Philosophers / Thinkers

37 Wisest Cornel West Quotes About Life (LOVE)

Top 10 Most Famous Cornel West Quotes (BEST)

“The country is in deep trouble. We’ve forgotten that a rich life consists fundamentally of serving others, trying to leave the world a little better than you found it. We need the courage to question the powers that be, the courage to be impatient with evil and patient with people, the courage to fight for social justice. In many instances we will be stepping out on nothing, and just hoping to land on something. But that’s the struggle. To live is to wrestle with despair, yet never allow despair to have the last word.”

Cornel West
We have to recognise that there cannot be relationships unless there is commitment, unless there is loyalty, unless there is love, patience, persistence.
We have to recognise that there cannot be relationships unless there is commitment, unless there is loyalty, unless there is love, patience, persistence.
I feel as if I have been blessed to undergo a transformation from 'gangster' to 'redeemed sinner with gangster proclivities.'
I feel as if I have been blessed to undergo a transformation from ‘gangster’ to ‘redeemed sinner with gangster proclivities.’
Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public.
Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public.
I take my fundamental cue from John Coltrane that says there must be a priority of integrity, honesty, decency, and mastery of craft.
I take my fundamental cue from John Coltrane that says there must be a priority of integrity, honesty, decency, and mastery of craft.

Hope and optimism are different. Optimism tends to be based on the notion that there’s enough evidence out there to believe things are gonna be better, much more rational, deeply secular, whereas hope looks at the evidence and says, ‘It doesn’t look good at all. Doesn’t look good at all. Gonna go beyond the evidence to create new possibilities based on visions that become contagious to allow people to engage in heroic actions always against the odds, no guarantee whatsoever.’ That’s hope. I’m a prisoner of hope, though. Gonna die a prisoner of hope.”

Cornel West
The greatest gift you can give someone is the gift of inspiration.
The greatest gift you can give someone is the gift of inspiration.
There is a price to pay for speaking the truth. There is a bigger price for living a lie.
There is a price to pay for speaking the truth. There is a bigger price for living a lie.
You must let suffering speak, if you want to hear the truth.
You must let suffering speak, if you want to hear the truth.
You can't lead the people if you don't love the people. You can't save the people if you don't serve the people.
You can’t lead the people if you don’t love the people. You can’t save the people if you don’t serve the people.

9 Wise Cornel West Quotes that Will Make You Think (WISDOM)

“You have to have a habitual vision of greatness … you have to believe in fact that you will refuse to settle for mediocrity. You won’t confuse your financial security with your personal integrity, you won’t confuse your success with your greatness or your prosperity with your magnanimity… believe in fact that living is connected to giving.”

Cornel West
I have tried to be a man of letters in love with ideas in order to be a wiser and more loving person, hoping to leave the world just a little better than I found it.
I have tried to be a man of letters in love with ideas in order to be a wiser and more loving person, hoping to leave the world just a little better than I found it.
Too many young folk have addiction to superficial things and not enough conviction for substantial things like justice, truth and love.
Too many young folk have addiction to superficial things and not enough conviction for substantial things like justice, truth and love.
None of us alone can save the nation or the world. But each of us can make a positive difference if we commit ourselves to do so.
None of us alone can save the nation or the world. But each of us can make a positive difference if we commit ourselves to do so.

“I tend to be one who just speaks from my soul, and so what comes out sometimes is rather harsh. In that sense, I’m very much a part of the tradition of a Frederick Douglass or a Malcolm X who used hyperbolic language at times to bring attention to the state of emergency.”

Cornel West
In a democracy the poor will have more power than the rich, because there are more of them, and the will of the majority is supreme.
In a democracy the poor will have more power than the rich, because there are more of them, and the will of the majority is supreme.
We have to be militants for kindness, subversive for sweetness and radicals for tenderness.
We have to be militants for kindness, subversive for sweetness and radicals for tenderness.
Clever gimmicks of mass distraction yield a cheap soulcraft of addicted and self-medicated narcissists.
Clever gimmicks of mass distraction yield a cheap soulcraft of addicted and self-medicated narcissists.
If you view life as a gold rush, you're going to end up worshiping a golden calf. And when you call for help, and that golden calf can't respond, you go under.
If you view life as a gold rush, you’re going to end up worshiping a golden calf. And when you call for help, and that golden calf can’t respond, you go under.

5 Cornel West Quotes on Courage

Empathy is not simply a matter of trying to imagine what others are going through, but having the will to muster enough courage to do something about it. In a way, empathy is predicated upon hope.”

Cornel West
It takes tremendous discipline, takes tremendous courage, to think for yourself, to examine yourself.
It takes tremendous discipline, takes tremendous courage, to think for yourself, to examine yourself.
Courage is being true to yourself, true to a sense of integrity.
Courage is being true to yourself, true to a sense of integrity.
The only countervailing force against organized money at the top, is organized people at the bottom.
The only countervailing force against organized money at the top, is organized people at the bottom.
There is something about boldness and fearlessness and being free enough to speak what is on one's mind that warrants freedom.
There is something about boldness and fearlessness and being free enough to speak what is on one’s mind that warrants freedom.

10 Inspirational Cornel West Quotes About Life

Music at its best… is the grand archeology into and transfiguration of our guttural cry, the great human effort to grasp in time our deepest passions and yearnings as prisoners of time. Profound music leads us – beyond language – to the dark roots of our scream and the celestial heights of our silence. ”

Cornel West
We are who we are because somebody loved us.
We are who we are because somebody loved us.
I cannot be an optimist but I am a prisoner of hope.
I cannot be an optimist but I am a prisoner of hope.
Of course, the aim of a constitutional democracy is to safeguard the rights of the minority and avoid the tyranny of the majority.
Of course, the aim of a constitutional democracy is to safeguard the rights of the minority and avoid the tyranny of the majority.
You've got to be a thermostat rather than a thermometer. A thermostat shapes the climate of opinion; a thermometer just reflects it.
You’ve got to be a thermostat rather than a thermometer. A thermostat shapes the climate of opinion; a thermometer just reflects it.
When ordinary people wake up, elites begin to tremble in their boots.
When ordinary people wake up, elites begin to tremble in their boots.
To live is to wrestle with despair, yet never allow despair to have the last word.
To live is to wrestle with despair, yet never allow despair to have the last word.
Martin Luther King Jr. was not just a man of peace. He was a radical pacifist, and so he was against war across the board.
Martin Luther King Jr. was not just a man of peace. He was a radical pacifist, and so he was against war across the board.
And when I talk about love, I'm talking about something that's great, though, brother. I'm talking about something that will sustain you.
And when I talk about love, I’m talking about something that’s great, though, brother. I’m talking about something that will sustain you.
Fire really means a certain kind of burning in the soul that one can no longer tolerate when one is pushed against a wall.
Fire really means a certain kind of burning in the soul that one can no longer tolerate when one is pushed against a wall.

3 Cornel West Quotes About Being a Christian

“To be a Christian is to live dangerously, honestly, freely – to step in the name of love as if you may land on nothing, yet to keep on stepping because the something that sustains you no empire can give you and no empire can take away.”

Cornel West
If the Kingdom of God is in you, you should leave a little bit of heaven wherever you go.
If the Kingdom of God is in you, you should leave a little bit of heaven wherever you go.

“I have nothing against rich brothers and sisters. Pray for ’em every day. But callousness and indifference, greed and avarice is something that’s shot through all of us.”

Cornel West

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