photo of Ralph Waldo EmersonPhoto Credit: WikiMedia Commons
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The religions we call false were once true.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The multitude of false churches accredits the true religion.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Old and new make the warp and woof of every moment. There is no thread that is not a twist of these two strands.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Never utter the truism but live it among men.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

That which shows God in me, fortifies me. That which shows God out of me, makes me a wart and a wen.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The soul lets no man go without some visitations and holy-days of a diviner presence.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The world is upheld by the veracity of good men: they make the earth wholesome.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

The world is upheld by the veracity of good men: they make the earth wholesome. They who lived with them found life glad and nutritious. Life is sweet and tolerable only in our belief in such society.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The reliance on authority measures the decline of religion, the withdrawal of the soul.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The maker of a sentence launches out into the infinite.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

The maker of a sentence launches out into the infinite and builds a road into Chaos and old Night, and is followed by those who hear him with something of wild, creative delight.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

All violence, all that is dreary and repels, is not power, but the absence of power.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Drudgery, calamity, exasperation, want, are instructors in eloquence and wisdom.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

There is this to be said in favor of drinking, that it takes the drunkard first out of society, then out of the world.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

A nation, like a tree, does not thrive well till it is engraffed with a foreign stock.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Cultivate an attitude of gratitude, of giving and forgiving. Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Not the sun or summer alone, but every hour and season yields its tribute of delight.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

Not the sun or the summer alone, but every hour and season yields its tribute of delight; for every hour and change corresponds to and authorizes a different state of the mind, from breathless noon to grimmest midnight.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Style is only the frame to hold your thoughts. It is like the sash of a window; if heavy, it will obscure the light.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Knowledge is the antidote to fear.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

That man is idle who can do something better.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

It is dainty to be sick if you have leisure and convenience for it.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

I look on that man as happy, who, when there is question of success, looks into his work for a reply.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Give me wine to wash me clean of the weather-stains of cares.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Passion, though a bad regulator, is a powerful spring.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

lPassion, though a bad regulator, is a powerful spring. Any absorbing passion has the effect to deliver from the little coils and cares of every day: 'tis the heat which sets our human atoms spinning, overcomes the friction of crossing thresholds, and first addresses in society, and gives us a good start and speed, easy to continue, when once it is begun.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

It is a luxury to be understood.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Good manners are made up of petty sacrifices.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Repose and cheerfulness is the badge of the gentleman; repose in energy.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

When the eyes say one thing, and the tongue another, a practiced man relies on the language of the first.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Every man contemplates an angel in his future self.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Ideas must work through the brains and the arms of good and brave men or they are no better than dreams.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The wonder is that we can see these trees and not wonder more.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Many a man had taken the first step. With every additional step you enhance immensely the value of your first.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

When duty whispers low, Thou must, The youth replies, I can.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

It is very hard to be simple enough to be good.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Sleep lingers all our lifetime about our eyes, as night hovers all day in the boughs of the fir-tree.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Magic and all that is ascribed to it is a deep presentiment of the powers of science.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

Magic and all that is ascribed to it is a deep presentiment of the powers of science. The shoes of swiftness, the sword of sharpness, the power of subduing the elements, of using the secret virtues of minerals, of understanding the voices of birds, are the obscure efforts of the mind in a right direction.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Every sweet has its sour; every evil its good.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The best picture makes us say, I am a painter also.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The river knows the way to the sea:
Without a pilot it runs and falls,
Blessing all lands with its charity.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

To a dull mind all of nature is leaden. To the illumined mind the whole world burns and sparkles with light.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

To the illuminated mind the whole world sparkles with light.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The great will not condescend to take anything seriously.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

When the spirit is not master of the world, then it is its dupe.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Self trust is the essence of heroism.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The heroic soul does not sell its justice and its nobleness.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

The heroic soul does not sell its justice and its nobleness. It does not ask to dine nicely and to sleep warm. The essence of greatness is the perception that virtue is enough. Poverty is its ornament. It does not need plenty, and can very well abide its loss.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Heroism feels and never reasons, and therefore is always right.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

When a man says to me, I have the intensest love of nature, at once I know that he has none.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The walking of Man is falling forwards.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Great men do not content us. It is their solitude, not their force, that makes them conspicuous.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

All great successes are the triumph of persistence.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

One of the illusions of life is that the present hour is not the critical, decisive one.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

One of the illusions of life is that the present hour is not the critical, decisive hour. Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year. No man has learned anything rightly, until he knows that every day is Doomsday.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Men talk as if victory were something fortunate. Work is victory.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Wherever work is done, victory is attained.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Every great achievement is the victory of a flaming heart.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The chief mourner does not always attend the funeral.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

A man's library is a sort of harem.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Guard your own spare moments. They are like uncut diamonds.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The surest poison is time.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

A beautiful soul always dwells in a beautiful world.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The greatest man in history was the poorest.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The secret is the answer to all that has been, all that is, and all that will ever be.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

He only is rich who owns the day.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

It does not hurt weak eyes to look into beautiful eyes never so long.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Perception is a mirror not a fact. And what I look on is my state of mind, reflected outward.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Talent alone cannot make a writer. There must be a man behind the book.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Only a biker knows why a dog sticks his head out of a car window.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Love not the flower they pluck and know it not, And all their botany is Latin names.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Our chief want in life is somebody who will make us do what we can.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

Our chief want in life, is, someone who shall make us do what we can. This is the service of a friend. With him we are easily great.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

How cunningly nature hides every wrinkle of her inconceivable antiquity under roses and violets and morning dew!

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Dream delivers us to dream and there is no end to illusion.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

Dream delivers us to dream, and there is no end to illusion. Life is like a train of moods like a string of beads, and, as we pass through them, they prove to be many-colored lenses which paint the world their own hue.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Your goodness must have some edge to it -- else it is none.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Every man passes his life in the search after friendship.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

I have heard that whoever loves is in no condition old.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

I have heard that whoever loves is in no condition old. I have heard that whenever the name of man is spoken, the doctrine of immortality is announced; it cleaves to his constitution. The mode of it baffles our wit, and no whisper comes to us from the other side. But the inference from the working of intellect, hiving knowledge, hiving skill,--at the end of life just ready to be born,--affirms the inspirations of affection and of the moral sentiment.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Life is short but there is always time for courtesy.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

You cannot sincerely try to help another without helping yourself.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Don't waste yourself in rejection, nor bark against the bad, but chant the beauty of the good.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Belief consists in accepting the affirmations of the soul; unbelief in denying them.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The power of a man increases steadily by continuing in one direction.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

The power of a man increases steadily by continuance in one direction. He becomes acquainted with the resistances and with his own tools; increases his skill and strength and learns the favorable moments and favorable accidents.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

One idea lights a thousand candles.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better. What if they are a little coarse and you may get your coat soiled or torn? What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice? Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.


monarch butterfly perched on pink flower in close up photography during daytime

Love is like wildflowers; it's often found in the most unlikely places.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Traveling is a fool's paradise.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

Traveling is a fool's paradise. Our first journeys discover to us the indifference of places. At home I dream that at Naples, at Rome, I can be intoxicated with beauty, and lose my sadness. I pack my trunk, embrace my friends, embark on the sea, and at last wake up in Naples, and there beside me is the stern fact, the sad self, unrelenting, identical, that I fled from. I seek the Vatican, and the palaces. I affect to be intoxicated with sights and suggestions, but I am not intoxicated. My giant goes with me wherever I go.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it well and serenely.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it well and serenely, and with too high a spirit to be cumbered with your old nonsense. This day is too dear with its hopes and invitations to waste a moment on the rotten yesterdays.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

He who has a thousand friends has not a friend to spare, while he who has one enemy shall meet him everywhere.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Go oft to the house of thy friend, for weeds choke the unused path.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The only prudence in life is concentration.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

History is the action and reaction of these two, nature and thought.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

When I first open my eyes upon the morning meadows and look out upon the beautiful world, I thank God I am alive.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Democracy becomes a government of bullies tempered by editors.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Let not a man guard his dignity, but let his dignity guard him.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

The only thing grief has taught me is to know how shallow it is.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

His heart was as great as the world, but there was no room in it to hold the memory of a wrong.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

We wake from one dream into another dream.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

It's the not the destination, it's the journey.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

There are many things of which a wise man might wish to be ignorant.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Tis the good reader that makes the good book.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

Tis the good reader that makes the good book; in every book he finds passages which seem confidences or asides hidden from all else and unmistakenly meant for his ear; the profit of books is according to the sensibility of the reader; the profoundest thought or passion sleeps as in a mine, until it is discovered by an equal mind and heart.


photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Money often costs too much.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts; they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Some people will tell you there is a great deal of poetry and fine sentiment in a chest of tea.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

Scatter joy!

--Ralph Waldo Emerson
photo of author Ralph Waldo Emerson with quote

God will not have his work made manifest by cowards.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Longer Version:

God will not have his work made manifest by cowards. Always, always, always, always, always do what you are afraid to do. Do the thing you fear and the death of fear is certain.


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