Justice and truth are too such subtle points that our tools are too blunt to touch them accurately.
All of human unhappiness comes from one single thing: not knowing how to remain at rest in a room.
The struggle alone pleases us, not the victory.
We arrive at the truth, not by the reason only, but also by the heart.
All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone.
Kind words do not cost much. Yet they accomplish much.
The charm of fame is so great that we like every object to which it is attached, even death.
If we must not act save on a certainty, we ought not to act on religion, for it is not certain. But how many things we do on an uncertainty, sea voyages, battles!
There are only two kinds of people we can call reasonable: either those who serve God with their whole heart because they know him, or those who search after him with all their heart because they do not know him.
Nature has made all her truths independent of one another. Our art makes one dependent on the other. But this is not natural. Each keeps its own place.
Small minds are concerned with the extraordinary, great minds with the ordinary.
We cannot endure being despised, or not being esteemed by any soul; and all the happiness of men consists in this esteem.
Men often take their imagination for their heart; and they believe they are converted as soon as they think of being converted.
As men are not able to fight against death, misery, ignorance, they have taken it into their heads, in order to be happy, not to think of them at all.
To make a man a saint, it must indeed be by grace; and whoever doubts this does not know what a saint is, or a man.
All the principles of skeptics, stoics, atheists, etc., are true. But their conclusions are false, because the opposite principles are also true.
Equality of possessions is no doubt right, but, as men could not make might obey right, they have made right obey might. 299
Man must not think that he is on a level either with the brutes or with the angels, nor must he be ignorant of both sides of his nature; but he must know both.
I have discovered that all human evil comes from this, man's being unable to sit still in a room.
It is natural for the mind to believe and for the will to love; so that, for want of true objects, they must attach themselves to false.
Even those who write against fame wish for the fame of having written well, and those who read their works desire the fame of having read them.
All the miseries of mankind come from one thing, not knowing how to remain alone.
Habit is a second nature that destroys the first. But what is nature? Why is habit not natural? I am very much afraid that nature itself is only a first habit, just as habit is a second nature.
To be happy man would have to make himself immortal; but, not being able to do so, it has occurred to him to prevent himself from thinking of death.
Man is so made that if he is told often enough that he is a fool he believes it.
Evil is easy, and has infinite forms.
As nature is an image of grace, he has done in the bounties of nature what he would do in those of grace, in order that we might judge that he could make the invisible, since he made the visible excellently.
It is to judgment that perception belongs, as science belongs to intellect. Intuition is the part of judgment, mathematics of intellect.
Atheism shows strength of mind, but only to a certain degree.
There are two kinds of people one can call reasonable; those who serve God with all their heart because they know Him, and those who seek Him with all their heart because they do not know Him.
Love knows no limit to its endurance, no end to its trust, no fading of its hope; it can outlast anything. Love still stands when all else has fallen.
Contradiction is not a sign of falsity, nor the lack of contradiction a sign of truth.
If all men knew what each said of the other, there would not be four friends in the world.
Fear not, provided you fear but if you fear not, then fear.
For as old age is that period of life most remote from infancy, who does not see that old age in this universal man ought not to be sought in the times nearest his birth, but in those most remote from it.
Justice and truth are two such subtle points, that our tools are too blunt to touch them accurately. If they reach the point, they either crush it, or lean all round, more on the false than on the true.
The last thing one discovers in composing a work is what to put first.
Some vices only lay hold of us by means of others, and these, like branches, fall on removal of the trunk.
If you gain, you gain all. If you lose, you lose nothing. Wager then, without hesitation, that he exists.
The heart has reasons that reason cannot know.