June 2019

“Everything in moderation, including moderation.” -Oscar Wilde

“Gluttony chastises the glutton, Gula punit Gulax.” -Victor Hugo

Pride and Prejudice

“Upon the whole, therefore, she found, what has been sometimes found before, that an event to which she had been looking with impatient desire did not, in taking place, bring all the satisfaction she had promised herself. It was consequently necessary to name some other period for the commencement of actual felicity—to have some other point on which her wishes and hopes might be fixed, and by again enjoying the pleasure of anticipation, console herself for the present, and prepare for another disappointment.”

More quotes

Socrates

“I know that I am intelligent because I know that I know nothing.”

“Crito, we owe a rooster to Asclepius. Please, don’t forget to pay the debt.”

“Employ your time in improving yourself by other men’s writings, so that you shall gain easily what others have labored hard for.”

““Be slow to fall into friendship, but when you are in, continue firm and constant.”

“The beginning of wisdom is the definition of terms.”

“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.”

“He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.”

“The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be.”

“Wars and revolutions and battles, you see, are due simply and solely to the body and its desires. All wars are undertaken for the acquisition of wealth; and the reason why we have to acquire wealth is the body, because we are slaves in its service.” ~Plato

“He is richest who is content with the least, for content is the wealth of nature.”

“The end of life is to be like God, and the soul following God will be like Him.”

“Why should I not be happy? I have known what life is, now I would like to know what death is. I am at the door of a great mystery, and I am thrilled! I am going on a great journey into the unknown. I am simply full of wonder! I cannot wait!”

Aristotle

“Excellence is never an accident. It is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, and intelligent execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives – choice, not chance, determines your destiny.”

“A friend to all is a friend to none.”

“At his best, man is the noblest of all animals; separated from law and justice he is the worst.”

“Character may almost be called the most effective means of persuasion.”

“Criticism is something you can easily avoid — by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.”

“Education is an ornament in prosperity and a refuge in adversity.”

“It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.”

“The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living from the dead.”

“I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies; for the hardest victory is over self.”

A person often meets his destiny on the road he took to avoid it. ~Jean de La Fontaine

“What is meant for you, will reach you even if it is beneath two mountains.
What isn’t meant for you, won’t reach you even if it is between your two lips.”

“As a general rule, no matter how much physical strength and beauty people possess, they follow in the train of the rich. And yet if human beings would guide their lives by true principles, great wealth consists in living on a little with a contented mind; for of a little there is never a lack.” Lucretius

“If you are ever tempted to look for outside approval, realize that you have compromised your integrity. If you need a witness, be your own.” Epictetus

“You say you lack books? How, or to what end? Books are, no doubt, a preparation for life, but life itself is made up of things different from books. To ask for books is as though an athlete should complain, as he enters the arena, that he is not training outside. Life is what you were training for all along, this is what the leaping-weights, and the sawdust, and the young men you wrestled with were leading up to.” —Epictetus

Humble quotes

“Real poetry, is to lead a beautiful life. To live poetry is better than to write it.”

—Matsuo Basho

“For just as wood is the material of the carpenter, and bronze that of the sculptor, the art of living has each individual’s own life as its material.”

—Epictetus

“Rushing into action, you fail. Trying to grasp things, you lose them. Forcing a project to completion, you ruin what was almost ripe. Therefore the Master takes action
by letting things take their course.
He remains as calm at the end as at the beginning. He has nothing, thus has nothing to lose. What he desires is non-desire; what he learns is to unlearn.“

—Tao Te Ching

“If you can spend a perfectly useless afternoon in a perfectly useless manner, you have learned how to live.”

—Lin Yutang

“Having no destination, I am never lost.”

—Ikkyu

“No lure is greater than to possess what others want. No disaster greater than not to be content with what one has. No presage of evil greater than that men should be wanting to get more. Truly: “He who has once known the contentment that comes simply through being content, will never again be otherwise than contented.”

—Lao Tzu

“The wise man, then, when he must act, knows how to do nothing. Letting things alone, he rests in his original nature…Let him sit like a corpse, with the dragon power alive all around him. In complete silence, his voice will be like thunder. His movements will be invisible, like those of a spirit, but the powers of heaven will go with them. Unconcerned, doing nothing, he will see all things grow ripe around him.”

—Chuang Tzu

A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.

– Lao Tzu

Emerald and Ignorance

“Everything in any way beautiful has its beauty of itself, inherent and self-sufficient: praise is no part of it. At any rate, praise does not make anything better or worse. This applies even to the popular conception of beauty, as in material things or works of art. So does the truly beautiful need anything beyond itself? No more than law, no more than truth, no more than kindness or integrity. Which of these things derives its beauty from praise, or withers under criticism? Does an emerald lose its quality if it is not praised? And what of gold, ivory, purple, a lyre, a dagger, a flower, a bush?”
― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

It is within a man’s power to love even those who sin against him. This becomes possible when you realize that they are your brothers, that they wrong you unintentionally or out of ignorance, that in a little while you and they will be dead, and above all, that they have not really hurt you so long as you have not sullied your conscience or damaged your inner self by responding in kind. ― Marcus Aurelius

“how much more harmful are the consequences of anger…than the circumstances that aroused them in us.” -Marcus Aurelius

“If anyone tells you that a certain person speaks ill of you, do not make excuses about what is said of you but answer, “He was ignorant of my other faults, else he would not have mentioned these alone.”― Epictetus

“When any person harms you, or speaks badly of you, remember that he acts or speaks from a supposition of its being his duty. Now, it is not possible that he should follow what appears right to you, but what appears so to himself. Therefore, if he judges from a wrong appearance, he is the person hurt, since he too is the person deceived. For if anyone should suppose a true proposition to be false, the proposition is not hurt, but he who is deceived about it. Setting out, then, from these principles, you will meekly bear a person who reviles you, for you will say upon every occasion, ‘It seemed so to him.’” -Epictetus

When people injure you, ask yourself what good or harm they thought would come of it. If you understand that, you’ll feel sympathy rather than outrage or anger. Your sense of good and evil may be the same as theirs, or near it, in which case you have to excuse them. Or your sense of good and evil may differ from theirs. In which case they’re misguided and deserve your compassion. Is that so hard? -Marcus Aurelius

“You will not be punished for your anger, you will be punished by your anger.” – Buddha

“…men are not intentional evildoers.” -Marcus Aurelius

“Man is born gentle and supple. At death, his body is brittle and hard. Living plants are tender, and filled with life-giving sap, but at their death they are withered and dry. The stiff, the hard, and brittle are harbingers of death, and gentleness and yielding are the signs of that which lives. The warrior who is inflexible condemns himself to death, and the tree is easily broken, which ever refuses to yield. Thus the hard and brittle will surely fall, and the soft and supple will overcome.“

—Lao Tzu

L’Albatros (The Albatross) by Charles Baudelaire

Souvent, pour s’amuser, les hommes d’équipage
Prennent des albatros, vastes oiseaux des mers,
Qui suivent, indolents compagnons de voyage,
Le navire glissant sur les gouffres amers.

À peine les ont-ils déposés sur les planches,
Que ces rois de l’azur, maladroits et honteux,
Laissent piteusement leurs grandes ailes blanches
Comme des avirons traîner à côté d’eux.

Ce voyageur ailé, comme il est gauche et veule!
Lui, naguère si beau, qu’il est comique et laid!
L’un agace son bec avec un brûle-gueule,
L’autre mime, en boitant, l’infirme qui volait!

Le Poète est semblable au prince des nuées
Qui hante la tempête et se rit de l’archer;
Exilé sur le sol au milieu des huées,
Ses ailes de géant l’empêchent de marcher.