Truth is not virtue, but the lack of vices.
The most common and the most widely used deceit is the wish to deceive not other people, but yourself. And this kind of life is the most harmful.
— A Calendar of Wisdom: Daily Thoughts to Nourish the Soul, Written and Selected from the World’s Sacred Texts by Leo Tolstoy (translated by Peter Sekirin)
The more I resist Him and try to live on my own, the more I become dominated by my own heredity and upbringing and surroundings and natural desires. In fact what I so proudly call ‘Myself’ becomes merely the meeting place for trains of events which I never started and which I cannot stop. What I call ‘My wishes’ become merely the desires thrown up by my physical organism or pumped into me by other men’s thoughts or even suggested to me by devils. Eggs and alcohol and a good night’s sleep will be the real origins of what I flatter myself by regarding as my own highly personal and discriminating decision to make love to the girl opposite to me in the railway carriage. Propaganda will be the real origin of what I regard as my own personal political ideas. I am not, in my natural state, nearly so much of a person as I like to believe: most of what I call ‘me’ can be very easily explained. It is when I turn to Christ, when I give myself up to His Personality, that I first begin to have a real personality of my own.
—from Mere Christianity
— A Year with C.S. Lewis: Daily Readings from His Classic Works by C.S. Lewis
Playwright George Bernard Shaw asserted, “A life spent in making mistakes is not only more honorable but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.”
If you can take action and keep making mistakes, you gain experience. (That’s why President Theodore Roosevelt said, “He who makes no mistakes makes no progress.”)