On Passion

‘Without passion man is a mere latent force and possibility, like the flint which awaits the shock of the iron before it can give forth its spark.’
— Henri-Frédéric Amiel

‘I was on automatic pilot; ideas for gadgets kept coming, fed by a force of energy flowing through me and around me. I wasn’t really conscious of pausing to eat or sleep, I was caught up in a flurry of activity. I must have been experiencing the same sort or rapture of creation I imagine composers or poets get carried away by when they lose themselves in their work. I forgot about everything else to concentrate on what I was doing. I’d work eighteen-hour stretches and fall asleep in my clothes. Then I’d wake up in the middle of the night, brew a pot of tea, and start work again. I was tired, but work had become pure enjoyment.’
— Trevor Baylis

‘Feeling alone guides the mind.’
— Claude Bernard

‘I believe that all wisdom consists in caring immensely for a few right things, and not caring a straw about the rest.’
— John Buchan

‘Your work is to discover your work and then with all your heart to give yourself up to it.’
— Gautama Buddha

‘Experience shows that success is due less to ability than to zeal.’
— Sydney Charles Buxton

‘Without work, all life goes rotten. But when work is soulless, life stifles and dies.’
— Albert Camus

‘If you believe in an idea, you don’t own you, it owns you.’
— Raymond Chandler

‘What makes men of genius, or rather, what they make, is not new ideas, it is that idea—possessing them—that what has been said has still not been said enough.’
— Eugene Delacroix

‘The creative urge is the demon that will not accept anything second rate.’
— Agnes De Mille

‘The state of mind which enables a man to do work of this kind is akin to that of the religious worshiper or the lover; the daily effort comes from no deliberate intention or program, but straight from the heart.’
— Albert Einstein

‘I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.’
— Albert Einstein

‘Feeling and longing are the motive forces behind all human endeavour and human creations.’
— Albert Einstein

‘Passion, though a bad regulator, is a powerful spring.’
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

‘Men are not moved by things, but the views they take of them.’
— Epitectus

‘You must love your work as you love a mistress whom you want to glorify. Once you are possessed by the creative urge there is no room for any other drive or thought.’
— Carl Hauptman

‘Our energy is in proportion to the resistance it meets. We attempt nothing great but from a sense of the difficulties we have to encounter, we persevere in nothing great but from a pride in overcoming them.’
— William Hazlitt

‘Zeal will do more than knowledge.’
— William Hazlitt

‘It seems safe to say that significant discovery, really creative thinking, does not occur with regard to problems about which the thinker is lukewarm.’
— Mary Henle

‘If you care enough for the result, you will almost always attain it.’
— William James

‘Optimism is the father that leads to achievement.’
— Helen Keller

‘One can never consent to creep when one feels an impulse to soar.’
— Helen Keller

‘If a man hasn’t discovered something that he will die for, he isn’t fit to live.’
— Martin Luther King

‘In art, truth and reality begin when one no longer understands what one is doing or what one knows, and when there remains an energy that is all the stronger for being constrained, controlled and compressed.’
— Henri Matisse

‘An idealist is one who, on noticing that a rose smells better than a cabbage concludes it will also make a better soup.’
— H. L. Mencken

‘If you don’t invest very much, then defeat doesn’t hurt very much and winning is not very exciting.’
— Dick Vermeil

‘Ideas won’t keep. Something must be done about them. When the idea is new its custodians have fervour, live for it, and, if need be, die for it.’
— Alfred North Whitehead

‘The mind of an artist, in order to achieve the prodigious effort of freeing whole and entire the work that is in him, must be incandescent…there must be no obstacle in it, no foreign matter unconsumed.’
— Virginia Woolf

‘Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.’
— William Wordsworth

‘Innovation doesn’t happen until you want to do something badly enough.’
— Albert Yu