Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.
Now it is a funny thing about life; if you refuse to accept anything but the best you very often get it.
—W. Somerset Maugham
Our religion is itself profoundly sad—a religion of universal anguish, and one which, because of its very catholicity, grants full liberty to the individual and asks no better than to be celebrated in each man’s own language—so long as he knows anguish and is a painter.
Honor is like an island, rugged and without a landing-place; we can nevermore re-enter when we are once outside of it.
The only true happiness comes from squandering ourselves for a purpose.
—John Mason Brown
The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty; not knowing what comes next.
—Ursula K. Le Guin
Life marks us all down, so it’s just as well that we start out by overpricing ourselves.
It is a fine thing to have ability, but the ability to discover ability in others is the true test.
The mortality of all inanimate things is terrible to me, but that of books most of all.
—William Dean Howells
Remember, you can earn more money, but when time is spent is gone forever.
Our ideals are our better selves.
—Amos Bronson Alcott
In the beginning you must subject yourself to the influence of nature. You must be able to walk firmly on the ground before you start walking of a tightrope.
Stars may be seen from the bottom of a deep well, when they cannot be discerned from the top of a mountain? So are many things learned in adversity which the prosperous man dreams not of?
Common experience shows how much rarer is moral courage than physical bravery. A thousand men will march to the mouth of the cannon where one man will dare espouse an unpopular cause.
If an idiot were to tell you the same story every day for a year, you would end by believing him.
Art is the beautiful way of doing things. Science is the effective way of doing things. Business is the economic way of doing things.
Action and faith enslave thought, both of them in order not be troubled or inconvenienced by reflection, criticism, and doubt.
—Henri Frederic Amiel