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Isaac Watts Quotes


An English theologian, logician, and a prolific and popular hymnwriter.
(1674 - 1748)

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A dogmatical spirit inclines a man to be censorious of his neighbors. - Everyone of his opinions appears to him written as with sunbeams, and he grows angry that his neighbors do not see it in the same light. - He is tempted to disdain his correspondents as men of low and dark understanding because they do not believe what he does.
 

Acquaint yourself with your own ignorance.
 

Acquire a government over your ideas, that they may come down when they are called, and depart when they are bidden.
 

Do not hover always on the surface of things, nor take up suddenly with mere appearances; but penetrate into the depth of matters, as far as your time and circumstances allow, especially in those things which relate to your profession.
 

Earth, thou great footstool of our God, who reigns on high; thou fruitful source of all our raiment, life, and food; our house, our parent, and our nurse.
[Earth]
 

Every one of his opinions appears to himself to be written with sunbeams.
 

Fairest of lights above! thou sun whose beams adorn the spheres, and with unwearied swiftness move, to form the circle of our years.
[Sun]
 

Fancy and humor, early and constantly indulged, may expect an old age overrun with follies.
 

Flies, worms, and flowers exceed me still.
 

For Satan finds some mischief still For idle hands to do.
[Idleness]
 

Hark! from the tombs a doleful sound.
 

His rays are all gold, and his beauties are best, as painting the skies he sinks down in the West, and foretells a bright rising again.
 

How doth the little busy bee Improve each shining hour, And gather honey all the day From every opening flower.
 

Hush, my dear, lie still and slumber, Holy angels guard thy bed! Heavenly blessings without number Gently falling on thy head.
[Sleep]
 

I would not change my blest estate for all the world calls good or great.
 

It was a saying of the ancients, that "truth lies in a well"; and to carry on the metaphor, we may justly say, that logic supplies us with steps whereby we may go down to reach the water.
[Logic]
 

Learning to trust is one of life's most difficult tasks.
 

Let me be dressed fine as I will, Flies, worms, and flowers, exceed me still.
 

Maintain a constant watch at all times against a dogmatical spirit: fix not your assent to any proposition in a firm and unalterable manner, till you have some firm and unalterable ground for it, and till you have arrived at some clear and sure evidence.
 

May I govern my passions with absolute sway, and grow wiser and better as life wears away.
 


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