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Leo Tolstoy

Leo Tolstoy 1828-1910
Russian Writer & Philosopher
The sole meaning of life is to serve humanity
There is no greatness where there is no simplicity, goodness and truth
It is amazing how complete is the delusion that beauty is goodness
It is a sin not to be engaged in work, even if it is not necessary for you to make your living with every day work
The two most powerful warriors are patience and time
One of the first conditions of happiness is that the link between man and nature shall not be broken
If you want to be happy, be
Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself
Without knowing what I am and why I am here, life is impossible
The greater the state, the more wrong and cruel its patriotism, and the greater is the the sum of suffering upon which its power is founded
He never chooses an opinion; he just wears whatever happens to be in style
We must not only cease our present desire for the growth of the state, but we must desire it decrease, its weakening
Truth, like gold, is to be obtained not by its growth, but by washing away from it all that is not gold
Government is an association of men who do violence to the rest of us
True life is lived when tiny changes occur
All happy familes resemble one another, each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way
If so many men, so many minds, certainly so many hearts, so many kinds of love
Nothing can make a person feel more noble than work. Without work, a person cannot have human dignity. It is because of this that idle people are so much concerned by the superficial, outer expression of their importance; they know that without this, other people would despise them
Religion can enlighten philosophical meditations; philosophical meditations can strengthen religion. Therefore try to communicate both with truly religious people and truly good philosophers, alive and dead
Life is a place of service, and in that service one has to suffer a great deal that is hard to bear, but more often to experience a great deal of joy. But that Joy can be real only if people look upon their life as a service, and have a definite object in life outside themselves and their personal happiness
Art is a human activity consisting in this, that one man consciously, by means of certain external signs, hands on to others feelings he has lived through, and that other people are infected by these feelings, and also experience them.
The idea is shared by many that life is a vale of tears is just as false as the idea shared by the great majority, the idea to which youth and health and riches incline you, that life is a place of entertainment
I sit on a man’s back, choking him and making him carry me, and yet assure myself and others that I am very sorry for him and wish to ease his lot by all possible means – except by getting off his back