Fanaticism Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 58 quotes )
A good working definition of fanaticism is that you are so convinced of your views and policies that you are sure that anyone who opposed them must be either stupid and decieved or have some ulterior motive. We are today a nation where almost everyone in the public eye displays fanaticism with every utterance.
Old friend, there are people—young and old—that I like, and people that I do not like. The former are always in short supply. I am turned off by humorless fanaticism, whether it's revolutionary mumbo-jumbo by a young one, or loud lessons from scripture by and old one. We are all comical, touching, slapstick animals, walking on our hind legs, trying to make it a noble journey from womb to tomb, and the people who can't see it all that way bore hell out of me. —Travis McGee
Every isolated passion, is, in isolation, insane; sanity may be defined as synthesis of insanities. Every dominant passion generates a dominant fear, the fear of its non-fulfillment. Every dominant fear generates a nightmare, sometimes in form of explicit and conscious fanaticism, sometimes in paralyzing timidity, sometimes in an unconscious or subconscious terror which finds expression only in dreams. The man who wishes to preserve sanity in a dangerous world should summon in his own mind a parliament of fears, in which each in turn is voted absurd by all the others.
I understand in retrospect that this was my first introduction to a conflict that dominates all our lives: the endless, irreconcilable conflict between the values of Athens and Jerusalem. On the one hand, very approximately, is the world not of hedonism but of tolerance of the recognition that sex and love have their ironic and perverse dimensions. On the other is the stone-faced demand for continence, sacrifice, and conformity, and the devising of ever-crueler punishments for deviance, all invoked as if this very fanaticism did not give its whole game away.
The one great advantage of Bhakti is that it is the easiest and most natural way to reach the great divine end in view; it's great disadvantage is that in its lower forms it oftentimes degenerates into hideous fanaticism. The fanatical crew in Hinduism, Mohammedanism, or Christianity, have always been almost exclusively recruited from these worshippers [sic] on the lower planes of Bhakti. That singleness of attachment (Nishth) to a loved object, without which no genuine love can grow, is very often also the cause of the denunciation of everything else. All the weak and undeveloped minds in every religion or country have only one way of loving their own ideal, i. e., by hating every other ideal. Herein is the explanation of why the same man who is so lovingly attached to his own ideal of God, so devoted to his own ideal of religion, becomes a howling fanatic as soon as he sees or hears anything of any other ideal.
sense of futility that comes from doing anything merely to prove to yourself that you can do it: having a child, climbing a mountain, making some sexual conquest, committing suicide.The marathon is a form of demonstrative suicide, suicide as advertising: it is running to show you are capable of getting every last drop of energy out of yourself, to prove i? to prove what? That you are capable of finishing. Graffiti carry the same message. They simply say: ?m so-and-so and I exist! They are free publicity for existence.Do we continually have to prove to ourselves that we exist? A strange sign of weakness, harbinger of a new fanaticism for a faceless performance, endlessly self-evident.
The way of even the most justifiable revolution is prepared by personal impulses disguised into creeds. The Professor's indignation found in itself a final cause that absolued him from the sin of turning to destruction as the agent of his ambition. To destroy public faith in legality was the imperfect formula of his pedantic fanaticism; but the subconscious conviction that the framework of an established social order cannot be effectually shattered except by some form of collective or individual violence was precise and correct. He was a moral agent -- that was settled in his mind. By exercising his agency with ruthless defiance he procurred for himself the appearances of power and personal prestige, that was undeniable to his vengeful bitterness. It pacified its unrest; and in their own way the most ardent of revolutionaries are perhaps doing no more but seeking for peace in common with the rest of mankind -- the peace of soothed vanity, of satisfied appetites, or perhaps of appeased conscience.
The work of the philosophical policeman," replied the man in blue, "is at once bolder and more subtle than that of the ordinary detective. The ordinary detective goes to pot-houses to arrest thieves; we go to artistic tea-parties to detect pessimists. The ordinary detective discovers from a ledger or a diary that a crime has been committed. We discover from a book of sonnets that a crime will be committed. We have to trace the origin of those dreadful thoughts that drive men on at last to intellectual fanaticism and intellectual crime. We were only just in time to prevent the assassination at Hartlepool, and that was entirely due to the fact that our Mr. Wilks (a smart young fellow) thoroughly understood a triolet.
Are we not all of us fanatics? I say only what you of the U.S.A. pretend you do not know. Attachments are of great seriousness. Choose your attachments carefully. Choose your temple of fanaticism with great care. What you wish to sing of as tragic love is an attachment not carefully chosen. Die for one person? This is a craziness. Persons change, leave, die, become ill. They leave, lie, go mad, have sickness, betray you, die. Your nation outlives you. A cause outlives you.
I worry that, especially as the Millennium edges nearer, pseudoscience and superstition will seem year by year more tempting, the siren song of unreason more sonorous and attractive. Where have we heard it before? Whenever our ethnic or national prejudices are aroused, in times of scarcity, during challenges to national self-esteem or nerve, when we agonize about our diminished cosmic place and purpose, or when fanaticism is bubbling up around us - then, habits of thought familiar from ages past reach for the controls. The candle flame gutters. Its little pool of light trembles. Darkness gathers. The demons begin to stir.
Everybody was talking about the religious man who committed suicide. While no one in the monastery approved of the man's action, some say they admired his faith. Faith?" said the Master. He had the courage of his convictions, didn't he?"That was fanaticism, not faith. Faith demands a greater courage still: to reexamine one's convictions and reject them if they do not fit the facts.
Recalling some of the most spectacular horrors of history -- the burning of heretics and witches at the stake, the wholesale massacre of "heathens," and other no less repulsive manifestations of Christian civilization in Europe and elsewhere -- modern man is filled with pride in the "progress" accomplished, in one line at least, since the end of the dark ages of religious fanaticism.
Enough of invisibility, silence, timidity, defensiveness, guilt! An invisible, silenced man was an empty space into which others could pour their prejudices, their agendas, their wrath. The fight against fanaticism needed visible faces, audible voices. He would be quiet no longer. He would try to become a loud and visible man.