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Neon structure next to copy that reads 'It's inside us all' and 'Where is the ECS?'' | Source: Unsplash
Source: Neon structure next to copy that reads 'It's inside us all' and 'Where is the ECS?'' | Source: Unsplash

51 Quotes on the Subtle Yet Potent Art of Discernment

Dayna Remus
Oct 26, 2022
03:20 P.M.
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In its simplest terms, discernment is the ability to have keen insight into differences. This can apply to many fields, such as art or being able to taste the differences in varying cuisine. Often, it refers to making the right choices in life. Help yourself develop your discerning abilities by reading the 51 quotes below.

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None of us are perfect, and we have all made regrettable decisions during our lifetimes. These decisions can range from something major such as entering into a long-term relationship that wasn't right for us, or something minor, such as choosing to go to a party that ended up being boring.

As we get older, most of us learn to make better decisions as our ability to discern becomes more acute and practiced. However, no matter how much wiser we become, there is always room for improvement. Clear up your blindspots by reading the following 51 quotes on discernment.

Craig D. Lounsbrough’s quote: "Choose your cause wisely, or it may destroy you thoroughly." | Image: AmoDays

Craig D. Lounsbrough’s quote: "Choose your cause wisely, or it may destroy you thoroughly." | Image: AmoDays

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Quotes on What True Discernment Is

"Some people think they have discernment when actually they are just suspicious. Suspicion comes out of the unrenewed mind; discernment comes out of the renewed spirit." — Joyce Meyer

"Judgment is discernment on a bad hair day." — Mary Anne Radmacher

"True discernment means not only distinguishing the right from the wrong; it means distinguishing the primary from the secondary, the essential from the indifferent, and the permanent from the transient. And, yes, it means distinguishing between the good and the better, and even between the better and the best." — Sinclair B. Ferguson

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"Intelligence is not discernment and judgment or critical evaluation." — Jiddu Krishnamurti

"God never gives us discernment in order that we may criticize, but that we may intercede." — Oswald Chambers

Mary Anne Radmacher's quote: "Judgment is discernment on a bad hair day." | Image: AmoDays

Mary Anne Radmacher's quote: "Judgment is discernment on a bad hair day." | Image: AmoDays

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Quotes about Society and Discernment

"When fake news is repeated, it becomes difficult for the public to discern what's real." — Jimmy Gomez

"Leaders with no discernment can do tremendous damage in a short amount of time." — Mel Lawrence

"Education is vital to discern between knowledge and learning." — Bulleh Shah

"Let discernment in matters of fashion and entertainment determine who should get the vote, and half the country would be disenfranchised. " — Howard Jacobson

Quotes on Implementing Discernment

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"When you learn what you can live without, you are able to ask life for the very best because you possess the gift of discernment. You are able to create an authentic life because you are able to make conscious choices." — Sarah Ban Breathnach

  Anthony Liccione's quote: "Don't let the eyes guide the heart, but have the heart guide the eyes." | Image: AmoDays

Anthony Liccione's quote: "Don't let the eyes guide the heart, but have the heart guide the eyes." | Image: AmoDays

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"He who knows others is clever; He who knows himself has discernment." — Laozi

"The more validation I need, the less discernment I have." — Kurt Hanks

"Be courageous and face this moment in time consciously and with all the discernment and clarity within your power." — James O'Dea

"We need discernment in what we see and what we hear and what we believe." — Charles R. Swindoll

"There is timing in the whole life of the warrior, in his thriving and declining, in his harmony and discord. Similarly, there is timing in the way of the merchant in the rise and fall of capital. All things entail rising and falling timing. You must be able to discern this." — Miyamoto Musashi

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Erwin Rommel’s quote: "Don't fight a battle if you don't gain anything by winning." | Image: AmoDays

Erwin Rommel’s quote: "Don't fight a battle if you don't gain anything by winning." | Image: AmoDays

"Let discernment be your trustee, and mistakes your teacher." — T.F. Hodge

"In order to discern truth in our hearts, we must unpack the lies." — Evinda Lepins

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"Whoever believes in the good in people draws forth the good in people." — Jean Paul

"Don't let the eyes guide the heart, but have the heart guide the eyes." — Anthony Liccione

"If you could only keep quiet, clear of memories and expectations, you would be able to discern the beautiful pattern of events. It's your restlessness that causes chaos." — Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

T.F. Hodge’s quote: "Let discernment be your trustee, and mistakes your teacher." | Image: AmoDays

T.F. Hodge’s quote: "Let discernment be your trustee, and mistakes your teacher." | Image: AmoDays

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"The most important part of discernment is pinpointing the forces to be reckoned with, both the constructive and destructive." — Criss Jami

"Don't fight a battle if you don't gain anything by winning." — Erwin Rommel

Wise Perspectives on Discernment

"Choose your cause wisely, or it may destroy you thoroughly." — Craig D. Lounsbrough

"The more observing ones may have seen, but discerning people are usually discreet and often kind, for we usually bleed a little before we begin to discern." — Willa Cather

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"The ability of discerning high quality unavoidably implies the ability of identifying shortcomings." — Edsger Dijkstra

 Emily Grabatin’s quote: "A decision unmade is still a decision. It won't go away. Neither will problems or more options." | Image: AmoDays

Emily Grabatin’s quote: "A decision unmade is still a decision. It won't go away. Neither will problems or more options." | Image: AmoDays

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"Some people become so expert at reading between the lines they don't read the lines." — Margaret Millar

"The first point of wisdom is to discern that which is false; the second, to know that which is true." — Lactantius

"The victim of mind manipulation does not know that he is a victim. To him, the walls of his prison are invisible, and he believes himself to be free." — Aldous Huxley

"Discernment is not a matter of telling the difference between right and wrong; rather, it is telling the difference between right and almost right." — Charles Spurgeon

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"Discernment is a power of the understanding in which few excel. Is not that owing to its connection with impartiality and truth? For are not prejudice and partiality blind?" — Fulke Greville 1st Baron Brooke

Glenda Green’s quote: "Love examines every option available to bring about an improvement in life. This kind of discernment is an act of decency, not an act of judgment." | Image: AmoDays

Glenda Green’s quote: "Love examines every option available to bring about an improvement in life. This kind of discernment is an act of decency, not an act of judgment." | Image: AmoDays

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"Sound judgment, with discernment, is the best of seers." — Euripides

"Discernment is the son of good judgment and the father of self-control. When mixed with an already clear conscience, the ability to read the true motives of a critic keeps one's conscience both clear and at ease." — Criss Jami

"Remember, anybody can say anything! Anybody can write anything! Practice discernment or intelligent evaluation." — Choa Kok Sui

"It has always seemed that a fear of judgment is the mark of guilt and the burden of insecurity." — Criss Jami

"It's funny: I always imagined when I was a kid that adults had some kind of inner toolbox full of shiny tools: the saw of discernment, the hammer of wisdom, the sandpaper of patience. But then, when I grew up, I found that life handed you these rusty bent old tools - friendships, prayer, conscience, honesty - and said, 'do the best you can with these; they will have to do.' And mostly, against all odds, they do." — Anne Lamott

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Lewis B. Smedes’ quote: "Seeing reality for what it is is what we call discernment. The work of discernment is very hard." | Image: AmoDays

Lewis B. Smedes’ quote: "Seeing reality for what it is is what we call discernment. The work of discernment is very hard." | Image: AmoDays

"Discernment is a trust put into practice." — Peter Santos

"A decision unmade is still a decision. It won't go away. Neither will problems or more options." — Emily Grabatin

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"Obscurity is dispelled by augmenting the light of discernment, not by attacking the darkness." — Socrates

"It's not at all hard to understand a person; it's only hard to listen without bias." — Criss Jami

"When a person goes into a relationship emotionally needy, they are not going to have discernment in choosing people." — Jennifer O'Neill

Peter Santos’ quote: "Discernment is a trust put into practice."  | Image: AmoDays

Peter Santos’ quote: "Discernment is a trust put into practice." | Image: AmoDays

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"Love examines every option available to bring about an improvement in life. This kind of discernment is an act of decency, not an act of judgment." — Glenda Green

"Seeing reality for what it is is what we call discernment. The work of discernment is very hard." — Lewis B. Smedes

Quotes on Spiritual Discernment

"Discernment is God's call to intercession, never to faultfinding." — Corrie Ten Boom

"This is a time when all of God's people need to keep their eyes and their Bibles wide open. We must ask God for discernment as never before." — David Jeremiah

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"The simple power of prayer can save us all kinds of time and trouble if we will ask God to give us wisdom and discernment in our relationships." — Joyce Meyer

Jack Canfield’s quote: "As you meditate and become more spiritually attuned, you can better discern and recognize the sound of your higher self or the voice of God" | Image: AmoDays

Jack Canfield’s quote: "As you meditate and become more spiritually attuned, you can better discern and recognize the sound of your higher self or the voice of God" | Image: AmoDays

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"Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance." — Proverbs 1:5 (Bible Verse)

"My choices, including those related to the day-to-day aspects of life, like the use of a modest car, are related to a spiritual discernment that responds to a need that arises from looking at things, at people, and from reading the signs of the times. Discernment in the Lord guides me in my way of governing." — Pope Francis

"The word of wisdom is missing,' he continued, 'We need the gift of discernment again in our pulpits. It is not [the] ability to predict that we need, but the anointed eye, the power of spiritual penetration and interpretation, the ability to appraise the religious scene as viewed from God's position, and to tell us what is actually going on.'" — A.W. Tozer

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"Spiritual discernment involves using God's Word as the standard for distinguishing and separating ideas and behaviors. It distinguishes and separates truth from falsehood, darkness from light, healthy from unhealthy, sound from unsound, and good from evil, based on the Bible's plumb line." — Mary A. Kassian

Corrie Ten Boom’s quote: "Discernment is God's call to intercession, never to faultfinding." | Image: AmoDays

Corrie Ten Boom’s quote: "Discernment is God's call to intercession, never to faultfinding." | Image: AmoDays

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"Spirit discernment is rare because it is expensive. It means a sensitive conscience, an instructed understanding through study of the Book of God. It means a passion for purity, for truth, for the right, for Christ Himself, and for living uncompromisingly true in the daily habit. All this lies back of a seeing spirit eye. And these things cost. Discernment is expensive." — S. D Gordon

"As you meditate and become more spiritually attuned, you can better discern and recognize the sound of your higher self or the voice of God" — Jack Canfield

Charles R. Swindoll’s quote: "We need discernment in what we see and what we hear and what we believe." | Image: AmoDays

Charles R. Swindoll’s quote: "We need discernment in what we see and what we hear and what we believe." | Image: AmoDays

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Learning how to discern is more of an art than anything else. It must not only be approached intellectually but with one's intuition which has the ability to differentiate better than our minds could ever comprehend.

That being said, it is not an overnight win, and with any art, practice makes perfect. So, rather than cowering from the decisions we need to make, we should face them head-on, and slowly we will perfect our craft until it becomes second nature.

One of the most difficult choices many of us have to make is whether to hold on to or let go of certain situations in our lives. Read these quotes on holding on or letting go to try to gain some wisdom in this capacity.

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