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Demian Quotes

20 of the best book quotes from Demian
  1. #1
    “We who bore the mark, felt no anxiety about the shape the future was to take. All of these faiths and teachings seemed to us already dead and useless. The only duty and destiny we acknowledged was that each one of us should become so completely himself, so utterly faithful to the active seed which nature planted within him, that in living out its growth he could be surprised by nothing unknown to come.”
  2. #2
    “Suddenly, a new image had risen up before me, a lofty and cherished image. And no need, no urge was as deep or as fervent within me as the craving to worship and admire. I gave her the name Beatrice….”
  3. #3
    “A stone had been dropped into the well, the well was my youthful soul. And for a very long time this matter of Cain, the fratricide, and the ‘mark’ formed the point of departure for all my attempts at comprehension, my doubts and my criticism.”
  4. #4
    “You knew all along that your sanctioned world was only half the world and you tried to suppress the second half the way the priests and teachers do. You won’t succeed. No one succeeds in this once he has begun to think.”
  5. #5
    “Perhaps you’ll need me again sometime, against Kromer or something. If you call me then I won’t come crudely, on horseback or by train. You’ll have to listen within yourself, then you will notice that I am within you.”
  6. #6
    “The inner, the essential line of our fate consists of such invisible experiences. Such fissures and rents consists of such invisible experiences. Such fissures and rents grow together again, heal and are forgotten, but in the most secret recesses they continue to live and bleed.”
  1. #7
    “For the first time in my life I tasted death, and death tasted bitter, for death is birthday, is fear and dread of some terrible renewal.”
  2. #8
    “Such fear can destroy us completely. You’ve got to get rid of it, you’ve simply got to, if you want to turn into someone decent.”
  3. #9
    “We have a wider scope, greater variety of choice, and wider interests than an animal. But we, too, are confined to a relatively narrow compass which we cannot break out of.”
  4. #10
    “That is the way leaves fall around a tree in autumn, a tree unaware of the rain running down its sides, of the sun or the frost, and of life gradually retreating inward. The tree does not die. It waits.”
  5. #11
    “I wanted only to try to live in accord with the prompting which came from my true self. Why was that so very difficult?”
  6. #12
    “I realize that some people will not believe that a child of little more than ten years is capable of having such feelings. My story is not intended for them. I am telling it to those who have a better knowledge of man.”

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  1. #13
    “I now lived within a fire of unsatisfied long, of tense expectancy that often drove me completely wild.”
  2. #14
    “I was in the hands of fate and it was useless to try to escape.”
  3. #15
    “That which is within you and directs your life knows already. It’s good to realize that within us there is someone who knows everything, wills everything, does everything better than we ourselves.”
  4. #16
    “Each man’s life represents a road toward himself, and attempt at such a road, the intimation of a path. No man has ever been entirely and completely himself.”
  5. #17
    “My story is not a pleasant one; it neither sweet nor harmonious, as invented stories are; it has the taste of nonsense and chaos, of madness and dreams–like the lives of all men who stop deceiving themselves.”
  6. #18
    “Images, pictures, desires arose freely within me, drew me away from the outside world so that I had more substantial and livelier relationship with the world of my own creation, with these images and dreams and shadows, than with the actual world around me.”
  7. #19
    “My goal was not joy but purity, not happiness but beauty, and spirituality.”
  8. #20
    “Yet, what a real living human being is made of seems to be less understood today than at any time before, and men–each one of whom represents a unique and valuable experiment on part of nature–are therefore shot wholesale nowadays.”