One of the fundamental reasons why so many doctors become cynical and disillusioned is precisely because, when the abstract idealism has worn thin, they are uncertain about the value of the actual lives of the patients they are treating. This is not because they are callous or personally inhuman: it is because they live in and accept a society which is incapable of knowing what a human life is worth.
One of the grotesqueries of present-day American life is the amount of reasoning that goes into displaying the wisdom secreted in bad movies while proving that modern art is meaningless. They have put into practice the notion that a bad art work cleverly interpreted according to some obscure Method is more rewarding than a masterpiece wrapped in silence.
One of the most appalling comments on our present way of life is that half of all the beds in our hospitals are reserved for patients with nervous and mental troubles, patients who have collapsed under the crushing burden of accumulated yesterdays and fearful tomorrows. Yet a vast majority of those people would be walking the streets today, leading happy, useful lives, if they had only heeded the words of Jesus: "Have no anxiety about the morrow"; or the words of Sir William Osler; "Live in day-tight compartments.
One of the most tragicomic things in life is that when a man makes an imaginary thing – such as a religion – as his own flag and carries it all his life and even dies for it! An intelligent man has only one flag: Flag of reason and science!
One should guard against preaching to young people success in the customary form as the main aim in life. The most important motive for work in school and in life is pleasure in work, pleasure in its result, and the knowledge of the value of the result to the community.
One thing is clear to me. You cant know everything youd like to know. You cant do everything youd like to do. You cant read everything youd like to read. You must hold onto some things and let go of others. Learning to make that choice is one of the big lessons of this life.