Fifty Quotes by Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Fifty Quotes by Ralph Waldo Emerson

“The man who renounces himself, comes to himself.”


“The imitator dooms himself to hopeless mediocrity. The inventor did it because it was natural to him, and so in him it has a charm. In the imitator something else is natural, and he bereaves himself of his own beauty, to come short of another man's.”


“People seem not to see that their opinion of the world is also a confession of character.”


“What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have yet to be discovered.”


“Literature is the effort of man to indemnify himself for the wrongs of his condition.”


“Leave this hypocritical prating about the masses. Masses are rude, lame, unmade, pernicious in their demands and influence, and need not to be flattered, but to be schooled. I wish not to concede anything to them, but to tame, drill, divide, and break them up, and draw individuals out of them.”


“Respect the child. Be not too much his parent. Trespass not on his solitude.”


“Classics which at home are drowsily read have a strange charm in a country inn, or in the transom of a merchant brig.”


“I find men victims of illusions in all parts oflife. Children, youths, adults and old men, all are led by one bauble or another. Yoganidra, the goddess of illusion, is stronger than the Titans, stronger than Apollo.”


“To different minds, the same world is a hell, and a heaven.”


“I find the Englishman to be him of all men who stands firmest in his shoes. They have in themselves what they value in their horses, — mettle and bottom.”


“When a whole nation is roaring Patriotism at the top of its voice, I am fain to explore the cleanness of its hands and purity of its heart.”


“The Religion that is afraid of science dishonours God and commits suicide. It acknowledges that it is not equal to the whole of truth, that it legislates, tyrannizes over a village of God's empires but is not the immutable universal law.”


“We are always getting ready to live, but never living.”


“A sect or party is an elegant incognito devised to save a man from the vexation of thinking.”


“Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.”


“The best effect of fine persons is felt after we have left their presence.”


“It is easy to live for others; everybody does. I call on you to live for yourselves.”


“Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.”


“The stars awaken a certain reverence, because though always present, they are inaccessible; but all natural objects make a kindred impression, when the mind is open to their influence. Nature never wears a mean appearance.”


“But genius looks forward: the eyes of men are set in his forehead, not in his hindhead: man hopes: genius creates.”


“The world is nothing, the man is all; in yourself is the law of all nature, and you know not yet how a globule of sap ascends; in yourself slumbers the whole of Reason; it is for you to know all, it is for you to dare all.”


“Character is higher than intellect...A great soul will be strong to live, as well as strong to think.”


“We will walk on our own feet; we will work with our own hands; we will speak our own minds...A nation of men will for the first time exist, because each believes himself inspired by the Divine Soul which also inspires all men.”


“Explore, and explore, and explore. Be neither chided nor flattered out of your position of perpetual inquiry. Neither dogmatise yourself, nor accept another's dogmatism. Why should you renounce your right to traverse the star-lit deserts of truth, for the premature comforts of an acre, house, and barn? Truth also has its roof, and bed, and board. Make yourself necessary to the world, and mankind will give you bread, and if not store of it, yet such as shall not take away your property in all men's possessions, in all men's affections, in art, in nature, and in hope.”


“The ancestor of every action is a thought.”


“All our progress is an unfolding, like the vegetable bud. You have first an instinct, then an opinion, then a knowledge, as the plant has root, bud, and fruit. Trust the instinct to the end, though you can render no reason. It is vain to hurry it. By trusting it to the end it shall ripen into truth, and you shall know why you believe.”


“Every revolution was first a thought in one man's mind and when the same thought occurs in another man, it is the key to that era.”


“Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string. Accept the place the divine providence has found for you, the society of your contemporaries, the connection of events. Great men have always done so.”


“It is easy in the world to live after the world's opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.”


“Discontent is the want of self-reliance: it is infirmity of will.”


“Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.”


“Men suffer all their life long, under the foolish superstition that they can be cheated. But it is as impossible for a man to be cheated by any one but himself, as for a thing to be and not to be at the same time.”


“Whoso would be a man, must be a nonconformist. He who would gather immortal palms must not be hindered by the name of goodness, but must explore if it be goodness. Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind. Absolve you to yourself, and you shall have the suffrage of the world.”


“God will not have his work made manifest by cowards”


“I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and the new.”


“Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly, and they will show themselves great.”


“Every violation of truth is not only a sort of suicide in the liar, but is a stab at the health of human society.”


“One man's justice is another's injustice; one man's beauty another's ugliness; one man's wisdom another's folly.”


“Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”


“Nothing astonishes men so much as common sense and plain dealing.”


“Happy is the house that shelters a friend!”


“Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us, or we find it not.”


“The only way to have a friend is to be one.”


“It will never make any difference to a hero what the laws are. His greatness will shine and accomplish itself unto the end, whether they second him or not.”


“To finish the moment, to find the journey's end in every step of the road, to live the greatest number of good hours, is wisdom.”


“The less government we have, the better, — the fewer laws, and the less confided power. The antidote to this abuse of formal Government, is, the influence of private character, the growth of the Individual.”


“The years teach much which the days never know.”


“Let us draw a lesson from nature, which always works by short ways. When the fruit is ripe, it falls.”


“That what we seek we shall find; what we flee from flees from us.”


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