Robert Heinlein Quotes
1. Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.
2. Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea.
3. Happiness consists in getting enough sleep. Just that, nothing more.
4. Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.
5. Anybody can look at a pretty girl and see a pretty girl. An artist can look at a pretty girl and see the old woman she will become. A better artist can look at an old woman and see the pretty girl that she used to be. But a great artist-a master-and that is what Auguste Rodin was-can look at an old woman, protray her exactly as she is…and force the viewer to see the pretty girl she used to be…and more than that, he can make anyone with the sensitivity of an armadillo, or even you, see that this lovely young girl is still alive, not old and ugly at all, but simply prisoned inside her ruined body. He can make you feel the quiet, endless tragedy that there was never a girl born who ever grew older than eighteen in her heart…no matter what the merciless hours have done to her. Look at her, Ben. Growing old doesn’t matter to you and me; we were never meant to be admired-but it does to them.
6. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.
7. A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
8. A prude is a person who thinks that his own rules of propriety are natural laws.
9. Don’t handicap your children by making their lives easy.
10. Jealousy is a disease, love is a healthy condition. The immature mind often mistakes one for the other, or assumes that the greater the love, the greater the jealousy – in fact, they are almost incompatible; one emotion hardly leaves room for the other.
11. You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don’t ever count on having both at once.
12. Progress isn’t made by early risers. It’s made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.
13. You have attributed conditions to villainy that simply result from stupidity.
14. You have attributed conditions to villainy that simply result from stupidity.
15. Never try to outstubborn a cat.
16. There is no worse tyranny than to force a man to pay for what he does not want merely because you think it would be good for him.
17. I’ve found out why people laugh. They laugh because it hurts so much . . . because it’s the only thing that’ll make it stop hurting.
18. Being a mother is an attitude, not a biological relation.
19. A dying culture invariably exhibits personal rudeness. Bad manners. Lack of consideration for others in minor matters. A loss of politeness, of gentle manners, is more significant than is a riot.
20. Sex, whatever else it is, is an athletic skill. The more you practice, the more you can, the more you want to, the more you enjoy it, the less it tires you.
21. Sin lies only in hurting others unnecessarily. All other “sins” are invented nonsense.
22. Once a month, some women act like men act all the time.
23. Always listen to experts. They’ll tell you what can’t be done, and why. Then do it.
24. Almost any sect, cult, or religion will legislate its creed into law if it acquires the political power to do so.
25. Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards.
26. Butterflies are self propelled flowers.
27. The most preposterous notion that Homo sapiens has ever dreamed up is that the Lord God of Creation, Shaper and Ruler of all the Universes, wants the saccharine adoration of His creatures, can be swayed by their prayers, and becomes petulant if He does not receive this flattery. Yet this absurd fantasy, without a shred of evidence to bolster it, pays all the expenses of the oldest, largest, and least productive industry in all history.
28. Secrecy is the keystone to all tyranny. Not force, but secrecy and censorship. When any government or church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, “This you may not read, this you must not know,” the end result is tyranny and oppression, no matter how holy the motives. Mighty little force is needed to control a man who has been hoodwinked in this fashion; contrariwise, no amount of force can control a free man, whose mind is free. No, not the rack nor the atomic bomb, not anything. You can’t conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him.
29. May you live as long as you wish and love as long as you live.
30. Sex should be friendly. Otherwise stick to mechanical toys; it’s more sanitary.
31. There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.
32. There is no such thing as “Just a cat.
33. A desire not to butt into other people’s business is at least eighty percent of all human wisdom.
34. How you behave toward cats here below determines your status in Heaven.
35. Love” is a that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own…Jealousy is a disease, love is a healthy condition. The immature mind often mistakes one for the other, or assumes that the greater the love, the greater the jealousy
36. Being right too soon is socially unacceptable.
37. An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life.
38. A society that gets rid of all its troublemakers goes downhill.
39. When one teaches, two learn.
40. In the absence of clearly-defined goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily trivia until ultimately we become enslaved by it
41. Climate is what you expect, weather is what you get.
42. Violence, naked force, has settled more issues in history than has any other factor.
43. Secrecy begets tyranny.
44. Delusions are often functional. A mother’s opinions about her children’s beauty, intelligence, goodness, et cetera ad nauseam, keep her from drowning them at birth.
45. Everything in excess! To enjoy the flavor of life, take big bites. Moderation is for monks.
46. One man’s theology is another man’s belly laugh.
47. Whenever women have insisted on absolute equality with men, they have invariably wound up with the dirty end of the stick. What they are and what they can do makes them superior to men, and their proper tactic is to demand special privileges, all the traffic will bear. They should never settle merely for equality. For women, “equality” is a disaster.
48. A generation which ignores history has no past — and no future.
49. Your enemy is never a villain in his own eyes. Keep this in mind; it may offer a way to make him your friend. If not, you can kill him without hate — and quickly.
50. Consider the black widow spider. It’s a timid little beastie, useful and, for my taste, the prettiest of the arachnids, with its shiny, patent-leather finish and its red hourglass trademark. But the poor thing has the fatal misfortune of possessing enormously too much power for its size. So everybody kills it on sight.
51. Anybody can look at a pretty girl and see a pretty girl. An artist can look at a pretty girl and see the old woman she will become. A better artist can look at an old woman and see the pretty girl that she used to be. But a great artist–a master–and that is what Auguste Rodin was–can look at an old woman, portray her exactly as she is . . . and force the viewer to see the pretty girl she used to be . . . and more than that, he can make anyone with the sensitivity of an armadillo, or even you, see that this lovely young girl is still alive, not old and ugly at all, but simply prisoned inside her ruined body.
52. But goodness alone is never enough. A hard, cold wisdom is required for goodness to accomplish good. Goodness without wisdom always accomplishes evil.
53. Liberty is never unalienable; it must be redeemed regularly with the blood of patriots or it always vanishes. Of all the so-called natural human rights that have ever been invented, liberty is least likely to be cheap and is never free of cost.
54. Belief gets in the way of learning.
55. Political tags — such as royalist, communist, democrat, populist, fascist, liberal, conservative, and so forth — are never basic criteria. The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire. The former are idealists acting from highest motives for the greatest good of the greatest number. The latter are surly curmudgeons, suspicious and lacking in altruism. But they are more comfortable neighbors than the other sort.
56. You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.
57. Yield to temptation…it may not pass your way again!
58. If you’ve got the truth you can demonstrate it. Talking doesn’t prove it.
59. Thinking doesn’t pay. Just makes you discontented with what you see around you.
60. Be wary of strong drink, it can make you shoot at the tax collector…and miss.