„There is nothing so easy but that it becomes difficult when you do it reluctantly.“

—  Pitágoras, Terence, in Heauton Timoroumenos [The Self-Tormentor]
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-585 - -500 a.C.

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„Falsehood is so easy, truth so difficult.“

—  George Eliot English novelist, journalist and translator 1819 - 1880
Context: These fellow-mortals, every one, must be accepted as they are: you can neither straighten their noses, nor brighten their wit, nor rectify their dispositions; and it is these people — amongst whom your life is passed — that it is needful you should tolerate, pity, and love: it is these more or less ugly, stupid, inconsistent people whose movements of goodness you should be able to admire — for whom you should cherish all possible hopes, all possible patience. And I would not, even if I had the choice, be the clever novelist who could create a world so much better than this, in which we get up in the morning to do our daily work, that you would be likely to turn a harder, colder eye on the dusty streets and the common green fields — on the real breathing men and women, who can be chilled by your indifference or injured by your prejudice; who can be cheered and helped onward by your fellow-feeling, your forbearance, your outspoken, brave justice. So I am content to tell my simple story, without trying to make things seem better than they were; dreading nothing, indeed, but falsity, which, in spite of one's best efforts, there is reason to dread. Falsehood is so easy, truth so difficult. The pencil is conscious of a delightful facility in drawing a griffin — the longer the claws, and the larger the wings, the better; but that marvellous facility which we mistook for genius is apt to forsake us when we want to draw a real unexaggerated lion. Examine your words well, and you will find that even when you have no motive to be false, it is a very hard thing to say the exact truth, even about your own immediate feelings — much harder than to say something fine about them which is not the exact truth.

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Barack Obama photo

„It is easy to get to a higher number when you are not asking anything difficult from yourself.“

—  Barack Obama 44th President of the United States of America 1961
In response to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), who, on behalf of the Republican party, wanted steeper cuts, while opposing tax rises (also termed as revenue enhancements) in a meeting about the U.S. debt ceiling on July 13, 2011. According to an unidentified source, as reported by blogger Sam Stien, "Obama Warns Cantor 'Don't Call My Bluff' As Debt Talks Stall," http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/13/obama-debt-ceiling-meeting_n_897834.html The Huffington Post, 14 July 2011 <!-- "The president reportedly responded" isn't even an attribution, it's a rumor -->

Bruce Lee photo

„Do not pray for an easy life, pray for the strength to endure a difficult one“

—  Bruce Lee Hong Kong-American actor, martial artist, philosopher and filmmaker 1940 - 1973