The Pine Tree Book of Quotations

Over the seven years the author directed Pine Tree Camp, the Junior Leader Training Conference of the Viking Council in Minneapolis, Minnesota. During this time he adapted his own collection of quotations and presented them as a series of posters for the interest of the staff and participants. These were displayed in the main lodge where cracker barrels and troop indoor activities were held during the Conference. Each year the original collection was expanded as the author came across new, unusual, appropriate and interesting quotations. By 1995, the collection exceeded 200 quotations. These were collected to create The Pine Tree Book of Quotations which over the years the author has shared with many Scouting friends. It is presented here for the enjoyment and interest of the reader.

The collection may seem eclectic, or perhaps just unusual. It includes quotations from philosophy, literature, drama, the comic and the tragic. They range from Baden-Powell to Captain Kirk, from the Ancient Egyptian philosopher Amenenope to Albert Einstein. They are the product of the authors interests and are offered here without apology.

In the years following the original “Book of Quotations,” the author has continued to collect quotations that met his eclectic criteria and particular personality. These have been appended following the end of Part Five of the original edition. Some have been added to offer additional insight into the thinking and philosophy behind the themes, skills and tools presented in the NYLT program at Grey Wolf.

Part One

"The most worth-while thing is to try to put happiness into the lives of others."

Sir Robert Baden-Powell,
Age 80. From his last letters, September, 1940.

"I have gone home."

The Dean and Chapter of Westminster Abbey offered a place for Baden-Powell, between the graves of the Unknown Warrior and David Livingstone. After careful consideration, the family declined this great honour as not conforming to B-P’s expressed wishes. He was buried in the Africa he loved with full military honours accorded to his rank of Lieutenant-General and with a guard of Boy Scouts European, African and Asian. His grave in the tiny cemetery of Nyeri, Kenya, is marked by a simple stone that carries his name and the Boy Scout trail sign for "I have gone home."

"Put your trust in God, and keep your powder dry."

Oliver Cromwell,
English Statesman and General, Leading Puritan, Lord Protector of England
Before the Battle of Naseby, June, 1645

"Our swords are in God’s hands, And our faith is in the Lord. Charge! "

Oliver Cromwell,
English Statesman and General,Leading Puritan, Lord Protector of England.
During the Battle of Naseby, June, 1645.

"Be cheerful while you are alive."

The Maxims of Ptah-hotep,
Ancient Egyptian Philosopher (c. 2350 b.c)

"Whoso neglects learning in his youth,
Loses the past and is dead to the future."

Classical Greek Dramatist (c. 485 – 406 b.c)

"It is the spirit of the men who follow
and of the man who leads that gains victory."

George S. Patton, September, 1933

"Learning without thought is labor lost;
Thought without learning is perilous."

Confucius (551 – 479 b.c.)
Ancient Chinese Philosopher

"Leadership and Learning are indispensable to each other."

John F. Kennedy
Remarks prepared for a speech in Dallas, Texas, November 22, 1963

"We secure our friends not by accepting favors but by doing them."

Ancient Greek Historian (c. 460 – 400 b. c.)
The History of the Peloponnesian Wars

"For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them."

Ancient Greek Philosopher (384 – 322 b.c.),
Tutor of Alexander the Great, and Author of Nichomichaen Ethics

"Quintili Vare, Legiones redde!"
"Quintilius Varus, Give me back my legions!"

Augustus Caesar,
Roman Emperor (63 b.c. – 14 a.d.)
Nephew of Julius Caesar and founder of the Roman Empire.
(Attributed by Robert Graves in I, Claudius.

The Roman General Quintilius Varus lost three legions and their eagles in the Battle of the Teutoberger Wald against the German tribes. It was the first defeat of the Romans in a campaign against a "barbarian" tribe.

"All excellent things are as difficult as they are rare."

Baruch Spinoza,
Dutch Philosopher (1632 – 1677)

"You are young and have the world before you; stoop as you go through it, and you will miss many hard bumps."

Cotton Mather (1663 – 1728)
Puritan Divine, Advice to Benjamin Franklin
upon approaching a low hanging beam in his parsonage.

"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat."

Theodore Roosevelt, 1858 – 1919. President of the United States, Founding Member of the National Council, Boy Scouts of America

"Education is . . . hanging around until you’ve caught on."

Robert Frost, American Poet (1874 – 1963)

"I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience. I know no way of judging of the future but by the past."

Patrick Henry, American Patriot (1736 – 1799)

"When angry count ten before you speak; If very angry, an hundred."

Thomas Jefferson (1743 – 1826),
Third President of the United States,
Author of the Declaration of Independence,
Founder of the University of Virginia

"I hate quotations. Tell me what you know."

Ralph Waldo Emerson,
19th Century American Philosopher

"Last summer I carried a cake of soap and a towel in my knapsack through the North Woods for a seven week’s tour, and never used either a single time."

George Washington Sears, known as "Nessmuk," commenting on how to contend with mosquitoes and black flies. From the1883 edition of his classic work, Camping and Woodcraft.

"Trust should be the basis for all our moral training."

Sir Robert Baden-Powell,

"The uniform makes for brotherhood, since when universally adopted it covers up all differences of class and country."

Sir Robert Baden-Powell

"There is no teaching to compare with example."

Sir Robert Baden-Powell

"An individual step in character training is to put responsibility on the individual."

Sir Robert Baden-Powell

"Scouts of the World – Brothers Together"

Sir Robert Baden-Powell

"The patrol system leads each boy to see that he has some individual responsibility for the good of his patrol."

Sir Robert Baden-Powell

"Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear not absence of fear."

Mark Twain
19th Century American Author.
Author of Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer

"There is no greatness where there is not simplicity, goodness, and truth"

Leo Tolstoy
19th Century Russian Author.
Author of the great classic novel, War and Peace

"He that respects himself is safe from others; he wears a coat of mail that none can pierce."

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow,
19th Century American Poet.
Author of The Song Of Hiawatha

"All paths lead to the same goal: to convey what we are."

Pablo Neruda
20th Century Latin American Poet
Winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature

"God, give us the serenity to accept what cannot be changed, the courage to change what should be changed, and the wisdom to distinguish one from the other."

Reinhold Niebuhr
20th Century German Theologian

The wise man does not speak before him that is greater than he in wisdom;
He does not break into his fellows speech;
He is not in a rush to reply;
He asks what is relevant and replies to the point;
He speaks of first things first and of last things last;
Of what he has not heard he says, "I have not heard,"
And he acknowledges what is true.
And the opposites apply to the clod.

From "The Ethics of the Fathers," a section of the Babylonian Talmud.
A collection of Jewish law and tradition, compiled between 400 B.C. and 400 A.D.
Published in Babylon in the 5th Century A.D.

"It takes two to speak the truth one to speak and another to hear."

Henry David Thoreau
19th Century American Philosopher.
Author of Walden

"Unity is plural and, at a minimum, is two."

R. Buckminster Fuller
20th Century Scientist, Inventor, Philosopher.
Designer of the first Geodesic Dome

"Live while you can; it’s a mistake not to.
It doesn’t so much matter what you do in particular, so long as you have had your life.
If you haven’t had that, what have you had."

William James
19th Century American Philosopher

"To know and not to use is not yet to know"

Ancient Buddhist Saying

"A peasant will stand on the top of a hill for a very long time with his mouth open,
before a roast duck will fly in."

Traditional Chinese Saying

"When a cowboy’s too old to set a bad example, he hands out good advice."

From Ken Alstad, Savvy Sayin’s, published by the
Old West Almanac, Tucson, Arizona

"An old timer is a man who’s had a lot of interesting experiences some of them true"

From Ken Alstad, Savvy Sayin’s, published by the
Old West Almanac, Tucson, Arizona

"I never blame myself when I’m not hitting, I just blame the bat and if it keeps up, I change bats. After all, if I know it isn’t my fault that I’m not hitting, how can I get mad at myself."

Yogi Berra,
Former Catcher and Manager,
New York Yankees

"Computers are useless.
They can only give you answers."

Pablo Picasso,
Extraordinary 20th Century Modern Artist

"Man’s reach should exceed his grasp, else what’s a heaven for."

Robert Browning,
19th Century British Romantic Poet
From the poem, "Andrea del Sarto" (1855)

"In the long run men hit only what they aim at ."

Henry David Thoreau,
19th Century American Philosopher
From, On Walden Pond

"If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours."

Henry David Thoreau,
19th Century American Philosopher
From, On Walden Pond

"It is not enough to have a good mind. The main thing is to use it well."

Rene Descartes
French Mathematician & Philosopher (1596-1650)
Original developer of the "Scientific Method" of inquiry.
From his Discourse on Method

"Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can."

from "John Wesley’s Rule"
John Wesley, English Churchman, Evangelist and
Founder of the Methodist Church (1703 – 1791)

In the field not one
fourleaf clover:
which of the three’s to blame?

From "Sixteen Haiku"
George Sefaris, Greek Poet
1983 Nobel Laureate for Poetry


The Pine Tree Book of Quotations (2011)

  Part One
  Part Two
  Part Three
  Part Four
  Part Five

Appendix (Quotations added 1997-2010)

Return to the Pine Tree Web Home Page: A Collection of the Authors Links

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Please write to:
Lewis P. Orans

Copyright © Lewis P. Orans, 2011
Last Modified: 12:27 PM on January 2, 2011