If it had not been for these things, I might have lived out my life talking at street corners to scorning men. I might have died, unmarked, unknown, a failure. Now we are not a failure. This is our career and our triumph. Never in our full life could we hope to do such work for tolerance, for justice, for man's understanding of man as now we do by accident. Our words — our lives — our pains — nothing! The taking of our lives — lives of a good shoemaker and a poor fish-peddler — all! That last moment belongs to us — that agony is our triumph.
If you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not to costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a small chance of survival. There may even be a worse case; you may have to fight when there is nohope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.
When adults say, "Teenagers think they are invincible" with that sly, stupid smile on their faces, they don't know how right they are. We need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We think that we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die. Like all energy, we can only change shapes and sizes and manifestations. They forget that when they get old. They get scared of losing and failing. But that part of us greater than the sum of our parts cannot begin and cannot end, and so it cannot fail.
Some wars result in complete and total victory. Some wars end with a peace offering. And some wars end in hope... But all these wars are nothing compared to the most frightening war of all. The one you have yet to fight.
Young people are very cynical now, you know? Very cynical! They've been taught cynicism, they've been - they've been bred cynicism. So, I think it's important to give them hope and realism in the same package, you know? You can be realistic but there should be - there should be hope in it. Because hope's what we're about. If we don't have hope then we don't go on.
I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge — myth is more potent than history — dreams are more powerful than facts — hope always triumphs over experience — laughter is the cure for grief — love is stronger than death.
For us there is no victory, there are only battles. And in the end the best you can hope for is to find a place to make your stand. And if you're very lucky you find someone willing to stand with you...
Es sind namhafte Philosophen als Vorgänger [meiner Lehre] anzuführen, vor allem der große Denker Schopenhauer, dessen unbewusster "Wille" den seelischen Trieben der Psychoanalyse gleichzusetzen ist. Derselbe Denker übrigens, der in Worten von unvergesslichem Nachdruck die Menschen an die immer noch unterschätzte Bedeutung ihres Sexualstrebens gemahnt hat.
Ich weiß nur noch einen Schriftsteller, den ich betreff der Ehrlichkeit Schopenhauer gleich, ja noch höher stelle: Das ist Montaigne. Dass ein solcher Mensch geschrieben hat, dadurch ist wahrlich die Lust, auf dieser Erde zu leben, vermehrt worden.
Epikur und Montaigne, Goethe und Spinoza, Plato und Rousseau, Pascal und Schopenhauer. Mit diesen muss ich mich auseinandersetzen, wenn ich lange allein gewandert bin, von ihnen will ich mir Recht und Unrecht geben lassen [...]