While not everyone will agree, we take it as a given that ideas matter, that they shape the world in which we live for good or for ill. If we didn’t believe in the power of ideas, we wouldn’t have this website.

Ideas are powerful precisely because they are ideas — they live far beyond the man who first came up with them. Killing them is far more difficult than killing a person. Inspiring people to action can remake the world with greater power than just about anything. History is filled with examples where ideas are even more powerful than armies in motion.

We live in a time when ideas both develop and transmit faster than ever thanks to changes in technology. This has also democratized the marketplace of ideas. Just about anyone can now access the information needed to innovate, whether that be in the tech sector or on the battlefield of ideas.

What’s more, this democratized access to ideas makes it easier than ever for us to expand our own mind and to achieve a better and more nuanced understanding of ideas. What once required advanced graduate study can now easily be done at home in our spare time.

This means that anyone can now put their informed and fully developed ideas out into the world, for better or for worse.

The following quotes illustrate just how powerful and important ideas are in our world.

Quotes About the Power of Ideas


Pablo Picasso quote on ideas


“You have to have an idea of what you are going to do, but it should be a vague idea.”

– Pablo Picasso


Victor Hugo quote on ideas


“The most powerful thing in the world is an idea whose time has come.”

– Victor Hugo


H.G. Wells quote on ideas


“Human history is, in essence, a history of ideas.”

– H.G. Wells


Jim Rohn quote on ideas


“Ideas can be life-changing. Sometimes all you need is just one more in a series of good ideas. It’s like dialing the numbers into the lock. You’ve got 5 or 6 numbers dialed into the lock, and the lock still won’t come up. But you don’t need 5 or 6 more numbers. Maybe you just need one more.”

– Jim Rohn


Aldous Huxley quote on ideas


“It is possible to argue that the really influential book is not that which converts ten millions of casual readers but rather that which converts the very few who at any given moment succeed in seizing power.  Marx and Sorel have been influential in the modern world.  Not so much because they were best sellers.  But because among their few readers were two men called respectively Lenin and Mussolini.”

– Aldous Huxley, speaking on how ideas influence people


Goethe quote on ideas


“Daring ideas are like chessmen moved forward. They may be beaten, but they may start a winning game.”

– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


JFK quote on ideas


“A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but an idea lives on. Ideas have endurance without death.”

– John F. Kennedy


Nolan Bushnell quote on ideas


“Everyone who’s ever taken a shower has an idea. It’s the person who gets out of the shower, dries off and does something about it who makes a difference.”

– Nolan Bushnell


Marie Curie quote on ideas


“Be less curious about people and more curious about ideas.”

– Marie Curie


Mark Twain quote on ideas


“There is no such thing as a new idea. It is impossible. We simply take a lot of old ideas and put them into a sort of mental kaleidoscope. We give them a turn and they make new and curious combinations. We keep on turning and making new combinations indefinitely; but they are the same old pieces of colored glass that have been in use through all the ages.”

– Mark Twain


Joke About AI quote on ideas


“A modern textile mill employs only a man and a dog – the man to feed the dog, and the dog to keep the man away from the machines.”

– Joke about artificial intelligence