| Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.|
|AUTHOR:||Aubrey Menen (191289)|
|QUOTATION:||There are three things which are real: God, human folly, and laughter. Since the first two pass our comprehension, we must do what we can with the third.|
|ATTRIBUTION:||AUBREY MENEN, Rama Retold, p. 231 (1954).|
This is a modern retelling of part of the Ramayana. President John F. Kennedy presented his friend, White House appointment secretary David Powers, with a silver beer mug for his birthday, April 26, 1963. The inscription on the mug was a slight variation on the lines above:
There are three things which are real:
God, human folly and laughter.
The first two are beyond our comprehension
So we must do what we can with the third.
The New York Times, April 29, 1963, p. 14.