"Unlike Descartes, we own and use our beliefs of the moment, even in the midst of philosophizing, until by what is vaguely called scientific method we change them here and there for the better. Within our own total evolving doctrine, we can judge truth as earnestly and absolutely as can be, subject to correction, but that goes without saying."
"The predicate of truth-value of a proposition, therefore, is a mere fictive quality; its place is in an ideal world of science only, whereas actual science cannot make use of it. Actual science instead employs throughout the predicate of weight."
"When you realize how hard it is to know the truth about yourself, you understand that even the most exhaustive and well-meaning autobiography, determined to tell the truth, represents, at best, a guess. There have been times in my life when I felt incredibly happy. Life was full. I seemed productive. Then I thought,"Am I really happy or am I merely masking a deep depression with frantic activity?" If I don't know such basic things about myself, who does?"
"My bad head cannot adjust itself to the way things are.... If I want to depict spring, it has to be in wintertime; if I want to describe a beautiful landscape, I must be enclosed within walls; and I have said a hundred times that if I were put in the Bastille, there I would paint a picture of liberty."
"When we do not know the truth of a thing, it is of advantage that there should exist a common error which determines the mind of man.... For the chief malady of man is restless curiosity about things which he cannot understand; and it is not so bad for him to be in error as to be curious to no purpose."
"Our senses perceive no extreme. Too much sound deafens us; too much light dazzles us; too great distance or proximity hinders ourview. Too great length and too great brevity of discourse tends to obscurity; too much truth is paralyzing.... In short, extremes are for us as though they were not, and we are not within their notice. They escape us, or we them."