Torn Scraps: The Mind of Franz Kafka

“Many a book is like a key to unknown chambers within the castle of one’s own self.”
― Franz Kafka
“A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us.”
― Franz Kafka
“Youth is happy because it has the capacity to see beauty. Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.”
― Franz Kafka
“I write differently from what I speak, I speak differently from what I think, I think differently from the way I ought to think, and so it all proceeds into deepest darkness.”
― Franz Kafka
“Don’t bend; don’t water it down; don’t try to make it logical; don’t edit your own soul according to the fashion. Rather, follow your most intense obsessions mercilessly.”
― Franz Kafka
“I am free and that is why I am lost.”
― Franz Kafka
“A First Sign of the Beginning of Understanding is the Wish to Die.”
― Franz Kafka
“I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound or stab us. If the book we’re reading doesn’t wake us up with a blow to the head, what are we reading for? So that it will make us happy, as you write? Good Lord, we would be happy precisely if we had no books, and the kind of books that make us happy are the kind we could write ourselves if we had to. But we need books that affect us like a disaster, that grieve us deeply, like the death of someone we loved more than ourselves, like being banished into forests far from everyone, like a suicide. A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us. That is my belief.”
― Franz Kafka
“I am a cage, in search of a bird.”
― Franz Kafka
“All language is but a poor translation.”
― Franz Kafka
“I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us.”
― Franz Kafka
“The meaning of life is that it stops.”
― Franz Kafka
“You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.”
― Franz Kafka
“Books are a narcotic.”
― Franz Kafka
“By believing passionately in something that still does not exist, we create it. The nonexistent is whatever we have not sufficiently desired.”
― Franz Kafka
“A non-writing writer is a monster courting insanity.”
― Franz Kafka
“Slept, awoke, slept, awoke, miserable life.”
― Franz Kafka
“Paths are made by walking”
― Franz Kafka
“…I can’t think of any greater happiness than to be with you all the time, without interruption, endlessly, even though I feel that here in this world there’s no undisturbed place for our love, neither in the village nor anywhere else; and I dream of a grave, deep and narrow, where we could clasp each other in our arms as with clamps, and I would hide my face in you and you would hide your face in me, and nobody would ever see us any more.”
― Franz Kafka, Franz Kafka’s The Castle
“I have the true feeling of myself only when I am unbearably unhappy.”
― Franz Kafka
“Writing is utter solitude, the descent into the cold abyss of oneself.”
― Franz Kafka
“Now I can look at you in peace; I don’t eat you any more.”
― Franz Kafka
“L’éternité, c’est long … surtout vers la fin.”
― Franz Kafka
“I am in chains. Don’t touch my chains.”
― Franz Kafka
“There is an infinite amount of hope in the universe … but not for us.”
― Franz Kafka
“Better to have, and not need, than to need, and not have.”
― Franz Kafka
“In man’s struggle against the world, bet on the world.”
― Franz Kafka
“Love is, that you are the knife which I plunge into myself.”
― Franz Kafka
“They say ignorance is bliss…. they’re wrong ”
― Franz Kafka
“As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect.”
― Franz Kafka, The Metamorphosis

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