Tupac Quotes

115+ Tupac Quotes to Inspire Resilience, Growth, and Strength

The world-renowned artist, Tupac Shakur was born on June 16th, 1971 in East Harlem, New York. Both, Tupac‘s mother and father were Black Panther members, raising Tupac to challenge racist stereotypes and take a stand against blatant racism and police brutality. At the age of 12, he discovered his love for the arts when he performed in A Raisin in the Sun with the 127th Street Ensemble. Later in his years, he moved to Baltimore, Maryland with his mother Afeni where he entered the prestigious Baltimore School for the Arts. It was at this school that he found his love for writing raps and poetry while continuing his interest in entertainment, performing in various Shakespearian plays, and a production of The Nutcracker.

In June of 1988, Shakur and his family moved to Marin, California where Tupac joined the Ensemble Theater Company. By 1991 he released his first hit single “Same Song”, following with his first solo album 2Pacalypse later in the year. Also in 1991, Shakur starred in his first movie Sons of the P, beginning his journey in the film industry. 1993 came with conflict and success for Shakur as he formed the group Thug Life with a few friends and his stepbrother Mopreme Shakur, but found trouble with the law later in the year. In October of 1993, Tupac shot two off-duty police officers that he claimed were harassing a black motorist. The case was dropped after it was released that the officers were drunk but more conflict with the law followed in 1994 when Tupac was convicted of assaulting a former female employer. The day before his guilty verdict, Tupac was shot 5 times and had to receive his sentencing in a wheelchair. That year also brought joy for Shakur as he and his group Thug Life released their only album, Thug Life Vol. 1.

At the young age of 25, Tupac was wounded in a drive-by shooting and died six days later from his injuries on September 13th, 1996. Despite life’s challenges and his short professional career, he became the best-selling hip-hop artist worldwide with over 75 million albums sold while starring in 9 movies and being nominated for 6 Grammies. Tupac’s legacy spread wide and far due to his activism, lyric raps, and determination. Discover the best Tupac Shakur quotes from his discography, poetry, and life below and find a Tupac lyric or inspirational quote to share with those you love.

Tupac Quotes on Love, Compassion, and God

“I am a hard person to love but when I love, I love really hard.”

“I’m not trying to make people think I’m in here faking it, but my whole life is going to be about saving somebody.”

“You can never “just be friends” with someone you fall in love with.”

“Fear is stronger than love, remember that. Fear is stronger than love. All that love I gave didn’t mean nothing when it came to fear.”

“Time to heal our women, be real to our women.”

“I have no fear. I have no mothafuckin’ fear. I have only ambition. I want mine, and I will do anything to feed and protect my family.”

“Ain’t a woman alive that could take my mama’s place.”

“A woman brought you into this world, so you have no right to disrespect one.”

“We all gonna die, we bleed from similar veins.”

“Let the Lord judge the criminals.”

“If God wanted me to be quiet he would’ve never showed me what he does.”

“With all my fans I got a family again.”

“I’ve been shot five times but I’m still breathing, living proof there a God if you need a reason.”

“If you let a person talk long enough you’ll hear their true intentions! Listen twice, speak once.”

“We can never go nowhere unless we share with each other.”

“Follow your heart, but take your brain with you.”

“It takes skill to be real. Time to heal each other.”

“Out of anger comes controversy, out of controversy comes conversation, out of conversation comes action.”

“We was young and we was dumb, but we had heart.”

“Watch for phonies, keep your enemies close, watch your homies.”

“Learn to see me as a brother instead of two distant strangers.”

Tupac Quotes on Character, Resilience, and Growth

“Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside while still alive. Never surrender.”

“During your life, never stop dreaming. No one can take away your dreams.”

“All I’m trying to do is survive and make good out of the dirty, nasty, unbelievable lifestyle that they gave me.”

“Until it happened, I really did believe that no Black person would ever shoot me. I believed that I didn’t have to fear my own community, you know, I was like, I represent them. I’m their ambassador to the world, they will never do me wrong.”

“Sometimes I sit and look at life from a different angle.”

“Sometimes life can be a heavy load.”

“Sometimes when I’m alone / I Cry, / Cause I am on my own. / The tears I cry are bitter and warm. / They flow with life but take no form / I Cry because my heart is torn. / I find it difficult to carry on. / If I had an ear to confide in, / I would cry among my treasured friend, / but who do you know that stops that long, / to help another carry-on. / The world moves fast and it would rather pass by. / Then to stop and see what makes one cry, / so painful and sad. / And sometimes… / I Cry / and no one cares about why.” -“I Cry”, a poem by Tupac Shakur

“This fast life soon shatters, cause after all the lights and screams, nothing but my dreams matter.”

“Forgive but don’t forget, girl keep your head up. And when he tells you you ain’t nothing, don’t believe him. And if he can’t learn to love you, you should leave him.”

“You see you wouldn’t ask why the rose that grew from the concrete had damaged petals. On the contrary, we would all celebrate its tenacity. We would all love its will to reach the sun. Well, we are the rose – this is the concrete – and these are my damaged petals. Don’t ask me why, thank God nigga, ask me how!”

“My mother had a really bad childhood, and my father had a bad childhood, and I had a bad childhood, but I love my childhood, even though it was bad, I love it. I feel like it’s taught me so much. And I feel like nothing can faze me, you know nothing in this world, nothing can surprise me, it might set me back, but only momentarily, only to spring back.”

“During your life, never stop dreaming. No one can take away your dreams.”

“Many dreams are what we had and plenty wishes.”

“Tomorrow I wake with second wind and strong because of pride. I know I fought with all my heart to keep the dream alive.”

“It seems the rain’ll never let up / I try to keep my head up and still keep from gettin’ wet up.”

“I don’t have no fear of death. My only fear is coming back reincarnated.”

“I feel like role models today are not meant to be put on a pedestal. But more like angels with broken wings.”

“I set goals, take control, drink out my own bottle. I make mistakes but learn from everyone. And when it’s said and done. I bet this brother be a better one. If I upset you don’t stress. Never forget, that God isn’t finished with me yet.”

“In my death, people will understand what I was talking about.”

“Behind every sweet smile, there is a bitter sadness that no one can see and feel.”

“Everybody’s at war with different things. I’m at war with my own heart sometimes.”

“If you can make it through the night, there’s a brighter day.”

“I know it seems hard sometimes but remember one thing. Through every dark night, there’s a bright day after that. So no matter how hard it get, stick your chest out, keep ya head up…. and handle it.”

“I’d rather die like a man than live like a coward.”

“Imperfection is inherited, therefore we all sin, but fighting the war of sin is the greatest war of all because we all die in the end, no matter how hard we fight.”

“As wars come and go, my soldier stays eternal.”

“There’s gonna be some stuff you gonna see that’s gonna make it hard to smile in the future, but through whatever you see, through all the rain and the pain you gotta keep your sense of humor. You gotta be able to smile through all this bullshit…remember that.”

“Don’t leave this world without giving it your all.”

“I am not a perfectionist, but still I seek perfection. I am not a great romantic, but yet I yearn for affection.”

“I hate the man in the mirror ’cause his reflection makes the pain turn realer.”

“Somebody help me, tell me where to go from here cause even thugs cry, but do the Lord care?”

“My mama always used to tell me: ‘if you can’t find somethin’ to live for, you best find somethin’ to die for.’”

“Though things change, the future’s still inside me.”

“It seems like every time you come up something happens to bring you back down.”

“The seed must grow regardless of the fact that it’s planted in stone.”

“Don’t live to fight, fight to live.”

“I want to grow. I want to be better. You grow. We all grow. We’re made to grow. You either evolve or you disappear.”

“You can spend minutes, hours, days, weeks, or months over-analyzing a situation; trying to put the pieces together, justifying what could’ve, would’ve happened…or you can just leave the pieces on the floor and move the f*** on.”

“Never surrender, it’s all about the faith you got; don’t ever stop, just push it ‘till you hit the top and if you drop, at least you know you gave your all to be true to you, that way you can never fail.”

“Even the genius asks questions.”

“Just cause you live in the ghetto doesn’t mean you can’t grow.”

“I don’t want it if it’s that easy.”

“Don’t believe everything you hear. Real eyes, realize, real lies.”

“I think being humble is sexy.”

“The realest people don’t have a lot of friends.”

“Recollect your thoughts, don’t get caught up in the mix.”

“You gotta learn to hold your own.”

“In my mind, I’ll be thinking is this true, will I fail? Am I supposed to fail?  Should I just stop trying and give up?  But then, that’s exactly what they’re waiting for me to do.”

Tupac Quotes About His Life, Music, and Inspiration

“Everything in life is not all beautiful, not all fun. There is lots of killing and drugs. To me, a perfect album talks about the hard stuff and the fun and caring stuff.”

“No matter what these people say about me, my music doesn’t glorify any image. My music is spiritual when you listen to it. It’s all about emotion, I tell my innermost, darkest secrets.”

“I’m doing this for the kid who truly leads a ‘thug life’ and thinks it’s hopeless.”

“My life was lived through falling rain, so call on me if there be pain.”

“I have not brought violence to you. I have not brought ‘thug life’ to America. I didn’t create ‘thug life;’ I diagnosed it.”

“What I learned in jail is that I can’t change. I can’t live a different lifestyle – this is it. This is the life that they gave and this is the life that I made.”

“Life is a wheel of fortune and it’s my turn to spin it.”

“It’s the game of life. Do I win or do I lose? One day they’re gonna shut the game down. I gotta have as much fun and go around the board as many times as I can before it’s my turn to leave.”

“That which does not kill me can only make me stronger. I don’t see why everybody feel as though that they gotta tell me how to live my life.”

“No one knows my struggle, they only see the trouble. Not knowing how hard it is to carry on when no one loves you.”

“Hip Hop when it started it was supposed to be this new thing that had no boundaries and was so different to everyday music. Now it seems like I was starting to get caught up in the mode of what made hip hop come about. As long as the music has the true to the heart soul it can be hip hop. As long it has soul to it, hip hop can live on.”

“Reality is wrong. Dreams are for real.”

“If we’re all saying that rap is an art form then we gotta be more responsible for our lyrics. If you see everybody dying because of what you’re saying, it don’t matter that you didn’t make them die, it just matters that you didn’t save them.”

“I said, I’m gonna write a song about the women like my mom, women like my sister, who I think represent the strong black women, and I did that. Now I’mma write about the women I see every day and that was ‘[I] Get Around.’ If I just write songs like ‘Keep Ya Head Up’ it would make me seem more than what I am, but I’m just a normal man.”

“The only thing that can kill me is death, that’s the only thing that can ever stop me, is death, and even then my music will live forever.”

“When you do rap albums, you got to train yourself. You got to constantly be in character.”

“The only thing that comes to a sleeping man is dreams.”

“I’m a reflection of the community.”

“My inspiration for writing music is like Don McLean did when he did “American Pie” or “Vincent”. Lorraine Hansberry with “A Raisin in the Sun”. Like Shakespeare when he does his thing, like deep stories, raw human needs. I’m trying to think of a good analogy. It’s like, you’ve got the Vietnam War, and because you had reporters showing us pictures of the war at home, that’s what made the war end, or that shit would have lasted longer. If no one knew what was going on we would have thought they were just dying valiantly in some beautiful way. But because we saw the horror, that’s what made us stop the war. So I thought, that’s what I’m going to do as an artist, as a rapper. I’m gonna show the most graphic details of what I see in my community and hopefully, they’ll stop it quick.”

“I’m not sayin’ I’m gonna rule the world, or that I’m gonna change the world, but I guarantee that I will spark the brain that will change the world.”

“I don’t see myself being special; I just see myself having more responsibilities than the next man. People look to me to do things for them, to have answers.”

“I’m going to show people my true intentions, and my true heart. I’m going to show them the man that my mother raised. I’m going to make them all proud.”

“I think I’m a natural-born leader. I know how to bow down to authority if it’s authority that I respect.”

“I’ll probably be punished for hard living.”

“I believe that everything that you do bad comes back to you. So everything that I do that’s bad, I’m going to suffer from it. But in my mind, I believe what I’m doing is right. So I feel like I’m going to heaven.”

“I don’t want to be a role model. I just want to be someone who says, this is who I am, this is what I do, I say what’s on my mind.”

“You just can’t be calling us fakers and pretenders and non-creative and say we can’t freestyle.”

“If you could walk a mile in my shoes you’d be crazy too.”

“I didn’t choose the thug life, the thug life chose me.”

“I’m not perfect. But I’ll always be real.”

“I’m 100 percent original, and that’s what got me here. My rap music is more understandable, slower. It tells a story. You can write a book on each of my thoughts.”

“Don’t think I don’t see you haters, I know y’all in disguise.”

“I live in hell. I have no friends. I never sleep. I can never close my eyes. Can you imagine what it’s like to be who I am?”

“To all the seeds that follow me, protect your essence. Born with less, but you still precious.”

“Why am I fighting to live, if I am just living to fight. Why am I trying to see, when there ain’t nothing in sight. Why am I trying to give, when no one gives me a try. Why am I dying to live, if I am just living to die?”

“People die but legends live forever.”

Tupac Quotes on Violence, Racism, and Corruption

“They have money for war but can’t feed the poor.”

“I see the ground is the symbol for the poor people; the poor people is gonna open up this whole world and swallow up the rich people, ’cause the rich people gonna be so fat, they gonna be so appetizing, you know what I’m saying, wealthy, appetizing. The poor gonna be so poor and hungry, you know what I’m saying? It’s gonna be like — there might be some cannibalism out this mother. They might eat the rich.”

“The same crime element that white people are scared of, black people are scared of. While they waiting for legislation to pass, we next door to the killer. All them killers they let out, they’re in that building. Just because we black, we get along with the killers? What is that?”

“I know what good morals are, but you’re supposed to disregard good morals when you’re living in a crazy, bad world. If you’re in hell, how can you live like an angel? You’re surrounded by devils, trying to be an angel? That’s like suicide.”

“It’s a struggle for every young Black man. You know how it is, only God can judge us.”

“I am society’s child. This is how they made me and now I’m sayin’ what’s on my mind and they don’t want that. This is what you made me, America.”

“No matter who committed the crime, they all yell at me. And the media is greedier than most. You could sell ‘em your soul and they’ll be on ya till a nigga’s a ghost.”

“Is it a crime to fight for what is mine?”

“What people do for the struggle of power is madness.”

“If they take half the buildings that they use to praise God and give it to the motherfuckers who need God we’d be ‘aight.”

“One thing we all adore, something worth dying for, nothing but pain, stuck in this game, searchin’ for fortune and fame.”

“Do everything you can to make it around the system, over the system, or out the system.”

Tupac’s Albums for Further Listening

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