Choice & self

“You will never be able to escape from your heart.”
– Paulo Coelho

“What I really need is to be clear about what I am to do, not what I must know, except in the way knowledge must precede all action…the thing is to find a truth which is truth for me, to find the idea for which I am willing to live and die.”
– Soren Kierkegaard

“If the truth is found to be lies, and the hope within you dies, then what?” – Cohen Brothers

“Men may rise on the stepping stones of their dead selves to higher things” – Lord Alfred Tennyson

“No individual has any right to come into the world and go out of it without leaving behind distinct and legitimate reasons for having passed through it” – George Washington Carver

“How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.”
– Henry David Thoreau

“The sacrifice of life is, in many cases, the easiest of all sacrifices.”
– Fyodor Dostoyevsky

“…in choice it is less a matter of choosing correctly than of the energy, earnest and feeling with which one chooses.”
– Soren Kierkegaard

“God and the devil are fighting and the battlefield is the heart of man.”
– Fyodor Dostoyevsky

“…courage is demanded not to attack when afraid…” 
– Mohsin Hamid

“‘How did you go bankrupt?’…’Gradually and then suddenly.'”
– Ernest Hemingway

“The best revenge is not to be like that.”
– Marcus Aurelius

“‘Sometimes a man wants to be stupid if it lets him do a thing his cleverness forbids.'”
– John Steinbeck

“Our own worth is measured by what we devote our energy to.”
– Marcus Aurelius

“It was ruining everything, but you might as well enjoy it.”
– Ernest Hemingway

“Most people just accepted work. Some even enjoyed it because they had absolutely no idea what else they could possibly do. Without white-out and collating and requisition forms there would be nothing to talk about over the kitchen table at dinner during commercials.”
– Sarah Schulman

“If a thing was right fundamentally the lying was not supposed to matter.”
– Ernest Hemingway

“If not later, when?”
– André Aciman

“You cannot change what you are, only what you do.”
– Philip Pullman

“There is nothing so pitiful as a young cynic because he has gone from knowing nothing to believing nothing.”
– Maya Angelou

“A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.”
– John Shedd

“From nothing to nothing is no time at all.”
– John Steinbeck

“If the one who is to act wants to judge himself by the outcome, then he will never begin.”
– Soren Kierkegaard

“The wind is rising…We must try to live!”
– Paul Valéry

“When someone is searching, then it might easily happen that the only thing his eyes still see is that what he searches for, that he is unable to find anything, to let anything enter his mind, because he always thinks of nothing but the object of his search, because he has a goal, because he is obsessed by the goal. Searching means: having a goal. But finding means: being free, being open, having no goal. You… are perhaps indeed a searcher, because, striving for your goal, there are many things you don’t see, which are directly in front of your eyes.”
– Herman Hesse

“You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another. There’s nothing to that.”
– Ernest Hemingway

“The person who will not fight with reality gets phantoms to contend with.”
– Soren Kierkegaard

“The question is-have I really kept my integrity, or did I not sell out because no one was willing to buy?”
– Sarah Schulman

“… for the great thing is not to be this or that, but to be oneself; and every person can be that if he wants.”
– Soren Kierkegaard

“You paid some way for everything that was any good… Either you paid by learning about them, or by taking chances, or by money. Enjoying living was learning to get your money’s worth.”
– Ernest Hemingway