Alain de Botton Alain de Botton > Quotes


Alain de Botton quotes (showing 31-60 of 384)

“Perhaps the easiest people to fall in love with are those about whom
we know nothing. Romances are never as pure as those we imagine during
long train journeys, as we secretly contemplate a beautiful person who is
gazing out of the window – a perfect love story interrupted only when the
beloved looks back into the carriage and starts up a dull conversation
about the excessive price of the on-board sandwiches with a neighbour or
blows her nose aggressively into a handkerchief.”
Alain de Botton, On Love
tags: love
“Must being in love always mean being in pain?”
Alain de Botton, On Love
“.. if you asked most people whether they believed in love or not, they’d probably say they didn’t. Yet that’s not necessarily what they truly think. It’s just the way they defend themselves against what they want. They believe in it, but pretend they don’t until they’re allowed to. Most people would throw away all their cynicism if they could. The majority just never gets the chance.”
Alain de Botton, On Love
“The largest part of what we call 'personality' is determined by how we've opted to defend ourselves against anxiety and sadness".”
Alain de Botton
“To be loved by someone is to realize how much they share the same needs that lie at the heart of our own attraction to them. Albert Camus suggested that we fall in love with people because, from the outside, they look so whole, physically whole and emotionally 'together' - when subjectively we feel dispersed and confused. We would not love if there were no lack within us, but we are offended by the discovery of a similar lack in the other. Expecting to find the answer, we find only the duplicate of our own problem.”
Alain de Botton, On Love
“The pleasure we derive from journeys is perhaps dependent more on the mindset with which we travel than on the destination we travel to.”
Alain de Botton, The Art of Travel
“Do you love me enough that I may be weak with you? Everyone loves strength, but do you love me for my weakness? That is the real test.”
Alain de Botton
tags: love
“Bitterness: anger that forgot where it came from.”
Alain de Botton
“You have to be quite heavily invested in someone to do them the honour of telling them you're annoyed with them.”
Alain de Botton
“Anyone who isn't embarrassed of who they were last year probably isn't learning enough.”
Alain de Botton
“Don't despair: despair suggests you are in total control and know what is coming. You don't - surrender to events with hope.”
Alain de Botton
“While a common reaction to seeing a thing of beauty is to want to buy it, our real desire may be not so much to own what we find beautiful as to lay permanent claim to the inner qualities it embodies.

Owning such an object may help us realise our ambition of absorbing the virtues to which it alludes, but we ought not to presume that those virtues will automatically or effortlessly begin to rub off on us through tenure. Endeavouring to purchase something we think beautiful may in fact be the most unimaginative way of dealing with the longing it excites in us, just as trying to sleep with someone may be the bluntest response to a feeling of love.

What we seek, at the deepest level, is inwardly to resemble, rather than physically possess, the objects and places that touch us through their beauty.”
Alain de Botton, The Architecture of Happiness
“What is a snob? A snob is anybody who takes a small part of you and uses that to come to a complete vision of who you are. That is snobbery.”
Alain de Botton
“There's a whole category of people who miss out by not allowing themselves to be weird enough.”
Alain de Botton
“Forgiveness requires a sense that bad behaviour is a sign of suffering rather than malice.”
Alain de Botton
“The finest proof of our loyalty toward one another was our monstrous disloyalties towards everyone else.”
Alain de Botton
“Everyone returns us to a different sense of ourselves, for we become a little of who they think we are.”
Alain de Botton, On Love
“To be shown love is to feel ourselves the object of concern: our presence is noted, our name is registered, our views are listened to, our failings are treated with indulgence and our needs are ministered to. And under such care, we flourish.”
Alain de Botton, Status Anxiety
tags: love
“It is perhaps sad books that best console us when we are sad, and to lonely service stations that we should drive when there is no one for us to hold or love.”
Alain de Botton, The Art of Travel
“We don't really learn anything properly until there is a problem, until we are in pain, until something fails to go as we had hoped ... We suffer, therefore we think.”
Alain de Botton, How Proust Can Change Your Life
“Feeling lost, crazy and desperate belongs to a good life as much as optimism, certainty and reason.”
Alain de Botton
“One's doing well if age improves even slightly one's capacity to hold on to that vital truism: "This too shall pass.”
Alain de Botton
“It is perhaps when our lives are at their most problematic that we are likely to be most receptive to beautiful things.”
Alain de Botton, The Architecture of Happiness
“The more familiar two people become, the more the language they speak together departs from that of the ordinary, dictionary-defined discourse. Familiarity creates a new language, an in-house language of intimacy that carries reference to the story the two lovers are weaving together and that cannot be readily understood by others.”
Alain de Botton, On Love
“One kind of good book should leave you asking: how did the author know that about me?”
Alain de Botton
“The longing for destiny is nowhere stronger than in our romantic life.”
Alain de Botton, On Love
“There is a longing for a return to a time without the need for choices, free of the regret at the inevitable loss that all choice (however wonderful) has entailed.”
Alain de Botton, On Love
“Because the rhythm of conversation makes no allowance for dead periods, because the presence of others calls for continuous responses, we are left to regret the inanity of what we say, and the missed opportunity of what we do not. ”
Alain de Botton, How Proust Can Change Your Life
“We each appear to hold within ourselves a range of divergent views as to our native qualities.. And amid such uncertainty, we typically turn to the wider world to settle the question of our significance.. we seem beholden to affections of others to endure ourselves.”
Alain de Botton, Status Anxiety
“Endeavoring to purchase something we think beautiful may in fact be the most unimaginative way of dealing with the longing it excites in us, just as trying to sleep with someone may be the bluntest response to a feeling of love.”
Alain de Botton, The Architecture of Happiness


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