I have always believed, and I still believe, that whatever good or bad fortune may come our way we can always give it meaning and transform it into something of value.
Solitude is independence.
Our mind is capable of passing beyond the dividing line we have drawn for it. Beyond the pairs of opposites of which the world consists, other, new insights begin.
Happiness is a how; not a what. A talent, not an object.
The truth is lived, not taught.
If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is part of yourself. What isn't part of ourselves doesn't disturb us.
Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go.
The call of death is a call of love. Death can be sweet if we answer it in the affirmative, if we accept it as one of the great eternal forms of life and transformation.
The bird fights its way out of the egg. The egg is the world. Whoever will be born must destroy a world.
Meaning and reality were not hidden somewhere behind things, they were in them, in all of them.
Writing is good, thinking is better. Cleverness is good, patience is better.
Wisdom is nothing but a preparation of the soul, a capacity, a secret art of thinking, feeling and breathing thoughts of unity at every moment of life.
One never reaches home, but wherever friendly paths intersect the whole world looks like home for a time.
Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom. One can find it, live it, be fortified by it, do wonders through it, but one cannot communicate and teach it.
To study history means submitting to chaos and nevertheless retaining faith in order and meaning.
Everything becomes a little different as soon as it is spoken out loud.
It is not our purpose to become each other; it is to recognize each other, to learn to see the other and honor him for what he is.
Eternity is a mere moment, just long enough for a joke.
When trying to remember my share in the glow of the eternal present, in the smile of God, I return to my childhood, too, for that is where the most significant discoveries turn up.
When dealing with the insane, the best method is to pretend to be sane.
What could I say to you that would be of value, except that perhaps you seek too much, that as a result of your seeking you cannot find.
Only the ideas that we really live have any value.
There's no reality except the one contained within us. That's why so many people live an unreal life. They take images outside them for reality and never allow the world within them to assert itself.
You are only afraid if you are not in harmony with yourself. People are afraid because they have never owned up to themselves.
This happiness consisted of nothing else but the harmony of the few things around me with my own existence, a feeling of contentment and well-being that needed no changes and no intensification.
If time is not real, then the dividing line between this world and eternity, between suffering and bliss, between good and evil, is also an illusion.
As a body everyone is single, as a soul never.
The world is not imperfect or slowly evolving along a path to perfection. No, it is perfect at every moment, every sin already carries grace in it.
People with courage and character always seem sinister to the rest.
Without words, without writing and without books there would be no history, there could be no concept of humanity.
There is, so I believe, in the essence of everything, something that we cannot call learning. There is, my friend, only a knowledge - that is everywhere.
To be able to throw one's self away for the sake of a moment, to be able to sacrifice years for a woman's smile - that is happiness.
In each individual the spirit is made flesh, in each one the whole of creation suffers, in each one a Savior is crucified.
All men are prepared to accomplish the incredible if their ideals are threatened.
It was morning; through the high window I saw the pure, bright blue of the sky as it hovered cheerfully over the long roofs of the neighboring houses. It too seemed full of joy, as if it had special plans, and had put on its finest clothes for the occasion.
The bourgeois prefers comfort to pleasure, convenience to liberty, and a pleasant temperature to the deathly inner consuming fire.
Within us there is someone who knows everything, wills everything, does everything better than we ourselves.
Perhaps people like us cannot love. Ordinary people can - that is their secret.
Words do not express thoughts very well. They always become a little different immediately after they are expressed, a little distorted, a little foolish.
It is not Kafka's fault that his wonderful writings have lately turned into a fad, and are read by people who have neither the ability nor the desire to absorb literature.
But your questions, which are unanswerable without exception, all spring from the same erroneous thinking.
What constitutes a real, live human being is more of a mystery than ever these days, and men each one of whom is a valuable, unique experiment on the part of nature are shot down wholesale.
Those who cannot think or take responsibility for themselves need, and clamor for, a leader.
Seeking means: to have a goal; but finding means: to be free, to be receptive, to have no goal.
It was as if all of the happiness, all of the magic of this blissful hour had flowed together into these stirring, bittersweet tones and flowed away, becoming temporal and transitory once more.
The marvel of the Bhagavad-Gita is its truly beautiful revelation of life's wisdom which enables philosophy to blossom into religion.
Every man is more than just himself; he also represents the unique, the very special and always significant and remarkable point at which the world's phenomena intersect, only once in this way, and never again.
Love of God is not always the same as love of good.
If a man has nothing to eat, fasting is the most intelligent thing he can do.
For me, however, that beloved, glowing little word happiness has become associated with everything I have felt since childhood upon hearing the sound of the word itself.
It is possible for one never to transgress a single law and still be a bastard.
Until 1914 I loved to travel; I often went to Italy and once spent a few months in India. Since then I have almost entirely abandoned travelling, and I have not been outside of Switzerland for over ten years.
Nevertheless, whether in occurrences lasting days, hours or mere minutes at a time, I have experienced happiness often, and have had brief encounters with it in my later years, even in old age.
I was out of my bed in one second, trembling with excitement, and I dashed to the door and into the adjoining room, where I could watch the streets below from the windows.
Among the letters my readers write me, there is a certain category which is continuously growing, and which I see as a symptom of the increasing intellectualization of the relationship between readers and literature.
In Germany I have been acknowledged again since the fall of Hitler, but my works, partly suppressed by the Nazis and partly destroyed by the war; have not yet been republished there.
It was still quiet in the house, and not a sound was heard from outside, either. Were it not for this silence, my reverie would probably have been disrupted by reminders of daily duties, of getting up and going to school.