It is the confession, not the priest, that gives us absolution.
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- A man’s very highest moment is, I have no doubt at all, when he kneels in the dust, and beats his breast, and tells all the sins of his life.
- How strange a thing this is! The Priest telleth me that the Soul is worth all the gold in the world, and the merchants say that it is not worth a clipped piece of silver.
- Who is that man over there? I don’t know him. What is he doing? Is he a conspirator? Have you searched him? Give him till tomorrow to confess, then hang him! — hang him!
- People who love only once in their lives are shallow people. What they call their loyalty, and their fidelity, I call either the lethargy of custom or their lack of imagination. Faithfulness is to the emotional life what consistency is to the life of the intellect — simply a confession of failures.
- Absolute catholicity of taste is not without its dangers. It is only an auctioneer who should admire all schools of art.
- One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed, but by the punishments that the good have inflicted; and a community is infinitely more brutalized by the habitual employment of punishment than it is by the occasional occurrence of crime.