Sri Yukteswar used to poke gentle fun at the commonly inadequate conceptions of renunciation."A beggar cannot renounce wealth," Master would say. "If a man laments: 'My business has failed; my wife has left me; I will renounce all and enter a monastery,' to what worldly sacrifice is he referring? He did not renounce wealth and love; they renounced him!"Saints like Gandhi, on the other hand, have made not only tangible material sacrifices, but also the more difficult renunciation of selfish motive and private goal, merging their inmost being in the stream of humanity as a whole.
If we desire to do what will please God, and what will help men, we presently find ourselves taken out of our narrow habits of thought and action; we f1nd new elements of our nature called into activity; we are no longer running along a narrow track of selfish habit.james freeman clarke
Beneath a mask of selfish tranquility nothing exists except bitterness and boredom. I am one of those whom suffering has made empty and frivolous: each night in my dreams I pull the scab off a wound; each day, vacuous and habit-ridden, I help it re-form.cyril connolly
You can't build marriage on a foundation of selfish hedonism, because that would be to promise people only roses, and marriage is also thorns.alan keyes
A love to Christ which is so cowardly and selfish that it is unwilling to proclaim by a public confession its faith in Him who hung before all the world crucified for sinners, is a love which is hardly worth the name.abbott eliot kittredge
California is a queer place — in a way, it has turned its back on the world, and looks into the void Pacific. It is absolutely selfish, very empty, but not false, and at least, not full of false effort.d. h. lawrence
Next to the very young, I suppose the very old are the most selfish.william makepeace thackeray
All who strive to live for something beyond mere selfish aims find their capacities for doing good very inadequate to their aspirations. They do so much less than they want to do, and so much less than they, at the outset, expected to do, that their lives, viewed retrospectively, inevitably look like failure.lydia maria child
It is a curious truth and yet a truth forced upon us by daily observation that it is not the women who have suffered most who are the unhappy women. A state of permanent unhappiness not the morbid, half-cherished melancholy of youth, which generally wears off with wiser years, but that settled, incurable discontent and dissatisfaction with all things and all people, which we see in some women, is, with very rare exceptions, at once the index and the exponent of a thoroughly selfish character.dinah maria mulock
Love is a virtue; it grows stronger and purer and less selfish by applying it to what it loathes; but theft is a vice involving the slave-idea that one's neighbor is superior to oneself.aleister crowley
We cannot forget that we live and have been living for many years in the midst of an empire. We cannot forget that the different provinces of India are gradually coming closer to one another and a new nationality which comprises not only the different provinces but the whole of India is growing up in our midst and we cannot forget that our interests, even our selfish interests, our hopes, our ambitions are indissolubly connected with the interest of the empire.chittaranjan das
Myth: There’s conflict between selfish free markets and a benevolent world of human sympathy.ted malloch
Courage… is not a selfish attribute: it is only possible if you are pursuing a wider and more worthy goal.ted malloch
Deep down, everything boils down ("au fond tout se ramène", Fr.) to the following simple question; Do we really want justice and the realization in this world of higher principles, or else do we want to serve selfish, short-sighted (à courte vue", Fr.) interests, which, when all is said and done, are also prejudicial (or detrimental, or harmful) to those very same that pursue them?african spir
Apart from selfish reasons, such as fear of punishments, fear of blame, of dishonour, etc, there remains only two motives that can stop (or prevent, "empâecher", Fr.) men from acting badly; the natural sense of commiseration (or "sympathy", - "commisération", Fr.) for one's fellow men - compassion, and the influence of education, by association of ideas ("par l'association d'idées", Fr.) - habit.african spir
(Generally or) Men in general are too inclined to let themselves be overawed by what is quantitatively great. It is thus that even thoughtful minds let themselves be impressed ("éblouis", Fr.) by the strenght of Napoléon 1st, to much so that (to the point that) seeing (to see) in his person something august (or majestic), when indeed (in fact) he only have had ("il n'ait eu que", Fr.) selfish aims (or plans). Half the earth ("globe terrrstre", Fr.) is put to fire and sword to obtain to a man the pleasant sensation of his own absolute power.african spir
The selfish spirit of commerce knows no country, and feels no passion or principle but that of gain.
Throughout history, no tyrant ever rose to power except on the claim of representing ``the common good.´´ Napoleon ``served the common good´´ of France. Hitler is ``serving the common good´´ of Germany. Horrors which no man would dare consider for his own selfish sake are perpetrated with a clear conscience by ``altruists´´ who justify themselves by-the common good.
asceticism is giving up selfish activities as poets know & the wise declare renunciation is giving up fruits of action
Our object now, as then, is to vindicate the principles of peace and justice in the life of the world as against selfish and autocratic power, and to set up among the really free and self-governed peoples of the world such a concert of purpose and of action as will henceforth insure the observance of those principles.
This is always the way in which the reality of Christian conversion evidences itself. It makes the selfish man charitable: the churlish, liberal; and implants in the soul, which hitherto has cared only for the things belonging to himself, a disposition to seek also the things of others.
The great men of antiquity Cato , Brutus , Cassius , Antony , and Otho forgot that they had obligations to their race as well as to themselves, when, in the selfish spirit of a pagan philosophy, they considered themselves entitled to put an end to their existence, and remove themselves from the world.
California is a queer place in a way, it has turned its back on the world, and looks into the void Pacific. It is absolutely selfish, very empty, but not false, and at least, not full of false effort.
Because if this is gonna be a Christian nation that doesn't help the poor, either we've got to pretend that Jesus was just as selfish as we are, or we've got to acknowledge that he commanded us to love the poor and serve the needy without condition and then admit that we just don't want to do it.stephen colbert