Best 642 quotes in «existentialism quotes» category

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    I’m an eunuch’s dick.

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    înainte chiar de a afla vreun răspuns satisfăcător, continuase Ştefan, şi numai prin faptul că a fost rostită „întrebarea justă" regenerează şi fertilizează; şi nu numai fiinţa omenească, ci întreg Cosmosul. Ghicesc în acest simbolism solidaritatea omului cu Firea întreagă; întreaga viaţă cosmică suferă şi se ofileşte prin nepăsarea omului faţă de problemele centrale. Uitând să ne punem întrebarea justă, pierzându-ne timpul cu futilităţi sau întrebări frivole, ne omoram nu numai pe noi, ci omoram prin moarte lentă şi sterilizare o părticică din Cosmos.

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    In any case, there was only one tunnel, dark and lonely, mine, the tunnel in which I had spent my childhood, my youth, my whole life. And in one of those transparent lengths of the stone wall I had seen this girl and had gullibly believed that she was traveling another tunnel parallel to mine, when in reality she belonged to the broad world, to the world without confines of those who do not live in tunnels; and perhaps she had peeped into one of my strange windows out of curiosity and had caught a glimpse of my doomed loneliness, or her fancy had been intrigued by the mute language, the clue of my painting. And then, while I advanced always along my corridor, she lived her normal life outside, the exciting life of those people who live outside, that strange, absurd life in which there are dances and parties and gaiety and frivolity. And it happened at times that when I walked by one of my windows she was waiting for me, silent and longing (why was she waiting for me? why silent and longing?); but other times she did not get there on time, or she forgot about this poor creature hemmed in, and then I, with my face pressed against the glass wall, could see her in the distance, smiling or dancing carefree, or, what was worse, I could not see her at all and I imagined her in inaccessible or vile places. And then I felt my destiny a far lonelier one than I had imagined.

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    In a single wave of meaning the triumphant purity of being.

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    In existential mathematics that experience takes the form of two basic equations: The degree of slowness is directly proportional to the intensity of memory; the degree of speed is directly proportional to the intensity of forgetting.

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    Influence is like the tide. Sometimes it goes, sometimes, however, it comes.

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    Information paints no picture, sings no song, and writes no poem.

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    In his embryonic form, as the Outsider, he does not know himself well enough to understand the driving force behind his feelings. That is why his chief concern is with thinking, not with doing.

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    Innumerable arcs intersect and scatter into a vast indefinite sea.

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    In life, we need to go through a naked tree season in order to turn nothingness into meaning.

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    In its knowledge, the god would understand the necessity for that which lies outside itself, beyond its direct control. In that tension meaning will be found. In that struggle value is born. If it suits you and your kind, Destriant, fill the ether with gods, goddesses, First Heroes, spirits and demons. Kneel to one or many, but never—never, Kalyth—hold to a belief that but one god exists, that all that is resides within that god. Should you hold such a belief, then by every path of reasoning that follows, you cannot but conclude that your one god is cursed, a thing of impossible aspirations and deafening injustice, whimsical in its cruelty, blind to mercy and devoid of pity. Do not misunderstand me. Choose to live within one god as you like, but in so doing be certain to acknowledge that there is an “other”, an existence beyond your god. And if your god has a face, then so too does that other. In such comprehension, Destriant, will you come to grasp the freedom that lies at the heart of all life; that choice is the singular moral act and all one chooses can only be considered in a moral context if that choice is free.

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    In other words, where we are is vital to who we are.

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    I now knew that life had something profound in store for everyone, and I softly whispered farewell as I felt the sea claiming me, as it did her, as it will eventually claim everything.

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    In the silence, in the darkness of solitude, our thoughts become the monsters that torment us like little children in the night. I cannot tell myself this is a nightmare. O heaven high above me, how I wish…wish I were crazy, safe in some asylum, in a straightjacket…how I wish this were all made up like a terrible dream…all to be awoken from with the swallowing of a little red and green pill. But it is happening and no matter how hard I scratch and bite my flesh I will not wake up. Silence. Wer ist das? (The sound of breath, it takes me a minute to realize that it is mine own). Strange, but even then I do not know who that is.

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    İnsan böyledir, aziz bayım, iki yüzü vardır onun: Kendini sevmeden sevemez.

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    In some remote corner of the universe, poured out and glittering in innumerable solar systems, there once was a star on which clever animals invented knowledge. That was the haughtiest and most mendacious minute of "world history"- yet only a minute. After nature had drawn a few breaths the star grew cold, and the clever animals had to die.

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    In the face of an obstacle which it is impossible to overcome, stubbornness is stupid. If I persist in beating my fist against a stone wall, my freedom exhausts itself in this useless gesture without succeeding in giving itself a content. It debases itself in a vain contingency. Yet, there is hardly a sadder virtue than resignation. It transforms into phantoms and contingent reveries projects which had at the beginning been set up as will and freedom. A young man has hoped for a happy or useful or glorious life. If the man he has become looks upon these miscarried attempts of his adolescence with disillusioned indifference, there they are, forever frozen in the dead past. When an effort fails, one declares bitterly that he has lost time and wasted his powers. The failure condemns that whole part of ourselves which we had engaged in the effort. It was to escape this dilemma that the Stoics preached indifference. We could indeed assert our freedom against all constraint if we agreed to renounce the particularity of our projects. If a door refuses to open, let us accept not opening it and there we are free. But by doing that, one manages only to save an abstract notion of freedom. It is emptied of all content and all truth. The power of man ceases to be limited because it is annulled. It is the particularity of the project which determines the limitation of the power, but it is also what gives the project its content and permits it to be set up. There are people who are filled with such horror at the idea of a defeat that they keep themselves from ever doing anything. But no one would dream of considering this gloomy passivity as the triumph of freedom

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    In the presence of Esch, values have hidden their faces. Order, loyalty, sacrifice—he cherishes all these words, but exactly what do they represent? Sacrifice for what? Demand what sort of order? He doesn't know. If a value has lost its concrete content, what is left of it? A mere empty form; an imperative that goes unheeded and, all the more furious, demands to be heard and obeyed. The less Esch knows what he wants, the more furiously he wants it. Esch: the fanaticism of the era with no God. Because all values have hidden their faces, anything can be considered a value. Justice, order—Esch seeks them now in the trade union struggle, then in religion; today in police power, tomorrow in the mirage of America, where he dreams of emigrating. He could be a terrorist or a repentant terrorist turning in his comrades, or a party militant or a cult member a kamikaze prepared to sacrifice his life. All the passions rampaging through the bloody history of our time are taken up, unmasked, and terrifyingly displayed in Esch's modest adventure.

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    In the religious myths, the creative will appears personified in God, and man already feels himself guilty when he assumes himself to be like God, that is, to ascribe this will to himself. In the heroic myths on the contrary, man appears as himself, creative and guilt for his suffering and fall is ascribed to God, that is, to his own will. Both are only extreme reaction phenomena of man wavering between his Godlikeness and his nothingness, whose will is awakened to the knowledge of its power and whose consciousness is aroused to terror before it.

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    i once heard the survivors of a colony of ants that had been partially obliterated by a cow s foot seriously debating the intention of the gods towards their civilization

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    İnsanın kendi yüzünü anlayabilmesi belki de elinde değil. Belki de tek başıma yaşadığım için böyle oluyor. Topluluk içinde yaşayanlar, kendilerini, arkadaşlarına nasıl görünüyorlarsa aynalarda tıpkı öyle görmeyi öğrenmişlerdir. Benim arkadaşım yok. Tenimin bunca çıplak olması acaba bu yüzden mi? Buna insansız... evet insansız doğa denilebilir.

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    In the quantum multiverse, every choice, every decision you've ever and never made exists in an unimaginably vast ensemble of parallel universes.

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    In the real journey of life, it is not what you do; it is what you don't do that matters the most.

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    In this Idea we find the expression of human interest (of wanting things to be the way one wishes them to be), rather than any clear exegesis into the ideal nature of the Idea. Things may very well be different. What one may signify may not be the same as another signifies (Saussure). We may hope that what we translate is the same idea, the same signification as the author intended, but we have no way of knowing to be sure, we are beyond that moment of signification and now in a moment of decision. There is no guarantee that what we choose is what the author intended (Derrida). We exist potentially only within a world of resemblances and relations; in actuality the originals lose themselves in the act. In this respect Post-Modernism is valid.

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    In trying to explain life we have reduced it to a series of chemical reactions, whether it be the burning of glucose in mitochondria to create energy, or the folding of proteins to make bile, or pollen, or blood. Zoom out to where we perceive things, the titanic mathematics of it all is silent. We have twisted our thoughts and feelings into all sorts of psychological origami about whether these things are a result of evolution, intelligent design, or creation ex nihilo, and for all we know, our little planet is the only place that holds all of this wonder in a void that is too staggeringly huge to conceive.

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    I really didn’t have a good vice. Liquor in moderate quantities. Love on the installment plan. Wouldn’t it be nice if I could really cultivate some impressive vice? Some excessive cruelty or some astonishing sacrifice.

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    I really should have died then, Tsukuru often told himself. Then this world, the one in the here and now, wouldn't exist. It was a captivating, bewitching thought. The present world wouldn't exist, and reality would no longer be real. As far as this world was concerned, he would simply no longer exist—just as this world would no longer exist for him.

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    I relish my life. It’s the one I have. It’s difficult, beautiful, painful, full of laughter, passing strange. Whatever else it is, whatever it brings – it’s mine.

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    I say, we live on, though I am wrong, this is what I say. In the past, present, future, we live on as if in one time. You can never stop the past from happening, and it has happened , and will continue to happen. This is the truth, I think I know, along with the two other things I do know. I exist. I want to kiss you. And also this: each day, as we go, we will always be as young as we can be.

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    I shall be here tomorrow, as I am every evening, and I’ll be pleased to accept your invitation.

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    I see the insipid flesh blossoming and palpitating with abandon.

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    Is it murder to kill a man if the man never existed? To the man it is.

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    I speak of the laws man has made, to make everyone lawful.

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    I spent the afternoon musing on Life. If you come to think of it, what a queer thing Life is! So unlike anything else, don't you know, if you see what I mean.

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    I started out a human being. But pretty much had all the humanity wrung out of me after passing the Bar and practicing law for ten years. Not sure what I am now.

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    I spent most the day sleeping…or night…I feel a little better. I know that there should be no more walks outside. But really… I destroyed the tomb of shit. I dug the rat out and held its putrid body close to mine, and I cried, and as I cried I held tighter and tighter till the rat and me were one. And as I cried I whispered, ‘Don’t leave me Mommy! Don’t leave! Hold me please!’ And I almost thought I could hear her whispering back, from somewhere deep within my head. And as we held each other I forgot about all this crap I was buried in…I too was like this rat, we were both dead only I still awaited to be rescued from my grave of shit. But in this moment I was rescued by some long lost memory… A child’s joys. A child’s fears. Do we ever grow out of them?

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    Is the ash in trees, babies, flowers, and visions of God better than the visions themselves? Then you think, none of this is tangible or concrete. So you have another cigarette and think about the (not one) but many ghosts you keep tucked away, under sheets, under beds, in notes, within other ghosts.

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    Is this neuro-bot really supposed to be her, this creature, this thing, compiled of the ghosts of human data, the replicas of their past?

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    I think Dostoevsky was right, that every human being must have a point at which he stands against the culture, where he says, this is me and the damned world can go to hell.

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    I tell the squad a joke: "Stop me if you're heard this. There was a Marine of nuts and bolts, half robot--weird but true--whose every move was cut from pain as though from stone. His stoney little hide had been crushed and broken. But he just laughed and said, 'I've been crushed and broken before.' And sure enough, he had the heart of a bear. His heart functioned for weeks after it had been diagnosed by doctors. His heart weighed half a pound. His heart pumped seven hundred thousand gallons of warm blood through one hundred thousand miles of veins, working hard--hard enough in twelve hours to lift one sixty-five ton boxcar one foot off the deck. He said. The world would not waste the heart of a bear, he said. On his clean blue pajamas many medals hung. He was a walking word of history, in the shop for a few repairs. He took it on the chin and was good. One night in Japan his life came out of his body--black--like a question mark. If you can keep your head while others are losing theirs perhaps you have misjudged the situation. Stop me if you've heard this...

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    the path your life is stuck on and be free It's a dark whisper calling to me. But I'm not brave enough to listen. I'm old enough to know I don't have any special talents. So no matter how depressing... I have to suck it up... And live the life I have.

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    I thought of the fate of Descartes’ famous formulation: man as ‘master and proprietor of nature.’ Having brought off miracles in science and technology, this ‘master and proprietor’ is suddenly realizing that he owns nothing and is master neither of nature (it is vanishing, little by little, from the planet), nor of History (it has escaped him), nor of himself (he is led by the irrational forces of his soul). But if God is gone and man is no longer master, then who is master? The planet is moving through the void without any master. There it is, the unbearable lightness of being.

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    It is amusing, is it not, to want to be both found and forgotten at the same time?

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    I thought of the opera ‘Madama Butterfly’ that I had just been listening to and saw myself as that sailor in that opera who was born into beauty but left it to chase his American dream. I had forgotten my heart, and the home in which it beat, and now as I held a life, tightly in my arms, in my eyes, that had wounded itself and was now about to die. Neglect. The burning furnace. I realized that I was never to see her, Life, again and that throughout the years when she had been there I hath forsaken thee lost in money, in opinion in short, an exchange in which we trade the means for the end (happiness), but never realize until the end how much we have truly lost and I. I was at the end of my road, or at least this road. Regret. But now was not the time. She was still here; breathing with the wind, beating against my face that licked with the cool, cool presence. There was still what was, what is, and for but a short time what was still to be. I had but a few moments to make up for an entire life that I had lost.

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    It is a matter of living in that state of the absurd I know on what it is founded, this mind and this world straining against each other without being able to embrace each other. I ask for the rule— of life of that state, and what I am offered neglects its basis, negates one of the terms of the painful opposition, demands of me a resignation. I ask what is involved in the condition I recognize as mine; I know it implies obscurity and ignorance; and I am assured that this ignorance explains everything and that this darkness is my light.

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    It is good to pray even if you do not believe in God.

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    It is possible that some people are sorry for me, but I am not aware of it.

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    It is now my intention to draw out from the story of Abraham the dialectical consequences inherent in it, expressing them in the form of problemata , in order to see what a tremendous paradox faith is, a paradox which is capable of transforming a murder into a holy act well-pleasing to God, a paradox which gives Isaac back to Abraham, which no thought can master, because faith begins precisely there where thinking leaves off.

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    It is our goal and new poetics to disappear. We will not disappear into nothingness; we will disappear into everything. As we resist and resist hard, history will remember us.

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    It is the mark of a common mind to think that everything is for him significant. In a respect he is right, in that moment everything (in terms of the intentionality of his or her consciousness) is significant. The mark of this type of man is that he never looks beyond the moment. If he did he would drown in the sea of insignificance, in the realization that what is, becomes was, and what was no longer has any significance (except for in relation), and what is, given enough time, becomes what was, that is, no more (hence the relation loses significance). If he could realize death he would realize [1.6. Death makes everything insignificant]. He would realize that he is no different than the countless number of people that have come and gone before him, who found their significance, much as he did, in bodily and social pleasures. He would realize this moment which has been given had for him its significance not in its primacy (in the moment itself) but rather in its secondary qualities, that is, the relations to those social and bodily pleasures which he has strived for, he would realize that the moment, which is most significant because it is primary (all else is secondary from it) had been forgotten, and that the life he had been living he had not been living at all. He would realize that what he had hitherto found significant was, given enough time, truly insignificant, and what had always seemed insignificant, the moment itself, was the most significant, simply because without it, there would be nothing. A man’s significance lies in truly living in his moment.

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