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Browse by: Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Our strength grows out of our weakness. The indignation which arms itself with secret forces does not awaken until we are pricked and stung and sorely assailed. A great man is always willing to be little. Whilst he sits on the cushion of advantages, he goes to sleep. When he is pushed, tormented, defeated, he has a chance to learn something; he has been put on his wits, on his manhood; he has gained facts; learns his ignorance; he is cured of the insanity of conceit; he's got moderation and real skill. The wise man throws himself on the side of his assailants. It is more his interest that it is theirs to find his weak point. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 12/10/2016

Though slowly and with pain, the objects of our affections change, as the objects of thought do. There are moments when the affections rule and absorb the man, and make his happiness dependent on a person or persons. But in health, the mind is presently seen again, its overarching vault, bright with galaxies of immutable lights, and the warm loves and fears that swept over us as clouds, must lose their finite character, and blend with God, to attain their own perfection. But we need not fear that we can lose any thing by the progress of the soul. The soul may be trusted to the end. That which is so beautiful and attractive as these relations, must be succeeded and supplanted only by what is more beautiful, and so on forever. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 06/04/2015

This one fact the world hates, that the soul becomes; for that forever degrades the past, turns all riches to poverty, all reputation to a shame, confounds the saint with the rogue, shoves Jesus and Judas equally aside. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

The Light by which we see this world comes out of the soul of the observer. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

Whenever a mind is simple, and receives a divine wisdom, old things pass away, --means, teachers, texts, temples fall; it lives now, and absorbs past and future into the present hour. All things are made sacred by relation to it, --one as much as another. All things are dissolved to their centre by their cause, and, in the universal miracle, petty and particular miracles disappear. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

But prayer as a means to effect a private end is meanness and theft. It supposes dualism and not unity in nature and consciousness. As soon as the man is at one with God, he will not beg. He will then see prayer in action. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

Welcome evermore to gods and men is the self-helping man. For him all doors are flung wide: him all tongues greet, all honors crown, all eyes follow with desire. Our love goes out to him and embraces him, because he did not need it. We solicitously and apologetically caress and celebrate him, because he held on his way and scorned our disapprobation. The gods love him because men hated him. "To the persevering mortal," said Zoroaster, "the blessed Immortals are swift." Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

So, in regard to disagreeable and formidable things, prudence does not consist in evasion or flight, but in courage. He who wishes to walk in the most peaceful parts of life with any serenity must screw himself up to resolution. Let him front the object of his worst apprehension, and his stoutness will commonly make his fear groundless. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

Silence is a solvent that destroys personality, and gives us leave to be great and universal. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

Solitude, the safeguard of mediocrity, is to genius the stern friend, the cold, obscure shelter where moult the wings which will bear it farther than suns and stars. He who would inspire and lead his race must be defended from traveling with the souls of other men, from living, breathing, reading, and writing in the daily, time-worn yoke of their opinions. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

God offers to every mind its choice between truth and repose. Take which you please, -- you can never have both. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

My life is for itself and not for a spectacle. I much prefer that it should be of a lower strain, so it be genuine and equal, than that it should be glittering and unsteady. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

A little consideration of what takes place around us every day would show us that a higher law than that of our will regulates events; that our painful labors are unnecessary and fruitless; that only in our easy, simple, spontaneous action are we strong...Place yourself in the middle of the stream of power and wisdom which animates all whom it floats, and you are without effort impelled to truth, to right, and a perfect contentment. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

Time and space are but physiological colors which the eye makes, but the soul is light; where it is, is day; where it was, is night. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

Nature suffers nothing to remain in her kingdoms which cannot help itself. The genesis and maturation of a planet, its poise and orbit, the bended tree recovering itself from the strong wind, the vital resources of every animal and vegetable, are demonstrations of the self-sufficing, and therefore self-relying soul. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

Prayer that craves a particular commodity, -- anything less than all good, -- is vicious. Prayer is the contemplation of the facts of life from the highest point of view. It is the soliloquy of a beholding and jubilant soul. It is the spirit of God pronouncing his works good. But prayer as a means to effect a private end is meanness and theft. It supposes dualism and not unity in nature and consciousness. As soon as the man is at one with God, he will not beg. He will then see prayer in all action. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

Every man's condition is a solution in hieroglyph to those inquiries he would put. He acts it as life before he apprehends it as truth. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

What is the hardest task in the world? To think. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

Dear to us are those who love us. . .but dearer are those who reject us as unworthy, for they add another life, they build a heaven before us whereof we had not dreamed, and thereby supply to us new powers out of the recesses of the spirit, and urge us to new and unattempted performances. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011

The power men possess to annoy me, I give them by a weak curiosity. No man can come near me but through my act. Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803)

Date added: 09/25/2011
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