Thirteen years in the making, The Wisdom Archive is a massive quote database available for free to the public. No advertisements, no pop-ups. If your goal is to search for the best motivational quotations and inspirational quotes on values, you came to the right place. Wisdom, ethics, personal growth, philosophy, a good life, happiness, education, and insight are the goals. Read on to learn more about why The Wisdom Archive is an awesome resource for students, writers, scholars, those on a quest for personal development, and life-long learners.
Why is this remarkable quote database named “The Wisdom Archive?” Well, archive means collection or resource, and wisdom refers to the nature of the overarching goal. The quotations chosen to comprise this unsurpassed resource were collected by Jason Merchey, the independent scholar and philosophical thinker who founded Values of the Wise, LLC back in 2004. Countless hours were spent buying or acquiring books, reading them, highlighting them, transcribing the words of wisdom, creating/maintaining/paying for an online platform, placing each quotation carefully online, and promoting it. Jason has an eye for sentences that are “about wisdom or values” and was dedicated and creative enough to fit them all into the “values of the wise scheme.” He happily makes them available to the public for free. The more wisdom that is out there in this momentous and tumultuous time, the better. Finding wisdom in original sources and putting in the time to collect the proverbs, lyrics, and maxims are his specialty and his avocation.
Which are the values that the quote database is centered around? Which are the values of the wise? Well, throughout time, certain aspirations, interests, loves, and values have been prioritized and extolled again and again. Have you ever heard of a society that didn’t value justice? Not justice as a particular social norm, but justice per se? No. Every society has outlawed murder, for example. Cheetahs hunt; meerkats keep watch; chimpanzees socialize; humans value justice. Child abuse, cheating, and disloyalty are not tolerated for the most part. Even a cannibalistic society or one that sanctions certain kinds of theft always take place within certain bounds – the mores and proscriptions of that society. Think about counting coup: perfect example of the bounds particular American Indian tribes set for justice (and courage, stealth, etc.). If an Indian cheats or murders when they are bound by the structure of counting coup, they are toast. Maybe one can share spouses or perhaps children are raised communally, but one can definitely run afoul of societal expectations and laws. The point is: justice is part of the fabric of every community. From toddlerhood to convalescence, people who are psychologically normal know what justice is. They don’t always uphold it – but that is a personal failing, not an indication that justice is not “a thing.” So justice is one of the “values of the wise.” This means that wise persons seek justice and wish to cultivate it; they honor it; they value it; they love it. In a word: fair is fair, and human societies honor that.
There are 27 additional values of the wise – the values which wise persons cherish and seek to cultivate within themselves. We can learn a lot from wise persons, and it is instructive that they, by definition, don’t veer into rampant selfishness, abject ignorance, or an uncouth boorishness. To do so would nullify the putative wisdom of the person in question. One cannot be a wise, evil person; it is impossible to be a wise, foolish old man. Thus, we can learn from this theoretical wise person, not unlike the way elders and sages were admired in societies of old (note that in modern America, we have upraised money, celebrity, beauty and youth above age, experience, wisdom, cleverness, and dedication). Can you even imagine a Pericles or a Golda Meir or an Abraham Lincoln who are marked more by money and lust for power than wisdom and gravitas? Picture if you’re able a Helen Keller, Louis Pasteur, or Giordano Bruno who valued money, fame, and prestige more than wisdom, generosity or principle. A cowardly Elie Wiesel? A frivolous Gandhi? An ignorant Martin Luther King, Jr.? A weak Nelson Mandela? You get my point. A quote database worth the transistors will honor wisdom, courage, ingenuity, integrity, and steadfastness – and that is what the wise counsel us to do. This is a collection of some of the wisest sayings, deepest words of wisdom, most trenchant thoughts about values, wisdom, ethics, and self-help throughout history and various cultures.
The Wisdom Archive is a feast for the curious, a boon for the life-long learner, and a free resource for the self-starter. There probably is not a richer, more searchable, broader, more generative grouping of motivational quotes available. Add in the search features and you have yourself one valuable resource. The wise passionately wanted to share their thoughts with you today, so go find out what they believed! Research until your heart’s content. If you are interested in a soft- or hardcover book to complement the web-based source, be my guest.