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 :: 1911-, Rumanian-born French Philosopher

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One does not inhabit a country; one inhabits a language. That is our country, our fatherland --and no other.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Language]

 

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Only one endowed with restless vitality is susceptible to pessimism. You become a pessimist --a demonic, elemental, bestial pessimist --only when life has been defeated many times in its fight against depression.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Pessimism]

 

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Progress is the injustice each generation commits with regard to its predecessors.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Injustice]

 

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Reason is a whore, surviving by simulation, versatility, and shamelessness.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Reason]

 

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Show me one thing here on earth which has begun well and not ended badly. The proudest palpitations are engulfed in a sewer, where they cease throbbing, as though having reached their natural term: this downfall constitutes the heart's drama and the negative meaning of history.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Decay]

 

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Speech and silence. We feel safer with a madman who talks than with one who cannot open his mouth.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Speech]

 

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Sperm is a bandit in its pure state.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Procreation]

 

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The fact that life has no meaning is a reason to live --moreover, the only one.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Meaning of Life]

 

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The fanatic is incorruptible: if he kills for an idea, he can just as well get himself killed for one; in either case, tyrant or martyr, he is a monster.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Fanatics and Fanaticism]

 

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The mind is the result of the torments the flesh undergoes or inflicts upon itself.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Mind]

 

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The obsession with suicide is characteristic of the man who can neither live nor die, and whose attention never swerves from this double impossibility.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Suicide]

 

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The source of our actions resides in an unconscious propensity to regard ourselves as the center, the cause, and the conclusion of time. Our reflexes and our pride transform into a planet the parcel of flesh and consciousness we are.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Egotism]

 

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There is no means of proving it is preferable to be than not to be.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Existence]

 

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Those who believe in their truth -- the only ones whose imprint is retained by the memory of men -- leave the earth behind them strewn with corpses. Religions number in their ledgers more murders than the bloodiest tyrannies account for, and those whom humanity has called divine far surpass the most conscientious murderers in their thirst for slaughter.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Bigotry]

 

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To exist is a habit I do not despair of acquiring.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Habit]

 

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To exist is equivalent to an act of faith, a protest against the truth, an interminable prayer. As soon as they consent to live, the unbeliever and the man of faith are fundamentally the same, since both have made the only decision that defines a being.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Existence]

 

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To want fame is to prefer dying scorned than forgotten.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Fame]

 

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Torment, for some men, is a need, an appetite, and an accomplishment.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Torture]

 

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Tyranny destroys or strengthens the individual; freedom enervates him, until he becomes no more than a puppet. Man has more chances of saving himself by hell than by paradise.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Oppression]

 

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We derive our vitality from our store of madness.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Vitality]

 

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