George Santayana Quotes

What brings enlightenment is experience, in the sad sense of this word—the pressure of hard facts and unintelligible troubles, making a man rub his eyes in his waking dream, and put two and two together. Enlightenment is cold water.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, essayist. Originally published in The Dial (1922). "Marginal Notes on Civilization in the United States," Santayana on America, Harcourt, Brace & World (1968).
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The effort of art is to keep what is interesting in existence, to recreate it in the eternal.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, poet. "Reason in Art," ch. 8, The Life of Reason (1905-1906, rev. edition 1953).
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To be interested in the changing seasons is, in this middling zone, a happier state of mind than to be hopelessly in love with spring.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, poet. repr. In Little Essays, "The Need of Discipline," ed. Logan Pearsall Smith (1920). "Reason in Art," The Life of Reason (1905).
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Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness. When change is absolute there remains no being to improve and no direction is set for possible improvement: and when experience is not retained, as among savages, infancy is perpetual.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, poet. "Reason in Common Sense," ch. 12, The Life of Reason (1905-1906).
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Fanaticism consists in redoubling your effort when you have forgotten your aim.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, essayist. Reason in Common Sense, introduction, originally published 1922.
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There is a kind of courtesy in skepticism. It would be an offense against polite conventions to press our doubts too far.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, poet. "Reason in Common Sense," ch. 4, The Life of Reason (1905-1906).
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Character is the basis of happiness and happiness the sanction of character.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, poet. "Reason in Common Sense," ch. 9, The Life of Reason (1905-1906).
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Knowledge is not eating, and we cannot expect to devour and possess what we mean. Knowledge is recognition of something absent; it is a salutation, not an embrace.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, essayist. Originally published 1922. Reason in Common Sense, chapter 3, Collier Books (1962).
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The body is an instrument, the mind its function, the witness and reward of its operation.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, poet. "Reason in Common Sense," ch. 9, The Life of Reason (1905-1906).
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Fashion is something barbarous, for it produces innovation without reason and imitation without benefit.
George Santayana (1863-1952), U.S. philosopher, poet. "Reason in Religion," ch. 7, The Life of Reason (1905-1906).
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