John Updike Quotes About Self

Browse 12 famous quotes of John Updike about Self.

"Truth should not be forced; it should simply manifest itself, like a woman who has in her privacy reflected and coolly decided to bestow herself upon a certain man." ~ John Updike
"A leader is one who, out of madness or goodness, volunteers to take upon himself the woe of the people. There are few men so foolish, hence the erratic quality of leadership in the world." ~ John Updike
"The essential self is innocent, and when it tastes its own innocence knows that it lives for ever." ~ John Updike
"For many men, work is the effective religion, a ritual occupation and inflexible orientation which permits them to imagine that the problem of their personal death has been solved. Unamuno: ‘Work is the only practical consolation for having been born.' My own chosen career — its dispersal and multiplication of the self through publication, its daily excretion of yet more words, the eventual reifying of those words into books — certainly is a practical consolation, a kind of bicycle which, if I were ever to stop pedaling, would dump me flat on my side. Religion enables us to ignore nothingness and get on with the jobs of life." ~ John Updike
"How many more, I must ask myself,such perfect ends of Augusts will I witness?" ~ John Updike
"On being conscious of being a writer: As soon as one is aware of being "somebody," to be watched and listened to with extra interest, input ceases, and the performer goes blind and deaf in his overanimation. [...] Most of the best fiction is written out of early impressions, taken in before the writer became conscious of himself as a writer. The best seeing is done by the hunted and the hunter, the vulnerable and the hungry; the "successful" writer acquires a film over his eyes. His eyes get fat. Self-importance is a thickened, occluding form of self-consciousness. The binge, the fling, the trip – all attempt to shake the film and get back under the dinning-room table, with a child's beautifully clear eyes." ~ John Updike
"If you just have the guts to be yourself, other people'll pay your price." ~ John Updike
"From earliest childhood I was charmed by the materials of my craft, by pencils and paper and, later, by the typewriter and the entire apparatus of printing. To condense from one's memories and fantasies and small discoveries dark marks on paper which become handsomely reproducible many times over still seems to me, after nearly 30 years concerned with the making of books, a magical act, and a delightful technical process. To distribute oneself thus, as a kind of confetti shower falling upon the heads and shoulders of mankind out of bookstores and the pages of magazines is surely a great privilege and a defiance of the usual earthbound laws whereby human beings make themselves known to one another." ~ John Updike
"...but with his mother there's no question of liking him they're not even in a way separate people he began in her stomach and if she gave him life she can take it away and if he feels that withdrawal it will be the grave itself." ~ John Updike
"The mind cannot fall asleep as long as it watches itself. Only when the mind moves unwatched and becomes absorbed in images that tug it as it were to one side does self-consciousness dissolve and sleep with its healing, brilliantly detailed fictions pour in upon the jittery spirit. Falling asleep is a study in trust. Likewise, religion tries to put as ease with the world. Being human cannot be borne alone. We need other presences. We need soft night noises-a mother speaking downstairs. We need the little clicks and sighs of a sustaining otherness. We need the gods." ~ John Updike
"In fact we do not try to picture the afterlife, nor is it our selves in our nervous tics and optical flecks that we wish to perpetuate; it is the self as the window on the world that we can't bear to thinkof shutting. My mind when I was a boy of ten or eleven sent up its silent scream at the thought of future aeons -- at the thought of the cosmic party going on without me. The yearning for an afterlife is the opposite of selfish: it is love and praise of the world that we are privileged, in this complex interval of light, to witness and experience." ~ John Updike
"The faith in an afterlife, however much our reason ridicules it, very modestly extends our faith that each moment of our consciousness will be followed by another - that a coherent matrix has been prepared for this precious self of ours. The guarantee that our self enjoys an intended relation to the outer world is most, if not all, of what we ask from religion. God is the self projected onto reality by our natural and necessary optimism. He is the not-me personified." ~ John Updike
Quotes About self

Today's Quote

I don't need much coaxing."
Author: Carla Bley

Famous Authors

Popular Topics