Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau (born David Henry Thoreau; July 12, 1817 – May 6, 1862) was an American author, poet, abolitionist, naturalist,tax resister, development critic, surveyor, historian, philosopher, and leading transcendentalist. He is best known for his book Walden, a reflection upon simple living in natural surroundings, and his essay, Civil Disobedience, an argument for individual resistance to civil government in moral opposition to an unjust state. [wiki]

Quotes by Thoreau: [brainyquote]

Aim above morality. Be not simply good, be good for something.

All men are children, and of one family. The same tale sends them all to bed, and wakes them in the morning.

An early-morning walk is a blessing for the whole day.

Any fool can make a rule, and any fool will mind it.

Be true to your work, your word, and your friend.

Beware of all enterprises that require a new set of clothes.

Could a greater miracle take place than for us to look through each other’s eyes for an instant?

Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.

Do not hire a man who does your work for money, but him who does it for love of it.

Do not worry if you have built your castles in the air. They are where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.

Do what nobody else can do for you. Omit to do anything else.

Faith never makes a confession.

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.

I am sorry to think that you do not get a man’s most effective criticism until you provoke him. Severe truth is expressed with some bitterness.

I love to be alone. I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude.

I put a piece of paper under my pillow, and when I could not sleep I wrote in the dark.

I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.

If a man constantly aspires is he not elevated?

If I knew for a certainty that a man was coming to my house with the conscious design of doing me good, I should run for my life.

If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in common hours.

If we will be quiet and ready enough, we shall find compensation in every disappointment.

If you can speak what you will never hear, if you can write what you will never read, you have done rare things.

In the long run, men hit only what they aim at. Therefore, they had better aim at something high.

It is what a man thinks of himself that really determines his fate.

Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after.

Money is not required to buy one necessity of the soul.

Never look back unless you are planning to go that way.

Night is certainly more novel and less profane than day.

None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm.

Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.

Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk with love and reverence.

Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it.

That man is rich whose pleasures are the cheapest.

The most I can do for my friend is simply be his friend.

The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.

The smallest seed of faith is better than the largest fruit of happiness.

Things do not change; we change.

Those whom we can love, we can hate; to others we are indifferent.

We are always paid for our suspicion by finding what we suspect.

We are not what we are, nor do we treat or esteem each other for such, but for what we are capable of being.

What is once well done is done forever.

What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compared to what lives within us.

 

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