The most beautiful quotes on Experience

I found these while browsing some sites on experiential education. These are too nice not to post. Let me start with my favorite, even if it’s from Mao. Pick your favorite and or post your own. 🙂

If you want knowledge, you must take part in the practice of changing reality. If you want to know the taste of a pear, you must change the pear by eating it yourself.

– Mao Zedong, On Practice, July, 1937

Experience is not what happens to a man; it is what a man does with what happens to him.

– Aldous Huxley, Texts & Pretexts: Introduction

We go through life expecting to be tasted while we are being swallowed.

– Elizabeth Bebesco, Haven: ‘Aphorisms’

Life should serve up its experiences in a series of courses.

– William Golding, Close Quarters, 17

Experience isn’t interesting till it begins to repeat itself – in fact, till it does that, it hardly is experience.

– Elizabeth Bowen, The Death of the Heart, Pt 1, Ch 1

To most men, experience is like the stern light of a ship, which illumines only the track it has passed.

– Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Table Talk, p. 434

Not all need experience, but all need the fruit of experience.

– Bishop Mandell Creighton, Life and Letters, Vol. 2

There are two things that experiences teach us: the first is that we should correct heavily; the second, that is should not be too heavily.

– Eugene Delacroix, Journal,8 March, 1860

To a great experience one thing is essential, an experiencing nature.

– Walter Bagehot, Estimates of Some Englishmen and Scotsmen: ‘Shakespeare – the Individual’

Experience only serves us to give others useless advice.

– Comtesse Diana, Maxims of Life, p. 75

Experience dulls the edge of all our dogmas.

– Gilbert Murray (attrib.)

One can learn from experience, but one cannot be taught by it.

– Adam Phillips, On Kissing, Tickling and Being Bored

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains.
The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.

– William A. Ward

A moment’s insight is sometimes worth a life’s experience.

– Oliver Wendell Holmes, The Professor at the Breakfast Table, Ch. 10

We can have in life but one great experience at best,
and the secret of life is to reproduce that experience as often as possible.

– Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, Ch. 17

The things we have to learn before we do them, we learn by doing them.

– Aristotle

The knowledge of the world is only to be acquired in the world, and not in a closet.

– Lord Philip Dormer Stanhope Chesterfield



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