Fragments of Wisdom: A Collection of Thought-Provoking Quotes


Explore a curated collection of insights, proverbs, memes, and jokes from diverse cultures and time periods. From philosophy and literature to everyday wisdom, discover timeless thoughts that inspire and provoke contemplation. Dive into the fragments of wisdom that shape our understanding of the world. My aim is to keep it short and easy, making philosophy accessible and engaging for all.  

"This has caused me the greatest trouble and still does always cause me the greatest trouble: to realize that what things are called is unspeakably more important than what they are.  ~ Nietzsche

“History is Philosophy teaching by examples”  -Thucydides

“Morality is not the doctrine of how we may make ourselves happy, but of how we may make ourselves worthy of happiness” – Immanuel Kant

Is the man who deals with the absolute not necessarily claiming to be the thinking organ with the capacity to do so, and thus the absolute himself? ~ Theodor Adorno

“In whatever manner God created the world, it would always have been regular and in a certain general order. God, however, has chosen the most perfect, that is to say, the one which is at the same time the simplest in hypothesis and the richest in phenomena.” Leibniz

“To be is to be the value of a bound variable.” (Quine 1948)

When leaves stop falling, fall starts leaving. ~ Japanese Proverb

In biology, cells multiply by dividing. ~ Anonymous

Nursery teacher : `When ice melts, what do you get ?'  One boy answered : `Spring.'

“Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent” – Ludwig Wittgenstein

Mysticism is the metaphysics for idiots.  ~ Adorno

Our image of happiness is indissolubly bound up with the image of redemption. ~ Walter Benjamin

“There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide” – Albert Camus

“The unexamined life is not worth living” – Socrates

“There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance” – Socrates

In the same river, we both step and do not step, we are and we are not. Heraclitus (Fragment 49a)

The word "big" is not bigger than "little." - Anonymous

“What is time? If you don’t ask me, I know. If you ask me, I don’t know.”  - Saint Augustine

What we saw and grasped, that we leave behind; but what we did not see and did not grasp, that we bring. Heraclitus (Fragment 56)

“The greatest happiness of the greatest number is the foundation of morals and legislation” – Jeremy Bentham

“Happiness is not an ideal of reason but of imagination” – Immanuel Kant

“To be is to be perceived” (“Esse est percipi”)– Bishop George Berkeley

The grass is always greener where you water it.   ~Anonymous

"I've always wondered why meteorites land in craters."   - Sabine Hossenfelder

“No man's knowledge here can go beyond his experience” – John Locke

“God is not willing to do everything, and thus take away our free will and that share of glory which belongs to us” – Niccolo Machiavelli

“Liberty consists in doing what one desires” – John Stuart Mill

“It is undesirable to believe a proposition when there is no ground whatever for supposing it true” – Bertrand Russell

Outside noisy; inside empty. ~ Chinese Proverb

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” Oscar Wilde

“The living are only a species of the dead, and a rare species at that.” Nietzsche

“God is dead! He remains dead! And we have killed him.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

‘Two things awe me most, the starry sky above me and the moral law within me.’ Immanuel Kant

‘The more successful the villain, the more successful the picture.’ Alfred Hitchcock

Two wrongs do not make a right, but three lefts do.

Myth is already enlightenment, and enlightenment reverts to mythology. ~ Adorno/Horkheimer


Infinity overflows the thought that thinks it.  ~ Emmanuel Levinas: 

“I think therefore I am” (“Cogito, ergo sum”) – René Descartes

“He who thinks great thoughts, often makes great errors” – Martin Heidegger

But man, proud man, dressed in a little brief authority, most ignorant of what he’s most assured, his glassy essence, like an angry ape, plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven as make the angels weep. — William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure

It must have required many ages to discover that a pair of birds and a couple of days were both instances of the number 2: the degree of abstraction involved is far from easy. Bertrand Russell