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 :: 1842-1910, American Psychologist, Professor, Author

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Success plus Self-esteem equals Pretensions.
~ William James - [Self-image]

 

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There is a voice inside which speaks and says: ''This is the real me!''
~ William James - [Self-love]

 

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A man has as many social selves as there are individuals who recognize him.
~ William James - [Socializing and Socialism]

 

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Spiritual energy flows in and produces effects in the phenomenal world.
~ William James - [Spirit and Spirituality]

 

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Why should we think upon things that are lovely? Because thinking determines life. It is a common habit to blame life upon the environment. Environment modifies life but does not govern life. The soul is stronger than its surroundings.
~ William James - [Thoughts and Thinking]

 

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We never fully grasp the import of any true statement until we have a clear notion of what the opposite untrue statement would be.
~ William James - [Truth]

 

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The attitude of unhappiness is not only painful, it is mean and ugly. What can be more base and unworthy than the pining, puling, mumping mood, no matter by what outward ills it may have been engendered? What is more injurious to others? What less helpful as a way out of the difficulty? It but fastens and perpetuates the trouble which occasioned it, and increases the total evil of the situation. At all costs, then, we ought to reduce the sway of that mood; we ought to scout it in ourselves and others, and never show it tolerance.
~ William James - [Unhappiness]

 

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Whatever universe a professor believes in must at any rate be a universe that lends itself to lengthy discourse. A universe definable in two sentences is something for which the professorial intellect has no use. No faith in anything of that cheap kind!
~ William James - [Universe]

 

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Every man who possibly can should force himself to a holiday of a full month in a year, whether he feels like taking it or not.
~ William James - [Vacation]

 

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Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they've got a second. Give your dreams all you've got and you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you.
~ William James - [Perseverance]

 

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As there is no worse lie than a truth misunderstood by those who hear it, so reasonable arguments, challenges to magnanimity, and appeals to sympathy or justice, are folly when we are dealing with human crocodiles and boa-constrictors.
~ William James - [Persuasion]

 

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I know that you, ladies and gentlemen, have a philosophy, each and all of you, and that the most interesting and important thing about you is the way in which it determines the perspective in your several worlds.
~ William James - [Philosophers and Philosophy]

 

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Philosophy is at once the most sublime and the most trivial of human pursuits.
~ William James - [Philosophers and Philosophy]

 

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To be a real philosopher all that is necessary is to hate some one else's type of thinking.
~ William James - [Philosophers and Philosophy]

 

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Compared to what we ought to be, we are only half awake. We are making use of only a small part of our physical and mental resources. Stating the thing broadly, the human individual thus lives far within his limits. He possesses power of various sorts which he habitually fails to use.
~ William James - [Possibilities]

 

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Whenever two people meet there are really six people present. There is each man as he sees himself, each man as the other person sees him, and each man as he really is.
~ William James - [Possibilities]

 

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Everyone knows that on any given day there are energies slumbering in him which the incitement's of that day do not call forth. Compared with what we ought to be, we are only half awake. The human individual usually lives far within his limits.
~ William James - [Potential]

 

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If any organism fails to fulfill its potentialities, it becomes sick.
~ William James - [Potential]

 

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Most people live, whether physically, intellectually or morally, in a very restricted circle of their potential being. They make very small use of their possible consciousness, and of their soul's resources in general, much like a man who, out of his whole bodily organism, should get into a habit of using and moving only his little finger.
~ William James - [Potential]

 

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We have grown literally afraid to be poor. We despise anyone who elects to be poor in order to simplify and save his inner life. If he does not join the general scramble and pant with the money-making street, we deem him spiritless and lacking in ambition.
~ William James - [Poverty and The Poor]

 

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