Aldous Leonard Huxley

Aldous Leonard
Huxley
1894
1963

English Novelist, Short-Stories, Playwright and Editor including Brave New World and Oxford Poetry

Author Quotes

The aging man of the middle twentieth century lives, not in the public world of atomic physics and conflicting ideologies, of welfare states and supersonic speed, but in his strictly private universe of physical weakness and mental decay.

The law of diminishing returns holds good in almost every part of our human universe.

The most shocking fact about war is that its victims and its instruments are individual human beings, and that these individual beings are condemned by the monstrous convention of politics to murder or be murdered in quarrels not their own.

The natural rhythm of human life is routine punctuated by orgies.

The Perennial Philosophy... the metaphysic that recognizes a divine reality substantial to the world of things and lives and minds; the psychology that finds in the soul something similar to, or even identical with divine Reality; the ethic that places man's final end in the knowledge of immanent and transcendent Ground of being.

The propagandist's purpose is to make one set of people forget that certain other sets of people are human.

The proper study of mankind is books.

We find that the religions, whose theology has been least preoccupied with events in time and most concerned with eternity, have been consistently the least violent and most humane in political practice.

Every man's memory is his private literature.

We possess a hidden higher self, the spark of divinity within the soul, which reflects this transcendental reality in our lives. By fulfilling certain necessary conditions, such as making ourselves more loving and compassionate, we can clear away the mental and emotional static that separates us from this inner reality, enabling the higher self to assume a central, guiding role in our lives. This awakening - called enlightenment, deliverance, or salvation in the various traditions - is the goal or purpose of human life. When we achieve this complete transformation of consciousness, we awaken from our limited, often painful condition and reconnect with our true nature.

After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.

An unexciting truth may be eclipsed by a thrilling lie.

Armaments, universal debt and planned obsolescence - those are the three pillars of Western prosperity.

At any given moment, life is completely senseless. But viewed over a period, it seems to reveal itself as an organism existing in time, having a purpose, tending in a certain direction.

Divisive forces are more powerful than those which make for union. Vested interests in language, philosophies of life, table manners, sexual habits, political, ecclesiastical and economic organizations are sufficiently powerful to block all attempts, by rational methods, to unite mankind for its own good. And there is nationalism. With the 57 varieties of tribal gods, nationalism is the religion of the 20th century. We may be Christians, Jews, Moslems, Hindus, Buddhists, Confucians or Atheists; but the fact remains that there is only one faith for which large masses of us are prepared to die and kill, and that faith is nationalism.

Every gain made by individuals or societies is almost instantly taken for granted. The luminous ceiling toward which we raise our longing eyes becomes, when we have climbed to the next floor, a stretch of disregarded linoleum beneath our feet.

There's only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that's your own self.

Too much consistency is as bad for the mind as it is for the body. Consistency is contrary to nature, contrary to life. The only completely consistent people are the dead.

Unrestrained and indiscriminate talk is morally evil and spiritually dangerous.

We can only love what we know and we can never know completely what we do not love.

We can only love what we know, and we can never know completely what we do not love. Love is a mode of knowledge, and when the love is sufficiently disinterested and sufficiently intense, the knowledge becomes unitive knowledge and so takes on the quality of infallibility.

What we do depends in large measure upon what we think, and if what we do it evil, there is good empirical reason for supposing that our thought patterns are inadequate to material, mental or spiritual reality.

When, for whatever reason, men and women fail to transcend themselves by means of worship, good works and spiritual exercises, they are apt to resort to religion’s chemical surrogates.

Whenever, for any reason, we wish to think of the world, not as it appears to common sense, but as a continuum, we find that our traditional syntax and vocabulary are quite inadequate. Mathematicians have therefore been compelled to invent radically new symbol-systems for this express purpose. But the divine Ground of all existence is not merely a continuum, it is also out of time, and different, not merely in degree, but in kind from the worlds to which traditional language and the languages of mathematics are adequate.

Without self-knowledge there can be no true humility.

Author Picture
First Name
Aldous Leonard
Last Name
Huxley
Birth Date
1894
Death Date
1963
Bio

English Novelist, Short-Stories, Playwright and Editor including Brave New World and Oxford Poetry