A hydrogen atom in a cell at the end of my nose was once part of an elephant's trunk. A carbon atom in my cardiac muscle was once in the tail of a dinosaur.— Jostein Gaarder
The most competitive Jostein Gaarder quotes that will transform you to a better person
Life is both sad and solemn. We are led into a wonderful world, we meet one another here, greet each other---and wander together for a brief moment. Then we lose each other and disappear as suddenly and unreasonably as we arrived.
Health is the natural condition. When sickness occurs, it is a sign that Nature has gone off course because of a physical or mental imbalance. The road to health for everyone is through moderation, harmony, and a 'sound mind in a sound body'.
Wasn’t it extraordinary to be in the world right now, wandering around in a wonderful adventure!
An answer is always on the stretch of road that is behind you.
Only a question can point the way forward.
We are thrown together with a sprinkling of stardust.
Athens is like a sluggish horse, and I am the gadfly trying to sting it into life.
Over the entrance to the temple at Delphi was a famous inscription: KNOW THYSELF! It reminded visitors that man must never believe himself to be more than mortal - and that no man can escape his destiny.
It is different for us mortals. We are the ones who become old and grey. We are the ones who become worn at the seams and disappear. But not our dreams. They can live on in other people even after we have gone.
And although I have seen nothing but black crows in my life, it doesn't mean that there's no such thing as a white crow. Both for a philosopher and for a scientist it can be important not to reject the possibility of finding a white crow. You might almost say that hunting for 'the white crow' is science's principal task.
Wisest is she who knows she does not know.
I've nothing against eye make-up and lipstick.
But the fact is that we’re actually living on a planet in space. For me that’s an extraordinary thought. It’s mind-boggling just to think about the existence of space at all. But there are girls who can’t see the universe for eye liner.
Hegel said that `truth` is subjective, thus rejecting the existence of any `truth` above or beyond human reason. All knowledge is human knowledge.
Ladies and Gentlemen...we are floating in Space!
Every single morning I wake with a bang,' he said.
'It's as though the fact that I am alive is injected into me; I am a character in a fairytale, bursting with life.
But understanding will always require some effort.
You probably wouldn't admire a friend who was good at everything if it cost her no effort.
People are, generally speaking, either dead certain or totally indifferent.
The stupidest thing she knew was for people to act like they knew all about the things they knew absolutely nothing about.
As long as we are children, we have the ability to experience things around us--but then we grow used to the world. To grow up is to get drunk on sensory experience.
When you realize there is something you don't understand, then you're generally on the right path to understanding all kinds of things.
As a Roman philosopher, Cicero, said of him a few hundred years later, Socrates 'called philosophy down from the sky and established her in the towns and introduced her into homes and forced her to investigate life, ethics, good and evil.
Then you have a big problem, because a human is a thinking animal.
If you don't think, you're not really a human.
Life is like a huge lottery in which only the winning tickets are visible.
We do not believe in the notion of God's chosen people.
We laugh at this people's fancies and weep over its misdeeds. To act as God's chosen people is not only stupid and arrogant, but a crime against humanity. We call it racism.
We can't own each other's past. The questioin is whether we have a future together.
going only part of the way is not the same as going the wrong way
It was all too easy to make things up, it was like skating on thin ice, it was like doing dainty pirouettes on a brittle crust over water thousands of fathoms deep.
Life consists of a long chain of coincidences.
If we don't know where we are going, it can be helpful to know where we come from.
But all fairytales have rules, and perhaps it’s their rules that actually distinguish one fairytale from the other. These rules never need to be understood. They only need to be followed. If not, what they promise won’t come true.
Kierkegaard also said that truth is `subjective`.
By this he did not mean it doesn't matter what we think or believe. He meant that the really important truths are personal. Only these truths are `true for me`.
To prove religious faith by human reason is rationalistic claptrap.
A joker is a little fool who is different from everyone else.
He's not a club, diamond, heart, or spade. He's not an eight or a nine, a king or a jack. He is an outsider. He is placed in the same pack as the other cards, but he doesn't belong there. Therefore, he can be removed without anybody missing him.
But she’d managed to find her way into our reality, perhaps because she had an important mission here, perhaps because she was here to save us from what people call the monotony of life.
I believe there is something of the divine mystery in everything that exists.
We can see it sparkle in a sunflower or a poppy. We sense more of the unfathomable mystery in a butterfly that flutters from a twig--or in a goldfish swimming in a bowl. But we are closest to God in our own soul. Only there can we become one with the greatest mystery of life. In truth, at very rare moments we can experience that we ourselves are that divine mystery.
If just one of [those people] experiences life as a crazy adventure--and I mean that he, or she, experiences this every single day... Then he or she is a joker in a pack of cards.
The soul yearns to fly home on the wings of love to the world of ideas.
It longs to be freed from the chains of the body.
A Russian cosmonaut and a Russian brain surgeon were once discussing Christianity. The brain surgeon was a Christian, but the cosmonaut wasn’t. ‘I have been in outer space many times,’ bragged the cosmonaut, ‘but I have never seen any angels.’ The brain surgeon stared in amazement, but then he said, ‘And I have operated on many intelligent brains, but I have never seen a single thought.
Life is short for those who are truly able to understand that one day the entire world will come to a complete end. Not everyone is capable of that. Not everyone has the ability to comprehend what going away for all eternity really implies. There are too many distractions, hour by hour, minute by minute, to hinder such an understanding.
We are the living planet!
All beauty that surrounds us must one day perish.
When we look up at the sky, we are trying to find the way to ourselves.
There exists a world. In terms of probability this borders on the impossible. It would have been far more likely if, by chance, there was nothing at all. Then, at least, no one would have began asking why there was nothing.
The question of whether a thing is right or wrong, good or bad, must always be considered in relation to a persons needs.
The rearing of children is considered too important to be left to the individual and should be the responsibility of the state.
The only thing we require to be good philosophers is the faculty of wonder.
Maybe we can comprehend a flower or an insect, but we can never comprehend ourselves. Even less can we expect to comprehend the universe.
Let me put it more precisely: The ability to give birth is a natural characteristic. In the same way, everybody can grasp philosophical truths if they just use their innate reason.
Acting responsibly is not a matter of strengthening our reason but of deepening our feelings for the welfare of others.
He could very likely have appealed for leniency.
At least he could have saved his life by agreeing to leave Athens. But had he done this he would not have been Socrates. He valued his conscience--and the truth-- higher than life.