Arthur Schopenhauer Thoughts & Quotes

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A man can be himself only so long as he is alone, and if he does not love solitude, he will not love freedom, for it is only when he is alone that he is really free.

 

A man’s delight in looking forward to and hoping for some particular satisfaction is a part of the pleasure flowing out of it, enjoyed in advance. But this is afterward deducted, for the more we look forward to anything the less we enjoy it when it comes.

 

All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.

 

Boredom is just the reverse side of fascination: both depend on being outside rather than inside a situation, and one leads to the other.

 

Buying books would be a good thing if one could also buy the time to read them in: but as a rule the purchase of books is mistaken for the appropriation of their contents.

 

Each day is a little life: every waking and rising a little birth, every fresh morning a little youth, every going to rest and sleep a little death.

 

Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world.

 

Every possession and every happiness is but lent by chance for an uncertain time, and may therefore be demanded back the next hour.

 

For an author to write as he speaks is just as reprehensible as the opposite fault, to speak as he writes; for this gives a pedantic effect to what he says, and at the same time makes him hardly intelligible.

 

Great minds are related to the brief span of time during which they live as great buildings are to a little square in which they stand: you cannot see them in all their magnitude because you are standing too close to them.

 

Honor means that a man is not exceptional; fame, that he is. Fame is something which must be won; honor, only something which must not be lost.

 

If we were not all so interested in ourselves, life would be so uninteresting that none of us would be able to endure it.

 

If you want to know your true opinion of someone, watch the effect produced in you by the first sight of a letter from him.

 

In action a great heart is the chief qualification. In work, a great head.

 

In our monogamous part of the world, to marry means to halve one’s rights and double one’s duties.

 

It is only a man’s own fundamental thoughts that have truth and life in them. For it is these that he really and completely understands. To read the thoughts of others is like taking the remains of someone else’s meal, like putting on the discarded clothes of a stranger.

 

Men are by nature merely indifferent to one another; but women are by nature enemies.

 

Money is human happiness in the abstract; he, then, who is no longer capable of enjoying human happiness in the concrete devotes himself utterly to money.

 

National character is only another name for the particular form which the littleness, perversity and baseness of mankind take in every country. Every nation mocks at other nations, and all are right.

 

Nature shows that with the growth of intelligence comes increased capacity for pain, and it is only with the highest degree of intelligence that suffering reaches its supreme point.

 

Newspapers are the second hand of history. This hand, however, is usually not only of inferior metal to the other hands, it also seldom works properly.

 

Opinion is like a pendulum and obeys the same law. If it goes past the centre of gravity on one side, it must go a like distance on the other; and it is only after a certain time that it finds the true point at which it can remain at rest.

 

Religion is the masterpiece of the art of animal training, for it trains people as to how they shall think.

 

Satisfaction consists in freedom from pain, which is the positive element of life.

 

Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see.

 

The difficulty is to try and teach the multitude that something can be true and untrue at the same time.

 

The discovery of truth is prevented more effectively, not by the false appearance things present and which mislead into error, not directly by weakness of the reasoning powers, but by preconceived opinion, by prejudice.

 

The doctor sees all the weakness of mankind; the lawyer all the wickedness, the theologian all the stupidity.

 

The greatest of follies is to sacrifice health for any other kind of happiness.

 

There is no absurdity so palpable but that it may be firmly planted in the human head if you only begin to inculcate it before the age of five, by constantly repeating it with an air of great solemnity.

 

They tell us that suicide is the greatest piece of cowardice… that suicide is wrong; when it is quite obvious that there is nothing in the world to which every man has a more unassailable title than to his own life and person.

 

To find out your real opinion of someone, judge the impression you have when you first see a letter from them.

 

We can come to look upon the deaths of our enemies with as much regret as we feel for those of our friends, namely, when we miss their existence as witnesses to our success.

 

Wicked thoughts and worthless efforts gradually set their mark on the face, especially the eyes.

 

Will power is to the mind like a strong blind man who carries on his shoulders a lame man who can see.

 

With people of limited ability modesty is merely honesty. But with those who possess great talent it is hypocrisy.

 

With people of limited ability modesty is merely honesty. But with those who possess great talent it is hypocrisy.

 

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