Saul Bellow Quotes

Born June 10, 1915
Died April 05, 2005

Why should I know Saul Bellow?

Saul Bellow was a Canadian-American Pulitzer Prize and Nobel Prize winning writer.

Best Quotes by Saul Bellow

“A great deal of intelligence can be invested in ignorance when the need for illusion is deep.”

Saul Bellow
To Jerusalem and Back

“A man is only as good as what he loves.”

Saul Bellow

“A man should be able to hear, and to bear, the worst that could be said of him.”

Saul Bellow

“A plan relieves you of the torment of choice.”

Saul Bellow

“A writer is a reader moved to emulation.”

Saul Bellow

“As long as I could keep improving my mind, I figured, I was doing okay.”

Saul Bellow
The Adventures of Augie March

“Associate with the noblest people you can find; read the best books; live with the mighty; but learn to be happy alone.”

Saul Bellow
Ravelstein

“Being right was largely a matter of explanations.”

Saul Bellow
Mr. Sammler's Planet

“Boredom is the conviction that you can't change... the shriek of unused capacities.”

Saul Bellow
The Adventures of Augie March

“Every treasure is guarded by dragons. That's how you can tell it's valuable.”

Saul Bellow
Herzog

“Everybody needs his memories. They keep the wolf of insignificance from the door.”

Saul Bellow

“Fidelity is for phonographs.”

Saul Bellow
Humboldt's Gift

“I am a phoenix who runs after arsonists.”

Saul Bellow

“I am a true adorer of life, and if I can't reach as high as the face of it, I plant my kiss somewhere lower down. Those who understand will require no further explanation.”

Saul Bellow
Henderson the Rain King

“I feel that art has something to do with the achievement of stillness in the midst of chaos. A stillness which characterizes prayer, too, and the eye of the storm. I think that art has something to do with an arrest of attention in the midst of distraction.”

Saul Bellow

“I love solitude but I prize it most when company is available.”

Saul Bellow

“I mean you have been disappointed in love, but don't you know how many things there are to be disappointed in besides love? You are lucky to be still disappointed in love. Later it may be even more terrible.”

Saul Bellow
The Adventures of Augie March

“I want to tell you, don't marry suffering. Some people do. They get married to it, and sleep and eat together, just as husband and wife. If they go with joy they think it's adultery.”

Saul Bellow
Seize the Day

“I've discovered that rejections are not altogether a bad thing. They teach a writer to rely on his own judgment and to say in his heart of hearts, "To hell with you.”

Saul Bellow

“In an age of madness, to expect to be untouched by madness is a form of madness. But the pursuit of sanity can be a form of madness, too.”

Saul Bellow

“In every community there is a class of people profoundly dangerous to the rest. I don't mean the criminals. For them we have punitive sanctions. I mean the leaders. Invariably the most dangerous people seek the power. While in the parlors of indignation the right-thinking citizen brings his heart to a boil.”

Saul Bellow
Herzog

“It is wrong to turn a man (a subject) into a thing (an object). By
means of spiritual dialogue, the I-It relationship becomes an I-Thou
relationship. God comes and goes in man's soul. And men come and go in each other's souls. Sometimes they come and go in each other's beds, too.”

Saul Bellow
Herzog

“It seems, after all that there are no non-peculiar people.”

Saul Bellow
Humboldt's Gift

“It would not be practical for her to hate herself. Luckily, God sends a substitute, a husband.”

Saul Bellow
Herzog

“It's usually the selfish people who are loved the most. They do what you deny yourself, and you love them for it. You give them your heart.”

Saul Bellow

“Life, said Samuel Butler, is like giving a concert on the violin while learning to play the instrument—that, friends, is real wisdom.”

Saul Bellow

“Live or die, but don't poison everything.”

Saul Bellow
Herzog

“One thought-murder a day keeps the psychiatrist away.”

Saul Bellow

“People can lose their lives in libraries. They ought to be warned.”

Saul Bellow

“People don't realize how much they are in the grip of ideas. We live among ideas much more than we live in nature.”

Saul Bellow

“Readiness to answer all questions is the infallible sign of stupidity.”

Saul Bellow
Herzog

“She was what we used to call a suicide blonde-- dyed by her own hand.”

Saul Bellow

“She's very pretty but she's honey from the icebox, if you know what I mean. Cold sweets won't spread.”

Saul Bellow
Humboldt's Gift

“Society is what beats me. Alone I can be pretty good, but let me go among people and there’s the devil to pay.”

Saul Bellow
Henderson the Rain King

“Some people, if they didn't make it hard for themselves, might fall asleep.”

Saul Bellow
The Adventures of Augie March

“The earth is literally a mirror of thoughts. Objects themselves are embodied thoughts. Death is the dark backing that a mirror needs if we are to see anything.”

Saul Bellow
Humboldt's Gift

“The past is no good to us. The future is full of anxiety. Only the present is real — the here-and-now. Seize the day.”

Saul Bellow
Seize the Day

“Unexpected intrusions of beauty. This is what life is.”

Saul Bellow
Herzog

“Unless you're completely exploded, there's always something to be grateful for.”

Saul Bellow
Herzog

“We are always looking for the book it is necessary to read next.”

Saul Bellow

“We are funny creatures. We don't see the stars as they are, so why do we love them? They are not small gold objects, but endless fire.”

Saul Bellow
Henderson the Rain King

“When we ask for advice, we are usually looking for an accomplice.”

Saul Bellow

“Who is the Tolstoy of the Zulus? The Proust of the Papuans? I'd be happy to read them.”

Saul Bellow

“You can know a man by his devils and the way he gives hurts.”

Saul Bellow

“You can spend the entire second half of your life recovering from the mistakes of the first half.”

Saul Bellow
Seize the Day

“You don't know the meaning of true love if you think it can be deliberately selected. You just love, that's all. A natural force, irresistible.”

Saul Bellow
Henderson the Rain King

“You have to fight for your life. That's the chief condition on which you hold it.”

Saul Bellow
Herzog

“You never have to change anything you got up in the middle of the night to write.”

Saul Bellow