A little righteous anger really brings out the best in the American
personality. Our nation was born when 56 patriots got mad enough to sign
the Declaration of Independence. We put a man on the moon because
Sputnik made us mad at being number two in space. Getting mad in a
constructive way is good for the soul- and the country.
Among life's perpetually charming questions is whether the truly evil do
more harm than the self-righteous and wrong.
An orgy looks particularly alluring seen through the mists of righteous
Arguing with anonymous strangers on the Internet is a sucker's game
because they almost always turn out to be- or to be indistinguishable
from- self-righteous sixteen-year-olds possessing infinite amounts of
But the greatest menace to our civilization today is the conflict
between giant organized systems of self-righteousness- each system only
too delighted to find that the other is wicked- each only too glad that
the sins give it the pretext for still deeper hatred and animosity.
Conventionality is not morality. Self-righteousness is not religion. To
attack the first is not to assail the last.
Democracy is an experiment, and the right of the majority to rule is no
more inherent than the right of the minority to rule; and unless the
majority represents sane, righteous, unselfish public sentiment, it has
no inherent right.
-William Allen White
God knows it is emotionally satisfying to be righteous with that
righteousness that nourishes itself on the blood of sinners. But God
also knows that what is emotionally satisfying can be spiritually
-William Sloane Coffin, Jr.
Honesty is the cruelest game of all, because not only can you hurt
someone- and hurt them to the bone- you can feel self-righteous about it
at the same time.
-Dave Van Ronk
I celebrate everyone's religious holidays. If it's good enough for the
righteous, it's good enough for the self-righteous, I always say.
I do believe that America's deepest political sickness is that it is a
If a man aspires towards a righteous life, his first act of abstinence
is from injury to animals.
If I have to choose between peace and righteousness, I'll choose
If I were not an atheist, I would believe in a God who would choose to
save people on the basis of the totality of their lives and not the
pattern of their words. I think he would prefer an honest and righteous
atheist to a TV preacher whose every word is God, God, God, and whose
every deed is foul, foul, foul.
If we had any nerve at all, if we had any real balls as a society, or
whatever you need, whatever quality you need, real character, we would
make an effort to really address the wrongs in this society, righteously.
My dear sister, I hope, when God Almighty in his righteous providence
shall take me out of time into eternity, that it will be by a flash of
-James Otis, Jr.
Neither the adventure of goodness nor the pursuit of righteousness gets
-Eugene H. Peterson
Righteousness cannot be born until self-righteousness is dead.
Righteousness is easy in retrospect.
-Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.
Self-righteous people can talk themselves into forgetting they are part
of a civilization. They can then feed on that culture, bringing it down.
It's happened many times in the past. It could happen to us.
Self-righteousness is a loud din raised to drown the voice of guilt
Self-righteousness is the inevitable fruit of simple moral judgments.
The company of just and righteous men is better than wealth and a rich
There is nothing that robs a righteous cause of its strength more than a
These people fail to realize that it is on the inside that God must be
defended, not on the outside. They should direct their anger at
themselves. For evil in the open is but evil from within that has been
let out. The main battlefield for good is not the open ground of the
public arena but the small clearing of each heart. Meanwhile, the lot of
widows and homeless children is very hard, and it is to their defense,
not God's, that the self-righteous should rush.
-Yann Martel (Life of Pi)
To be able to destroy with good conscience, to be able to behave badly
and call your bad behavior 'righteous indignation'- this is the height
of psychological luxury, the most delicious of moral treats.
Vegetarianism is harmless enough, though it is apt to fill a man with
wind and self-righteousness.
We are obligated to be more scrupulous in fulfilling the commandment of
charity than any other positive commandment because charity is the sign
of a righteous man.
Categories: Quotes on a topic