Quotes about ideas and thoughts

A collection of quotes on the topic of idea.

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Winston S. Churchill photo

„Everyone is in favour of free speech. Hardly a day passes without its being extolled, but some people's idea of it is that they are free to say what they like, but if anyone says anything back, that is an outrage“

—  Winston S. Churchill, book The Second World War

"The Coalmining Situation", Speech to the House of Commons (October 13, 1943)
The Second World War (1939–1945)
Source: Google books link https://books.google.com/books?id=hc8pAAAAQBAJ&pg=PT373&lpg=PT373&dq=%22if+anyone+says+anything+back+that+is+an+outrage%22&source=bl&ots=vQG7eKCVNO&sig=FgGJGUVc7MSNY3-hyQrYpC8tiOY&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CFEQ6AEwDWoVChMI-J-rpoiWyQIVF9tjCh2cLAel#v=onepage&q=%22if%20anyone%20says%20anything%20back%20that%20is%20an%20outrage%22&f=false

Modest Mussorgsky photo

„I regard the people as a great being, inspired by a single idea. This is my problem. I strove to solve it in this opera.“

—  Modest Mussorgsky Russian composer 1839 - 1881

MS dedication to Boris Godunov, January 21, 1874. http://www.bklynnews.com/BklynRadio/boris%20godunov-1.htm

Joaquin Phoenix photo
Max Planck photo

„A new scientific truth does not generally triumph by persuading its opponents and getting them to admit their errors, but rather by its opponents gradually dying out and giving way to a new generation that is raised on it. … An important scientific innovation rarely makes its way by gradually winning over and converting its opponents: it rarely happens that Saul becomes Paul. What does happen is that its opponents gradually die out, and that the growing generation is familiarized with the ideas from the beginning: another instance of the fact that the future lies with the youth.“

—  Max Planck German theoretical physicist 1858 - 1947

Eine neue wissenschaftliche Wahrheit pflegt sich nicht in der Weise durchzusetzen, daß ihre Gegner überzeugt werden und sich als belehrt erklären, sondern vielmehr dadurch, daß ihre Gegner allmählich aussterben und daß die heranwachsende Generation von vornherein mit der Wahrheit vertraut gemacht ist. … Eine neue große wissenschaftliche Idee pflegt sich nicht in der Weise durchzusetzen, daß ihre Gegner allmählich überzeugt und bekehrt werden — daß aus einem Saulus ein Paulus wird, ist eine große Seltenheit —, sondern vielmehr in der Weise, dass die Gegner allmählich aussterben und daß die heranwachsende Generation von vornherein mit der Idee vertraut gemacht wird. Auch hier heißt es wieder: Wer die Jugend hat, der hat die Zukunft.
Wissenschaftliche Selbstbiographie. Mit einem Bildnis und der von Max von Laue gehaltenen Traueransprache. Johann Ambrosius Barth Verlag (Leipzig 1948), p. 22, in Scientific Autobiography and Other Papers, (1949), as translated by F. Gaynor, pp. 33–34, 97 (as cited in T. S. Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions). Translation revised by Eric Weinberger.

Nikola Tesla photo
Georges Seurat photo
Harry Styles photo
Fritjof Capra photo
Tom Watson photo

„Follow the path of the unsafe, independent thinker. Expose your ideas to the danger of controversy. Speak your mind and fear less the label of "crackpot" than the stigma of conformity.“

—  Tom Watson American businessman 1874 - 1956

Attributed to Watson in: Georg Blair, Sandy Meadows (1996) A Real-Life Guide to Organizational Change. p. 117.

Karl Dönitz photo

„By placing these people with foreign ideas in camps, German blood was saved. Would it have been better to have a civil war?“

—  Karl Dönitz President of Germany; admiral in command of German submarine forces during World War II 1891 - 1980

To Leon Goldensohn, May 2, 1946, from "The Nuremberg Interviews" by Leon Goldensohn, Robert Gellately - History - 2004.

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Arthur C. Clarke photo
Charlie Parker photo
Luis A. Ferré photo

„Revolutionary in my ideas, liberal in my objectives and conservative in my methods.“

—  Luis A. Ferré American politician 1904 - 2003

As quoted by the New York Times http://www.nytimes.com/2003/10/22/us/luis-a-ferre-dies-at-99-pushed-puerto-rican-statehood.html in an October 22, 2003 obituary.

Emil M. Cioran photo
Emil M. Cioran photo
Emil M. Cioran photo
Emil M. Cioran photo
Joseph Stalin photo

„Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns, why should we let them have ideas?“

—  Joseph Stalin General secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union 1879 - 1953

Often attributed to Stalin, there is not a single source which show that Stalin said this at any given time. There is only one source outside the blogosphere which attributes the quote to Stalin, but does not provide any evidence for the attribution. That source is the book Quotations for Public Speakers : A Historical, Literary, and Political Anthology (2001), p. 121 by the former US senator Robert Torricelli.
Misattributed

George Harrison photo

„My idea in "My Sweet Lord," because it sounded like a "pop song," was to sneak up on them a bit.“

—  George Harrison British musician, former member of the Beatles 1943 - 2001

Interview with Mukunda Goswami (4 September 1982)
Context: My idea in "My Sweet Lord," because it sounded like a "pop song," was to sneak up on them a bit. The point was to have the people not offended by "Hallelujah," and by the time it gets to "Hare Krishna," they're already hooked, and their foot's tapping, and they're already singing along "Hallelujah," to kind of lull them into a sense of false security. And then suddenly it turns into "Hare Krishna," and they will all be singing that before they know what's happened, and they will think, "Hey, I thought I wasn't supposed to like Hare Krishna!"

William Golding photo

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“