Over the years, humans have consistently shown their ability to demonstrate wisdom on life and how to live, without reference to or need of a supernatural higher authority. Below are some quotations that demonstrate that wisdom and promote our values.
"The World is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion."
"This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.
I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community, and as long as I live it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can.
I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no "brief candle" for me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations."
George Bernard Shaw
"The known is finite, the unknown infinite; intellectually we stand on an islet in the midst of an illimitable ocean of inexplicability. Our business in every generation is to reclaim a little more land."
Thomas Henry Huxley
"Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in you religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it."
"He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much; who has enjoyed the trust of pure women, the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children; who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; who has never lacked appreciation of Earth's beauty or failed to express it; who has left the world better than he found it."
Bessie Anderson Stanley
"You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals. To that end each of us must work for his own improvement, and at the same time share a general responsibility for all humanity, our particular duty being to aid those to whom we think we can be most useful."
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."
"What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal."
"Laws can embody standards; governments can enforce laws - but the final task is not a task for government. It is a task for each and every one of us. Every time we turn our heads the other way when we see the law flouted - when we tolerate what we know to be wrong - when we close our eyes and ears to the corrupt because we are too busy, or too frightened - when we fail to speak up and speak out - we strike a blow against freedom and decency and justice."
Robert F. Kennedy
"If we are to achieve a richer culture, rich in contrasting values, we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse human gift will find a fitting place."
"Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?"
"You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough."
"You must teach your children that the ground beneath their feet is the ashes of our grandfathers. So that they will respect the land, tell your children that the Earth is rich with the lives of our kin. Teach your children what we have taught our children, that the Earth is our mother. Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons of the Earth. If men spit upon the ground, they spit upon themselves. This we know - the Earth does not belong to man - man belongs to the Earth. This we know. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family. All things are connected. Whatever befalls the Earth, befalls the sons of the Earth. Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself."
"Who is more humble? The scientist who looks at the universe with an open mind and accepts whatever the universe has to teach us, or somebody who says everything in this book must be considered the literal truth and never mind the fallibility of all the human beings involved?"
"There is a fundamental difference between religion, which is based on authority, and science, which is based on observation and reason. Science will win, because it works."