Bertrand Russell Quotes on Happiness and Life

Bertrand Russell was a philosopher and mathematician who made significant contributions to the fields of logic and philosophy. He was also a prolific writer, and his thoughts and ideas are still relevant today. Here are some of Bertrand Russell quotes on a variety of topics.

bertrand russell quotes

Bertrand Russell was born in England in 1872. He was a philosopher, mathematician, and social critic. Russell is best known for his work in mathematical logic and for his popular writings on philosophy, ethics, and social issues.

One of Russell’s most famous ideas is the theory of knowledge. This theory states that there are three different ways of knowing things: sense experience, inference, and intuition. Sense experience is the direct observation of things, inference is the process of reasoning from one thing to another, and intuition is a kind of direct insight into the nature of things. Russell believed that the only reliable form of knowledge is that which is based on sense experience.

Russell was also a strong advocate of naturalism. Naturalism is the belief that the only things that exist are the things that can be observed by the senses. This means that there is no such thing as an objective reality that exists independently of our perceptions. Russell believed that this is the only way to avoid the problems of metaphysical speculation.

79 Bertrand Russell Quotes

  1. “To fear love is to fear life, and those who fear life are already 3-parts dead.”

2. “The good life is inspired by love and guided by knowledge”

3. “Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom.”

4. “Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric.”

5. “Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong have governed my life: the longing for love, the search for knowledge, and unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind.”

6. “Patience and boredom are closely related. Boredom, a certain kind of boredom, is really impatience. You don’t like the way things are, they aren’t interesting enough for you, so you deccide- and boredom is a decision-that you are bored.”

7. “The wise man thinks about his troubles only when there is some purpose in doing so; at other times he thinks about other things, or, if it is night, about nothing at all.”

8. “How much longer is the world willing to endure this spectacle of wanton cruelty?”

9. “There are two motives for reading a book; one, that you enjoy it; the other, that you can boast about it.”

10. “We love our habits more than our income, often more than our life.”

bertrand russell famous quotes

Bertrand Russell Quotes on Happiness

11. “Stupidity and unconscious bias often work more damage than venality.”

12. “To like many people spontaneously and without effort is perhaps the greatest of all sources of personal happiness.”

13. “The hardest thing to learn in life is which bridge to cross and which to burn.”

14. “To be without some of the things you want is an indispensable part of happiness.”

15. “Remember your humanity, and forget the rest.”

16. “I would never die for my beliefs because I might be wrong.”

17. “Happiness is not best achieved by those who seek it directly.”

18. “One of the most powerful of all our passions is the desire to be admired and respected.”

19. “Most of the greatest evils that man has inflicted upon man have come through people feeling quite certain about something which, in fact, was false.”

20. “Patriots always talk of dying for their country but never of killing for their country.”

bertrand russell happiness quotes

Famous Bertrand Russell Quotes

21. “Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons”

22. “To fear love is to fear life, and those who fear life are already three parts dead.”

23. “Life is nothing but a competition to be the criminal rather than the victim.”

24. “In all affairs it’s a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted.”

25. “There is no reason to suppose that the world had a beginning at all. The idea that things must have a beginning is really due to the poverty of our thoughts.”

26. “The man who pursues happiness wisely will aim at the possession of a number of subsidiary interests in addition to those central ones upon which his life is built.”

27. “A stupid man’s report of what a clever man says can never be accurate, because he unconsciously translates what he hears into something he can understand.”

28. “Conquer the world by intelligence, and not merely by being slavishly subdued by the terror that comes from it.”

29. “A sense of duty is useful in work but offensive in personal relations. People wish to be liked, not to be endured with patient resignation.”

30. “Neither a man nor a crowd nor a nation can be trusted to act humanely or to think sanely under the influence of a great fear.”

Thought-Provoking Bertrand Russell Quotes

31. “Science is what you know, philosophy is what you don’t know”

32. “A good world needs knowledge, kindliness, and courage; it does not need a regretful hankering after the past or a fettering of the free intelligence by the words uttered long ago by ignorant men.”

33. “It’s easy to fall in love. The hard part is finding someone to catch you.”

34. “One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one’s work is terribly important.”

35. “Men are born ignorant, not stupid; they are made stupid by education.”

36. “One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision.”

37. “Is there any knowledge in the world which is so certain that no reasonable man could doubt it?”

38. “Education is not to be viewed as something like filling a vessel with water but, rather, assisting a flower to grow in its own way”

39. “What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite.”

40. “One must care about a world one will not see.”

Bertrand Russell Quotes To Live By

41. “I do not myself feel that any person who is really profoundly humane can believe in everlasting punishment.”

42. “To teach how to live without certainty, and yet without being paralyzed by hesitation, is perhaps the chief thing that philosophy, in our age, can still do for those who study it.”

43. “Anything you’re good at contributes to happiness.”

44. “There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge.”

45. “Happiness, as is evident, depends partly upon external circumstances and partly upon oneself.”

46. “Not to be absolutely certain is, I think, one of the essential things in rationality.”

47. “Your writing is never as good as you hoped; but never as bad as you feared.”

48. “If an opinion contrary to your own makes you angry, that is a sign that you are subconsciously aware of having no good reason for thinking as you do.”

49. “Whoever wishes to become a philosopher must learn not to be frightened by absurdities.”

50. “Those who have never known the deep intimacy and the intense companionship of happy mutual love have missed the best thing that life has to give.”

51. “The secret of happiness is to face the fact that the world is horrible, horrible, horrible.”

52. “A man is rational in proportion as his intelligence informs and controls his desires.”

53. “All serious innovation is only rendered possible by some accident enabling unpopular persons to survive.”

54. “We know very little, and yet it is astonishing that we know so much, and still more astonishing that so little knowledge can give us so much power.”

55. “I think we ought always to entertain our opinions with some measure of doubt. I shouldn’t wish people dogmatically to believe any philosophy, not even mine. ”

56. “The only thing that will redeem mankind is cooperation.”

57. “Boredom is therefore a vital problem for the moralist, since at least half the sins of mankind are caused by the fear of it.”

58. “The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.”

59. “Science may set limits to knowledge, but should not set limits to imagination.”

60. “Never try to discourage thinking, for you are sure to succeed.”

61. “The idea that things must have a beginning is really due to the poverty of our imagination.”

62. “It is essential to happiness that our way of living should spring from our own deep impulses and not from the accidental tastes and desires of those who happen to be our neighbors, or even our relations.”

63. “The search for something permanent is one of the deepest of the instincts leading men to philosophy.”

64. “Every man, wherever he goes, is encompassed by a cloud of comforting convictions, which move with him like flies on a summer day.”

65. “The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution.”

66. “Sometimes the hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn”

67. “The fundamental concept in social science is Power, in the same sense in which Energy is the fundamental concept in physics.”

68. “Most people would rather die than think and many of them do!”

69. “It has been said that man is a rational animal. All my life I have been searching for evidence which could support this.”

70. “A happy life must be to a great extent a quiet life, for it is only in an atmosphere of quiet that true joy can live.”

71. “It is a waste of energy to be angry with a man who behaves badly, just as it is to be angry with a car that won’t go.”

72. “To be able to fill leisure intelligently is the last product of civilization, and at present very few people have reached this level.”

73. “The most savage controversies are those about matters as to which there is no good evidence either way.”

74. “The wise man will be as happy as circumstances permit, and if he finds the contemplation of the universe painful beyond a point, he will contemplate something else instead.”

75. “Extreme hopes are born from extreme misery.”

76. “Language serves not only to express thought but to make possible thoughts which could not exist without it.”

77. “There is no nonsense so errant that it cannot be made the creed of the vast majority by adequate governmental action.”

78. “No satisfaction based upon self-deception is solid, and however unpleasant the truth may be, it is better to face it once and for all, to get used to it, and to proceed to build your life in accordance with it.”

79. “We need a morality based upon love of life, upon pleasure in growth and positive achievement, not upon repression and prohibition.”

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