I haven’t done a quote post in a while, but it’s Monday, it’s August, so why not a little food for thought?
One of the characters in my current WIP is, like me, an admirer of the 19th century philosopher, Arthur Schopenhauer. I didn’t start out to create a Schopenhauer groupie, but early on, the character ended up reciting the only Schopenhauer quote I know by heart:
“Compassion for animals is intimately connected with goodness of character; and it may be confidently asserted that he who is cruel to animals cannot be a good man.”
Fast forward seven or eight months, and it turns out my character has a bookcase full of Schopenhauer and no problem discussing why Schopenhauer aligns well with Wicca.
This is why I’m a pantser. Had I plotted the story beyond the beat points, I guarantee I would not have come up with a character who is a former incest victim and practiced healer, who served time for murder, loves animals, reads Schopenhauer, practices Wicca, and owns what is essentially a botánica.
Okay, this is all boring background stuff, so let’s get to the Schopenhauer quotes, which are not boring (I hope).
“The assumption that animals are without rights and the illusion that our treatment of them has no moral significance is a positively outrageous example of Western crudity and barbarity. Universal compassion is the only guarantee of morality.”
(Schopenhauer, a man of his time, was by today’s standards a raging sexist)
“I believe that if a woman succeeds in withdrawing from the mass, or rather raising herself above the mass, she grows ceaselessly and more than a man.”
“Treat a work of art like a prince: let it speak to you first.”
On Truth and Prejudice
“The discovery of truth is prevented more effectively, not by the false appearance things present and which mislead into error, not directly by weakness of the reasoning powers, but by preconceived opinion, by prejudice.”
“Each day is a little life: every waking and rising a little birth, every fresh morning a little youth, every going to rest and sleep a little death.”
“Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see.”
“Every miserable fool who has nothing at all of which he can be proud, adopts as a last resource pride in the nation to which he belongs; he is ready and happy to defend all its faults and follies tooth and nail, thus reimbursing himself for his own inferiority.
“A sense of humor is the only divine quality of man”
“The inexpressible depth of music, so easy to understand and yet so inexplicable, is due to the fact that it reproduces all the emotions of our innermost being, but entirely without reality and remote from its pain… Music expresses only the quintessence of life and its events, never these themselves.”
On Books & Reading
LOVE this one:
“Buying books would be a good thing if one could also buy the time to read them; but as a rule the purchase of books is mistaken for the appropriation of their contents.”
And this one:
“A precondition for reading good books is not reading bad ones: for life is short.”
“Without books the development of civilization would have been impossible. They are the engines of change, windows on the world, ‘Lighthouses’ as the poet said ‘erected in the sea of time.’ They are companions, teachers, magicians, bankers of the treasures of the mind, Books are humanity in print.”
That’s it for this Monday.
Your mission: make it a week worth writing about!