47 Quotes About Egoism


Egoism allows the foundation of self interest to be treated as a part of morality. For many, this can lead to narcissistic behavior. For others. they just become so self absorbed with their own self interests that others are left feeling discarded and hurt. Here is a look at some of the best quotes about egoism that remind us how this type of behavior can impact others.

“A Strange melancholy pervades me to which I hesitate to give the grave and beautiful name of sorrow. The idea of sorrow has always appealed to me but now I am almost ashamed of it’s complete egoism.”

“A strong egoism is a protection against disease, but in the last resort we must begin to love in order that we may not fall ill, and must fall ill if, in consequence of frustration, we cannot love.”

“All religions teach one basic discipline – the removal from the mind of the blemish of egoism, of running after little joys.”

“An animal that embarks on forming states without greatly restricting egoism will perish.”

“As I began to love myself I freed myself of anything that is no good for my health – food, people, things, situations, and everything that drew me down and away from myself. At first I called this attitude a healthy egoism. Today I know it is Love of Oneself.”

“But egoism is more than this. It is the realization by the individual that he is above all institutions and all formulas; that they exist only so far as he chooses to make them his own by accepting them.”

“Declare your jihad on thirteen enemies you cannot see – Egoism, Arrogance, Conceit, Selfishness, Greed, Lust, Intolerance, Anger, Lying, Cheating, Gossiping and Slandering. If you can master and destroy them, then will be ready to fight the enemy you can see.”

“Egoism , which is the moving force of the world, and altruism , which is its morality , these two contradictory instincts , of which one is so plain and the other so mysterious, cannot serve us unless in the incomprehensible alliance of their irreconcilable antagonism.”

“Egoism is the law of perspective applied to feelings: what is closest appears large and weighty, and as one moves farther away size and weight decrease.”

“Egoism is the very essence of a noble soul.”

“Every man of action has a strong dose of egoism, pride, hardness, and cunning. But all those things will be regarded as high qualities if he can make them the means to achieve great ends.”

“For a solitary animal egoism is a virtue that tends to preserve and improve the species: in any kind of community it becomes a destructive vice.”

“Get it into your head once and for all, my simple and very fainthearted fellow, that what fools call humanness is nothing but a weakness born of fear and egoism; that this chimerical virtue, enslaving only weak men, is unknown to those whose character is formed by stoicism, courage, and philosophy.”

“God is the Sun and when His rays fall upon your heart, not impeded by the clouds of egoism, the lotus blooms and the petals unfold.”

“Human pride and egoism always create divisions, build walls of indifference, hate and violence. The Holy Spirit, on the other hand, makes hearts capable of understanding the languages of all, as he re-establishes the bridge of authentic communication between earth and Heaven.”

“I am not primarily an advocate of capitalism, but of egoism; I am not primarily an advocate of egoism, but of reason. If one recognizes the supremacy of reason and applies it consistently, all the rest follows.”

“I am satisfied with the mystery of the eternity of life.”

“I cannot conceive of a God who rewards and punishes his creatures, or has a will of the type of which we are conscious in ourselves.”

“I have been judged to be a pessimist but what abyss of ignorance and low egoism is not hidden in one who thinks that Man is the god of himself and that his future can only be triumphant?”

“I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.”

“If we are to grow in love, the prisons of our egoism must be unlocked. This implies suffering, constant effort and repeated choices.”

“If you do not want to explore an egoism you should not read autobiography.”

“In brief, egoism in its modern interpretation, is the antithesis, not of altruism, but of idealism.”

“In the development of mankind as a whole, just as in individuals, love alone acts as the civilizing factor in the sense that it brings a change from egoism to altruism.”

“It is precisely our egoism, our self-centeredness and self-love that cause all our difficulties, our lack of freedom in suffering, our disappointments and our anguish of soul and body.”

“It is something like the way dame Nature gathers round a foreign body an envelope of some insensitive tissue which can protect from evil that which it would otherwise harm by contact.”

“It’s no accident that capitalism has brought with it progress, not merely in production but also in knowledge. Egoism and competition are, alas, stronger forces than public spirit and sense of duty.”

“My conjecture is that most people will refuse to let go, even when their lives have become boring (at least in comparisons with possible lives lived by new generations). If this happens, there will eventually be no room for new generations.”

“Nature admits of no permanence in the relation between man and woman. It is only man’s egoism that wants to keep woman like some buried treasure.”

“No egoism is so insufferable as that of the Christian with regard to his soul.”

“No more materialism, no more this egoism, I must become spiritual.”

“One must not allow oneself to skid down to isolationism and unbridled economic egoism. … The second possible mistake would be excessive interference into the economic life of the country.”

“Our German language has a word which in a magnificent way denotes conduct based on this spirit: doing one’s duty [Pflichterfüllung]-which means serving the community instead of contenting oneself. ”

“Perhaps it will be found that to obtain a just republic (and it is to secure our just rights that we resort to government at all) it must be so extensive as that local egoisms may never reach its greater part.”

“Point me out the happy man and I will point you out either egotism, selfishness, evil – or else an absolute ignorance.”

“Self-interest, or rather self-love, or egoism, has been more plausibly substituted as the basis of morality.”

“Sheer egoism… Writers share this characteristic with scientists, artists, politicians, lawyers, soldiers, successful businessmen – in short, with the whole top crust of humanity.”

“The constant reprimands made me hyperconscious of my own performance, and so instead of getting rid of self, I had become embedded in the egoism I was supposed to transcend.”

“The egoism which enters into our theories does not affect their sincerity; rather, the more our egoism is satisfied, the more robust is our belief.”

“The Master was entirely free from four things: prejudice, foregone conclusions, obstinacy, and egoism.”

“There is a sort of jealousy which needs very little fire; it is hardly a passion, but a blight bred in the cloudy, damp despondency of uneasy egoism.”

“There is no word more generally misinterpreted than the word egoism, in its modern sense.”

“We must master our egoism, and through this mastery, step outside ourselves and educate ourselves in giving. Fasting requires that we rediscover all that is alive around us, and reconcile ourselves with our environment.”

“What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information.”

“What we now want is closer contact and better understanding between individuals and communities all over the earth, and the elimination of egoism and pride which is always prone to plunge the world into primeval barbarism and strife…”

“When a man is wrapped up in himself, he makes a pretty small package.”

“Who among us has the strength to oppose petty egoism, those petty good feelings, pity and remorse?”

There are many theories to egoism and how it applies to theories of ethics. The pursuit of self interest is has so many negative connotations paired with it that it can be difficult to see where egoism fits in.