French philosopher, author and journalist, Albert Camus is widely known for promoting the concept of “absurdism” — the human conflict between seeking value and meaning in life and our inability to actually find them. He best presented the philosophy in his major works L’Étranger (The Stranger) and Le Mythe de Sisyphe (The Myth of Sisyphus).
Camus was born in an impoverished family. After his father got killed in World War I, he moved with his mother and brother in a two-room apartment in the working-class district of Belcourt. The three of them lived together with his grandmother and a paralyzed uncle. Illiterate and partially deaf, Camus’ mother worked as a house-keeper to support the family.
An excellent student, Camus was also into sports. Sadly, he had to give up his football ambitions as at the age of 17 the boy was inflicted with tuberculosis. Later in life, the disease kept Camus from fulfilling another dream — becoming a teacher.
Writing remained his only consolation, so he used his skills to emerge from a troubled past to receiving the Nobel Prize for Literature.
Here are 21 Albert Camus quotes to calm your mind from overthinking everything and just start living.
When you have once seen the glow of happiness on the face of a beloved person, you know that a man can have no vocation but to awaken that light on the faces surrounding him.
Always go too far, because that’s where you’ll find the truth.
No matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back.
People hasten to judge in order not to be judged themselves.
Life can be magnificent and overwhelming – that is the whole tragedy. Without beauty, love, or danger it would almost be easy to live.
You will never be happy if you continue to search for what happiness consists of. You will never live if you are looking for the meaning of life.
When the soul suffers too much, it develops a taste for misfortune.
Real generosity towards the future lies in giving all to the present.
The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.
It is the job of thinking people not to be on the side of the executioners.
To be happy, we must not be too concerned with others.
In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.
Man is the only creature who refuses to be what he is.
We all carry within us places of exile, our crimes, our ravages. Our task is not to unleash them on the world; it is to transform them in ourselves and others.
Seeking what is true is not seeking what is desirable.
The evil that is in the world almost always comes from ignorance, and good intentions may do as much harm as malevolence if they lack understanding.
Blessed are the hearts that can bend; they shall never be broken.
Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal.
I know that man is capable of great deeds. But if he isn’t capable of great emotion, well, he leaves me cold.
There is no sun without shadow, and it is essential to know the night.
The need to be right – the sign of a vulgar mind.