54+ Best Konrad Lorenz Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Konrad Zacharias Lorenz was an Austrian zoologist, ethologist, and ornithologist. He shared the 1973 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Nikolaas Tinbergen and Karl von Frisch.

He is often regarded as one of the founders of modern ethology, the study of animal behavior and best known for his discovery of the principle of attachment, or imprinting, through which in some species a bond is formed between a new born animal and its caregiver. Inspirational Konrad Lorenz quotes will encourage you to think a little deeper than you usually would and broaden your perspective.

If you’re searching for life quotes and sayings that perfectly capture what you’d like to say or just want to feel inspired yourself, browse through an amazing collection of powerful Richard Dawkins quotes, famous Louis Pasteur quotes, and top Noam Chomsky quotes.

Most Famous Konrad Lorenz Quotes

I believe that present day civilized man suffers from insufficient discharge of his aggressive drive – Konrad Lorenz

The bond with a dog is as lasting as the ties of this earth can ever be. – Konrad Lorenz

There is no faith which has never yet been broken, except that of a truly faithful dog – Konrad Lorenz

Most people have forgotten how to live with living creatures, with living systems and that, in turn, is the reason why man, whenever he comes into contact with nature, threatens to kill the natural system in which and from which he live. – Konrad Lorenz

Philosophers are people who know less and less about more and more, until they know nothing about everything. Scientists are people who know more and more about less and less, until they know everything about nothing. – Konrad Lorenz

The competition between human beings destroys with cold and diabolic brutality… Under the pressure of this competitive fury we have not only forgotten what is useful to humanity as a whole, but even that which is good and advantageous to the individual. […] One asks, which is more damaging to modern humanity: the thirst for money or consuming haste… in either case, fear plays a very important role: the fear of being overtaken by one’s competitors, the fear of becoming poor, the fear of making wrong decisions or the fear of not being up to snuff… – Konrad Lorenz

The fidelity of a dog is a precious gift. – Konrad Lorenz

Just thinking that my dog loves me more than I love him, I feel shame. – Konrad Lorenz

The truth about an animal is far more exciting and altogether more beautiful than all the myths woven about it. – Konrad Lorenz

All living beings have received their weapons through the same process of evolution that moulded their impulses and inhibitions; for the structural plan of the body and the system of behaviour of a species are parts of the same whole…. Wordsworth is right: there is only one being in possession of weapons which do not grow on his body and of whose working plan, therefore, the instincts of his species know nothing and in the usage of which he has no correspondingly adequate inhibition. – Konrad Lorenz

All the advantages that man has gained from his ever-deepening understanding of the natural world that surrounds him, his technological, chemical, and medical progress, all of which should seem to alleviate human suffering… tends instead to favor humanity’s destruction. – Konrad Lorenz

Man appears to be the missing link between anthropoid apes and human beings. – Konrad Lorenz

The appeal of the cat lies in the very fact that she has formed no close bond with [man], that she has the uncompromising independence of a tiger or a leopard while she is hunting in his stables and barns: that she still remains mysterious and remote when she is rubbing herself gently against the legs of her mistress or purring contentedly in front of the fire. – Konrad Lorenz

The distance at which all shooting weapons take effect screens the killer against the stimulus sensation which would otherwise activate his killing inhibitions. The deep, emotional layers of our personality simply do not register the fact that the crooking of the finger to release a shot tears the entrails of another man. – Konrad Lorenz

A man sufficiently gifted with humor is in small danger of succumbing to flattering delusions about himself, because he cannot help perceiving what a pompous ass he would become if he did. – Konrad Lorenz

Truth in science can be defined as the working hypothesis best suited to open the way to the next better one. – Konrad Lorenz

Humor and knowledge are the two great hopes of our culture. – Konrad Lorenz

Every man gets a narrower and narrower field of knowledge in which he must be an expert in order to compete with other people. The specialist knows more and more about less and less and finally knows everything about nothing. – Konrad Lorenz

It is a good morning exercise for a research scientist to discard a pet hypothesis every day before breakfast. It keeps him young. – Konrad Lorenz

We do not take humor seriously enough. – Konrad Lorenz

The human mind, in taking us down the path of technocracy, has become the adversary of life itself and collaterally the adversary of the human soul. – Konrad Lorenz

The rushed existence into which industrialized, commercialized man has precipitated himself is actually a good example of an inexpedient development caused entirely by competition between members of the same species. Human beings of today are attacked by so-called manager diseases, high blood pressure, renal atrophy, gastric ulcers, and torturing neuroses: they succumb to barbarism because they have no more time for cultural interests. – Konrad Lorenz

The instinctive need to be the member of a closely knit group fighting for common ideals may grow so strong that it becomes inessential what these ideals are. – Konrad Lorenz

Barking dogs occasionally bite, but laughing men hardly ever shoot. – Konrad Lorenz

Historians will have to face the fact that natural selection determined the evolution of cultures in the same manner as it did that of species. – Konrad Lorenz

Most of the vices and mortal sins condemned today correspond to inclinations that were purely adaptive or at least harmless in primitive man – Konrad Lorenz

I have found the missing link between the higher ape and civilized man; it is we. – Konrad Lorenz

We had better dispense with the personification of evil, because it leads, all too easily, to the most dangerous kind of war: religious war. – Konrad Lorenz

Evil, by definition, is that which endangers the good, and the good is what we perceive as a value – Konrad Lorenz

One meteorologist remarked that if the theory were correct, one flap of a seagull’s wings would be enough to alter the course of the weather forever – Konrad Lorenz

More than any other product of human scientific culture scientific knowledge is the collective property of all mankind. – Konrad Lorenz

Natural selection does not give any preference at all to anything that, in the long run, could be advantageous for the species but blindly rewards everything that, momentarily, affords greater procreative success. – Konrad Lorenz

I would rather have a Scot come from Scotland to govern the people of this kingdom well and justly, than that you should govern them ill in the sight of all the world. – Konrad Lorenz

Hatred of humanity and love of animals make a very bad combination. – Konrad Lorenz

I believe that both art and the human striving for cognitive comprehension are manifest forms of the grand game in which nothing more is stipulated than the game’s rules; both art and actively solicited perceptions are but special cases of the recurring creative act to which we owe our existence. – Konrad Lorenz

Every mutation through a new combination of genetic factors that provides the organism with a new opportunity for coming to terms with the conditions of its environment signifies no more and no less than that new information about this environment has got into that organic system. Adaptation is essentially a cognitive process. – Konrad Lorenz

The cat is a wild animal that inhabits the homes of humans. – Konrad Lorenz

In nature we find not only that which is expedient, but also everything which is not so inexpedient as to endanger the existence of the species. – Konrad Lorenz

All scientific knowledge to which man owes his role as master of the world arose from playful activities. – Konrad Lorenz

The human soul is very much older than the human mind. – Konrad Lorenz

Scientific truth is universal, because it is only discovered by the human brain and not made by it, as art is. – Konrad Lorenz

Few animals display their mood via facial expressions as distinctly as cats. – Konrad Lorenz

I am convinced that of all the people on the two sides of the great curtain, the space pilots are the least likely to hate each other. Like the late Erich von Holst, I believe that the tremendous and otherwise not quite explicable public interest in space flight arises from the subconscious realization that it helps to preserve peace. May it continue to do so! – Konrad Lorenz

One could not be a successful scientist without realizing that, a goodly number of scientists are not only narrow-minded and dull, but also just stupid. – Konrad Lorenz

The neuro-physiological organization which we call instinct functions in a blindly mechanical way, particularly apparent when its function goes wrong. – Konrad Lorenz

I believe-and human psychologists, particularly psychoanalysts should test this-that present-day civilized man suffers from insufficient discharge of his aggressive drive. It is more than probable that the evil effects of the human aggressive drives, explained by Sigmund Freud as the results of a special death wish, simply derive from the fact that in prehistoric times intra-specific selection bred into man a measure of aggression drive for which in the social order today he finds no adequate outlet. – Konrad Lorenz

If you confine yourself to this Skinnerian technique, you study nothing, but the learning apparatus and you leave out everything that is different in octopi, crustaceans, insects and vertebrates. In other words, you leave out everything that makes a pigeon a pigeon, a rat a rat, a man a man, and, above all, a healthy man healthy and a sick man sick. – Konrad Lorenz

I see the creative accomplishments of which highly gifted humans are capable as special cases of the universal creative process, that game played by everyone against everyone else, from which wells up all that has never been before. – Konrad Lorenz

It ought to be realized by all dog owners that obesity shortens a dog’s life quite considerably, a life which is much too short anyhow. – Konrad Lorenz

Man has been driven out of the paradise in which he could trust his instincts. – Konrad Lorenz

The scientist knows very well that he is approaching ultimate truth only in an asymptotic curve and is barred from ever reaching it; but at the same time he is proudly aware of being indeed able to determine whether a statement is a nearer or a less near approach to the truth. – Konrad Lorenz

Visualize yourself confronted with the task of killing, one after the other, a cabbage, a fly, a fish, a lizard, a guinea pig, a cat, a dog, a monkey and a baby chimpanzee. In the unlikely case that you should experience no greater inhibitions in killing the chimpanzee than in destroying the cabbage or the fly, my advice to you is to commit suicide at your earliest possible convenience, because you are a weird monstrosity and a public danger. – Konrad Lorenz

One of the most dangerously vicious circles menacing the continued existence of all mankind arises through that grim striving for the highest possible position within the ranked order, in other words, the reckless pursuit of power which combines with an insatiable greed of neurotic proportions that the results of acquired power confer. – Konrad Lorenz

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