I don’t need a friend who changes when I change and who nods when I nod; my shadow does that much better."
Happiness is a state of activity."
You know, Bertha,’ she said after a pause, ‘in this world it is very difficult to know what to do. One struggles to know good from evil, but really they’re often so very much alike. I always think those people fortunate who are content to stand, without question, by the Ten Commandments, knowing exactly how to conduct themselves and propped up by the hope of Paradise on the one hand and by the fear of a cloven-footed devil with pincers on the other. But we who answer Why to the crude Thou shalt not are like sailors on a wintry sea without a compass: reason and instinct say one thing and convention says another; but the worst of it is that one’s conscience has been reared on the Decalogue and fostered on hell-fire, and one’s conscience has the last word. I daresay it’s cowardly, but it’s certainly discreet, to take it into consideration; it’s like lobster salad: it’s not immoral to eat it, but you will very likely have indigestion. One has to be very sure of oneself to go against the ordinary view of things, and if one isn’t, perhaps it’s better not to run any risks, but just to walk along the same secure old road as the common herd. It’s not exhilarating, it’s not brave, and it’s rather dull; but it’s eminently safe."
Loneliness is the human condition. Cultivate it. The way it tunnels into you allows your soul room to grow. Never expect to outgrow loneliness. Never hope to find people who will understand you, someone to fill that space. An intelligent, sensitive person is the exception, the very great exception. If you expect to find people who will understand you, you will grow murderous with disappointment. The best you’ll ever do is to understand yourself, know what it is that you want, and not let the cattle stand in your way."