Omission Quotes (displaying: 1 - 10 of 25 quotes )
The soul of wit may become the very body of untruth. However elegant and memorable, brevity can never, in the nature of things, do justice to all the facts of a complex situations. On such a theme one can be brief only by omission and simplification. Omission and simplification help us to understand - but help is, in many cases, to understand the wrong thing; for our comprehension may be only of the abbreviator's neatly formulated notions, not of the vast, ramifying reality from which these notions have been so arbitrarily abstracted.
He pictures the evening he might have spent, snugly at home, fixing the food he has bought, then lying down on the couch beside the bookcase and reading himself slowly sleepy. At first glance this is an absolutely convincing and charming scene of domestic contentment. Only after a few instants does George notice the omission that makes it meaningless. What is left out of the picture is Jim, lying opposite him at the other end of the couch, also reading; the two of them absorbed in their books yet so completely aware of each other's presence.
I gave, at first, attention close; Then interest warm ensued; From interest, as improvement rose, Succeeded gratitude. 'Obedience was no effort soon, And labour was no pain; If tired, a word, a glance alone Would give me strength again. 'From others of the studious band Ere long he singled me, But only by more close demand And sterner urgency. 'The task he from another took, From me he did reject; He would no slight omission brook And suffer no defect. 'If my companions went astray, He scarce their wanderings blamed. If I but faltered in the way His anger fiercely flamed.
The test of man then is not, 'How have I believed?' but 'How have I loved?'. The final test of religion is not religiousness, but love: not what I have done, not what I have believed, not what I have achieved, but how I have discharged the common charities of life. Sins of commission in that awful indictment are not even referred to. By what we have not done, by sins of omission, we are judged. It could not be otherwise. For the withholding of love is the negation of the Spirit of Christ, the proof that we never knew Him, that for us He lived in vain. Pastor Henry Drummond, 1890
One's own free and unfettered volition, one's own caprice, however wild, one's own fancy, inflamed sometimes to the point of madness - that is the one best and greatest good, which is never taken into consideration because it cannot fit into any classification and the omission of which sends all systems and theories to the devil.
The ethics of reverence for life makes no distinction between higher and lower, more precious and less precious lives. It has good reasons for this omission. For what are we doing, when we establish hard and fast gradations in value between living organisms, but judging them in relation to ourselves, by whether they seem to stand closer to us or farther from us. This is a wholly subjective standard. How can we know what importance other living organisms have in themselves and in terms of the universe?
But each one of us is guilty insofar as he remained inactive. The guilt of passivity is different. Impotence excuses; no moral law demands a spectacular death. Plato already deemed it a matter of course to go into hiding in desperate times of calamity, and to survive. But passivity knows itself morally guilty of every failure, every neglect to act whenever possible, to shield the imperiled, to relieve wrong, to countervail. Impotent submission always left a margin of activity which, though not without risk, could still be cautiously effective. Its anxious omission weighs upon the individual as moral guilt. Blindness for the misfortune of others, lack of imagination of the heart, inner differences toward the witnessed evil--that is moral guilt.