Thought Catalog
September 2, 2013

41 Completely Badgirl Anaïs Nin Quotes

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What is the issue?
Nicki Varkevisser
Nicki Varkevisser
Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.
If you do not breathe through writing, if you do not cry out in writing, or sing in writing, then don’t write, because our culture has no use for it.
I, with a deeper instinct, choose a man who compels my strength, who makes enormous demands on me, who does not doubt my courage or my toughness, who does not believe me naive or innocent, who has the courage to treat me like a woman.
Ordinary life does not interest me.
Life is truly known only to those who suffer, lose, endure adversity and stumble from defeat to defeat.
Good things happen to those who hustle.
I am only responsible for my own heart, you offered yours up for the smashing my darling. Only a fool would give out such a vital organ.
How wrong it is for a woman to expect the man to build the world she wants, rather than to create it herself.
Shame is the lie someone told you about yourself.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
Each friend represents a world in us, a world not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.
Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.
There are only two kinds of freedom in the world; the freedom of the rich and powerful, and the freedom of the artist and the monk who renounces possessions.
I am an excitable person who only understands life lyrically, musically, in whom feelings are much stronger as reason. I am so thirsty for the marvelous that only the marvelous has power over me. Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go. Reality doesn’t impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another. No more walls.
Every word you wrote I ate, as if it were manna. Finding one’s self in a book is a second birth; and you are the only one who knows that at times men behave like women and women like men, and that all these distinctions are mock distinctions.
Love never dies a natural death. It dies because we don’t know how to replenish it’s source. It dies of blindness and errors and betrayals. It dies of illness and wounds; it dies of weariness, of witherings, of tarnishings.
Dreams are necessary to life.
It is the function of art to renew our perception. What we are familiar with we cease to see. The writer shakes up the familiar scene, and, as if by magic, we see a new meaning in it.
When one is pretending the entire body revolts.
I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living.
I hate men who are afraid of women’s strength.
Man can never know the loneliness a woman knows. Man lies in the woman’s womb only to gather strength, he nourishes himself from this fusion, and then he rises and goes into the world, into his work, into battle, into art. He is not lonely. He is busy.
The possession of knowledge does not kill the sense of wonder and mystery. There is always more mystery.
Had I not created my whole world, I would certainly have died in other people’s.
When you make a world tolerable for yourself, you make a world tolerable for others.
I will not be just a tourist in the world of images, just watching images passing by which I cannot live in, make love to, possess as permanent sources of joy and ecstasy.
If what Proust says is true, that happiness is the absence of fever, then I will never know happiness. For I am possessed by a fever for knowledge, experience, and creation.
I don’t really want to become normal, average, standard. I want merely to gain in strength, in the courage to live out my life more fully, enjoy more, experience more. I want to develop even more original and more unconventional traits.
When others asked the truth of me, I was convinced it was not the truth they wanted, but an illusion they could bear to live with.
We are going to the moon that is not very far. Man has so much farther to go within himself.
You have a right to experiment with your life. You will make mistakes. And they are right too. No, I think there was too rigid a pattern. You came out of an education and are supposed to know your vocation. Your vocation is fixed, and maybe ten years later you find you are not a teacher anymore or you’re not a painter anymore. It may happen. It has happened. I mean Gauguin decided at a certain point he wasn’t a banker anymore; he was a painter. And so he walked away from banking. I think we have a right to change course. But society is the one that keeps demanding that we fit in and not disturb things. They would like you to fit in right away so that things work now.
There is not one big cosmic meaning for all, there is only the meaning we each give to our life, an individual meaning, an individual plot, like an individual novel, a book for each person.
We are like sculptors, constantly carving out of others the image we long for, need, love or desire, often against reality, against their benefit, and always, in the end, a disappointment, because it does not fit them.
I will always be the virgin-prostitute, the perverse angel, the two-faced sinister and saintly woman.
She lacks confidence, she craves admiration insatiably. She lives on the reflections of herself in the eyes of others. She does not dare to be herself.
We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.
A man fell in love with Jeanne, and she tried to love him. But she complained that he uttered such ordinary words, that he could never say the magic phrase which would open her being.
Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country.
People living deeply have no fear of death.
I am like a snake who has already bitten. I retreat from a direct battle while knowing the slow effect of the poison.
I postpone death by living, by suffering, by error, by risking, by giving, by losing. TC mark

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