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Nuria Amat

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Identity is only productive when one doesn't think about it. There's nothing more sterile for a person or a country than to be never-endingly affirming itself, because one always affirms oneself by denying the other.

Nuria Amat

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God, Most High, is the very one who Himself affirms His unity by the tongue of whatever of His creatures He wishes. If He Himself affirms His unity by my tongue, it is He and His affair. Otherwise, brother, I have nothing to do with affirming God's Unity.


From the very beginning, existentialism defined itself as a philosophy of ambiguity. It was by affirming the irreducible character of ambiguity that Kierkegaard opposed himself to Hegel, and it is by ambiguity that, in our own generation, Sartre, in Being and Nothingness, fundamentally defined man, that being whose being is not to be, that subjectivity which realizes itself only as a presence in the world, that engaged freedom, that surging of the for-oneself which is immediately given for others. But it is also claimed that existentialism is a philosophy of the absurd and of despair. It encloses man in a sterile anguish, in an empty subjectivity. It is incapable of furnishing him with any principle for making choices. Let him do as he pleases. In any case, the game is lost. Does not Sartre declare, in effect, that man is a “useless passion,” that he tries in vain to realize the synthesis of the for-oneself and the in-oneself, to make himself God? It is true. But it is also true that the most optimistic ethics have all begun by emphasizing the element of failure involved in the condition of man; without failure, no ethics; for a being who, from the very start, would be an exact co-incidence with himself, in a perfect plenitude, the notion of having-to-be would have no meaning. One does not offer an ethics to a God. It is impossible to propose any to man if one defines him as nature, as something given. The so-called psychological or empirical ethics manage to establish themselves only by introducing surreptitiously some flaw within the manthing which they have first defined.

Simone De Beauvoir

The way we work, the way we talk, the way we watch television or walk down the street, even the way we f**k, or maybe that especially—each of those is part of the problem of identity. We can’t do any of those things authentically until we find out who we really are and be that person, inside and out, instead of the person other people want us to be. Usually those other people, if they want us to be something we aren’t, are using us as a laboratory for working out their own identity problems.

Thomas M. Disch

A person with belief never grovels before anyone, whining and whimpering that it's all too much, that he lacks support, that he is being treated unfairly. Instead, such a person tackes problems head on and then affirms, 'As a child of God, I am greater than anything that can happen to me.'

APJ Abdul Kalam
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