George William Russell (Æ)

Submitted by admin on Tue, 09/20/2016 - 14:28

painting of RussellQuotes

  • Our hearts are drunk with a beauty our eyes could never see.
  • Seek on earth what you have found in heaven.
  • Ah, to think how thin the veil that lies
    Between the pain of hell and Paradise
  • Any relations in a social order will endure, if there is infused into them some of that spirit of human sympathy which qualifies life for immortality.
  • The world can only be free when men are content in themselves and each draws from his own fountain.
  • The wind from the Kingdom of Heaven has blown all over the world, and shall blow for centuries yet.
  • Twilight, a timid, fawn, went glimmering by, and Night, the dark-blue hunter, followed fast.
  • When steam first began to pump and wheels go round at so many revolutions per minute, what are called business habits were intended to make the life of man run in harmony with the steam engine, and his movement rival the train in punctuality.
  • Love and hate have a magical transforming power. They are the great soul changers. We grow through their exercise into the likeness of what we contemplate.
  • It is true the orator may make a myriad replica of his own passion out of those who listen to him. But that does not prove he is right or they are not fools.
  • By intensity of hatred, nations create in themselves the character that they imagine in their enemies. Hence it comes that all passionate conflicts result in an interchange of characteristics. We might say with truth, those who hate open a door by which their enemies enter and make their own the secret places of the heart.
  • We dwell in the house of the body, but its perfection and intricate life are the work of a wisdom which never relaxes dominion over a single cell.
  • We may fight against what is wrong, but if we allow ourselves to hate, that is to insure our spiritual defeat and our likeness to what we hate.
  • After the spiritual powers, there is no thing in the world more unconquerable than the spirit of nationality. The spirit of nationality in Ireland will persist even though the mightiest of material powers be its neighbor.
  • We have control over the work of our hands, but little over the working of the soul. But yet we must yield to it, for without it we have nothing.
  • Nothing exasperates the spirit in man more than power which seems unconquerable and which makes impotent all protest.


George William Russell (born Lurgan, Co. Armagh 10 April 1867 – 17 July 1935) wrote with the pseudonym Æ (sometimes written AE or A.E.), was an Irish writer, editor, critic, poet, artistic painter and Irish nationalist. He was also a writer on mysticism, and a central personage in the group of devotees of theosophy which met in Dublin for many years. He was a friend of Joyce, Yeats, etc.

Russell's generosity and hospitality were legendary: Frank O'Connor fondly recalled "the warmth and kindness, which enfolded you like an old fur coat". He was the most loyal of friends, and in the notoriously fractious Dublin literary world Russell tried to keep the peace between his endlessly quarrelling colleagues: even the abrasive Seamus O'Sullivan could be forgiven a great deal, simply because "Seamus drinks too much". His interests were wide-ranging; he became a theosophist and wrote extensively on politics and economics, while continuing to paint and write poetry. Æ claimed to be a clairvoyant, able to view various kinds of spiritual beings, which he illustrated in paintings and drawings