When the world feels heavy, it's easy to question whether it's worthwhile to have faith in humanity. Our team of journalists spends each day look at the day's most heartbreaking news stories — but as a positive news media company, we do things a bit differently.

For every bad news story we encounter, we always take an extra step and "look for the helpers." And time after time — no matter what is happening in the world — we always find countless examples of people making a difference in the world.

Despite seeing the weight of the world, we still have a lot of hope in humanity. And we believe you should too.

In honor of World Humanitarian Day (and every day), we collected and curated the best quotes about humanity. Looking for more after you finish this article? Check out our list of the best humanitarian quotes, too.

Explore these inspiring humanity quotes

Famous Quotes About Humanity

“To deny people their human rights is to challenge their very humanity.”
Nelson Mandela

“To deny people their human rights is to challenge their very humanity.” — Nelson Mandela

“An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.”
— Martin Luther King, Jr.

“An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Every one of us is, in the cosmic perspective, precious. If a human disagrees with you, let him live. In a hundred billion galaxies, you will not find another.”
— Carl Sagan

“Every one of us is, in the cosmic perspective, precious. If a human disagrees with you, let him live. In a hundred billion galaxies, you will not find another.” — Carl Sagan‍

“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.”
— Mother Teresa

“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” — Mother Teresa

“Be certain that you do not die without having done something wonderful for humanity.”
— Maya Angelou

“Be certain that you do not die without having done something wonderful for humanity.” — Maya Angelou

“The bond of our common humanity is stronger than the divisiveness of our fears and prejudices.”
Jimmy Carter

“The bond of our common humanity is stronger than the divisiveness of our fears and prejudices.” — Jimmy Carter

On Kindness

“Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.”
— Dalai Lama

“Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.” — Dalai Lama

“In recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute.”
— Thurgood Marshall

“Sometimes we’re fractured by the choices we make; sometimes we’re shattered by things we would never have chosen. But our brokenness is also the source of our common humanity, the basis for our shared search for comfort, meaning, and healing. Our shared vulnerability and imperfection nurtures and sustains our capacity for compassion.”
Bryan Stevenson

“For me, forgiveness and compassion are always linked: how do we hold people accountable for wrongdoing and yet at the same time remain in touch with their humanity enough to believe in their capacity to be transformed?”
— bell hooks

“For me, forgiveness and compassion are always linked: how do we hold people accountable for wrongdoing and yet at the same time remain in touch with their humanity enough to believe in their capacity to be transformed?” — bell hooks

On Love For Humanity

“If you judge people, you have no time to love them.”
— Mother Teresa

“If you judge people, you have no time to love them.” — Mother Teresa

“We may have different religions, different languages, different colored skin, but we all belong to one human race. We all share the same basic values.”
— Kofi Annan

“Humanity is good. Some people are terrible and broken, but humanity is good. I believe that.”
Hank Green

“Humanity is good. Some people are terrible and broken, but humanity is good. I believe that.” — Hank Green

→ Read quotes about caring for the environment

Short Quotes

“We cannot despair of humanity, since we ourselves are human beings.”
— Albert Einstein

“We cannot despair of humanity, since we ourselves are human beings.” — Albert Einstein

“A feminist is anyone who recognizes the equality and full humanity of women and men.”
— Gloria Steinem

“The idea that some lives matter less is the root of all that is wrong with the world.”
Paul Farmer

“The sole meaning of life is to serve humanity.”
— Leo Tolstoy

“The sole meaning of life is to serve humanity.” — Leo Tolstoy‍

We Are All Human Quotes

“You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.”
— Mahatma Gandhi

“You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.” — Mahatma Gandhi

“During bad circumstances, which is the human inheritance, you must decide not to be reduced. You have your humanity, and you must not allow anything to reduce that. We are obliged to know we are global citizens. Disasters remind us we are world citizens, whether we like it or not.”
— Maya Angelou

“The moment we cry in a film is not when things are sad but when they turn out to be more beautiful than we expected them to be.”
— Alain de Botton

“I think music in itself is healing. It's an explosive expression of humanity. It's something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we're from, everyone loves music.”
— Billy Joel

“I think music in itself is healing. It's an explosive expression of humanity. It's something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we're from, everyone loves music.” — Billy Joel

On Helping Humanity

“You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals. To that end, each of us must work for his own improvement and, at the same time, share a general responsibility for all humanity, our particular duty being to aid those to whom we think we can be most useful.”
— Marie Curie

“You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals. To that end, each of us must work for his own improvement and, at the same time, share a general responsibility for all humanity, our particular duty being to aid those to whom we think we can be most useful.” — Marie Curie

“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 – that is the first law of nature.”
— Voltaire

“We should preserve every scrap of biodiversity as priceless while we learn to use it and come to understand what it means to humanity.”
E. O. Wilson

“My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together.”
Desmond Tutu

“My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together.” — Desmond Tutu

→ Read more quotes on activism and quotes on making a difference

On Being of Service to Humanity

“There is no higher religion than human service. To work for the common good is the greatest creed.”
— Woodrow Wilson

“There is no higher religion than human service. To work for the common good is the greatest creed.” — Woodrow Wilson

“One way or another, we all have to find what best fosters the flowering of our humanity in this contemporary life, and dedicate ourselves to that.”
— Joseph Campbell

“Act in such a way that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, never merely as a means to an end, but always at the same time as an end.”
— Immanuel Kant

“If you’re in the luckiest one percent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 percent.”
— Warren Buffett

“If you’re in the luckiest one percent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 percent.” — Warren Buffett

“The story of humanity is not a story of a few people who had huge, gigantic effects on the world. That's only the story we hear, because it's the easy story to tell. Caring for ourselves and other people is the only thing that has ever mattered to the future of our species.”
Hank Green

“Make a career of humanity. Commit yourself to the noble struggle for equal rights. You will make a better person of yourself, a greater nation of your country, and a finer world to live in.”
— Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Make a career of humanity. Commit yourself to the noble struggle for equal rights. You will make a better person of yourself, a greater nation of your country, and a finer world to live in.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.‍

More Deep and Inspiring Quotes

“Each day holds a surprise. But only if we expect it can we see, hear, or feel it when it comes to us. Let's not be afraid to receive each day's surprise, whether it comes to us as sorrow or as joy It will open a new place in our hearts, a place where we can welcome new friends and celebrate more fully our shared humanity.”
— Henri Nouwen

“Each day holds a surprise. But only if we expect it can we see, hear, or feel it when it comes to us. Let's not be afraid to receive each day's surprise, whether it comes to us as sorrow or as joy It will open a new place in our hearts, a place where we can welcome new friends and celebrate more fully our shared humanity.” — Henri Nouwen

“When freedom does not have a purpose, when it does not wish to know anything about the rule of law engraved in the hearts of men and women, when it does not listen to the voice of conscience, it turns against humanity and society.”
— Pope John Paul II

“We have a choice about how we take what happens to us in our life and whether or not we allow it to turn us. We can become consumed by hate and darkness, or we're able to regain our humanity somehow, or come to terms with things and learn something about ourselves.”
— Angelina Jolie

“Dignity does not come from avenging insults, especially from violence that can never be justified. It comes from taking responsibility and advancing our common humanity.”
— Hillary Clinton

“Unless one lives and loves in the trenches, it is difficult to remember that the war against dehumanization is ceaseless.”
— Audre Lorde

“I’m for truth, no matter who tells it. I’m for justice, no matter who it is for or against. I’m a human being, first and foremost, and as such I’m for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.”
— Malcolm X

“I’m for truth, no matter who tells it. I’m for justice, no matter who it is for or against. I’m a human being, first and foremost, and as such I’m for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.” — Malcolm X

“You should not underestimate the power you have to affirm the humanity and dignity of the people around you. When you do that, they will teach you something about what you need to learn about human dignity, but also what you can do to be a change agent.”
Bryan Stevenson

“If you can’t draw close to the other and feel their humanity, then there won’t be any movement toward justice.”
— Ken Wytsma, on the Sounds Good Podcast

→ Read more quotes about light and darkness (and also light quotes and dark quotes)