Jose Ortega y Gasset

Spanish philosopher who advocated leadership by an intellectual elite (1883-1955)

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We cannot put off living until we are ready. The most salient characteristic of life is its coerciveness it is always urgent, 'here and now,' without any possible postponement. Life is fired at us point-blank.
An unemployed existence is a worse negation of life than death itself.
Effort is only effort when it begins to hurt.
Excellence means when a man or woman asks of himself more than others do.
For the person for whom small things do not exist, the great is not great.
Life is a series of collisions with the future it is not the sum of what we have been, but what we yearn to be.
Life is a series of collisions with the future; it is not the sum of what we have been, but what we yearn to be.
Love is that splendid triggering of human vitality... the supreme activity which nature affords anyone for going out of himself toward someone else.
Love is that splendid triggering of human vitalitythe supreme activity which nature affords anyone for going out of himself toward someone else.
Order is not pressure which is imposed on society from without, but an equilibrium which is set up from within.
Our firmest convictions are apt to be the most suspect, they mark our limitations and our bounds. Life is a petty thing unless it is moved by the indomitable urge to extend its boundaries.
Stupefaction, when it persists, becomes stupidity.
The characteristic of the hour is that the commonplace mind, knowing itself to be commonplace, has the assurance to proclaim the rights of the commonplace and to impose them wherever it will.
The metaphor is perhaps one of man's most fruitful potentialities. Its efficacy verges on magic, and it seems a tool for creation which God forgot inside one of His creatures when He made him.
The most radical division that it is possible to make of humanity is that which splits it into two classes of creatures Those who make great demands on themselves, piling up difficulties and duties and those who demand nothing special of themselves, bu
The world is the sum-total of our vital possibilities.
There may be as much nobility in being last as in being first, because the two positions are equally necessary in the world, the one to complement the other.
To be surprised, to wonder, is to begin to understand.
Under the species of Syndicalism and Fascism there appears for the first time in Europe a type of man who does not want to give reasons or to be right, but simply shows himself resolved to impose his opinions.
We distinguish the excellent man from the common man by saying that the former is the one who makes great demands upon himself, and the latter who makes no demands on himself.
We live at a time when man believes himself fabulously capable of creation, but he does not know what to create.

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