„As small as a world as large as alone.“

"maggie and milly and molly and may" in Complete Poems: 1904-1962
Variant: may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone.
Context: milly befriended a stranded star
whose rays five languid fingers were;and molly was chased by a horrible thing
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles:and may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone for whatever we lose (like a you or a me)
it's always ourselves we find in the sea

Adopted from Wikiquote. Last update May 22, 2020. History
E.E. Cummings photo
E.E. Cummings207
American poet 1894 - 1962

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„as small as a world and as large as alone
For whatever we lose(like a you or a me)
it’s always ourselves we find in the sea“

—  E.E. Cummings American poet 1894 - 1962

Variant: For whatever we lose (like a you or a me),
It's always our self we find in the sea.
Source: 100 Selected Poems

„All states in the world, large or small, are cities of Heaven, and all people, young or old, honourable or humble, are its subjects“

—  Mozi Chinese political philosopher and religious reformer of the Warring States period -470 - -391 BC

Book 1; On the necessity of standards
Mozi
Context: All states in the world, large or small, are cities of Heaven, and all people, young or old, honourable or humble, are its subjects; for they all graze oxen and sheep, feed dogs and pigs, and prepare clean wine and cakes to sacrifice to Heaven. Does this not mean that Heaven claims all and accepts offerings from all? Since Heaven does claim all and accepts offerings from all, what then can make us say that it does not desire men to love and benefit one another? Hence those who love and benefit others Heaven will bless. Those who hate and harm others Heaven will curse, for it is said that he who murders the innocent will be visited by misfortune. How else can we explain the fact that men, murdering each other, will be cursed by Heaven? Thus we are certain that Heaven desires to have men love and benefit one another and abominates to have them hate and harm one another

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Fukuzawa Yukichi photo

„The world is large.“

—  Fukuzawa Yukichi Japanese author, writer, teacher, translator, entrepreneur and journalist who founded Keio University 1835 - 1901

Source: The Autobiography of Fukuzawa Yukichi (1897), Ch. XV.

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„I believe that through discipline, though not through discipline alone, we can achieve serenity, and a certain small but precious measure of the freedom from the accidents of incarnation, and charity, and that detachment which preserves the world which it renounces.“

—  Robert Oppenheimer American theoretical physicist and professor of physics 1904 - 1967

Letter to his brother Frank (12 March 1932), published in Robert Oppenheimer : Letters and Recollections (1995) edited by Alice Kimball Smith, p. 155
Context: I believe that through discipline, though not through discipline alone, we can achieve serenity, and a certain small but precious measure of the freedom from the accidents of incarnation, and charity, and that detachment which preserves the world which it renounces. I believe that through discipline we can learn to preserve what is essential to our happiness in more and more adverse circumstances, and to abandon with simplicity what would else have seemed to us indispensable; that we come a little to see the world without the gross distortion of personal desire, and in seeing it so, accept more easily our earthly privation and its earthly horror — But because I believe that the reward of discipline is greater than its immediate objective, I would not have you think that discipline without objective is possible: in its nature discipline involves the subjection of the soul to some perhaps minor end; and that end must be real, if the discipline is not to be factitious. Therefore I think that all things which evoke discipline: study, and our duties to men and to the commonwealth, war, and personal hardship, and even the need for subsistence, ought to be greeted by us with profound gratitude, for only through them can we attain to the least detachment; and only so can we know peace.

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„The created World is but a small Parenthesis in Eternity.“

—  Thomas Browne, book Christian Morals

Part III, Section XXIX
Christian Morals (first pub. post. 1716)

Rainer Maria Rilke photo

„I am much too alone in this world, yet not alone enough.“

—  Rainer Maria Rilke Austrian poet and writer 1875 - 1926

Number 2 (as translated by Cliff Crego)
I am much too alone in this world, yet not alone enough
to truly consecrate the hour.
I am much too small in this world, yet not small enough
to be to you just object and thing,
dark and smart.
I want my free will and want it accompanying
the path which leads to action;
and want during times that beg questions,
where something is up,
to be among those in the know,
or else be alone.
(as translated by Annemarie S. Kidder)
Das Stunden-Buch (The Book of Hours) (1905)
Source: Rilke's Book of Hours: Love Poems to God
Context: I am too alone in the world, and yet not alone enough
to make every hour holy.
I am too small in the world, and yet not tiny enough
just to stand before you like a thing,
dark and shrewd.
I want my will, and I want to be with my will
as it moves towards deed;
and in those quiet, somehow hesitating times,
when something is approaching,
I want to be with those who are wise
or else alone.

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„There is an eternal antagonism of interest between the individual and the world at large.“

—  Samuel Butler novelist 1835 - 1902

The Individual and the World
The Note-Books of Samuel Butler (1912), Part I - Lord, What is Man?
Context: There is an eternal antagonism of interest between the individual and the world at large. The individual will not so much care how much he may suffer in this world provided he can live in men’s good thoughts long after he has left it. The world at large does not so much care how much suffering the individual may either endure or cause in this life, provided he will take himself clean away out of men’s thoughts, whether for good or ill, when he has left it.

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„Money alone sets all the world in motion.“

—  Publilio Siro Latin writer

Maxim 656
Sentences, The Moral Sayings of Publius Syrus, a Roman Slave

Leon Trotsky photo

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