“Happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected.”
~ George Washington

“Achievement of your happiness is the only moral purpose of your life, and that happiness, not pain or mindless self-indulgence, is the proof of your moral integrity, since it is the proof and the result of your loyalty to the achievement of your values.”
~ Ayn Rand

“The purpose of morality is to teach you, not to suffer and die, but to enjoy yourself and live.”
~ Ayn Rand

“About morals, I know only that what is moral is what you feel good after and what is immoral is what you feel bad after.”
~ Ernest Hemingway

“As a child I was taught that to tell the truth was often painful. As an adult I have learned that not to tell the truth is more painful, and that the fear of telling the truth—whatever the truth may be—that fear is the most painful sensation of a moral life.”
~ June Jordan

“Goodness is the only investment that never fails.” …and… “Nature is goodness crystallized.”
~ Henry David Thoreau

“If you would convince a man that he does wrong, do right. But do not care to convince him. Men will believe what they see. Let them see.”
~ Henry David Thoreau

“Ethics begins when we are free: it is freedom itself, when that freedom is considered and controlled.”
~ André Comte-Sponville

How can you be happy unless you have some self-respect? And how can you respect yourself unless you control yourself, master yourself, overcome your failings? … Ethically speaking, it’s pointless wishing you were someone else. You can dream of being rich, healthy, good-looking, happy … But it is absurd to dream of being virtuous. Whether you are a villain or a good person is for you and you alone to decide: you are worth precisely what you want.
~ André Comte-Sponville

The essence of morality is a questioning about morality; and the decisive move of human life is to use ceaselessly all light to look for the origin of the opposition between good and evil.”
~ Georges Bataille

“The only immorality … is not to do what one has to do when one has to do it.”
~ Jean Anouilh

“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts: therefore, guard accordingly, and take care that you entertain no notions unsuitable to virtue and reasonable nature.”
~ Marcus Aurelius

“Happiness is inward and not outward; and so it does not depend on what we have, but on what we are.”
~ Henry Van Dyke

“Think of yourself as two people, and one of them is inside of you, and he’s a scorekeeper. And he keeps score of your idea of the world. … And when you have a conflict with your scorekeeper, that’s unhappiness. Happiness is being completely in sync with your own perception of goodness.
~ Will Smith

“. . . happiness is the highest good, being a realization and perfect practice of virtue, which some can attain, while others have little or none of it. . . .”
~ Aristotle

Note: Posted on 1-26 for 1-25.


  1. Steve
    Posted Saturday January 27, 2007 at 3:48 am | Permalink

    “Goodness is the only investment that never fails.”

    … I like that one.

  2. Posted Saturday March 17, 2007 at 12:15 am | Permalink


    rand was a quack…
    aristotle was talking about something that doesn’t resemble anything like the happiness you are thinking of…
    a psychotic could satisfy the hemingway quote if chopping people made him happy…

    happiness is important, and so are morals…
    but you sure as heck better have better reasons than ‘it makes me happy’ to justify your actions on moral grounds…

    but hey…keep the quotes coming!