Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes


"Self-realization is the meaning of life. We are here to realize ourselves in order to become true human beings. But I add from my own experience: My own self-realization must fail if it disregards the self-realization of others. My realization and other’s realizations are meaningful only if they are borne and determined by something that is more than we ourselves: Self-Realization rooted in the reality of God Himself." - Hans Küng

"Life is perpetually creative because it contains in itself that surplus which ever overflows the boundaries of the immediate time and space, restlessly pursuing its adventure of expression in the varied forms of self-realization." -

"We are here because embedded in our human nature is the secret code for heaven’s self-realization. Heaven is certainly omnipresent, may even be omniscient, but is most likely not omnipotent. It needs our active participation to realize its own truth... Since we help heaven to realize itself through our self-discovery, and self-understanding in day-to-day living, the ultimate meaning of life is found in our ordinary, human existence." - Tu Weiming

"Men can starve from a lack of self-realization as much as ... from a lack of bread." -

"In this world within, your world, you are the most important figure. There is a place that no one else can fill There is an influence that no one else can impart. There is a life that no one else can live quite as well as you can live it. What you do with your life within, in terms of self-realization, self-awareness, self-denial and self-expression, is the greatest challenge that can come to you." - Marcus Bach, fully James Marcus Bach

"The joy and meaning of life is enhanced through increased self-realization, through the fulfillment of each being’s potential. Whatever the differences between beings, increased self-realization implies broadening and deepening of the self… Part of the joy stems from the consciousness of our intimate relation to something bigger than our own ego, something which has endured for millions of years and is worth continued life for millions of years." - Arne Dekke Eide Naess

"The way of exoteric religion is to progressively replace egoism by submission to the will of God. Its four cardinal demands are faith, love, humility, and good deeds. In so far as they are complied with, they effectively bring a man towards Self-realization, even though he does not consciously envisage this. True, the Goal is not likely to be attained in this lifetime, but in God’s patience a lifetime is very little. Faith strengthens the intuitional conviction of the reality of God or the Self. Humility, its counterpart, weakens the belief in the ego and lessens the importance attached to it. Love strives to surrender the ego to God and its welfare to others. Good deeds deny egoism in practice and are alike the fruit and proof of love and humility." - Arthur W Osborn

"Self-enquiry leads directly to Self-realization by removing the obstacles which make you think that the Self is not already realized." - Ramana Maharshi, fully Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi

"Modern culture is defined by this extraordinary freedom to ransack the world storehouse and to engorge any and every style it comes upon. Such freedom comes from the fact that the axial principle of modern culture is the expression and remaking of the “self” in order to achieve self-realization and self-fulfillment. And in its search, there is a denial of any limits or boundaries to experience. It is a reaching out for all experience; nothing is forbidden, all is to be explored." - Daniel Bell

"Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot succeed. A sense of inferiority and inadequacy interferes with the attainment of your hopes, but self-confidence leads to self-realization and successful achievement." - Norman Vincent Peale

"The essential proof of Self-realization - of God’s consciousness in you - is to be truly and unconditionally happy." - Paramahansa Yogananda, born Mukunda Lal Ghosh

"Your own self-realization is the greatest gift you can give the world." -

"True knowledge is that knowledge which makes man after self-realization or union with God assert that his real Self is in everything and everybody." - Meher Baba, born Merwan Sheriar Irani

"The ideal of romantic love stands in opposition to much of our history, as we shall see. First of all, it is individualistic. It rejects the view of human beings as interchangeable units, and it attaches the highest importance to individual differences as well as to individual choice. Romantic love is egoistic, in the philosophical, not in the petty, sense. Egoism as a philosophical doctrine holds that self-realization and personal happiness are the moral goals of life, and romantic love is motivated by the desire for personal happiness. Romantic love is secular. In its union of physical with spiritual pleasure in sex and love, as well as in its union of romance and daily life, romantic love is a passionate commitment to this earth and to the exalted happiness that life on earth can offer." - Nathaniel Branden

"Fearlessness means faith in God: faith in his protection, His justice, His wisdom, His mercy, His love, and His Omnipresence... To be fit for Self-realization man must be fearless." - Paramahansa Yogananda, born Mukunda Lal Ghosh

"Men can starve from a lack of self-realization as much as they can from a lack of bread." - Richard Wright, fully Richard Nathaniel Wright

"No policy is sustainable without a public that broadly understands why it's necessary and sees the world the way you do..." - Thomas L. Friedman, fully Thomas Lauren Friedman