Jorge Luis Borges Quotes


Type: Writer, poet

Born: 24 August 1899

Died: 14 June 1986

Jorge Francisco Isidoro Luis Borges Acevedo was an Argentine writer and poet born in Buenos Aires. In 1914, his family moved to Switzerland where he attended school and traveled to Spain. On his return to Argentina in 1921, Borges began publishing his poems and essays in Surrealist literary journals. He also worked as a librarian and public lecturer. Borges was fluent in several languages. He was a target of political persecution during the Peron regime and supported the military juntas that overthrew it.

Jorge Luis Borges Quotes

Being with you and not being with you is the only way I have to measure time.

We spend our lives waiting for our book and it never comes.

I am not sure that I exist, actually. I am all the writers that I have read, all the people that I have met, all the women that I have loved; all the cities I have visited.

He thought that the rose was to be found in its own eternity and not in his words; and that we may mention or allude to a thing, but not express it.

I...have always known that my destiny was, above all, a literary destiny - that bad things and some good things would happen to me, but that, in the long run, all of it would be converted
into words. Particularly the bad things, since happiness does not need to be transformed: happiness is its own end.

How can we manage to illuminate the pathos of our lives?

Many of the characters are fools and they're always playing tricks on me
and treating me badly.

A book is more than a verbal structure or series of verbal structures; it is the dialogue it establishes with its reader and the intonation it imposes upon his voice and the changing and durable images it leaves in his memory. A book is not an isolated being: it is a relationship, an axis of innumerable relationships.

Let others pride themselves about how many pages they have written; I'd rather boast about the ones I've read.

... in art nothing is more secondary than the author's intentions.

You have wakened not out of sleep, but into a prior dream, and that dream lies within another, and so on, to infinity, which is the number of grains of sand. The path that you are to take is endless, and you will die before you have truly awakened.

Nothing is built on stone; All is built on sand, but we must build as if the sand were stone.

Whatever one man does, it is as if all men did it. For that reason, it is not unfair that one disobedience in a garden should contaminate all humanity; for that reason it is not unjust that the crucifixion of a single Jew should be sufficient to save it.

He was very religious; he believed that he had a secret pact with God which exempted him from doing good in exchange for prayers and piety.

I prayed aloud, less to plead for divine favor than to intimidate the tribe with articulate speech.

I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library.

I cannot sleep unless I am surrounded by books.

Personally, I am a hedonistic reader; I have never read a book merely because it was ancient. I read books for the aesthetic emotions they offer me, and I ignore the commentaries and criticism.

Paradise will be a kind of library

Leaving behind the babble of the plaza, I enter the Library. I feel, almost physically, the gravitation of the books, the enveloping serenity of order, time magically dessicated and preserved.

It's a shame that we have to choose between two such second-rate countries as the USSR and the USA.

The thought came over me that never would one full and absolute moment, containing all the others, justify my life, that all of my instants would be provisional phases, annihilators of the past turned to face the future, and that beyond the episodic, the present, the circumstantial, we were nobody.

One of the schools in Tlön has reached the point of denying time. It reasons that the present is undefined, that the future has no other reality than as present hope, that the past is no more than present memory.

There are those who seek the love of a woman to forget her, to not think about her.

Reading . . . is an activity subsequent to writing: more resigned, more civil, more intellectual.

Yo, que me figuraba el Paraíso bajo la especie de una biblioteca.

We are as ignorant of the meaning of the dragon as we are of the meaning of the universe.

They seek neither truth nor likelihood; they seek astonishment. They think metaphysics is a branch of the literature of fantasy

Reality is not always probable, or likely.

Another school declares that all time has already transpired and that our life is only the crepuscular and no doubt falsified and mutilated memory or reflection of an irrecoverable process.

I suspected once that any human life, however intricate and full it might be, consisted in reality of one moment: the moment when a man knows for all time who he is.

Russel /.../ antar att planeten har blivit skapad för några minuter sedan, >utrustad< med en mänsklighet som >minns< ett illusoriskt förflutet.

En av lärorna på Tlön går så långt att den förnekar tiden: den tänker sig att nuet är oändligt, att framtiden inte är verklig annat än som en förväntan i nuet, att det förflutna inte är verkligt annat än som ett minne i nuet.

I reread these negative remarks and realize that I do not know whether music can despair of music or marble of marble. I do know that literature is an art that can foresee the time when it will be silenced, an art that can become inflamed with its own virtue, fall in love with its own decline, and court its own demise.

Art always opts for the individual, the concrete; art is not Platonic.

It must be that I am not made to be a dead man, but these places and this discussion seem like a dream, and not a dream dreamed by me but by someone else still to be born.

The story of two dreams is a coincidence, a line drawn by chance, like the shapes of lions or horses that are sometimes formed by clouds.

There is an hour of the afternoon when the plain is on the verge of saying something. It never says, or perhaps it says it infinitely, or perhaps we do not understand it, or we understand it and it is untranslatable as music.

We have a very precise image - an image at times shameless - of what we have lost, but we are ignorant of what may follow or replace it.

The truth is that we all live by leaving behind; no doubt we all profoundly know that we are immortal and that sooner or later every man will do all things and know everything.

Before unearthing this letter, I had questioned myself about the ways in which a book can be infinite. I could think of nothing other than a cyclic volume, a circular one. A book whose last page was identical with the first, a book which had the possibility of continuing indefinitely.

Tearing money is an impiety, like throwing away bread.

... no se puede medir el tiempo por días, como el dinero por centavos o pesos, porque los pesos son iguales y cada día es distinto y tal vez cada hora.

Literature is not exhaustible, for the sufficient and simple reason that a single book is not.

En mi época no había Best-Sellers y no podíamos prostituírnos. No había quien comprara nuestra prostitución.

So witless did these ideas strike me as being, so sweeping and pompous the way they were expressed, that I associated them immediately with literature.

Bana aynı anda hem 800,000 kitabı hem de karanlığı veren Tanrı'nın muhteşem ironisi

Por lo demás, la literatura no es otra cosa que un sueño dirigido.

The metaphysicians of Tlön are not looking for truth, nor even for an approximation of it; they are after a kind of amazement.

Time is forever dividing itself toward innumerable futures and in one of them I am your enemy.

Sabemos que el pasado, el presente y el porvenir ya están, minucia por minucia, en la profética mente de Dios, en Su eternidad; lo extraño es que los hombres puedan mirar, indefinidamente, hacia atrás pero no hacia adelante.

Δεν μπορώ να σας εξηγήσω. Όλες οι λέξεις ανάμεσα σε δύο ανθρώπους απαιτούν μία κοινή εμπ%C

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