Jane Goodall Quotations

-It can seem as you look out that it’s just chaos and that we behave in terrible ways and we never really seem to get better. But we have to remember that compassion and love and altruism is equally deeply rooted in our primate heritage. They are just as evident in chimpanzees as the brutal, aggressive side of chimpanzee nature. We humans, therefore, have a choice ahead of us, we don’t have to go the aggressive route. We can push and push and push towards love and compassion. That is where I believe human destiny ultimately is taking us.

-Thinking back over my life, it seems to me that there are different ways of looking out and trying to understand the world around us. There’s a very clear scientific window. And it does enable us to understand an awful lot about what’s out there. There’s another window, it’s the window through which the wise men, the holy men, the masters, of the different and great religions look as they try to understand the meaning in the world. My own preference is the window of the mystic.

-If you look through all the different cultures. Right from the earliest, earliest days with the animistic religions, we have sought to have some kind of explanation for our life, for our being, that is outside of our humanity.

-I sometimes think that the chimps are expressing a feeling of awe, which must be very similar to that experience by early people when they worshipped water and the sun, things they didn’t understand.

-This is the most incredible, exciting, amazing thing that could possibly have happened. It happened while I was here. This is our third lot of twins in 38 years. It’s Gremlin, my favorite chimp. I mean look at them. Look. They’re less than a week old. Brand new. First of all, it’s amazingly exciting to have twins but to have twins born to your favorite female who I’ve known since she was an itsy-bitsy thing herself. All her other children I’ve known as tiny little babies. And she’s such a good mother. (On the birth of Chimpanzee twins)

-There are an awful lot of scientists today who believe that before very long we shall have unraveled all the secrets of the universe. There will be no puzzles anymore. To me it’d be really, really tragic because I think one of the most exciting things is this feeling of mystery, feeling of awe, the feeling of looking at a little live thing and being amazed by it and how its emerged through these hundreds of years of evolution and there it is and it is perfect and why.

-People say to me so often, ‘Jane how can you be so peaceful when everywhere around you people want books signed, people are asking these questions and yet you seem peaceful,’ and I always answer that it is the peace of the forest that I carry inside.

-I think that Gombe is sort of an anchor in a world that’s filled with ever expanding circles of activity. And in a way, Gombe is the heartbeat because in a way it’s made me what I am today and it’s something that doesn’t change in a world of change.

-I just have this absolute belief that humans are moving away from cruelty and destruction towards a time when we can truly live in harmony with nature. When we understand that there is a spiritual power around us from which we can draw strength. That is where I believe human destiny ultimately is taking us. I just hope we have time.

-The least I can do is speak out for those who cannot speak for themselves.

-The greatest danger to our future is apathy.
Jane Goodall