Subtle Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 258 quotes )
But in the 17th century Russian Orthodoxy was gravely weakened by an internal schism. In the 18th, the country was shaken by Peter's forcibly imposed transformations, which favored the economy, the state, and the military at the expense of the religious spirit and national life. And along with this lopsided Petrine enlightenment, Russia felt the first whiff of secularism; its subtle poisons permeated the educated classes in the course of the 19th century and opened the path to Marxism. By the time of the Revolution, faith had virtually disappeared in Russian educated circles; and amongst the uneducated, its health was threatened.
I did pick up a few tolerably ripe and breezy expressions out in France. All through my military career there was something about me - some subtle magnetism, don't you know, and that sort of thing - that seemed to make Colonels and blighters of that sort rather inventive. I sort of inspired them, don't you know.
But love, first learnd in a lady's eyes, Lives not alone immurd in the brain, But, with the motion of all elements, Courses as swift as thought in every power, And gives to every power a double power, Above their functions and their offices. It adds a precious seeing to the eye; A lover's eyes will gaze an eagle blind; A lover's ears will hear the lowest sound, When the suspicious head of theft is stopped: Love's feeling is more soft and sensible Than are the tender horns of cockled snails: Love's tongue proves dainty Baccus gross in taste. For valour, is not love a Hercules, Still climbing trees in the Hesperides? Subtle as Sphinx; as sweet and musical As bright Apollo's lute, strung with his hair; And when Love speaks, the voice of all the gods Makes heaven drowsy with the harmony. Never durst poet touch a pen to write Until his ink were tempered with Love's sighs.
The spectacular landscape circling the fortress supplies an essential backdrop, inspiring dreamers to wander its ruins for the sake of it; North American tourists, bound down by their practical world view, are able to place those members of the disintegrating tribes they may have seen in their travels among these once-living walls, unaware of the moral distance separating them, since only the semi-indigenous spirit of the South American can grasp the subtle differences.
Not that he [Uzbek] rejected Mendel's proposals or rebelled against his decisions; but he exercised a subtle, passive abrasion against every active thrust: like dust in a watch, Mendel thought to himself. He's got dust in him, even though he is young. It's stupid to say the young are strong. You understand many things better at thirty than at twenty and you can also bear them better.
Always this same morbid interest in other people and their doings, their privacies, their dirty linen, always this air of alertness for personal happenings, personalities, personalities, personalities. Always this subtle criticism and appraisal of other people, this analysis of other people’s motives. If anatomy presupposes a corpse, then psychology presupposes a world of corpses. Personalities, which means personal criticism and analysis, presuppose a whole world laboratory of human psyches waiting to be vivisected. If you cut a thing up, of course it will smell. Hence, nothing raises such an infernal stink, at last, as human psychology.
Some false representations contravene the law; some do not. The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business, and, besides, could not be done. The line between honesty and dishonesty is a narrow, shifting one and usually lets those get by that are the most subtle and already have more than they can use.
Never an illness, nor the absenceof grandeur, no, nothing is able to kill the best in us, that kindness, dear sir, we are afflicted with: beautiful is the flower of man, his conduct, and every door opens on the beautiful truthand never hides treacherous whispers. I always gained something from making myself better, better than I am, better than I was, that most subtle citation: to recover some lost petalof the sadness I inherited: to search once more for the light that singsinside of me, the unwavering light.
Contemplation in the age of Auschwitz and Dachau, Solovky and Karaganda is something darker and more fearsome than contemplation in the age of the Church Fathers. For that very reason, the urge to seek a path of spiritual light can be a subtle temptation to sin. It certainly is sin if it means a frank rejection of the burden of our age, an escape into unreality and spiritual illusion, so as not to share the misery of other men.
Try and penetrate with our limited means the secrets of nature and you will find that, behind all the descernible laws and connections, there remains something subtle, intangible and inexplicable. Veneration for this force beyond anything that we can comprehend is my religion. To that extent I am, in fact, religious.
He seemed to hasten the retreat of departing light by his very presence; the setting sun dipped sharply, as though fleeing before our nigger; a black mist emanated from him; a subtle and dismal influence; a something cold and gloomy that floated out and settled on all the faces like a mourning veil. The circle broke up. The joy of laughter died on stiffened lips.
... occasionally I like carrying raw steel to remind myself of an important lesson. The blade's an extension of the hand, the agent--no pun intended--of my will. Most people understand this immediately of edged weapons... The trick--and few are subtle or sophisticated enough to master it--is to see that this is equally true... by implication, of all machines.
I do think that women could make politics irrelevant; by a kind of spontaneous cooperative action the like of which we have never seen; which is so far from people’s ideas of state structure or viable social structure that it seems to them like total anarchy — when what it really is, is very subtle forms of interrelation that do not follow some heirarchal pattern which is fundamentally patriarchal. The opposite to patriarchy is not matriarchy but fraternity, yet I think it’s women who are going to have to break this spiral of power and find the trick of cooperation.
Fear is an unavoidable element of the mortal condition. Creation in all its ravishing beauty, with its infinite baroque embellishments and subtle charms, with all the wonders that it offers from both the Maker and the made, with all its velvet mystery and with all the joy we receive from those we love here, so enchants us lack we lack the imagination, less than the faith, to envision an even more dazzling world beyond, and therefore even if we believe, we cling tenaciously to this existence, to sweet familiarity, fearful that all conceivable paradises will prove wanting by comparison.