The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved — loved for ourselves, or rather, loved in spite of our selves.
Life in Lubbock, Texas, taught me two things: One is that God loves you and you’re going to burn in hell. The other is that sex is the most awful, filthy thing on earth and you should save it for someone you love.
Love’s a fire, but whether it’s going to warm your heart or burn down your house, you never can tell.
We praise Him, we bless Him, we adore Him, we glorify Him, and we wonder who is that baritone across the aisle and that pretty woman on our right who smells of apple blossoms. . . . We amend our prayers for the spiritual life with the hope that it will not be too spiritual.
The Virgin Mary was an unwed teenage mother.
In my experience, there is only one motivation, and that is desire. No reasons or principles contain it or stand against it.
I want to do with you what the spring does with the cherry trees.
Marriage is not a love affair. A love affair has to do with immediate personal satisfaction. Marriage is an ordeal; it means yielding, time and again. That’s why it’s a sacrament: you give up your personal simplicity to participate. And you are not giving to the other person; you are giving to the relationship. Because you are not giving to the other person, it is not impoverishing — it is life-building, life-fostering, enriching.
That is happiness: to be dissolved into something complete and great.
Seven years would be insufficient to make some people acquainted with each other, and seven days are more than enough for others.
By all means marry: if you get a good wife, you’ll become happy; if you get a bad one, you’ll become a philosopher.
Women like silent men. They think they’re listening.
Those who marry God can become domesticated too — it’s just as hum-drum a marriage as all the others. . . . It was God’s taste to be worshiped and their taste to worship, but only at stated hours, like a suburban embrace on a Saturday night.
My wife and I tried two to three times in the last forty years to have breakfast together, but it was so disagreeable that we had to stop.
My friends tell me I have an intimacy problem. But they don’t really know me.
Wasn’t marriage, like life, unstimulating and unprofitable and somewhat empty when too well-ordered and protected and guarded. Wasn’t it finer, more splendid, more nourishing when it was, like life itself, a mixture of the sordid and the magnificent; of mud and stars; of earth and flowers; of love and hate and laughter and tears and ugliness and beauty and hurt.
If love be not in the house, there is nothing.
I’m recording our history now on the bedroom wall, / And when we leave the landlord will come and paint over it all.
Despite his evident love of children, Hans Christian Andersen never married. Late in life his health declined rapidly; first he developed chronic bronchitis, then the more serious, and ultimately fatal, liver cancer. Unable to care for himself, he moved into the house of some friends near Copenhagen, where he could see the ocean from his room. One morning he quietly finished his tea, and was found a few minutes later in his bed, dead. In his hands was a farewell letter written forty-five years earlier by the only woman he had ever loved.
One regret, dear world, that I am determined not to have when I am lying on my deathbed is that I did not kiss you enough.