A. N. Wilson Quotes


In universities and intellectual circles academics can guarantee themselves popularity -- or which is just as satisfying unpopularity -- by being opinionated rather than by being learned.

The approach of death certainly concentrates the mind.

People become dons because they are incapable of doing anything else in life.

Anti-Semitism is extremely common.

I think I became a Catholic to annoy my father.

If you know somebody is going to be awfully annoyed by something you write that's obviously very satisfying and if they howl with rage or cry that's honey.

I'm like Jane Austen - I work on the corner of the dining table.

I've never had a study in my life. I'm like Jane Austen - I work on the corner of the dining table.

The fact that logic cannot satisfy us awakens an almost insatiable hunger for the irrational.

I do not find it easy to articulate thoughts about religion. I remain the sort of person who turns off 'Thought for the Day' when it comes on the radio.

My kind publishers Toby Mundy and Margaret Stead of Atlantic Books have commissioned me to write the life of Queen Victoria.

It is eerie being all but alone in Westminster Abbey. Without the tourists there are only the dead many of them kings and queens. They speak powerfully and put my thoughts into vivid perspective.

Like many people in Britain I have an affectionate respect for the Queen and am surprised that I should be having such republican thoughts.

When I think about atheist friends including my father they seem to me like people who have no ear for music or who have never been in love.

It is hard to think of anything which more tragically and clearly exemplifies the phenomenon of good political intentions achieving the precise opposite of their aim.

It is remarkable how easily children and grown-ups adapt to living in a dictatorship organised by lunatics.

'In Memoriam' has been my companion for all my grownup life.

I had lost faith in biography.

A busybody's work is never done.

I don't write books inadvertently.

If you imagine writing 1 000 words a day which most journalists do that would be a very long book a year.

I've got nothing very original to say myself.

The United States is the ultimate land of optimistic promise but it also gave birth to quintessentially pessimistic tragedy: 'Moby-Dick.'

I'm boring. My beliefs are neither here nor there.

We cannot hope for a society in which formal organized religion dies out. But we can stop behaving as if it was worthy of our collective respect.

I'm starting to realize that people are beginning to want to know about me. It's a jolly strange idea.

Since Einstein developed his theory of relativity and Rutherford and Bohr revolutionised physics our picture of the world has radically changed.

I think that if you can't be loyal to the Church it's best to get out.

I believe the collapse of the House of Windsor is tied in with the collapse of the Church of England.

The really clever people now want to be lawyers or journalists.

IQ in general has improved since tests first began. Psychologists think that this is because modern life becomes ever more complicated.

I should prefer to have a politician who regularly went to a massage parlour than one who promised a laptop computer for every teacher.

As Hitler himself later enunciated it matters not how idiotic the creed what matters is the firmness with which it is enunciated.

I suppose if I'd got a brilliant first and done research I might still be a don today but I hope not. People become dons because they are incapable of doing anything else in life.

I very much dislike the intolerance and moralism of many Christians and feel more sympathy with Honest Doubters than with them.

I was once naïve enough to ask the late Duke of Devonshire why he liked the town of Eastbourne. He replied with a self-deprecating shrug that one of the things he liked was that he owned it.

We tell ourselves that God is dead when what we mean is that God is Dad and we wish him dead.

I don't think you can tell the objective truth about a person. That's why people write novels.

I might be deceiving myself but I do not think that I do have an inordinate fear of death.

Everyone writes in Tolstoy's shadow whether one feels oneself to be Tolstoyan or not.

If only Queen Elizabeth II had the intellectual political and linguistic skills of Queen Elizabeth I many people would support giving her some of the powers of an elected president.

History does not eliminate grievances. It lays them down like landmines.

In general Hitler embodied the view of any popular newspaper.

Iris Murdoch did influence my early novels very much and influence is never entirely good.

I think one of the very frightening things about the regime of the National Socialists is that it made people happy.

Fear of death has never played a large part in my consciousness - perhaps unimaginative of me.

Truth comes to us mediated by human love.

The latest research has revealed that women have a higher IQ than men.

Reading about Queen Victoria has been a passion of mine since as a child I came across Laurence Housman's play 'Happy and Glorious ' with its Ernest Shepard illustrations.

We while noting many things amiss about Victorian society more often sense them judging us.

If you imagine writing 1 000 words a day which most journalists do that would be a very long book a year. I don't manage nearly that... but I have published slightly too much recently.

I'm not saying all publishers have to be literary but some interest in books would help.

Tennyson seems to be the patron saint of the wishy washies which is perhaps why I admire him so much not only as a poet but as a man.

I wanted passionately to be a priest.