Curtis Dahlgren
November 30, 2007
How to write a column without saying a word (part I)
By Curtis Dahlgren

"Books will speak plain when counselors blanche."

THERE BE [SOME WHO] CAN PACK THE CARDS AND YET CANNOT PLAY WELL; so there are some that are good in canvasses and factions, that are otherwise weak men.

Every rod and staff of empire is truly crooked at the top.

Universities incline wits to sophistry and affectation.

For what a man had [wished to] be true he more readily believes.

There is more of the fool in human nature than of the wise.

It is a strange desire to seek power and to lose liberty.

Laws are like cobwebs; where the small flies are caught, and the great break through.

Hope is a good breakfast, but a bad supper.

Critics are like brushers of noblemen's clothes.

Nothing doth more hurt in a state than when the cunning men pass for wise.

He said it that knew it best.

Intermingle earnest with jest.

Envy never takes a holiday.

A wise man will make more opportunities than he finds.

Fortunes . . come tumbling into some men's laps.

In the youth of a state arms do flourish; in the middle age of a state, learning; and then both of them for a time; in the declining age of a state, mechanical arts and merchandise.

Suspicions amongst thoughts are like bats amongst birds, they ever fly at twilight.

The inquiry of truth, which is the love-making, or wooing of it, the knowledge of truth, which is the presence of it, and the belief of truth, which is the enjoying of it, is the sovereign good of human nature.

What is truth? said jesting Pilate; and would not stay for an answer.

A man that studieth revenge keeps his own wounds green.

It were better to have no opinion of God at all than such an opinion as is unworthy of Him; for the one is unbelief, the other is contumely [an ostentatious display of contempt].

There is nothing makes a man suspect much, more than to know little.

There is a superstition in avoiding superstition.

They that deny God destroy men's nobility.

A little philosophy inclineth men's mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men's minds about to religion.

God never wrought miracle to convince atheism, because His ordinary works convince it.

There was never a miracle wrought by God to convert an atheist, because the light of nature might have led him to confess a God.

I had rather believe all the fables in the legend, and the Talmud, and the Alcoran, than that this [universe] is without a mind.

Silence is the virtue of fools.

All colours will agree in the dark.

It is true greatness to have in one the frailty of a man, and the security of a God.

The pencil of the Holy [Spirit] hath laboured more in describing the afflictions of Job than the felicities of Solomon.

Prosperity is the blessing of the Old Testament, adversity is the blessing of the New.

Prosperity doth best discover vice, but adversity doth best discover virtue.

Riches are a good handmaid, but the worst mistress.

The knowledge of man is as the waters, some descended from above, and some springing from beneath; the one informed by the light of nature, the other inspired by divine revelation.

If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts; but if he will be content to begin with doubts, he shall end in certainties.

- Francis Bacon (Baron Verulam, Viscount St. Albans, 1561-1626)

[another home-schooled college dropout whose life and works nonetheless earned him more than 16 pages in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th edition which described him as (along with Descartes) 'the great leader in the reformation of modern science and philosophy' . . .

"The time was ripe for a great change; scholasticism, long decaying, had begun to fall; the authority not only of school doctrines but of the church had been discarded; while here and there [out of the 'mainstream'] a few devoted experimenters were turning with fresh zeal to the unwhithered face of nature. The fruitful thoughts which lay under and gave rise to these scattered efforts of the human mind, were gathered up into unity, and reduced to system in the new philosophy of Bacon.']

"I knew one that when he wrote a letter he would put that which was most material in the postscript, as if it had been a bymatter."

"It has been well said 'the arch-flatterer with whom all the petty flatterers have [communion] with is a man's self.'"

"There is little friendship in the world, and least of all between equals."

"Reading makes a full man . . . writing an exact man."

P.S. [oops] I honestly intended to write this column without saying a word of my OWN, but:

As Nixon used to say, I just want to say this about that:

"The time is ripe" for a Baconian renewal, a revival, a return to the hearts of our Fathers, our Founding Fathers (both national and spiritual). It is high time for a restitution of all things. The alternatives aren't pretty.

Bacon said, "It is as natural to die as to be born; and to a little infant, perhaps, the one is as painful as the other."

Especially in the age of partial-birth abortions, eh?

Is today's society
beyond revival, beyond redemption? I don't know, but Bacon said:

"The nobelist works and foundations have proceeded from childless men, [who] have sought to express the images of their minds where those of their bodies have failed."

I'm sure he never envisioned a time when some men would be childless not because their bodies failed, but because our "noble judges" and "leaders" failed them and their offspring.

What this world needs now is not more so-called "love" but a return to the "modern" science of Bacon as opposed to the post-modern philosophies of our academies (who "incline wits to sophistry and affectation")!


© Curtis Dahlgren

Comments feature added August 14, 2011

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Curtis Dahlgren

Curtis Dahlgren is semi-retired in the frozen tundra of Michigan's U.P., and is the author of "Massey-Harris 101." His career has had some rough similarities to one of his favorite writers, Ferrar Fenton... (more)


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