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Quotations about Light

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May the blessing of Light be on you, light without and light within... ~Irish blessing

Who is more foolish, the child afraid of the dark or the man afraid of the light?  ~Maurice Freehill

Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.  ~Chinese Proverb

There are two kinds of light - the glow that illumines, and the glare that obscures.  ~James Thurber

In a profound sense every man has two halves to his being; he is not one person so much as two persons trying to act in unison.  I believe that in the heart of each human being there is something which I can only describe as a "child of darkness" who is equal and complementary to the more obvious "child of light."  ~Laurens van der Post

Moonlight is sculpture.  ~Nathaniel Hawthorne

Firelight will not let you read fine stories but it's warm and you won't see the dust on the floor.  ~Irish Proverb

We cannot hold a torch to light another's path without brightening our own.  ~Ben Sweetland

Light gives of itself freely, filling all available space.  It does not seek anything in return; it asks not whether you are friend or foe.  It gives of itself and is not thereby diminished.  ~Michael Strassfeld

Lethargics are to be laid in the light, and exposed to the rays of the sun for the disease is gloom.  ~Aretaeus

Live in rooms full of light.  ~Cornelius Celsus

We are each gifted in a unique and important way. It is our privilege and our adventure to discover our own special light.  ~Evelyn Dunbar

You can't have a light without a dark to stick it in.  ~Arlo Guthrie

There are two ways of spreading light; to be
The candle or the mirror that reflects it.
~Edith Wharton, "Vesalius in Zante (1564)," Artemis to Actæon and Other Verse, 1909

People are like stained-glass windows.  They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in their true beauty is revealed only if there is light from within.  ~Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you.  ~Maori Proverb

The hero is the one who kindles a great light in the world, who sets up blazing torches in the dark streets of life for men to see by.  The saint is the man who walks through the dark paths of the world, himself a light.  ~Felix Adler

Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine.  ~Anthony J. D'Angelo

A sensible man will remember that the eyes may be confused in two ways - by a change from light to darkness or from darkness to light; and he will recognize that the same thing happens to the soul.  ~Plato

When you possess light within, you see it externally.  ~Anaïs Nin

You can owe nothing, if you give back its light to the sun.  ~Antonio Porchia

Dare to reach out your hand into the darkness, to pull another hand into the light.  ~Norman B. Rice

How glorious a greeting the sun gives the mountains! ~John Muir, The Mountains of California

The windows of my soul I throw
Wide open to the sun.
~John Greenleaf Whittier

The cradle rocks above an abyss, and common sense tells us that our existence is but a brief crack of light between two eternities of darkness.  ~Vladimir Nabokov

Let us dance in the sun, wearing wild flowers in our hair...  ~Susan Polis Shutz

From within or from behind, a light shines through us upon things, and makes us aware that we are nothing, but the light is all.  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ever since we crawled out of that primordial slime, that's been our unifying cry, "More light."  Sunlight.  Torchlight.  Candlelight.  Neon, incandescent lights that banish the darkness from our caves to illuminate our roads, the insides of our refrigerators.  Big floods for the night games at Soldier's Field.  Little tiny flashlights for those books we read under the covers when we're supposed to be asleep.  Light is more than watts and footcandles.  Light is metaphor.  Light is knowledge, light is life, light is light.  ~Diane Frolov and Andrew Schneider

In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary.  ~Aaron Rose

Inside my empty bottle
I was constructing a lighthouse
While all the others
Were making ships.
~Charles Simic, "Solving the Riddle," Return to a Place Lit by a Glass of Milk, 1974

A smile is the light in the window of your face that tells people you're at home.  ~Author Unknown

His high endeavors are an inward light
That makes the path before him always bright.
~William Wordsworth

They may as well have called the sun a ball of flaming joy. ~Terri Guillemets

Light, when suddenly let in, dazzles and hurts and almost blinds us: but this soon passes away, and it seems to become the only element we can exist in. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827

Light is good from whatever lamp it shines.  ~Author Unknown

Light can be gentle, dangerous, dreamlike, bare, living, dead, misty, clear, hot, dark, violet, springlike, falling, straight, sensual, limited, poisonous, calm and soft.  ~Sven Nykvist

Someday perhaps the inner light will shine forth from us, and then we'll need no other light.  ~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

What is to give light must endure burning.  ~Viktor Frankl

Look at the light — the way it slants from the trees. You only see light as sharp as that in winter. ~Hayes Davenport and Alena Smith, "There's a certain Slant of light," Dickinson, 2019  [S1, E8, Ben Newton to Emily —tg]

A sensitive plant in a garden grew,
And the young winds fed it with silver dew,
And it opened its fan-like leaves to the light,
and closed them beneath the kisses of night.
~Percy Bysshe Shelley, "The Sensitive Plant," 1820

Love is not consolation.  It is light.  ~Friedrich Nietzsche

He had enjoyed the refreshing luxury of a bath in his dressing-room, and was now sitting, after a late breakfast, in the open gallery, flanking the dining-room and the lower morning-rooms, and looking on the garden. The long outer blinds had been drawn down between the columns to exclude the powerful sunbeams; but the effect of the light, although subdued, was glowing; and, to Lilian's eyes, her husband was glorified by an atmosphere of poetic brightness. ~J. Palgrave Simpson, For Ever and Never, 1884

In faith there is enough light for those who want to believe and enough shadows to blind those who don't.  ~Blaise Pascal

For light I go directly to the Source of light, not to any of the reflections.  ~Peace Pilgrim

A man should learn to detect and watch that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within.  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

There is a muscular energy in sunlight corresponding to the spiritual energy of wind.  ~Annie Dillard

Joy requires one to be awake,
Adjusting the heart's ambience to bright.
Some prefer the dark, as is their right,
On grounds of agony, and to forsake
Not only bliss, but all that's blessed by light.
~Nicholas Gordon,

Where there is sunshine the doctor starves.  ~Flemish Proverb

Sun spreads through the treetops like an epidemic. ~Dave Bonta, from The Morning Porch,

Light comes to us unexpectedly and obliquely.  Perhaps it amuses the gods to try us.  They want to see whether we are asleep.  ~H.M. Tomlinson

Sunshine is my quest.  ~Winston Churchill

Light, God's eldest daughter...  ~Thomas Fuller

Alas! must it ever be so?
Do we stand in our own light, wherever we go,
And fight our own shadows forever?
~Edward Robert Bulwer Lytton

We all walk in the dark and each of us must learn to turn on his or her own light.  ~Earl Nightingale

Into my heart's night
Along a narrow way
I groped; and lo! the light,
An infinite land of day.

This life is a shadowy thing, lad. We live in a crowded space of lights and shadows... ~James Michael Pratt, The Lighthouse Keeper, 2000

Sometimes just looking up and seeing the light is enough. ~Terri Guillemets

Begin challenging your own assumptions. Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in awhile, or the light won't come in. ~Alan Alda

Keep your flame lit, and you will never feel darkness. ~J. Parker

Perhaps some will say: where sunlight is wanting, there is a substitute for it in artificial light. Extraordinary inventions have indeed been made in this respect. In my boyhood I have seen in some households how late in the evening people lighted chips of wood at their stove and actually spun by such a wretched light. I saw also how they stuck on a holder well dried wood-shavings, which, on being lit at the top, burnt slowly on until they were entirely consumed. These people were content with the miserable light and spun away till 9 o'clock in the evening. Later on linseed-oil and tallow-candles came into general use as material for lighting family dwellings and work-shops. In course of time various burning and lighting materials were discovered and invented... the new materials giving a much brighter light. But whether the change has not injured the human frame and in particular the organs of sight... that is another question which, I fear, must be answered in the affirmative. ~Sebastian Kneipp, Thus Shalt Thou Live: Hints and Advice for the Healthy and the Sick on a Simple and Rational Mode of Life and a Natural Method of Cure, 1889, translated from the 19th German edition

What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight.  ~Joseph Joubert

The sun shines and warms and lights us and we have no curiosity to know why this is so; but we ask the reason of all evil, of pain, and hunger, and mosquitoes and silly people.  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Your path is illuminated by the light
Yet darkness lets the stars shine bright.
~J.L.W. Brooks

There they stand, the innumerable stars, shining in order like a living hymn, written in light.  ~N.P. Willis

No matter how fast light travels it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it.  ~Terry Pratchett

Some things in our lives are as constant as the sun and others as fleeting as a shooting star. But we are thankful for all light that brightens our paths. ~Terri Guillemets

Auld Daddy Darkness...
See him in the corners hidin' frae the licht,
See him at the window gloomin' at the nicht...
~James Ferguson

The sun works in my veins like wine, like wine! ~Amy Levy, "A Minor Poet," c.1884

Sunshine on my shoulders makes me happy.  ~John Denver, "Sunshine on My Shoulders"

Nothing in the universe can travel at the speed of light, they say, forgetful of the shadow's speed.  ~Howard Nemerov

We must therefore do all we can to live in a clear atmosphere and sunlight, eye and body will then be in a far better condition. But if people, especially town's people, will occupy rooms and workshops into which neither the rays of the sun nor even broad daylight can penetrate, how can they be expected to remain healthy and strong?... Man, it is true, can get accustomed to many things, especially to the requirements of fashion.... And yet... Will they not weaken their eyesight and even their bodies by working most of their time in such a self-procured twilight?... He who lives and moves in full daylight and brilliant sunshine will possess the soundest eye and the soundest body as far as light can influence them. ~Sebastian Kneipp, Thus Shalt Thou Live: Hints and Advice for the Healthy and the Sick on a Simple and Rational Mode of Life and a Natural Method of Cure, 1889, translated from the 19th German edition

This evening, I sat by an open window
and read till the light was gone and the book
was no more than a part of the darkness....
~Ted Kooser, from "A Happy Birthday"

I always know I'm talking to a gardener or a photographer if at any given time, they know where the light is. ~Betsy Cañas Garmon,

Glitter needs light to shine. We all do. ~Terri Guillemets

Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark. ~Rabindranath Tagore

Where the sun does not go, there goes the doctor.... Watch for the sun, for life and health dwell in the sun's beams; and when it is shining, open every window in the house until it goes down again. ~"Take Sun Baths," Food, Home and Garden, November 1897, published by the Vegetarian Society of America (Philadelphia)

When my heart is heavy, the sun helps make it light. ~Terri Guillemets

The pursuit of perfection, then, is the pursuit of sweetness and light. ~Matthew Arnold

The black moment is the moment when the real message of transformation is going to come.  At the darkest moment comes the light.  ~Joseph Campbell

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering.
There is a crack in everything,
That's how the light gets in.
~Leonard Cohen

Morning golden hour is the warm glow of the day's potential
Evening golden hour is nature's afterglow to a day well spent
~Terri Guillemets

Now, if light exercises such a power over other created beings, why should it not also have a distinct influence on the human body and mind?... It may rightly be asserted that a clear atmosphere and sunlight are most powerful in producing a genial disposition in man and therefore have a vital influence on mind and body. ~Sebastian Kneipp, Thus Shalt Thou Live: Hints and Advice for the Healthy and the Sick on a Simple and Rational Mode of Life and a Natural Method of Cure, 1889, translated from the 19th German edition

Is there anything more loyal than the sun? ~Mary Oliver

Now is the flickering flame of a single candle
Forever—the endless light of a galaxy of stars.
~Terri Guillemets

Nothing travels faster than light, with the possible exception of bad news, which follows its own rules.  ~Douglas Adams

It's a cruel season that makes you get ready for bed while it's light out. ~Bill Watterson

What more pleasant sensation
      than sunshine on skin,
Spirit and flesh drinking in
      nature's pure light.
~Terri Guillemets

Never fear shadows. They simply mean there's a light shining somewhere nearby. ~Ruth E. Renkel

He that has light within his own clear breast
May sit i' the centre, and enjoy bright day:
But he that hides a dark soul and foul thoughts
Benighted walks under the mid-day sun;
Himself his own dungeon.
~John Milton

Sunshine is Nature's hug and spirit breath to the earth. ~Terri Guillemets

God presents Himself in the light; He also conceals Himself by the light—just as we present ourselves in our garments and conceal ourselves by our garments. ~John Pulsford

The flowers that sleep by night, opened their gentle eyes and turned them to the day.  The light, creation's mind, was everywhere, and all things owned its power.  ~Charles Dickens, The Old Curiosity Shop

If there is one spot of sun spilling onto the floor, a cat will find it and soak it up.  ~Jean Asper McIntosh

I'm not a doctor and I don't know the technical terminology, but I do know that sunshine activates our happiness glands. ~Terri Guillemets

I will love the light for it shows me the way.  Yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars.  ~Og Mandino

golden hour of magical light
the sky alive, born of the sun
ephemeral link to the moment
~Terri Guillemets, "Golden Hour," 2019, blackout poetry created from T. Greenwood, The Golden Hour, 2017, pages 2–3

Though my soul may set in darkness,
It will rise in perfect light,
I have loved the stars too fondly
To be fearful of the night.
~Sarah Williams

The stars are the street lights of eternity.  ~Author Unknown

Beauty is not in the face; beauty is a light in the heart.  ~Kahlil Gibran

Wine is sunlight, held together by water.  ~Galileo

The sun seems fascinated to get closer to this paradise landscape, and keeps dropping half inch by half inch in the west. Tenderly he flies to his lover, the Ocean, who twists in delight with his imminent arrival. "Patience, my love," the Sun whispers in long golden rays. "Soon I am yours." ~Edmond Manning, King Perry

Your life is something opaque, not transparent, as long as you look at it in an ordinary human way.  But if you hold it up against the light of God's goodness, it shines and turns transparent, radiant and bright.  And then you ask yourself in amazement:  Is this really my own life I see before me?  ~Albert Schweitzer

An age is called "dark," not because the light fails to shine but because people refuse to see it.  ~James Michener

For sleep, one needs endless depths of blackness to sink into; daylight is too shallow, it will not cover one. ~Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Sadness flies on the wings of the morning and out of the heart of darkness comes the light. ~Jean Giraudoux

How is one to live a moral and compassionate existence when one finds darkness not only in one's culture but within oneself? There are simply no answers to some of the great pressing questions. You continue to live them out, making your life a worthy expression of leaning into the light. ~Barry Lopez, Arctic Dreams

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Last saved 2021 Jan 02 Sat 10:56 PST

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