Quotes about joy

A collection of quotes on the topic of joy.

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Seneca the Younger photo

„Virtue alone affords everlasting and peace-giving joy“

—  Seneca the Younger Roman Stoic philosopher, statesman, and dramatist -4 - 65 BC

Letter XXVII
Epistulae Morales ad Lucilium (Moral Letters to Lucilius)
Original: (la) Sola virtus praestat gaudium perpetuum, securum; etiam si quid obstat, nubium modo intervenit, quae infra feruntur nec umquam diem vincunt.
Context: Virtue alone affords everlasting and peace-giving joy; even if some obstacle arise, it is but like an intervening cloud, which floats beneath the sun but never prevails against it.

Emma Goldman photo

„Love, the strongest and deepest element in all life, the harbinger of hope, of joy, of ecstasy; love, the defier of all laws, of all conventions; love, the freest, the most powerful moulder of human destiny; how can such an all-compelling force be synonymous with that poor little State and Church-begotten weed, marriage?
Free love? As if love is anything but free!“

—  Emma Goldman anarchist known for her political activism, writing, and speeches 1868 - 1940

"Marriage and Love" in Anarchism and Other Essays (1911)
Context: Love, the strongest and deepest element in all life, the harbinger of hope, of joy, of ecstasy; love, the defier of all laws, of all conventions; love, the freest, the most powerful moulder of human destiny; how can such an all-compelling force be synonymous with that poor little State and Church-begotten weed, marriage?
Free love? As if love is anything but free! Man has bought brains, but all the millions in the world have failed to buy love. Man has subdued bodies, but all the power on earth has been unable to subdue love. Man has conquered whole nations, but all his armies could not conquer love. Man has chained and fettered the spirit, but he has been utterly helpless before love. High on a throne, with all the splendor and pomp his gold can command, man is yet poor and desolate, if love passes him by. And if it stays, the poorest hovel is radiant with warmth, with life and color. Thus love has the magic power to make of a beggar a king. Yes, love is free; it can dwell in no other atmosphere.

Bob Marley photo

„Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful. There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby. Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon. You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.“

—  Bob Marley Jamaican singer, songwriter, musician 1945 - 1981

Carl Sagan photo

„Consider again that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar", every "supreme leader", every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there — on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds.
Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.
The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.
It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.“

—  Carl Sagan, book Pale Blue Dot

Source: Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space (1994), p. 8, Supplemental image at randi.org http://www.randi.org/images/122801-BlueDot.jpg

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow photo
Josip Broz Tito photo
Franz Schubert photo
Frederick Buechner photo

„The place where God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger coincide.“

—  Frederick Buechner Poet, novelist, short story writer, theologian 1926

Wishful Thinking, p. 95
Variant: Vocation is the place where our deep gladness meets the world's deep need.
Source: Wishful Thinking: A Theological ABC (1973)

Megan Marie Hart photo

„Jewish history is full of suffering and terrible sorrow. But it is also full of immeasurable joy. We honor the suffering through remembrance. We honor the joy through celebration.“

—  Megan Marie Hart American opera singer 1983

From "Persönliche Notiz", in the recital program for the opening event of festival year "100 days, 1700 years – Jewish life in Darmstadt". https://www.darmstadt-tourismus.de/en/visit/events/events/artikel/detail/juedisches-leben-in-darmstadt-festjahr-100-tage-1700-jahre.html Liedgut – Famous Musicians of Jewish Origin (2021), p. 2 http://web.archive.org/web/20210902070031/https://staatstheater-darmstadt.s3.eu-central-1.amazonaws.com/produktion/programmbuch/994?response-content-disposition=inline%3B%20filename%3D%22210831_PH_Liedgut_web.pdf%22&response-cache-control=public&X-Amz-Content-Sha256=UNSIGNED-PAYLOAD&X-Amz-Algorithm=AWS4-HMAC-SHA256&X-Amz-Credential=AKIAUCI3T77LT4YWGJ7O%2F20210902%2Feu-central-1%2Fs3%2Faws4_request&X-Amz-Date=20210902T070031Z&X-Amz-SignedHeaders=host&X-Amz-Expires=600&X-Amz-Signature=d36591acd16fc78b29808a50bfaf03d75dc5d97aaab1945548d8ad24040d4a9d.
Original: (de) Jüdische Geschichte ist voll von Leiden und schrecklichem Kummer. Aber sie ist auch voll von unermesslicher Freude. Wir ehren das Leiden durch Erinnern. Wir ehren die Freude durch Feiern.

Isa Bowman photo
William Blake photo
José Rizal photo

„Filipinos don't realize that victory is the child of struggle, that joy blossoms from suffering, and redemption is a product of sacrifice.“

—  José Rizal Filipino writer, ophthalmologist, polyglot and nationalist 1861 - 1896

"Como se gobiernan las Filipinas" (How one governs in the Philippines), published in La Solidaridad (15 December 1890)

Keanu Reeves photo
Leonid Feodorov photo
Mwanandeke Kindembo photo

„Slowly the joy of flower and bird
Did like a tide withdraw;
And in the heaven a silent star
Smiled on me, infinitely far.“

—  Francis William Bourdillon British poet 1852 - 1921

" The Chantry Of The Cherubim http://www.bartleby.com/236/219.html" in The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse (1917) by D. H. S. Nicholson.
Context: p>I walk as one unclothed of flesh,
I wash my spirit clean;
I see old miracles afresh,
And wonders yet unseen.
I will not leave Thee till Thou give
Some word whereby my soul may live!I listened — but no voice I heard;
I looked — no likeness saw;
Slowly the joy of flower and bird
Did like a tide withdraw;
And in the heaven a silent star
Smiled on me, infinitely far.</p

„Yet came there never voice nor sign;
But through my being stole
Sense of a Universe divine,
And knowledge of a soul
Perfected in the joy of things,
The star, the flower, the bird that sings.“

—  Francis William Bourdillon British poet 1852 - 1921

"The Chantry Of The Cherubim" in The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse (1917) by D. H. S. Nicholson.
Context: p>I buoyed me on the wings of dream,
Above the world of sense;
I set my thought to sound the scheme,
And fathom the Immense;
I tuned my spirit as a lute
To catch wind-music wandering mute.Yet came there never voice nor sign;
But through my being stole
Sense of a Universe divine,
And knowledge of a soul
Perfected in the joy of things,
The star, the flower, the bird that sings.Nor I am more, nor less, than these;
All are one brotherhood;
I and all creatures, plants, and trees,
The living limbs of God;
And in an hour, as this, divine,
I feel the vast pulse throb in mine.</p

David Almond photo
Hildegard of Bingen photo