Virtue & Character

Virtue & Character


Einstein Quotes: Words of Wisdom Indeed!

Einstein quotes are remarkable words of wisdom May 5th, 2017

Albert Einstein not only has one of the most recognizable mugs of any person alive or dead, he worked extremely hard and intelligently throughout his long life. A genius in physics, he also was a committed peace activist and socialist. Almost everyone remembers him fondly, and though that is perhaps a bit unwarranted, in general he was an affable, productive, dedicated, ingenious, creative, kind, magnanimous individual. He was also very quotable! Many of his quotes were about values.

Read More

Inspirational Quotes Inspire Positive Actions

humans are made better by inspirational quotes April 29th, 2017

Canada geese are all over my neighborhood. They are social, and I think they mate in pairs such that the mate stays about and helps. Here is a story that is touching; you see, a goose laid eggs in a Whole Foods parking lot (the dirt), and workers cordoned off a little area for it. It just sits there on its eggs while cars and shoppers pass by! What does this mean – why is it about morality, kindness, love, compassion, or goodness? What does this have to do with inspirational quotes – the subject of this blog?

Read More

Critical Thinking is a Virtue: a Case Study

critical thinking April 27th, 2017

Science is very important. Most people have a fair amount of respect for science and scientists, though America is a fairly religious country. To find wisdom, one must look beneath the surface and go beyond rumor, Reddit and Twitter, and biases. How trustworthy is science in modern America? Are scientists and their findings trustworthy, or like most things, has money ruined science, too? Enter critical thinking!

Read More

Moderate or Milquetoast? David Brooks Quotes

David Brooks April 25th, 2017

Have you read any of David Brooks? He is a long-time New York Times opinion writer, contributor to the PBS nightly news, and multi-book author. Week after week, year after year, he can be counted on to write generally decent pieces that are center-right. He is kind of like Thomas L. Friedman: probably too “establishment” and “think-tanky” for me, but he is very tolerable. Lately, he has seemed fairly prescient, as someone of his ilk is just not cut out to appreciate, respect, or support the likes of Donald Trump. He’s more rational, sensible, anchored, and principled than that. He wrote an interesting piece on political moderation, and one on John McCain’s moral and political leadership. I realized then that I have quite a few David Brooks quotes. Is he wise, or wishy-washy? Magnanimous or milquetoast? Secretly co-0pted or smartly conservative? You make the call.

Read More

Quotations About Genius, Creativity, and Hard Work

quotations about genius are presented herein April 24th, 2017

As a follow-up to this post about Einstein, this blog will explore the nature of the brightest bulbs history has known – and there will be a number of quotations about genius, creativity, and hard work in the end. Questions that have intrigued humans for millennia include: What is the nature of genius? Is it just about I.Q.? How important is hard work? Can anyone be creative? Are the brains of very intelligent and insightful people different than those possessed by the rest of us? Let’s explore!

Read More

Values & Ethics: From Living Room to Boardroom

Values & Ethics: From Living Room to Boardroom April 20th, 2017

It seems like daily we are inundated by superficial social media, “fake news,” political demagogues, intolerant youth, and oppressive societal institutions. How can one find concentrate on what is real, wholesome, and reliable? Can we reach back into the past and access classical wisdom, traditional values, and a greater sense of fulfillment, meaning, and optimism? Values & Ethics: From Living Room to Boardroom (2017; Palmetto Publishing Group; $17.95 softcover) aims to address big-picture topics such as values, virtues, ethics, and wisdom. The following is a pitch for the book, including endorsements, reviews, an excerpt, description, and author bio.

Read More

Animal Rights: Zoos, Hunting, Circuses, & Meat

a question of animal rights April 19th, 2017

Animal rights is an issue that sometimes comes to the fore based on some significant event that the media picks up. Often it is People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals doing something dubious (e.g., in regard to wearing fur or vivisection or something). Today is a momentous day, though, because the Ringling Brothers Circus, after nearly 150 years, is calling it quits. I for one am a tad bit sad to see that unique piece of Americana go, but mostly relieved that finally those animals who are – let’s face it – slaves, will get to retire. So, almost everyone feels something about animal rights – experimentation, circuses, zoos, shelters euthanizing unwanted dogs and cats, or eating animals, but what are the moral issues involved? How should we probably be deciding about this thorny ethical issue? What rights do animals have that ought to be respected?

Read More

The Glory and Beauty of Magnanimity

angels April 2nd, 2017

Albert Einstein said: “Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.” That is a wonderful quote about wisdom – well, magnanimity to be exact. Magnanimity is from the Latin magnus and animus, meaning “great spirit.” It’s a wonderful value that gets at high-mindedness, points to real class, and denotes a generosity of the heart. Compassion, empathy, and love undergird this phenomenon. Other similar and related virtues similar are grace, nobility, honor, chivalry, greatness, and magnificence. There are few values that reach as high and deserve as much respect as magnanimity, altruism, and kindness.

Read More

Strength Quotes from A Diverse Group of People

strength quotes can help! April 1st, 2017

Strength quotes are one of the best ways to keep on keepin’ on, to push forward, to keep at it, and to overcome obstacles. Many great minds and historical characters of note faced insurmountable odds. Think of what Epictetus, Frederick Douglas, Fannie Lou Hamer, Nelson Mandela, and Bernie Sanders had to endure, and yet, they found the strength to keep going and continue trying; they persevered. Perseverance, dedication, stick-to-itiveness, will power, determination, stamina, and fortitude are allied values to this. Strength and courage combine to make a “ValueSet,” meaning, two values that are closely aligned in the values of the wise scheme.

Read More

Is Inequality of Wealth Fair and Acceptable?

inequality of wealth March 27th, 2017

Is it appropriate, legitimate, and wise for government to tax the wealthy in order to help the poor (i.e., redistribution)? I think this is largely a moral issue, though it clearly touches economics, and politics. It is my belief that it is morally appropriate for a legitimate government to tax wealthy citizens to redistribute to help the poor. It’s not right to live in a society that is the richest in the history of societies, has significant wealth inequality, very low unionization, flagging wages, and so on; many millions are without health insurance, living paycheck to paycheck, not being able to afford daycare, and such. That’s not a good society. The rich need to be willing to propagate and contribute to a more horizontal society than that. It’s also wise, in addition to simply being moral.

Read More