the principle of free thought, not free thought for those who agree with us but freedom for the thought that we hate.


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