Kobe Bryant Qotes

Kobe Bryant Quotes

Hailed as one of the best and most prolific basketball players of all time by NBA commissioner Adam Silver, the American professional basketball player, Kobe “Bean” Bryant, did not always intend to pursue a career in basketball. In fact, he joined the rap band CHEITAW in high school before embarking on a basketball career.

Born in Philadelphia in 1978 as the youngest of three children and the only son of professional basketball player Joe Bryant and Pamela Cox Bryant, he spent most of his childhood in Italy (his father quit the NBA when Kobe was 6 and moved the family to Rieti, Reggio Calabria, Pistoia and Reggio Emilia so as to allow him to continue his non-NBA professional basketball career).

Even though Bryant learnt to play basketball at the tender age of 3, he did not take the sport seriously until moving to Reggio Emilia. At the age of 13, the entire family returned to Philadelphia. At the end of high school, Bryant was the first guard drafted directly from high school (after earning recognition for his extremely successful tenure in his high school team in Lower Merion High School in the Philadelphia suburb of Ardmore ) to the Los Angeles Lakers where he remained throughout his successful 20-year NBA career.

In addition to winning five NBA championships, he was selected as an All Star team member 18 times, was declared one of the best defensive players in the NBA league and member of the coveted All-Defensive Team. He also led the NBA in terms of scoring twice and was posthumously elected to the NBA Hall of Fame in April 2020.

He continues to remain the all-time high scorer in the Lakers’ history and played in the US national basketball team which won the Summer Olympics in both 2008 and 2012. He continues to be tied with Bob Pettit for the most All-Star Game MVP Awards. In addition to a successful basketball career, he also dipped into acting which ultimately earned him an Academy Award for the Best Animated Short Film in 2018 for Dear Basketball.

Despite being plagued with several injuries during his professional career, he continued to strive forward from 1996 to 2016 when he decided to call it quits. He was taken from us too soon after dying in a helicopter crash in 2020 with his young daughter Gianna, leaving behind his widow Vanessa and daughters Natalia, Capri and Bianka.

Did you know:

  • That “Kobe” was named after a famous Japanese beef his parents noticed on a restaurant menu?
  • His middle name, Bean, derives from his father’s nickname ‘Jellybean’?
  • That he learnt to speak fluent Italian during his family’s stay in Italy?
  • That he learnt to play basketball also thanks to videos sent from his grandfather of NBA games and European films about sports that he meticulously studied?
  • That he could also play soccer?
  • That he was the first guard drafted directly after high school graduation; as he was 17 at the time, he had to co-sign his agreement with the Lakers until he turned 18?
  • That he met his wife Vanessa during his short stint as a rapper when she appeared as a background dancer in a music video?
  • That he also wrote books and started acting after a one-episode appearance in Moesha starring Brandy?

Motivational Kobe Bryant Quotes

“Once you know what failure feels like, determination chases success.”  – Kobe Bryant

“The most important thing is to try and inspire people so that they can be great in whatever they want to do.” – Kobe Bryant

“The last time I was intimidated was when I was 6 years old in karate class. I was an orange belt and the instructor ordered me to fight a black belt who was a couple years older and a lot bigger. I was scared s—less. I mean, I was terrified and he kicked my ass. But then I realized he didn’t kick my ass as bad as I thought he was going to and that there was nothing really to be afraid of. That was around the time I realized that intimidation didn’t really exist if you’re in the right frame of mind.” – Kobe Bryant

“I can’t relate to lazy people. We don’t speak the same language. I don’t understand you. I don’t want to understand you.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’m reflective only in the sense that I learn to move forward. I reflect with a purpose” – Kobe Bryant

“The topic of leadership is a touchy one. A lot of leaders fail because they don’t have the bravery to touch that nerve or strike that chord. Throughout my years, I haven’t had that fear.” – Kobe Bryant

“When you make a choice and say ‘come hell or high water’ I am going to be this, then you should be surprised when you are that. It should not be something that feels intoxicating or out of character because you have seen this moment for so long that…when that moment comes, of course it is here because it has been here the whole time because it has been in your mind the whole time.” – Kobe Bryant

“When we are saying this cannot be accomplished, this cannot be done, then we are short-changing ourselves. My brain, it cannot process failure. It will not process failure. Because if I have to sit there and face myself and tell myself ‘you are a failure,’ I think that is almost worse than dying”– Kobe Bryant

“The beauty in being blessed with talent is rising above doubters to create a beautiful moment.” – Kobe Bryant

“There’s a choice that we have to make as people, as individuals. If you want to be great at something, there’s a choice you have to make. We all can be masters at our craft, but you have to make a choice. What I mean by that is, there are inherent sacrifices that come along with that. Family time, hanging out with friends, being a great friend, being a great son, nephew, whatever the case may be. There are sacrifices that come along with making that decision.” – Kobe Bryant

“I have self-doubt. I have insecurity. I have fear of failure. I have nights when I show up at the arena and I’m like, ‘My back hurts, my feet hurt, my knees hurt. I don’t have it. I just want to chill.’ We all have self-doubt. You don’t deny it, but you also don’t capitulate to it. You embrace it.” – Kobe Bryant

“It doesn’t bother me at all. Do I hold any hard feelings? Not at all. Life is too short to sit around and hold grudges. I don’t hold any whatsoever.” – Kobe Bryant

“If you don’t believe in yourself, no one will do it for you” – Kobe Bryant

“The moment you give up, is the moment you let someone else win” – Kobe Bryant

“Pain doesn’t tell you when you ought to stop. Pain is the little voice in your head that tries to hold you back because it knows if you continue you will change. Don’t let it stop you from being who you can be. Exhaustion tells you when you ought to stop. You only reach your limit when you can go no further.”– Kobe Bryant

“Sports is such a great teacher. I think of everything they’ve taught me: camaraderie, humility, how to resolve differences.” – Kobe Bryant

“Dedication sees dreams come true.” – Kobe Bryant

“Use your success, wealth and influence to put them in the best position to realize their own dreams and find their true purpose. Put them through school, set them up with job interviews and help them become leaders in their own right. Hold them to the same level of hard work and dedication that it took for you to get to where you are now, and where you will eventually go.” – Kobe Bryant

“I played through the sweat and hurt
Not because challenge called me
But because YOU called me.
I did everything for YOU
Because that’s what you do
When someone makes you feel as
Alive as you’ve made me feel.” –– Kobe Bryant

“The examples are endless but my philosophy is simple. Once I knew my seed, I was able to discover my muse and my purpose for being was crystal clear.” –– Kobe Bryant

“Either way, I refuse to change what I am. A lion has to eat. Run with me or run from me.” – Kobe Bryant

“Being passive aggressive in this competition means you’re fine with simply going with the flow and unwilling to disturb the calm waters of the game to accomplish your goals.” – Kobe Bryant

“Everything I saw, heard, read, or felt was viewed through the lens of growing as a basketball player. This perspective makes me curious about everything, makes everything interesting, and means that life is a living library where all I need to do is pay attention.” – Kobe Bryant

“This is the moment I accept the most challenging times will always be behind me AND in front of me.” – Kobe Bryant

“You need to figure out a way to invest in the future of your family and friends. This sounds simple, and you may think it’s a no-brainer, but take some time to think on it further. I said INVEST. I did not say GIVE.” – Kobe Bryant

“What a journey this has been. Setting this mark is a huge honor. I’m aware of Father Time’s curfew. He has sent me to my room to brush my teeth before he tucks me in, but I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t walk to the bathroom slowly. I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t act as if someone misplaced the toothpaste. I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t brush every tooth twice, brush my tongue three times, floss until my gums bleed and rinse with mouthwash until the inside of my mouth burns and then goes numb.” – Kobe Bryant

“Trust me, setting things up right from the beginning will avoid a ton of tears and heartache…” – Kobe Bryant

“I create my own path. It was straight and narrow. I looked at it this way: you were either in my way, or out of it. If you were standing between me and the game, I was going to knock you on your back and not feel bad about it. I was unapologetically me. That’s all I ever wanted to be I was never worried about my reputation- that’s how I earned one. That’s how I became the Black Mamba.” – Kobe Bryant

“The odd thing is that I wound up learning more about the world around me by having a singular focus inside of me.” – Kobe Bryant

“Determination silences doubters.” – Kobe Bryant

“We can always kind of be average and do what’s normal. I’m not in this to do what’s normal.” – Kobe Bryant

“Losers visualize the penalties of failure. Winners visualize the rewards of success.” – Kobe Bryant

“Passion is the fuel for success.”– Kobe Bryant

“Learn to love the hate. Embrace it. Enjoy it. You earned it. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and everyone should have one about you. Haters are a good problem to have. Nobody hates the good ones. They hate the great ones.” – Kobe Bryant

“Everything negative; pressure, challenges, is an opportunity for me to rise.”– Kobe Bryant

“To be an event, every single night. Something witnessed. Not just watched. I had a different drive. The kind that made people uneasy. Some people wanted me to come back down to earth. To come down to their level.To relax. But I couldn’t. It wasn’t in my DNA. Because to go where others have never gone, you have to do what others have never done.”– Kobe Bryant

“Be willing to sacrifice anything, but compromise nothing in your quest to be your best.” – Kobe Bryant

“If you are going to be a leader, you’re not going to please everybody. You got to hold people accountable, even if you have that moment of being uncomfortable.”– Kobe Bryant

“We all have self-doubt. You don’t deny it, but you also don’t capitulate to it. You embrace it.”– Kobe Bryant

“I saw things differently. I didn’t want to do what others had done. That didn’t drive me, didn’t get me in the gym before others got up. I wanted to do one better. Actually, I wanted to do a lot better. There were players I looked up to until I looked them square in the eyes. I know that one day, when I left the game, I didn’t actually want to leave. I wanted to leave my mark.” – Kobe Bryant

“The biggest dreams aren’t fueled by belief. They’re fueled by doubt.” – Kobe Bryant

“It’s the one thing you can control. You are responsible for how people remember you—or don’t. So don’t take it lightly. If you do it right, your game will live on in others. You’ll be imitated and emulated by those you played with, those you played against and those who never saw you play at all. So leave everything on the court. Leave the game better than you found it. And when it comes time for you to leave, leave a legend.” – Kobe Bryant

“We don’t quit, we don’t cower, we don’t run. We endure and conquer.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’ve shot too much from the time I was 8 years old. But ‘too much’ is a matter of perspective. Some people thought Mozart had too many notes in his compositions. Let me put it this way: I entertain people who say I shoot too much. I find it very interesting. Going back to Mozart, he responded to critics by saying there were neither too many notes or too few. There were as many as necessary.” – Kobe Bryant

“I don’t want to be the next Michael Jordan, I only want to be Kobe Bryant.” – Kobe Bryant

“Great things come from hard work and perseverance. No Excuses.” – Kobe Bryant

“Everyone looks at your watch and it represents who you are, your values and your personal style.” – Kobe Bryant

“Are you willing to push the right buttons even if it means being perceived as the villain? I’d rather be perceived as a winner than a good teammate. I wish they both went hand in hand all the time but that’s just not reality. I have nothing in common with lazy people who blame others for their lack of success.” – Kobe Bryant

“The most important thing is you must put everybody on notice that you’re here and you are for real. I’m not a player that is just going to come and go. I’m not a player that is going to make an All-Star team one time, two times. I’m here to be an all-time great. Once I made that commitment and said, ‘I want to be one of the greatest ever’, then the game became everything for me.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’m chasing perfection.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’ll do whatever it takes to win games, whether it’s sitting on a bench waving a towel, handing a cup of water to a teammate, or hitting the game-winning shot.” – Kobe Bryant

“I wanna be the best, simple, and plain.” – Kobe Bryant

“The important thing is that your teammates have to know you’re pulling for them and you really want them to be successful.” – Kobe Bryant

“What people see on court is another side of me; it’s not me.” – Kobe Bryant

“These young guys are playing checkers. I’m out there playing chess.” – Kobe Bryant

“Everything negative – pressure, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise.”- Kobe Bryant

“I want to learn how to become the best basketball player in the world. And if I’m going to learn that, I gotta learn from the best. Kids go to school to be doctors or lawyers, so forth and so on and that’s where they study. My place to study is from the best.”- Kobe Bryant

“If you’re afraid to fail, then you’re probably going to fail.”- Kobe Bryant

“I saw you come in and I wanted you to know that it doesn’t matter how hard you work, that I’m willing to work harder than you.”- Kobe Bryant

“My parents are my backbone. Still are. They’re the only group that will support you if you score zero or you score 40.”- Kobe Bryant

“From the beginning, I wanted to be the best. I had a constant craving, a yearning, to improve and be the best. I never needed any external forces to motivate me.”― Kobe Bryant

“People just don’t understand how obsessed I am with winning.”- Kobe Bryant

“After all, greatness is not for everybody.”― Kobe Bryant

“If you do not believe in yourself no one will do it for you.”- Kobe Bryant

“May you always remember to enjoy the road, especially when it’s a hard one.”― Kobe Bryant

“We psyche ourselves up too much. Like if you try to talk yourself into, ‘Oh, this is a big moment, this is a big shot,’ you’re putting a lot of pressure on yourself. You shot that shot hundreds and thousands of times. Just shoot another one.”― Kobe Bryant

“It’s hard for me to grasp the concept of somebody being nervous when I’m talking to them.” – Kobe Bryant

“I just got one more than Shaq. You can take that to the bank … You guys know how I am. I don’t forget anything.” – Kobe Bryant

“If I wanted to play, I’d still be playing for the Lakers. The health thing I could’ve figured out…I just don’t want to play anymore.” – Kobe Bryant

“There’s been a lot of talk of me being a one-man show but that’s simply not the case. We win games when I score 40 points and we’ve won when I score 10.” – Kobe Bryant

“There’s certain players that I’ve made cry. If I can make you cry by being sarcastic, then I really don’t want to play with you in the playoffs.” – Kobe Bryant

“Losing is losing, there aren’t different degrees of losing. You either win a championship or you’re s**t. It’s very black & white to me.” – Kobe Bryant

“The message was that if you want to win championships, you have to let people focus on what they do best while you focus on what you do best. For him, that was rebounding, running the floor, and blocking shots.”― Kobe Bryant

“The Black Mamba collection of watches is me: It is my alter ego, so to speak. As I mentioned before, it is sharp, cutting edge and sleek which are characteristics I try to apply when I’m out there on the basketball court.” – Kobe Bryant

“A lot of people say they want to be great, but they’re not willing to make the sacrifices necessary to achieve greatness.”― Kobe Bryant

“Better learn not to talk to me. You shake the tree, a leopard’s gonna fall out.” – Kobe Bryant

“Hi, I’m Kobe Bryant. And I have decided to take my talent to, uh… I have decided to skip college and take my talent to the NBA.” – Kobe Bryant

“I love going one-on-one with someone. That’s what I do. I’ve never lost. It’s a whole different game, just to have them right in front of you and be able to do whatever you want.” – Kobe Bryant

“I remember feeling the silence. I remember feeling the fear. I’m like, ‘This could be a wrap.’ And that’s what the silence was. It was like, ‘This could really be a wrap for you.’” – Kobe Bryant

“I’m extremely willful to win, and I respond to challenges. Scoring titles and stuff like that… it sounds, well, I don’t care how it sounds – to me, scoring comes easy. It’s not a challenge to me to win the scoring title, because I know I can.” – Kobe Bryant

The people who truly know me know what I’m like. There have been people who try to say things that aren’t fair, and I check them. And then they don’t like me because I checked them.” – Kobe Bryant

“I focus on one thing and one thing only – that’s trying to win as many championships as I can.” – Kobe Bryant

“I like playing for the purple and gold. This is where I want to finish up.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’m playing against great players, playing against the best in the world. The competition – that’s what I’ve always wanted.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’ll figure it out. I’ll make some tweaks, some changes, but I’m still coming.” – Kobe Bryant

“Winning takes precedence overall. There’s no grey area. No almost.” – Kobe Bryant

“Only an idiot would doubt my return.” – Kobe Bryant

“I don’t think a coach becomes the right coach until he wins a championship.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’m not jumping through the gym by any means. But I don’t need to be able to do that in order to be a great player.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’m not the most patient of people.” – Kobe Bryant

“What does perfection look like to me? Championship rings.” – Kobe Bryant

“We all know what flopping is when we see it. The stuff that you see is where guys aren’t really getting hit at all and are just flailing around like a fish out of water.” – Kobe Bryant

“Sometimes I do wonder what college would have been like. But I made my decision.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’m here. I’m not going anywhere. No matter what the injury – unless it’s completely debilitating – I’m going to be the same player I’ve always been. I’ll figure it out. I’ll make some tweaks, some changes, but I’m still coming.” – Kobe Bryant

“My role is to make sure we’re moving in the right direction, getting points, rebounds, steals, assists and providing leadership.” – Kobe Bryant

“There is beauty in that. I mean, it’s going through the cycle. I mean, it’s the cycle that is the natural progression of growth, of maturation. I mean, there’s no sadness in that … I see the beauty in not being able to blow past defenders anymore, you know what I mean? I see the beauty in getting up in the morning and being in pain because I know all the hard work that it took to get to this point. So, I’m not, I’m not sad about it. I’m very appreciative of what I’ve had.” – Kobe Bryant

“Because I don’t want chumps, I don’t want pushovers, and if you’re a chump and a pushover, I will run over you.” – Kobe Bryant

“Leadership is lonely … I’m not going to be afraid of confrontation to get us to where we need to go. There’s a big misconception where people thinking winning or success comes from everybody putting their arms around each other and singing kumbaya and patting them on the back when they mess up, and that’s just not reality. If you are going to be a leader, you are not going to please everybody. You have to hold people accountable. Even if you have that moment of being uncomfortable.” – Kobe Bryant

“You just try to take it one day at a time, … You step on the basketball floor and just play. It’s fun. I’m comfortable with it.” – Kobe Bryant

“I was just letting the shots fly. You know, I don’t leave any bullets in the chamber.” – Kobe Bryant

“The only thing I’m afraid of is bees. I don’t like bees. I’m allergic to them.” – Kobe Bryant

John Fitzgerald Kennedy Quotes

John Fitzgerald Kennedy Quotes

Born to a prolific and affluent Irish-American family as the second of a total of nine children in Brookline, Massachusetts, in 1917, to the businessman and politician Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr., and his wife Rose Kennedy (née Fitzgerald), the 35th President of the United States, John Fitzgerald Kennedy (more widely known by his initials, JFK), expressed an interest in politics, history and public service from an early age. Both his paternal and maternal grandfathers were involved in politics.

After completing his studies at Harvard University summa cum laude and earning a Bachelor of Arts in government, he was set to continue his studies at both Stanford and Yale, which was prevented by the onset of World War II during which he joined the US Naval Forces. After the war and following a brief stint in journalism as a special correspondent for Hearst Newspapers, he embarked on a political career, starting with the US House of Representatives where he served between 1947 and 1953, followed by the US Senate between 1953 and 1960, before defeating the Republican incumbent Richard Nixon during one of the tightest American president elections in history (he won the popular vote by 49.7% versus 49.5%) in 1960.

During his political career, he advocated for better housing for veterans, better healthcare and better working conditions, among others. In 1959, he co-sponsored the Cape Cod National Seashore Bill protecting Cape Cod. He is known to have prevented the breakout of a thermonuclear crisis during the Cuban Missile Crisis by being able to reach an agreement with his Soviet colleague Khrushchev at the peak of Cold War tensions between the US and the Soviet Union.

He was behind the establishment of the Peace Corps and supported the civil rights movement which led to the adoption of several laws prohibiting the discrimination of African Americans, including the Civil Rights Act following his assassination in 1963. Even though he was unable to complete his term after his pre-mature death and his personal life continues to be subject to scrutiny, he has remained one of the most popular US presidents to date.

Did you know:

  • Young JFK took an interest in history and public service after joining his grandfather’s walking tours of historic sites in Boston and discussions at the family dinner table;
  • During his school years, he exhibited rebellious behaviour at the famous boarding school, Choate, where he was known for his stunts joined by his older brother, Joe Jr.;
  • He was plagued by illnesses throughout his childhood and had to be hospitalised several times;
  • At Harvard, he joined the varsity swimming team and even won the Nantucket Sound Star Championship in 1936 owing to his sailing skills;
  • Before the outbreak of the war, he received a secret message in Berlin for his father as the US Ambassador in London warning that World War II was about to break out and Poland was invaded soon after;
  • As a journalist, he covered the Potsdam Conference;
  • He was not even set to run for president but pursued the career set out for his older brother Joe Jr., who had been killed in combat.

Most Inspiring John F. Kennedy Quotes

Leadership and learning are indispensable to one another.

Let us never negotiate out of fear but let us never fear to negotiate.

Things do not happen. Things are made to happen.

A man does what he must in spite of personal consequences,
in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures
and that is the basis of all human morality.
Those who dare to fail miserably can achieve greatly.

Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try.

There are risks and costs to action. But they are far less than the long-range risks of comfortable inaction.

I would rather be accused of breaking precedents than breaking promises.

We must use time as a tool, not as a couch.

The problems of the world cannot possibly be solved
by sceptics or cynics whose horizons are limited by the obvious realities.
We need men who can dream of things that never were and ask ‘why not?’

One person can make a difference and everyone should try.

Once you say you’re going to settle for second, that’s what happens to you in life.

Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth.

If not us, who? If not now, when?

Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.

Do not pray for easy lives. Pray to be stronger men.

A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but an idea lives on.
Ideas have endurance without death.

We need men who can dream of things that never were.

Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past,
let us accept our own responsibility for the future.

Just because we cannot see clearly the end of the road,
that is no reason for not setting out on the essential journey.

American Legion

“The leadership of the American Legion has not had a constructive thought for the benefit of this country since 1918.” (Spring, 1949, during House debate on housing bill to provide federal funds for slum clearance and low income public housing.  –James MacGregor Burns, John F. Kennedy: A Political Profile (Harcourt, Brace: New York, 1960), p. 75.

Arms Control and Disarmament

“With all of the history of war, and the human race’s history unfortunately has been a good deal more war than peace, with nuclear weapons distributed all through the world, and available, and the strong reluctance of any people to accept defeat, I see the possibility in the 1970’s of the President of the United States having to face a world in which 15 or 20 or 25 nations may have these weapons.”  –“The President’s News Conference of March 21, 1963 (107),” Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“My fellow Americans, let us take that first step. Let us…step back from the shadow of war and seek out the way of peace. And if that journey is a thousand miles, or even more, let history record that we, in this land, at this time, took the first step.”  –“Radio and Television Address to the American People on the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (316),” July 26, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.
“I have said that control of arms is a mission that we undertake particularly for our children and our grandchildren and that they have no lobby in Washington.”  –“Statement by the President to American Women Concerning their Role in Securing World Peace (449),” November 1, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

The Arts

“If more politicians knew poetry, and more poets knew politics, I am convinced the world would be a little better place in which to live.”  — Speech at Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass., 14 June 1956. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Pre-Presidential Papers. Senate Files. Series 12.1. Speech Files, 1953-1960, Box 895, Folder: “Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 14 June 1956,” John F. Kennedy Presidential Library.

“There is a connection, hard to explain logically but easy to feel, between achievement in public life and progress in the arts. The age of Pericles was also the age of Phidias. The age of Lorenzo de Medici was also the age of Leonardo da Vinci. The age Elizabeth also the age of Shakespeare. And the New Frontier for which I campaign in public life, can also be a New Frontier for American art.”  –Response to letter sent by Miss Theodate Johnson, Publisher of Musical America to the two presidential candidates requesting their views on music in relation to the Federal Government and domestic world affairs. Then-Senator John Kennedy’s answer was dated September 13, 1960 and published in the October issue of the magazine.

“…I am certain that after the dust of centuries has passed over our cities, we, too, will be remembered not for victories or defeats in battle or in politics, but for our contribution to the human spirit.”  –“Remarks at a Closed-circuit Television Broadcast on Behalf of the National Cultural Center (527),” November 29, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“To further the appreciation of culture among all the people, to increase respect for the creative individual, to widen participation by all the processes and fulfillments of art – this is one of the fascinating challenges of these days.”  –“LOOK magazine, ‘The Arts in America’ (552),” December 18, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“Too often in the past, we have thought of the artist as an idler and dilettante and of the lover of arts as somehow sissy and effete. We have done both an injustice. The life of the artist is, in relation to his work, stern and lonely. He has labored hard, often amid deprivation, to perfect his skill. He has turned aside from quick success in order to strip his vision of everything secondary or cheapening. His working life is marked by intense application and intense discipline.”  –“LOOK magazine, ‘The Arts in America’ (552),” December 18, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“We must never forget that art is not a form of propaganda; it is a form of truth.”  –“Remarks at Amherst College upon receiving an Honorary Degree (439),” October 26, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“I look forward to an America which will not be afraid of grace and beauty…an America which will reward achievement in the arts as we reward achievement in business or statecraft.”  –“Remarks at Amherst College upon receiving an Honorary Degree (439),” October 26, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“In serving his vision of the truth, the artist best serves his nation.”  –“Remarks at Amherst College upon receiving an Honorary Degree (439),” October 26, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“It may be different elsewhere. But democratic society – in it, the highest duty of the writer, the composer, the artist is to remain true to himself and to let the chips fall where they may.”  –“Remarks at Amherst College upon receiving an Honorary Degree (439),” October 26, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“I look forward to an America which will reward achievement in the arts as we reward achievement in business or statecraft.”  –“Remarks at Amherst College upon receiving an Honorary Degree (439),” October 26, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“The life of the arts, far from being an interruption, a distraction, in the life of a nation, is very close to the center of a nation’s purpose…and is a test of the quality of a nation’s civilization.”  –“LOOK magazine, ‘The Arts in America’ (552),” December 18, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962. (Inscribed at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.)


“Prince Bismarck was even more specific. One third, he said, of the students of German universities broke down from overwork, another third broke down from dissipation, and the other third ruled Germany.”  –“Address in Berkeley at the University of California (109),” March 23, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.


“But Goethe tells us in his greatest poem that Faust lost the liberty of his soul when he said to the passing moment: “Stay, thou art so fair.” And our liberty, too, is endangered if we pause for the passing moment, if we rest on our achievements, if we resist the pace of progress. For time and the world do not stand still. Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future.”  –“Address in the Assembly Hall at the Paulskirche in Frankfurt (266),” June 25, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.


“Children are the world’s most valuable resource and its best hope for the future.”  –“Re: United States Committee for UNICEF July 25, 1963.” Papers of John F. Kennedy. Presidential Papers. White House Central Files. Chronological File. Series 1. President’s Outgoing Executive Correspondence, Box 11, Folder: “July 1963: 16-31,” JFKL.
“We can say with some assurance that, although children may be the victims of fate, they will not be the victims of our neglect.”  –“Remarks upon signing the Maternal and Child Health and Mental Retardation Planning Bill (434),” October 24, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

Civil Service

“I have pledged myself and my colleagues in the cabinet to a continuous encouragement of initiative, responsibility and energy in serving the public interest. Let every public servant know, whether his post is high or low, that a man’s rank and reputation in this Administration will be determined by the size of the job he does, and not by the size of his staff, his office or his budget. Let it be clear that this Administration recognizes the value of dissent and daring — that we greet healthy controversy as the hallmark of healthy change. Let the public service be a proud and lively career. And let every man and woman who works in any area of our national government, in any branch, at any level, be able to say with pride and with honor in future years: ‘I served the United States Government in that hour of our nation’s need.'”  –“Annual Message to the Congress on the State of the Union (11),” January 30, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.

“The success of this Government, and thus the success of our Nation, depends in the last analysis upon the quality.of our career services. The legislation enacted by the Congress, as well as the decisions made by me and by the department and agency heads, must all be implemented by the career men and women in the Federal service. In foreign affairs, national defense, science and technology, and a host of other fields, they face problems of unprecedented importance and perplexity. We are all dependent on their sense of loyalty and responsibility as well as their competence and energy.”  –“Special Message to the Congress on Federal Pay Reform (55),” February 20, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

Conscientious Objectors

“War will exist until that distant day when the conscientious objector enjoys the same reputation and prestige that the warrior does today.”  –Letter to a Navy friend, quoted in Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., A Thousand Days: John F. Kennedy in the White House (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1965), p. 88.

Crisis, Meaning of

“In the Chinese language, the word “crisis” is composed of two characters, one representing danger and the other, opportunity.”  — Speech at United Negro College Fund fundraiser, Indianapolis Indiana, 12 April 1959. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Pre-Presidential Papers. Senate Files. Series 12.1. Speech Files, 1953-1960, Box 902, Folder: “United Negro College Fund, Indianapolis, Indiana, 12 April 1959,” JFKL; Speech at the Valley Forge Country Club, Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, 29 October 1960. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Pre-Presidential Papers. Senate Files. Series 12.1. Speech Files, 1953-1960, Box 914, Folder: “Valley Forge Country Club, Pennsylvania, 29 October 1960,” JFKL.


“Rising tide lifts all boats”.  –“Remarks in Pueblo, Colorado following Approval of the Frying Pan-Arkansas Project (336),” August 17, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“The Federal Budget can and should be made an instrument of prosperity and stability, not a deterrent to recovery.”  –“Special message to Congress: Program for Economic Recovery and Growth (17),” February 2, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.

“The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining – by filling three basic gaps in our anti-recession protection.”  –“Annual Message to the Congress on the State of the Union (7),” January 11, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“It is increasingly clear that no matter what party is in power, so long as our national security needs keep rising, an economy hampered by restrictive tax rates will never produce enough jobs or enough profits.”  –“Address and Question and Answer Period at the Economic Club of New York (549),” December 14, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“If the economy of today were operating close to capacity levels with little unemployment, or if a sudden change in our military requirements should cause a scramble for men and resources, then I would oppose tax reductions as irresponsible and inflationary; and I would not hesitate to recommend a tax increase if that were necessary.”  –“Address and Question and Answer Period at the Economic Club of New York (549),” December 14, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

Importance of Being

“Now let me make it clear that I believe there can only be one defense policy for the United States and that is summed up in the word ‘first.’ I do not mean first, but. I do not mean first, when. I do not mean first, if. I mean first –period.”  — Speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars Convention, Detroit, Michigan, 26 August 1960. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Pre-Presidential Papers. Senate Files. Series 12.1. Speech Files, 1953-1960, Box 910, Folder: “National VFW Convention, Detroit, Michigan, 26 August 1960,” JFKL.

“Five score years ago the ground on which we here stand shuddered under the clash of arms and was consecrated for all time by the blood of American manhood. Abraham Lincoln, in dedicating this great battlefield, has expressed, in words too eloquent for paraphrase or summary, why this sacrifice was necessary. Today, we meet not to add to his words nor to amend his sentiment but to recapture the feeling of awe that comes when contemplating a memorial to so many who placed their lives at hazard for right, as God gave them to see right. Among those who fought here were young men who but a short time before were pursuing truth in the peaceful halls of the then new University of Notre Dame. Since that time men of Notre Dame have proven, on a hundred battlefields, that the words, “For God, For Country, and For Notre Dame,” are full of meaning. Let us pray that God may grant us the wisdom to find and to follow a path that will enable the men of Notre Dame and all of our young men to seek truth in the halls of study rather than on the field of battle.”  –“Message from the President on the Occasion of Field Mass at Gettysburg, June 29, 1963, delivered by John S.

Gleason, Jr.” Papers of John F. Kennedy. Presidential Papers. White House Central Files. Chronological File. Series 1. President’s Outgoing Executive Correspondence, Box 10, Folder: “June 1963: 1-15,” JFKL.

National Goals

“For one true measure of a nation is its success in fulfilling the promise of a better life for each of its members. Let this be the measure of our nation.”  –“Special message to the Congress on National Health Needs (65),” February 27, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“Our deep spiritual confidence that this nation will survive the perils of today – which may well be with us for decades to come – compels us to invest in our nation’s future, to consider and meet our obligations to our children and the numberless generations that will follow.”  –“Special message to the Congress on Conservation (69),” March 1, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“I have seen in many places housing which has been developed under government influences, but I have never seen any projects in which governments have played their part which have fountains and statues and grass and trees, which are as important to the concept of the home as the roof itself.”  –“Remarks at the Unidad Independencia Housing Project, City of Mexico (269),” June 30, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“It’s only when they join together in a forward movement that this country moves ahead…”  –“Remarks at Los Banos, CA at the Groundbreaking Ceremonies for the San Luis Dam (337),” August 18, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“Our goal is not the victory of might but the vindication of right…not peace at the expense of freedom, but both peace and freedom, here in this hemisphere, and, we hope, around the world. God willing, that goal will be achieved.”  –“Radio and Television Report to the American People on the Soviet Arms Build-up in Cuba (485),” October 22, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“This country cannot afford to be materially rich and spiritually poor.”  –“Annual Message to the Congress on the State of the Union (12),” January 14, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“And if we cannot end now our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity. For, in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.”  –“Commencement Address at American University in Washington, D.C. (232),” June 10, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

Green Beret

“The green beret’ is again becoming a symbol of excellence, a badge of courage, a mark of distinction in the fight for freedom. I know the United States Army will live up to its reputation for imagination, resourcefulness, and spirit as we meet this challenge.”  –Letter to the United States Army, April 11, 1962. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Presidential Papers. White House Central Files. Chronological File. Series 1. President’s Outgoing Executive Correspondence, Box 5, Folder: “April 1962: 3-15,” JFKL.


“We celebrate the past to awaken the future”.  — Speech at the 25th Anniverary of the Signing of the Social Security Act, Hyde Park, New York, 14 August 1960. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Pre-Presidential Papers. Senate Files. Series 12.1. Speech Files, 1953-1960, Box 910, Folder: “25th Anniversary of the Signing of the Social Security Act, Hyde Park, New York, 14 August 1960,” JFKL.

“A nation reveals itself not only by the men it produces but also by the men it honors, the men it remembers. (439)”  –“Remarks at Amherst College upon receiving an Honorary Degree (439),” October 26, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.


“…that we shall be as a city upon a hill – the eyes of all people are upon us.” (Winthrop)  — Speech before the Massachusetts State Legislature, Boston, Massachusetts, 9 January 1961. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Presidential Papers. President’s Office Files. Series 3. Speech Files, Box 34, Folder: “Address to Massachusetts State Legislature 9 January 1961,” JFKL.

“A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but an idea lives on”.  –“Remarks Recorded for the Opening of a USIA Transmitter at Greenville, North Carolina (55),” February 8, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents, John F. Kennedy, 1963.
“This state, this city, this campus, have stood long for both human rights and human enlightenment, and let that forever be true.”  –“Remarks in Nashville at the 90th Convocation of Vanderbilt University (192),” May 18, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents, John F. Kennedy, 1963.

Inaugural Address (full speech)

“Ask not what your country can do for you…ask what you can do for your country.”

“All this will not be finished in the first one hundred days. Nor will it be finished in the first one thousand days, not in the life of this Administration, nor even perhaps in our lifetime on this planet. But let us begin.”
“Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate.”

“Inaugural Address (1),” January 20, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.


“I think this is the most extraordinary collection of talent, of human knowledge, that has ever been gathered together at the White House, with the possible exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone.”  –“Remarks at a Dinner Honoring Nobel Prize Winners of the Western Hemisphere (161),” April 29, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.


“There are three things which are real; God, Human Folly and Laughter. The first two are beyond our comprehension so we must do what we can with the third.”  –from Tales of the Ramayana, as told by Aubrey Menen (New York: Scribner’s, 1954), p. 276.

“Missile Gap”

“I think we’re going to have to do better. Mr. Nixon talks about our being the strongest country in the world. I think we are today, but we were far stronger relative to the Communists 5 years ago. And what is of great concern is that the balance of power is in danger of moving with them. They made a breakthrough in missiles and by 1961, ‘2, and ‘3, they will be outnumbering us in missiles.”  –Transcript of fourth debate, ABC studios, New York, New York, 21 October 1960. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Pre-Presidential Papers. Presidential Campaign Files, 1960. Series 15.06. Speeches and the Press: Press Secretary’s Subject File, 1960, Box 1052, Folder: “Television debates: ABC transcript: Fourth debate,” JFKL.

“I can imagine a no more rewarding career. And any man who may be asked in this century what he did to make his life worth while, I think can respond with a good deal of pride and satisfaction: ‘I served in the United States Navy.'”  –“Remarks at the U.S. Naval Academy (321),” August 1, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents, John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“New Frontier”

First mentioned on July 15, 1960 when accepting nomination for the U.S. presidenc


“…what really counts is not the immediate act of courage or of valor, but those who bear the struggle day in and day out – not the sunshine patriots but those who are willing to stand for a long period of time.”  –“Remarks at the White House to Members of the American Legion (70),” March 1, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“Theodore Roosevelt once said, ‘The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena – whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood…who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions – and spends himself in a worthy cause – who at best if he wins knows the thrills of high achievement – and if he fails at least fails while daring greatly – so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat.'”   –“Remarks at National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame Banquet (496),” December 5, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961. (References Theodore Roosevelt’s speech, “Citizenship in a Republic” given at The Sorbonne, Paris, April 23, 1910.)

Physical Fitness

“We have become more and more not a nation of athletes but a nation of spectators.”  –“Remarks at National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame Banquet (496),” December 5, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.


“Just as I went into politics because Joe died, if anything happened to me tomorrow, my brother Bobby would run for my seat in the Senate. And if Bobby died, Teddy would take over for him.”  — Quoted in Joe McCarthy, The Remarkable Kennedys (New York: Dial Press, 1960), p. 114.
Post-Presidential Year

“Whether I serve one or two terms in the Presidency, I will find myself at the end of that period at what might be called the awkward age–too old to begin a new career and too young to write my memoirs.”  –Quoted in Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., A Thousand Days: John F. Kennedy in the White House (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1965), p. 1017. According to a footnote in Schlesinger’s manuscript (1st draft, p. 1378), this was stated on February 13, 1961.


“I have a nice home, the office is close by, and the pay is good.”  –Quoted in Kenneth O’Donnell, Dave Powers, and Joseph McCarthy, Johnny We Hardly Knew Ye (Boston: Little, Brown, and Company, 1970), p. 262

“If all of you had voted the other way – there’s about 5,500 of you here tonight – I would not be the President of the United States.”  –“Address in Chicago at a dinner of the Democratic Party of Cook County (155),” April 28, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.

“When I ran for Presidency of the United States, I knew that this country faced serious challenges, but I could not realize – nor could any man realize who does not bear the burdens of this office – how heavy and constant would be those burdens”  –“Radio and Television Report to the American People on the Berlin Crisis (302),” July 25, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.

“Harry Truman once said, ‘There are 14 or 15 million Americans who have the resources to have representatives in Washington to protect their interests, and that the interests of the great mass of the other people – the 150 or 160 million – is the responsibility of the president of the United States, and I propose to fulfill it.'”  –“Address in Atlantic City at the Convention of the United Auto Workers (174),” May 8, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962. (This passage was featured in the Charles Guggenheim documentary that was shown to visitors in the original exhibit of the John F. Kennedy Museum.)


“We have all seen these circus elephants complete with tusks, ivory in their head and thick skins, who move around the circus ring and grab the tail of the elephant ahead of them.”  –Speech at the Cow Palace, San Francisco, California, 2 November 1960. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Pre-Presidential Papers. Senate Files. Series 12.1. Speech Files, 1953-1960, Box 914, Folder: “Cow Palace, San Francisco, California, 2 November 1960,” JFKL.

Responsibility, Collective

“Let us not despair but act. Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past – let us accept our own responsibility for the future.”  –Speech at Loyola College Alumni Banquet, Baltimore, Maryland, 18 February, 1958. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Pre-Presidential Papers. Senate Files. Series 12.1. Speech Files, 1953-1960, Box 899, Folder: “Loyola College annual alumni banquet, Baltimore, Maryland, 18 February 1958,” JFKL

“But I think the American people expect more from us than cries of indignation and attack. The times are too grave, the challenge too urgent, and the stakes too high to permit the customary passions of political debate. We are not here to curse the darkness, but to light the candle that can guide us through that darkness to a safe and sane future. As Winston Churchill said on taking office some twenty years ago: if we open a quarrel between the present and the past, we shall be in danger of losing the future.”  –Speech accepting the Democratic nomination, Los Angeles, California, 15 July 1960. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Pre-Presidential Papers. Senate Files. Series 12.1. Speech Files, 1953-1960, Box 910, Folder: “Acceptance Speech of Senator Kennedy, Democratic National Convention, 15 July 1960,” JFKL. (References the Chinese proverb, “it is better to light a candle than curse the darkness.”)

“And we must face the fact that the United States is neither omnipotent or omniscient – that we are only six percent of the world’s population – that we cannot impose our will upon the other ninety-four percent of mankind – that we cannot right every wrong or reverse each adversity – and that therefore there cannot be an American solution to every world problem.”  –“Address in Seattle at the University of Washington’s 100th Anniversary Program (473),” November 16, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.

“For I can assure you that we love our country, not for what it was, though it has always been great — not for what it is, though of this we are deeply proud — but for what it someday can, and, through the efforts of us all, someday will be.”  –“Address at a Luncheon Meeting of the National Industrial Conference Board (33),” February 13, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.

“But however close we sometimes seem to that dark and final abyss, let no man of peace and freedom despair. For he does not stand alone.”  –“Address to the U.N. General Assembly (387),” September 25, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.
“Never before has man had such capacity to control his own environment, to end thirst and hunger, to conquer poverty and disease, to banish illiteracy and massive human misery. We have the power to make this the best generation of mankind in the history of the world – or make it the last.”  –“Address before the 18th General Assembly of the United Nations (366),” September 20, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“In seeking the help of the Congress and our countrymen, I pledged no easy answers. I pledged, and asked, only toil and dedication. These the Congress and the people have given in good measure.”  –“Annual Message to the Congress on the State of the Union,” January 14, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

Responsibility, Personal

“When at some future date the high court of history sits in judgment on each of us…our success or failure…will be measured by the answers to four questions: First, were we truly men of courage…? Secondly, were we truly men of judgment…? Third, were we truly men of integrity…? Finally, were we truly men of dedication…?”  –Speech before the Massachusetts State Legislature, Boston, Massachusetts, 9 January 1961. Papers of John F. Kennedy. Presidential Papers. President’s Office Files. Series 3. Speech Files, Box 34, Folder: “Address to Massachusetts State Legislature, 9 January 1961,” JFKL.

“…victory has 100 fathers and defeat is an orphan…”  –“President’s News Conference of April 21, 1961 (139),” Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.
“We must use time as a tool, not as a couch”  –“Address in New York City to the National Association of Manufacturers (496),” December 6, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961.

“…we must think and act not only for the moment but for our time. I am reminded of the story of the great French Marshal Lyautey, who once asked his gardener to plant a tree. The gardener objected that the tree was slow-growing and would not reach maturity for a hundred years. The Marshal replied, ‘In that case, there is no time to lose, plant it this afternoon.'”  –“Address in Berkeley at the University of California, (109),” March 23, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“Of those to whom much is given, much is required”.  –“Remarks in Nashville at the 90th Anniversary Convocation of Vanderbilt University (192),” May 18, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963. (President Kennedy was quoting from the Bible, Gospel of Luke, Chapter 12, verse 48.)

“Dante once said that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in periods of moral crisis maintain their neutrality.”  –“Remarks in Bonn at the Signing of a Charter Establishing the German Peace Corps (258),” June 24, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963. (Note: Dante never made this statement. The closest to what President Kennedy meant is in the Inferno where the souls in the ante-room of hell, who “lived without disgrace and without praise,” and the coward angels, who did not rebel but did not resist the cohorts of Lucifer, are condemned to being whirled through the air by great winds while being stung by wasps and horseflies.)

The Sea

“I really don’t know why it is that all of us are so committed to the sea, except I think it’s because in addition to the fact that the sea changes, and the light changes, and ships change, it’s because we all came from the sea. And it is an interesting biological fact that all of us have, in our veins the exact same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean, and, therefore, we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea – whether it is to sail or to watch it – we are going back from whence we came.”  –“Remarks in Newport at the Australian Ambassador’s Dinner for the America’s Cup Crews (383),” September 14, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“‘O God, thy sea is so great and my boat is so small.'”  –“Remarks in New York City at the Dedication of the East Coast Memorial to the Missing at Sea (203),” May 23, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963. (An old Breton fisherman’s prayer that Admiral Rickover had inscribed on plaques that he gave to newly commissioned submarine captains. Rickover presented President Kennedy with one of these plaques, which sat on his desk in the Oval Office.)

Seven Days in May

When discussing the possibility of a complete military takeover in the country after reading the book Seven Days in May, President Kennedy said, “…if there were a third Bay of Pigs, it could happen.” He paused and then said “But it won’t happen on my watch.”  –Related in Paul Fay, Jr., The Pleasure of His Company (New York: Harper & Row, 1966), p. 190.


“We set sail on this new sea because there is new knowledge to be gained, and new rights to be won, and they must be won and used for the progress of all people. For space science, like nuclear science and technology, has no conscience of its own. Whether it will become a force for good or ill depends on man, and only if the United States occupies a position of preeminence can we help decide whether this new ocean will be a sea of peace or a new terrifying theater of war.”  –“Address at Rice University in Houston on the Nation’s Space Effort (373),” September 12, 1962, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.

“We go into space because whatever mankind must undertake, free men must fully share…I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth.”  –“Special Message to the Congress on Urgent National Needs (205),” May 25, 1961, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1961. 

“This nation has tossed its cap over the wall of space, and we have no choice but to follow it.”  –“Remarks in San Antonio at the Dedication of the Aerospace Medical Health Center (472),” November 21, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963. (The original anecdote from which Kennedy derived this comparison is in Frank O’Connor, An Only Child, London: MacMillan & Co. Ltd., 1961, p. 180.)


“No country can possibly move ahead, no free society can possibly be sustained, unless it has an educated citizenry whose qualities of mind and heart permit it to take part in the complicated and increasingly sophisticated decisions that pour not only upon the President and upon the Congress, but upon all the citizens who exercise the ultimate power…Quite obviously, there is a higher purpose, and that is the hope that you will turn to the service of the State the scholarship, the education, the qualities which society has helped develop in you; that you will render on the community level, or on the state level, or on the national level, or the international level a contribution to the maintenance of freedom and peace and the security of our country and those associated with it in a most critical time.”  –“Commencement Address at San Diego State College (226),” June 6, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“This is a great country and requires a good deal of all of us, so I can imagine nothing more important than for all of you to continue to work in public affairs and be interested in them, not only to bring up a family, but also give part of your time to your community, your state, and your country.”  –“Remarks to the Delegates of Girls Nation (322),” August 2, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“I can assure you that there is no career which you will adopt when you leave college that will bring you a more and greater sense of satisfaction and a greater feeling of participation in a great effort than will your work here or in your state or in your community…this generation of Americans – you here who will be in positions of responsibility for the rest of this century – will deal with the most difficult, sensitive, and dangerous problems that any society of people has ever dealt with at any age…The Greeks defined happiness as the full use of your powers along the lines of excellence, and I can imagine no place where you can use your powers more fully along lines more excellent in the 1960’s than to be in the service of the United States.”  –“Remarks to Student Participants in the White House Seminar in Government (334),” August 27, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“What we seek to advance, what we seek to develop in all of our colleges and universities, are educated men and women who can bear the burdens of responsible citizenship, who can make judgments about life as it is, and as it must be, and encourage the people to make those decisions which can bring not only prosperity and security, but happiness to the people of the United States and those who depend upon it.”  –“Address at the University of North Dakota (379),” September 25, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.
“I hope that all of you who are students here will recognize the great opportunity that lies before you in this decade, and in the decades to come, to be of service to our country. The Greeks once defined happiness as full use of your powers along lines of excellence, and I can assure you that there is no area of life where you will have an opportunity to use whatever powers you have, and to use them along more excellent lines, bringing ultimately, I think, happiness to you and those whom you serve.”  –“Address at the University of Wyoming (381),” September 25, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“I ask particularly that those of you who are now in school will prepare yourselves to bear the burden of leadership over the next 40 years here in the United States, and make sure that the United States – which I believe almost alone has maintained watch and ward for freedom – that the United States meet its responsibility. That is a wonderful challenge for us as a people.”  –“Remarks at the Cheney Stadium in Tacoma, Washington (387),” September 27, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.

“…I come here today…not just because you are doing well and because you are outstanding students, but because we expect something of you. And unless in this free country of ours we are able to demonstrate that we are able to make this society work and progress, unless we can hope that from you we are going to get back all of the talents which society has helped develop in you, then, quite obviously, all the hopes of all of us that freedom will not only endure but prevail, of course, will be disappointed. So we ask the best of you…I congratulate you on what you have done, and most of all I congratulate you on what you are going to do.”  –“Remarks in New York City to the National Convention of the Catholic Youth Organization (463),” November 15, 1963, Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963.


“…there is always inequity in life. Some men are killed in a war and some men are wounded, and some men never leave the country, and some men are stationed in the Antarctic and some are stationed in San Francisco. It’s very hard in the military or personal life to assure complete equality. Life is unfair.”  –“President’s News Conference of March 21, 1962 (107),” Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1962.


Jim Rohn Quotes

Born into an Idaho farm family in Yakima, Washington, in 1930, Emanuel James “Jim” Rohn continues to inspire motivational coaches, speakers, writers and entrepreneurs worldwide with his success philosophy and mindset despite his death to pulmonary fibrosis in 2009. Born and raised at a farm owned by his parents Emanuel and Claire, he completed elementary and secondary school before enrolling into college and dropping out after one year, claiming that school had not provided him with the knowledge he’d been yearning for.

As fate would have it, the acclaimed late author, motivational speaker and entrepreneur embarked on his professional path by accepting a job as HR manager at the local Sears outlet, which led to an invitation by a friend to attend a seminar presented and facilitated by the famous businessman and one of his main subsequent mentors, John Earl Shoaff, in whose direct-selling business, AbundaVita, Rohn enrolled in 1955. In 1957, he joined another direct-selling business, Nutri-Bio, where he was mentored by one of the founders – Shoaff, which led to great success in the business and his appointment as vice-president of the company. When the company went out of business in the 1990s,

Rohn was invited to speak at a meeting of a local Rotary Club. His depiction of his success story proved such a big hit that he embarked on a more prominent public speaking career than before. In 40 years (he’d already started giving speeches at local clubs in 1963), he shared his message with more than 6000 audiences and 5 million people all over the world through the Adventures in Achievement brand and by giving speeches to the oil company Standard Oil. He also penned 17 books, audio and video materials.

He is credited as one of the biggest influences on globally-renowned present-day motivational speakers and authors, such as Tony Robbins (whom he mentored in the late 1970s), Brian Tracy and Harv T. Eker. He is also credited as one of the main driving forces behind the success of the founder of Herbalife, Mark R. Hughes. His net worth is said to have amounted to 500 million dollars. Interestingly enough, he never aspired to become rich but was driven by his wish to help people unlock their full potential throughout his life.

Did you know

  • That he attributed his work ethic to being raised on a farm;
  • That he inherited the aptitude to share life-affirming stories with enthralled audiences from his father, a renowned local story-teller;
  • That he received several accolades for his public-speaking efforts, including the coveted National Speakers Association CPAE Award;
  • That he focused his public-speaking efforts on bringing extraordinary insights to audiences from all walks of life and sharing his views on the fundamental driving forces underlying human behaviour;
  • That his books and other materials have impacted the lives of millions of people throughout the world;
  • That his first public speech was given at the local Beverly Hills Hotel in 1963 and that he embarked on a public-speaking career at local high-school and students’ clubs;
  • That he is also credited as one of the most prominent influences on the authors of the Chicken Soup book series, Mark Victor Hansen and Jack Canfield?

Most Inspiring Jim Rohn Quotes

Learn how to be happy with what you have while you pursue all that you want.

Don’t wish it were easier. Wish you were better.

If you really want to do something, you’ll find a way. If you don’t, you’ll find an excuse.

The worst thing one can do is not to try, to be aware of what one wants and not give in to it,
to spend years in silent hurt wondering if something could have materialized never knowing.
Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.

Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.

Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure.

You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.

The challenge of leadership is to be strong, but not rude
be kind, but not weak; be bold, but not bully;
be thoughtful, but not lazy; be humble, but not timid; be proud,
but not arrogant; have humor, but without folly.
Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.

If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan.

When you know what you want, and you want it bad enough, you’ll find a way to get it.

If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary.

If you don’t like how things are, change it. You are not a tree.

Motivation alone is not enough.
If you have an idiot and you motivate him,
now you have a motivated idiot.


Albert Einstein Quotes

Born in 1879 in Ulm, Germany, into a family of secular Ashkenazi Jews, which later moved to Munich where his father and uncle founded a company manufacturing direct-current-based electrical equipment. After the business failed due to the inability of his father to shift to alternate current, the family moved to Italy, leaving Albert behind to finish his studies at the Luitpold Gymnasium. He showed an excellent prowess of maths and physics from an early age and even taught himself algebra and Euclidian geometry over the summer as a teenager of 12 years of age.

Albert continued his education in Switzerland and was awarded a teacher of mathematics and physics degree from the Swiss Federal Polytechnic School in Switzerland. As he was unable to gain employment as a teacher, he accepted a post at the Swiss Patent Office and obtained Swiss citizenship. His doctoral degree followed in 1905. He subsequently became Professor Extraordinary in Zurich and Prague.

In 1914, he was appointed Professor at the University of Berlin where he remained until 1933 when he emigrated Germany due to his Jewish ancestry and the rise of the Nazi regime, renounced German citizenship and took the position of a theoretical physics’ professor at Princeton University where he remained until his death in 1955. His main works challenging Newtonian physics, including his acclaimed theory of relativity which led to the birth of current-day quantum physics, were penned from his tenure at the Swiss Patent Office onwards.

He is seen by many as one of the fathers of modern physics and one of the greatest physicists of all time. His most important works include Special Theory of Relativity (1905), Relativity (English translation in 1920), General Theory of Relativity (1916) and The Evolution of Physics (1938). His observations also led to the development of modern-day photon theory of light, he furnished a theory on gravitation and contributed to the problems of theory of radiation and statistical mechanics.

He was renowned for constructing unified field theories since the 1920s and all throughout his tenures at various universities, including Princeton. He gained numerous awards for his work and received several honorary doctorate degrees from several universities. Throughout his life, he lectured in Europe, the US and the Far East and was awarded scholarships and fellowships of leading scientific academies throughout the world.

Did you know:

  • Albert Einstein achieved an extremely high scientific prowess of both maths and physics at an early age of 12;
  • That he changed his citizenship several times due to various reasons (to avoid military service, to escape the Nazi regime, etc.);
  • That his first paper was written in the 1890s;
  • That he was able to work through a high-level geometry textbook given to him by his family tutor so quickly that the tutor found himself unable to follow;
  • That he taught himself several mathematical concepts as a child and teenager, including algebra and calculus and Euclidian geometry (at an early age of 12);
  • That his first scientific paper, Conclusions from Capillary Phenomena, was published by the Annalen der Physik journal in 1900;
  • That he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1922 for his contributions to the development of theoretical physics;
  • That he had to leave Germany in 1933 after not being able to continue his tenure as a Jewish professor;
  • That he also loved music and was known for playing the violin?

Most Inspiring Albert Einstein Quotes

Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.
Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.

Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth.

Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value.

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.

I would teach peace rather than war. I would inculcate love rather than hate.

I believe in intuitions and inspirations. I sometimes feel that I am right. I do not know that I am.

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.

All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree.

A hundred times every day I remind myself that my inner and outer life
are based on the labours of other men, living and dead,
and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure
as I have received and am still receiving.

A man should look for what is, and not for what he thinks should be.

The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious.

I believe in standardizing automobiles. I do not believe in standardizing human beings.

It is, in fact, nothing short of a miracle that the modern methods
of instruction have not yet entirely strangled the holy curiosity of inquiry.

A table, a chair, a bowl of fruit and a violin;
what else does a man need to be happy?

A human being is part of a whole called by us “Universe.”

The important thing is to not stop questioning.
Curiosity has its own reason for existing.

A question that sometimes drives me hazy — am I or are the others crazy?

The world is in greater peril from those who tolerate
or encourage evil than from those who actually commit it

Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.

Concern for man and his fate must always form the chief
interest of all technical endeavours.
Never forget this in the midst of your diagrams and equations.

I love to travel, but I hate to arrive.

All that is valuable in human society depends
upon the opportunity for development accorded the individual.


Anthony Jay Robbins Quotes

Hailed as arguably one of the most prominent and pioneering motivational speakers and coaches of our time and credited with being “the father of the coaching industry”, Anthony Jay Robbins (born Anthony J. Mohorovic in California in 1960), better known as Tony Robbins, constitutes a personified example of the American dream.

Born in poverty as the oldest of three children in North Hollywood, California, to a parking garage attendant of Croatian descent, John Mohorovic, and his wife Nikki, he bore witness to his parents’ divorce at the age of seven. At the age of 12, he was legally adopted by his step-father Jim Robbins. His mother remarried several times and struggled from drug and alcohol abuse.

Robbins left home at the age of 17 and began promoting the seminars of the well-known motivational speaker Jim Rohn who he continues to credit as one of his major role-models in life. After becoming acquainted with NLP and firewalking in the early 1980s, he pursued a career in self-help and positive thinking-oriented motivational seminars, self-help books (such as Unlimited Power, published in 1987, and Awaken the Giant Within, published in 1993) and coaching, before venturing into the world of financial investments and making several cameos on television and film.

He has also co-founded the Robbins-Madanes Centre for Intervention with Cloé Madanes engaged in training life skills coaches how to provide assistance to their clients for various issues. He has coached and trained prominent politicians, businessmen, actors, and athletes, such as Bill Clinton, Wayne Gretzky, Serena Williams and Hugh Jackman. He was included on the “Top 50 Business Intellectuals” list compiled by Accenture and “Top 200 Business Gurus” drawn up by the Harvard Business Press.

He has travelled extensively for his seminars, such as Unleash the Power Within (attended by several thousand participants at any one time), and has most recently introduced them in a virtual format. As a well-known philanthropist, he founded the Anthony Robbins Foundation in 1991 intended to raise money to combat poverty, help youth the elderly, etc., which he continues to promote with his second wife, Sage Robbins.

He also appeared in the “Tony Robbins: I Am Not Your Guru” Netflix documentary, released in 2016, and filmed at his “Date with Destiny” event in 2014. His “Breakthrough with Tony Robbins” NBC reality show was cancelled after two episodes in 2010 due to low ratings. The show was later picked up by Oprah Winfrey’s OWN network and, in 2012, Robbins began co-hosting a TV show on OWN (Oprah’s Lifeclass).

Did you know:

  • That his growth spurt in his teenage years was attributed to a pituitary tumor;
  • That his father was of Croatian descent as indicated by Robbins’ birth surname (Mohorovic) which was later changed to Robbins following Robbins’ adoption by his step-father Jim Robbins;
  • That, in 2014, he acquired rights to launch a Major League Soccer franchise in Los Angeles with a group of other investors;
  • That, in 2016, he purchased an eSports professional gaming organisation, Team Liquid, which won a Dota 2 tournament
  • That his first infomercial for his self-help program “Personal Power” was released in 1988;
  • That he played cameo roles in the films Reality Bites, The Cable Guy and Shallow Hal. He was also seen in The Roseanne Show and The Sopranos;
  • That his net worth is estimated to be about 480 million US dollars.

Most Inspiring Anthony Jay Robbins Quotes

“Identify your problems,
but give your power and energy to solutions.”

“Your past does not equal your future.”

“It’s what you practice in private that you will be
ewarded for in public.”

“Every problem is a gift–without problems we would not grow.”

“In life you need either inspiration or desperation.”

“If you can’t, you must. If you must, you can.”

“Success is doing what you want to do,
when you want, where you want,
with whom you want, as much as you want.”

“We can change our lives. We can do, have,
and be exactly what we wish.”

“When you are grateful fear disappears and abundance appears.”

“The meeting of preparation with opportunity generates the offspring we call luck.”
Tony Robbins in Unlimited Power

“If you do what you’ve always done,
you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.”

“The quality of your life is the quality of your relationships.”

“It is in your moments of decision that your destiny is shaped.”

“A real decision is measured by the fact
that you’ve taken a new action.
If there’s no action, you haven’t truly decided.”

“You see, in life, lots of people know what to do,
but few people actually do what they know.
Knowing is not enough! You must take action.”

“Most people fail in life because they major in minor things.”

“Successful people ask better questions,
and as a result, they get better answers.”

“The only thing that’s keeping you from getting
what you want is the story you keep telling yourself.”

“Only those who have learned the power of sincere
and selfless contribution experience life’s deepest joy: true fulfillment.”

“I challenge you to make your life a masterpiece.
I challenge you to join the ranks of those people
who live what they teach, who walk their talk.”

“You don’t have to have a reason to feel good
you’re alive; you can feel good for no reason at all!”

“It’s not what we do once
in a while that shapes our lives,
but what we do consistently.”

“Success in life is the result of good judgment.
Good judgment is usually the result of experience.
Experience is usually the result of bad judgment.”

“People are not lazy, they simply have impotent goals.
That is goals that do not inspire them.”

“If you talk about it, it’s a dream, if you envision it,
it’s possible, but if you schedule it, it’s real.”

“Why live an ordinary life,
when you can live an extraordinary one.”

“Any time you sincerely want to make a change,
the first thing you must do is to raise your standards.”

“Stay committed to your decisions,
but stay flexible in your approach.”

“The more rejection you get, the better you are,
the more you’ve learned, the closer you are to your outcome…
If you can handle rejection, you’ll learn to get everything you want.”

“Take the opportunity to learn from your mistakes:
find the cause of your problem and eliminate it.
Don’t try to be perfect; just be an excellent example of being human.”


Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes

he leading voice of intellectual culture in the United States, one of the most frequently quoted individuals to this day, and deemed “the most steadily attractive lecturer in America” and “one of the pioneers of the lecturing system” by James Russell Lowell, Ralph Waldo Emerson, known to friends and family as “Waldo”, born in 1803 in Boston, rose from moderate beginnings to the ranks of the most famous essayists, lecturers, philosophers, abolitionists and poets at the helm of the mid-19th century transcendentalist movement that have proven influential for an array of thinkers, philosophers and writers that came after.

Throughout his life, he gave more than 1500 public lectures all over the United States and published several of his penned essays that continue to raise awareness on various personal development (individuality, freedom, relationship between the soul and the surrounding world) and political issues (predominantly abolition of slavery).

Espousing the abolition of slavery from the mid-1840s, he is also regarded as one of the main figures to have advocated for the cause before Abraham Lincoln himself. Throughout his lifetime, the Harvard graduate made the acquaintance of various prominent figures of the time, such as Prince Achille Murat, the nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte, that he believed an important figure in the development of his ideas associated with religion, society, philosophy, and government.

After serving as a junior pastor in his 20s, he resolved to leave the ministry after the death of his first wife Ellen by virtue of disagreements with his superiors. After inheriting from his first wife after her death, he pursued a teaching and lecturing career, and joined the “Transcendental Club” attended by various proponents of the movement, including women, such as one of his closest colleagues, Margaret Fuller, who later proved one of the most significant figures of transcendentalism and the first editor of the transcendental journal, The Dial, in the early 1840s.

In the 1840s, Emerson emerged as a popular lecturer in New England and other parts of the US with as many as 80 lectures per year in the 1850s. During the Civil War, he heavily advocated for civil rights of slaves. His religious views were seen as radical at the time, having believed that all things are connected to God, making all things divine. He died from pneumonia in 1882.  

Did you know:

  • That Emerson was only one of the five of a total of eight children in his family that survived to adulthood;
  • That he did not acquire any greater wealth until inheriting a rather large sum of money following his first wife’s death;
  • That he was a proponent of abolition of slavery throughout most of his life but struggled with the concept of equality of races until the 1850s when he became more publicly involved in the movement;
  • That he decided to go by his middle name in his senior year at Harvard;
  • That he served as Class Poet at Harvard and presented an original poem on Harvard’s Class Day one month before graduation (August 29, 1821) at the age of 18;
  • That he travelled to Europe various times: in 1833, he visited Italy and Paris, followed by a visit to England, where he met several influential figures on his life – William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Thomas Carlyle;
  • He also visited Europe during the Springtime of Nations in 1848;
  • In addition to more than a dozen of books of his essays, he also published several books of poetry;
  • He was also a supporter of the spread of community libraries in the 19th century.

Most Inspiring Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes

“Do not go where the path may lead,
go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying
to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”

“People do not seem to realize that their opinion
of the world is also a confession of their character.”

“The only person you are destined to become
is the person you decide to be.”

“What you do speaks so loudly
that I cannot hear what you say.”

“To be great is to be misunderstood.”

“You cannot do a kindness too soon,
for you never know how soon it will be too late.”

“Tomorrow is a new day.
You shall begin it serenely and with too high
a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.”

“Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind.”

“Once you make a decision,
the universe conspires to make it happen.”

“For every minute you are angry
you lose sixty seconds of happiness.”

“When it is dark enough,
you can see the stars.”

“Peace cannot be achieved through violence;
it can only be attained through understanding.”

“Without ambition one starts nothing. Without work one finishes nothing.
The prize will not be sent to you. You have to win it.”

“Dare to live the life you have dreamed for yourself.
Go forward and make your dreams come true.”

“Most of the shadows of this life are caused
by standing in one’s own sunshine.”

“It is one of the blessings of old friends
that you can afford to be stupid with them.”

“What lies behind us and what lies
before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”

“Always do what you are afraid to do.”

“The only way to have a friend is to be one.”

“Shallow men believe in luck or in circumstance.
Strong men believe in cause and effect.”

“It is easy to live for others, everybody does.
I call on you to live for yourself.”

“Happiness is a perfume you cannot
pour on others without getting some on yourself.”


Bruce Lee Quotes

Bruce Lee was a famous martial artist, actor, martial arts instructor and philosopher who is considered the most influential martial artist of all time who helped break down stereotypes in the Western world about Asians and martial arts in general.

Born in 1940 in San Francisco as Lee Jun-Fan, but commonly known as Bruce Lee, to a Han Chinese father and Eurasian mother, he was introduced to the world of film and started appearing in films from a small age owing to his father’s profession as a famous Cantonese opera star. He started training martial arts after being involved in several street fights.

His trainer Yip Man wanted Bruce and other students to stop fighting in the streets and rather channel their desire to fight into organised competitions. Bruce won his school’s boxing tournament and even the Hong Kong cha-cha championship (his family had moved to Hong Kong when Bruce was only three months old).

As his ‘affinity’ for street fights continued, his parents believed it would be better to send him back to the United States to stay with his older sister Agnes. In 1959, he began teaching his own version of the Wing Chun kung-fu style that he had been taught by Yip Man and opened his first martial arts school in Seattle. He enrolled in the University of Washington in Seattle with his major in drama but dropped out in 1964 to open another martial arts school in Oakland with the renowned martial artist James Yimm Lee.

At the time, he was also dreaming of a film career which he abandoned in favour of martial arts which changed in the mid-1960s when he was cast as Kato in a short-lived one-season long series The Green Hornet which turned out to be the first popular show on American TV on Asian martial arts and the springboard that subsequently helped skyrocket Lee’s career as an actor.

His breakthrough in Hollywood came in the early 1970s with his first leading role The Big Boss (1971). He is credited with popularising martial arts in the US and changing the perceptions of Americans on Asian-Americans and Asians in general. Even though he is best known for his TV and film roles and martial arts training, he was also an avid poet and passionate about philosophy, having been influenced by the likes of Buddhism and Krishnamurti. He considered martial arts his path of self-expression of his eclectic beliefs, as reflected in his life and work.

  • That he was born in San Francisco but raised in Hong Kong;
  • That he only became a famous Hollywood actor in the late 1960s and early 1970s before his untimely death in 1973;
  • That his last film Enter the Dragon became one of the highest-grossing films of all time (350 million dollars worldwide);
  • That he was also well-read in philosophy and was influenced by the likes of Krishnamurti, Taoism and Buddhism but he rejected Confucianism;
  • That he also wrote poems?

Most Inspiring Bruce Lee Quotes

If you spend too much time thinking
about a thing, you’ll never get it done.

I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations
and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.

Do not pray for an easy life,
pray for the strength to endure a difficult one.

A wise man can learn more from a foolish questio
than a fool can learn from a wise answer.

Absorb what is useful,
discard what is useless and add what is specifically your own.

To hell with circumstances;
I create opportunities.

I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once,
but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.

Real living is living for others.

The more we value things,
the less we value ourselves.

If you love life, don’t waste time,
for time is what life is made up of.

Showing off is the fool’s idea of glory.

Life’s battles don’t always
go to the stronger or faster man.
But sooner or later the man who wins,
is the man who thinks he can.

The successful warrior is the average man,
with laser-like focus.

Knowing is not enough, we must apply.
Willing is not enough, we must do.

In the middle of chaos lies opportunity.

For it is easy to criticize and break down the spirit of others,
but to know yourself takes a lifetime.

Be happy, but never satisfied.

Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself,
do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.

The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering.

You must be shapeless, formless, like water.
When you pour water in a cup, it becomes the cup.
When you pour water in a bottle, it becomes the bottle.
When you pour water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot.
Water can drip and it can crash.
Become like water my friend.


Walt Disney Quotes

Walter Elias Disney or Walt Disney in short was an American animator, film producer and voice actor, best known for his animated characters, such as Mickey and Minnie Mouse. He revolutionised the animated film industry in Hollywood.

Born in 1901 in Chicago, he developed an interest in drawing from an early age after drawing a horse for a nearby doctor. He developed his skill by copying front-page cartoons of the Appeal to Reason newspaper his father was subscribed to. He became acquainted with motion pictures in grammar school through his classmate Walter Pfeiffer, attended Saturday courses at the Kansas City Art Institute and took a correspondence course in cartooning.

He also drew pictures about World War I at his school and drew cartoons on his ambulance while he worked as an ambulance driver for the Red Cross during the same war and also had some published. Later on, he drew illustrations as an apprentice at an art studio in Kansas City where he returned in late 1919. He also took night courses at the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts. After being laid off, he founded a business with his friend Iwerks which did not perform well. He joined the ranks of the Kansas City Film Ad Company where he learnt about animation.

His new ideas associate therewith were not met with approval, so he opened a new small business in which he created short animated films. Unfortunately, it also did not perform well which led to the decision to move to Hollywood in 1923. His iconic first animated character, Mickey Mouse, was developed in 1928 and is supposedly based on a pet mouse he adopted although these claims have never been sufficiently substantiated.

In 1934, Disney decided he needed to create a first feature-length animated film which experts in the industry believed would tank his company. Ultimately, Snow White became the most successful sound film made to 1938 and the most successful film at the box office in the same year. In the 1950s, Disney decided to expand into the world of his now famous theme parks, based on the Tivoli park in Copenhagen he visited with his family, opening Disneyland in 1955.

Its construction was funded by his TV programmes which have since become a staple in the entertainment industry and beyond. He continues to be regarded as a cultural icon and a visionary before his time.

  • That he holds the record for most Oscars awarded to an individual (22);
  • That he learnt to draw by copying front-page cartoons by Ryan Walker in the Appeal to Reason newspaper and his first commissioned drawing was of a horse of a retired local doctor;
  • He went bankrupt several times before making it big in the animation industry
  • He was told several times that he was never going to make it as an artist and that his drawings would never amount to anything
  • The Disney brand has expanded into a multi-billion dollar business that no longer includes just cartoons but also several theme parks, TV channels and even the Star Wars franchise?

Most Inspiring Walt Disney Quotes

All our dreams can come true,
if we have the courage to pursue them.

That’s the real trouble with the world.
Too many people grow up.

When you’re curious, you find lots of interesting things to do.

The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.

A man should never neglect his family for business.

Why worry? If you’ve done the very best you can,
then worrying won’t make it any better.

Our greatest natural resource
is the minds of our children.

If you can dream, you can do it.
Always remember that this whole
thing was started by a mouse.

It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.

When you believe in a thing,
believe in it all the way,
implicitly and unquestionable.

Laughter is timeless,
imagination has no age, dreams are forever.

First, think. Second, dream.
Third, believe. And finally, dare.

Get a good idea and stay with it.
Dog it, and work at it until it’s done right.

You may not realize it when it happens,
but a kick in the teeth may be
the best thing in the world for you.

We keep moving forward, opening new doors,
and doing new things,
because we’re curious and curiosity
keeps leading us down new paths.


Mahatma Gandhi Quotes

Mahatma Gandhi was an Indian lawyer, activist, and political ethicist, best known for employing non-violent resistance principles that ultimately enabled India to gain its independence in the 1940s. He inspired several other similar civil rights movements around the world, most notably in the US by way of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the American Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s.

Born Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (the honorific ‘Mahatma’ or ‘venerable’ was first used in 1914 in South Africa but has now replaced his original name all over the world) into a Hindu family of the Vaishya varna (third in the order of the caste hierarchy in place in India at the time), he developed an affinity for truth and love as supreme values thanks to epic characters he learnt about in Indian classics (Shravana and king Harischandra) that he read as a child.

Gandhi also developed a respect for various religions owing to the diverse religious background of his family and was heavily influenced by his pious mother who belonged to the Krishna-based Pranami tradition which uses various religious texts, such as the Bhagavad Gita, and whose teachings are said to include the main concepts contained in the Quran and the Bible, thus allowing Gandhi to become acquainted with the diversity of religions from an early age. At the age of 18, he decided to pursue law studies in London despite his family’s disapproval.

Completing his studies at the age of 22, he was called to the bar and returned to Bombay where his ambitions to practice law proved futile as he was unable to cross-examine witnesses. Luckily for him, he was asked to represent an Indian merchant in South Africa where he remained for 21 years and which heavily influenced his beliefs and life in general.

As a person of colour, he was discriminated against and successfully organised a non-violent protest in Johannesburg in 1906 for the first time. This is when his devotion to truth – satyagraha – concept developed as it was subsequently promulgated following his return to India in 1915 at the request of the Indian liberal leader Gopal Krishna Gokhale. He assumed leadership of the Indian National Congress in 1920 and introduced the concept of non-violent protest in the fight for Indian self-rule.

He was imprisoned several times for his efforts by the British but continued to fight for the independence of India which was achieved in 1947, however, not according to his wishes as the Western part of India was partitioned to become present-day Pakistan. His resistance thereto ultimately led to his violent assassination in 1948 but his ideas continued to live on in the US Civil Rights Movement and other non-violent-protest-based movements for various causes.

  • That he was unable to find work in India as a lawyer so he moved to South Africa in 1893 and only returned to his homeland 21 years later;
  • That he first tried out his non-violent resistance principles in South Africa;
  • He decided to live modestly to relate to the poor (especially the so-called ‘Untouchables’) and advocated for women’s rights, fought against poverty and self-rule;
  • He challenged the salt tax with the famous 400-kilometre Dandi Salt March;
  • He underwent several fasts in order to help combat religious unrest upon the partitioning of India and Pakistan which led to his untimely assassination by a Hindu nationalist in 1948?

Famous and Inspiring Mahatma Gandhi Quotes

If we could change ourselves,
the tendencies in the world would also change.
As a man changes his own nature,
so does the attitude of the world change towards him.
We need not wait to see what others do.

A man is but a product of his thoughts.
What he thinks he becomes.

I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.

Nobody can hurt me without my permission.

Happiness is when what you think,
what you say, and what you do are in harmony.

The weak can never forgive.
Forgiveness is an attribute of the strong.

An ounce of practice is worth a thousand words.

A coward is incapable of exhibiting love;
it is the prerogative of the brave.

Live as if you were to die tomorrow.
Learn as if you were to live forever.

Freedom is not worth having if it does not include
the freedom to make mistakes.

Service which is rendered without joy helps
neither the servant nor the served.

If we are to teach real peace in this world,
and if we are to carry on a real war against war,
we shall have to begin with the children.

The best way to find yourself is to
lose yourself in the service of others.

In a gentle way, you can shake the world.

If I have the belief that I can do it,
I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it even if
I may not have it at the beginning.

Hate the sin, love the sinner.

Glory lies in the attempt to reach one’s goal and not in reaching it.

Whenever you are confronted with an opponent, conquer him with love.

Permanent good can never be the outcome of untruth and violence.

The future depends on what you do today.

To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act
is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs,
but not every man’s greed.

It’s the action, not the fruit of the action, that’s important.
You have to do the right thing.
It may not be in your power,
may not be in your time, that there’ll be any fruit.
But that doesn’t mean you stop doing the right thing.
You may never know what results come from your action.
But if you do nothing, there will be no result.

Strength does not come from physical capacity.
It comes from an indomitable will.

You don’t know who is important
to you until you actually lose them.

I object to violence because
when it appears to do good,
the good is only temporary;
the evil it does is permanent.

You may never know what results come of your actions,
but if you do nothing, there will be no results.

I cannot conceive of a greater loss
than the loss of one’s self-respect.

You must not lose faith in humanity.
Humanity is like an ocean;
if a few drops of the ocean are dirty,
the ocean does not become dirty.


Arnold Schwarzenegger Quotes

Born in 1947 in a small village close to the second-largest city in Austria, Graz, to an Austrian father and Czech mother, Arnold Schwarzenegger became engaged in sports from an early age under the influence of his athlete father who actually wanted him and his older brother Meinhard to become champions in Bavarian curling. He started weightlifting at the age of 14 and trained at a gym in Graz where he also watched bodybuilding icons, such as Steve Reeves, on the big screen, starting to believe he could make it big in this sport despite his poor background and origin.

According to Schwarzenegger, Reeves allowed him to believe in himself when nobody else did and credits his presence in his life through the movie screen as an important catalyst for his many subsequent successes both in sports and elsewhere. Schwarzenegger also believes that his strict upbringing – which was regarded as normal at the time – further strengthened his desire to succeed, to become rich and to become a rebel instead of a conformist, stating that he wanted “to be somebody”.

During his obligatory one year of service in the Austrian Army at the age of 18, he entered and won the Junior Mr. Europe contest. After placing second in another contest in Graz, he was given the opportunity to travel to the Mr. Universe contest held in London, where he placed second and impressed one of the judges Charles Bennett to the extent that he decided to train him.

Schwarzenegger believes that the Mr. Universe competition was what allowed him to subsequently travel to the USA, “the land of opportunity” where he felt he could fulfil his dreams of becoming successful. After becoming the youngest Mr. Universe at the age of 20, which he also accredits to the presence of Mr. Bennett’s family who he feels helped him become more sophisticated and improve his knowledge of English, he decided to travel to the US at the age of 21.

After a successful bodybuilding career (he is considered one of the most important bodybuilders of all time), he chose to venture into the world of film where he was initially frowned upon due to his bodybuilding background and thick Austrian accent. He was also looked down upon due to his long surname and ‘funny body’. He pushed on and made it big in the box-office hit, Conan the Barbarian, in 1982. In 2003, he decided to tackle another ambition: politics, having always dreamt of serving as a leader.

He served as the Governor of California on the Republican ticket for two terms until 2010. In addition to politics, bodybuilding and acting, he has also successfully pursued other business ventures and investments and became a millionaire at the age of 30.

Did you know:

  • That he’d dreamed of moving to the US since he was 10 years old;
  • That he broke into his gym in Graz during the weekends when it was closed in order to be able to train and get closer to his dream
  • That he kept trying for roles in Hollywood even after being rejected several times for his strong accent and not being taken seriously due to his bodybuilding career and ultimately became the biggest movie star in the world in the 1990s because he wanted to be the best in everything he did (that also led to him being Mr. Olympia in bodybuilding because he wanted to become the best bodybuilder in the world);
  • That, upon his arrival to the US to achieve his big dream of becoming the best bodybuilder in the world, he had only 20 dollars in his pocket and some sweaty gym clothes in his bag?

Best Arnold Schwarzenegger quotes

Strength does not come from winning.
Your struggles develop your strengths.
When you go through hardships
and decide not to surrender, that is strength.

What is the point of being on this Earth
if you are going to be like everyone else?

Just like in bodybuilding, failure is also a necessary
experience for growth in our own lives,
for if we’re never tested to our limits,
how will we know how strong we really are?
How will we ever grow?

If you want to turn a vision into reality,
you have to give 100% and never stop
believing in your dream.

For me life is continuously being hungry.
The meaning of life is not simply to exist,
to survive, but to move ahead,
to go up, to achieve, to conquer.

Help others and give something back.
I guarantee you will discover
that while public service improves the
lives and the world around you,
its greatest reward is the enrichment
and new meaning it will bring your own life.

The resistance that you fight physically in the gym
and the resistance that you fight in life
can only build a strong character.

What we face may look insurmountable.
But I learned something from all those
years of training and competing.
I learned something from all those sets and reps when
I didn’t think I could lift another ounce of weight.
What I learned is that we are always stronger than we know.

The mind is the limit.
As long as the mind can envision
the fact that you can do something,
you can do it, as long as you really believe 100 percent.

Positive thinking can be contagious.
Being surrounded by winners
helps you develop into a winner.

Failure is not an option.
Everyone has to succeed.

You have to remember something:
Everybody pities the weak; jealousy you have to earn.

It’s not what you get out of life that counts.
Break your mirrors! In our society that is so self-absorbed,
begin to look less at yourself and more at each other.
You’ll get more satisfaction from havingimproved your neighbourhood,
your town, your state, your country, and your fellow human beings
than you’ll ever get from your muscles,
your figure, your automobile, your house, or your credit rating.

The more knowledge you have,
the more you’re free to rely on your instincts.

Be hungry for success, hungry to make your mark,
hungry to be seen and to be heard and to have an effect.
And as you move up and become successful,
make sure also to be hungry for helping others.