When men stop believing in God, it isn't that they then believe in nothing: they believe in everything.
A book is a fragile creature, it suffers the wear of time, it fears rodents, the elements and clumsy hands. so the librarian protects the books not only against mankind but also against nature and devotes his life to this war with the forces of oblivion.
The real hero is always a hero by mistake; he dreams of being an honest coward like everybody else.
Better reality than a dream: if something is real, then it's real and you're not to blame.
There is no great sport in having bullets flying about one in every direction, but I find they have less horror when among them than when in anticipation.
The good of a book lies in its being read. A book is made up of signs that speak of other signs, which in their turn speak of things. Without an eye to read them, a book contains signs that produce no concepts; therefore it is dumb.
Fear prophets and those prepared to die for the truth, for as a rule they make many others die with them, often before them, at times instead of them.
Translation is the art of failure.
Perhaps the mission of those who love mankind is to make people laugh at the truth, to make truth laugh, because the only truth lies in learning to free ourselves from insane passion for the truth.
A dream is a scripture, and many scriptures are nothing but dreams.
The comic is the perception of the opposite; humor is the feeling of it.
Nothing gives a fearful man more courage than another's fear.
But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.
I would define the poetic effect as the capacity that a text displays for continuing to generate different readings, without ever being completely consumed.
I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.
In the United States there's a Puritan ethic and a mythology of success. He who is successful is good. In Latin countries, in Catholic countries, a successful person is a sinner.