75 philosophical and reflective phrases you should know

The word philosophiafrom which the term current Philosophy comes, literally means love for wisdom.

The human being has always investigated in the study of the problems he encountered along the journey through his own existence, and from this study philosophy is born.

In the course of history, philosophers, thinkers and why not all kinds of people at some point have recorded those philosophical thoughts that try to give us answers to some of the problems they have encountered and that many times we have also encountered ourselves.

Philosophical phrases with which to reflect on life

Next we’ve listed the 75 most relevant philosophical phrases that, under our understanding, we should all know and hopefully shed some light on some existential question that some of you may have.

1. He who seeks to secure the welfare of others has already secured his own. (Confucius)

What is said is not the same as what is done, and sometimes it can be contradictory.

2. The unexamined life isn’t worth it. (Socrates)

The study of life brings knowledge to every human being.

3. When you take a step beyond the world system, all you do is excite an inquisitive mood that can never be satisfied. (David Hume)

The development of personal humour can take us to places we didn’t suspect.

4. We ignore, it is true, the way in which these bodies act among themselves. Their forces and energies are totally incomprehensible. (David Hume)

The first step towards wisdom is the recognition of ignorance.

5. There is only happiness where there is virtue and serious effort, because life is not a game. (Aristotle)

Achieving happiness can be very difficult.

6. Happiness is not an ideal of reason, but of imagination. (Immanuel Kant)

The happiness we imagine may not be a realistic idea.

7. We seek happiness, but without knowing where, as drunks seek their home, knowing that they have one. (Voltaire)

We all want to reach happiness but we don’t know how to reach it.

8. To fall in love is to be enchanted by something, and something can only be enchanted if it is or seems to be perfection. (José Ortega y Gasset)

We tend to fall in love with what we think most closely resembles perfection.

9. To love is to find your own happiness in the happiness of another. (Gottfried Leibniz)

When you love, you put your partner’s happiness before your own.

10. Being deeply loved gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage. (Lao Tse)

Loving and being loved can take us a long way.

11. Each solution raises a new question. (David Hume)

There’s no answer to everything.

12. The day when it is possible for a woman to love not out of weakness but out of strength, not to escape from herself but to find herself, not to humble herself but to reaffirm herself; that day will be for her, as it is for man, a source of life. (Simone de Beauvoir)

Love cannot be imposed, it must come from us.

13. Justice without mercy is cruelty. (Thomas Aquinas)

Applying justice severely can lead to cruel acts.
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14. The virtuous is content to dream what the sinner accomplishes in life. (Plato)

Maybe we all want to sin at some point in our lives.

15. If you already know what you have to do and you don’t do it then you’re worse off than before. (Confucius)

First I think, then I act.

16. Thinking and loving are different things. Thought itself is inaccessible to love. (Friedrich Hegel)

Love can be irrational.

17. He admires the one who tries, even if he fails. (Seneca)

It is not the one who fails who loses, but the one who does not try.
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18. He’s afraid of the one-book man. (Thomas Aquinas)

Education is fundamental to human development.

19. The wise man can change his mind. The fool, never. (Kant)

Acknowledging our mistake makes us wiser.

20. I think, therefore I am. (Descartes)

Without thought we are nothing.

21. Life has a meaning if you want to give it to them. (Jean-Paul Sartre)

We can make sense of our lives if we want to.

22. There is someone so intelligent that he learns from the experience of others. (Voltaire)

Seeing the error of others and trying not to make it is doubly beneficial to us.

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Everything that is done out of love is done beyond good and evil. (Nietzsche)

In love there is no right or wrong.

24. Youth is the moment to study wisdom; old age is the moment to practice it. (Jacques Rousseau)

Wisdom costs us a lifetime to attain.

25. Happiness is a wonderful article: the more you give, the more you have left. (Blaise Pascal)

Your happiness begins with that of others.

Just as it is better to enlighten than to shine, so it is greater to give to others the things contemplated than only to contemplate them. (Thomas Aquinas)

Sharing makes us great as a person.

27. Life would be tragic if not funny (Stephen Hawking)

Humor is a great ally in complicated situations.

28. Destiny is the one who shuffles the cards, but we who play them. (Arthur Schopenhauer)

How we play our tricks in life will lead us down different paths.

29. The least frequent thing in this world is to live. Most people exist, that’s all. (Oscar Wilde)

First there is thought and then existence.

30. Choose a job you like and you won’t have to work a day in your life. (Confucius)

Work, if it’s enjoyable, becomes just fun.

31. Falling in love is a state of mental misery in which the life of our consciousness narrows, impoverishes and paralyzes. (Ortega y Gasset)

Being in love may not let us think clearly.

32. The worst fight is the one that’s not done. (Karl Marx)

We must fight for a better future for all people.

33. We all live with the goal of being happy; our lives are all different and yet the same. (Anna Frank)

The search for happiness accompanies us all our lives.

34. Men always forget that human happiness is a disposition of the mind and not a condition of circumstances. (Locke)

Happiness is only in our mind.

35. To be in very prolonged leisure, is not rest, but laziness. (Seneca)

Work dignifies us and focuses us on our personal goals.

36. When the rich make war, it’s the poor who die. (Jean-Paul Sartre)

Class difference is a scourge that impoverishes us as individuals.

37. I do not agree with what you say, but with my life I will defend your right to express it. (Voltaire)

Freedom of expression is a fundamental right.

38. The secret of happiness is not always doing what you want, but always wanting what you do. (Léon Tolstói)

We must know which path we want to follow in order to be able to reach happiness, because in the path is one’s own happiness.

39. I am not proud, but happy, and happiness blinds sometimes more than pride. (Alejandro Dumas)

When one is happy we can sometimes not think too clearly.

40. The greatest declaration of love is that which is not made; the man who feels much speaks little. (Plato)

Deeds are worth more than words.

41. He who has a reason to live can face all the “hows”. (Nietzsche)

Our determination has no barriers.

42. Ignorance affirms or denies outright; science doubts. (Voltaire)

The ignorant cannot see his own ignorance.

43. The problem is, you think you have time. (Buddha)

Our time is a finite good.

44. The happiness that is lived derives from the love that is given, and later that love will be the happiness of oneself. (Isabel Allende)

Our own happiness begins with that of others.

45. A healthy mind in a healthy body is a brief but broad description of a state of happiness in this world. (Locke)

To be happy it is important to be in contact with our mind and body and to work for their correct functioning.

46. The only custom to teach children is not to submit to any. (Jacques Rousseau)

We must do that which makes us happy, not that which is imposed on us.

47. True philosophers are those who like to contemplate the truth. (Plato)

Philosophy is also the search for truth.

48. The surest way not to become too unhappy is not to pretend to be too happy. (Arthur Schopenhauer)

If we don’t seek happiness, we’ll never reach it.

49. To be surprised, to be surprised, is to begin to understand. (Ortega y Gasset)

Knowledge always comes from an initial doubt.

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Nothing great has been done in the world without a great passion. (Friedrich Hegel)

Great deeds could not be accomplished without passion and determination.

51. The ignorant asserts, the wise doubt and reflect. (Aristotle)

Aristotle explains in this sentence why some people develop intellectually and others do not.

52. The butterfly will remember forever that it was a worm. (Mario Benedetti)

We must remember where we came from.

53. Time is the best author: it always finds a perfect ending. (Charles Chaplin)

Time never stops… We must take advantage of it!

54. It matters much more what you think of yourself than what others think of you. (Seneca)

Our opinion of ourselves makes us who we are.

55. The time you enjoy wasting was not wasted. (John Lennon)

The time we enjoy has always been well invested.

56. One minute that passes is unrecoverable. Knowing this, how can we waste so many hours? (Ghandi)

Every minute we waste doing something we don’t like is a minute of our life that we will never get back.

57. The teacher’s job is not so much to teach everything that can be learned as to generate in the student love and esteem for knowledge. (Locke)

The love of learning will help us grow as people.

58. Remembering is easy for the one who has memory. Forgetting is hard for someone with a heart. (Gabriel García Márquez)

Our love clouds our reason.

59. Immature love says, “I love you because I need you.” Mature love says, “I need you because I love you.” (Erich Fromm)

Loving someone can create a real dependence on that person.

60. Where there is education there is no distinction of classes. (Confucius)

Education equates us in the class struggle.

61. The unreality of what is looked at gives reality to the look. (Octavian Peace)

It all depends on how you look at things.

62. Some believe that to be friends is enough to want, as if to be healthy is enough to want health. (Aristotle)

Friendship can be cultivated over time.

63. Does he who always waits suffer more than he who never waited for anyone? (Pablo Neruda)

Nice existential phrase of Pablo Neruda about someone who wants something.

64. You can only make progress when you think big, you can only make progress when you look far away. (Ortega y Gasset)

Having high expectations can lead to great goals.

65. I call myself a feminist man. Isn’t that what you call someone who fights for women’s rights? (Dalai Lama)

The Dalai Lama gives us a lesson on how we should fight for gender equality.

66. Live the way you’d want to live if you died tomorrow. (Kant)

Make the most of every minute of your life.

67. The bravest act is to think for yourself. Out loud. (Coco Chanel)

Free thought and freedom of expression are fundamental human rights.

68. Nothing is distributed more equitably than reason: everyone is convinced that they have enough. (Descartes)

Believing in the power of reason can hide the truth from us.

69. Be kind to people when you go up; you’ll find them all when you go down. (Eduard Punset)

Life is full of ups and downs and we may need the one we least imagine.

70. A hundred years of injustice don’t make right. (Friedrich Hegel)

An injustice is always an injustice.

71. With the exception of man, no being marvels at his own existence. (Arthur Schopenhauer)

Self-centeredness is an innate part of the human being.

72. It’s very difficult to think nobly when you think only for a living. (Jacques Rousseau)

The development of our intellect is something that needs time and effort.

73. If you don’t like the way you’re going, start paving another one. (Dolly Parton)

When you don’t like something, change it!

74. There is no barrier, lock or bolt that you can impose on the freedom of my mind. (Virginia Wolf)

Free thought has no frontiers.

75. Only through education can man become man. Man is nothing more than what education makes of him. (Kant)

Without education, people cannot develop to their full potential.