Some people compress wit, word skills and insights into sparkling jewels of wisdom. One was G. K. Chesterton, an English Catholic writer whose life straddled the 19th and 20th centuries -- and influenced other writers like C. S. Lewis.
The Minneapolis-based American Chesterton Society has done a great job of gathering his quotes and other works. A sampling:
- "The reformer is always right about what is wrong. He is generally wrong about what is right."
- "The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried."
- "Progress is Providence without God. That is, it is a theory that everything has always perpetually gone right by accident."
- "There are those who hate Christianity and call their hatred an all-embracing love for all religions."
- "The aim of good prose words is to mean what they say. The aim of good poetical words is to mean what they do not say."
There's more to Chesterton than quips, of course. He wrote a hundred books and hundreds of poems. He also wrote plays, novels, short stories and newspaper columns. The Chesterton Society offers some of these, plus "nuggets," or digests, of some of his beliefs. It also publishes Gilbert magazine, with some thought-provoking sample articles by and about him.