Reviews of and Quotes From Dr. Schweitzer's Books

Here are my reviews of some of Albert Schweitzer's books. It is far from a comprehensive list of Schweitzer's books. All are English translations from French or German. Some of them are out of print, but generally can be found in a good research library or by a book search from a good used-book dealer. Also included here are reviews of compilations of his writings. See The Albert Schweitzer Page for reviews of books about Dr. Schweitzer and related information.

Reverence For Life

Written By:  Albert Schweitzer

Edited By: Thomas Kiernan

Translators Not Identified

Reviewed Edition:  Philosophical Library, 1965

Hardcover, 74 Pages

No ISBN Number


Table of Contents

This book contains a collection of Schweitzer quotations on ethics and the human spirit. Although a short book, it is very powerful. Schweitzer explains both the foundation of Reverence for Life and its application to everyday situations. Well written with no philosophical jargon, this book has my highest recommendation. Unfortunately, it is long out of print, but may be available via a used book search.

Quotes from Reverence For Life

[Excerpt from Albert Schweitzer Speaks Out reprinted from 1964 World Book Year Book] "At sunset of the third day, near the village of Igendja, we moved along an island set in the middle of the wide river. On a sandbank to our left, four hippopotamuses and their young plodded along in our same direction. Just then, in my great tiredness and discouragement, the phrase, 'Reverence for Life,' struck me like a flash. As far as I knew, it was a phrase I had never heard nor ever read. I realized at once that it carried within itself the solution to the problem that had been torturing me. Now I knew that a system of values which concerns itself only with our relationship to other people is incomplete and therefore lacking in power for good. Only by means of reverence for life can we establish a spiritual and humane relationship with both people and all living creatures within our reach. Only in this fashion can we avoid harming others, and, within the limits our our capacity, go to their aid whenever they need us."

[Excerpt from The Relations of the White and Colored Races, Contemporary Review, January 1928] "The fundamental rights of man are, first, the right to habitation; secondly, the right to move freely; thirdly, the right to the soil and subsoil, and to the use of it; fourthly, the right to freedom of labor and of exchange; fifthly, the right to justice; sixthly, the right to live within a natural national organization; and, seventhly, the right to education."

Table of Contents of Reverence For Life

     Introductory Note
  1. Feeling for Animal Life
  2. Respect for Life
  3. Mutual Knowledge
  4. Riddles of Existence
  5. The Meaning of Philosophy
  6. Goethe
  7. The Sanctuary of Thought
  8. Religion Is Not a Force
  9. When Thinking Was Religious
  10. What Do I Think?
  11. A New Ethical System Needed
  12. Reverence for Life
  13. Human Awareness
  14. The Goal of True Thought
  15. The Only Way to Save Ourselves
  16. Among the Africans
  17. The Will to Live

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