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Do you not know that there comes a midnight hour
by Soren Kierkegaard

Do you not know that there comes a midnight hour
when every one has to throw off his mask?
Do you believe that life will always let itself be mocked?
Do you think you can slip away a little before midnight
in order to avoid this? Or are you not terrified by it?
I have seen men in real life who so long deceived others
that at last their true nature could not reveal itself;...
In every man there is something which to a certain degree
prevents him from becoming perfectly transparent to himself;
and this may be the case in so high a degree,
he may be so inexplicably woven into relationships of life
which extend far beyond himself that he almost cannot reveal himself.
But he who cannot reveal himself cannot love,
and he who cannot love is the most unhappy man of all.
- Soren Kierkegaard

It seems essential, in relationships and all tasks,
that we concentrate only
on what is most significant and important.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Life has its own hidden forces which you can only discover by living.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The more a man can forget, the greater the number
of metamorphoses which his life can undergo,
the more he can remember, the more divine his life becomes.
- Soren Kierkegaard

 

Most men pursue pleasure with such breathless haste
that they hurry past it.
- Soren Kierkegaard

A man who as a physical being
is always turned toward the outside,
thinking that his happiness lies outside him,
finally turns inward and
discovers that the source is within him.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Face the facts of being what you are,
for that is what changes what you are.
- Soren Kierkegaard

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The minority is always stronger than the majority,
because the minority is generally formed by those
who really have an opinion.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Far from idleness being the root of all evil,
it is rather the only true good.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The truth is a snare:
you cannot have it, without being caught.
You cannot have the truth
in such a way that you catch it,
but only in such a way that it catches you.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The tyrant dies and his rule is over,
the martyr dies and his rule begins
- Soren Kierkegaard

During the first period of a man's life
the greatest danger is not to take the risk.
- Soren Kierkegaard

There is nothing with which every man is so afraid
as getting to know how enormously much
he is capable of doing and becoming.
- Soren Kierkegaard

At the bottom of enmity between strangers lies indifference.
- Soren Kierkegaard

People hardly ever make use of the freedom which they have,
for example, freedom of thought;
instead they demand freedom of speech as a compensation.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The highest and most beautiful things in life
are not to be heard about, nor read about, nor seen but,
if one will, are to be lived.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Once you label me, you negate me.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Our life always expresses the result of our dominant thoughts.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The greatest hazard of all, losing one's self,
can occur very quietly in the world, as if it were nothing at all.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Life can only be understood backwards;
but it must be lived forwards.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Be that self which one truly is.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Love is all, it gives all, and it takes all.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The function of prayer is not to influence God,
but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Love does not alter the beloved, it alters itself.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Prayer doesn't change God, but changes him who prays
- Soren Kierkegaard

If I am capable of grasping God objectively,
I do not believe, but precisely because
I cannot do this I must believe.
- Soren Kierkegaard

People understand me so poorly that they don't even understand
my complaint about them not understanding me.
- Soren Kierkegaard

To dare is to lose one's footing momentarily.
Not to dare is to lose oneself.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Pleasure disappoints, possibility never
- Soren Kierkegaard

Never cease loving a person, and never give up hope for him,
for even the prodigal son who had fallen most low,
could still be saved; the bitterest enemy
and also he who was your friend could again be your friend;
love that has grown cold can kindle
- Soren Kierkegaard

Where am I? Who am I? How did I come to be here?
What is this thing called the world?
How did I come into the world?
Why was I not consulted?
And If I am compelled to take part in it,
Where is the director? I want to see him.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Faith is the highest passion in a human being.
Many in every generation may not come that far, but none comes further.
- Soren Kierkegaard

If I were to wish for anything,
I should not wish for wealth and power,
but for the passionate sense of potential -
for the eye which, ever young and ardent, sees the possible.
Pleasure disappoints; possibility never.
- Soren Kierkegaard

God creates out of nothing. Wonderful you say.
Yes, to be sure, but he does what is still more wonderful:
he makes saints out of sinners.
- Soren Kierkegaard

When you read God's Word, you must
constantly be saying to yourself,
"It is talking to me, and about me."
- Soren Kierkegaard

Truth always rests with the minority,
and the minority is always stronger than the majority,
because the minority is generally formed by those
who really have an opinion,
while the strength of a majority is illusory,
formed by the gangs who have no opinion -
and who, therefore, in the next instant
(when it is evident that the minority is the stronger)
assume its opinion... while truth again reverts to a new minority.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Prayer does not change God, but it changes him who prays.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Above all, do not lose your desire to walk.
Every day I walk myself into a state of well-being
and walk away from every illness.
I have walked myself into my best thoughts,
and I know of no thought so burdensome
that one cannot walk away from it.
- Soren Kierkegaard

I begin with the principle that all men are bores.
Surely no one will prove himself
so great a bore as to contradict me in this.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The self-assured believer is a greater sinner
in the eyes of God than the troubled disbeliever
- Soren Kierkegaard

People demand freedom of speech as a compensation for
the freedom of thought which they seldom use.
- Soren Kierkegaard

It was completely fruitless to quarrel with the world,
whereas the quarrel with oneself was occasionally fruitful and always,
she had to admit, interesting.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Life is not a problem to be solved, but a reality to be experienced.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Don't forget to love yourself.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Marriage brings one into fatal connection with custom and tradition,
and traditions and customs are like the wind and weather,
altogether incalculable.
- Soren Kierkegaard

One can advise comfortably from a safe port.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Listen to the cry of a woman in labor at the hour of giving birth -
look at the dying man's struggle at his last extremity,
and then tell me whether something that begins and ends thus
could be intended for enjoyment.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Because of its tremendous solemnity death is the light in which great passions,
both good and bad, become transparent,
no longer limited by outward appearences.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Take away paradox from the thinker and you have a professor.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Patience is necessary, and one cannot reap immediately where one has sown.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Personality is only ripe when a man has made the truth his own.
- Soren Kierkegaard

How absurd men are!
They never use the liberties they have,
they demand those they do not have.
They have freedom of thought, they demand freedom of speech.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Since boredom advances and boredom is the root of all evil,
no wonder, then, that the world goes backwards, that evil spreads.
This can be traced back to the very beginning of the world.
The gods were bored; therefore they created human beings.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Trouble is the common denominator of living.
It is the great equalizer.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Old age realizes the dreams of youth:
look at Dean Swift;
in his youth he built an asylum for the insane,
in his old age he was himself an inmate.
- Soren Kierkegaard

It is so hard to believe because it is so hard to obey.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Since my earliest childhood a barb of sorrow has lodged in my heart.
As long as it stays I am ironic if it is pulled out I shall die.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Boredom is the root of all evil - the despairing refusal to be oneself.
- Soren Kierkegaard

I feel as if I were a piece in a game of chess,
when my opponent says of it: That piece cannot be moved.
- Soren Kierkegaard

It belongs to the imperfection of everything human
that man can only attain his desire by passing through its opposite.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Purity of heart is to will one thing.
- Soren Kierkegaard

What is a poet? An unhappy person who conceals profound
anguish in his heart but whose lips are so formed that
as sighs and cries pass over them they sound like beautiful music.
- Soren Kierkegaard

There are, as is known, insects that die in the moment of fertilization.
So it is with all joy: life's highest,
most splendid moment of enjoyment is accompanied by death.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Concepts, like individuals, have their histories and
are just as incapable of withstanding the ravages of time as are individuals.
But in and through all this they retain a kind of homesickness
for the scenes of their childhood.
- Soren Kierkegaard

People commonly travel the world over to see rivers and mountains,
new stars, garish birds, freak fish,
grotesque breeds of human; they fall into an animal
stupor that gapes at existence and they think they have seen something.
- Soren Kierkegaard

I see it all perfectly; there are two possible situations -
one can either do this or that.
My honest opinion and my friendly advice is this:
do it or do not do it -
you will regret both.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Not just in commerce but in the world of ideas too
our age is putting on a veritable clearance sale.
Everything can be had so dirt cheap that one begins
to wonder whether in the end anyone will want to make a bid.
- Soren Kierkegaard

Just as in earthly life lovers long for the moment
when they are able to breathe forth their love for each other,
to let their souls blend in a soft whisper,
so the mystic longs for the moment when in prayer he can,
as it were, creep into God.
- Soren Kierkegaard

The paradox is really the pathos of intellectual life
and just as only great souls are exposed to passions
it is only the great thinker who is exposed to what I call paradoxes,
which are nothing else than grandiose thoughts in embryo.
- Soren Kierkegaard


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