Blaise Pascal Quotes
1. The heart has its reasons which reason knows not.
2. All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.
3. I have only made this letter longer because I have not had the time to make it shorter.
4. Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction.
5. I would prefer an intelligent hell to a stupid paradise.
6. People almost invariably arrive at their beliefs not on the basis of proof but on the basis of what they find attractive.
7. To make light of philosophy is to be a true philosopher.
8. Kind words don’t cost much. Yet they accomplish much.
9. You always admire what you really don’t understand.
10. I made this [letter] very long, because I did not have the leisure to make it shorter.
11. Curiosity is only vanity. We usually only want to know something so that we can talk about it.
12. I lay it down as a fact that if all men knew what others say of them, there would not be four friends in the world.
13. Truth is so obscure in these times, and falsehood so established, that, unless we love the truth, we cannot know it.
14. The heart has its reasons which reason knows nothing of… We know the truth not only by the reason, but by the heart.
15. All men seek happiness. This is without exception. Whatever different means they employ, they all tend to this end. The cause of some going to war, and of others avoiding it, is the same desire in both, attended with different views. The will never takes the least step but to this object. This is the motive of every action of every man, even of those who hang themselves.
16. When one does not love too much, one does not love enough.
17. The last thing one discovers in composing a work is what to put first.
18. We are generally the better persuaded by the reasons we discover ourselves than by those given to us by others.
19. Few friendships would survive if each one knew what his friend says of him behind his back
20. It is man’s natural sickness to believe that he possesses the truth.
21. Do you wish people to think well of you? Don’t speak well of yourself.
22. Dull minds are never either intuitive or mathematical.
23. Man’s sensitivity to the little things and insensitivity to the greatest are the signs of a strange disorder.
24. To ridicule philosophy is really to philosophize.
25. Little things comfort us because little things distress us.
26. The greater intellect one has, the more originality one finds in men. Ordinary persons find no difference between men.
27. Man is equally incapable of seeing the nothingness from which he emerges and the infinity in which he is engulfed.
28. If we submit everything to reason our religion will be left with nothing mysterious or supernatural. If we offend the principles of reason our religion will be absurd and ridiculous . . . There are two equally dangerous extremes: to exclude reason, to admit nothing but reason.
29. Clarity of mind means clarity of passion, too; this is why a great and clear mind loves ardently and sees distinctly what it loves.
30. Few men speak humbly of humility, chastely of chastity, skeptically of skepticism.
31. Love knows no limit to its endurance, no end to its trust, no fading of its hope; it can outlast anything. Love still stands when all else has fallen.
32. Belief is a wise wager. Granted that faith cannot be proved, what harm will come to you if you gamble on its truth and it proves false? If you gain, you gain all; if you lose, you lose nothing. Wager, then, without hesitation, that He exists.
33. There are only two kinds of men: the righteous who think they are sinners and the sinners who think they are righteous.
34. Can anything be stupider than that a man has the right to kill me because he lives on the other side of a river and his ruler has a quarrel with mine, though I have not quarrelled with him?
35. People are generally better persuaded by the reasons which they have themselves discovered than by those which have come into the mind of others.
36. Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness.
37. To understand is to forgive.
38. In difficult times carry something beautiful in your heart.
39. Justice without force is powerless; force without justice is tyrannical.
40. When I see the blind and wretched state of men, when I survey the whole universe in its deadness, and man left to himself with no light, as though lost in this corner of the universe without knowing who put him there, what he has to do, or what will become of him when he dies, incapable of knowing anything, I am moved to terror, like a man transported in his sleep to some terrifying desert island, who wakes up quite lost, with no means of escape. Then I marvel that so wretched a state does not drive people to despair.
41. Distraction is the only thing that consoles us for miseries and yet it is itself the greatest of our miseries.
42. Man is only a reed, the weakest in nature, but he is a thinking reed. There is no need for the whole universe to take up arms to crush him: a vapour, a drop of water is enough to kill him. but even if the universe were to crush him, man would still be nobler than his slayer, because he knows that he is dying and the advantage the universe has over him. The universe knows none of this.
43. There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of each man which cannot be satisfied by any created thing but only by God the Creator, made know through Jesus Christ.
44. Contradiction is not a sign of falsity, nor the lack of contradiction a sign of truth.
45. Nature has made all her truths independent of one another. Our art makes one dependent on the other.
46. And is it not obvious that, just as it is a crime to disturb the peace when truth reigns, it is also a crime to remain at peace when the truth is being destroyed?
47. Lust is the source of all our actions, and humanity.
48. The eternal silence of these infinite spaces terrifies me.
49. Nature is an infinite sphere whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere.
50. The last function of reason is to recognize that there are an infinity of things which surpass it.
51. All men’s miseries derive from not being able to sit quiet in a room alone.
52. Reason’s last step is the recognition that there are an infinite number of things which are beyond it.
53. The heart has reasons that reason cannot know.
54. Men seek rest in a struggle against difficulties; and when they have conquered these, rest becomes insufferable.
55. Even those who write against fame wish for the fame of having written well, and those who read their works desire the fame of having read them.
56. If God exists, not seeking God must be the gravest error imaginable. If one decides to sincerely seek for God and doesn’t find God, the lost effort is negligible in comparison to what is at risk in not seeking God in the first place.
57. Since we cannot know all there is to be known about anything, we ought to know a little about everything.
58. There is enough light for those who only desire to see, and enough obscurity for those who have a contrary disposition
59. Those honor nature well, who teach that she can speak on everything.
60. Man’s sensitivity to little things and insensitivity to the greatest things are marks of a strange disorder.