Quotes About Catastrophes

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Quotes About Catastrophes

Whenever anyone wants others to do their work they call upon their Altruism. Never mind your own needs, they say, Think of the needs of ... of whoever. Of the state. Of the poor. Of the Army, of the King. Of God. The list goes on and on. How many catastrophes were launched with the words Think of yourself? Its the king and country crowd who light the torch of destruction.
— Andrew Ryan —

Either God can do nothing to stop catastrophes like this, or he doesn't care to, or he doesn't exist. God is either impotent, evil, or imaginary. Take your pick, and choose wisely.
The only sense to make of tragedies like this is that terrible things can happen to perfectly innocent people. This understanding inspires compassion.
Religious faith, on the other hand, erodes compassion. Thoughts like, 'this might be all part of God's plan,' or 'there are no accidents in life,' or 'everyone on some level gets what he or she deserves' - these ideas are not only stupid, they are extraordinarily callous. They are nothing more than a childish refusal to connect with the suffering of other human beings. It is time to grow up and let our hearts break at moments like this.

— Sam Harris

Later, I would come to think of those first days as the time when we learned as a species that we had worried over the wrong things: the hole in the ozone layer, the melting of the ice caps, West Nile and swine flu and killer bees. But I guess it never is what you worry over that comes to pass in the end. The real catastrophes are always different-unimagined, unprepared for, unknown.

— Karen Thompson Walker

Unless we are willing to escape into sentimentality or fantasy, often the best we can do with catastrophes, even our own, is to find out exactly what happened and restore some of the missing parts.

— Norman Maclean

Above all there's a lack of personal discipline, manners, decorum, natural discretion. If everyone causes their own individual catastrophes, how can there fail to be more general catastrophes? After all, the passengers on a bus or streetcar make up a community of a kind. But they don't see it that way, not even in a moment of danger. As they see it they are bound always to be the other's enemy: for political, social, all sorts of reasons. Where so much hate has been bottled up, it is vented on inanimate things, and provokes the celebrated perversity of inanimate things. Sending experts into other countries won't help much, so long as each individual refuses to work out his own personal traffic plan. There is a wisdom in the accident of language by which there is a single word, "traffic," for movement in the streets, and for people's dealings with one another.

— Joseph Roth

There are some catastrophes that a poor writer's pen cannot describe and which he is obliged to leave to the imagination of his readers with a bald statement of the facts.

— Alexandre Dumas

The anxiety prevalent in our day and the succession of economic and political catastrophes our world has been going through are both symptoms of the same underlying cause, namely the traumatic changes occurring in Western society. Fascist and Nazi totalitarianism, for example, do not occur because a Hitler or Mussolini decides to seize power. When a nation, rather, is prey to insupportable economic want and is psychologically and spiritually empty, totalitarianism comes in to fill the vacuum; and the people sell their freedom as a necessity for getting rid of the anxiety which is too great for them to bear any longer.

— Rollo May

To-night, as ages hence, people would say this, or shut their doors on them, turn in bereaved agony from them, or toward them with love saying: "That is our star up there, yours and mine"; steer by them above the clouds or lost at sea, or standing in the spray on the forecastle head, watch them, suddenly, careen; put their faith or lack of it in them; train, in a thousand observatories, feeble telescopes upon them, across whose lenses swam mysterious swarms of stars and clouds of dead dark stars, catastrophes of exploding suns, or giant Antares raging to its end-a smouldering ember yet five hundred times greater than the earth's sun.

— Malcolm Lowry

We have big, big problems - flooding, earthquake, and many foolish things which now people are doing - I mean, these self-made catastrophes. We are able to give to every man on the street the possibilities to help himself. And to fight for this was one of my duties.

— Frei Otto

We worry about the seemingly ever-increasing number of natural catastrophes. Yet this is mainly a consequence of CNN - we see many more, but the number is roughly constant, and we manage to deal much better with them over time. Globally, the death rate from catastrophes has dropped about fifty-fold over the past century.

— Bjorn Lomborg

I think psychology and self-reflection is one of the major catastrophes of the twentieth century.

— Werner Herzog

The communications revolution has given millions of people both a wider and more detailed understanding of the world. Because of technology, ordinary citizens enjoy access to information that formerly was available only to elites and nation-states. One consequence of this change is that citizens have become acutely conscious of environmental destruction, entrenched poverty, health catastrophes, human rights abuses, failing education systems, and escalating violence. Another consequence is that people possess powerful communication tools to coordinate efforts to attack those problems.

— David Bornstein

I've never tried to keep a specific person alive before, and it's much more troublesome than I would have believed. But that's probably just because it's you. Ordinary people seem to make it through the day without so many catastrophes.

— Stephenie Meyer

The fear of climatic catastrophes is an ancient one and not unlike our fear of strangers. In the past, people believed that the climate almost always changes for the worse, and only rarely for the better - God's punishment for sinful behavior.

— Hans Von Storch

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