115 Philosophy Quotes

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By Maxime Lagacé maxime lagace small

Here are 115 of the best philosophy quotes I could find. What’s the goal? To inspire you to think deeply and perhaps find a new philosophy of life from these great philosophers. Enjoy!
philosophy quotes science truth artistotle wisdom

Philosophy is the science of truth. Aristotle Click to tweet

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Science is what you know. Philosophy is what you don’t know. Bertrand Russell Click to tweet

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Don’t explain your philosophy. Embody it. Epictetus Click to tweet

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The philosopher’s product is his life. Friedrich Nietzsche Click to tweet

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My advice to you is not to inquire why or whither, but just enjoy your ice cream while it’s on your plate – that’s my philosophy. Thornton Wilder Click to tweet

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Philosophy teaches us to act, not to speak. Seneca Click to tweet

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We have philosophy professors, but no philosophers. Henry David Thoreau Click to tweet

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Learn to ask of all actions, “Why are they doing that?”, starting with your own. Marcus Aurelius Click to tweet

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To live without philosophizing is in truth the same as keeping the eyes closed without attempting to open them. René Descartes Click to tweet

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Philosophy, n. A route of many roads leading from nowhere to nothing. Ambrose Bierce Click to tweet

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History is philosophy teaching by examples. Thucydides Click to tweet

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Philosophy is at once the most sublime and the most trivial of human pursuits. William James Click to tweet

philosophy quotes trying make sense what doesnt maxime lagace wisdom

Philosophy is trying to make sense of what doesn’t. Maxime Lagacé

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Astonishment is the root of philosophy. Paul Tillich Click to tweet

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The three great things of life are: good health; work; and a philosophy of life. Jack London Click to tweet

Related quotes and topics: responsibility, knowledge, spiritual

Enjoying the quotes so far?

Keep reading if you want to discover what Bruce Lee, Montaigne and Epictetus had to say about philosophy.

As a lover of quotes, psychology and philosophy myself, I’ve always been fascinated by how the old philosophers viewed life and how they dealt with it.

It seems a lost art nowadays to ponder deep philosophical and existential questions. Happily, we still have access to those beautiful words.

In a sense, it’s reassuring and guiding to know how people like Nietzsche or Einstein approached their lives and struggles.

Like Buddha said, life is suffering and without a way of life and a philosophy of life, it can be hard to navigate it. Isn’t it?

The Best Philosophy Quotes

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Be a philosopher but, amid all your philosophy be still a man. David Hume

philosophy quotes every man bears whole stamp human condition michel montaigne wisdom nature

Every man bears the whole stamp of the human condition. Michel de Montaigne Click to tweet

I study myself more than any other subject. That is my metaphysics, that is my physics. Michel de Montaigne

Philosophy is man’s expression of curiosity about everything and his attempt to make sense of the world primarily through his intellect. Alan Watts

There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers. William James

We are too weak to discover the truth by reason alone. Augustine of Hippo

Philosophy is a battle against the bewitchment of our intelligence by means of language. Ludwig Wittgenstein

A little philosophy inclineth man’s mind to atheism; but depth in philosophy bringeth men’s minds about to religion. Francis Bacon

For me, I am driven by two main philosophies: know more today about the world than I knew yesterday and lessen the suffering of others. You’d be surprised how far that gets you. Neil deGrasse Tyson

philosophy quotes study science learn what want first place naval ravikant wisdom

We study science to learn how to get what we want. We study philosophy to know what to want in the first place. Naval Ravikant Click to tweet

My philosophy is: It’s none of my business what people say of me and think of me. I am what I am and I do what I do. I expect nothing and accept everything. And it makes life so much easier. Anthony Hopkins (Related topic: self-respect)

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Philosophy consists very largely of one philosopher arguing that all others are jackasses. He usually proves it, and I should add that he also usually proves that he is one himself. H. L. Mencken

There is no good or bad without us, there is only perception. There is the event itself and the story we tell ourselves about what it means. Ryan Holiday

Philosophy is itself the disease for which it pretends to be the cure: the wise man does not pursue wisdom but lives his life, and therein precisely does his wisdom lie. Bruce Lee

Just as eating cow meat doesn’t turn you into a cow, studying philosophy doesn’t make you wiser. Nassim Nicholas Taleb (The Bed of Procrustes, Amazon book)

My philosophy, in essence, is the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute. Ayn Rand

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The best philosophy of life I’ve found is this: just keep going. Maxime Lagacé Click to tweet

The point of philosophy is to start with something so simple as not to seem worth stating, and to end with something so paradoxical that no one will believe it. Bertrand Russell (The Philosophy of Logical Atomism, Amazon book)

What is the first business of one who practices philosophy? To get rid of self-conceit. For it is impossible for anyone to begin to learn that which he thinks he already knows. Epictetus

A philosopher who is not taking part in discussions is like a boxer who never goes into the ring. Ludwig Wittgenstein

A wise man does not converse for the sake of displaying his own intelligence. James Pierce

To philosophize is to learn how to die or to rise to divinity. Karl Jaspers

Real philosophy is to learn to see the world again. Maurice Merleau-Ponty

Related articles: Top Stoic Quotes That Will Give You Perspective, Thinking Quotes That Will Make You More Clever

Part 2. Philosophy Quotes That Are…

The Most Famous Philosophy Quotes

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Searching for a famous philosophy quote? Check out those by Einstein, Plato, Aristotle, Beethoven, Montaigne, etc.
philosophy quotes carpe diem herself laissez faire others scott fitzgerald wisdom

Her philosophy is carpe diem for herself and laissez faire for others. F. Scott Fitzgerald Click to tweet

I do not at all believe in human freedom in the philosophical sense. Everybody acts not only under external compulsion but also in accordance with inner necessity. Albert Einstein

I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. John Adams

People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. Theodore Roosevelt

My condition is not unhappiness, but it is also not happiness, not indifference, not weakness, not fatigue, not another interest – so what is it then? Franz Kafka

This is patently absurd; but whoever wishes to become a philosopher must learn not to be frightened by absurdities. Bertrand Russell

In the eyes of dialectical philosophy, nothing is established for all times, nothing is absolute or sacred. Karl Marx

Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy. Music is the electrical soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents. Ludwig van Beethoven

To have no time for philosophy is to be a true philosopher. Blaise Pascal

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My philosophy is that not only are you responsible for your life, but doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment. Oprah Winfrey Click to tweet

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How slow men are in matters when they believe they have time and how swift they are when necessity drives them to it. Niccolò Machiavelli

Anyone who studies present and ancient affairs will easily see how in all cities and all peoples there still exist, and have always existed, the same desires and passions. Niccolò Machiavelli

There will be no end to the troubles of states, or of humanity itself, till philosophers become kings in this world, or till those we now call kings and rulers really and truly become philosophers, and political power and philosophy thus come into the same hands. Plato

There is something of a civil war going on within all of our lives. There is a recalcitrant South of our soul revolting against the North of our soul. And there is this continual struggle within the very structure of every individual life. Martin Luther King Jr

Philosophy triumphs easily over past evils and future evils; but present evils triumph over it. François de la Rochefoucauld

Broadly speaking, human beings may be divided into three classes: those who are toiled to death, those who are worried to death, and those are bored to death. Winston Churchill

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As I grow older, I pay less attention to what people say. I just watch what they do. Andrew Carnegie Click to tweet

By all means marry; if you get a good wife, you’ll become happy; if you get a bad one, you’ll become a philosopher. Socrates

Poetry is something more philosophic and serious than history; for poetry speaks of what is universal, history of what is particular. Aristotle

To live alone one must be an animal or a God – says Aristotle. There is yet a third case: one must be both – a philosopher. Friedrich Nietzsche

Truly man is a marvellously vain, diverse, and undulating object. It is hard to found any constant and uniform judgement on him. Michel de Montaigne

If a man’s good for nothing else, he can at least teach philosophy. William James

But people themselves alter so much, that there is something new to be observed in them for ever. Jane Austen

A good philosopher makes a bad citizen. Napoleon Bonaparte

See also: What is Philosophy for? (5-minute YouTube video)

Inspirational Philosophy Quotes

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philosophy quotes philosophers have hitherto interpreted world various ways change karl marx wisdom new york city

Philosophers have hitherto only interpreted the world in various ways; the point, however, is to change it. Karl Marx Click to tweet

Practice the philosophy of continuous improvement. Get a little bit better every single day. Brian Tracy

I think everybody should study ants. They have an amazing four-part philosophy. Never give up, look ahead, stay positive and do all you can. Jim Rohn

Behavior is a mirror in which everyone shows his image. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

It surprises me how disinterested we are today about things like physics, space, the universe and philosophy of our existence, our purpose, our final destination. It’s a crazy world out there. Be curious. Stephen Hawking

To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts, nor even to found a school…it is to solve some of the problems of life, not only theoretically, but practically. Henry David Thoreau

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To teach how to live without certainty, and yet without being paralysed by hesitation, is perhaps the chief thing that philosophy, in our age, can still do for those who study it. Bertrand Russell Click to tweet

The perfection of wisdom, and the end of true philosophy is to proportion our wants to our possessions, our ambitions to our capacities, we will then be a happy and a virtuous people. Mark Twain

Jokes of the proper kind, properly told, can do more to enlighten questions of politics, philosophy, and literature than any number of dull arguments. Isaac Asimov

This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness. 14th Dalai Lama

No one should postpone the study of philosophy when he is young, nor should he wear of it when he becomes mature, for the search for mental health is never untimely or out of season. Epicurus

To say that the time to study philosophy has not yet arrived or that it is past is like saying that the time for happiness is not yet at hand, or is no longer present. Epicurus

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The ones who let go are the ones who stay sane. Maxime Lagacé Click to tweet

Whatever has value in our world now does not have value in itself, according to its nature – nature is always value-less, but has been given value at some time, as a present – and it was we who gave and bestowed it. Friedrich Nietzsche (The Gay Science)

Intuition does not in itself amount to knowledge, yet cannot be disregarded by philosophers and psychologists. Corliss Lamont

There are three classes of men; the retrograde, the stationary and the progressive. Johann Kaspar Lavater

Always look at what people do, not who they are. Gloria Steinem (My Life on the Road, Amazon book)

Want more inspiring quotes? Please check out Positive Quotes That Will Make Your Day Wonderful, Attitude Quotes That Will Help You Be More Positive

Deep Philosophy Quotes

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philosophy quotes biological machines programmed survive replicate happy anti evolution naval ravikant wisdom

We are biological machines programmed to survive and replicate. Happy is anti-evolution. Naval Ravikant Click to tweet

To be human is above all to be sensitive. Alan Watts

It’s ok to not have a strong opinion on everything. Zuby

Of all people only those are at leisure who make time for philosophy, only they truly live. Not satisfied to merely keep good watch over their own days, they annex every age to their own. Seneca

A serious and good philosophical work could be written consisting entirely of jokes. Ludwig Wittgenstein

There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide. Albert Camus

It is contagion that determines the fate of a theory in social science, not its validity. Nassim Nicholas Taleb

A fool’s brain digests philosophy into folly, science into superstition, and art into pedantry. Hence University education. George Bernard Shaw

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The things which philosophy attempts to teach by reasoning, poverty forces us to practice. Diogenes Click to tweet

Desire, fundamentally, is a response to a feeling of incompleteness. James Pierce

Unexamined desires run rampant throughout the life of the average person. With these desires comes pain. James Pierce (See also: The Intricacies of Desire, Twitter thread)

A human being wants something that will fill the holes he feels within himself. James Pierce

Rarely do we sit and discuss serious matters for a whole hour. You may go to the office for a whole day, but it has far greater meaning to spend sixty minutes in order to investigate, to seriously examine our human problems hesitantly, tentatively and with great affection. Jiddu Krishnamurti

We like explanations, we like theories, we indulge in speculative philosophy and we are carried away by all that. Jiddu Krishnamurti

Experience has shown, and a true philosophy will always show, that a vast, perhaps the larger portion of the truth arises from the seemingly irrelevant. Edgar Allan Poe

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The right philosophy is the one that will make you move forward. Maxime Lagacé Click to tweet

Are you actually living or is it the past living in the present? Jiddu Krishnamurti

It’s touching that almost everyone you meet, however outwardly accomplished, craves reassurance you like them and think they’re doing OK. Alain de Botton

There is no statement so absurd that no philosopher will make it. Cicero

Every ideology is contrary to human psychology. Albert Camus (The Rebel)

There are no uninteresting things, only uninterested people. G.K. Chesterton

See also: Six Ideas From Eastern Philosophy (8-minute YouTube video by The School of Life)

Wise Philosophy Quotes

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philosophy quotes read old young learn how live thibaut wisdom

Read philosophy. It is not for the old, but for the young to learn how to live. Thibaut Click to tweet

Inner peace is the final stage of philosophy. Maxime Lagacé

To become a philosopher, start by walking very slowly. Nassim Nicholas Taleb

You know you have influence when people start noticing your absence more than the presence of others. Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Loyalty to a petrified opinion never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul. Mark Twain

Absurdity is one of the most human things about us: a manifestation of our most advanced and interesting characteristics. Thomas Nagel (Mortal Questions, Amazon book)

Behavior is what someone is doing, intention is why they’re doing it. You judge yourself based on your intention, and everyone else based on their behavior. Sahil Lavingia

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The strongest intellectual foundation is built upon science, math, and philosophy, as they are the search for universal truths. Naval Ravikant Click to tweet

Philosophy is the blind man’s effort. It is said: Philosophy is a blind man in a dark room on a dark night, searching for a black cat which is not there. Osho

The only people we can think of as normal are those we don’t yet know very well. Alain de Botton

There may be significant things to learn about people by looking at what annoys them most. Alain de Botton

The desire to belong often overpowers the desire to improve. James Clear

Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous. David Hume

The hunger for facile wisdom is the root of all false philosophy. George Santanaya

More words of wisdom

See also: EASTERN PHILOSOPHY – The Buddha (6-minute YouTube video by The School of Life)

Part 3. Conclusion

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philosophy quotes century common sense next henry ward beecher wisdom

The philosophy of one century is the common sense of the next. Henry Ward Beecher Click to tweet

If you live long enough, you become a philosopher because you start trying to solve the big problems in your life. The big problems are the old ones — the ones we’ve been trying to solve since the beginning: How do I stay happy? How do I become healthy? How do I become wealthy? How do I raise the family I want? Naval Ravikant

Call to action: Read 205 Philosophical Questions – A huge list of thought provoking questions (conversationstartersworld.com) or watch Marcus Aurelius — How to Live A Good Life (6-minute YouTube video)

Hope you enjoyed these beautiful philosophy quotes. If you did, please share them with a friend today!

Author Bio

maxime lagace

Maxime Lagacé started collecting quotes in 2004 after he lost his girlfriend in a car accident.

In search of meaning, he dived in the self-improvement world, psychology and trail running. His goal was to understand his pain, his depression, his fears, his lack of motivation and inspiration.

Books, blogs, quotes and nature became his guide.

He finished his software engineering degree in 2007 at the École de Technologie Supérieure de Montréal. He also studied at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. A few years later, he started his first website to share his passion for quotes.

Maxime is a father of two, INFJ and also loves running. His best 5k is 17 minutes 41 seconds and his best marathon (42k) is in 3 hours 33 minutes 11 seconds (with 1800 meters of elevation gain).

Other notable interests of Maxime are health (mental and physical), meditation, nutrition, bananas, SEO, human potential, education, learning, productivity and minimalism.

Finally, he is (very) far from being perfect.

You can find him on Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Quora, Strava, Sportstats, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube.

Creation Date

March 18, 2021

Last Update

July 15, 2021

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