"Truth never envelops itself in mystery,
and the mystery in which it is at any time enveloped
is the work of its antagonist, and never of itself."
Thomas Paine
(1737-1809) US Founding father, pamphleteer, author
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- gdg, windsor, on      
The prophet Nehemiah says "the heart and mind of man is deceitful above all things". Look at how those who claim to be Bible readers and believers do to the fourth commandment of the self same book to know that Nehemiah is correct. Truth gets morphed by a phenomenon called cutural syncretism.
 -- Waffler, Smith, Arkansas     
    (-: Waffler, a deceitful syncretism would be to try and merge democracy into a nation of free individual sovereigns; or, try to homogonize an intangible inherently sovereign ethos into a nation of individual freedom and liberty - truth is there an obscured mystery by its antagonists ;-)
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    Well Tom old chap, that's really fundamental. I love this by Blake: "A truth that's told with bad intent beats all the lies you can invent." As this was said with good intent I give it five.
     -- RobertSRQ     
  • 1
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA      
     -- warren, olathe      
    Leave it to Waffler to quote a myth that contradicts the quote in order to prove Paine correct! I think the so-called prophet Nehemiah's assertion is just a bunch of bunk. It is the classic tool of religion to convince us all that we are worthless and 'deceitful,' that our minds are bad, our hearts evil -- and what is the solution? Cow-towing to whatever church or god they are trying to promote. I suppose love and intelligence are therefore the real 'myths,' eh? Talk about antoginism!
     -- E Archer, NYC     
    Archer even if you accept the bible as a book written by men Nehemiah seems to be on to something. The myths of the bible about the six day creation and the seventh day rest are about as clear a teaching as the bible has but even those who espouse the bible do not follow these teachings. It is a paramount example of man's penchant to "evelope truth" in whatever manner suits his purpose. To know when we are being deceitful or even deceiving ourselves that is a goal for which to strive.
     -- Waffler, Smith, Arkansas     
    Quoting Nehemiah carries no more, or no less value then quoting Paine. Religion should not be feared as long as it is kept in its proper place. When ever religion says you must believe or you will be burned at the stake, or your head will be chopped off, it must be viewed for the tyrant the it has become, and IT MUST BE STOPPED. I cannot stress this enough. Religion is beautiful, if the beauty of it is put into practice. If it is perverted into evilness, there is nothing more dangerous, or ugly. It must be stopped with the urgence of a house fire.
     -- Ken, Milford Pa     
    I agree wholeheartedly, Ken from Milford. Very well put. Everything man touches, including religion, is a two edged sword and can be perverted to evil use. Religion is in large part responsible for civilization. It has also been used to justify the bloodiest wars.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
    I think the two Ken's have nailed it. Thanks.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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