Marcel Proust Quotations

Marcel Proust

A powerful idea communicates some of its power to the man who contradicts it.

But since I knew now that I could hope for nothing of greater value than frivolous pleasures, what point was there in denying myself of them?

Everything great in the world comes from neurotics. They alone have founded our religions, and composed our masterpieces. Never will the world know all it owes to them, nor all they have suffered to enrich us.

Griefs, at the moment when they change into ideas, lose some of their power to injure our heart.

How many times in the course of life had I been disappointed by reality because, at the time I was observing it, my imagination, the only organ with which I could enjoy beauty, was not able to function, by virtue of the inexorable law which decrees that only that which is absent can be imagined.

Illness is the most heeded of doctors: to goodness and wisdom we only make promises; pain we obey.

It is always during a passing state of mind that we make lasting resolutions.

It is seldom indeed that one parts on good terms, because if one were on good terms one would not part.

Let us leave pretty women to men without imagination.

Man is the creature that cannot emerge from himself, that knows his fellows only in himself; when he asserts the contrary, he is lying.

Often it is just lack of imagination that keeps a man from suffering very much.

That which we remember of our conduct is ignored by our closest neighbor; but that which we have forgotten having said, or even what we never said, will cause laughter even into the next world.

The fixity of habit is generally in direct proportion to its absurdity.

The one thing more difficult than following a regimen is not imposing it on others.

The only thing that does not change is that at any and every time it appears that there have been "great changes."

The opinions we hold of one another, our relations with friends and kinfolk are in no sense permanent, save in appearance, but are as eternally fluid as the sea itself.

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.

There can be no piece of mind in love, since the advantage one has secured is never anything but a fresh starting-point for future desires.

The stellar universe is not so difficult of comprehension as the real actions of other people.

The time which we have at our disposal every day is elastic; the passions that we feel expand it, those that we inspire contract it; and habit fills up what remains.

Things don't change, but, by and by, our wishes change.

We are healed of a suffering only by experiencing it in full.

We don't receive wisdom; we must discover it for ourselves after a journey that no one can take for us or spare us.