Talent hits a target no one else can hit. Genius hits a target no one else can see.
Compassion is the basis of morality.
We should comport ourselves with the masterpieces of art as with exalted personages - stand quietly before them and wait till they speak to us.
Any book which is at all important should be re-read immediately.
Anti-intellectualism has long been the anti-Semitism of the business man.
The fly ought to be used as the symbol of impertinence and audacity, for whilst all other animals shun man more than anything else, and run away even before he comes near them, the fly lights upon his very nose.
The happiness of any given life is to be measured not by its joys and pleasures, but by the extent to which it has been free from suffering, from positive evil.
I observed once to Goethe ... that when a friend is with us we do not think the same of him as when he is away. He replied, "Yes! because the absent friend is yourself, and he exists only in your head; whereas the friend who is present has an individuality of his own, and moves according to laws of his own, which cannot always be in accordance with those which you form for yourself."
Happiness belongs to those who are sufficient unto themselves. For all external sources of happiness and pleasure are, by their very nature, highly uncertain, precarious, ephemeral and subject to chance.
Money is human happiness in the abstract; he, then, who is no longer capable of enjoying human happiness in the concrete devotes himself utterly to money.
The closing years of life are like the end of a masquerade party, when the masks are dropped.
Money is human happiness in the abstract.
To overcome difficulties is to experience the full delight of existence.
It is in trifles, and when he is off his guard, that a man best shows his character.
Every truth passes through three stages before it is recognized. In the first it is ridiculed, in the second it is opposed, in the third it is regarded as self-evident.
In early youth, as we contemplate our coming life, we are like children in a theatre before the curtain is raised, sitting there in high spirits and eagerly waiting for the play to begin.
What disturbs and depresses young people is the hunt for happiness on the firm assumption that it must be met with in life. From this arises constantly deluded hope and so also dissatisfaction. Deceptive images of a vague happiness hover before us in our dreams, and we search in vain for their original. Much would have been gained if, through timely advice and instruction, young people could have had eradicated from their minds the erroneous notion that the world has a great deal to offer them.
If children were brought into the world by an act of pure reason alone, would the human race continue to exist? Would not a man rather have so much sympathy with the coming generation as to spare it the burden of existence, or at any rate not take it upon himself to impose that burden upon it in cold blood?
We can regard our life as a uselessly disturbing episode in the blissful repose of nothingness.
Life swings like a pendulum backward and forward between pain and boredom.