„Everything that is past is either a learning experience to grow on, a beautiful memory to reflect on, or a motivating factor to act upon.“

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John Dewey photo

„We do not learn from experience… we learn from reflecting on experience.“

—  John Dewey American philosopher, psychologist, and educational reformer 1859 - 1952

N. R. Narayana Murthy photo
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Helen Keller photo
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Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel photo

„What experience and history teach is this — that nations and governments have never learned anything from history, or acted upon any lessons they might have drawn from it.“

—  Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel German philosopher 1770 - 1831
Introduction, as translated by H. B. Nisbet (1975) Variant translation: What experience and history teach is this — that people and governments never have learned anything from history, or acted on principles deduced from it. Pragmatical (didactic) reflections, though in their nature decidedly abstract, are truly and indefeasibly of the Present, and quicken the annals of the dead Past with the life of to-day. Whether, indeed, such reflections are truly interesting and enlivening, depends on the writer's own spirit. Moral reflections must here be specially noticed, the moral teaching expected from history; which latter has not unfrequently been treated with a direct view to the former. It may be allowed that examples of virtue elevate the soul, and are applicable in the moral instruction of children for impressing excellence upon their minds. But the destinies of peoples and states, their interests, relations, and the complicated tissue of their affairs, present quite another field. Rulers, Statesmen, Nations, are wont to be emphatically commended to the teaching which experience offers in history. But what experience and history teach is this, that peoples and governments never have learned anything from history, or acted on principles deduced from it. Each period is involved in such peculiar circumstances, exhibits a condition of things so strictly idiosyncratic, that its conduct must be regulated by considerations connected with itself, and itself alone. Amid the pressure of great events, a general principle gives no help. It is useless to revert to similar circumstances in the Past. The pallid shades of memory struggle in vain with the life and freedom of the Present. Lectures on the History of History Vol 1 p. 6 John Sibree translation (1857), 1914

Honoré de Balzac photo

„A mother’s happiness is like a beacon, lighting up the future but reflected also on the past in the guise of fond memories.“

—  Honoré de Balzac French writer 1799 - 1850
La joie d’une mère est une lumière qui jaillit jusque sur l’avenir et le lui éclaire, mais qui se reflète sur le passé pour lui donner le charme des souvenirs. Part I, ch. XXXI.

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Albert Einstein photo

„Learning is experience. Everything else is just information.“

—  Albert Einstein German-born physicist and founder of the theory of relativity 1879 - 1955

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Cass Elliot photo

„Everything I've learned in life I've learned either by doing it or watching the changes other people go through.“

—  Cass Elliot American singer 1941 - 1974
Context: Everything I've learned in life I've learned either by doing it or watching the changes other people go through. And when you're famous, you don't get to meet people — because they want you to like them when they present themselves to you, present the best sides of themselves, and you don't see the real people. Which is why I don't really go anywhere. And when I do, I put on my silly face and do what they expect me to do. Actually, I never do what they expect me to do. It's the only way I could go on doing what I have to do. I do whatever I… you know, I didn't even comb my hair today. I didn't know we were taking pictures but when I found out, it didn't change my mind any.

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