Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes

** Bear in mind, I am not a professional quote-collector; merely a sloppy (but determined) amateur. Over a period of about 20 years, I’ve created  a ‘Quotations’ document that now runs to 135 pages…& it’s always growing. These Emerson quotations are just what came up when I did a ‘Find’ on Emerson in the document. 

“It is one of the beautiful compensations of life, that no man can sincerely help another without helping himself.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson American writer and philosopher (1803-1882)

“Do not follow where the path may lead…go instead where there is no path, and leave a trail.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 – 1882) 

“Life consists of what a person is thinking about all day.” ~ Emerson

“The crime which bankrupts men and nations is that of turning aside from one’s main purpose to serve a job here and there.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

“It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“A weed is a plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“As long as a man stands in his own way, everything seems to be in his way.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson, American writer and philosopher (1803-1882) 

“Nothing is secure but life, transition, the energizing spirit… No truth so sublime but it may be trivial tomorrow in the light of new thoughts.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“He then learns that in going down into the secrets of his own mind he has descended into the secrets of all minds.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“What lies behind us and what lies ahead are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

On Success: “To laugh often and love much; to win the respect of intelligent persons and the affection of children; to earn the approbation of honest citizens and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to give of oneself; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to have played and laughed with enthusiasm and sung with exultation; to know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived…this is to have succeeded.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and tomorrow speak what tomorrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. –  'Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.' –  Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson (I found this quote here)