Thoughts on revenge a web search turned up…


“Hatred does not cease through hatred but through love alone they cease.”
The Buddha

“… men being partial to themselves, passion and revenge is very apt to carry them too far, and with too much heat…”
John Locke

“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.”
The Buddha

“An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.”

“For every minute you are angry you lose sixty seconds of happiness.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Hatred never ends through hatred. By non-hate alone does it end. This is an ancient truth.”
Dhammapada 5 (translated by Gil Fronsdal)

“Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.”

“When you get hurt, say, by an arrow, that is pain. The arrow hitting your arm, it hurts. Pain. However, there is a second arrow, which is your reaction to the arrow, the getting angry, the planning revenge, that is beyond pain, that is suffering.”
Buddhist teaching

“Revenge is a kind of wild justice, which the more a man’s nature runs to,
the more ought law to weed it out.”
Francis Bacon

“Revenge… is like a rolling stone, which, when a man hath forced up a hill, will return upon him with a greater violence, and break those bones whose sinews gave it motion.”
Albert Schweitzer

“Do not repay anyone evil for evil; be concerned for what is noble in sight of all.”
Romans 12:17

“It is a revenge the devil sometimes takes upon the virtuous, that he entraps them by the force of the very passion they have suppressed and think themselves superior to.
George Santayana”

“Revenge, at first though sweet, Bitter ere long back on itself recoils.”
John Milton

“Revenge is the naked idol of the worship of a semi-barbarous age.”
Percy Bysshe Shelley

“Revenge is barren of itself; itself is the dreadful food it feeds on; its delight is murder, and its saiety, despair.”
Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller

“Revenge is an inhuman word.”

“I choose not to give energy to the emotions of revenge, hatred or the desire to subjugate.”
Rosanne Cash

“Therein lies the defect of revenge: it’s all in the anticipation; the thing itself is a pain, not a pleasure; at least the pain is the biggest end of it.”
Mark Twain

“The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury.”
Marcus Aurelius

“A punishment that penalizes without forestalling is indeed called revenge.”
Albert Camus

“Revenge, we find, the abject pleasure of an abject mind.”

“Vengeance taken will often tear the heart and torment the conscience.”
Arthur Schopenhauer

“When you express your anger you think that you are getting anger out of your system, but that’s not true. When you express your anger, either verbally or with physical violence, you are feeding the seed of anger, and it becomes stronger in you.”
Thich Nhat Hanh

“Man must evolve for all human conflict, a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Through violence, you may ‘solve’ one problem, but you sow the seeds for another.”
Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama

“Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts.”
The Buddha

“A man that studieth revenge keeps his own wounds green.”
Francis Bacon

“Little, vicious minds abound with anger and revenge, and are incapable of feeling the pleasure of forgiving their enemies.”
Lord Chesterfield

“Malice sucks up the greatest part of its own venom, and poisons itself.”

“Anybody can become angry – that is easy; but to be angry with the right person, and to the right degree, and at the right time, and for the right purpose, and in the right way – that is not within everybody’s power and is not easy.”

“Revenge is not always sweet, once it is consummated we feel inferior to our victim.”
Emile M. Cioran

“Revenge only engenders violence, not clarity and true peace. I think liberation must come from within.”
Sandra Cisneros

“While you are meditating revenge, the devil is meditating a recruit.”
Francois de Malherbe

“Revenge is a dead thing, reaching out from the past to grasp you.”
Lois McMaster Bujold

“Grudges are for those who insist that they are owed something; forgiveness, however, is for those who are substantial enough to move on.”
Criss Jami

“War always reaches the depths of horror because of idiots who perpetuate terror from generation to generation under the pretext of vengeance.”
Guy Sajer

“But the hour of vengeance falls, and I love you.”
Pablo Neruda

“Besides, revenge without respect to the example and profit to come is a triumph, or glorying in the hurt of another, tending to no end (for the end is always somewhat to come); and glorying to no end is vain-glory, and contrary to reason; and to hurt without reason tendeth to the introduction of war, which is against the law of nature, and is commonly styled by the name of cruelty.”
Thomas Hobbes

“Ignore those that make you fearful and sad, that degrade you back towards disease and death.”

“Taking revenge is an extremely bad trait. A person should be accustomed to rise above his feelings about all worldly matters; for those who understand [the deeper purpose of the world] consider all these matters as vanity and emptiness, which are not worth seeking revenge for.”

“You shall not take revenge…”
Leviticus 19:18

“Treat those who are good with goodness, and also treat those who are not good with goodness. Thus goodness is attained.”
Lao Tzu


Sorry, no links or citations; it took a while just to dig them up.   Just something to ponder.  Perhaps I’ll address the matter it in my own words another day.


2 thoughts on “Thoughts on revenge a web search turned up…

    • I have no problem with your link. The issue of organized revenge is certainly part of this wider problem. No argument for state sanction for revenge, however carefully argued, is convincing. It all comes down to ‘we hate these people, so let’s take it out on them!’ No, if our ethics mean anything, any way we treat transgressors must be in keeping with our reason, or we might just as well move back into the jungle with the other animals.

      Liked by 1 person

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