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The brilliant author of my favorite book, Walden, Henry David Thoreau was also a master minimalist, philosopher, poet and transcendentalist.
He was an advocate of simple living, minimalism, vegetarianism, anti-consumerism and non-conformity. And 160+ years later, those values still ring true. Here are some of his best inspirational quotes.
"All good things are wild and free."
"The question is not what you look at, but what you see."
"Things do not change, we do."
"The only people who ever get anyplace interesting are the people who get lost."
"Be yourself - not your idea of what you think somebody else's idea of yourself should be."
"Do not lose hold of your dreams or aspirations. For if you do, you may still exist but you have ceased to live."
"When it's time to die, let us not discover that we have never lived."
"Never look back - unless you're planning to go that way."
"Simplify your life. Don't waste the years struggling for things that are unimportant. Don't burden yourself with possessions. Keep your needs and wants simple and enjoy what you have. Don't destroy your peace of mind by looking back, worrying about the past. Live in the present. Simplify!"
"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you've imagined."
"Do what you love. Know your own bone; gnaw at it, bury it, unearth it, and gnaw it still."
"You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island of opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land; there is no other life but this."
"This world is but a canvas to our imagination."
"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."
"If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them."
"The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run."
"Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify."
"Enthusiasm is a supernatural serenity."
"One farmer says to me, 'You cannot live on vegetable food solely, for it furnishes nothing to make bones with;' and so he religiously devotes a part of his day to supplying his system with the raw material of bones; walking all the while he talks behind his oxen, which, with vegetable-made bones, jerk him and his lumbering plow along in spite of every obstacle."
"It often happens that a man develops a deeper love and friendship with his pet cat or dog than he does with most of the other humans in his life."