Many of Oscar Wilde's sayings are inspirational, or at least, thought provoking:
The only thing to do with good advice is pass it on. It is never any use to oneself.
What is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.
Whenever people agree with me I always feel I must be wrong.
I can resist anything but temptation.
The truth is rarely pure and never simple.
Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.
I am not young enough to know everything.
The one above, "We are all in the gutter but some of us are looking at the stars", which is actually a quote from one of his plays, came into my mind yesterday. This is a message of hope and of the possibility of something better. It is expanded in this passage from his letter De Profundis (from the depths) written in Reading Gaol:
When first I was put into prison some people advised me to try and forget who I was. It was ruinous advice. It is only by realising what I am that I have found comfort of any kind. Now I am advised by others to try on my release to forget that I have ever been in a prison at all. I know that would be equally fatal. It would mean that I would always be haunted by an intolerable sense of disgrace, and that those things that are meant for me as much as for anybody else – the beauty of the sun and moon, the pageant of the seasons, the music of daybreak and the silence of great nights, the rain falling through the leaves, or the dew creeping over the grass and making it silver – would all be tainted for me, and lose their healing power, and their power of communicating joy. To regret one's own experiences is to arrest one's own development. To deny one's own experiences is to put a lie into the lips of one's own life. It is no less than a denial of the soul.