Best 209 of Nihilism quotes - MyQuotes
The rather difficult antagonists towards the Church consist not nearly of the cruel and heartless, nihilistic intellectuals who hate God and humanity, but the well-meaning spirits who for the most part lack an understanding of the Spirit.
Emil M. Cioran
A little more fervor in my nihilism and I might — gainsaying everything — shake off my doubts and triumph over them. But I have only the taste of negation, not its grace.
The melancholy of the antique world seems to me more profound than that of the moderns, all of whom more or less imply that beyond the dark void lies immortality. But for the ancients that ‘black hole’ is infinity itself; their dreams loom and vanish against a background of immutable ebony. No crying out, no convulsions—nothing but the fixity of the pensive gaze. With the gods gone, and Christ not yet come, there was a unique moment, from Cicero to Marcus Aurelius, when man stood alone. Nowhere else do I find that particular grandeur.
All suffer and none should have to. But why not? If suffering makes life seem more real or more abstract, both circumstances are infinitely more bearable than the disturbing reality of mundane work-to-live-then-die-bored life.
T. J. Kirk
So, I found my refuge in art. I could find no truth in art, but I was obsessed with the beauty of its lies. The world was full of shit in all the wrong ways, but in art I could find whatever line of bullshit most satisfied me. And unlike religion, it didn’t require the gullibility to actually fall for it, only the ability to entertain it, and to be entertained by it.
He wrote arguments for and against life; he began to think the slowest and most painful form of suicide was living, running the whole decathlon of suffering, no breather or bottled water. Fear of dying was irrational. Death was utilitarian. Decrease in net resource consumption and planetary suffering. Increase in net comedy. There was no afterlife but there was a right-before-death, and medical research said it was loopy and nice, all white lights and gentle voices. With booze it wasn't even scary. Some people with terrible lives didn't kill themselves, but that didn't mean they shouldn't. Most people weren't alive and didn't mind. You couldn't regret it.
Maybe I should have gone into politics. If you were a political activist, election season brought moments of intensity, whichever side you were on, and meanwhile here I was inarguably withering away,
Essentially that which is only matter, and the sciences that can, through verifiable methods, explore that which we know exists, through the means of...you know, touching, tasting, seeing, and so on...as well as using other instrumentation and so on...is very useful. The question winds up being: ultimately one of: 'Is that all there is?' And going and saying there wasn't even an understanding of matter as we understand it today prior to [...] about the time of Descartes...um, I don't know if the historical argument's the best one to make in that case. But one thing I can say is that thinking that all that exists is that which we can perceive with the five senses is in no way provable –and then if we talk about, 'Well, what is the essence of something?', then we run into a whole other mess. But if we're talking in the context of modernism, where people have gone and become wholly materialistic, the answers become incredibly simple. Incredibly simplistic. And ultimately, I'm not convinced of their accuracy; not only am I not convinced of their accuracy, but I'm not convinced that it's good for humankind in general: because ultimately we're going to wind up killing ourselves off, if all we believe in is that which is material.
Both Bratva and thieves in law would like to call themselves nihilists and anarchists because they don’t support the established government, but they govern nonetheless, and you can’t be an anarchist unless you follow its rule. Crime and anarchy are no more synonymous than nihilism and existentialism, or fatalism and determinism; so many isms there was bound to be a schism.
I often wonder and imagine What lies just beyond the fringe Of the human experience; What is it that we do not see?
Nihilism has no substance. There is no such thing as nothingness, and zero does not exist. Everything is something. Nothing is nothing.
How stupid these nihilists are! Because I have to die someday, does that mean I shouldn't enjoy my life now?
Crazed with helplessness, I cursed God and wept, wondering if He wept also. But then, what use are His tears, if His help was denied me?
Maybe we really are made of the same clay, maybe we really are condemned, blameless, to the same, identical mediocrity.
[...]when all of them have gone your way, humanity will be buried, and on its tomb I, sole master of myself at last, I, heir to all the human race, will shout with laughter.” And so, among the ruins of the world, the desolate laughter of the individual-king illustrates the last victory of the spirit of rebellion. But at this extremity nothing else is possible but death or resurrection. Stirner, and with him all the nihilist rebels, rush to the utmost limits, drunk with destruction.
It's better to be a total nihilist than to have beliefs that set you apart from other people.
Emile M. Cioran
There is no other world. Nor even this one. What, then, is there? The inner smile provoked in us by the patent nonexistence of both.
Simone De Beauvoir
If I were to share Jaques' existence I would find it hard to hold my own against him, for already I found his nihilism contagious.
P. D. James
I mean, when a chap keeps on saying that life isn't worth living you take it that he's just stating the obvious. When he backs it up with action you begin to wonder if there wasn't more to him than you thought.
But why should a religious person be interested in a work like Heidegger's that many regard as the epitome of nihilism? For a start, because Heidegger forces us in a way that few philosophers do to really think through the seriousness and all-encompassing nature of our mortality.
In a society without anguish, it is easy to ignore death,” says one of them. However, and this is the real condemnation of our society, the anguish of death is a luxury that is felt far more by the idler than by the worker, who is stifled by his own occupation. But every kind of socialism is Utopian, most of all scientific socialism. Utopia replaces God by the future. Then it proceeds to identify the future with ethics; the only values are those which serve this particular future. For that reason Utopias have almost always been coercive and authoritarian. Marx, in so far as he is a Utopian, does not differ from his frightening predecessors, and one part of his teaching more than justifies his successors.
O Que é o Niilismo para mim? O Niilismo, é o nada; É Como ir a maior praia do mundo se ajoelhar e com uma pequena pinça pegar um único grão de areia, colocar esse grão na palma das mãos. Ir até o mar, e então soltar o grão olhar para trás e perceber a grande diferença que aquele pequeno grão de areia fez. Isso é o Niilismo, e nós somos o grão de areia.
Because to exist meant making copies and copies of your own DNA with less and less accuracy with time, to lose the spring in your skin, to inhale a poisonous gas that both allowed your next breath and exploded you from the inside at an insidiously slow pace. To exist was to give way to entropy. To live, in no uncertain terms, was to die.
Break, beat up everything, beat and destroy! Everything that's being broken is rubbish and has no right to life! What survives is good
One cannot be a part-time nihilist.
I got to tell you, I think (deifying artists) was a huge error. You know, I think that allowing somebody…to believe that he or she is…the source of all divine, creative, unknowable, eternal mystery is just a smidge too much responsibility to put on one fragile, human psyche. It’s like asking somebody to swallow the sun. It just completely warps and distorts egos, and it creates all these unmanageable expectations about performance. And I think the pressure of that has been killing off our artists for the last 500 years.
the problem is not suffering itself or oblivion itself but the depraved meaninglessness of these things, the absolutely inhuman nihilism of suffering.
…ours is a world about which we pretend to have more and more information but which seems to us increasingly devoid of meaning.
I decided to give up meaningless sex, but then I remembered that everything is meaningless.
Many were incarcerated with the aberrant prosaic possibilities of ataraxia. Only the mentally sensitive few were cognizant of the nuisance to serenity and an actuality that lacked a balance betwixt havoc and sangfroid. The intellectual capabilities of the excellent idiosyncratic talents of a man with an agog outlook for de minimis fringe entities had left the portal ajar for the enlightened few, to get a glimpse of the obsecure reality that most had decided to claim socratic ignorance to evade inquiries.
Simone De Beauvoir
Yet I loathe the thought of annihilating myself quite as much now as I ever did. I think with sadness of all the books I’ve read, all the places I’ve seen, all the knowledge I’ve amassed and that will be no more. All the music, all the paintings, all the culture, so many places: and suddenly nothing. ... If it had at least enriched the earth; if it had given birth to… what? A hill? A rocket? But no. Nothing will have taken place. I can still see the hedge of hazel trees flurried by the wind and the promises with which I fed my beating heart while I stood gazing at the gold-mine at my feet: a whole life to live. The promises have all been kept. And yet, turning an incredulous gaze towards that young and credulous girl, I realise with stupor how much I was gypped.
The attack against dogmas as such, therefore, strongly resembles the struggle against the general legal foundations of a state, and , as the latter would end in a total anarchy of the state, the former would end in a worthless religious nihilism.
Don't most astrophysicists now predict some "end of the line" - an end to it all? Not just the death of things, but the annihilation of everything. Some great contraction, or collapse. Or, perhaps, some vast dissipation into eternal emptiness. Maybe it's all swallowed up by an immense black hole, which then swallows itself. But, whatever the case, their extinction is inevitable and absolute. So complete as to erase any and all evidence that this reality - this existence - ever took place. So complete that, perhaps, for all intents and purposes, it never really did. (attrib: F.L. Vanderson)
But all this, all this shift and change, thought Bellamy, is part of the vast lie which surrounds me and wherein I move from one fantasy to another. I wanted to escape to solitude and darkness in a holy place, but the dark is just the old dark of meaninglessness and falsehood, which separates me from my friends and from the real world where people love and help each other.
Chasms are deceived by rumors of their depth.
Pour être connu, il suffit en somme de tuer sa concierge.
You have to take an interest in something in life, I told myself. I wondered what could interest me, now that I was finished with love. I could take a course in wine tasting, maybe, or start collecting model aeroplanes.
Say what you want about the deaf.
… the major enemy of black survival in America has been and is neither oppression nor exploitation but rather the nihilistic threat—that is, loss of hope and absence of meaning. For as long as hope remains and meaning is preserved, the possibility of overcoming oppression stays alive. The self-fulfilling prophecy of the nihilistic threat is that without hope there can be no future, that without meaning there can be no struggle.
Quentin S. Crisp
The famous atheist Christopher Hitchens once declared that ‘You’re expelled from your mother’s uterus as if shot from a cannon, towards a barn door studded with old nail files and rusty hooks.’ Presumably that was what he had in mind when conceiving his three children.
Time is the cruelest of physicians, healing All wounds, but always slowly, looping A surgical needle through the mind’s flesh, experiencing Torment again over again, repeating Until anesthetics bring an end to feeling.
It's still strange.
If you want to scare people, you talk about evil.
By engaging with film illusions both actively and passively – as I attempt to do in this book – we strengthen the capacity of our minds to reason, imagine and think through ideas in a way unrestrained by some static conception of objective Truth. In so doing, the nihilistic gap existing between the real world and the whole variety of film worlds perhaps widens, but it also serves to offer a free, open space into which our interpretations may spill, mingle and propagate in uninhibited, nihilistic liberty.
This rock has seen billions of years of living organisms and will see many more once we die and turn to dirt. Our life is but one tiny, brief, insignificant piece of this vast universe. So, why, the nihilist argues, do people really think that it is important to be a “good person”, get good grades, or get a good job? What difference could that possibly make to anything? Nihilism is an honest evaluation of what a universe without God would look like. Nietzsche was right about that. Where he went wrong was in thinking this was true of the actual universe.
Our planet is a freak which we shall destroy by our own wicked senseless activities in the next century. Our history will very soon come to an end. Now that God is dead, we are at last presented with the truth, yes, the truth remains, but it is on a short lead. Anyway, we are nothing and it matters not what we do.
You see—I hope you never get there yourself—but some of us get to the point in life where we realise that nothing matters. Nothing fucking matters.
People spent their lives searching for something beyond the simple friction of skin on skin, but there was nothing. The void between two people could never be closed, and in trying to close it, they would only learn everything that was to be despised in the other.
A pessimist is a liar, unless he destroys himself, and no less of a hypocrite than a priest who defiles the holy.
There must be no final truths; only burning questions.