I nothing had, and yet enough for youth--Joy in Illusion, ardent thirst for Truth. Give unrestrained, the old emotion, The bliss that touched the verge of pain, The strength of Hate, Love's deep devotion,--O, give me back my youth again!
We often feel that we lack something, and seem to see that very quality in someone else, promptly attributing all our own qualities to him too, and a kind of ideal contentment as well. And so the happy mortal is a model of complete perfection--which we have ourselves created.
How often do I lull my seething blood to rest, for you have never seen anything so unsteady, so uncertain, as this heart.
It's true that nothing in this world makes us so necessary to others as the affection we have for them.
There are but two roads that lead to an important goal and to the doing of great things: strength and perseverance. Strength is the lot of but a few priveledged men; but austere perseverance, harsh and continuous, may be employed by the smallest of us and rarely fails of its purpose, for its silent power grows irresistibly greater with time.
Weary of liberty, he suffered himself to be saddled and bridled, and was ridden to death for his pains.
I am amazed to see how deliberately I have entangled myself step by step. To have seen my position so clearly, and yet to have acted so like a child!
Must it ever be thus-that the source of our happiness must also be the fountain of our misery? The full and ardent sentiment which animated my heart with the love of nature, overwhelming me with a torrent of delight, and which brought all paradise before me, has now become an insupportable torment, a demon which perpetually pursues and harrasses me.
What I possess, seems far away to me, and what is gone becomes reality.
What a torment it is to see so much loveliness passing and repassing before us, and yet not dare to lay hold of it!
I am contented, happy, and consequently a bad historian.
My days are as happy as those reserved by God for his elect; and whatever be my fate hereafter, I can never say that I have not tasted joy- the purest joy of life.
What matters creative endless toil, When, at a snatch, oblivion ends the coil?
What is the destiny of man, but to fill up the measure of his sufferings, and to drink his allotted cup of bitterness?
I examine my own being, and find there a world, but a world rather of imagination and dim desires, than of distinctness and living power. Then everything swims before my senses, and I smile and dream while pursuing my way through the world.
No doubt you are right... there would be far less suffering amongst mankind if men... did not employ their imaginations so assiduously in recalling the memory of past sorrow, instead of bearing their present lot with equanimity.
When scholars study a thing, they strive to kill it first, if it's alive; then they have the parts and the'be lost the whole, for the link that's missing was the living soul.
When any distress or terror surprises us in the midst of our amusements, it naturally makes a deeper impression than at other times, either because the contrast makes us more keenly susceptible, or rather perhaps because our senses are then more open to impressions, and the shock is consequently stronger.
I treat my heart like a sick child and gratify its every fancy
No one is willing to believe that adults too, like children, wander about this earth in a daze and, like children, do not know where they come from or where they are going, act as rarely as they do according to genuine motives, and are as thoroughly governed as they are by biscuits and cake and the rod.
Wild dreams torment me as I lie. And though a god lives in my heart, though all my power waken at his word, though he can move my every inmost part - yet nothing in the outer world is stirred. thus by existence tortured and oppressed i crave for death, I long for rest.
When I consider the narrow limits within which our active and inquiring faculties are confined; when I see how all our energies are wasted in providing for mere necessities, which again have no further end than to prolong a wretched existence; and then that all our satisfaction concerning certain subjects of investigation ends in nothing better than a passive resignation... when I consider all this... I am silent.
All theory is gray, my friend. But forever green is the tree of life.
So the restless traveler long at last for his native soil, finds his cottage in the arms of his wife, in the affection of his children, labor necessary for their support, all the happiness which he sought in vain the wild world
And I like those authors best whose scenes describe my own situation in life-- and the friends who are about me whose stories touch me with interest, from resembling my own homely existence.
When she sees the leaves fall, they raise no other idea in her mind than that winter is approaching.
I was oppressed with the sensations I then felt; I sunk under the weight of them.
Did we force ourselves on you, or you on us?
Sometimes I don't understand how another can love her, is allowed to love her, since I love her so completely myself, so intensely, so fully, grasp nothing, know nothing, have nothing but her!
More Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Quotations (Based on Topics)
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More Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Quotations (By Book Titles)
- The Sorrows of Young Werther
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