„Philosophy has taught me to rely on my own convictions rather than on the judgements of others and to concern myself less with whether I am well thought of than whether what I do or say is evil.“
Docuit me ipsa philosophia a propria potius conscientia quam ab externis pendere iuditiis, cogitareque semper, non tam ne male audiam, quam ne quid male vel dicam ipse vel agam.

— Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, 25. 160; translation by A. Robert Caponigri
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Giovanni Pico della Mirandola
italienischer Humanist 1463 - 1494
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„I don’t rely on any sources other than my own compatriots.“

— Reza Pahlavi Last crown prince of the former Imperial State of Iran 1960
As quoted by Deborah Solomon, New York Times: Questions for Reza Pahlavi http://www.rezapahlavi.org/details_article.php?article=379&page=4, The New York Times, June 26, 2009.

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„I am interested in entertaining people, in bringing pleasure, particularly laughter, to others, rather than being concerned with "expressing" myself with obscure creative impressions.“

— Walt Disney American film producer and businessman 1901 - 1966
Quoted in "The man behind 'The Magic Kingdom'" in The Gazette [Colorado Springs http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4191/is_20050507/ai_n14625292/print (7 May 2005)]

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„I prefer to be true to myself, even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, rather than to be false, and incur my own abhorrence.“

— Frederick Douglass American social reformer, orator, writer and statesman 1818 - 1895
Context: I look upon my departure from Colonel Lloyd's plantation as one of the most interesting events of my life. It is possible, and even quite probable, that but for the mere circumstance of being removed from that plantation to Baltimore, I should have to-day, instead of being here seated by my own table, in the enjoyment of freedom and the happiness of home, writing this Narrative, been confined in the galling chains of slavery. Going to live at Baltimore laid the foundation, and opened the gateway, to all my subsequent prosperity. I have ever regarded it as the first plain manifestation of that kind providence which has ever since attended me, and marked my life with so many favors. I regarded the selection of myself as being somewhat remarkable. There were a number of slave children that might have been sent from the plantation to Baltimore. There were those younger, those older, and those of the same age. I was chosen from among them all, and was the first, last, and only choice. I may be deemed superstitions, and even egotistical, in regarding this event as a special interposition of divine Providence in my favor. But I should be false to the earliest sentiments of my soul, if I suppressed the opinion. I prefer to be true to myself, even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, rather than to be false, and incur my own abhorrence. From my earliest recollection, I date the entertainment of a deep conviction that slavery would not always be able to hold me within its foul embrace; and in the darkest hours of my career in slavery, this living word of faith and spirit of hope departed not from me, but remained like ministering angels to cheer me through the gloom. This good spirit was from God, and to him I offer thanksgiving and praise. Ch. 5

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„And my aim in my life is to make picture and drawings, as many and as well as I can, then, at the end of my life, I hope to pass away, looking back with love and tender regret, and thinking: "Oh, pictures I might have made!" Theo, I declare I prefer to think how arms, legs, head are attached to the trunk, rather than whether I myself am or am not more or less an artist.“

— Vincent Van Gogh Dutch post-Impressionist painter (1853-1890) 1853 - 1890
Quote in his letter to brother Theo, from Drenthe, The Netherlands, Autumn 1883; as quoted in Vincent van Gogh, edited by Alfred H. Barr; Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1935 https://www.moma.org/documents/moma_catalogue_1996_300061887.pdf, (letter 338) p. 21

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„I know that I am honest and sincere in my desire to do well; but the question is whether I know enough to accomplish what I desire.“

— Grover Cleveland 22nd and 24th president of the United States 1837 - 1908
Context: I feel as if it were time for me to write to someone who will believe what I write. I have been for some time in the atmosphere of certain success, so that I have been sure that I should assume the duties of the high office for which I have been named. I have tried hard, in the light of this fact, to appreciate properly the responsibilities that will rest upon me, and they are much, too much underestimated. But the thought that has troubled me is, can I well perform my duties, and in such a manner as to do some good to the people of the State? I know there is room for it, and I know that I am honest and sincere in my desire to do well; but the question is whether I know enough to accomplish what I desire. The social life which seems to await me has also been a subject of much anxious thought. I have a notion that I can regulate that very much as I desire; and, if I can, I shall spend very little time in the purely ornamental part of the office. In point of fact, I will tell you, first of all others, the policy I intend to adopt, and that is, to make the matter a business engagement between the people of the State and myself, in which the obligation on my side is to perform the duties assigned me with an eye single to the interest of my employers. I shall have no idea of re-election, or any higher political preferment in my head, but be very thankful and happy I can serve one term as the people's Governor. Letter to his brother Rev. William N. Cleveland (7 November 1882); published in The Writings and Speeches of Grover Cleveland (1892), p. 534.

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„I have ever loved to repose myself, whether sitting or lying, with my heels as high or higher than my head.“

— Michel De Montaigne (1533-1592) French-Occitan author, humanistic philosopher, statesman 1533 - 1592
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„"I would rather err with the majority than in my own way." So thought St Augustine. I am of the reverse opinion.“

— Karlheinz Deschner German writer and activist 1924 - 2014
deschner.info http://www.deschner.info/de/person/zitate.htm

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