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Despair
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Published Monday, April 25, 2016 @ 11:43 AM EDT
Apr 25 2016

Action is the antidote to despair.
-Joan Baez

All my humor is based upon destruction and despair. If the whole world were tranquil, without disease and violence, I'd be standing on the breadline right in back of J. Edgar Hoover.
-Lenny Bruce

And remember: you must never, under any circumstances, despair. To hope and to act, these are our duties in misfortune.
-Boris Pasternak

Anyone who would attempt the task of felling a virgin forest with a penknife would probably feel the same paralysis of despair that the reformer feels when confronted with existing school systems.
-Ellen Key

As long as a man's heart beats, as long as a man's flesh quivers, I do not allow that a being gifted with thought and will can allow himself to despair.
-Jules Verne

At first I was almost about to despair, I thought I never could bear it- but I did I bear it. The question remains: how?
-Heinrich Heine

At its best our age is an age of searchers and discoverers, and at its worst, an age that has domesticated despair and learned to live with it happily.
-Flannery O'Connor

Because I remember, I despair. Because I remember, I have the duty to reject despair.
-Elie Wiesel

Because thou must not dream, thou need not despair.
-Matthew Arnold

Believe flatterers and you're lost; believe your enemies- and you despair.
-Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach

Boast is always a cry of despair, except in the young it is a cry of hope.
-Bernard Berenson

But by far the greatest obstacle to the progress of science and to the undertaking of new tasks and provinces therein is found in this- that men despair and think things impossible.
-Francis Bacon

Courage is as often the outcome of despair as of hope; in the one case we have nothing to lose, in the other everything to gain.
-Diane de Poitiers

Despair is anger with no place to go.
-Mignon McLaughlin

Despair is sometimes the great energizer of the mind, though sometimes its flowering may be sterile.
-Taylor Caldwell

Despair is the conclusion of fools.
-Benjamin Disraeli

Despair is the price one pays for setting oneself an impossible aim.
-Graham Greene

Don't despair, not even over the fact that you don't despair.
-Franz Kafka

Even in our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God.
-Aeschylus

For happiness one needs security, but joy can spring like a flower even from the cliffs of despair.
-Anne Morrow Lindbergh

God does not send us despair in order to kill us, he sends it in order to awaken us to new life.
-Hermann Hesse

I believe that a person should take an affirmative outlook. There are always problems in life, old and new, uncertainties, and unexpected contingencies. The optimal way to deal with this is not to give up in despair, but to move ahead using the best intelligence and resources that we have to overcome adversity.
-Paul Kurtz

I can endure my own Despair But not another's Hope.
-William Walsh

I can't tell if a straw ever saved a drowning man, but I know that a mere glance is enough to make despair pause. For in truth we who are creatures of impulse are not creatures of despair.
-Joseph Conrad

I do not despair for our country. I never do. I believe, as I always have, the essential decency and compassion and common sense of the American people will prevail.
-Jimmy Carter

I must lose myself in action, lest I wither in despair.
-Alfred Lord Tennyson

I think that humor is part of what saves us from despair.
-John Perry Barlow

If I were a father and had a daughter who was seduced, I would not despair over her. But if I had a son who became a journalist and continued to remain one for five years, I would give him up.
-Søren Kierkegaard

If we openly declare what is wrong with us, what is our deepest need, then perhaps the death and despair will by degrees disappear.
-J.B. Priestley

If you look for truth, you may find comfort in the end; if you look for comfort you will not get either comfort or truth only soft soap and wishful thinking to begin, and in the end, despair.
-C.S. Lewis

In a world filled with hate, we must still dare to hope. In a world filled with anger, we must still dare to comfort. In a world filled with despair, we must still dare to dream. And in a world filled with distrust, we must still dare to believe.
-Michael Jackson

In sorrow we must go, but not in despair. Behold! we are not bound for ever to the circles of the world, and beyond them is more than memory.
-J.R.R. Tolkien

It (marriage) happens as with cages: the birds without despair to get in, and those within despair of getting out.
-Michel de Montaigne

It is necessary to work, if not from inclination, at least from despair. As it turns out, work is less boring than amusing oneself.
-Charles Baudelaire

It is often when night looks darkest, it is often before the fever breaks that one senses the gathering momentum for change, when one feels that resurrection of hope in the midst of despair and apathy.
-Hillary Rodham Clinton

Just as despair can come to one only from other human beings, hope, too, can be given to one only by other human beings.
-Elie Wiesel

Life begins on the other side of despair.
-Jean-Paul Sartre

Logic and morality made it impossible to accept an illogical and immoral reality; they engendered a rejection of reality which as a rule led the cultivated man rapidly to despair.
-Primo Levi

My generation, faced as it grew with a choice between religious belief and existential despair, chose marijuana. Now we are in our Cabernet stage.
-Peggy Noonan

Never despair; but if you do, work on in despair.
-Edmund Burke

Only a man who has felt ultimate despair is capable of feeling ultimate bliss.
-Alexandre Dumas

Optimism is an alienated form of faith, pessimism an alienated form of despair.
-Erich Fromm

Optimism is the parent of despair, while pessimism allows the mind to accustom itself to the inevitable disappointments of human existence by degrees, just as some drugs induce a state of tolerance.
-Theodore Dalrymple

Our Western society is showing its technological muscles in ever more threatening ways, but the experience of fear, anxiety and even despair has increased in equal proportion. Indeed, the paradox is that the powerful giants feel as powerless as a new-born babe.
-Henri Nouwen

Patience, n. A minor form of despair, disguised as a virtue.
-Ambrose Bierce

Remember that despair is never the solution. Remember, hatred is never an option. Remember that hope is not a gift given to us, hope is a gift that we give to others.
-Elie Wiesel

She wore far too much rouge last night and not quite enough clothes; that is always a sign of despair in a woman.
-Oscar Wilde

Sins become more subtle as you grow older. You commit sins of despair rather than lust.
-Piers Paul Read

The best bridge between despair and hope is a good night's sleep.
-Harry Ruby

The initial expression of defiance is precisely despair over one's weakness.
-Søren Kierkegaard

The machinery chugs on unabated, belching out its dehumanizing product. It is distressing. But I refuse to despair. I know, one day, the Supreme Court will outlaw the death penalty. Permanently.
-William J. Brennan, Jr.

The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naive and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.
-H.L. Mencken

The way to despair is to refuse to have any kind of experience.
-Flannery O'Connor

The words 'Kiss Kiss Bang Bang,' which I saw on an Italian movie poster, are perhaps the briefest statement imaginable of the basic appeal of movies. This appeal is what attracts us, and ultimately what makes us despair when we begin to understand how seldom movies are more than this.
-Pauline Kael

There is no despair so absolute as that which comes with the first moments of our first great sorrow, when we have not yet known what it is to have suffered and be healed, to have despaired and to have recovered hope.
-George Eliot

Those colorful denizens of male despair, the Bowery bum and the rail-riding hobo, have been replaced by the bag lady and the welfare mother. Women have even taken over Skid Row.
-Florence King

To live is to wrestle with despair, yet never allow despair to have the last word.
-Cornel West

Until everyone is fed, clothed, housed and taught, until human beings have equal leisure to contemplate the overwhelming fact of mortality, we should not... indulge in the luxury of 'privileged despair.'
-Kenneth Tynan

What baffles me is the comfort people find in the idea that somebody dealt this mess. Blind and meaningless chance seems to me so much more congenial- or at least less horrible. Prove to me that there is a God and I will really begin to despair.
-Peter De Vries

When a man is in love very little is enough to throw him into despair and as little to enhance his joy to the utmost.
-Giovanni Casanova

When too many Americans don't vote or participate, some see apathy and despair. I see disappointment and even outrage. And I believe that out of this frustration can come hope and action.
-Paul Wellstone

Women get desperate, but they don't understand despair.
-William Gaddis

Yesterday This Day's Madness did prepare; To-morrow's Silence, Triumph, or Despair: Drink! for you know not whence you came, nor why: Drink! for you know not why you go, nor where.
-Omar Khayyám

You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fear; as young as your hope, as old as your despair.
-Douglas MacArthur

You are never stronger... than when you land on the other side of despair.
-Zadie Smith


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