The only paradise is paradise lost.
—Marcel Proust (1871–1922) French Novelist
Who kisses the feet of his mother, kisses the step of Paradise.
It is difficult to write a paradise when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse. It is obviously much easier to find inhabitants for an inferno or even a purgatorio.
—Ezra Pound (1885-1972) American Poet, Translator, Critic
Everyone who has ever built anywhere a “new heaven” first found the power thereto in his own hell.
—Friedrich Nietzsche (1844–1900) German Philosopher, Scholar, Writer
From the very fountain of enchantment there arises a taste of bitterness to spread anguish amongst the flowers.
—Lucretius (c.99–55 BCE) Roman Epicurean Poet, Philosopher
We are at heart so profoundly anarchistic that the only form of state we can imagine living in is Utopian; and so cynical that the only Utopia we can believe in is authoritarian.
—Lionel Trilling (1905–75) American Literary Critic
Two Paradises t’were in one, to live in Paradise alone.
—Andrew Marvell (1621–78) English Metaphysical Poet
Every man has a paradise around him till he sins and the angel of an accusing conscience drives him from his Eden. And even then there are holy hours, when this angel sleeps, and man comes back, and with the innocent eyes of a child looks into his lost paradise again—into the broad gates and rural solitudes of nature.
—Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–82) American Poet, Educator, Academic
It is a curious thing that every creed promises a paradise which will be absolutely uninhabitable for anyone of civilized taste.
—Evelyn Waugh (1903–66) British Novelist, Essayist, Biographer
Santa Barbara is a paradise; Disneyland is a paradise; the U.S. is a paradise. Paradise is just paradise. Mournful, monotonous, and superficial though it may be, it is paradise. There is no other.
—Jean Baudrillard (1929–2007) French Sociologist, Philosopher
Thought would destroy their paradise.
—Thomas Gray (1716–71) English Poet, Book Collector
It gets to seem as if way back in the Garden of Eden after the Fall, Adam and Eve had begged the Lord to forgive them and He, in his boundless exasperation, had said, “All right, then. Stay. Stay in the Garden. Get civilized. Procreate. Muck it up.” And they did.
—Diane Arbus (1923–71) American Photographer
If God hath made this world so fair, where sin and death abound, how beautiful, beyond compare, will paradise be found.
—James Montgomery (1771–1854) English Hymn writer, Poet, Editor, Humanitarian
You cannot get into Paradise without a guide.
Utopias are presented for our inspection as a critique of the human state. If they are to be treated as anything but trivial exercises of the imagination. I suggest there is a simple test we can apply. We must forget the whole paraphernalia of social description, demonstration, expostulation, approbation, condemnation. We have to say to ourselves, “How would I myself live in this proposed society? How long would it be before I went stark staring mad?”
—William Golding (1911–93) English Novelist
Patience is the key to paradise.
A wife should be as humble as a lamb, busy as a bee, as beautiful as a bird of paradise and faithful as a turtle dove.
Every daring attempt to make a great change in existing conditions, every lofty vision of new possibilities for the human race, has been labeled Utopian.
—Emma Goldman (1869–1940) Lithuanian-American Anarchist, Feminist
A fool’s paradise is a wise man’s hell!
—Thomas Fuller (1608–61) English Cleric, Historian
Utility is when you have one telephone, luxury is when you have two, opulence is when you have three—and paradise is when you have none.
—Doug Larson (1926–2017) American Columnist
Without human companions, paradise itself would be an undesirable place.
Remembrance is the only paradise out of which we cannot be driven away. Indeed our first parents were not to be deprived of it.
—Jean Paul (1763–1825) German Novelist, Humorist
We must prefer real hell to an imaginary paradise.
—Simone Weil (1909–1943) French Philosopher, Political Activist
Your library is your paradise.
—Desiderius Erasmus (c.1469–1536) Dutch Humanist, Scholar
The abominable effort to take one’s sins with one to paradise.
—Andre Gide (1869–1951) French Novelist
Paradise can be found on the back of horses, in books and between the breasts of women
Hell shared with a sage is better than paradise with a fool.
Through clever and constant application of propaganda, people can be made to see paradise as hell, and also the other way round, to consider the most wretched sort of life as paradise.
—Adolf Hitler (1889–1945) Nazi Leader, Chancellor of Germany
A beautiful vacuum filled with wealthy monogamists, all powerful and members of the best families all drinking themselves to death.
—Ernest Hemingway (1899–1961) American Author, Journalist, Short Story Writer
With a piece of bread in your hand you’ll find paradise under a pine tree.