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Eric Hoffer Quotes


An American writer on social issues.
(1902 - 1983)

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A dissenting minority feels free only when it can impose its will on the majority: what it abominates most is the dissent of the majority.
 

A great man's greatest good luck is to die at the right time.
 

A grievance is most poignant when almost redressed.
 

A heresy can spring only from a system that is in full vigor.
 

A man by himself is in bad company.
 

A nation without dregs and malcontents is orderly, peaceful and pleasant, but perhaps without the seed of things to come.
 

A preoccupation with the future not only prevents us from seeing the present as it is, but often prompts us to rearrange the past.
[The Present]
 

Absolute faith corrupts as absolutely as absolute power.
[Faith]
 

Action is at bottom a swinging and flailing of the arms to regain one's balance and keep afloat.
[Action]
 

An empty head is not really empty; it is stuffed with rubbish. Hence the difficulty of forcing anything into an empty head.
 

Animals often strike us as passionate machines.
 

Call not that man wretched, who whatever ills he suffers, has a child to love.
 

Charlatanism of some degree is indispensable to effective leadership.
 

Children are the keys of paradise.
 

Compassion alone stands apart from the continuous traffic between good and evil proceeding within us.
 

Compassion is the antitoxin of the soul: where there is compassion even the most poisonous impulses remain relatively harmless.
 

Craving, not having, is the mother of a reckless giving of oneself.
 

Creativity is the ability to introduce order into the randomness of nature.
[Creativity]
 

Disappointment is a sort of bankruptcy - the bankruptcy of a soul that expends too much in hope and expectation.
[Disappointment]
 

Dissipation is a form of self-sacrifice.
 


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