Who’s the man that says that we’re all islands shouting lies to each other across seas of misunderstanding?
No human being should learn from another. Each individual should develop his own powers to the uttermost, not try to imitate those of someone else.
Man, the more he gains freedom in the sense of emerging from the original oneness with man and nature and the more he becomes an “individual,” has no choice but to unite himself with the world in the spontaneity of love and productive work or else to seek a kind of security by such ties with the world as destroy his freedom and the integrity of his individual self.
When an individual or a group of individuals is kept in a situation of inferiority, the fact is that he or they are inferior.
The liberty of the individual is no gift of civilization. It was greatest before there was any civilization, though then, it is true, it had for the most part no value, since the individual was scarcely in a position to defend it.[Die individuelle Freiheit ist kein Kulturgut. Sie war am größten vor jeder Kultur, allerdings damals meist ohne Wert, weil das Individuum kaum imstande war, sie zu verteidigen.]
The essence of the modern state is the union of the universal with the full freedom of the particular, and with the welfare of individuals.
Our species is the only creative species, and it has only one creative instrument, the individual mind and spirit of a man. Nothing was ever created by two men. There are no good collaborations, whether in music, in art, in poetry, in mathematics, in philosophy. Once the miracle of creation has taken place, the group can build and extend it, but the group never invents anything. The preciousness lies in the lonely mind of a man.
Only a few individuals succeed in throwing off mythology in a time of a certain intellectual supremacy – the mass never frees itself.[Es gelingt nur wenig Individuen, die Mythologie in der Epoche eines gewissen intellektuellen Übermutes abzustreifen, die Masse befreit sich nie.]
It is not our purpose to become each other; it is to recognize each other, to learn to see the other and honor him for what he is: each the other’s opposite and complement.