If all men knew what others say of them, there would not be four friends in the world.
The power of a man's virtue should not be measured by his special efforts, but by his ordinary doing
Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction.
How can people hold these opinions? What joy can we find in the expectation of nothing but hopeless misery? What reason for boasting that we are in impenetrable darkness? And how can it happen that the following argument occurs to a reasonable man?
Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness.
Men blaspheme what they do not know.
The greater intellect one has, the more originality one finds in men. Ordinary persons find no difference between men.
Men despise religion. They hate it and are afraid it may be true.
All men's miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone.
Two things control men's nature, instinct and experience.
Make religion attractive, make good men wish it were true, and then show that it is. Worthy of reverence because it really understands human nature. Attractive because it promises true good.
It is a deplorable thing to see all men deliberating on means alone, and not on the end.
Men spend their time chasing a ball or a hare; it is the very sport of kings.
As men are not able to fight against death, misery, ignorance, they have taken it into their heads, in order to be happy, not to think of them at all.
Man loves malice, but not against one-eyed men nor the unfortunate, but against the fortunate and proud.