Quotes from A Fine Balance

Rohinton Mistry ·  603 pages

Rating: (108.9K votes)


“The human face has limited space. If you fill it with laughter there will be no room for crying.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“Flirting with madness was one thing; when madness started flirting back, it was time to call the whole thing off.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“...you have to use your failures as stepping stones to success. You have to maintain a fine balance between hope and despair. In the end it’s all a question of balance.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“But nobody ever forgot anything, not really, though sometimes they pretended, when it suited them. Memories were permanent. Sorrowful ones remained sad even with the passing of time, yet happy ones could never be recreated - not with the same joy. Remembering bred its own peculiar sorrow. It seemed so unfair: that time should render both sadness and happiness into a source of pain.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“You see, we cannot draw lines and compartments and refuse to budge beyond them. Sometimes you have to use your failures as stepping-stones to success. You have to maintain a fine balance between hope and despair.' He paused, considering what he had just said. 'Yes', he repeated. 'In the end, it's all a question of balance.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance



“After all, our lives are but a sequence of accidents - a clanking chain of chance events. A string of choices, casual or deliberate, which add up to that one big calamity we call life.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“Distance was a dangerous thing, she knew. Distance changed people.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“Let me tell you a secret: there is no such thing as an uninteresting life
One day you must tell me your full and complete story, unabridged and unexpurgated.We will set aside some time for it, and meet. It's very important.
Maneck smiled. 'Why is it important?'
It's extremely important because it helps to remind yourself of who you are. Then you can go forward, without fear of losing yourself in this ever-changing world.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“...the face has limited space. My mother used to say, if you fill your face with laughing, there will be no more room for crying.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“Money can buy the necessary police order. Justice is sold to the highest bidder”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance



“What an unreliable thing is time--when I want it to fly, the hours stick to me like glue. And what a changeable thing, too. Time is the twine to tie our lives into parcels of years and months. Or a rubber band stretched to suit our fancy. Time can be the pretty ribbon in a little girl's hair. Or the lines in your face, stealing your youthful colour and your hair. .... But in the end, time is a noose around the neck, strangling slowly.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“If there was an abundance of misery in the world, there was also sufficient joy, yes - as long as one knew where to look for it.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“إنه ذهب بعيدًا. عندما تبتعد إلى هذا الحدّ، تتغيّر. المسافة أمر صعب. لا يُفترض بنا إلقاء اللوم عليه.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“…God is a giant quiltmaker. With an infinite variety of designs. And the quilt is grown so big and confusing, the pattern is impossible to see, the squares and diamonds and triangles don’t fit well together anymore, it’s all become meaningless. So He has abandoned it.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“There didn't seem to her any harm in it, and the make-believe was so comforting.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance



“بالرغم من كل شيء، ليست حياتنا سوى سلسلة من الحوادث، سلسلة من الأحداث العرضية. سلسلة من الخيارات، العرضية أو المتعمَّدة، تُضاف إلى تلك الفاجعة الكبيرة التي ندعوها الحياة.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“Where humans are concerned, the only emotion that made sense was wonder, at their ability to endure...”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“لماذا يتصرف النَّاس على هذا النحو بمشاعرهم؟ سواء أكانت غضبًا أم حبًا أم حزنًا، يحاولون على الدوام وضع شيء آخر مكان شعورهم. وهناك أيضًا أولئك الذين يتظاهرون بأن عواطفهم أكبر وأعظم من عواطف سواهم، فيغضبون بشدّة إذا تعرضوا لمضايقة صغيرة، في حين أنهم يضحكون على نحو هستيري مقابل ابتسامة أو ضحكة في السر. في كلتا الحالتين، هناك كذب.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“If time were a bolt of cloth,” said Om, “I would cut out all the bad parts. Snip out the scary nights and stitch together the good parts, to make time bearable. Then I could wear it like a coat, always live happily.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“What sense did the world make? Where was God, the Bloody Fool? Did He have no notion of fair and unfair? Couldn't He read a simple balance sheet? He would have been sacked long ago if He were managing a corporation, the things he allowed to happen...”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance



“Remembering bred its own peculiar sorrow. It seemed so unfair: that time should render both sadness and happiness into a source of pain.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“Lately you are brooding too much about rights. Give up this dangerous habit.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“How starved they seemed for ordinary kindness”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“Maneck studied beggermaster's excessive chatter, his attempt to hide his heartache. Why did human do that to their feelings? Whether it was anger or love or sadness, they always tried to put something else forward in its place. And then there were those who pretended their emotions were bigger and grander than anyone else's. A little annoyance they acted like gigantic rage; where a smile or chuckle will do, they laughed hysterically. Either way, it was dishonest.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“I've done lots of jobs. Right now, I'm a hair collector."

"That's good", said Ishvar tentatively. "What do you have to do as a hair-collector?"

"Collect hair."

"And there is money in that?"

"Oh very big business. There is a great demand for hair in foreign countries."

"What do they do with it? Asked Om skeptical."

"Many different things. Mostly they wear it.Sometimes they paint it in different colors-red, yellow, brown, blue. Foreign women enjoy wearing other people's hair. Men also, especially if they are bald.
In foreign countries they fear baldness. They are so rich in foreign countries, they can afford to fear all kinds of silly things.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance



“The Law is a grim, unsmiling thing. Not Justice, though. Justice is witty and whimsical and kind and caring.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“democracy is a see-saw between complete chaos and tolerable confusion”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“The carnage upon the chessboard of life, left wounded humans in its wake”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


“But it was an unrefrigerated world. And everything ended badly.”
― Rohinton Mistry, quote from A Fine Balance


About the author

Rohinton Mistry
Born place: in Bombay, India
Born date July 3, 1952
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