Our existence is simple and yet, it is complicated. Life’s truths are often recognized when reading writings and quotes by Ernest Hemingway. These statements can be profound.

The duties of life can sometimes hide the big picture. What is the big picture? Well, seeing the overall important things in life can be considered seeing in grand terms. Otherwise going a bit deeper without over analyzing things brings answers and revelations.

Ernest Hemingway’s quotes are some of the best statements which describe the big picture of life.

Ernest Hemingway quotes that help you look deeper

While there are many answers to life’s problems and issues, there are greater realizations if you look deeper.

Quotes by Ernest Hemingway aren’t designed to make you smile because the weather is great. They are more likely to make you smile from the realization that nothing is perfect. Here are a few examples of real wisdom and revelation.

1. “All things truly wicked start from innocence”

The next time someone does something hateful to you, pause before you react. Ask yourself one important question before vengeance takes over…”Why did they do this to me?” Now, it might not be easy to determine the reason why someone wrongs you, but you can rest assured of one thing about them. They were once innocent and kind.

Most everyone on this planet started life in innocent wonder, even the most hated killers and rapists. Now, there is a time for punishment and a time for justice, but not without understanding the source of the fault.

This quote by Ernest Hemingway helps us understand that wicked things also start from innocent places and that everything has a source, some of which might surprise you.

2. “Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know”

This is undoubtedly one of the most profound quotes Ernest Hemingway wrote.

It’s so hard to be happy when you know the truth about the world. Trust me, I was cursed with the knowledge that I despise sometimes. When you look at the real things that people do, you become discouraged. The more intelligent you are, the less likely these people can hide those things they do.

Being truly happy while being intelligent is like trying to ignore that grass is green and the sun is hot. It’s like asking someone to turn a blind eye to the suffering of the world and go out and enjoy themselves.

While being happy and intelligent is possible, it’s harder for most people. For an intelligent person, happiness is fleeting. The sooner we understand this, the quicker we can try and find as much happiness as possible in the rubble of our existence.

3. “You are so brave and quiet. I forget you are suffering”

Those who suffer do not always cry out in pain. Oh no, some of the people who suffer the most make no sound at all. They are quiet, they plaster a smile upon their faces, and they go out and help others.

The truth is, some of the most broken individuals are never detected. They hide their torment behind layers of what society wishes to see. Society thus forgets their pain.

4. “There’s nothing noble in being superior to your fellow men. True nobility is being superior to your former self”

Respect ends when you become guilty of thinking too highly of yourself. This is one of the deepest quotes by Ernest Hemingway and it teaches us that true respect and nobility can be seen in those who are always striving to better themselves day after day. It’s about humility and being able to take responsibility for your faults and weakness.

Here’s a scary thought. If you aren’t able to admit your weaknesses, and you do have many of them by the way, you will never grow in character.

While shame may hold you to the illusion that you are superior, it also halts any ability or chance for you to be a better person. You will be forever stuck in inadequacy if you feel too proud in your existence and abilities.

5. “When people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen.”

You might think you’re listening, but friend, I must tell you, you’re not. Well, at least most of you don’t know how to really listen, and I will tell you why.

When we talk to another person, we realize that we’re not truly listening when we’re formulating responses while they are still talking. We talk, and then we block out their words with our passion for forming interesting statements. I know this to be true because this is one area in which I struggle.

To listen completely, you must empty your mind of all thoughts except for the influx of their words at the given moment. Hear what they are saying, roll it over in your mind and taste it. This shows them that you do really care about what they have to say. Then, amazingly enough, you will be able to answer effectively.

6. “Be fully in the moment, open yourself to the powerful energies dancing around you”

This quote by Ernest Hemingway teaches us to stop. To stop what, you might ask. Well, we should stop thinking about tomorrow and definitely lay down the burdens of yesterday, and we should be here…just here, now.

Being completely and utterly in this moment helps us feel the amazing surroundings and the energies that make us who we are. We can understand much better if we appreciate every waking second of every day.

Yes, we should make plans and yes, we can sometimes reminisce, but the present has more hold on our minds and bodies, and we must appreciate its power.

7. “You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another”

All my life, I’ve had this urge to move to a different place, usually when I’ve been living somewhere for a really long time. It was usually after some breakup or death, and I felt a need to start over. And I did this a few times during life, I moved and started over. Now, I realize that I was running from myself. I also realized that many of my problems were of my own doing.

No matter how far you go or how often you move, you will never get away. Instead of moving, you should do more introspection and discover what has you stuck in life. You’re not hopeless, you’re just a little confused. Sometimes, in all honesty, your greatest enemy is yourself, and you should stand firm and face this.

Quotes are more powerful than you think

Did you know that a single quote can change the way you view the entire day, maybe even longer? It’s true. When life cannot afford the answers you seek, simple words can tap into those hungry places inside. I hope you enjoyed these quotes by Ernest Hemingway and I also hope they have left an impression on you today.

What are your favorite quotes by Ernest Hemingway?


  1. https://www.brainyquote.com
  2. https://allthatsinteresting.com
  3. Image ‘American Author Ernest Hemingway aboard his Yacht around 1950′ via WikiCommons

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This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. jona

    Don’t problem the problem or the problem will problem will problem you.

    1. Sherrie

      And that could be a problem….lol

  2. Terencio N Jamotillo Jr

    GREAT insight into some of the quotes from Ernest Hemingway. Especially enjoyed your interpretation and feelings about some of his quotes. Big fan of some of his literary classics , but in movie form. I use to be a big reader in books, but now just stuff on the web. Just retired and have a whole stack of books that I should have read. Thanks very much for the inspiration and rekindling of a lost love.

    1. Sherrie Hurd, A.A.

      And, thank you for reading, Terencio.

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