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Quotations on Ideals

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An idealist believes the short run doesn't count. A cynic believes the long run doesn't matter. A realist believes that what is done or left undone in the short run determines the long run.

~ Sydney J. Harris

Some men can live up to their loftiest ideals without ever going higher than a basement.

~ Theodore Roosevelt

An idealist is one who, on noticing that a rose smells better than a cabbage, concludes that it will also make better soup.

~ H.L. Mencken

We build statues out of snow, and weep to see them melt.

~ Sir Walter Scott

The true ideal is not opposed to the real but lies in it; and blessed are the eyes that find it.

~ James Russell Lowell

Man is born a predestined idealist, for he is born to act. To act is to affirm the worth of an end, and to persist in affirming the worth of an end is to make an ideal.

~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

Ideals are thoughts. So long as they exist merely as thoughts, the power in them remains ineffective.

~ Albert Schweitzer

Ideals are like stars. You will not succeed in touching them with your hands, but, like the seafaring man, you choose them as your guides, and, following them, you will reach your destiny.

~ Carl Schurz

The idealist is incorrigible. If he is turned out of his heaven, he makes an ideal out of his hell.

~ Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

Do not use that foreign word 'ideals.' We have that excellent word 'lies.'

~ Hendrik Ibsen

Words without actions are the assassins of idealism.

~ Herbert Hoover

In our ideals we unwittingly reveal our vices.

~ Jean Rostand

When they come downstairs from their Ivory Tower, idealists are apt to walk straight into the gutter.

~ Logan P. Smith

What we need most, is not so much to realize the ideal as to idealize the real.

~ H.F. Hedge

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