Read these tolerance quotes and further explore the meaning of a powerful human action.
As with any other form of human expression, tolerance has a wide range of definitions. Some say tolerance is accepting the opinions and preferences of others even when you do not agree with them. It is not putting your opinions above those of others, even when you are certain you are right.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed that tolerance is the key to laying a foundation to transform our society, noting that “Tolerance is not passive.
It demands an active choice to reach out on the basis of mutual understanding and respect, especially where disagreement exists.
Tolerance means recognizing that our diversity is a strength.” Check these tolerance quotes and let us know what it means to you.
Don’t forget to also check out these patience quotes on life, love and success.
Thoughtful Quotes About Tolerance
1. “A man who cannot tolerate small misfortunes can never accomplish great things.” – Chinese Proverb
2. “It’s as though the adult world is intolerant of hopes and dreams that seem too fanciful, or too hopeful.” – Simeon Lindstrom, Intentional Living Hope
3. “Human diversity makes tolerance more than a virtue; it makes it a requirement for survival.” – Rene Dubos
4. “The only way to be tolerant of others is to be able to see the world through their eyes.” – Tohon, Landscape of a Mind
5. “When you are tolerant, you are allowing every individual whom you meet to follow the dictates of their own reason and conscience.” – Marilyn J. Awtry, River of Life
6. “Toleration is the greatest gift of the mind; it requires the same effort of the brain that it takes to balance oneself on a bicycle.” – Helen Keller
7. “In the practice of tolerance, one’s enemy is the best teacher.” – Dalai Lama XIV
8. “Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one’s own beliefs. Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others.” – John F. Kennedy
9. “Tolerance is the mindful capacity to love, respect, accept the differences that make people unique.” – Byron R. Pulsifer
10. “Toleration is a distinctively modern response to disagreement and difference, and its ills are variations on modernity’s own. ” – John R. Bowlin, ‘Tolerance Among the Virtues’
11. “Tolerance is the positive and cordial effort to understand another’s beliefs, practices, and habits without necessarily sharing or accepting them.” – Joshua Loth Liebman
12. “Tolerance and celebration of individual differences is the fire that fuels lasting love.” – Tom Hannah
13. “Tolerance is the oil which takes the friction out of life.” – Wilbert E. Scheer
14. “Tolerance is the virtue of the man without convictions.” – Gilbert K. Chesterton
15. “Tolerance is giving to every other human being every right that you claim for yourself” – Robert Green Ingersoll
Breaking ground with tolerance quotes
16. “Tolerance becomes a crime when applied to evil.” – Thomas Mann, ‘The Magic Mountain’
17. “The highest result of education is tolerance.” – Helen Keller
18. “Compassion and tolerance are not a sign of weakness, but a sign of strength.” – Dalai Lama XIV
19. “Everyone on Earth, they’d tell us, was carrying around an unseen history, and that alone deserved some tolerance.” – Michelle Obama, ‘Becoming’
20. “Tolerance is nothing more than patience with boundaries.” – Shannon L. Alder
21. “Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.” – Albert Einstein
22. “He who would practice the art of tolerance must guard well against an attitude of superiority, smugness, indifference and coldness.” – Wilfred Peterson
23. “If we could look into each other’s hearts and understand the unique challenges that each of us faces, I think we would treat each other much more gently, with more love, patience, tolerance and care.” – Marvin Ashton
24. “I have learned silence from the talkative, tolerance from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind; yet strange, I am ungrateful to these teachers.” – Kahlil Gibran, ‘The Prophet and Other Writings’
25. “Tolerance isn’t about not having beliefs. It’s about how your beliefs lead you to treat people who disagree with you.” – Timothy Keller, Twitter, 2018
26. “Tolerance is a virtue, but tolerance coupled with passivity is a vice.” – Chris Hedges
27. “Sooner or later, if man is ever to be worthy of his destiny, we must fill our hearts with tolerance.” – Stan Lee
28. “Tolerance of intolerance is cowardice.” – Ayaan Hirsi Ali
29. “What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other’s folly, and that is the first law of nature.” – Voltaire
30. “Tolerance is a virtue that depends upon peace and strength.” – Charles Lindbergh
Definition Of Tolerance Quotes
31. “Broad tolerance in the matter of beliefs is necessarily a part of the new ethics.” – Lafcadio Hearn
32. “Tolerance is a tremendous virtue, but the immediate neighbors of tolerance are apathy and weakness.” – James Goldsmith
33. “Broad-mindedness is related to tolerance; open-mindedness is the sibling of peace.” – Salman Rushdie
34. “It is thus tolerance that is the source of peace, and intolerance that is the source of disorder and squabbling.” – Pierre Bayle
35. “If tolerance is the best we can do in this moment, then by all means let’s be tolerant. But by stopping there, by merely tolerating each other, we miss so much.” – John Wesley Shipp
36. “Discomfort levels in our societies are rising, or so it would seem. In theory, we invoke diversity and tolerance. But in real life, we raise our hackles and withdraw into ourselves.” – Tariq Ramadan
37. “We should acknowledge differences, we should greet differences until difference makes no difference anymore.” – Dr. Adela A. Allen
38. “Tolerance and apathy are the last virtues of a dying society.” – Aristotle
39. “Discord is the great ill of mankind; and tolerance is the only remedy for it.” – Voltaire, ‘Philosophical Dictionary’
Tolerance quotes about open-mindedness
40. “As if reading his mind, Jamal-al-Din said, ‘To get what you love, you must first be patient with what you hate.” – Leila Aboulela, ‘The Kindness of Enemies’
41. “Acceptance and tolerance and forgiveness, those are life-altering lessons.” – Jessica Lange
42. “Christmas gift suggestions: To your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance…” – Oren Arnold
43. “All I require of a religion is that it be tolerant of those who do not agree with it.” – Roger Ebert, ‘Life Itself’
44. “If people but knew their own religion, how tolerant they would become, and how free from any grudge against the religion of others.” – Hazrat Inayat Khan, ‘The Bowl of Saki: Thoughts for Daily Contemplation from the Sayings and Teachings of Hazrat Inayat Khan’
45. “All of the world’s religions have important things to teach us, and they are not as different from each other as some would have you believe.” – Kent Allan Rees, ‘Molly Withers and the Golden Tree’
46. “Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding.” – Mahatma Gandhi
47. “It’s a universal law– intolerance is the first sign of an inadequate education. An ill-educated person behaves with arrogant impatience, whereas truly profound education breeds humility.” – Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn
48. “Tolerance should, strictly speaking, be only a passing mood; it ought to lead to acknowledgment and appreciation. To tolerate a person is to affront him.” – Goethe
49. “Tolerance, openness to argument, openness to self-doubt, willingness to see other people’s points of view.” – Sam Harris
50. “In a multi-racial society, trust, understanding and tolerance are the cornerstones of peace and order.” – Kamisese Mara
What did you learn from these tolerance quotes?
Tolerance is action-oriented, it requires mindfulness and sometimes work. We cannot take a tolerance break when it comes to how we treat others.
Tolerant people show strength in that they can deal with different opinions and perspectives. Ban Ki-Moon reminds us that it takes effort. He shared that “Tolerance can, and must, be learned. We need to nurture tolerance by promoting cultural understanding and respect — from parliaments to the playground. We need to tackle growing inequality and reject social exclusion based on gender, disabilities, sexual orientation, and ethnic or religious background.”
Diversity allows for growth, the more we learn about different people, the more we learn about our world. The more we know about our world, the better we can understand the people in it.
What’s your biggest takeaway from these tolerance quotes and sayings? How do you define tolerance? How do you express it? Let us know in the comments.
January 18, 2022 7:00 AM EST