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Philosophy Quotes and Sayings
Quotes about Philosophy

Please enjoy these Philosophy Quotes from the wise, the romantic, and the famous of the past and present.

I never considered a difference of opinion
in politics, in religion, in philosophy,
as cause for withdrawing from a friend.
- Thomas Jefferson

Related topics: Sad Feeling-Down Friendship Relationship

Love does not alter the beloved, it alters itself.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Far from idleness being the root of all evil,
it is rather the only true good.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Face the facts of being what you are,
for that is what changes what you are.
- Soren Kierkegaard

 

At the bottom of enmity between strangers lies indifference.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Life has its own hidden forces which you can only discover by living.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The minority is always stronger than the majority,
because the minority is generally formed by those
who really have an opinion.
- Soren Kierkegaard

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It seems essential, in relationships and all tasks,
that we concentrate only
on what is most significant and important.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom.
- Soren Kierkegaard

People understand me so poorly that they don't even understand
my complaint about them not understanding me.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Faith is the highest passion in a human being.
Many in every generation may not come that far, but none comes further.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Prayer doesn't change God, but changes him who prays
- Soren Kierkegaard

People hardly ever make use of the freedom which they have,
for example, freedom of thought;
instead they demand freedom of speech as a compensation.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Be that self which one truly is.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The tyrant dies and his rule is over,
the martyr dies and his rule begins
- Soren Kierkegaard

During the first period of a man's life
the greatest danger is not to take the risk.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The function of prayer is not to influence God,
but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.
- Soren Kierkegaard

There is nothing with which every man is so afraid
as getting to know how enormously much
he is capable of doing and becoming.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The more a man can forget, the greater the number
of metamorphoses which his life can undergo,
the more he can remember, the more divine his life becomes.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Love is all, it gives all, and it takes all.
- Soren Kierkegaard

A man who as a physical being
is always turned toward the outside,
thinking that his happiness lies outside him,
finally turns inward and
discovers that the source is within him.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Pleasure disappoints, possibility never
- Soren Kierkegaard

Most men pursue pleasure with such breathless haste
that they hurry past it.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The truth is a snare:
you cannot have it, without being caught.
You cannot have the truth
in such a way that you catch it,
but only in such a way that it catches you.
- Soren Kierkegaard

If I am capable of grasping God objectively,
I do not believe, but precisely because
I cannot do this I must believe.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Our life always expresses the result of our dominant thoughts.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Life can only be understood backwards;
but it must be lived forwards.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The highest and most beautiful things in life
are not to be heard about, nor read about, nor seen but,
if one will, are to be lived.
- Soren Kierkegaard

To dare is to lose one's footing momentarily.
Not to dare is to lose oneself.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Never cease loving a person, and never give up hope for him,
for even the prodigal son who had fallen most low,
could still be saved; the bitterest enemy
and also he who was your friend could again be your friend;
love that has grown cold can kindle
- Soren Kierkegaard

Ordinary people seem not to realize
that those who really apply themselves
in the right way to philosophy
are directly and of their own accord
preparing themselves for dying and death.
- Socrates

There is no need for temples,
no need for complicated philosophies.
My brain and my heart are my temples;
my philosophy is kindness.
- Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama

One's philosophy is not best expressed in words;
it is expressed in the choices one makes...
and the choices we make
are ultimately our responsibility.
- Eleanor Roosevelt

The self-assured believer is a greater sinner
in the eyes of God than the troubled disbeliever
- Soren Kierkegaard

The essence of philosophy is that a man should so live
that his happiness shall depend
as little as possible on external things.
- Epictetus

A discussion of philosophy is like a cat chasing its tail -
it may be an amusing diversion but
it has no chance for a satisfying conclusion.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

God creates out of nothing. Wonderful you say.
Yes, to be sure, but he does what is still more wonderful:
he makes saints out of sinners.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The philosophy of the school room in one generation
will be the philosophy of government in the next.
- Abraham Lincoln

I've developed a new philosophy...
I only dread one day at a time.
- the character Charlie Brown in Charles M. Schulz' Peanuts comic

Where am I? Who am I? How did I come to be here?
What is this thing called the world?
How did I come into the world?
Why was I not consulted?
And If I am compelled to take part in it,
Where is the director? I want to see him.
- Soren Kierkegaard

If I am happy in spite of my deprivations,
if my happiness is so deep that it is a faith,
so thoughtful that it becomes a philosophy of life.
If, in short, I am an optimist,
my testimony to the creed of optimism is worth hearing.
- Helen Keller
...
Helen Keller (1880-1968) overcame being both deaf and blind
to become a famous author, lecturer, and activist
for women's suffrage, workers' rights, and ending war.

I have a simple philosophy: Fill what's empty.
Empty what's full.
Scratch where it itches.
- Alice Roosevelt Longworth

Academe, n.: An ancient school where morality and philosophy were taught.
Academy, n.: A modern school where football is taught.
- Ambrose Bierce

The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's
oldest exercises in moral philosophy;
that is,
the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.
- John Kenneth Galbraith

Do you not know that there comes a midnight hour
when every one has to throw off his mask?
Do you believe that life will always let itself be mocked?
Do you think you can slip away a little before midnight
in order to avoid this? Or are you not terrified by it?
I have seen men in real life who so long deceived others
that at last their true nature could not reveal itself;...
In every man there is something which to a certain degree
prevents him from becoming perfectly transparent to himself;
and this may be the case in so high a degree,
he may be so inexplicably woven into relationships of life
which extend far beyond himself that he almost cannot reveal himself.
But he who cannot reveal himself cannot love,
and he who cannot love is the most unhappy man of all.
- Soren Kierkegaard

All philosophy lies in two words,
sustain and abstain.
- Epictetus

I must study politics and war that my sons may have
liberty to study mathematics and philosophy.
- John Adams

The test of all beliefs is their practical effect in life.
If it be true that optimism compels the world forward,
and pessimism retards it, then it is dangerous to
propagate a pessimistic philosophy.
- Helen Keller

This is my simple religion.
There is no need for temples;
no need for complicated philosophy.
Our own brain, our own heart is our temple;
the philosophy is kindness.
- Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama

Design is not for philosophy it's for life.
- Issey Miyake

Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy.
- Ludwig van Beethoven

My philosophy from day one is that I can sleep better
at night if I can improve an individual's knowledge about food and wine,
and do it on a daily basis.
- Emeril Lagasse

It is so hard to believe because it is so hard to obey.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy,
like art...
It has no survival value; rather it is one of those
things that give value to survival.
- C. S. Lewis

We live in a world in which politics has replaced philosophy.
- Martin L. Gross

People who lean on logic and philosophy and rational
exposition end by starving the best part of the mind.
- William Butler Yeats

Truth always rests with the minority,
and the minority is always stronger than the majority,
because the minority is generally formed by those
who really have an opinion,
while the strength of a majority is illusory,
formed by the gangs who have no opinion -
and who, therefore, in the next instant
(when it is evident that the minority is the stronger)
assume its opinion... while truth again reverts to a new minority.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The Linux philosophy is 'Laugh in the face of danger'.
Oops.
Wrong One.
'Do it yourself'.
Yes, that's it.
- Linus Torvalds

I begin with the principle that all men are bores.
Surely no one will prove himself
so great a bore as to contradict me in this.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Only then, approaching my fortieth birthday,
I made philosophy my life's work.
- Karl Jaspers

The band has a liberal philosophy - that's sort of a given.
- Thurston Moore

The violence had broken out in both sides,
but our philosophy as a party was very,
very clear.
- John Hume

It should now be clear why the method of Philosophy
is so different from that of the natural sciences.
Experiments are not made, because they would be utterly useless.
- Charles D. Broad

I'm a layperson.
I barely got out of high school.
I have no business telling people what to do or my big philosophy on life.
I'm certainly not going to write any sort of memoir.
- Jamie Lee Curtis

Philosophy is the highest music.
- Plato

My personal philosophy is, you can be sure of nothing.
- Robert M. Parker, Jr.

Allow me a bit of philosophy here...
We started tele skiing as a rebellion against rules.
- Paul Parker

Our intonations contain our philosophy of life,
what each of us is constantly telling himself about things.
- Marcel Proust

We are not abandoning our convictions,
our philosophy or traditions, nor do we urge anyone to abandon theirs.
- Mikhail Gorbachev

Philosophy is not a theory but an activity.
- Ludwig Wittgenstein

Philosophy: Unintelligible answers to insoluble problems.
- Henry B. Adams


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- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

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