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 :: 1828-1910, Russian Novelist, Philosopher

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Joy can be real only if people look on their life as a service, and have a definite object in life outside themselves and their personal happiness.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Service]

 

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A man is like a fraction whose numerator is what he is and whose denominator is what he thinks of himself. The larger the denominator the smaller the fraction.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Thoughts and Thinking]

 

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Everything that I understand, I understand only because I love.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Understanding]

 

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There is only one time that is important -- NOW! It is the most important time because it is the only time hat we have any power.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Present]

 

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Without knowing what I am and why I am here, life is impossible.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Purpose]

 

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True science investigates and brings to human perception such truths and such knowledge as the people of a given time and society consider most important. Art transmits these truths from the region of perception to the region of emotion.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Science and Scientists]

 

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I am always with myself and it is I who am my tormentor.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Self-control]

 

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The sobs and tears of joy he had not foreseen rose with such force within him that his whole body shook and for a long time prevented him from speaking. Falling on his knees by her bed. He held his wife's hand to his lips and kissed it, and her hand responded to his kisses with weak movement of finger. Meanwhile, at the foot of the bed, in the midwife's expert hands, like the flame of a lamp, flickered the life of a human being who had never existed before...
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Kisses and Kissing]

 

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I sit on a man's back, choking him and making him carry me, and yet assure myself and others that I am very sorry for him and wish to ease his lot by all possible means -- except by getting off his back.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Liberals]

 

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Only those live who do good.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Life and Living]

 

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All, everything that I understand, I understand only because I love.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Love]

 

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Love is life. All, everything that I understand, I understand only because I love. Everything is, everything exists, only because I love. Everything is united by it alone. Love is God, and to die means that I, a particle of love, shall return to the general and eternal source.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Love]

 

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Music is the shorthand of emotion.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Music]

 

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All happy families resemble one another; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Family]

 

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He never chooses an opinion, he just wears whatever happens to be in style.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Fashion]

 

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The best generals I have known were... stupid or absent-minded men. Not only does a good army commander not need any special qualities, on the contrary he needs the absence of the highest and best human attributes -- love, poetry, tenderness, and philosophic inquiring doubt. He should be limited, firmly convinced that what he is doing is very important (otherwise he will not have sufficient patience), and only then will he be a brave leader. God forbid that he should be humane, should love, or pity, or think of what is just and unjust.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Generals]

 

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In quiet and untroubled times it seems to every administrator that it is only by his efforts that the whole population under his rule is kept going, and in this consciousness of being indispensable every administrator finds the chief reward of his labor and efforts. While the sea of history remains calm the ruler-administrator in his frail bark, holding on with a boat hook to the ship of the people and himself moving, naturally imagines that his efforts move the ship he is holding on to. But as soon as a storm arises and the sea begins to heave and the ship to move, such a delusion is no longer possible. The ship moves independently with its own enormous motion, the boat hook no longer reaches the moving vessel, and suddenly the administrator, instead of appearing a ruler and a source of power, becomes an insignificant, useless, feeble man.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Government]

 

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In historic events, the so-called great men are labels giving names to events, and like labels they have but the smallest connection with the event itself. Every act of theirs, which appears to them an act of their own will, is in an historical sense involuntary and is related to the whole course of history and predestined from eternity.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Greatness]

 

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There is no greatness where there is not simplicity, goodness and truth.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Greatness]

 

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Man lives consciously for himself, but is an unconscious instrument in the attainment of the historic, universal, aims of humanity.
~ Count Leo Tolstoy - [Humankind]

 

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