Here are some quotes from the brilliant Catholic, English writer of the twentieth century, G.K.Chesterton. I love the way he was able to get across somewhat complicated ideas in only a sentence or two.
“Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions.” – ILN, 4/19/30
“Progress should mean that we are always changing the world to fit the vision, instead we are always changing the vision.” – Orthodoxy, 1908
“The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.” – Illustrated London News, 1/14/11
“Properly speaking, the only rational wars are the religious wars. If a man may be asked to die for anything, it may well be for his whole reason for living, his whole conception of the object of life and death.” – ILN, 9/26/31
“When a politician is in opposition he is an expert on the means to some end; and when he is in office he is an expert on the obstacles to it.” – ILN, 4/6/18
“Love means loving the unlovable – or it is no virtue at all.” – Heretics, 1905
“All science, even the divine science, is a sublime detective story. Only it is not set to detect why a man is dead; but the darker secret of why he is alive.” – The Thing, CW. III 191
“Courage is almost a contradiction in terms. It means a strong desire to live taking the form of a readiness to die.” – Orthodoxy, 1908
“Without authority there is no liberty. Freedom is doomed to destruction at every turn, unless there is a recognized right to freedom. And if there are rights, there is an authority to which we appeal for them.” – G.K.’s Weekly, April 28, 1928
“Everybody has always known about birth-control, even if it took the wild and unthinkable form of self-control.” – ILN, 6/30/28
“It is the simple truth that man does differ from the brutes in kind and not in degree; and proof of it is here; that it sounds like a truism to say that the most primitive man drew a picture of a monkey, and that it sounds like a joke to say that the most intelligent monkey drew a picture of a man. Something of a division and disproportion has appeared; and it is unique. Art is the signature of man.” – The Everlasting Man, 1925
“A great man is not a man so strong that he feels less than other men; he is a man so strong that he feels more.” – Heretics, 1905
“We do not really want a religion that is right where we are right. We want a religion that is right where we are wrong. We do not want, as the newspapers say, a church that will move with the world. We want a church that will move the world.” – The Catholic Church and Conversion, 1926
“A dead thing can go with the stream, but only a living thing can go against it.” – The Everlasting Man, 1925
For more Chesterton quotes visit the American Chesterton Society website.
Haven’t heard of Chesterton before? Read; Who is this guy and why haven’t I heard of him?