Jostein Gaarder Quotes (36 Quotes)


    Maybe we can comprehend a flower or an insect, but we can never comprehend ourselves. Even less can we expect to comprehend the universe.

    A composition-and every work of art is one-is created in a wondrous interplay between imagination and reason, or between mind and reflection. For there will always be an element of chance in the creative process.

    We can be hindered in our development and our personal growth by political conditions. Outer circumstances can constrain us. Only when we are free to develop our innate abilities can we live as free beings. But we are just as much determined by inner potential and outer opportunities as the Stone Age boy on the Rhine, the lion in Africa, or the apple tree in the garden.

    Dear Hilde, if the human brain was simple enough for us to understand, we would still be so stupid that we couldn't understand it. Love, Dad.



    A hydrogen atom in a cell at the end of my nose was once part of an elephant's trunk. A carbon atom in my cardiac muscle was once in the tail of a dinosaur.


    He could very likely have appealed for leniency. At least he could have saved his life by agreeing to leave Athens. But had he done this he would not have been Socrates. He valued his conscience--and the truth-- higher than life.


    A lot of people experience the world with the same incredulity as when a magician pulls a rabbit out of a hat.àWe know that the world is not all sleight of hand and deception because we are in it, we are part of it. Actually we are the white rabbit being pulled out of the hat. The only difference beween us and the white rabbit is that the rabbit does not realize it is taking part in a magic trick.


    Hegel said that `truth` is subjective, thus rejecting the existence of any `truth` above or beyond human reason. All knowledge is human knowledge.


    A philosopher knows that in reality he knows very little. That is why he constantly strives to achieve true insight. Socrates was one of these rare people. He knew that he knew nothing about life and about the world. And now comes the important part: it troubled him that he knew so little.


    I believe there is something of the divine mystery in everything that exists. We can see it sparkle in a sunflower or a poppy. We sense more of the unfathomable mystery in a butterfly that flutters from a twig--or in a goldfish swimming in a bowl. But we are closest to God in our own soul. Only there can we become one with the greatest mystery of life. In truth, at very rare moments we can experience that we ourselves are that divine mystery.



    If an overgrown child draws something on a piece of paper, you can't ask the paper what the drawing is supposed to represent.

    The rearing of children is considered too important to be left to the individual and should be the responsibility of the state.

    According to Kierkegaard, rather than searching for the Truth with a capital T, it is more important to find the kind of truths that are meaningful to the individual's life. It is important to find `the truth for me`.

    It is by no means certain that we advance our philosophical quest by reading Plato or Aristotle. It may increase our knowledge of history but not of the world.

    The soul yearns to fly home on the wings of love to the world of ideas. It longs to be freed from the chains of the body.

    Acting responsibly is not a matter of strengthening our reason but of deepening our feelings for the welfare of others.


    The stupidest thing she knew was for people to act like they knew all about the things they knew absolutely nothing about.



    Throughout the entire history of philosophy, philosophers have sought to discover what man is - or what human nature is. But Sartre believed that man has no such eternal nature to fall back on. It is therefore useless to search for the meaning of life in general. We are condemned to improvise. We are like actors dragged onto the stage without having learned our lines, with no script and no prompter to whisper stage directions to us. We must decide for ourselves how to live.

    But flying across the centuries would have been a hefty job even for a very ironic goose. Crossing the Swedish provinces is far easier


    More Jostein Gaarder Quotations (Based on Topics)


    Life - World - People - Truth - Reasoning - Philosophy - Love - Belief & Faith - Wisdom & Knowledge - History - Space - Abilities - Fathers - Duty - Creativity & Innovation - Movies - Chance - Work & Career - Insects - View All Jostein Gaarder Quotations

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    - Sophie's World

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