We shall prosper as we learn to do the common things of life in an uncommon way. Let down your buckets where you are.
It means a great deal, I think, to start off on a foundation which one has made for oneself.
My whole life has largely been one of surprises.
The individual who can do something that the world wants done will, in the end, make his way regardless of his race.
I shall never permit myself to stoop so low as to hate any man.
Mere connection with what is known as a superior race will not permanently carry an individual forward unless the individual has worth.
Let our opportunities overshadow our grievances.
The negro has within him immense power for self-uplifting, but for years it will be necessary to guide and stimulate him.
From some things that I have said one may get the idea that some of the slaves did not want freedom. This is not true. I have never seen one who did not want to be free, or one who would return to slavery.
The circumstances that surround a man's life are not important. How that man responds to those circumstances IS IMPORTANT. His response is the ultimate determining factor between success and failure.
To those of my race who depend on bettering their condition in a foreign land or who underestimate the importance of cultivating friendly relations with the Southern white man, who is their next-door neighbor, I would say 'Cast down your bucket where you are.'
The Negro is not the man farthest down. The condition of the coloured farmer in the most backward parts of the Southern States of America, even where he has the least education and the least encouragement, is incomparably better than the condition and opportunities of the agricultural population in Sicily.
The longer I live and the more I study the question, the more I am convinced that it is not so much the problem of what you will do with Negro, as what the Negro will do with you and your 'civilization'.
I let no man drag me down so low as to make me hate him.
I believe that my race will succeed in proportion as it learns to do a common thing in an uncommon manner; learns to do a thing so thoroughly that no one can improve upon what it has done; learns to make its services of indispensable value.
Those who have accomplished the greatest results are those… who never grow excited or lose self-control, but are always calm, self-possessed, patient and polite.
Educated men and women, especially those who are in college, very often get the idea that religion is fit only for the common people. No young man or woman can make a greater error than this...
The time will come when the Negro in the South will be accorded all the political rights which his ability, character, and material possessions entitle him to.
You must understand the troubles of that man farthest down before you can help him.
We do not want the men of another color for our brothers-in-law, but we do want them for our brothers.
A race, like an individual, lifts itself up by lifting others up.
An ounce of application is worth a ton of abstraction.
Each one should remember there is a chance for him.
No race that has anything to contribute to the markets of the world is long in any degree ostracized.
I believe that one always does himself and his audience an injustice when he speaks merely for the sake of speaking. I do not believe that one should speak unless, deep down in his heart, he feels convinced that he has a message to deliver.
The actual sight of a first-class house that a Negro has built is ten times more potent than pages of discussion about a house that he ought to build, or perhaps could build.
I think I have learned that the best way to lift one's self up is to help someone else.
Too often the educational value of doing well what is done, however little, is overlooked. One thing well done prepares the mind to do the next thing better. Not how much, but how well, should be the motto. One problem thoroughly understood is of more value than a score poorly mastered.
The happiest people are those who do the most for others. The most miserable are those who do the least.
Don't ever let them pull you down so low as to hate them.
I think I have learned, in some degree at least, to disregard the old maxim "Do not get others to do what you can do yourself." My motto on the other hand is; "Do not do that which others can do as well".
The highest test of the civilization of any race is in its willingness to extend a helping hand to the less fortunate.
We must reinforce argument with results.
No race can prosper till it learns that there is as much dignity in tilling a field as in writing a poem.
Lay hold of something that will help you, and then use it to help somebody else.
A sure way for one to lift himself up is by helping to lift someone else.
No greater injury can be done to any youth than to let him feel that because he belongs to this or that race he will be advanced in life regardless of his own merits or efforts.
Great men cultivate love and only little men cherish a spirit of hatred; assistance given to the weak makes the one who gives it strong; oppression of the unfortunate makes one weak.
Living is the art of loving. Loving is the art of caring. Caring is the art of sharing. Sharing is the art of living. If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.
At the bottom of education, at the bottom of politics, even at the bottom of religion, there must be for our race economic independence.