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Musings on Integrity

Categories: Musings Psychology

Quotes and poetry on the importance of integrity.
Let’s start with a definition (taken from the Noah Webster’s Dictionary, 1828):

INTEGRITY, n. [L. integritas, from integer.]
1. Wholeness; entireness; unbroken state.
2. The entire, unimpaired state of any thing, particularly of the mind; moral soundness or purity; incorruptness; uprightness; honesty. Integrity comprehends the whole moral character, but has a special reference to uprightness in mutual dealings, transfers of property, and agencies of others.
3. Purity; genuine, unadulterated, unimpaired state; as the integrity of language.

Part 1

“He who walks purely walks securely,
but he who walks in crooked ways will be found out.”
— Proverbs 10:9
“Better to be poor and live an honest life
than be crooked in one’s ways, though rich.”
— Proverbs 28:6

Part 2

“The integrity of the upright guides them,
but the duplicity of the treacherous destroys them.”
— Proverbs 11:3
“Better to be poor and live one’s life uprightly
than engage in crooked speech, for such a one is a fool.”
— Proverbs 19:1

Part 3

“Lying lips are an abomination to Adonai,
but those who deal faithfully are his delight.”
— Proverbs 12:22
“Someone who is trustworthy in a small matter
is also trustworthy in large ones,
and someone who is dishonest in a small matter
is also dishonest in large ones.”
— Luke 16:10

Part 4

Integrity cannot be bought,
Will not be plucked from trees;
The wise nurture this blessed gift…
but from the fool it flees.

Part 5

“If you have integrity, nothing else matters. If you don’t have integrity, nothing else matters.”
― Alan Simpson

Part 6

“If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.”
― Mark Twain

Part 7

“Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.”
― Albert Einstein

Part 8

“Waste no more time arguing about what a good man should be. Be one.”
― Marcus Aurelius

Part 9

“I prefer to be true to myself, even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, rather than to be false, and to incur my own abhorrence.”
― Frederick Douglass

Part 10

“I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live up to what light I have.”
― Abraham Lincoln

Part 11

No wind will make for humid days;
No clouds? That means no rain…
No integrity in relationships
invites a world of pain.

Part 12

“You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.”
― Abraham Lincoln

Part 13

“If it is not right do not do it; if it is not true do not say it.”
― Marcus Aurelius

Part 14

“The truly scary thing about undiscovered lies is that they have a greater capacity to diminish us than exposed ones. They erode our strength, our self-esteem, our very foundation.”
― Cheryl Hughes

Part 15

“In a room where
people unanimously maintain
a conspiracy of silence,
one word of truth
sounds like a pistol shot.”
― Czesław Miłosz

Part 16

“We can’t take any credit for our talents. It’s how we use them that counts.”
― Madeleine L’Engle

Part 17

“Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.”
― Martin Luther King, Jr.

Part 18

“Integrity is telling myself the truth. And honesty is telling the truth to other people.”
― Spencer Johnson

Part 19

“How much time he gains who does not look to see what his neighbour says or does or thinks, but only at what he does himself, to make it just and holy.”
― Marcus Aurelius

Part 20

“Somebody once said that in looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if you don’t have the first, the other two will kill you. You think about it; it’s true. If you hire somebody without [integrity], you really want them to be dumb and lazy.”
― Warren Buffett

Part 21

“When people cheat in any arena, they diminish themselves ― they threaten their own self-esteem and their relationships with others by undermining the trust they have in their ability to succeed and in their ability to be true.”
― Cheryl Hughes

Part 22

“Honesty is more than not lying. It is truth telling, truth speaking, truth living, and truth loving.”
― James E. Faust

Part 23

“I will not deny but that the best apology against false accusers is silence and sufferance, and honest deeds set against dishonest words.”
― John Milton

Part 24

“Integrity is doing what is right and truthful, and doing as you say you would do.”
― Roy T. Bennett

Part 25

“There can be no friendship without confidence, and no confidence without integrity.”
― Samuel Johnson

Part 26

“Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.”
― Samuel Johnson

Part 27

“Allow yourself to think only those thoughts that match your principles and can bear the bright light of day. Day by day, your choices, your thoughts, your actions fashion the person you become. Your integrity determines your destiny.”
― Heraclitus

Part 28

“The armour of falsehood is subtly wrought out of darkness, and hides a man not only from others, but from his own soul.”
― E. M. Forster

Part 29

“Integrity is doing the right thing, even if nobody is watching.”
― Jim Stovall

Part 30

“Whatever does not pretend at all has style enough.”
― Booth Tarkington

Part 31

“Some say if you want success surround yourself with successful people. I say if you want true and lasting success surround yourself with people of integrity.”
― Charles F. Glassman

Part 32

“Confidence in others’ honesty is no light testimony of one’s own integrity.”
― Michel de Montaigne

Part 33

“Each of us is an artist of our days; the greater our integrity and awareness, the more original and creative our time will become.”
― John O’Donohue

Part 34

“Truth at last cannot be hidden. Dissimulation is of no avail. Dissimulation is to no purpose before so great a judge. Falsehood puts on a mask. Nothing is hidden under the sun.”
― Leonardo da Vinci

Part 35

“A mode of conduct, a standard of courage, discipline, fortitude and integrity can do a great deal to make a woman beautiful.”
― Jacqueline Bisset

Part 36

“Only a man of integrity can possess the virtue of honesty, since only the faking of one’s consciousness can permit the faking of existence.”
― Ayn Rand

Part 37

“Dependability, integrity, the characteristic of never knowingly doing anything wrong, that you would never cheat anyone, that you would give everybody a fair deal. Character is a sort of an all-inclusive thing. If a man has character, everyone has confidence in him.”
― Omar Bradley

Part 38

“We should not allow our personal values to erode, even if others think we are peculiar.”
― James E. Faust

Part 39

“An authentic and genuine life grows like a sturdy tree. And like a tree, it grows slowly. Every time you make a different and better decision, it grows a little. Every time you choose to do the right thing, even when nobody would find out otherwise, it grows a little. Every time you act with compassion, relinquish your right to strike back, take a courageous stand, admit fault or accept responsibility, it grows a little.”
― Steve Goodier

Part 40

“Who you are in public is a test of your conviction; who you are in private, integrity.”
― Criss Jami

Part 41

“Govern thy life and thy thoughts as if the whole world were to see the one, and read the other.”
― Thomas Fuller

Part 42

“A best friend is the one person that doesn’t leave you worse off by their actions or yours.”
― Shannon L. Alder

Part 43

“Lead your life so you wouldn’t be ashamed to sell the family parrot to the town gossip.”
― Will Rogers

Part 44

“A virtuos woman is not moved by big names and flamboyance, but only men of profound wisdom and integrity move her.”
― Michael Bassey Johnson

Part 45

“The only ethical principle which has made science possible is that the truth shall be told all the time. If we do not penalize false statements made in error, we open up the way for false statements by intention. And a false statement of fact, made deliberately, is the most serious crime a scientist can commit.”
― Dorothy L. Sayers

Part 46

“Decide what you stand for. And then stand for it all the time.”
― Clayton Christensen

Part 47

“There comes a time in your life when you can no longer put off choosing. You have to choose one path or the other. You can live safe and be protected by people just like you, or you can stand up and be a leader for what is right. Always, remember this: People never remember the crowd; they remember the one person that had the courage to say and do what no one would do.”
― Shannon L. Alder

Part 48

“Integrity is congruence between what you know, what you profess, and what you do.”
― Nathaniel Branden

Part 49

“It has sunk him, I cannot say how much it has sunk him in my opinion. So unlike what a man should be!-None of that upright integrity, that strict adherence to truth and principle, that distain of trick and littleness, which a man should display in every transaction of his life.”
― Jane Austen

Part 50

“Listen with curiosity. Speak with honesty. Act with integrity.”
― Roy Bennett

Part 51

“Knowledge is responsibility, which is why people resist knowledge.”
― Stefan Molyneux

Part 52

“A good name is seldom regained. When character is gone, all is gone, and one of the richest jewels of life is lost.”
― J. Hawes

Part 53

“There is no such thing as a minor lapse of integrity.”
― Tom Peters

Part 54

“Healthy children will not fear life if their elders have integrity enough not to fear death.”
― Erik H. Erikson

Part 55

“Never offer advice just to appear concerned.”
― Jack Gardner

Part 56

“We have to be honest about what we want and take risks rather than lie to ourselves and make excuses to stay in our comfort zone.”
― Roy Bennett

Part 57

“Integrity is doing the right thing when nobody’s watching, doing as you say you would do.”
― Roy Bennett

Part 58

“The contest is not between Us and Them, but between Good and Evil, and if those who would fight Evil adopt the ways of Evil, Evil wins.”
― Thomas Jefferson

Part 59

“To make a deliberate falsification for personal gain is the last, worst depth to which either scholar or artist can descend in work or life.”
― Dorothy L Sayers

Part 60

“Character is doing the right thing when nobody’s looking. There are too many people who think that the only thing that’s right is to get by, and the only thing that’s wrong is to get caught.”
― J.C. Watts Jr.

Part 61

“Real integrity of mind, cannot admit of a person’s changing his manners to accommodate himself to every kind of company he meets with: if he have no proper character of his own, he must lead those astray who follow him, and be so far unworthy of confidence.”
― George Dillwyn

Part 62

“Secrets are commonly safest with those who are least eager to possess them; for they who have no scruple to tempt others to betray a secret confided in them, will hardly have sufficient integrity to refrain from divulging it still further.”
― George Dillwyn

Part 63

“Most people are clever because they don’t know how to be honest.”
― William Gaddis

Part 64

“Our lives say much more about how we think than our books do. The theories we preach are not always the ones we actually believe. The theories we live are the ones we really believe.”
― R.C. Sproul

Part 65

“I’ve heard it said of faith that first we jump, and then we grow wings. Integrity is like that too, I think. That’s what you have to gain. The sacrifice turns into a gift that is priceless.”
― Matt Baldwin

Part 66

“Nobody will ever take you serious in life, until they know that your yes is yes and your no is no.”
― Bamigboye Olurotimi

Part 67

“Justification for infidelity and dishonesty in all their manifestations lies in the marginal cost economics of “just this once”.”
― Clayton M. Christensen

Part 68

“Whatever is rightly done, however humble, is noble.”
― Henry Royce

Part 69

“Living a life of integrity is one of the greatest missions we can undertake.”
― Greg Anderson

Part 70

“Your integrity is sacrosanct. It is who you are. Never let anyone step on your integrity – that’s absolutely where you must stand solid.”
― Ret. Gen. Peter Pace

Part 71

“Would to God we were all Christians who profess to be Christians, and that we lived up to what we profess. Then would the Christian shine forth “clear as the sun, fair as the moon,” and what besides — why, “amazing as an army with banners”! A consistent Church is an amazing Church — an honest, upright Church would shake the world! The tramp of godly men is the tramp of heroes; these are the thundering legions that sweep everything before them. The men that are what they profess to be, hate the semblance of a lie — whatever shape it wears — and would sooner die than do that which is dishonest, or that which would be degrading to the glory of a Heaven-born race, and to the honor of Him by whose name they have been called! O Christians! You will be the world’s contempt; you will be their despising, and hissing unless you live for one objective!”
― Charles H. Spurgeon

Part 72

“There are, basically, three kinds of people: the unsuccessful, the temporarily successful, and those who become and remain successful. The difference is character.”
― Jon Hunstman

Part 73

“A legendary horse is praised not for its strength, but for its integrity.”
― Confucius

Part 74

“Do not make loose promises. But, when you make a promise, keep it. Be true to yourself. Be dependable. Whatever you have to do, do it the very best you can. It is not the fuss and feathers that count; it is the hard, steady effort that makes the grade.”
― John A. Widtsoe

Part 75

“She was beginning to realize that no amount of genius ever compensates for, nor excuses, a paucity of kindness, integrity, and unconflicted devotion.”
― Maria Popova

Part 76

“God grant, if we must have two eyes, that they may be both clear ones, one the eye of faith wholly fixed on Christ, the other the eye of obedience equally and wholly fixed on the same objective!”
― Charles H. Spurgeon

Part 77

“Beauty always fades, but it lasts so much longer if you lay a thick layer of intelligence and integrity underneath it.”
― Abbi Waxman

Part 78

“If I am bending the truth because it refuses to adhere to my agenda, I must realize that in the bending the truth has forewarned me that I am not crafting an agenda at all. Rather, I am crafting the trajectory of my own demise. And even though I adamantly reject such a notion as preposterous, it is a truth that I cannot bend.”
― Craig D. Lounsbrough

Part 79

“My Dad taught me at a very young age, if you know something’s wrong…don’t do it! Simplicity at its best.”
― Joy Marino

Part 80

“The lust, the hunger, the thirst for power – for this is the heart’s deadliest poison to integrity.”
― Criss Jami

Part 81

“Above the policies, above the law, above the government, above the constitution, there is a higher principle, that is the principle of individual integrity, without which no matter how much policies and laws we create, we cannot ensure health, safety and sanity in the society.”
― Abhijit Naskar

Part 82

“What good are our principles if we only stick to them when it’s easy?”
― Josh Steimle

Part 83

“A life of integrity is a life of stability.”
― Jeremy Gove

Part 84

“In most true tests of character, we and God are the only witnesses.”
― Jeremy Gove

Part 85

“Credibility and dishonesty are polar opposites, not just in motion, but also in motive. Credibility is driven by a selfless spirit of mutual respect. Dishonesty is driven by a selfish spirit of self-preservation.”
― Jeremy Gove

Part 86

“It is easier to work on your integrity when no one knows you, than to start working on it when you are at the top.”
― Manuel Corazzari

Part 87

“Truth is the thing that lies spend their lives running from.”
― Craig D. Lounsbrough

Part 88

“In a culture gone increasingly rogue, it has become apparent that our actions are designed to bypass the questions whose answers would invalidate those actions. And are we naïve enough to believe that because we bypass the questions, the questions will not eventually answer themselves at our expense?”
― Craig D. Lounsbrough

Part 89

“She wasn’t a woman of tremendous valor or daring heroism, but she’d always tried to lead her life in a way that would honor Jesus through small acts of goodness every day. Hour by hour, brick by brick, these small choices had slowly built a life of integrity.”
― Elizabeth Camden

Part 90

“If there is anything I have learned, it is this ― we must seek truth and goodness and stop stroking the ego of a crowd. In the words of C.S. Lewis, “Courage, dear heart.””
― Traci LaRussa

Part 91

“Don’t trade in your integrity for influence.”
― Richie Norton

Part 92

“Where one leaves a shopping cart in a parking lot says a lot about their character… or lack thereof.”
― Bobby Darnell

Part 93

“True integrity holds its ground even when such a stance means that you have let go of everything else that’s sitting on that ground.”
― Craig D. Lounsbrough

Part 94

“Principles are worth something only if you stick by them, even when they feel inconvenient. It’s easy to rationalize and find seemingly altruistic reasons for betraying a moral imperative, but that’s exactly when principles are most important.”
― Sarah McBride

Part 95

“The answers to today’s problems are not to eschew masculinity. We do not need to redefine masculinity. We need to reclaim it. We need to affirm the masculinity, the rough and tumble, the competition, and the discipline needed to teach boys right from wrong. We need to be able to give them safe avenues to express themselves, and to model for them what it means to accept and love people. We need to teach them things like honor, perseverance, integrity, adventure, justice, tenderness, determination, hope, love, peace, and freedom are all masculine virtues, and they are a part of what it means to be a man.”
― Josh Hatcher

Part 96

“Honesty creates integrity. Integrity creates inner peace.”
― PJ Ferguson

Part 97

“When it turns out that the greatest enemy of truth is not falsehood, but gibberish, it turns out that the greatest intellectual virtue is not deductive brilliance or factual erudition, but common sense. When it turns out that the greatest enemy of decency is not hatred, but arbitrariness, it turns out that the greatest moral virtue is not kindness or mercy, but perseverance. When it turns out that the greatest enemy of good taste is not vulgarity, but ostentation, it turns out that the greatest aesthetic virtue is not elegance or refinement, but moderation. And when it turns out that the greatest enemy of civilization is not barbarity, but infantilism, it turns out that the greatest cultural virtue is not sophistication, but integrity.”
― Jakub Bożydar Wiśniewski

Part 98

“Character is holding to our integrity when everyone around us is holding on to everything except their integrity and pressing us to do the same.”
― Craig D. Lounsbrough

Part 99

“A good character is a capital of more value than gold or silver. It is unaffected by panics or failures, and in that day when earthly possessions shall be swept away, it will bring rich returns. Integrity, firmness, and perseverance are qualities that all should seek earnestly to cultivate; for they clothe the possessor with a power which is irresistible—a power which makes him strong to do good, strong to resist evil, strong to bear adversity.”
― Ellen White

Part 100

“Integrity in little things, the performance of little acts of fidelity and little deeds of kindness, will gladden the path of life; and when our work on earth is ended, it will be found that every one of the little duties faithfully performed has exerted an influence for good — an influence that can never perish.”
― Ellen White

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