LIN YUTANG QUOTES

Chinese writer (1895-1976)

Love is an immortal wound that cannot be closed up. A person loses something, a part of her soul, when she loves someone. And she goes about looking for that lost part of her soul, for she knows that otherwise she is incomplete and cannot be at rest. It is only when she is with the person she loves that she becomes complete again in herself; but the moment he leaves, she loses that part which he has taken with him and knows no rest till she has found him once more.

LIN YUTANG, Moment in Peking

2 likes

Tags: love


If you can spend a perfectly useless afternoon in a perfectly useless manner, you have learned how to live.

LIN YUTANG, The Literary Digest, 1938

2 likes

Tags: life


The greater success a man has made, the more he fears a climb down.

LIN YUTANG, The Importance of Living

1 likes

Tags: success


The busy man is never wise and the wise man is never busy.

LIN YUTANG, The Importance of Living

1 likes


Alas, our rulers are not gods, but puny, fallible men, like the kings who constantly forget their parts, and we common men should be their prompters.

LIN YUTANG, Between Tears and Laughter

0 likes


Once [China] had a destiny. Once she was a conqueror. Now her greatest destiny seems to be merely to exist, to survive.

LIN YUTANG, My Country and My People

0 likes


For every good book is worth the reader's while when there is a real communion of the spirit, and this is possible only when he feels he is being taken into the author's confidence and the author is willing to reveal to him the innermost searchings of his heart and talk, as it were, in an unbuttoned mood, collar and tie loose, as by a friend's fireside.

LIN YUTANG, Between Tears and Laughter

0 likes

Tags: books


The only part of Christian teachings which will be truly accepted by the Chinese people is Christ's injunction to be "harmless as doves" but "wise as serpents."

LIN YUTANG, My Country and My People

0 likes

Tags: Christianity


The more we justify our beliefs, the more narrow-minded we become.

LIN YUTANG, The Importance of Living

0 likes

Tags: belief


All women's dresses, in every age and country, are merely variations on the eternal struggle between the admitted desire to dress and the unadmitted desire to undress.

LIN YUTANG, The Chinese Mercury, 1937

0 likes

Tags: fashion


Since the invention of the flush toilet and the vacuum carpet cleaner, the modern man seems to judge a man's moral standards by his cleanliness, and thinks a dog the more highly civilized for having a weekly bath and a winter wrapper round his belly.

LIN YUTANG, My Country and My People

0 likes


The age calls for simple statements and restatements of simple truths. The prophets of doom are involved, those who would bring light must be clear.

LIN YUTANG, preface, Between Tears and Laughter

0 likes


All I know is that if God loves me only half as much as my mother does, he will not send me to Hell.

LIN YUTANG, The Importance of Living

0 likes

Tags: Hell


I am able to confess because, unlike these patriots, I am not ashamed of my country. And I can lay bare her troubles because I have not lost hope. China is bigger than her little patriots, and does not require their whitewashing. She will, as she always did, right herself again.

LIN YUTANG, preface, My Country and My People

0 likes


Sometimes there are more tears than laughter, and sometimes there is more laughter than tears, and sometimes you feel so choked you can neither weep nor laugh. For tears and laughter there will always be so long as there is human life. When our tear wells have run dry and the voice of laughter is silenced, the world will be truly dead.

LIN YUTANG, Between Tears and Laughter

0 likes

Tags: tears, laughter


The humour of the Chinese people in inventing gunpowder and finding its best use in making firecrackers for their grandfathers' birthdays is merely symbolical of their inventiveness along merely pacific lines.

LIN YUTANG, My Country and My People

0 likes


I rather despise claims to objectivity in philosophy; the point of view is the thing.

LIN YUTANG, preface, The Importance of Living

0 likes

Tags: philosophy


Somewhere in [China's] soul lurks the cunning of an old dog, and it is a cunning that is strangely impressive. What a strange old soul! What a great old soul!

LIN YUTANG, My Country and My People

0 likes


There is more hope in a heather rose than in all the tons of Teutonic philosophy.

LIN YUTANG, preface, Between Tears and Laughter

0 likes

Tags: roses


The world I believe is far too serious, and being far too serious ... it has need of a wise and merry philosophy.

LIN YUTANG, The Importance of Living

0 likes