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There is a tradition of opposition between adherents of induction and of deduction. In my view it would be just as sensible for the two ends of a worm to quarrel.
—  Alfred North Whitehead
Periods of tranquility are seldom prolific of creative achievement. Mankind has to be stirred up.
—  Alfred North Whitehead
Fundamental progress has to do with the reinterpretation of basic ideas.
—  Alfred North Whitehead
In ancient times cats were worshipped as gods, they have never forgotten this.
—  Alfred North Whitehead
By relieving the brain of all unnecessary work, a good notation sets it free to concentrate on more advanced problems, and, in effect, increases the mental power of the race.
—  Alfred North Whitehead
It is more important that a proposition be interesting than that it be true. This statement is almost a tautology. For the energy of operation of a proposition in an occasion of experience is its interest and is its importance. But of course a true proposition is more apt to be interesting than a false one.
—  Alfred North Whitehead
Algebra is the intellectual instrument which has been created for rendering clear the quantitative aspects of the world.
—  Alfred North Whitehead
In the study of ideas, it is necessary to remember that insistence on hard-headed clarity issues from sentimental feeling, as it were a mist, cloaking the perplexities of fact. Insistence on clarity at all costs is based on sheer superstition as to the mode in which human intelligence functions. Our reasonings grasp at straws for premises and float on gossamers for deductions.
—  Alfred North Whitehead
Civilization advances by extending the number of important operations that we can perform without thinking about them.
—  Alfred North Whitehead
No Roman ever died in contemplation over a geometrical diagram. A reference to the death of Archimedes.
—  Alfred North Whitehead

       

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