Vaclav Havel Quotes

Enjoy the top 119 famous quotes, sayings and quotations by Vaclav Havel.

Vaclav Havel Quotes

People who live in the post-totalitarian system know only too well that the question of whether one or several political parties are in power, and how these parties define and label themselves, is of far less importance than the question of whether or not it is possible to live like a human being.
— Vaclav Havel —

Hope is a state of mind, not of the world. Hope, in this deep and powerful sense, is not the same as joy that things are going well, or willingness to invest in enterprises that are obviously heading for success, but rather an ability to work for something because it is good.

— Vaclav Havel

Theater is there to search for questions. It doesn't give you instructions.

— Vaclav Havel

Genuine politics
even politics worthy of the name
the only politics I am willing to devote myself to
is simply a matter of serving those around us: serving the community and serving those who will come after us. Its deepest roots are moral because it is a responsibility expressed through action, to and for the whole.

— Vaclav Havel

If the world is to change for the better it must start with a change in human consciousness, in the very humanness of modern man.

— Vaclav Havel

People, your Government has returned to you!

— Vaclav Havel

Someone who does not draw strength from himself and who is incapable of finding the meaning of his life within himself will ... seek the map to his own orientation somewhere outside himself-in some ideology, organization, or society, and then, however active he may appear to be, he is merely waiting, depending. He waits to see what others will do, or what roles they will assign to him, and he depends on them-and if they don't do anything or if they botch things, he succumbs to disillusion, despair, and ultimately, resignation.

— Vaclav Havel

Self-confidence is not pride. Just the contrary: only a person or a nation that is self-confident, in the best sense of the word, is capable of listening to others, accepting them as equals, forgiving its enemies and regretting its own guilt.

— Vaclav Havel

Sober perseverance is more effective than enthusiastic emotions, which are all too capable of being transferred, with little difficulty, to something different each day.

— Vaclav Havel

The award is destined for scientists who do not fear to touch on some of the darkest aspects of being without betraying what they have achieved. On the contrary, they head in this direction.

— Vaclav Havel

Man is in fact nailed down - like Christ on the Cross - to a grid of paradoxes ... he balances between the torment of not knowing his mission and the joy of carrying it out, between nothingness and meaningfulness. And like Christ, he is in fact victorious by virtue of his defeats.

— Vaclav Havel

If one were required to increase the dramatic seriousness of his face in relation to the seriousness of the problems he had to confront, he would quickly petrify and become his own statue.

— Vaclav Havel

I have preserved my identity, put its credibility to the test and defended my dignity. What good this will bring the world I don't know. But for me it is good.

— Vaclav Havel

The only salvation of the world today ... is the rapid dissemination of the basic values of the West, that is, the ideas of democracy, human rights, the civil society, and the free market.

— Vaclav Havel

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