Famous Quotes & Sayings

Anais Nin Quotes & Sayings

Enjoy the top 100 famous quotes, sayings and quotations by Anais Nin.

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Anais Nin Quotes 2245201

I am a failure as a writer. The publishers won't publish me, the bookshops won't carry my books, the critics won't write about me. I am excluded from all anthologies, and completely ignored. — Anais Nin

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I want to fall in love in such a way that the mere sight of a man, even a block away from me, will shake and pierce me, will weaken me, and make me tremble and soften and melt. — Anais Nin

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I have always been tormented by the image of multiplicity of selves. Some days I call it richness, and other days I see it as a disease, a proliferation as dangerous as cancer. My first concept about people around me was that all of them were coordinated into a WHOLE, whereas I was made up of multiple selves, of fragments. I know that I was upset as a child to discover that we had only one life. It seems to me that I wanted to compensate for this by multiplying experience. Or perhaps it always seems like this when you follow all your impulses and they take you in different directions. In any case, when I was happy, always at the beginning of a love, euphoric, I felt I was gifted for living many lives fully. It was only when I was in trouble, lost in a maze, stifled by complications and paradoxes that I was haunted or that I spoke of my "madness," but I meant the madness of the poets. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 1108509

I want to love you wildly. I don't want words, but inarticulate cries, meaningless, from the bottom of my most primitive being, that flow from my belly like honey. A piercing joy, that leaves me empty, conquered, silenced. — Anais Nin

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His body smelled like a precious-wood forest; his hair, like sandalwood, his skin, like cedar. It was as if he had always lived among trees and plants. — Anais Nin

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Life is what we make it, always has been, always will be ... including our perception. Of it — Anais Nin

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My life is slowed up by thought and the need to understand what I am living. — Anais Nin

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The night surrounded me, a photograph unglued from its frame. The lining of a coat ripped open like the two shells of an oyster. The day and the night unglued, and I falling in between not knowing on which layer I was resting, whether it was the cold grey upper leaf of dawn or the dark layer of night. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 1699512

Experience teaches acceptance of the imperfect as life. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 793878

The role of the writer is not to say what we can all say, but what we are unable to say. Most of the writing today which is called fiction contains such a poverty of language, such triteness, that it is a shrunken, diminished world we enter, poorer and more formless than the poorest cripple deprived of ears and eyes and tongue. The writer's responsibility is to increase, develop our senses, expand our vision, heighten our awareness and enrich our articulateness. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 1899604

New York seems conducted by jazz, animated by it. It is essentially a city of rhythm. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 864432

Man can never know the loneliness a woman knows. Man lies in the woman's womb only to gather strength, he nourishes himself from this fusion, and then he rises and goes into the world, into his work, into battle, into art. He is not lonely. He is busy. The memory of the swim in amniotic fluid gives him energy, completion. Woman may be busy too, but she feels empty. Sensuality for her is not only a wave of pleasure in which she is bathed, and a charge of electric joy at contact with another. When man lies in her womb, she is fulfilled, each act of love a taking of man within her, an act of birth and rebirth, of child rearing and man bearing. Man lies in her womb and is reborn each time anew with a desire to act, to be. But for woman, the climax is not in the birth, but in the moment man rests inside of her. — Anais Nin

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Tropical nights are hammocks for lovers. — Anais Nin

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[in the]..curious way that my idealism has been mixed with my fatalism, so that I can possess the soul of a dreamer and that of a cynic at the same time ... I possess a power of magic ... [to] destroy the balance of a well-designed destiny with my diabolical mind ... — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 1992689

Dr Allendy said that it was necessary to become equal to life, that the romantic was defeated by life, really died of it, whether by tuberculosis in the old days, or by neurosis today. I had never thought before of the connection between neurosis and romanticism. Wanting the impossible? Dying when unable to reach it? Not wanting to compromise? — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 684407

I have seen romanticism outlast the realistic. I have seen men forget the beautiful women they have possessed, forget the prostitutes, and remember the first woman they idolized, the woman they could never have. The woman who aroused them romantically holds them. — Anais Nin

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Motherhood is a vocation like any other. It should be freely chosen, not imposed upon woman. — Anais Nin

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I am made only for passion; it is the temperature of love that I cannot endure. I am afraid, and I think it is death- everything but passion seems like death to me. Only in fever do I feel life. — Anais Nin

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These rituals Rango could not sustain, for he could not maintain the effort to arrive on time since his lifelong habit had created the opposite habit: to elude, to avoid, to disappoint every expectation of others, every commitment, every promise, every crystallization. — Anais Nin

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Solitude may rust your words. — Anais Nin

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When she closed her eyes she felt he had many hands, which touched her everywhere, and many mouths, which passed so swiftly over her, and with a wolflike sharpness, his teeth sank into her fleshiest parts. Naked now, he lay his full length over her. She enjoyed his weight on her, enjoyed being crushed under his body. She wanted him soldered to her, from mouth to feet. Shivers passed through her body. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 887294

She is bizarre, fantastic, nervous, like someone in a high fever. Her beauty drowned me. As I sat before her, I felt I would do anything she asked of me. Henry suddenly faded. She was color and brilliance and strangeness. By the end of the evening I had extricated myself from her power. She killed my admiration by her talk. Her talk. The enormous ego, false, weak, posturing. She — Anais Nin

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Jazz is the expression of America's romantic self, its sensual potency, its lyrical force. — Anais Nin

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We are like sculptors, constantly carving out of others the image we long for, need, love or desire, often against reality, against their benefit, and always, in the end, a disappointment, because it does not fit them. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 1615619

The writer is the duelist who never fights at the stated hour, who gathers up an insult, like another curious object, a collector's item, spreads it out on his desk later, and then engages in a duel with it verbally. Some people call it weakness. I call it postponement. What is weakness in the man becomes a quality in the writer. For he preserves, collects what will explode later in his work. That is why the writer is the loneliest man in the world; because he lives, fights, dies, is reborn always alone; all his roles are played behind a curtain. In life he is an incongruous figure. — Anais Nin

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The unconscious can become destructive if it is disregarded and thwarted. — Anais Nin

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I believe one writes because one has to create a world in which one can live. — Anais Nin

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what she hated above all was that most men in her presence wilted, grew small and feeble. only the timid ones approached her, as if to seek her strength. — Anais Nin

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I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living. — Anais Nin

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The poet is one who is able to keep the fresh vision of the child alive. — Anais Nin

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What is the greatest need of human beings? What is it they seek from me always? Intimacy. I listen with all my being, I am completely interested. I seek momentarily a full communion of eyes, feelings, thoughts. — Anais Nin

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When others asked the truth of me, I was convinced it was not the truth they wanted, but an illusion they could bear to live with. — Anais Nin

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Of course, you'll defend Jay," says Rango, He was a part of your former life, of your former values. I will never be able to alter that. I want you to think as I do."
"But Rango, you couldn't respect someone who surrendered an opinion merely to please you . It would be hypocrisy. — Anais Nin

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The inner hatreds of men are now projected outside. There are fights in the streets. Revolutions in France, they say. Men did not seek to resolve their own personal revolutions, so now they act them out collectively. — Anais Nin

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I am a woman first of all. At the core of my work was a journal written for the father I lost, loved and wanted to keep. I am personal. I am essentially human, not intellectual. I do not understand abstract act. Only art born of love, passion, pain. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 135295

You are so terribly nimble, so clever. I distrust your cleverness. You make a wonderful pattern, everything is in its place, it looks convincingly clear, too clear. And meanwhile, where are you? Not on the clear surface of your ideas, but you have already sunk deeper, into darker regions, so that one only thinks one has been given all your thoughts, one only imagines you have emptied yourself in that clarity. But there are layers and layers
you're bottomless, unfathomable. Your clearness is deceptive. You are the thinker who arouses most confusion in me, most doubt, most disturbance. — Anais Nin

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The richest source of creation is feeling, followed by a vision of its meaning. — Anais Nin

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We're journeying constantly, but there is always a machine and books, and your body is always close to me and the look in your eyes never changes. People are saying we will be miserable, we will regret, but we are happy, we are laughing always, we are singing. We are talking Spanish and French and — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 253386

To capture the drama of the unconscious, one had to start with the key, and the key was the dream. But the novelist's task was to pursue this dream, to unravel its meaning; the goal was to reach the relation of dream to life; the suspense was in finding this which led to a deeper significance of our acts. — Anais Nin

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What makes some butterflies have such beautiful colors on their wings, and others not?" "The plain ones were born of parents who didn't know how to paint. — Anais Nin

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He, who had done more than any human being to draw her out of the caves of her secret, folded life, now threw her down into deeper recesses of fear and doubt. The fall was greater than she had ever known, because she had ventured so far into emotion and had abandoned herself to it. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 325495

Love reduces the complexity of living. It amazes me that when Henry walks towards the cafe table where I wait for him, or opens the gate to our house, the sight of him is sufficient to exult me. No letter from anyone, even in praise of my book, can stir me as much as a note from him. — Anais Nin

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We speak of the masculine and the feminine, but they are the wrong labels. It is really more a matter of poetry versus intellectualization. — Anais Nin

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Sex loses all its power and magic when it becomes explicit, mechanical, overdone, when it becomes a mechanistic obsession. It becomes a bore. You have taught us more than anyone I know how wrong it is not to mix it with emotion, hunger, desire, lust, whims, caprices, personal ties, deeper relationships that change its color, flavor, rhythms, intensities. — Anais Nin

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You are the only woman who ever answered the demands of my imagination. — Anais Nin

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He sat before a note book of blank pages, saying: I swallow my own words. I chew and chew everything until it deteriorates. Every thought or impulse I have is chewed into nothingness. I want to capture all my thoughts at once, but they run in all directions. If I could do this I would be capturing the nimblest of minds, like a shoal of minnows. I would reveal innocence and duplicity, generosity and calculation, fear and cowardice and courage. I want to tell the whole truth, but I cannot tell the whole truth because I would have to write four pages at once, like four columns simultaneously, four pages to the present one, and so I do not write at all. I would have to write backwards, retrace my steps constantly to catch the echoes and overtones. — Anais Nin

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the cape held within its folds something of what she imagined was a quality possessed exclusively by man: some dash, some audacity, some swagger of freedom denied to woman — Anais Nin

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The failures are not due to any injustice, but to an inner defect. It is always caused by the person himself. Yes, I know, you think you are doing an act of justice. But they will only suck you dry, wear out your energy, nourish themselves on your ideas. After being the most compassionate man in the world, I say to you today: Let the weak ones die, let them commit suicide. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 528556

The truth is that this is the only way I can live: in two directions. I need two lives. I am two beings. When I return to Hugo in the evening, to the peace and warmth of the house, I return with deep contentment, as if this was the only condition for me. I bring home to Hugo a whole woman, freed of all 'possessed' fevers, cured of the poison of restlessness and curiosity which used to threaten our marriage, cured through action. Our love lives, because I live. I sustain and feed it. I am loyal to it, in my own way, which cannot be his way. If he ever reads these lines, he must believe me. I am writing calmly, lucidly while waiting for him to come home, as one waits for the chosen lover, the eternal one. — Anais Nin

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He had a mania for washing and disinfecting himself ... For him the only danger came from the microbes that attacked the body. He had not studied the microbe of conscience which eats into the soul. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 605222

It is my secrecy which makes you unhappy, my evasions, my silences. And so I have found a solution. Whenever you get desperate with my mysteries, my ambiguities, here is a set of Chinese puzzle boxes. You have always said that I was myself a Chinese puzzle box. When you are in the mood and I baffle your love of confidences, your love of openness, your love of sharing experiences, then open one of the boxes. And in it you will find a story, a story about me and my life. Do you like this idea? Do you think it will help us to live together? — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 654796

I had been struck by the analogy between neurosis and romanticism. Romanticism was truly a parallel to neurosis. It demanded of reality an illusory world, love, an absolute which it could never obtain, and thus destroyed itself by the dream. — Anais Nin

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There are two ways to reach me: by way of kisses or by way of the imagination. But there is a hierarchy: the kisses alone don't work. — Anais Nin

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Woman does not forget she needs the fecundator, she does not forget that everything that is born of her is planted in her. — Anais Nin

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Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 761294

And silence. She liked the silence most of all. The silence in which the body, senses, the instincts, are more alert, more powerful, more sensitized, live a more richly perfumed and intoxication life, instead of transmuting into thoughts, words, into exquisite abstractions, mathematics of emotion in place of violent impact, the volcanic eruptions of fever, lust and delight. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 791528

Awareness hurts. Relationships hurts. Life hurts. But to float, to drift, to live in the dream does not hurt. — Anais Nin

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America is the greatest humiliator in existence. It is always cultivating the power you get from humiliating others. — Anais Nin

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-You know I've always wanted to break the molds which life forms around one if one lets them.
-I want to trespass boundaries, erase all identifications, anything which fixes one permanently into one mold, one place, without hope of change. — Anais Nin

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When I first met him, he did not care if a friend did not fit into his world, because at that time his world had not been born yet. — Anais Nin

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Physical experiences, lacking the joys of love, depend on twists and perversions of pleasure. Abnormal pleasures kill the taste for normal ones. — Anais Nin

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The fascination exerted by one human being over another is not what he emits of his personality at the present instant of encounter but a summation of his entire being which gives off this powerful drug capturing the fancy and attachment. — Anais Nin

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The earth is heavy and opaque without dreams. — Anais Nin

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Strange, isn't it, that no chemical will give a human being the iridescence that illusions have given them? Give me your hat. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 983836

I had a feeling that Pandora's box contained the mysteries of woman's sensuality, so different from a man's and for which man's language was so inadequate. The language of sex had yet to be invented. The language of the senses was yet to be explored. — Anais Nin

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Secrets. Need to disguise. The novel was born of this. — Anais Nin

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To think of him in the middle of the day lifts me out of ordinary living. — Anais Nin

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The important task of literature is to free man, not to censor him, and that is why Puritanism was the most destructive and evil force which ever oppressed people and their literature: it created hypocrisy, perversion, fears, sterility. — Anais Nin

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I did not feel drawn to huxley. He was beautiful physically but again without vibrations or sensory antennae ... and I had a painful impression of a psychic blindness. With all his science and knowledge, in the mystic world he blundered. — Anais Nin

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Keeping a Diary all my life helped me to discover some basic elements essential to the vitality of writing. — Anais Nin

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When one is pretending, the entire body revolts. — Anais Nin

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I know no joy as great as a moment of rushing into a new love, no ecstasy like that of a new love. — Anais Nin

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I cannot live without love. Love is at the root of my being. — Anais Nin

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In my childhood diary I wrote: I have decided that it is better not to love anyone, because when you love people, then you have to be separated from them, and that hurts too much. — Anais Nin

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I am losing my great, dissolving, disintegrating pity for others, in which I saw deflected the compassion I wanted for myself. I no longer give compassion, which means I no longer need to receive it. — Anais Nin

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When we blindly adopt a religion, a political system, a literary dogma, we become automatons. We cease to grow. — Anais Nin

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Do you have regrets that we were so overwhelmed? Do you ever wish to live those hours over again and differently, with more confidence. — Anais Nin

Anais Nin Quotes 1386330

I feel that from the very beginning life played a terrible conjurer's trick on me. I lost faith in it. It seems to me that every moment now it is playing tricks on me. So that when I hear love I am not sure it is love, and when I hear gaiety I am not sure it is gaiety, and when I have eaten and loved and I am all warm from wine, I am not sure it is either love or food or wine, but a strange trick being played on me, an illusion, slippery and baffling and malicious, and a magician hangs behind me watching the ecstasy I feel at the things which happen so that I know deep down it is all fluid and escaping and may vanish at any moment. Don't forget to write me a letter and tell me I was here, and I saw you, and loved you, and ate with you. It is all so evanescent and I love it so much, I love it as you love the change in the days. — Anais Nin

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You live out the confusions until they become clear. — Anais Nin

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Idealism is the death of the body and the imagination. All but freedom, utter freedom, is death — Anais Nin

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One handles truths like dynamite. — Anais Nin

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Women always think that when they have my shoes, my dress my hairdresser, my make-up, it will work the same way. They do not conceive of the witchcraft that is needed. They do not know that I am not beautiful but that I only appear to be at certain moments. — Anais Nin

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It was while helping others to be free that I gained my own freedom. — Anais Nin

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Willingness to explore everything is a sign of strength. The weak ones have prejudices. Prejudices are a protection. — Anais Nin

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It is in the movements of emotional crisis that human beings reveal themselves most accurately. — Anais Nin

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He does not need opium. He has the gift of reverie. — Anais Nin

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Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born. — Anais Nin

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She is suspicious of words. She lives by her senses, by her intuition. We don't have a language for the senses. Feelings are images, sensations are like musical sounds. How are you going to tell about them? — Anais Nin

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Death from disillusion is not instantaneous, and there are no mercy killers for the disillusioned. — Anais Nin

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What is love but acceptance of the other, whatever he is. — Anais Nin

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Many couples, many people, are not living with real human beings, but with their ghosts. Who has not followed for years the spell of a particular tone of voice, from voice to voice, as the fetishist follows a beautiful foot, scarcely seeing the woman herself? A voice, a mouth, an eye, all stemming from the original fountain of our first desire, directing it, enslaving us, until we choose to unravel the fatal web and free ourselves. — Anais Nin

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Life, religion and art all converge in Bali. They have no word in their language for 'artist' or 'art.' Everyone is an artist. — Anais Nin

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Dreams pass into the reality of action. From the actions stems the dream again; and this interdependence produces the highest form of living. — Anais Nin

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The inner and poetic illumination of his life came from me. — Anais Nin

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The living out in excess kills the imagination and the intensity, — Anais Nin

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I always have difficulty with people who are not openly warm, expressive. I need a certain sign, a certain invitation. — Anais Nin

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The personal life deeply lived always expands into truths beyond itself. — Anais Nin

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Life is truly known only to those who suffer, lose, endure adversity, & stumble from defeat to defeat. — Anais Nin

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When we walked together through the streets, bodies close together, arm in arm, hands locked, I could not talk. We were walking over the world, over reality, into ecstasy. When she smelled my handkerchief, she inhaled me. When I clothed her beauty, I possessed her. — Anais Nin

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I have never been able to talk as I think, to anyone. With most people you can only talk about ideas, not the channel through these ideas pass, the atmosphere in which they bathe, the subtle essence which escapes as one clothes them. Most of the time, I don't feel like talking about ideas anyway. I am more interested in sensations. — Anais Nin