What is objectionable, what is dangerous, about extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.
—Robert F. Kennedy (1925–68) American Politician, Civil Rights Activist
Persecution was at least a sign of personal interest. Tolerance is composed of nine parts of apathy to one of brotherly love.
—Frank Moore Colby (1865–1925) American Encyclopedia Editor, Essayist
Through the centuries, the history of peoples is but a lesson in mutual tolerance.
—Emile Zola (1840–1902) French Novelist
Hypocrisy, the lie, is the true sister of evil, intolerance, and cruelty.
—Raisa Gorbacheva (1932–99) Russian Activist
I’m quite sure that … I have no race prejudices, and I think I have no color prejudices nor caste prejudices nor creed prejudices. Indeed, I know it. I can stand any society. All that I care to know is that a man is a human being—that is enough for me he can’t be any worse.
—Mark Twain (1835–1910) American Humorist
A thick skin is a gift from God.
—Konrad Adenauer (1876–1967) German Statesman
Nothing dies so hard, or rallies so often as intolerance.
—Henry Ward Beecher (1813–87) American Clergyman, Writer
Whereas each man claims his freedom as a matter of right, the freedom he accords to other men is a matter of toleration.
—Walter Lippmann (1889–1974) American Journalist, Political Commentator, Writer
There is divine beauty in learning, just as there is human beauty in tolerance. To learn means to accept the postulate that life did not begin at my birth. Others have been here before me, and I walk in their footsteps. The books I have read were composed by generations of fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, teachers and disciples. I am the sum total of their experiences, their quests. And so are you.
—Elie Wiesel (1928–2016) Romanian-born American Writer, Professor, Political Activist
Tolerance becomes a crime when applied to evil.
—Thomas Mann (1875–1955) German Novelist, Short Story Writer, Social Critic, Philanthropist, Essayist
Until you have learned to be tolerant with those who do not always agree with you; until you have cultivated the habit of saying some kind word of those whom you do not admire; until you have formed the habit of looking for the good instead of the bad there is in others, you will be neither successful nor happy.
—Napoleon Hill (1883–1970) American Author, Journalist, Attorney, Lecturer
Intolerance respecting other people’s religion is toleration itself in comparison with intolerance respecting other people’s art.
—Wallace Stevens (1879–1955) American Poet
Light came to me when I realized that I did not have to consider any racial group as a whole. God made them duck by duck and that was the only way I could see them.
—Zora Neale Hurston (1891–1960) American Novelist
Whenever you hold a fellow creature in distress, remember that he is a man.
—Seneca the Younger (Lucius Annaeus Seneca) (c.4 BCE–65 CE) Roman Stoic Philosopher, Statesman, Tragedian
Prejudices, it is well known, are most difficult to eradicate from the heart whose soil has never been loosened or fertilized by education; they grow there, firm as weeds among rocks.
—Charlotte Bronte (1816–1855) English Novelist, Poet
When travelling with someone, take large doses of patience and tolerance with your morning coffee
—Helen Hayes (1900–93) American Actor, Philanthropist
What is tolerance?—it is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other’s folly—that is the first law of nature.
—Voltaire (1694–1778) French Philosopher, Author
Intolerance is the “Do Not Touch” sign on something that cannot bear touching. We do not mind having our hair ruffled, but we will not tolerate any familiarity with the toupee which covers our baldness.
—Eric Hoffer (1902–83) American Philosopher, Author
There is a limit at which forbearance ceases to be a virtue.
—Edmund Burke (1729–97) British Philosopher, Statesman
I always prefer to believe the best of everybody — it saves so much trouble.
—Rudyard Kipling (1865–1936) British Children’s Books Writer, Short story, Novelist, Poet, Journalist
Intolerance betrays want of faith in one’s cause.
—Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869–1948) Indian Hindu Political leader
As no roads are so rough as those that have just been mended, so no sinners are so intolerant as those that have just turned saints.
—Charles Caleb Colton (c.1780–1832) English Clergyman, Aphorist
Toleration is good for all, or it is good for none.
—Edmund Burke (1729–97) British Philosopher, Statesman
If you cannot mould yourself entirely as you would wish, how can you expect other people to be entirely to your liking?
—Thomas a Kempis (1379–1471) German Religious Priest, Writer
Toleration is the best religion.
—Victor Hugo (1802–85) French Novelist
Do you want a sign that you’re asleep? Here it is: you’re suffering. Suffering is a sign that you’re out of touch with the truth. Suffering is given to you that you might open your eyes to the truth, that you might understand that there’s falsehood somewhere, just as physical pain is given to you so you will understand that there is disease or illness somewhere. Suffering occurs when you clash with reality. When your illusions clash with reality, when your falsehoods clash with truth, then you have suffering. Otherwise there is no suffering.
—Anthony de Mello (1931–87) Indian-born American Theologian
The greatest and noblest pleasure which men can have in this world is to discover new truths; and the next is to shake off old prejudices.
—Frederick II of Prussia (1712–86) Prussian Monarch
It is the enemy who can truly teach us to practice the virtues of compassion and tolerance.
—The 14th Dalai Lama (b.1935) Tibetan Buddhist Religious Leader, Civil Rights Leader, Philosopher, Author
The Lord who proclaimed the Law of Sinai is the God of all nations.
—The Talmud Sacred Text of the Jewish Faith
Tolerance is the positive and cordial effort to understand another’s beliefs, practices, and habits without necessarily sharing or accepting them.
—Joshua L. Liebman (1907–48) American Jewish Rabbi, Author