25 Wise Rainer Maria Rilke Quotes on Life, Love, and Reflection

Let the words of these Rainer Maria Rilke quotes flow over you and sink in on the way.

Rainer Maria Rilke was a Bohemian-Austrian poet and novelist.

While he died nearly 100 years ago, his work continues to be popular throughout America and the world.

He is often quoted even by those who don’t really know who he is.

His work was thought to be of a somewhat “mystical” nature.

He spoke and wrote of love, relationships, and many of these Rainer Maria Rilke quotes speak to the importance of living with constant reflection and with more of a purpose.

Don’t forget to also check out these Noam Chomsky quotes from the father of linguistics.

Check out our most popular quote article, a list of short inspirational quotes for daily inspiration.

Our inspirational quote category page has even more inspirational and educational quotes.

Rainer Maria Rilke quotes about love

1. “To love is good, too: love being difficult. For one human being to love another: that is perhaps the most difficult of all our tasks, the ultimate, the last test and proof, the work for which all other work is but preparation.” -Rainer Maria Rilke

Rainer Maria Rilke quotes about love

2. “Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.” -Rainer Maria Rilke

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3. “The point of marriage is not to create a quick commonality by tearing down all boundaries; on the contrary, a good marriage is one in which each partner appoints the other to be the guardian of his solitude, and thus they show each other the greatest possible trust.” -Rainer Maria Rilke

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4. “Yet everything that touches us, me and you, takes us together like a violin’s bow, which draws one voice out of two separate strings.” -Rainer Maria Rilke

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5. “We need, in love, to practice only this: letting each other go. For holding on comes easily; we do not need to learn it.” -Rainer Maria Rilke

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6. “Young people, who are beginners in everything, cannot yet know love: they have to learn it.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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7. “Love consists of this: two solitudes that meet, protect and greet each other.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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8. “But once the realization is accepted that even between the closest people infinite distances exist, a marvelous living side-by-side can grow up for them if they succeed in loving the expanse between them, which gives them the possibility of always seeing each other as a whole and before an immense sky.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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9. “Love consists in this, that two solitudes protect and touch and greet each other.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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If you’re enjoying these quotes, make sure to check out our collection of solitude quotes to bring you peace.

10. “That’s love: two lonely persons keep each other safe and touch each other and talk to each other.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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Wise Rainer Maria Rilke quotes

11. “There are quantities of human faces, but there are many more faces, for each person has several.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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12. “Make your ego porous. Will is of little importance, complaining is nothing, fame is nothing. Openness, patience, receptivity, solitude is everything.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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13. “The purpose of life is to be defeated by greater and greater things.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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14. “Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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15. “Ah, how good it is to be among people who are reading.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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16. “If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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17. “To be in circumstances that are working upon us, that from time to time place us in front of great natural things – that is all we need.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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18. “If your daily life seems poor, do not blame it; blame yourself, tell yourself that you are not poet enough to call forth its riches; for to the creator there is no poverty and no poor indifferent place.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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19. “It is good to be alone, for solitude is difficult; that something is difficult should be one more reason to do it.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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Rainer Maria Rilke quotes about writing

20. “No one can advise or help you – no one. There is only one thing you should do. Go into yourself. Search for the reason that bids you write, find out whether it spreading out its root in the deepest places of your heart… Delve into yourself for a deep answer.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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21. “Find out the reason that commands you to write; see whether it has spread its roots into the very depth of your heart; confess to yourself you would have to die if you were forbidden to write.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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22. “With poems one accomplishes so little when one writes them early. One should hold off and gather sense and sweetness a whole life long, a long life if possible, and then, right at the end, one could perhaps write ten lines that are good.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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23. “If, when you wake up in the morning, you can think of nothing but writing… then you are a writer.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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24. “To write rhythmic prose one must go deep into oneself and find the anonymous and multiple rhythms of the blood. Prose needs to be built like a cathedral. There, one is truly without a name, without ambition, without help; on scaffoldings alone with one’s consciousness.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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25. “Your doubt can become a good quality if you train it. It must become knowing, it must become criticism.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

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Did you enjoy reading these Rainer Maria Rilke quotes?

There are many lessons that we can walk away with after reading these Rainer Maria Rilke quotes, even if you’re not typically a fan of poetry.

As we transition to another new year, we can reflect on the newness of the season and year that he speaks of.

When thinking about connecting with people, we can reflect on the relationship, connection, and love quotes that Rainer Maria Rilke wrote of.

If you need a little motivation to get yourself writing, you can find inspiration in his words of digging deep and doing some self-reflection.

And finally, if you need a little encouragement, you can take heart in the mention that you’re never too old or is it too late to get started.

What’s your biggest takeaway from these Rainer Maria Rilke quotes and sayings?

Do you have any other favorite quotes to add?

Let us know in the comment section below.

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