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 :: 1911-, Rumanian-born French Philosopher

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A civilization is destroyed only when its gods are destroyed.
~ E. M. Cioran - [God]

 

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A decadent civilization compromises with its disease, cherishes the virus infecting it, loses its self-respect.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Disease]

 

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A sudden silence in the middle of a conversation suddenly brings us back to essentials: it reveals how dearly we must pay for the invention of speech.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Conversation]

 

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Alone, even doing nothing, you do not waste your time. You do, almost always, in company. No encounter with yourself can be altogether sterile: Something necessarily emerges, even if only the hope of some day meeting yourself again.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Solitude]

 

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Consciousness is much more than the thorn, it is the dagger in the flesh.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Consciousness]

 

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Criticism is a misconception: we must read not to understand others but to understand ourselves.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Critics and Criticism]

 

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Does our ferocity not derive from the fact that our instincts are all too interested in other people? If we attended more to ourselves and became the center, the object of our murderous inclinations, the sum of our intolerances would diminish.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Aggression]

 

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Every thought derives from a thwarted sensation.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Frustration]

 

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Fear can supplant our real problems only to the extent --unwilling either to assimilate or to exhaust it --we perpetuate it within ourselves like a temptation and enthrone it at the very heart of our solitude.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Fear]

 

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God: a disease we imagine we are cured of because no one dies of it nowadays.
~ E. M. Cioran - [God]

 

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Great persecutors are recruited among martyrs whose heads haven't been cut off.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Martyrdom]

 

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If we could see ourselves as others see us, we would vanish on the spot.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Self-image]

 

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Impossible to spend sleepless nights and accomplish anything: if, in my youth, my parents had not financed my insomnias, I should surely have killed myself.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Insomnia]

 

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It is not worth the bother of killing yourself, since you always kill yourself too late.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Suicide]

 

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Man must vanquish himself, must do himself violence, in order to perform the slightest action untainted by evil.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Evil]

 

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Much more than our other needs and endeavors, it is sexuality that puts us on an even footing with our kind: the more we practice it, the more we become like everyone else: it is in the performance of a reputedly bestial function that we prove our status as citizens: nothing is more public than the sexual act.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Sex]

 

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Music is the refuge of souls ulcerated by happiness.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Music]

 

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Negation is the mind's first freedom, yet a negative habit is fruitful only so long as we exert ourselves to overcome it, adapt it to our needs; once acquired it can imprison us.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Rejection]

 

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No human beings more dangerous than those who have suffered for a belief: the great persecutors are recruited from the martyrs not quite beheaded. Far from diminishing the appetite for power, suffering exasperates it.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Martyrdom]

 

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No one can keep his grieves in their prime; they use themselves up.
~ E. M. Cioran - [Grief]

 

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