"As by the fires of experience, so by commission of crime, you learn real morals. Commit all the crimes, familiarize yourself withall sins, take them in rotation (there are only two or three thousand of them), stick to it, commit two or three every day, and by-and-by you will be proof against them. When you are through you will be proof against all sins and morally perfect. You will be vaccinated against every possible commission of them. This is the only way."
"A way of certifying experience, taking photographs is also a way of refusing it--by limiting experience to a search for the photogenic, by converting experience into an image, a souvenir. Travel becomes a strategy for accumulating photographs."
"We learn through experience and experiencing, and no one teaches anyone anything. This is as true for the infant moving from kicking to crawling to walking as it is for the scientist with his equations. If the environment permits it, anyone can learn whatever he chooses to learn; and if the individual permits it, the environment will teach him everything it has to teach."
"When a Man is in a serious Mood, and ponders upon his own Make, with a Retrospect to the Actions of his Life, and the many fatal Miscarriages in it, which he owes to ungoverned Passions, he is then apt to say to himself, That Experience has guarded him against such Errors for the future: But Nature often recurs in Spite of his best Resolutions, and it is to the very End of our Days a Struggle between our Reason and our Temper, which shall have the Empire over us."
"A man sees only what concerns him.... How much more, then, it requires different intentions of the eye and of the mind to attend to different departments of knowledge! How differently the poet and the naturalist look at objects!"
"There is, however, this consolation to the most way-worn traveler, upon the dustiest road, that the path his feet describe is so perfectly symbolical of human life,--now climbing the hills, now descending into the vales. From the summits he beholds the heavens and the horizon, from the vales he looks up to the heights again. He is treading his old lessons still, and though he may be very weary and travel-worn, it is yet sincere experience."
"Ancient history has an air of antiquity. It should be more modern. It is written as if the specator should be thinking of the backside of the picture on the wall, or as if the author expected that the dead would be his readers, and wished to detail to them their own experience."