It’s never been my experience that men part with life any more readily at eighty than they do at eighteen.
Noon one may keep as one will, but evening sets in on its own account.
Live as you will wish to have lived when you are dying.
Into the darkness they go, the wise and the lovely.
Dante says that the journey begins right here. In the middle of the road. Right beneath your feet. This is the place. There is no other place and no other time. Even if you are successful and follow the road you have set yourself, you can never leave here. Despite everything you have achieved, life refuses to grant you immunity from its difficulties. Becoming aware of this after a lifetime of accepting success as the ultimate healing balm is, declares Dante, like waking up in a dark wood.
It is only when we realize that life is taking us nowhere that it begins to have meaning.
I just wish they’d give me one speck of proof that this world of theirs couldn’t have been set up and handled better by a half dozen idiots bound hand and foot at the bottom of a ten-mile well.
To be a warrior is to learn to be genuine in every moment of your life.
Wishing to be known only for what one really is is like putting on an old, easy, comfortable garment. You are no longer afraid of anybody or anything. You say to yourself, “Here I am — just so ugly, dull, poor, beautiful, rich, interesting, amusing, ridiculous. Take me or leave me. . . .” It is like a great burden rolled off a man’s back when he comes to want to appear nothing that he is not, to take out of life only what is truly his own, and to wait for something strong and deep within him or behind him to work through him.
For some strange reason, we believe that anyone who lived before we were born was in some peculiar way a different kind of human being from any we have come in contact with in our own lifetime. This concept must be changed; we must realize in our bones that almost everything in time and history has changed except the human being.
People wish to be settled. Only as far as they are unsettled is there any hope for them.
Do not cherish the unworthy desire that the changeable might become the unchanging.
Abdul Kassem Ismael, Grand Vizier of Persia in the tenth century, couldn’t bear to part with his 117,000-volume library when he traveled, and he had the books carried by a caravan of four hundred camels trained to walk in alphabetical order.
It is hard to believe in God, but it is no easier to believe in man.
Do you think that the same power that gave you radiance in the womb would abandon you now? It is you who have turned away and walked alone into the dark.
There is nothing but meat!
Death destroys the body, as the scaffolding is destroyed after the building is up and finished. And he whose building is up rejoices at the destruction of the scaffolding and of the body.
Surprise will be my last emotion, not fear.
Death transfigured her. In a matter of minutes I saw the beauty of her young days reassert itself on her blurred careworn face. It was like something in music, the reestablishment of the original key, the return of the theme.