Man, your head is haunted; you have wheels in your head! You imagine great things, and depict to yourself a whole world of gods that has an existence for you, a spirit-realm to which you suppose yourself to be called, an ideal that beckons to you. You have a fixed idea!
Protestantism has actually put a man in the position of a country governed by secret police. The spy and eavesdropper, ‘conscience,’ watches over every motion of the mind, and all thought and action is for it a ‘matter of conscience,’ i.e. police business.
What distinguishes the majority of men from the few is their inability to act according to their beliefs.
The liberty of the individual must be thus far limited; he must not make himself a nuisance to other people.
From the moment when he catches sight of the light of the world, a man seeks to find out himself and get hold of himself out of its confusion, in which he, with everything else, is tossed about in motley mixture.
The general tendency of things throughout the world is to render mediocrity the ascendant power among mankind.
You were made perfectly to be loved – and surely I have loved you, in the idea of you, my whole life long.
Crimes spring from fixed ideas.
It is questionable if all the mechanical inventions yet made have lightened the day’s toil of any human being.
Unquestionably, it is possible to do without happiness; it is done involuntarily by nineteen-twentieths of mankind.