The twentieth-century artist who uses symbols is alienated because the system of symbols is a private one. After you have dealt with the symbols you are still private, you are still lonely, because you are not sure anyone will understand it except yourself. The ransom of privacy is that you are alone.
(Louise Bourgeois (b. 1911), U.S. sculptor. As quoted in Lives and Works, by Lynn F. Miller and Sally S. Swenson (1981).)
In his lonely solitude, the solitary man feeds upon himself; in the thronging multitude, the many feed upon him. Now choose.
(Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900), German philosopher, classical scholar, critic of culture. Friedrich Nietzsche, Sämtliche Werke: Kritische Studienausgabe, vol. 2, p. 520, eds. Giorgio Colli and Mazzino Montinari, Berlin, de Gruyter (1980). Mixed Opinions and Maxims, aphorism 348, "From the Land of the Cannibals," (1879).)
The loneliest feeling in the world is when you think you are leading the parade and turn to find that no one is following you. No president who badly misguesses public opinion will last very long.
(Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. president. Interview with former Secretary of Labor Frances Perkins, University of Illinois, Urbana (Spring 1958).
FDR was always conscious of the need to educate the public on important national issues and was determined not to take the lead unless he was reasonably sure of public support. However, he was also extremely adept at providing leadership for the public to educate them to support policies he believed were essential to the public weal. He made this same observation in a letter to a friend with only slightly different wording.)
If thou fill thy brain with Boston and New York, with fashion and covetousness, and wilt stimulate thy jaded senses with wine and French coffee, thou shalt find no radiance of wisdom in the lonely waste of the pinewoods.
(Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "The Poet," Essays, Second Series (1844).)