Lois McMaster Bujold Quotes

Any community's arm of force - military, police, security - needs people in it who can do neccesary evil, and yet not be made evil by it. To do only the necessary and no more. To constantly question the assumptions, to stop the slide into atrocity.
Experience suggests it doesn't matter so much how you got here, as what you do after you arrive.
Our children change uswhether they live or not.
But pain... seems to me an insufficient reason not to embrace life. Being dead is quite painless. Pain, like time, is going to come on regardless. Question is, what glorious moments can you win from life in addition to the pain
Children might or might not be a blessing, but to create them and then fail them was surely damnation.
My home is not a place, it is people.
Suicidal glory is the luxury of the irresponsible. We're not giving up. We're waiting for a better opportunity to win.
Reputation is what other people know about you. Honor is what you know about yourself.
Guard your honor. Let your reputation fall where it will. And outlive the bastards.
Good soldiers never pass up a chance to eat or sleep. They never know how much they'll be called on to do before the next chance.
It's important that someone celebrate our existence... People are the only mirror we have to see ourselves in. The domain of all meaning. All virtue, all evil, are contained only in people. There is none in the universe at large. Solitary confinement is a punishment in every human culture.
I don't confuse greatness with perfection. To be great anyhow isthe higher achievement.
How could you be a Great Man if history brought you no Great Events, or brought you to them at the wrong time, too young, too old
It was never what I wanted to buy that held my heart's hope. It was what I wanted to be.
Some prices are just too high, no matter how much you may want the prize. The one thing you can't trade for your heart's desire is your heart.
I am who I choose to be. I always have been what I chosethough not always what I pleased.
If you want to catch something, running after it isn't always the best way.
His mother had often said, When you choose an action, you choose the consequences of that action. She had emphasized the corollary of this axiom even more vehemently when you desired a consequence you had damned well better take the action that would create it.
You try to give away what you want yourself.
If you can't do what you want, do what you can.
Honesty is the only way with anyone, when you'll be so close as to be living inside each other's skins.
War is not its own end, except in some catastrophic slide into absolute damnation. It's peace that's wanted. Some better peace than the one you started with.
A hundred objective measurements didn't sum the worth of a garden only the delight of its users did that. Only the use made it mean something.
Adversity does teach who your real friends are.
If you're trying to take a roomful of people by surprise, it's a lot easier to hit your targets if you don't yell going through the door.
A weapon is a device for making your enemy change his mind.
Adulthood isn't an award they'll give you for being a good child. You can waste... years, trying to get someone to give that respect to you, as though it were a sort of promotion or raise in pay. If only you do enough, if only you are good enough. No. You have to just... take it. Give it to yourself, I suppose. Say, I'm sorry you feel like that and walk away. But that's hard.
An honor is not diminished for being shared.
A tactical retreat is not a bad response to a surprise assault, you know. First you survive. Then you choose your own ground. Then you counterattack.
Exile, for no other motive than ease, would be the last defeat, with no seed of future victory in it.
If the truth doesn't save us, what does that say about us
The dead cannot cry out for justice it is a duty of the living to do so for them.
Never... ever suggest they don't have to pay you. What they pay for, they'll value. What they get for free, they'll take for granted, and then demand as a right. Hold them up for all the market will bear.
A good friend of my son's is a son to me.
You couldn't be that good and not know it, somewhere in your secret heart, however much you'd been abused into affecting public humility.
If power was an illusion, wasn't weakness necessarily one also
You have to be careful who you let define your good.
When you give each other everything, it becomes an even trade. Each wins all.
If you make it plain you like people, it's hard for them to resist liking you back.
You don't pay back your parents. You can't. The debt you owe them gets collected by your children, who hand it down in turn. It's a sort of entailment. Or if you don't have children of the body, it's left as a debt to your common humanity. Or to your God, if you possess or are possessed by one.
I take it as a man's duty to restrain himself.
Some men just aren't cut out for paternity. Better they should realize it before and not after they become responsible for a son.
There are always survivors at a massacre. Among the victors, if nowhere else.
What you are is a question only you can answer.
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