November 30, 2016

Leo Tolstoy Quotes

“A bad mood is often the reason for blaming others; but very often blaming others causes bad feelings in us: the more we blame others, the worse we feel.”

“A man can live and be healthy without killing animals for food; therefore, if he eats meat, he participates in taking animal life merely for the sake of his appetite. And to act so is immoral.”

“A man is like a fraction whose numerator is what he is and whose denominator is what he thinks of himself. The larger the denominator, the smaller the fraction.”

“A person cries out from pain when he takes up hard physical work after a period of idleness. Any rest from the struggle for spiritual improvement brings the same pain.”

“A truly wise man is always joyful.”

“All happy families resemble one another, each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”

“All violence consists in some people forcing others, under threat of suffering or death, to do what they do not want to do.”

“All, everything that I understand, I understand only because I love.”

“An arrogant person considers himself perfect. This is the chief harm of arrogance. It interferes with a person’s main task in life—becoming a better person.”

“Art is a human activity having for its purpose the transmission to others of the highest and best feelings to which men have risen.”

“Boredom: the desire for desires.”

“Cruel people are busy all the time, as if to find justification for the cruelty of their dealings.”

“Do not fear the lack of knowledge, fear false knowledge.”

“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”

“Government is an association of men who do violence to the rest of us.”

“He stepped down, trying not to look long at her, as if she were the sun, yet he saw her, like the sun, even without looking.”

“I know that most men, including those at ease with problems of the greatest complexity, can seldom accept even the simplest and most obvious truth if it be such as would oblige them to admit the falsity conclusions which they have delighted in explaining to colleagues, which they have proudly taught to others, and which they have woven, thread by thread, into the fabric of their lives.”

“I sit on a man’s back, choking him and making him carry me, and yet assure myself and others that I am very sorry for him and wish to ease his lot by all possible means – except by getting off his back.”

“If a man aspires towards a righteous life, his first act of abstinence is from injury to animals.”

“If we think every word in every holy book is true, then we have created an idol.”

“If you want to be happy, be.”

“It is amazing how complete is the delusion that beauty is goodness.”

“It is not enough to be a hardworking person. Think: what do you work at?”

“It is terrible when people do not know God, but it is worse when people identify as God what is not God.”

“Just as one candle lights another and can light thousands of other candles, so one heart illuminates another heart and can illuminate thousands of other hearts.”

“Life could be limitless joy, if we would only take it for what it is, in the way it is given to us.”

“Love hinders death. Love is life. All, everything that I understand, I understand only because I love. Everything is, everything exists, only because I love. Everything is united by it alone. Love is God, and to die means that I, a particle of love, shall return to the general and eternal source.”

“Music is the shorthand of emotion.”

“Pay bad people with you goodness; fight their hatred with you kindness. Even if you do not achieve victory over other people, you will conquer yourself.”

“People involve themselves in countless activities which they consider to be important, but they forget about one activity which is more important and necessary than any other, and which includes all other things: the improvement of their soul.”

“Perfection is impossible without humility. Why should I strive for perfection, if I am already good enough?”

“Regard the society of women as a necessary unpleasantness of social life, and avoid it as much as possible.”

“Respect was invented to cover the empty place where love should be.”

“Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here.”

“The difference between real material poison and intellectual poison is that most material poison is disgusting to the taste, but intellectual poison, which takes the form of cheap newspapers or bad books, can unfortunately sometimes be attractive.”

“The greater the state, the more wrong and cruel its patriotism, and the greater is the sum of suffering upon which its power is founded.”

“The hero of my tale, whom I love with all the power of my soul, whom I have tried to portray in all his beauty, who has been, is, and will be beautiful, is Truth.”

“The law condemns and punishes only actions within certain definite and narrow limits; it thereby justifies, in a way, all similar actions that lie outside those limits.”

“The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.”

“The most important thing in life is the path to perfection, and what kind of perfection can exist if a person is proud and satisfied with himself?”

“The sole meaning of life is to serve humanity.”

“The strongest of all warriors are these two — Time and Patience.”

“The truth is that the State is a conspiracy designed not only to exploit, but above all to corrupt its citizens… Henceforth, I shall never serve any government anywhere.”

“The two most powerful warriors are patience and time.”

“The worst mistake which was ever made in this world was the separation of political science from ethics.”

“There are two ways not to suffer from poverty. The first is to acquire more wealth. The second is to limit your requirements. The first is not always within our power, but the second is always in our power.”

“There is no greatness where there is no simplicity, goodness and truth.”

“Thou shalt not kill does not apply to murder of one’s own kind only, but to all living beings; and this Commandment was inscribed in the human breast long before it was proclaimed from Sinai.”

“To evoke in oneself a feeling one has experienced, and having evoked it in oneself, then by means of movement, lines, colors, sounds, or forms expressed in words, so to transmit that feeling that others experience the same feeling — this is the activity of art.”

“To evoke in oneself a feeling one has once experienced, and having evoked it in oneself, then by means of movements, lines, colors, sounds, or forms expressed through words, so to convey this so that others may experience the same feeling — this is the activity of art.”

“To feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to visit the ill in the hospital—these are acts of mercy, but there is one charitable deed which cannot be compared to them: to free your brother from misconception.”

“True life is lived when tiny changes occur.”

“Vengeance is mine; I will repay.”

“Very often, all the activity of the human mind is directed not in revealing the truth, but in hiding the truth.”

“We live in this world like a child who enters a room where a clever person is speaking. The child did not hear the beginning of the speech, and he leaves before the end; and there are certain things which he hears but does not understand.”

“When joy disappears, look for your mistake.”

“When you are in company, do not forget what you have found out when you were thinking in solitude; and when you are meditating in solitude, think about what you found out by communicating with other people.”

“When you feel the desire for power, you should stay in solitude for some time.”

“You will die — and it will all be over. You will die and find out everything — or cease asking.”