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Leo Tolstoy

If, then, I were asked for the most important advice I could give, that which I considered to be the most useful to the men of our century, I should simply say: in the name of God, stop a moment, cease your work, look around you. — Leo Tolstoy, Essays, Letters and Miscellanies. (Wildside Press,… Continue reading Leo Tolstoy

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Emil Cioran

We perceive first the anomaly of sheer existence, and only afterward that of our specific situation: the surprise of being precedes the surprise of being human. Yet the strange character of our state should constitute the primordial datum of our perplexities: it is less natural to be man than, simply, to be. We feel this… Continue reading Emil Cioran

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Classic · Excerpt · French Culture · French Literature · Non-fiction · Passage · Philosophy · Quote · Religion · Theory

Georges Bataille

We have in fact only two certainties in this world—that we are not everything and that we will die. To be conscious of not being everything, as one is of being mortal, is nothing. But if we are without a narcotic, an unbreathable void reveals itself. I wanted to be everything, so that falling into… Continue reading Georges Bataille

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Autobiographical · Biographical · British Culture · Classic · Confessional · Diary · English Literature · Excerpt · Journal · Modernism · Non-fiction · Notebook · Passage · Quote

Virginia Woolf

My heart is spilled open; words refuse to bounce and settle. No writing. Everything disappears but the feel of utter equilibrium between fractured echoes. I dig for a name under the shadow of this feeling; the intention is sparkling but I am incapable of disturbing the silence. I am at peace and I wonder not… Continue reading Virginia Woolf

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Classic · Collection · Compilation · Essay · Excerpt · French Culture · French Literature · Non-fiction · Passage · Philosophy · Quote

Albert Camus

“This very heart which is mine will forever remain indefinable to me. Between the certainty I have of my existence and the content I try to give to that assurance, the gap will never be filled. For ever I shall be a stranger to myself. — Albert Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus. (Penguin Classic, November… Continue reading Albert Camus

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