Understandable Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 52 quotes )
She took kisses like so many coats of paint […] how long and how vainly I searched for excuses which might make her amorality if not palatable at lest understandable. I realize now the time I wasted in this way; instead of enjoying her and turning aside from these preoccupations with the thought, ‘She is untrustworthy as she is beautiful. She takes love as plants do water, lightly, thoughtlessly.
I think no more than a week after I started writing I ran into the first block. It's hard to describe it in a way that will be understandable to anyone who is not a neurotic. I will try. All my life I have been haunted by the obsession that to desire a thing or to love a thing intensely is to place yourself in a vulnerable position, to be a possible, if not a probable, loser of what you most want. Let's leave it like that. That block has always been there and always will be, and my chance of getting, or achieving, anything that I long for will always be gravely reduced by the interminable existence of that block.
The question was whether an ape which was being used to develop a poliomyelitis serum, and for this reason punctured again and again, would ever be able to grasp the meaning of its suffering. Unanimously, the group replied that of course it would not; with its limited intelligence, it could not enter into the world of man, i. e., the only world in which the meaning of its suffering would be understandable. Then I pushed forward with the following question: ‘And what about man? Are you sure that the the human world is a terminal point in the evolution of the cosmos? Is it not conceivable that there is still another dimension, a world beyond man’s world; a world in which the question of an ultimate meaning of human suffering would find an answer?
Survival, with honor, that outmoded and all-important word, is as difficult as ever and as all-important to a writer. Those who do not last are always more beloved since no one has to see them in their long, dull, unrelenting, no-quarter-given-and-no-quarter-received, fights that they make to do something as they believe it should be done before they die. Those who die or quit early and easy and with every good reason are preferred because they are understandable and human. Failure and well-disguised cowardice are more human and more beloved.
And wasn't it this bright boy you selected for beating and tortures after hours? Of course it was. We must all be alike. Not everyone born free and equal, as the Constitution says, but everyone made equal. Each man the image of every other; then all are happy, for their are no mountains to make them cower, to judge themselves against. So! A book is a loaded gun in the house next door. Burn it. Take the shot from the weapon. Breach man's mind. Who knows who might be the target of the well-read man? Me? I won't stomach them for a minute. And so when houses were finally fireproofed completely, all over the world (you were correct in your assumption the other night) there was no longer need of firemen for the old purposes. They were given the new job, as custodians of our peace of mind, the focus of our understandable and rightful dread of being inferior: official censors, judges and executors. That's you, Montag, and that's me.
The question is very understandable, but no one has found a satisfactory answer to it so far. Yes, why do they make still more gigantic planes, still heavier bombs and, at the same time, prefabricated houses for reconstruction? Why should millions be spent daily on the war and yet there's not a penny available for medical services, artists, or for poor people? Why do some people have to starve, while there are surpluses rotting in other parts of the world? Oh, why are people so crazy?
I have to know you'll be happy; have what you want, what you can live with. I want forever from you."All right." Shelby lifted her hands to his wrists, holding them a moment before she backed away. "I considered the possibilties," she began. "I thought through all the ifs and the maybes. I didn't like all of them, but the one I hated the most was life without you. You're not going to play Parcheesi without me, MacGregor."His brow lifted. "I'm not?"No." She brushed at her bangs with another unsteady laugh. "Marry me, Alan. I won't agree with all your policies, but I'll try to be tactful in print-some of the time. I won't head any committees, and I'll only go to luncheons if there's no way out, but my own career's an understandable excuse for that. I won't give conventional parties, but I'll give interesting ones If you're willing to take the risk of setting me loose on world politics, who am I to argue?"He hadn't thought he could love her any more than he already did. He'd been wrong.
It's interesting that penny-pinching is an accepted defense for toxic food habits, when frugality so rarely rules other consumer domains. The majority of Americans buy bottled drinking water, for example, even though water runs from the faucets at home for a fraction of the cost, and government quality standards are stricter for tap water than for bottled. At any income level, we can be relied upon for categorically unnecessary purchases: portable-earplug music instead of the radio; extra-fast Internet for leisure use; heavy vehicles to transport light loads; name-brand clothing instead of plainer gear. "Economizing," as applied to clothing, generally means looking for discount name brands instead of wearing last year's clothes again. The dread of rearing unfashionable children is understandable. But as a priority, "makes me look cool" has passed up "keeps arteries functional" and left the kids huffing and puffing (fashionably) in the dust.
The problem with the Internet startup craze isn’t that too many people are starting companies; it’s that too many people aren’t sticking with it. That’s somewhat understandable, because there are many moments that are filled with despair and agony, when you have to fire people and cancel things and deal with very difficult situations. That’s when you find out who you are and what your values are. So when these people sell out, even though they get fabulously rich, they’re gypping themselves out of one of the potentially most rewarding experiences of their unfolding lives. Without it, they may never know their values or how to keep their newfound wealth in perspective.
Up to now, most scientists have been too occupied with the development of new theories that describe what the universe is to ask the question why. On the other hand, the people whose business it is to ask why, the philosophers, have not been able to keep up with the advance of scientific theories....However, if we do discover a complete theory, it should in time be understandable in broad principle by everyone, not just a few scientists. Then we shall all, philosophers, scientists, and just ordinary people, be able to take part in the discussion of the question of why it is that we and the universe exist. If we find the answer to that, it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason--for then we would know the mind of God.
This time it is not a simple, understandable war, within the same culture. This time it is an assault of the animal world upon the house of the human being. I don’t know what you saw in Africa and Italy, but I know what I saw in Russia and Poland. We made a cemetery a thousand miles long and a thousand miles wide. Men, women, children, Poles, Russians, Jews, it made no difference. It could not be compared to any human action. It could be compared to a weasel in a henhouse. It was as though we felt that if we left anything alive in the East, it would one day bear witness against us and condemn us. And, now, we have made the final mistake. We are losing the war
To every administrator, in peaceful, unstormy times, it seems that the entire population entrusted to him moves only by his efforts, and in this consciousness of his necessity every administrator finds the chief rewards for his labors and efforts. It is understandable that, as long as the historical sea is calm, it must seem to the ruler-administrator in his frail little bark, resting his pole against the ship of the people and moving along with it, that his efforts are moving the ship. But once a storm arises, the sea churns up, and the ship begins to move my itself, and then the delusion is no longer possible. The ship follows its own enormous, independent course, the pole does not reach the moving ship, and the ruler suddenly, from his position of power, from being a source of strength, becomes an insignificant, useless, and feeble human being.
Humans? who enslave, castrate, experiment on, and fillet other animals? have had an understandable penchant for pretending animals do not feel pain. A sharp distinction between humans and 'animals' is essential if we are to bend them to our will, make them work for us, wear them, eat them? without any disquieting tinges of guilt or regret. It is unseemly of us, who often behave so unfeelingly toward other animals, to contend that only humans can suffer. The behavior of other animals renders such pretensions specious. They are just too much like us.