Just Above Sunset
Volume 5, Number 10
March 11, 2007

Understanding Things

 The world as seen from Just Above Sunset -

"Notes on how things seem from out here in Hollywood..."

Quotes for the week of February 25, 2007 - Understanding Things

"You see, a wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat." - Albert Einstein

"Grown ups never understand anything for themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them." - Antoine de Saint-Exupery

"Bistromathics itself is simply a revolutionary new way of understanding the behavior of numbers. Just as Einstein observed that space was not an absolute but depended on the observer's movement in space, and that time was not an absolute, but depended on the observer's movement in time, so it is now realized that numbers are not absolute, but depend on the observer's movement in restaurants." Douglas Noel Adams, Life, the Universe and Everything

"Being in politics is like coaching football. You have to be smart enough to understand the game and dumb enough to think it's important." - Eugene McCarthy

"I can't understand why a person will take a year to write a novel when he can easily buy one for a few dollars." - Fred Allen

"Every sentence I utter must be understood not as an affirmation, but as a question." - Niels Bohr

"In science one tries to tell people, in such a way as to be understood by everyone, something that no one ever knew before. But in poetry, it's the exact opposite." - Paul A. M. Dirac

"I do not pretend to understand the universe. It is a great deal bigger than I am." - Tom Stoppard

"We possess only the happiness we are able to understand." - Count Maurice Maeterlinck

"And so, to the end of history, murder shall breed murder, always in the name of right and honor and peace, until the gods are tired of blood and create a race that can understand." - George Bernard Shaw, Caesar and Cleopatra

"Everything in the world has a hidden meaning. Men, animals, trees, stars - they are all hieroglyphics. When you see them you do not understand them. You think they are really men, animals, trees, stars. It is only years later that you understand." - Nikos Kazantzakis

"Nothing worse could happen to one than to be completely understood." - Carl Jung

"In mathematics you don't understand things. You just get used to them." - John von Neumann

"My goal is simple. It is complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all." - Stephen Hawking

UNDERSTANDING, n. A cerebral secretion that enables one having it to know a house from a horse by the roof on the house. Its nature and laws have been exhaustively expounded by Locke, who rode a house, and Kant, who lived in a horse. - Ambrose Bierce

"A child of five would understand this. Send someone to fetch a child of five." - Groucho Marx

"The mere understanding, however useful and indispensable, is the meanest faculty in the human mind and the most to be distrusted." - Thomas De Quincey, On the Knocking at the Gate in Macbeth

"You must understand that seeing is believing, but also know that believing is seeing." - Denis Waitley

"I can't understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones." - John Cage

"What a delightful thing is the conversation of specialists! One understands absolutely nothing and it's charming." - Edgar Degas

"Truth can never be told so as to be understood, and not be believed." - William Blake

"I don't understand you. You don't understand me. What else do we have in common?" - Ashleigh Brilliant

"There would be no society if living together depended upon understanding each other." - Eric Hoffer

"There is really nothing you must be. And there is nothing you must do. There is really nothing you must have. And there is nothing that you must know. There is really nothing you must become. However, it helps to understand that fire burns, and when it rains, the earth gets wet." - Robert Fulghum

"In human intercourse the tragedy begins, not when there is a misunderstanding about words, but when silence is not understood." - Henry David Thoreau

"It requires wisdom to understand wisdom; the music is nothing if the audience is deaf." - Walter Lippmann

"We have come out of the time when obedience, the acceptance of discipline, intelligent courage and resolution were most important, into that more difficult time when it is a man's duty to understand his world rather than simply fight for it." - Ernest Hemingway

"It takes a long time to understand nothing." - Edward Dahlberg

"I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word of what I am saying." - Oscar Wilde

"As I said just now, the world has gone past me. I don't blame it; but I no longer understand it. Tradesmen are not the same as they used to be, apprentices are not the same, business is not the same, business commodities are not the same. Seven-eighths of my stock is old-fashioned. I am an old-fashioned man in an old-fashioned shop, in a street that is not the same as I remember it. I have fallen behind the time, and am too old to catch it again." - Charles Dickens, Dombey and Son

"The theoretical understanding of the world, which is the aim of philosophy, is not a matter of great practical importance to animals, or to savages, or even to most civilized men." - Bertrand Russell

[Understanding Things]

Last updated Saturday, March 10, 2007, 10:30 pm Pacific Time

All text and photos, unless otherwise noted, Copyright © 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 - Alan M. Pavlik