Ernst Junger quotes

  • I am an anarch – not because I despise authority, but because I need it. Likewise, I am not a nonbeliever, but a man who demands something worth believing in.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Believe #Men #Needs

  • I came to realize that one single human being, comprehended in his depth, who gives generously from the treasures of his heart, bestows on us more riches than Caesar or Alexander could ever conquer. Here is our kingdom, the best of monarchies, the best republic. Here is our garden, our happiness.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Heart #Garden #Giving

  • The anarchist, as the born foe of authority, will be destroyed by it after damaging it more or less. The anarch, on the other hand, has appropriated authority; he is sovereign. He therefore behaves as a neutral power vis-à-vis state and society. He may like, dislike, or be indifferent to whatever occurs in them. That is what determines his conduct; he invests no emotional values.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Emotional #Hands #May

  • The anarch wages his own wars, even when marching in rank and file
    -- Ernst Junger

    #War #Wages #Anarchy

  • For the anarch, little is changed when he strips off a uniform that he wore partly as fool's motley, partly as camouflage. It covers his spiritual freedom, which he will objectivate during such transitions. This distinguishes him from the anarchist, who, objectively unfree, starts raging until he is thrust into a more rigorous straitjacket.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Spiritual #Transition #Camouflage

  • The (capital punishment) controversy passes the anarch by. For him, the linking of death and punishment is absurd. In this respect, he is closer to the wrongdoer than to the judge, for the high-ranking culprit who is condemned to death is not prepared to acknowledge his sentence as atonement; rather, he sees his guilt in his own inadequacy. Thus, he recognizes himself not as a moral but as a tragic person.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Punishment #Judging #Guilt

  • We had set out in a rain of flowers to seek the death of heroes. The war was our dream of greatness, power and glory. It was a man's work, a duel on the fields whose flowers would be stained with blood. There is no lovelier death in the world... Anything rather than stay at home, anything to make one with the rest.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Dream #War #Hero

  • The political trend is always to be observed, partly as a spectacle, partly for one's own safety. The liberal is dissatisfied with regime; the anarch passes through their sequence - as inoffensively as possible - like a suite of rooms. This is the recipe for anyone who cares more about the substance of the world than its shadow - the philosopher, the artist, the believer.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Artist #Safety #Political

  • Liberalism is to freedom as anarchism is to anarchy.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Anarchy #Anarchism #Liberalism

  • The anarch knows the rules. He has studied them as a historian and goes along with them as a contemporary. Wherever possible, he plays his own game within their framework; this makes the fewest waves.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Games #Play #Wave

  • The anarch is oriented to facts, not ideas. He fights alone, as a free man, and would never dream of sacrificing himself to having one inadequacy supplant another and a new regime triumph over the old one. In this sense, he is closer to the philistine; the baker whose chief concern is to bake good bread; the peasant, who works his plow while armies march across his fields.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Dream #Army #Sacrifice

  • We do not escape our boundaries or our innermost being. We do not change. It is true we may be transformed, but we always walk within our boundaries, within the marked-off circle.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Circles #May #Boundaries

  • A work of art wastes away and becomes lustreless in surroundings where it has a price but not a value. It radiates only when surrounded by love. It is bound to wilt in a world where the rich have no time and the cultivated no money. But it never harmonizes with borrowed greatness.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Art #Greatness #World

  • Really, doesn´t everything make sense? There are, of course, things from which we more or less recover, although some of them are too harsh even for saints. But that is no reason to accuse God. Even if there are reasons to doubt him, the fact that he did not arrange the world like a well-ordered parlor is not one of them. It speaks rather in his favor. This used to be much better understood.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Doubt #Facts #Saint

  • Today only the person who no longer believes in a happy ending, only he who has consciously renounced it, is able to live. A happy century does not exist; but there are moments of happiness, and there is freedom in the moment.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Believe #Doe #Able

  • Although I am an anarch, I am not anti-authoritarian. Quite the opposite: I need authority, although I do not believe in it. My critical faculties are sharpened by the absence of the credibility that I ask for. As a historian, I know what can be offered.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Believe #Opposites #Needs

  • The special trait making me an anarch is that I live in a world which I ‘ultimately’ do not take seriously. This increases my freedom; I serve as a temporary volunteer
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Volunteer #Special #World

  • The partisan wants to change the law, the criminal break it; the anarch wants neither. He is not for or against the law. While not acknowledging the law, he does try to recognize it like the laws of nature, and he adjusts accordingly.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Law #Trying #Criminals

  • Freedom is based on the anarch’s awareness that he can kill himself. He carries this awareness around; it accompanies him like a shadow that he can conjure up. “A leap from this bridge will set me free.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Bridges #Shadow #Awareness

  • Seen politically, systems follow one another, each consuming the previous one. They live on ever-bequeathed and ever-disappointed hope, which never entirely fades. Its spark is all that survives, as it eats its way along the blasting fuse. For this spark, history is merely an occasion, never a goal.
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Goal #Sparks #Way

  • Habent sua fata libelli et balli [Books and bullets have their own destinies]
    -- Ernst Junger

    #Book #Destiny #Bullets