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Wise Quotes about Philosophy

May you find great value in these Philosophy quotes and sayings.

If I am happy in spite of my deprivations,
if my happiness is so deep that it is a faith,
so thoughtful that it becomes a philosophy of life.
If, in short, I am an optimist,
my testimony to the creed of optimism is worth hearing.
- Helen Keller
...
Helen Keller (1880-1968) overcame being both deaf and blind
to become a famous author, lecturer, and activist
for women's suffrage, workers' rights, and ending war.

Be that self which one truly is.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Life has its own hidden forces which you can only discover by living.
- Soren Kierkegaard

People understand me so poorly that they don't even understand
my complaint about them not understanding me.
- Soren Kierkegaard


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Most men pursue pleasure with such breathless haste
that they hurry past it.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The minority is always stronger than the majority,
because the minority is generally formed by those
who really have an opinion.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Prayer doesn't change God, but changes him who prays
- Soren Kierkegaard

 

Far from idleness being the root of all evil,
it is rather the only true good.
- Soren Kierkegaard

People hardly ever make use of the freedom which they have,
for example, freedom of thought;
instead they demand freedom of speech as a compensation.
- Soren Kierkegaard

It seems essential, in relationships and all tasks,
that we concentrate only
on what is most significant and important.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The more a man can forget, the greater the number
of metamorphoses which his life can undergo,
the more he can remember, the more divine his life becomes.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Our life always expresses the result of our dominant thoughts.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom.
- Soren Kierkegaard

There is nothing with which every man is so afraid
as getting to know how enormously much
he is capable of doing and becoming.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Pleasure disappoints, possibility never
- Soren Kierkegaard

The highest and most beautiful things in life
are not to be heard about, nor read about, nor seen but,
if one will, are to be lived.
- Soren Kierkegaard

A man who as a physical being
is always turned toward the outside,
thinking that his happiness lies outside him,
finally turns inward and
discovers that the source is within him.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The truth is a snare:
you cannot have it, without being caught.
You cannot have the truth
in such a way that you catch it,
but only in such a way that it catches you.
- Soren Kierkegaard

At the bottom of enmity between strangers lies indifference.
- Soren Kierkegaard

If I am capable of grasping God objectively,
I do not believe, but precisely because
I cannot do this I must believe.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Face the facts of being what you are,
for that is what changes what you are.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The function of prayer is not to influence God,
but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The tyrant dies and his rule is over,
the martyr dies and his rule begins
- Soren Kierkegaard

Life can only be understood backwards;
but it must be lived forwards.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Love is all, it gives all, and it takes all.
- Soren Kierkegaard

During the first period of a man's life
the greatest danger is not to take the risk.
- Soren Kierkegaard

A discussion of philosophy is like a cat chasing its tail -
it may be an amusing diversion but
it has no chance for a satisfying conclusion.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

To dare is to lose one's footing momentarily.
Not to dare is to lose oneself.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The essence of philosophy is that a man should so live
that his happiness shall depend
as little as possible on external things.
- Epictetus

Never cease loving a person, and never give up hope for him,
for even the prodigal son who had fallen most low,
could still be saved; the bitterest enemy
and also he who was your friend could again be your friend;
love that has grown cold can kindle
- Soren Kierkegaard

Where am I? Who am I? How did I come to be here?
What is this thing called the world?
How did I come into the world?
Why was I not consulted?
And If I am compelled to take part in it,
Where is the director? I want to see him.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Ordinary people seem not to realize
that those who really apply themselves
in the right way to philosophy
are directly and of their own accord
preparing themselves for dying and death.
- Socrates

One's philosophy is not best expressed in words;
it is expressed in the choices one makes...
and the choices we make
are ultimately our responsibility.
- Eleanor Roosevelt

Do you not know that there comes a midnight hour
when every one has to throw off his mask?
Do you believe that life will always let itself be mocked?
Do you think you can slip away a little before midnight
in order to avoid this? Or are you not terrified by it?
I have seen men in real life who so long deceived others
that at last their true nature could not reveal itself;...
In every man there is something which to a certain degree
prevents him from becoming perfectly transparent to himself;
and this may be the case in so high a degree,
he may be so inexplicably woven into relationships of life
which extend far beyond himself that he almost cannot reveal himself.
But he who cannot reveal himself cannot love,
and he who cannot love is the most unhappy man of all.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Truth always rests with the minority,
and the minority is always stronger than the majority,
because the minority is generally formed by those
who really have an opinion,
while the strength of a majority is illusory,
formed by the gangs who have no opinion -
and who, therefore, in the next instant
(when it is evident that the minority is the stronger)
assume its opinion... while truth again reverts to a new minority.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Love does not alter the beloved, it alters itself.
- Soren Kierkegaard

I never considered a difference of opinion
in politics, in religion, in philosophy,
as cause for withdrawing from a friend.
- Thomas Jefferson

The self-assured believer is a greater sinner
in the eyes of God than the troubled disbeliever
- Soren Kierkegaard

God creates out of nothing. Wonderful you say.
Yes, to be sure, but he does what is still more wonderful:
he makes saints out of sinners.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Faith is the highest passion in a human being.
Many in every generation may not come that far, but none comes further.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The test of all beliefs is their practical effect in life.
If it be true that optimism compels the world forward,
and pessimism retards it, then it is dangerous to
propagate a pessimistic philosophy.
- Helen Keller

I've developed a new philosophy...
I only dread one day at a time.
- the character Charlie Brown in Charles M. Schulz' Peanuts comic

All philosophy lies in two words,
sustain and abstain.
- Epictetus

There is no need for temples,
no need for complicated philosophies.
My brain and my heart are my temples;
my philosophy is kindness.
- Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama

The philosophy of the school room in one generation
will be the philosophy of government in the next.
- Abraham Lincoln

I begin with the principle that all men are bores.
Surely no one will prove himself
so great a bore as to contradict me in this.
- Soren Kierkegaard

This is my simple religion.
There is no need for temples;
no need for complicated philosophy.
Our own brain, our own heart is our temple;
the philosophy is kindness.
- Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama

It is so hard to believe because it is so hard to obey.
- Soren Kierkegaard

I think that there is nothing, not even crime,
more opposed to poetry, to philosophy, ay, to life itself
than this incessant business.
- Henry David Thoreau

Art for art's sake is a philosophy of the well-fed.
- Frank Lloyd Wright

I am an Epicurean.
I consider the genuine (not the imputed) doctrines of Epicurus
as containing everything rational in moral philosophy
which Greek and Roman leave to us.
- Thomas Jefferson

Listen to the cry of a woman in labor at the hour of giving birth -
look at the dying man's struggle at his last extremity,
and then tell me whether something that begins and ends thus
could be intended for enjoyment.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Socialism is a philosophy of failure,
the creed of ignorance,
and the gospel of envy,
its inherent virtue is
the equal sharing of misery.
- Winston Churchill

Since boredom advances and boredom is the root of all evil,
no wonder, then, that the world goes backwards, that evil spreads.
This can be traced back to the very beginning of the world.
The gods were bored; therefore they created human beings.
- Soren Kierkegaard

We are not afraid to entrust the American people with unpleasant facts,
foreign ideas, alien philosophies, and competitive values.
For a nation that is afraid to let its people judge
the truth and falsehood in an open market
is a nation that is afraid of its people.
- John F. Kennedy

To the philosopher,
death is but the next great adventure.
- J. K. Rowling

By all means marry.
If you get a good wife, you'll be happy.
If you get a bad one, you'll become a philosopher
and that is a good thing for any man.
- Socrates

To a philosopher all news,
as it is called, is gossip,
and they who edit and read it
are old women over their tea.
- Henry David Thoreau

Social progress can be measured
by the social position of the female sex.
- Karl Marx
(German philosopher and political economist
whose ideas are credited as the foundation of modern communism)

My advice to you is get married:
if you find a good wife you'll be happy;
if not, you'll become a philosopher.
- Socrates

The man of science is a poor philosopher.
- Albert Einstein

Death leaves a heartache no one can heal,
love leaves a memory no one can steal.
- From a headstone in Ireland

Success is failure recycled.
Life is death reborn.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Without health, life is not life;
it is only a state of languor and suffering -
an image of death.
- The Buddha

Intellectual growth should commence at birth
and cease only at death.
- Albert Einstein

The moment you start seeing life
as non-serious, a playfulness,
all the burden on your heart disappears.
All the fear of death, of life,
of love - everything disappears.
- Osho

It is not death or pain that is to be dreaded,
but the fear of pain or death.
- Epictetus

Fear not death; for the sooner we die,
the longer shall we be immortal.
- Benjamin Franklin

A man's good name is his best monument
- from an old churchyard at Lockerbie, Scotland

It's not what you take when
you leave this world behind you.
It's what you leave behind you when you go.
- Randy Travis

'Tis the business of little minds to shrink,
but they whose heart is firm,
and whose conscience approves their conduct,
will pursue their principles unto death.
- Thomas Paine


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