Jorge Luis Borges Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 207 quotes)
If I could live again my life,In the next - I'll try,- to make more mistakes,I won't try to be so perfect,I'll be more relaxed...I'll take fewer things seriously..I'll take more risks,I'll take more trips,I'll watch more sunsets,I'll climb more mountains,I'll swim more rivers,I'll go to more places I've never beenI'll eat more ice ...I'll have more real problems and less imaginary onesIf I could live again - I will travel light If I could live again - I'll try to work bare feet at the beginning of spring till the end of autumn,I'll watch more sunrises ...If I have the life to live
He told me that in 1886 he had invented an original system of numbering and that in a very few days he had gone beyond the twenty-four-thousand mark. He had not written it down, since anything he thought of once would never be lost to him. His first stimulus was, I think, his discomfort at the fact that the famous thirty-three gauchos of Uruguayan history should require two signs and two words, in place of a single word and a single sign. He then applied this absurd principle to the other numbers. In place of seven thousand thirteen he would say (for example) Maximo Prez; in place of seven thousand fourteen, The Railroad; other numbers were Luis Melin Lafinur, Olimar, sulphur, the reins, the whale, the gas, the caldron, Napoleon, Agustin de Vedia. In place of five hundred, he would say nine. Each word had a particular sign, a kind of mark; the last in the series were very complicated...
Their books are also different. Works of fiction contain a single plot, with all its imaginable permutations. Those of a philosophical nature invariably include both the thesis and the antithesis, the rigorous pro and con of a doctrine. A book which does not contain its counterbook is considered incomplete.
This has happened and will happen again,' said Euphorbus. 'You are not lighting a pyre, you are lighting a labyrinth of flames. If all the fires I have seen were gathered together here, they would not fit on earth and the angels would be blinded. I have said this many times.' Then he cried out, because the flames had reached him.
In the critic's vocabulary, the word "precursor" is indispensable, but it should be cleansed of all connotations of polemic or rivalry. The fact is that every writer creates his own precursors. His work modifies our conception of the past, as it will modify the future."-- Essay: "Kafka and his Precursors
Hell had become, over the years, a wearisome speculation. Even its proselytizers have neglected it, abandoning the poor, but serviceable, human allusion which the ecclesiastic fires of the Holy Office once had in this world: a temporal torment, of course, but one that was not unworthy, within its terrestrial limitations, of being a metaphor for the immortal, for the perfect pain without destruction that the objects of divine wrath will forever endure. Whether or not this hypothesis is satisfactoy, an increasing lassitude in the propaganda of the institution is indisputable. (Do not be alarmed; I use propaganda here not in its commercial but rather in its Catholic genealogy: a congregation of cardinals.)
Emma dropped the letter. The first thing she felt was a sinking in her stomach and a trembling in her knees; then, a sense of blind guilt, of unreality, of cold, of fear; then, a desire for this day to be past. Then immediately she realized that such a wish was pointless, for her father's death was the only thing that had happened in the world, and it would go on happening, endlessly, forever after.
The aesthetic event is something as evident, as immediate, as indefinable as love, the taste of fruit, as water. We feel poetry as we feel the closeness of a woman, or as we feel a mountain or a bay. If we feel it immediately, why dilute it further with words, which no doubt will be weaker than our feelings?
I know of a wild region whose librarians repudiate the vain superstitious custom of seeking any sense in books and compare it to looking for meaning in dreams or in the chaotic lines of one's hands . . . They admit that the inventors of writing imitated the twenty-five natural symbols, but they maintain that this application is accidental and that books in themselves mean nothing. This opinion - we shall see - is not altogether false.
A man sets out to draw the world. As the years go by, he peoples a space with images of provinces, kingdoms, mountains, bays, ships, islands, fishes, rooms, instruments, stars, horses, and individuals. A short time before he dies, he discovers that the patient labyrinth of lines traces the lineaments of his own face.