Suicide Quotes

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Suicide Suicide by Édouard Levé
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Suicide Quotes (showing 1-30 of 66)
“You were said to have died of suffering. But you died because you searched for happiness at the risk of finding the void.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“You were not surprised to find yourself ill adapted to the world, but it did surprise you that the world had produced a being who now lived in it as a foreigner. Do plants commit suicide? Do animals die of helplessness? They either function or disappear. You were perhaps a weak link, an accidental evolutionary dead end, a temporary anomaly not destined to burgeon again.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“You did not fear death. You stepped in its path, but without really desiring it: how can one desire something one doesn’t know? You didn’t deny life but affirmed your taste for the unknown, betting that if something existed on the other side, it would be better than here.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“Your life was a hypothesis. Those who die old are made of the past. Thinking of them, one thinks of what they have done. Thinking of you, one thinks of what you could have become. You were, and you will remain, made up of possibilities.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“You used to believe that with age you would become less unhappy, because you then would have reasons to be sad. When you were still young, your suffering was inconsolable because you believed it to be unfounded.

Your suicide was scandalously beautiful…

You died because you searched for happiness at the risk of finding the void. We shall have to wait for death before we can know what it is that you found. Or before leaving off knowing anything at all, if it is to be silence and emptiness that awaits us.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“Since you seldom spoke, you were rarely wrong. You seldom spoke because you seldom went out. If you did go out, you listened and watched. Now, since you no longer speak, you will always be right. In truth, you do still speak: through those, like me, who bring you back to life, and interrogate you. We hear your responses and admire their wisdom. If the facts turned out to contradict your counsel, we blame ourselves for having misinterpreted you. Yours are the truths, ours are the errors.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“When you were awake, stretched out in your bed in the dark, shutters drawn, your thoughts would flow freely. They would grow obscure when you got up and opened the curtains. The violence of daylight would efface the nocturnal clarity. In the daytime, people were barriers, dividing you up, preventing you from hearing what you listened to at night: the voice of your brain.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“You are like the actor who, at the end of the play, with a final word, reveals that he is a different character than the one he appeared to be playing.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“And so you worried about not remembering what happened in between the things you wrote down. You had lived those moments too. Where had they gone?”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“The last time I saw you, you were wearing a white cotton shirt. You were standing upright with your wife on the lawn, in the sunlight, in front of the chateau, at my brother’s wedding. You shared in the enthusiasm of the ceremony. For my part, I felt distanced from it. I didn’t recognize my family in this mundane get-together. You didn’t seem put off by the bourgeois ceremony, or by my brother’s choice to have his love approved by third parties, even when these were distant third parties. You didn’t have the sad and absent look you normally took on at public gatherings. You smiled, watching the people, a little tipsy from the wine and the sun, chatting on the large lawn between the white stone façade and the two-hundred-year-old cedar tree. I often wondered, after your death, if that smile, the last one I saw from you, was mocking, or if instead it was the kindly smile of someone who knew that soon he would no longer partake in earthly pleasures. You didn’t regret leaving these behind, but neither were you averse to enjoying them a little longer.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“You couldn’t have been said to dance, exactly. Despite the music sounding around you, bodies being carried away by the whirling bass, it didn’t get inside you. You used to trace out the steps, but you were mimicking dancing, rather than doing it. You would dance alone. When a look crossed yours, you’d smile like someone caught off guard in an absurd situation.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“This selfishness of your suicide displeased you. But, all things considered, the lull of death won out over life’s painful commotion.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“You didn’t like to travel. You rarely went abroad. You would spend your time in your bedroom. It seemed useless to you to travel for miles in order to stay in a place less comfortable than your own.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“You spoke to strangers for hours. Afterward you walked the streets in search of other cafes, but they were closed. You stretched out on the park benches of a square near the Gare Saint-Lazare, and you remarked on the shape of the clouds. At six o’clock you had breakfast. At seven you took the first train home. When, the next day, your friends repeated to you the words you had spoken to strangers in the cafe, you remembered nothing of them. It was as though someone else inside you had spoken. You recognized neither your words, nor your thoughts, but you liked them better than you would have if you had remembered saying them. Often all it took was for someone else to speak your own words back to you for you to like them.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“You had felt idle in this city through which you had paced only to kill time. But the emptiness that you believed yourself confronted with was an illusion: you had filled those moments with sensations all the more powerful in that nothing and no one had distracted you from them.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“When you traveled with company, the country would shrink away; your companion would become the subject of your voyage as much as the country itself. As for group travel, the country would end up being the silent host whose presence one forgets like one does an overly timid guest, the principal subject becoming the backdrop.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
tags: travel
“Until the age of twelve I thought I was gifted with the power to shape the future, but this power was a crushing burden, it manifested itself in the form of threats, I had to take just so many steps before I got to the end of the sidewalk or else my parents would die in a car accident, I had to close the door thinking of some favorable outcome, for example passing a test, or else I’d fail, I had to turn off the light not thinking about my mother getting raped, or that would happen, one day I couldn’t stand having to close the door a hundred times before I could think of something good, or to spend fifteen minutes turning off the light the right way, I decided enough was enough, the world could fall apart, I didn’t want to spend my life saving other people, that night I went to bed sure the next day would bring the apocalypse, nothing happened, I was relieved but a little bit disappointed to discover I had no power.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“This was perhaps what you feared: to become inert in a body that still breathes, drinks, and feeds itself. To commit suicide in slow motion.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“In the midst of this utopia, which only your fellow lone voyagers would perceive, you used to transgress society’s rules unknowingly, and no one would hold you accountable for it. You would mistakenly enter private residences, go to concerts to which you had not been invited, eat at community banquets where you could only guess the community’s identity when they started giving speeches. Had you behaved like this in your own country, you would have been taken for a liar or a fool. But the improbable ways of a foreigner are accepted. Far from your home, you used to taste the pleasure of being mad without being alienated, of being an imbecile without renouncing your intelligence, of being an impostor without culpability.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
tags: travel
“A self excused is a self accused.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“While traveling, a new destination would seem more desirable to you than wherever you were, right up to the moment you got there and found that your dissatisfaction had followed you: the mirage had shifted to the next stop-over point. Yet your preceding stops would become more attractive as you got further away from them. For you, the past would be forever improving, the future would draw you forward, but the present would weigh you down.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“Time is lacking for me
Space is enough for me
The void attracts me”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“You were not surprised to feel yourself ill adapted to the world, but it did surprise you that the world had produced a being who now lived in it as a foreigner. Do plants commit suicide? Do animals die of hopelessness? They either function or disappear. You were perhaps a weak link, an accidental evolutionary dead end, a temporary anomaly not destined to burgeon again.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“Far from your home, you used to taste the pleasure of being mad without being alienated, of being an imbecile without renouncing your intelligence, of being an impostor without culpability. You”
Edouard Levé, Suicide
“Die Worte seien schöner, wenn man sie nur halb verstünde.”
Édouard Levé, Selbstmord
“A dictionary resembles the world more than a novel does, because the world is not a coherent sequence of actions but a constellation of things perceived. It is looked at, unrelated things congregate, and geographic proximity gives them meaning. If events follow each other, they are believed to be a story. But in a dictionary, time doesn't exist: ABC is neither more nor less chronological than BCA. To portray your life in order would be absurd: I remember you at random. My brain resurrects you through stochastic details, like picking marbles out of a bag.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
tags: memory
“It was nighttime by day, a negative version of darkness.”
Edouard Levé, Suicide
“Tu ne t'étonnais pas de te sentir inadapté au monde, mais tu t'étonnais que le monde ait produit un être qui y vive en étranger. Les plantes se suicident-elles ? les animaux meurent-ils de désespoir ? Ils fonctionnent ou disparaissent. Tu étais peut-être un chaînon défaillant, une piste accidentelle de l'évolution. Une anomalie temporaire non destinée à refleurir.”
Édouard Levé, Suicide
“Your life was a hypothesis. Those who die old are made of the past. Thinking of them, one thinks of what they have done. Thinking of you, one thinks of what you could have become. You were, and you will remain, made up of possibilities. Your”
Edouard Levé, Suicide
“Only the living seem incoherent. Death closes the series of events that constitutes their lives. So we resign ourselves to finding a meaning for them. To refuse them this would amount to accepting that a life, and thus life itself, is absurd. Yours had not yet attained the coherence of things done. Your death gave it this coherence. Lev”
Édouard Levé, Suicide

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