Quotes that inspire me

Whenever a read a new article, poem, or book, I jot down excerpts and quotes that strike me into a huge, messy Google doc. These quotes inspire and give me strength, so here are a few select ones that I have found especially meaningful:

“Don’t walk behind me; I may not lead. Don’t walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.”

― Jewish children’s song

“For Sartre, if we try to shut ourselves up inside our own minds, ‘in a nice warm room with the shutters closed’, we cease to exist. We have no cosy home; being out on the dusty road is the very definition of what we are.”

― Sarah Bakewell

“Life is like arriving late for a movie, having to figure out what was going on without bothering everybody with a lot of questions, and then being unexpectedly called away before you find out how it ends.”

― Joseph Campbell

“Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?”

― Abraham Lincoln

“I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.”

― Maya Angelou

“Friendship is born at that moment when one man says to another: ‘What! You too? I thought that no one but myself…’”

― C.S. Lewis

“The key is to keep company only with people who uplift you, whose presence calls forth your best.”

― Epictetus

“It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not.”

― André Gide

“The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read.”

― Mark Twain

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”

― Laozi

“It is never too late to be what you might have been.”

― George Eliot

“If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.”

― Mark Twain

“Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It’s the transition that’s troublesome.”

― Isaac Asimov

“A knight in shining armor is a man who has never had his metal truest tested.“

― Unknown

“A little nonsense now and then, is cherished by the wisest men.”

― Roald Dahl

“There is no moral arc in our universe that naturally bends towards justice; there are only hands that drag society by the collar kicking and screaming into a just and equitable dawning. Those hands belong to us.”

― Marcus Harrison Green

“Geniuses are simply people who’ve found what it is that makes them want to practice”

― Emalia Hinden

“The process of living seems to consist in coming to realize truths so ancient and simple that, if stated, they sound like barren platitudes. They cannot sound otherwise to those who have not had the relevant experience: that is why there is no real teaching of such truths possible and every generation starts from scratch.”

― C.S. Lewis

“The old appeals to racial, sexual and religious chauvinism, and to rabid nationalist fervor, are beginning not to work. A new consciousness is developing which sees the earth as a single organism, and recognizes that an organism, at war with itself, is doomed. We are one planet.”

― Carl Sagan

“Some people see things that are and ask, Why? Some people dream of things that never were and ask, Why not? Some people have to go to work and don’t have time for all that …”

― George Carlin

“Think like a man of action, act like a man of thought.”

― Henri Louis Bergson

“Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for mankind.”

― Horace Mann

“Fear is good. Like self-doubt, fear is an indicator. Fear tells us what we have to do. Remember our rule of thumb: The more scared we are of a work or calling, the more sure we can be that we have to do it.”

― Steven Pressfield

“In a situation of potential conflict, let compassion guide you.”

― Sharon Salzberg

“You just do it. You force yourself to get up. You force yourself to put one foot before the other, and God damn it, you refuse to let it get to you. You fight. You cry. You curse. Then you go about the business of living. That’s how I’ve done it. There’s no other way.”

― Elizabeth Taylor

“I think I fall in love a little bit with anyone who shows me their soul. This world is so guarded and fearful. I appreciate rawness so much.”

― Emery Allen

“The unexamined life is not worth living.”

― Socrates

“Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.”

― Winston Churchill

“We must not see any person as an abstraction. Instead, we must see in every person a universe with its own secrets, with its own treasures, with its own sources of anguish, and with some measure of triumph.”

— Elie Wiesel


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