It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has all the evidence. It biases the judgement.SirArthur Conan Doyle: 1887 A Study in Scarlet, ch.3.
Mistaken in its assumptions, defective in its evidence and wrong in its conclusions.Donald Thomas Regan: 1988 Of the congressional report faulting him on lack of direction and public disclosure of Iran-Contra arms sales. For the Record.
We cannot bring ourselves to believe it possible that a foreigner should in any respect be wiser than ourselves. If any such point out to us our follies, we at once claim those follies as the special evidence of our wisdom.Anthony Trollope: 1862 Stavely. Orley Farm, ch.18.
In the realm of science, all attempts to find any evidence of supernatural beings, of metaphysical concepts, as God, immortality, infinity, etc have thus far failed, and if we are honest, we must confess that in science there exists no God, no immortality, no soul or mind, as distinct from the body.Charles Proteus Steinmetz: 1941 In the American Freeman, Jul.
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.Bible (NewTestament): Hebrews11:1.
False facts are highly injuriousto the progress of science, for they often long endure; but false views, if supported by some evidence, do little harm, as every one takes a salutary pleasure in proving their falseness.Charles Robert Darwin: 1871The Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex, ch.13.
But to ignore the absence of evidence is the basis of true faith.Vidal, Gore originally Eugene Luther Vidal,Jr: 1981 'PinkTriangle andYellow Star', in the Nation,14 Nov.
No wonder the really powerful men in our society, whether politicians or scientists, hold writers in contempt.Theydoit becausetheyget no evidence from modern literature that anybody is thinking about any significant question.Saul Bellow: 1965 Interview in The Paris Review, no.37, winter issue.
A judge is not supposed to know anything about the facts of life until they have been presented in evidence and explained to him at least three times.1961 Quoted in the Observer,12 Mar.
A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence.David Hume: 1748 An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding, section10, pt.1.
Some circumstantial evidence is very strong, as when you find a trout in the milk.Henry David Thoreau: 1850 Journal entry,11 Nov.
Space-ships and time machines are no escape from the human condition. Let Othello subject Desdemona to a lie-detector test; his jealousy will still blind him to the evidence. Let Oedipus triumph over gravity; he won't triumph over his fate.Arthur Koestler: 1953 'The Boredom of Fantasy', collected in The Trail of the Dinosaur (1955), pt.2.
The theater is the primary evidence of a nation's culture.James Grover Thurber: 1952 In the NewYorkTimes, 27 Jul.
There is no surer evidence of an unconverted state than to have the things of the world uppermost in our aim, love, and estimation.joseph alleine: P. 621. (Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895))
In an age of spin, al-Sahaf offers feeling and authenticity. His message is consistent — unshakeable, in fact, no matter the evidence — but he commands daily attention by his on-the-spot, invective-rich variations on the theme. His lunatic counterfactual art is more appealing than the banal awfulness of the Reliable Sources. He is a Method actor in a production that will close in a couple of days. He stands superior to truth.muhammed saeed al-sahhaf: Jean-Pierre McGarrigle at
The atom can't be seen, yet its existence can be proved. And it is simple to prove that it can't ever be seen. It has to be studied by indirect evidence — and the technical difficulty has been compared to asking a man who has never seen a piano to describe a piano from the sound it would make falling downstairs in the dark.carl david anderson: As quoted in Carl Anderson. Some notes about his life and work at Caltech. The first of a series of biographical sketches of Caltech faculty members. Engineering and Science, Vol. 15:1 (October 1951)
If there ever was a case of clearer evidence than this of persons acting together, this case is that casewilliam arabin: Sir R. Megarry, Arabinesque at Law (1969)
I often get letters, quite frequently, from people who say how they like the programmes a lot, but I never give credit to the almighty power that created nature. To which I reply and say, "Well, it's funny that the people, when they say that this is evidence of the Almighty, always quote beautiful things. They always quote orchids and hummingbirds and butterflies and roses." But I always have to think too of a little boy sitting on the banks of a river in west Africa who has a worm boring through his eyeball, turning him blind before he's five years old. And I reply and say, "Well, presumably the God you speak about created the worm as well," and now, I find that baffling to credit a merciful God with that action. And therefore it seems to me safer to show things that I know to be truth, truthful and factual, and allow people to make up their own minds about the moralities of this thing, or indeed the theology of this thing.david attenborough: From the BBC documentary Life on Air (2002)
This is the last programme in this natural history, and it's very different from all the others because it's been devoted to just one animal: ourselves. And that may have been a very misleading thing to have done. It may have given the impression that somehow man was the ultimate triumph of evolution, that all those thousands of millions of years of development had no purpose other than to put man on Earth. There is no scientific evidence whatsoever for such a belief. No reason to suppose that man's stay on Earth should be any longer than that of the dinosaurs. He may have learned how to control his environment, how to pass on information from one generation to another, but the very forces of evolution that brought him into existence here on these African plains are still at work elsewhere in the world, and if man were to disappear, for whatever reason, there is doubtless somewhere some small, unobtrusive creature that would seize the opportunity and, with a spurt of evolution, take man's place. But although denying a special place in the world may be becomingly modest, the fact remains that man has an unprecedented control over the world and everything in it. And so, whether he likes it or not, what happens next is very largely up to him.david attenborough: Closing lines
How great hath been the number of those who have falsely laid claim to a cause within Islám, and ye followed in their footsteps without having witnessed a single proof. What evidence can ye then produce in the presence of your Lord, if ye do but meditate a while?Take ye good heed in your night lest ye be a cause of sadness to any soul, whether ye be able to discover proofs in him or not, that haply on the Day of Resurrection ye may not grieve Him within Whose grasp lieth every proof. And when ye do not discern God’s testimony in a person, he will verily fail in manifesting the power of Truth; and God is sufficient to deal with him. Indeed on no account should ye sadden any person; surely God will put him to the proof and bring him to account. It behooveth you to cling to the testimony of your own Faith and to observe the ordinances laid down in the Bayán.báb: XVIII, 3
Perhaps 'tis not strictly in accordance with the evidence ... but even the damned may salute the eloquence of Mr. Webster.stephen vincent benét: Mr. Scratch (Winged Man)
'What do you mean by "a man like me"?' he [Philip Trent] demanded with a sort of fierceness. 'Do you take me for a man without any normal instincts? I don't say you impress people as a simple, transparent sort of character — what Mr Calvin Bunner calls a case of openwork; I don't say a stranger might not think you capable of wickedness, if there was good evidence for it: but I say that a man who, after seeing you and being in your atmosphere, could associate you with the kind of abomination I imagined is a fool — the kind of fool who is afraid to trust his senses.'Edmund Clerihew Bentley: Chapter XIII: "Eruption"
I know that the right kind of leader for the Labour Party is a kind of desiccated calculating-machine who must not in any way permit himself to be swayed by indignation. If he sees suffering, privation or injustice, he must not allow it to move him, for that would be evidence of the lack of proper education or of absence of self-control. He must speak in calm and objective accents and talk about a dying child in the same way as he would about the pieces inside an internal combustion engine.Aneurin Bevan: Tribune Rally, 29 September 1954, in response to Clement Attlee's wish for a non-emotional response to German rearmament. The remark 'desiccated calculating-machine' is often taken as a Bevan jibe against Hugh Gaitskell who became Labour Party leader the following year.
They are going to kill me. It doesn't matter what evidence you or anyone comes up with. They are going to murder me for murder I didn't commit.zulfikar ali bhutto: Speaking to a his daughter Benazir Bhutto, as quoted in her book Daughter of the East (1989).
There are people who just don't believe in the existence of a god. I don't know why because clearly, there is strong evidence that there's a god. But I believe that you serve all the people, not just those who profess to have faith but those with little or no faith. That's how you convert them.The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer, CNN, October 30, 2008  YouTube video