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Quotes:   Agnosticism, Agnostic

"I am an atheist, out and out. It took me a long time to say it. I've been an atheist for years and years, but somehow I felt it was intellectually unrespectable to say that one is an atheist, because it assumed knowledge that one didn't have. Somehow it was better to say one was a humanist or agnostic. I don't have the evidence to prove that God doesn't exist, but I so strongly suspect that he doesn't that I don't want to waste my time."
(Isaac Asimov / 1920-1992)

""I have observed that the world has suffered far less from ignorance than from pretensions to knowledge. It is not skeptics or explorers but fanatics and ideologues who menace decency and progress. No agnostic ever burned anyone at the stake or tortur."
(Daniel J. Boorstin, American historian and author / 1914 - 2004)

"I do not consider it an insult, but rather a compliment to be called an agnostic. I do not pretend to know where many ignorant men are sure - that is all that agnosticism means."
(Clarence Darrow / 1857-1938 / Scopes trial / 1925)

"The mystery of the beginning of all things is insoluble by us, and I for one must be content to remain an agnostic."
(Charles Darwin / 1809-1882 / quoted from James A. Haught, "Breaking the Last Taboo" / 1996)

"I have always considered "Pascal's Wager" a questionable bet to place. Any God worth "believing in" would surely prefer an honest agnostic to a calculating hypocrite."
(Alan Dershowitz)

"I am, like much, agnostic, i.e. conscious of my incapacity to say anything about what it is agreed to call by the word God."
(Albert Jacquard / born in 1925 / Small Philosophy for the Use of the Non-Philosophers / 1997)

"Well, I tell you, if I have been wrong in my agnosticism, when I die I'll walk up to God in a manly way and say, Sir, I made an honest mistake."
(Henry Louis Mencken / 1880-1956)

"A man who is an agnostic by inheritance, so that he doesn't remember any time that he wasn't, has almost no hatred for the religious."
(Henry Louis Mencken / 1880-1956)

"In one of his last appearances, Mitterrand, the agnostic president, was asked what the real God might say to him if he went to heaven. God would say: "At last, you know." And I would hope that He would add, "Welcome.""
(Francois Mitterand, French socialist president / 1916-1996 / on PBS)

"As to the gods, I have no means of knowing either that they exist or do not exist."
(Protagoras / 485-410 BC / in Plato's Theaetetus)

"The prayer of the agnostic: "O God, if there is a God, save my soul if I have a soul."
(Ernest Renan / 1823-1892)

"An atheist, like a Christian, holds that we can know whether or not there is a God. The Christian holds that we can know there is a God; the atheist, that we can know there is not. The Agnostic suspends judgment, saying that there are not sufficient grounds either for affirmation or for denial. At the same time, an Agnostic may hold that the existence of God, though not impossible, is very improbable; he may even hold it so improbable that it is not worth considering in practice. In that case, he is not far removed from atheism."
(Bertrand Russell / 1872-1970)

"The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing."
(Socrates / 470-399 BEC)

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