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Annie Besant

  • 'God' is always the equivalent of 'I do not know.'

    • Annie Besant,
    • "The Gospel of Atheism," My Path to Atheism ()
  • Celibacy is not natural to men or to women; all bodily needs require their legitimate satisfaction, and celibacy is a disregard of natural law.

  • Refusal to believe unless proof is given is a rational position, denial of all outside our own limited experience is absurd.

  • Everything which is of strife makes the vision of the truth more difficult; everything which tends to controversy makes the grasping of the truth harder. The spirit of man should be like a lake unruffled by wind or storm. Under such conditions a lake will reflect perfectly the mountains which are around it and the sky above it. With an unruffled surface it will give a perfect reflection of these. If the wind sweeps over it or the storm ruffles it, its reflections are disturbed; they are not clear. The images will be seen, but not clearly. And so it is with the division of light and the human spirit. If the spirit is ruffled, then the Divine Image cannot mirror itself thereon.

    • Annie Besant,
    • in The Metaphysical Magazine ()
  • A myth is far truer than a history, for a history only gives a story of the shadows, whereas a myth gives a story of the substances that cast the shadows.

  • When a man, a woman, see their little daily tasks as integral portions of the one great work, they are no longer drudges but co-workers with God.

  • There is no birthright in the white skin that it shall say that wherever it goes, to any nation, amongst any people, there the people of the country shall give way before it, and those to whom the land belongs shall bow down and become its servants.

  • Morality is the Science of harmonious relations between intelligent beings.

  • The wanting of advice is the sign that the Spirit in you has not yet spoken with the compelling voice that you ought to obey.

  • No circumstances can ever make or mar the unfolding of the spiritual life. Spirituality does not depend upon the environment; it depends upon one's attitude towards life.

    • Annie Besant,
    • "The Spiritual Life in the World," The Spiritual Life ()
  • Never forget that life can only be nobly inspired and rightly lived if you take it bravely and gallantly, as a splendid adventure in which you are setting out into an unknown country, to meet many a joy, to find many a comrade, to win and lose many a battle.

    • Annie Besant,
    • in Theosophist Magazine ()
  • Death has been painted as a skeleton grasping a scythe, a grinning skull, a threatening figure with terrible face and uplifted dart, a bony scarecrow shaking an hour-glass — all that could alarm and repel has been gathered round this rightly-named King of Terrors.

Annie Besant, English theosophist, writer

(1847 - 1933)

Full name: Annie Wood Besant