36 Eat Pray Love quotes from Elizabeth Gilbert’s smash-hit travel novel.
I picked up a copy of Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert at a new-meets-used bookstore in Phoenix. I was on a journey of self-discovery then, and it only seemed fitting to buy it (in one of those self-proclaimed metaphorical moments that made me giddy and excited no less – y’all, I’m the queen of weird).
The book was used, but you couldn’t tell (apart from the giant red DISCOUNTED sticker on the front). The cover was clean and white, just like a blank canvas.
I reread Eat Pray Love later when it was an Eden Travel Book Club pick. And my copy, once home to clinically crisp pages, is now a den of highlighted streaks and annotations.
There were so many Eat Pray Love quotes that I became obsessed with during that period. I read them over and over again to take them in.
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Why 36 Eat Pray Love Quotes?
Eat Pray Love is a string of 108 tales. Gilbert’s idea of 108 originated from japa mala, a string of 108 Eastern prayer beads.
The novel is split into three parts with 36 stories each. So 36 it was. And truth be told, I had too many Eat Pray Love quotes I wanted to share with y’all to fit them into a top ten post (like I normally do) so here we are – 36 Eat Pray Love quotes.
36 Eat Pray Love Quotes
- “I am loyal and constant in my love of travel, as I have not always been loyal and constant in my other loves. I feel about travel the way a happy new mother feels about her impossible, colicky, restless newborn baby -I just don’t care what it puts me through. Because I adore it. Because it’s mine. Because it looks exactly like me. It can barf all over me if it wants to – I just don’t care.”
- “To travel is worth any cost or sacrifice.”
- “Until I feel as ecstatic about having a baby as I felt about going to New Zealand to search for a giant squid, I cannot have a baby.”
- “Looking for Truth is not some kind of spazzy free-for-all, not even during this, the great age of spazzy free-for-all.”
- “True wisdom gives the only possible answer at any given moment.”
- “Experience teaches us that the world is no nursery. I agree – the world isn’t a nursery. But the very fact that the world is so challenging is exactly why you sometimes must reach out of its jurisdiction for help, appealing to a higher authority in order to find your comfort.”
- “He put his hand on my arm and said, ‘Liz, you must be very polite with yourself when you are learning something new.'”
- “When I get lonely these days, I think: So be lonely, Liz. Learn your way around loneliness. Make a map of it. Sit with it, for once in your life. Welcome to the human experience. But never again use another person’s body or emotions as a scratching post for your own unfulfilled yearnings.”
- “Even in the Eternal City, says the silent Augusteum, one must always be prepared for riotous and endless waves of transformation.”
- “And the question now for me is, “What are my choices to be? What do I believe that I deserve in life? Where can I accept sacrifice, and where can I not?”
- “Parle come magni. It’s a reminder when you’re searching for the right words – to keep your language as simple and direct as Roman food. Don’t make a big production out of it. Just lay it on the table.”
- “Responsibility. That word worked on me until I worked on it, until I looked at it carefully and broke it down into the two words that make its true definition: the ability to respond.”
- “Now I have started living my own life. Imperfect and clumsy as it may look, it is resembling me now, thoroughly.”
- “Every city has a single word that defines it, that identifies most people who live there. If you could read people’s thoughts as they were passing you on the streets of any given place, you would discover that most of them are thinking the same thought. Whatever that majority thought might be – that is the word of the city. And if your personal word does not match the word of the city then you don’t really belong there.”
- “In a world of disorder and disaster and fraud, sometimes only beauty can be trusted. Only artistic excellence is incorruptible. Pleasure cannot be bargained down. And sometimes the meal is the only currency that is real.”
- “I wondered who is the ‘me’ when I am conversing with my mind and who is the ‘mind’. I thought about the relentless thought-processing, soul-devouring machine that is my brain and wondered how on earth I was ever going to master it. Then I remembered that line from Jaws and couldn’t help smiling. ‘We’re going to need a bigger boat.'”
- “Your ego’s job isn’t to serve you. Its only job is to keep itself in power. And right now, your ego’s scared to death cuz it’s about to get downsized. You keep up this spiritual path baby, and that bad boy’s days are numbered. Pretty soon your ego will be out of work and your heart will be making all the decisions.”
- “But here’s what you gotta understand, Groceries. If you clear out all that space in your mind that you’re using right now to obsess about this guy, you’ll have a vacuum there, an open spot – a doorway. And guess what the universe will do with the doorway? It will rush in – God will rush in – and fill you with more love than you ever dreamed.”
- “All these acquisitions and accomplishments – they run you down in the end. Life, if you keep chasing it so hard, will drive you to death. Time – when pursued like a bandit – will behave like one…You gotta let go and sit still and allow contentment to come to you.”
- “There are only two questions that human beings have ever fought over, all through history. ‘How much do you love me?’ And, ‘Who’s in charge?’ Everything else is somehow manageable. But these two questions of love and control undo us all.”
- “I’m choosing happiness over suffering, I know I am. I’m making space for the unknown future to fill up my life with yet-to-come surprises.”
- “I can select what I eat and read and study. I can choose how to regard unfortunate circumstances in my life – whether I will see them as curses or opportunities. I can choose my words and the tone of voice in which I speak to others. And most of all, I can choose my thoughts.”
- “Cocktails? Dancing? Piles of pork? Of course, I’ll come.”
- “We create words to define our experiences and those words bring attendant emotions like dogs on a leash.”
- “Ruin is a gift. Ruin is the road to transformation.”
- “I want God to play in my bloodstream the way sunlight amuses itself on the water.”
- “Destiny, I feel, is also a relationship – a play between divine grace and willful self-effort.”
- “Do not apologize for crying. Without this emotion, we are only robots.”
- “I’m sick of people telling me that I need a man. ‘You don’t need a man, Liz. You need a champion.'”
- “As smoking is to the lungs, so is resentment to the soul; even one puff of it is bad for you.”
- “Some days are meant to be counted, others are meant to be weighed.”
- “A poor man goes to church every day and prays in front of a statue of a great saint, begging: ‘Dear Saint, please please please, let me win the lottery!’ Finally, one day, the exasperated statue of the Saint comes to life, looks down upon the man and says: ‘My son, please please please, buy a ticket!'”
- “Sometimes to lose balance for love is part of living a balanced life.”
- “I was not rescued by a prince; I was the administrator of my own rescue.”
- “I think I deserve something beautiful.”
- “I crossed the street to walk in the sunshine.”
Did you enjoy these Eat Pray Love quotes? What are your favorite quotes from Eat Pray Love? Let me know in the comments below!