Top 20 Irish Philosophers Quotes

Last updated on Feb 14th, 2024

Top 20 Irish Philosophers Quotes

From John Toland and George Berkeley to Richard Kearney and Kieran Egan, explore the best quotes from Irish philosophers about life, love, and the human condition.

We do not know what God is. God Himself does not know what He is because He is not anything. Literally God is not, because He transcends being. - John Scotus Eriugena Quotes
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We do not know what God is. God Himself does not know what He is because He is not anything. Literally God is not, because He transcends being.John Scotus Eriugena, in Faith of Our Fathers by Philip K. Dick (1967)

Even when we find not what we seek, we find something as well worth seeking as what we missed. - Robert Boyle Quotes
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Even when we find not what we seek, we find something as well worth seeking as what we missed.Robert Boyle, The works of the Honourable Robert Boyle (1772), Volume I, Page 353

Revelation was not a necessitating motive of assent, but a means of information. We should not confound the way whereby we come to the knowledge of a thing with the grounds we have to believe it. - John Toland (Christianity not Mysterious Quotes)
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Revelation was not a necessitating motive of assent, but a means of information. We should not confound the way whereby we come to the knowledge of a thing with the grounds we have to believe it.John Toland, Christianity not Mysterious (1696)

Few men think; yet all have opinions. - George Berkeley (Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous Quotes)
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Few men think; yet all have opinions.George Berkeley, Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous (1713)

Wisdom denotes the pursuing of the best ends by the best means. - Francis Hutcheson Quotes
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Wisdom denotes the pursuing of the best ends by the best means.Francis Hutcheson, An Inquiry into the Original of our Ideas of Beauty and Virtue (1725)

People will not look forward to posterity, who never look backward to their ancestors. - Edmund Burke Quotes
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People will not look forward to posterity, who never look backward to their ancestors.
Also known as: Those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it.Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France (1790)

The only and the simple remedy for the evils arising from these almost universal institutions of the domestic slavery of one half the human race, is utterly to eradicate them. Give men and women equal civil and political rights. - William Thompson Quotes
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The only and the simple remedy for the evils arising from these almost universal institutions of the domestic slavery of one half the human race, is utterly to eradicate them. Give men and women equal civil and political rights.William Thompson, An Inquiry into the principles of the Distribution of Wealth (1824)

He that is not aware of his ignorance, will be only misled by his knowledge. - Richard Whately Quotes
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He that is not aware of his ignorance, will be only misled by his knowledge.Richard Whately, Thoughts and Apophthegms from the Writings of Archbishop Whately (1856)

The general laws of Nature are not, for the most part, immediate objects of perception. - George Boole Quotes
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The general laws of Nature are not, for the most part, immediate objects of perception.George Boole, An Investigation of the Laws of Thought (1854)

My great panacea for making society at once better and more enjoyable would be to cultivate greater sincerity. - Frances Power Cobbe (The Duties of Women Quotes)
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My great panacea for making society at once better and more enjoyable would be to cultivate greater sincerity.Frances Power Cobbe, The Duties of Women (1881)

Our reasoning appears to become more accurate as our ignorance becomes more complete; that when we have embarked upon chaos we seem to drop down into a cosmos. - Francis Ysidro Edgeworth (The Philosophy of Chance Quotes)
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Our reasoning appears to become more accurate as our ignorance becomes more complete; that when we have embarked upon chaos we seem to drop down into a cosmos.Francis Ysidro Edgeworth, The Philosophy of Chance (1884)

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We must live before we can attain to either intelligence or control at all. We must sleep if we are not to find ourselves, at death, helplessly strange to the new conditions. And we must die before we can hope to advance to a broader understanding. - J. W. Dunne (An Experiment with Time Quotes)
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We must live before we can attain to either intelligence or control at all. We must sleep if we are not to find ourselves, at death, helplessly strange to the new conditions. And we must die before we can hope to advance to a broader understanding.J. W. Dunne, An Experiment with Time (1927)

Love is the extremely difficult realization that something other than oneself is real. - Iris Murdoch (Existentialists and Mystics: Writings on Philosophy and Literature Quotes)
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Love is the extremely difficult realization that something other than oneself is real.Iris Murdoch, Existentialists and Mystics: Writings on Philosophy and Literature (1997)

If you do not love, you will not be alive; if you love effectively, you will be killed. - Herbert McCabe (God Still Matters Quotes)
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If you do not love, you will not be alive; if you love effectively, you will be killed.Herbert McCabe, God Still Matters (2002)

God doesn't need to come down upon a mountain, for the mountain itself is the revelation. We only have to look at it and we will know how we should live. - John Moriarty (Nostos Quotes)
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God doesn’t need to come down upon a mountain, for the mountain itself is the revelation. We only have to look at it and we will know how we should live.John Moriarty, Nostos (2001)

Well-placed trust grows out of active inquiry rather than blind acceptance. - Onora O'Neill Quotes
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Well-placed trust grows out of active inquiry rather than blind acceptance.Onora O'Neill, Reith Lectures 2002: A Question of Trust

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The more you know about something the easier it is to be imaginative about it.Kieran Egan, https://www.educationthatinspires.ca

The social justice question is: does the state treat its citizens well and equally in selecting the order that it imposes? The political legitimacy question is: does the state treat its citizens well and equally in the way it imposes that order? - Philip Pettit (On The People's Terms: A Republican Theory and Model of Democracy Quotes)
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The social justice question is: does the state treat its citizens well and equally in selecting the order that it imposes? The political legitimacy question is: does the state treat its citizens well and equally in the way it imposes that order?Philip Pettit, On The People's Terms: A Republican Theory and Model of Democracy (2012)

If we possess narrative sympathy - enabling us to see the world from other's point of view - we cannot kill. If we do not, we cannot love. - Richard Kearney (On Stories Quotes)
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If we possess narrative sympathy – enabling us to see the world from other’s point of view – we cannot kill. If we do not, we cannot love.Richard Kearney, On Stories (2001)

True friends are not found on Facebook. They are those who provide light in the midst of darkness, who stay when the rest have run and who are always there despite the lapse of time. They don't ask anything of us, except to be their friend. - Mark Dooley Quotes
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True friends are not found on Facebook. They are those who provide light in the midst of darkness, who stay when the rest have run and who are always there despite the lapse of time. They don’t ask anything of us, except to be their friend. Mark Dooley, Moral Matters (December 4, 2013)