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The Great Divorce Quotes

20 of the best book quotes from The Great Divorce
  1. #1
    “There is but one good; that is God. Everything else is good when it looks to Him and bad when it turns from Him.”
  2. #2
    “There are only two kinds of people: those who say to God, ‘Thy will be done,’ and those to whom God says, ‘All right, then, have it your way.‘”
  3. #3
    “That’s one of the disappointments. I thought you’d meet interesting historical characters. But you don’t: they’re too far away. ”
  4. #4
    ″... But if there’s a real war why don’t they do anything? ... If they wanted to rescue us they could do it.”
  5. #5
    “That is why, at the end of all things, when the sun rises here and the twilight turns to blackness down there, the Blessed will say, “we have never lived anywhere except in heaven,’ and the Lost, “We were always in Hell.” And both will speak truly.”
  6. #6
    “There’s something in natural affection which will lead it on to eternal love more easily than natural appetite could be led on. But there’s also something in it which makes it easier to stop at the natural level and mistake it for the heavenly. Brass is mistaken for gold more easily than clay is. And if it finally refuses conversion its corruption will be worse than the corruption of what ye call the lower passions. It is a stronger angel, and therefore, when it falls, a fiercer devil.”
  1. #7
    “Those that hate goodness are sometimes nearer than those that know nothing at all about it and think they have it already.”
  2. #8
    “I gasped when I saw them. Now that they were in the light, they were transparent–fully transparent … They were in fact ghosts: man-shaped stains on the brightness of that air.”
  3. #9
    “Without that self-choice there could be no Hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. To those who knock it is opened.”
  4. #10
    “The whole difficulty of understanding Hell is that the thing to be understood is so nearly nothing.”
  5. #11
    “The demand of the loveless and the self-imprisoned that they should be allowed to blackmail the universe: that till they consent to be happy (on their own terms) no one else shall taste joy: that theirs should be the final power; that Hell should be able to veto Heaven.”
  6. #12
    “No natural feelings are high or low, holy or unholy, in themselves. They are all holy when God’s hand is on the rein. They all go bad when they set up on their own and make themselves into false gods.”
  1. #13
    “Ye cannot fully understand the relations of choice and Time till you are beyond both.”
  2. #14
    You weren’t a decent man and you didn’t do your best.
  3. #15
    ″... If they leave that grey town behind it will not have been Hell. To any that leaves it, it is Purgatory. ”
  4. #16
    “They say of some temporary suffering, ‘No future bliss can make up for it,’ not knowing that Heaven, once attained, will work backwards and turn even that agony into a glory.”
  5. #17
    “What we called love down there was mostly the craving to be loved. In the main I loved you for my own sake: because I needed you…We shall have no need for one another now: we can begin to love truly.”
  6. #18
    “I seemed to be standing in a busy queue by the side of a long, mean street. ”
  7. #19
    “All Hell is smaller than one pebble of your earthly world; but it is smaller than one atom of this world, the Real World.”
  8. #20
    “You cannot love a fellow-creature fully till you love God.”