Great Henry David Thoreau Quotes

I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.


I had three chairs in my house; one for solitude, two for friendship, three for society.


I never found a companion that was so companionable as solitude.


If a plant cannot live according to its nature, it dies; and so a man.


Unjust laws exist: shall we be content to obey them, or shall we endeavor to amend them, and obey them until we have succeeded, or shall we transgress them at once?


Let your life be a counter friction to stop the machine.


Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.


That government is best which governs least.


If the machine of government is of such a nature that it requires you to be the agent of injustice to another, then, I say, break the law.


Most of the luxuries and many of the so-called comforts of life are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind.


Wealth is the ability to fully experience life.


However, mean your life is, meet it and live it.


Every morning was a cheerful invitation to make my life of equal simplicity, and I may say innocence, with Nature herself.


Money is not required to buy one necessity of the soul.


As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness weakness.


If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.


Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it.


It is what a man thinks of himself that really determines his fate.


What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compared to what lives within us.


The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.


I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by conscious endeavor.


Education makes a straight ditch of a free meandering brook.


In the long run, men hit only what they aim at. Therefore, they had better aim at something high.


My eye is educated to discover anything on the ground, as chestnuts, etc. It is probably wholesomer to look at the ground much than at the heavens.


I was determined to know beans.


I am still a learner, not a teacher, feeding somewhat omnivorously, browsing both stalk & leaves


Those things for which the most money is demanded are never the things which the student most wants. Tuition, for instance, is an important item in the term bill, while for the far more valuable education which he gets by associating with the most cultivated of his contemporaries no charge is made.