The Quote Garden ™
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Quotations about Living in the Present
With the past, I have nothing to do; nor with the future. I live now. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
Try your very best to live in the present moment where your heart beats are. ~Bernard Basset, We Neurotics: A Handbook for the Half-Mad, 1962
We think we've had our chance — or our chance is yet to come. It is a rare ability to see one's chance in progress. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com, 2019
I do not ask for faith in a hereafter, but let me believe in today, and no hereafter can present that I shall not be well prepared. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Life, 1912
One problem with gazing too frequently into the past is that we may turn around to find the future has run out on us. ~Michael Cibenko
There is no distance on this earth as far away as yesterday. ~Robert Nathan, So Love Returns
You can clutch the past so tightly to your chest that it leaves your arms too full to embrace the present. ~Jan Glidewell
Would you keep a chive on your tooth just because you enjoyed last night's potato? ~From the television show Boston Common
I have memories — but only a fool stores his past in the future. ~David Gerrold
I can't wait all my life
On a street of broken dreams.
~Journey, "It Could Have Been You"
No man is rich enough to buy back his past. ~Oscar Wilde
It's but little good you'll do a-watering the last year's crop. ~George Eliot, Adam Bede (Mrs. Poyser)
The first recipe for happiness is: Avoid too lengthy meditation on the past. ~André Maurois
We seem to be going through a period of nostalgia, and everyone seems to think yesterday was better than today. I don't think it was, and I would advise you not to wait ten years before admitting today was great. If you're hung up on nostalgia, pretend today is yesterday and just go out and have one hell of a time. ~Art Buchwald
If you are still talking about what you did yesterday, you haven't done much today. ~Author Unknown
Don't let yesterday use up too much of today. ~Cherokee Indian Proverb
The past is a good place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there. ~Author Unknown
When yesterday is dead, I shall bury it. My onward march is over new-made graves. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Life, 1912
Don't spend too much of your life avoiding the sharp edges of shattered dreams. ~Terri Guillemets
Living the past is a dull and lonely business; looking back strains the neck muscles, causing you to bump into people not going your way. ~Edna Ferber
I tell you the past is a bucket of ashes. ~Carl Sandburg, "Prairie," Complete Poems, 1950
In the carriages of the past you can't go anywhere. ~Maxim Gorky
The past is never there when you try to go back. It exists, but only in memory. To pretend otherwise is to invite a mess. ~Chris Cobbs
Waste not fresh tears over old griefs. ~Euripides, Alexander
The past is a guidepost, not a hitching post. ~L. Thomas Holdcroft
We cannot carry our father's corpse with us everywhere we go. ~Guillaume Apollinaire, The Cubist Painters, 1913
Keep not alive the woes of yesterday,
But bury them deep down within your soul;
And, then, erect a monument of love!
And sadness from your consciousness will roll.
~Gertrude Tooley Buckingham, "Say Good-Bye" (1940s)
The Past is the textbook of tyrants; the Future the Bible of the Free. Those who are solely governed by the Past stand like Lot's wife, crystallized in the act of looking backward, and forever incapable of looking before. ~Herman Melville, White Jacket
No yesterdays are ever wasted for those who give themselves to today. ~Brendan Francis
I need neither future nor past, but to learn to take today not too fast. ~Jeb Dickerson, @JebDickerson
People are always asking about the good old days. I say, why don't you say the good now days? ~Robert M. Young
The memories you have are just recordings of things past, not chains to bind you. ~Mike Dolan, @HawaiianLife
Don't let the past steal your present. ~Terri Guillemets
Having spent the better part of my life trying either to relive the past or experience the future before it arrives, I have come to believe that in between these two extremes is peace. ~Author Unknown
"Old times" never come back and I suppose it's just as well. What comes back is a new morning every day in the year, and that's better. ~George E. Woodberry
Opportunities fly by while we sit regretting the chances we have lost, and the happiness that comes to us we heed not, because of the happiness that is gone. ~Jerome K. Jerome, The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow, 1889
Many appreciate the greatness of the past; few, the greatness of the present. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor
When one door closes another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us. ~Alexander Graham Bell
You have to wake up a virgin each morning. ~Jean-Louis Barrault
We can easily manage if we will only take, each day, the burden appointed to it. But the load will be too heavy for us if we carry yesterday's burden over again today, and then add the burden of the morrow before we are required to bear it. ~John Newton
If you have one eye on yesterday, and one eye on tomorrow, you're going to be cockeyed today. ~Author Unknown
Stay on top of your past so you can have a better view of your future. ~Dodinsky
We cannot overstate our debt to the Past, but the moment has the supreme claim. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Quotation and Originality," Letters and Social Aims, 1876
Nothing is worth more than this day. ~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
I felt strangely anxious that day, in a very human way. People are always worried about what's happening next. They often find it difficult to stand still, to occupy the now without worrying about the future. People are not generally satisfied with what they have; they are very concerned with what they are going to have. ~Garth Stein, The Art of Racing in the Rain, 2008
Time is plenty —
~Terri Guillemets, "Now is enough," 2018, blackout poetry created from Lemony Snicket, The Grim Grotto, 2004, page 199
If you're always racing to the next moment, what happens to the one you're in? ~Author Unknown
Today is the greatest
Day I've ever known
Can't live for tomorrow,
Tomorrow's much too long....
~Billy Corgan, "Today," Siamese Dream (Smashing Pumpkins), 1993
The living moment is everything. ~D.H. Lawrence
Nothing is more precious than being in the present moment. Fully alive, fully aware. ~Thích Nhất Hạnh
We are not dead yet; we are here, and it is now. ~H.L. Mencken (1880–1956), "Joseph Conrad," A Book of Prefaces, 1917 [Ever wonder about the "Opus 13" on A Book of Prefaces? "Under my name on the title page appeared 'Opus 13,' but this was mere blague, for a list of my books facing the title showed only nine titles, and all reference to opus numbers was omitted with the third edition, in August 1920." ~H.L. Mencken, My Life as Author and Editor, edited by Jonathan Yardley, 1992 —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, not to worry about the future, or not to anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly. ~Buddha
Why not just live in the moment, especially if it has a good beat? ~Goldie Hawn
Take your eyes off what you lost. ~Daniel, @blindedpoet
Rejoice in the things that are present; all else is beyond thee. ~Montaigne
Nothing ever gets anywhere. The earth keeps turning round and gets nowhere. The moment is the only thing that counts. ~Jean Cocteau, Professional Secrets, 1922
Eternity is not something that begins after you are dead. It is going on all the time. ~Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Forever – is composed of Nows –
'Tis not a different time...
Let Months dissolve in further Months –
And Years – exhale in Years...
~Emily Dickinson, c.1862
Could we see when and where we are to meet again, we would be more tender when we bid our friends goodbye. ~Marie Louise De La Ramee
Why worry about what might or might not happen when the heart is longing only to drink in the breath of this moment? ~Cathy Ginter
This very moment is a seed from which tomorrow's flowers grow. ~Margaret Lindsey
The other day a man asked me what I thought was the best time of life. "Why," I answered without a thought, "now." ~David Grayson
Transformation can only take place immediately; the revolution is now, not tomorrow. ~Jiddu Krishnamurti
It is only possible to live happily-ever-after on a day-to-day basis. ~Margaret Bonnano
Wishes come –
Life is trapped
I would rather have faith that here and now will be complete, than faith that heaven is the answer. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), My Little Book of Life, 1912
Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. And today? Today is a gift. That's why we call it the present. ~Babatunde Olatunji, a similar version is also attributed to Alice Morse Earle
Trust no future, howe'er pleasant!
Let the dead past bury its dead!
Act, — act in the living Present!
Heart within and God o'erhead.
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Psalm of Life
Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
I have realized that the past and future are real illusions, that they exist in the present, which is what there is and all there is. ~Alan Watts
You can live in the past with your memories, or in the future with your dreams. What's hard is to find an illusion for the present. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
It's not what if, it's what now. ~Author Unknown
Be here now. Be someplace else later. Is that so complicated? ~David Bader
The key to enjoying the moment is to always carry a list of "Things I Gotta Do That Can Wait." ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Let the credit card companies market as they will, the only thing that's priceless is Now. ~Terri Guillemets, 2005
Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow. Let me hold you while I may, for it may not always be so. One day I shall dig my nails into the earth, or bury my face in the pillow, or stretch myself taut, or raise my hands to the sky and want, more than all the world, your return. ~Mary Jean Iron
We are always getting ready to live but never living. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
Not the power to remember, but its very opposite, the power to forget, is a necessary condition for our existence. ~Sholem Asch, The Nazarene, 1939
Children have neither past nor future; they enjoy the present, which very few of us do. ~Jean de la Bruyere
A bottle of wine
Still to be drunk,
A bundle of thoughts
Still to be thunk.
~Robert Brault, "Makings of a Perfect Afternoon," rbrault.blogspot.com
If you worry about what might be, and wonder what might have been, you will ignore what is. ~Author Unknown
Mrs. Snow had lived forty years, and for fifteen of those years she had been too busy wishing things were different to find much time to enjoy things as they were. ~Eleanor H. Porter, Pollyanna, 1912
Let us not look back in anger, nor forward in fear, but around in awareness. ~James Thurber
I try to grasp the infinite, when I have never grasped the hour.
I want heaven, and I have never laid hold of the earth.
I try to reach God, when I have never reached man.
Today goes unperformed, yet I demand an infinity of years.
I will not ask of the resurrection after death. I am concerned with the resurrection in life. I who am buried in the tomb of today want the assurance of ascension tomorrow. I do not ask if I shall live then — I am not sure that I live now.
I do not want a beautiful theory that will make my going sweet. I want a beautiful fact that will sweeten my day.
~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), "A Soul's Faring: LXIX," A Soul's Faring, 1921
We crucify ourselves between two thieves: regret for yesterday and fear of tomorrow. ~Fulton Oursler
Chasing the past, I stumbled into the future. ~Terri Guillemets
Seize from every moment its unique novelty, and do not prepare your joys. ~André Gide, Nourritures Terrestres
We know nothing of tomorrow; our business is to be good and happy today. ~Sydney Smith
Why be saddled with this thing called life expectancy? Of what relevance to an individual is such a statistic? Am I to concern myself with an allotment of days I never had and was never promised? Must I check off each day of my life as if I am subtracting from this imaginary hoard? No, on the contrary, I will add each day of my life to my treasure of days lived. And with each day, my treasure will grow, not diminish. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
In today already walks tomorrow. ~Friedrich von Schiller
When I am anxious it is because I am living in the future. When I am depressed it is because I am living in the past. ~Author Unknown
The ability to be in the present moment is a major component of mental wellness. ~Abraham Maslow
The future is always beginning now. ~Mark Strand, Reasons for Moving
As you wait for better days, don't forget to enjoy today, in case they've already started. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
People are always worried about what's happening next. They often find it difficult to stand still, to occupy the now without worrying about the future. People are not generally satisfied with what they have; they are very concerned with what they are going to have. ~Garth Stein, The Art of Racing in the Rain, 2008
Life lived for tomorrow will always be just a day away from being realized. ~Leo Buscaglia
The future is no place to place your better days. ~Dave Matthews
The future is an opaque mirror. Anyone who tries to look into it sees nothing but the dim outlines of an old and worried face. ~Jim Bishop
Your heart will be shattered by sorrow
If you force it to live
In tomorrow's ephemeral imagination-world
Instead of in today's eternal Reality-Now.
~Sri Chinmoy, Ten Thousand Flower-Flames
If a man examine carefully his thoughts he will be surprised to find how much he lives in the future. His well-being is always ahead. ~Emerson, Journals, 1827
The nightingales came to my window and I did not heed. Now they have flown away into the deep wood, and that is why I am here in the deep wood of my life, looking for my lost birds that sing.
I was insensate to the roses. Then one day the winter was upon me, and I came frantically imploring my June...
I will take a little more time out of life to live — one hour for the dawn, and one for the evening, and one for the singing fields; one rose hour for the gardens, and one to set my feet on the crest of hills.
Against the glitter of dew and the light of stars, the feel of the hills and the call of the meadows, I will measure my petty day. ~Muriel Strode (1875–1964), "A Soul's Faring: LVI," A Soul's Faring, 1921
Have I forsaken my nature for my desires? Have I made a mistake by anticipating my future and shunning my present? Perhaps I have. An embarrassing deathbed regret. ~Garth Stein, The Art of Racing in the Rain, 2008
Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present. ~Marcus Aurelius Antoninus
I got the blues thinking of the future, so I left off and made some marmalade. It's amazing how it cheers one up to shred oranges and scrub the floor. ~D.H. Lawrence
One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon — instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today. ~Dale Carnegie
Pile up too many tomorrows and you'll find that you've collected nothing but a bunch of empty yesterdays. ~The Music Man
We steal if we touch tomorrow. It is God's. ~Henry Ward Beecher
God made the world round so we would never be able to see too far down the road. ~Isak Dinesen
Slight not what's near through aiming at what's far. ~Euripides
If you wait for tomorrow, tomorrow comes. If you don't wait for tomorrow, tomorrow comes. ~Senegalese Proverb
Last saved 2021 Jan 15 Fri 21:04 PST