True beauty is something that attacks, overpowers, robs, and finally destroys.

— Yukio Mishima

The most competitive Yukio Mishima quotes that are new and everybody is talking about

The highest point at which human life and art meet is in the ordinary.

To look down on the ordinary is to despise what you can't have. Show me a man who fears being ordinary, and I'll show you a man who is not yet a man.

82

Young people get the foolish idea that what is new for them must be new for everybody else too. No matter how unconventional they get, they're just repeating what others before them have done.

81

He had never looked forward to the wisdom and other vaunted benefits of old age.

Would he be able to die young—and if possible free of all pain? A graceful death—as a richly patterned kimono, thrown carelessly across a polished table, slides unobtrusively down into the darkness of the floor beneath. A death marked by elegance.

66

By means of microscopic observation and astronomical projection the lotus flower can become the foundation for an entire theory of the universe and an agent whereby we may perceive Truth.

60

For an artist to do creative work, he needs at once physical health and some physiomental ill health. He needs both serenity and gloom.

59

If we look on idly, heaven and earth will never be joined.

To join heaven and earth, some decisive deed of purity is necessary. To accomplish so resolute an action, you have to stake your life, giving no thought to personal gain or loss.

48

An ugliness unfurled in the moonlight and soft shadow and suffused the whole world. If I were an amoeba, he thought, with an infinitesimal body, I could defeat ugliness. A man isn’t tiny or giant enough to defeat anything.

46

Suddenly the full long wail of a ship's horn surged through the open window and flooded the dim room—a cry of boundless, dark, demanding grief; pitch-black and glabrous as a whale's back and burdened with all the passions of the tides, the memory of voyages beyond counting, the joys, the humiliations: the sea was screaming.

34

As long as you know I am waiting, take your time flowers of the spring.

32

A man isn't tiny or giant enough to defeat anything.

28

Again and again, the cicada's untiring cry pierced the sultry summer air like a needle at work on thick cotton cloth.

23

The instant that the blade tore open his flesh, the bright disk of the sun soared up and exploded behind his eyelids.

21

About Yukio Mishima

Quotes 90 sayings
Nationality Japanese
Profession Author
Birthday October 16

a samurai is a total human being, whereas a man who is completely absorbed in his technical skill has degenerated into a ‘function’, one cog in a machine.

20

Possessing by letting go of things was a secret of ownership unknown to youth.

18

The cynicism that regards hero worship as comical is always shadowed by a sense of physical inferiority

11

History knew the truth. History was the most inhuman product of humanity.It scooped up the whole of human will and, like the goddess Kali in Calcutta, dripped blood from its mouth as it bit and crunched.

10

Human life is limited but I would like to live forever.

8

Beyond doubt, there was a certain splendor in pain, which bore a deep affinity to the splendor that lies hidden within strength.

7

The past does not only draw us back to the past.

There are certain memories of the past that have strong steel springs and, when we who live in the present touch them, they are suddenly stretched taut and then they propel us into the future.

6

Better to be caught in sudden, complete catastrophe than to be gnawed by the cancer of imagination.

6

I cried sobbingly until at last those visions reeking with blood came to comfort me. And then I surrendered myself to them, to those deplorably brutal visions, my most intimate friends.

6

The most appropriate type of daily life for me was a day-by-day world destruction; peace was the most difficult and abnormal state to live in.

5

Abruptly he thrust his snow-drenched leather gloves against my cheeks.

I dodged. A raw carnal feeling blazed up within me, branding my cheeks. I felt myself staring at him with crystal clear eyes... From that time on I was in love with Omi.

4

The images which the [press] photographer has filtered from reality, whether particular events or the anguish of human reactions to them, already bear a stamp of authenticity which the photographer is powerless to alter by one jot or tittle; the meaning of the objects, by a process of purification, itself becomes the theme of the work.

4

We live in an age in which there is no heroic death.

3

Mine was the unbearable jealousy a cultured pearl must feel toward a genuine one. Or can there be such a thing in this world as a man who is jealous of the woman who loves him, precisely because of her love?

3

Within those confining walls, teachers - a bunch of men all armed with the same information - gave the same lectures every year from the same notebooks and every year at the same point in the textbooks made the same jokes.

3

I seemed like a baby bird keeping its truly innocent animal lusts hidden under its wing. I was being tempted, not by the desire of possession, but simply by unadorned temptation itself.

3

The mind, by its very nature, persistently tries to live forever, resisting age and attempting to give itself a form... . When a person passes his prime and his life begins to lose true vigor and charm, his mind starts functioning as if it were another form of life; it imitates what life does, eventually doing what life cannot do.

2

Was I ignorant, then, when I was seventeen? I think not.

I knew everything. A quarter-century's experience of life since then has added nothing to what I knew. The one difference is that at seventeen I had no 'realism'.

1

According to Eshin's Essentials of Salvation, the Ten Pleasures are but a drop in the ocean when compared to the joys of the Pure Land.

1

It is a common failing of childhood to think that if one makes a hero out of a demon the demon will be satisfied.

0

The period of childhood is a stage on which time and space become entangled.

0

Nobody even imagines how well one can lie about the state of one’s own heart.

0

Just let matters slide. How much better to accept each sweet drop of the honey that was Time, than to stoop to the vulgarity latent in every decision. However grave the matter at hand might be, if one neglected it for long enough, the act of neglect itself would begin to affect the situation, and someone else would emerge as an ally. Such was Count Ayakura's version of political theory.

0

There's a huge seal called 'impossibility' pasted all over this world.

And don't ever forget that we're the only ones who can tear it off once and for all.

0

Pain, I came to feel, might well prove to be the sole proof of the persistence of consciousness within the flesh, the sole physical expression of consciousness. As my body acquired muscle, and in turn strength, there was gradually born within me a tendency towards the positive acceptance of pain, and my interest in physical suffering deepened.

0

It seems to me that before the photograph can exist as art it must, by its very nature choose whether it is to be a record or a testimony.

0

Isao had never felt that he might want to be a woman.

He had never wished for anything else but to be a man, live in a manly way, die a manly death. To be thus a man was to give constant proof of one's manliness-to be more a man today than yesterday, more a man tomorrow than today. To be a man was to forge ever upward toward the peak of manhood, there to die amid the white snows of that peak.

0

Human beings - they go on being born and dying, dying and being born. It's kind of boring, isn't it?

0

if the world changed, i could not exist, and if i changed, the world could not exist

0

Anything can become excusable when seen from the standpoint of the result

0

In the pale light of daybreak the gravestones looked like so many white sails of boats anchored in a busy harbor. They were sails that would never again be filled with wind, sails that, too long unused and heavily drooping, had been turned into stone just as they were. The boats' anchors had been thrust so deeply into the dark earth that they could never again be raised.

0

When silence is prolonged over a certain period of time, it takes on new meaning.

0

There is no virtue in curiosity. In fact, it might be the most immoral desire a man can possess.

0

..and certain that life consisted of a few simple signals and decisions; that death took root at the moment of birth and man’s only recourse thereafter was to water and tend it; that propagation was a fiction; consequently, society was a fiction too; that fathers and teachers, by virtue of being fathers and teachers, were guilty of a grievous sin.

0

I want to make a poem of my life.

0

We tend to suffer from the illusion that we are capable of dying for a belief or theory. What Hagakure is insisting is that even in merciless death, a futile death that knows neither flower nor fruit has dignity as the death of a human being. If we value so highly the dignity of life, how can we not also value the dignity of death? No death may be called futile.

0

I had no taste for defeat - much less victory - without a fight.

0
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