Thomas Mann (Writer)

#47099 Thomas Mann

We are most likely to get angry and excited in our opposition to some idea when we ourselves are not quite certain of our own position, and are inwardly tempted to take the other side. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about war
#47100 Thomas Mann

Life is not the means for the achievement of an esthetic ideal of perfection; on the contrary, the work is an ethical symbol of life. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47101 Thomas Mann

I have an epic, not a dramatic nature. My disposition and my desires call for peace to spin my thread, for a steady rhythm in life and art. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47102 Thomas Mann

Fanaticism turns into a means of salvation, enthusiasm into epileptic ecstasy, politics becomes an opiate for the masses, a proletarian eschatology; and reason veils her face. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about politics
#47103 Thomas Mann

Unhappy German nation, how do you like the Messianic role allotted to you, not by God, nor by destiny, but by a handful of perverted and bloody-minded men? .

Thomas Mann Quotes about mind
#47104 Thomas Mann

A writer is somebody for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about writing
#47105 Thomas Mann

It is not good when people no longer believe in war. Pretty soon they no longer believe in many other things which they absolutely must believe in if they are to be decent men. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about war
#47106 Thomas Mann

Only indifference is free. What is distinctive is never free, it is stamped with its own seal, conditioned and chained. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about free
#47107 Thomas Mann

I think of my suffering, of the problem of my suffering. What am I suffering from? From knowledge — is it going to destroy me? What am I suffering from? From sexuality — is it going to destroy me? How I hate it, this knowledge which forces even art to join it! How I hate it, this sensuality, which claims everything fine and good is its consequence and effect. Alas, it is the poison that lurks in everything fine and good! — How am I to free myself of knowledge? By religion? How am I to free myself of sexuality? By eating rice? .

Thomas Mann Quotes about religion
#47108 Thomas Mann

Here and there, among a thousand other peddlers, are slyly hissing dealers who urge you to come along with them to allegedly "very beautiful" girls, and not only to girls. They keep at it, walk alongside, praising their wares until you answer roughly. They don't know that you have resolved to eat nothing but rice just to escape from sexuality! .

Thomas Mann Quotes about war
#47110 Thomas Mann

It is as though something had begun to slip – as though I haven’t the firm grip I had on events. – What is success? It is an inner, an indescribable force, resourcefulness, power of vision; a consciousness that I am, by my mere existence, exerting pressure on the movement of life about me. It is my belief in the adaptability of life to my own ends. Fortune and success lie within ourselves. We must hold them firmly – deep within us. For as soon as something begins to slip, to relax, to get tired, within us, then everything without us will rebel and struggle to withdraw from our influence. One thing follows another, blow after blow – and the man is finished. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47111 Thomas Mann

Beauty can pierce one like pain. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about pain
#47112 Thomas Mann

That daily the night falls; that over stresses and torments, cares and sorrows the blessing of sleep unfolds, stilling and quenching them; that every anew this draught of refreshment and lethe is offered to our parching lips, ever after the battle this mildness laves our shaking limbs, that from it, purified from sweat and dust and blood, strengthened, renewed, rejuvenated, almost innocent once more, almost with pristine courage and zeal we may go forth again — these I hold to be the benignest, the most moving of all the great facts of life. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47113 Thomas Mann

I met the New Passion, then, as democracy, as political enlightenment and the humanitarianism of happiness. I understood its efforts to be toward the politicization of everything ethos; its aggressiveness and doctrinary intolerance consisted – I experienced them personally – in its denial and slander of every nonpolitical ethos. “Mankind” as humanitarian internationalism; “reason” and “virtue” as the radical republic; intellect as a thing between a Jacobin club and Freemasonry; art as social literature and maliciously seductive rhetoric in the service of social “desirability”; here we have the New Passion in its purest political form as I saw it close up. I admit that this is a special, extremely romanticized form of it. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about happiness
#47114 Thomas Mann

The important thing for me, then, is not the "work," but my life. Life is not the means for the achievement of an esthetic ideal of perfection; on the contrary, the work is an ethical symbol of life. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47115 Thomas Mann

He is no longer with me—by my orders—but then that is merel the carrying-out of an order, after all a kind of negative being-with-me, as he would say. As for anywhich Bashan might lead without me during these hours—that is not to be thought of. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about thought
#47116 Thomas Mann

Extraordinary creature! So close a friend, and yet so remote. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about friend
#47117 Thomas Mann

The meeting in the open of two dogs, strangers to each other, is one of the most painful, thrilling, and pregnant of all conceivable encounters; it is surrounded by an atmosphere of the last canniness, presided over by a constraint for which I have no preciser name; they simply cannot pass each other, their mutual embarrassment is frightful to behold. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about pain
#47118 Thomas Mann

A great truth is a truth whose opposite is also a truth. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about truth
#47120 Thomas Mann

This fantastic state of mind, of a humanity that has outrun its ideas, is matched by a political scene in the grotesque style, with Salvation Army methods, hallelujahs and bell-ringing and dervishlike repetition of monotonous catchwords, until everybody foams at the mouth. Fanaticism turns into a means of salvation, enthusiasm into epileptic ecstasy, politics becomes an opiate for the masses, a proletarian eschatology; and reason veils her face. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about politics
#47121 Thomas Mann

The deep conviction . . . that nothing good for Germany or the world can come out of the present German regime, has made me avoid the country in whose spiritual tradition I am more deeply rooted than are those who for three years have been trying to find courage enough to declare before the world that I am not a German. And I feel to the bottom of my heart that I have done right in the eyes of my contemporaries and of posterity. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about art
#47122 Thomas Mann

In the Word is involved the unity of humanity, the wholeness of the human problem, which permits nobody to separate the intellectual and artistic from the political and social, and to isolate himself within the ivory tower of the "cultural" proper. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about art
#47123 Thomas Mann

Democracy is timelessly human, and timelessness always implies a certain amount of potential youthfulness. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about time
#47124 Thomas Mann

In certain respects, particularly economically, National-Socialism is nothing but bolshevism. These two are hostile brothers of whom the younger has learned everything from the older, the Russian excepting only morality. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about art
#47125 Thomas Mann

This was love at first sight, love everlasting: a feeling unknown, unhoped for, unexpected — in so far as it could be a matter of conscious awareness; it took entire possession of him, and he understood, with joyous amazement, that this was for life. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about love
#47126 Thomas Mann

The Freudian theory is one of the most important foundation stones for an edifice to be built by future generations, the dwelling of a freer and wiser humanity. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about humanity
#47128 Thomas Mann

It is a strange fact that freedom and equality, the two basic ideas of democracy, are to some extent contradictory. Logically considered, freedom and equality are mutually exclusive, just as society and the individual are mutually exclusive. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about freedom
#47129 Thomas Mann

What we call National-Socialism is the poisonous perversion of ideas which have a long history in German intellectual life. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47130 Thomas Mann

An art whose medium is language will always show a high degree of critical creativeness, for speech is itself a critique of life: it names, it characterizes, it passes judgment, in that it creates. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47132 Thomas Mann

Politics has been called the “art of the possible,” and it actually is a realm akin to art insofar as, like art, it occupies a creatively mediating position between spirit and life, the idea and reality. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47133 Thomas Mann

Reduced to a miserable mass level, the level of a , German Romanticism broke out into hysterical barbarism. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about man
#47134 Thomas Mann

Every reasonable human being should be a moderate Socialist. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about man
#47135 Thomas Mann

I have always been an admirer. I regard the gift of admiration as indispensable if one is to amount to something; I don’t know where I would be without it. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about wit
#47136 Thomas Mann

War is only a cowardly escape from the problems of peace. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about war
#47137 Thomas Mann

The positive thing about the sceptic is that he considers everything possible! .

Thomas Mann Quotes about positive
#47140 Thomas Mann

It often happens that an old family, with traditions that are entirely practical, sober and bourgeois, undergoes in its declining days a kind of artistic transfiguration. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about art
#47142 Thomas Mann

They sang their mysterious duo, sang of their nameless hope, their death-in-love, their union unending, lost forever in the embrace of night’s magic kingdom. O sweet night, everlasting night of love! Land of blessedness whose frontiers are infinite! .

Thomas Mann Quotes about love
#47143 Thomas Mann

It had been a moving, tranquil apotheosis, immersed in the transfiguring sunset glow of decline and decay and extinction. An old family, already grown too weary and too noble for life and action, had reached the end of its history, and its last utterances were sounds of music: a few violin notes, full of the sad insight which is ripeness for death. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47144 Thomas Mann

If you are possessed by an idea, you find it expressed everywhere, you even smell it. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about you
#47145 Thomas Mann

I stand between two worlds, am at home in neither, and in consequence have rather a hard time of it. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about time
#47146 Thomas Mann

There is an artistry so deep, so primordial and elemental, that no yearning seems to it sweeter and more worthy of tasting than that for the raptures of common-placeness. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about art
#47147 Thomas Mann

I am looking into an unborn and shapeless world that longs to be called to life and order… .

Thomas Mann Quotes about life
#47149 Thomas Mann

What they, in their innocence, cannot comprehend is that a properly constituted, healthy, decent man never writes, acts, or composes. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about man
#47150 Thomas Mann

This longing for the bliss of the commonplace. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about longing
#47151 Thomas Mann

He remembered the dissolute adventures in which his senses, his nervous system and his mind had indulged; he saw himself corroded by irony and intellect, laid waste and paralyzed by insight, almost exhausted by the fevers and chills of creation, helplessly and contritely tossed to and fro between gross extremes, between saintly austerity and lust — oversophisticated and impoverished, worn out by cold, rare artificial ecstasies, lost, ravaged, racked and sick — and he sobbed with remorse and nostalgia. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about art
#47152 Thomas Mann

I stand between two worlds, am at home in neither, and in consequence have rather a hard time of it. You artists call me a commoner, and commoners feel tempted to arrest me ... I do not know which wounds me more bitterly. Commoners are stupid; but you worshippers of beauty who call me phlegmatic and without yearning, ought to reflect that there is an artistry so deep, so primordial and elemental, that no yearning seems to it sweeter and more worthy of tasting than that for the raptures of common-placeness. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about time
#47153 Thomas Mann

I admire the proud and cold who go adventuring on the paths of great and demoniac beauty, and scorn "man" — but I do not envy them. For if anything is capable of making a poet out of a man of letters, it is this plebeian love of mine for the human, living, and commonplace. All warmth, all goodness, all humor is born of it, and it almost seems to me as if it were that love itself, of which it is written that a man might speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and yet without it be no more than sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about love
#47154 Thomas Mann

What I have done is nothing, not much — as good as nothing. I shall do better things, Lisaveta — this is a promise. While I am writing, the sea's roar is coming up to me, and I close my eyes. I am looking into an unborn and shapeless world that longs to be called to life and order, I am looking into a throng of phantoms of human forms which beckon me to conjure them and set them free: some of them tragic, some of them ridiculous, and some that are both at once — and to these I am very devoted. But my deepest and most secret love belongs to the blond and blue-eyed, the bright-spirited living ones, the happy, amiable, and commonplace. Do not speak lightly of this love, Lisaveta; it is good and fruitful. There is longing in it and melancholy envy, and a tiny bit of contempt, and an unalloyed chaste blissfulness. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about love
#47155 Thomas Mann

Der Tod in Venedig, originally published in Die Neue Rundschau 23 (Oct-Nov 1912) .

Thomas Mann Quotes about die
#47156 Thomas Mann

The figure ofis the most perfect symbol if not of art in general, then certainly of the kind of art in question. .

Thomas Mann Quotes about art

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