As it is the chief concern of wise men to retrench the evils of life by the reasonings of philosophy, it is the employment of fools to multiply them by the sentiments of superstition.
To be free from evil thoughts is God's best gift.
It is a great evil not to be able to bear an evil.
It is some compensation for great evils, that they enforce great lessons.
All physical evils are so many beacon lights to warn us from vice.
The existence of evil, as Whately well says, is the great theological difficulty; and the apparent want of success of good men in overcoming it, is but one branch of this difficulty.
Much that we call evil is really good in disguise; and we should not quarrel rashly with adversities not yet understood, nor overlook the mercies often bound up in them.
If we could annihilate evil we should annihilate hope, and hope is the avenue of faith.
By the very constitution of our nature, moral evil is its own curse.
Even in evil, that dark cloud that hangs over creation, we discern rays of light and hope, and gradually come to see, in suffering and temptation, proofs and instruments of the sublimest purposes of wisdom and love.
All evil, in fact the very existence of evil, is inexplicable till we refer to the fatherhood of God.—It hangs a huge blot in the universe till the orb of divine love rises behind it.—In that we detect its meaning.—It appears to us but a finite shadow, as it passes across the disk of infinite light.
In the history of man it has been very generally the case, that when evils have grown insufferable they have touched the point of cure.
This is the course of every evil deed, that, propagating still it brings forth evil.
As there is much beast and some devil in man, so there is some angel and some God in him.—The beast and devil may be conquered, but in this life are never destroyed.
There is this good in real evils,—they deliver us, while they last, from the petty despotism of all that were imaginary.
Evils in the journey of life are like the hills which alarm travelers on their road.—Both appear great at a distance, but when we approach them we find they are far less insurmountable than we had conceived.
There are three modes of bearing the ills of life: by indifference, which is the most common; by philosophy, which is the most ostentatious; and by religion, which is the most effectual.
We cannot do evil to others without doing it to ourselves.
The first evil choice or act is linked to the second; and each one to the one that follows, both by the tendency of our evil nature and by the power of habit, which holds us as by a destiny.—As Lessing says, "Let the devil catch you but by a single hair, and you are his forever."
The first lesson of history, is, that evil is good.
Every evil to which we do not succumb is a benefactor.—As the Sandwich Islander believes that the strength and valor of the enemy he kills passes into himself, so we gain the strength of the temptation we resist.
If you do what you should not, you must bear what you would not.
He who does evil that good may come, pays a toll to the devil to let him into heaven.
It is a proof of our natural bias to evil, that in all things good, gain is harder and slower than loss; but in all things bad or evil, getting is quicker and easier than getting rid of them.
Evil is wrought by want of thought, as well as by want of heart.
With every exertion the best of men can do but a moderate amount of good but it seems in the power of the most contemptible individual to do incalculable mischief.
The lives of the best of us are spent in choosing between evils.
If we rightly estimate what we call good and evil, we shall find it lies much in comparison.
For every evil there is a remedy, or there is not; if there is one I try to find it; and if there is not, I never mind it.
Many have puzzled themselves about the origin of evil. I am content to observe that there is evil, and that there is a way to escape from it, and with this I begin and end.
We sometimes learn mere from the sight of evil than from an example of good; and it is well to accustom ourselves to profit by the evil which is so common, while that which is good is so rare.
Evil is but the shadow, that, in this world, always accompanies good.—You may have a world without shadow, but it will be a world without light—a mere dim, twilight world. If you would deepen the intensity of the light, you must be content to bring into deeper blackness and more distinct and definite outline, the shade that accompanies it.
The truest definition of evil is that which represents it as something contrary to nature.—Evil is evil because it is unnatural.—A vine which should bear olive-berries—an eye to which blue seems yellow, would be diseased.—An unnatural mother, an unnatural son, an unnatural act, are the strongest terms of condemnation.
Physical evils destroy themselves, or they destroy us.
Not to return one good office for another is inhuman; but to return evil for good is diabolical. There are too many even of this sort, who, the more they owe, the more they hate.
The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.
There is nothing truly evil, but what is within us; the rest is cither natural or accidental.
Never let a man imagine that he can pursue a good end by evil means, without sinning against his own soul.—The evil effect on himself is certain.
As surely as God is good, so surely there is no such thing as necessary evil.
There is some soul of goodness in things evil, would men observantly distil it out.
He who is in evil, is also in the punishment of evil.
Imaginary evils soon become real by indulging our reflections on them; as he who in a melancholy fancy sees something like a face on the wall or the wainscot, can, by two or three touches with a lead pencil, make it look visible, and agreeing with what he fancied.
There are thousands hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.
Good has but one enemy, the evil; but the evil has two enemies, the good and itself.
All evils natural, are moral goods; all discipline, indulgence on the whole.
Evil is in antagonism with the entire creation.