25 Thoughtful and Inspiring Quotes from Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Emre Ülkem

Emre Ülkem

Boğaziçi Uni.

Goethe, the most significant name of German literature, was not only interested in literature but also in many subjects, including education, law, philosophy and natural sciences. Kafka described Goethe as ‘someone who says everything that can be said about life’. Faust and The Sorrows of Young Werther are Goethe’s best-known works. Let’s take a look at the valuable words in the works of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

1) It is not enough to know, it is necessary to apply. It’s not enough to ask, it is necessary to do it.

2) A person needs what he/she does not know and cannot use what he/she knows.

3) There is no past that we can longingly bring back. There is an eternal present that builds and creates newer and better things than the past.

4) Everyone wants to be someone; Nobody wants to grow up.

5) It is a big mistake to see yourself too much or too little.

6) A talent occurs in tranquility, a character in the world’s storms.

7) If you treat an individual as he/she is, he/she will stay as he/she is. But if you treat him as he/she ought to be and could be, he/she will grow into what he/she ought to be, or has the potential to be.

8) Unless one loves something, one cannot learn to understand it.

9) The worst thing that can happen to a person is not to be alone; Living with people who will make you feel lonely.

10) I’ve known happy people who were happy just because they were what they were. And they were at peace because they never rebelled.

11) Of course, the road would be much more convenient and shorter if there were no mountains, but once there is, then it is necessary to overcome it.

12) A person should listen to a piece of music every day, read a good poem, see a beautiful painting, and, if possible, say a few logical sentences.

13) What is not started today will not be finished tomorrow.

14) People who do what they believe in never run out of energy.

15) The failing sides of perfect people are more noticeable.

16) As hunger is the best spice, fatigue is the best sleeping pill.

17) We can be sure of our knowledge only when we know little. Doubt increases as knowledge increases.

18) Some imperfections are necessary for human existence. We wouldn’t like it if some of the strange features of our old friends were gone.

19) If you want a wise answer, you must ask wise questions.

20) Those who are not involved in the solution become a part of the problem.

21) Thinking is easy. Doing is difficult. The most challenging thing is doing whatever is on our minds in the world.

22) A useless life is an early death.

23) We like to look to the future because we want to shape the events that are flying shapelessly in front of us as we wish.

24) Adapting to a sick society does not mean being healthy.

25) Do you want the compass to guide you? So protect it from the magnets next to it.

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