Quotes from The Neverending Story

Michael Ende ·  396 pages

Rating: (131.7K votes)


“If you have never wept bitter tears because a wonderful story has come to an end and you must take your leave of the characters with whom you have shared so many adventures, whom you have loved and admired, for whom you have hoped and feared, and without whose company life seems empty and meaningless.

If such things have not been part of your own experience, you probably won't understand what Bastian did next.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“When it comes to controlling human beings there is no better instrument than lies. Because, you see, humans live by beliefs. And beliefs can be manipulated. The power to manipulate beliefs is the only thing that counts.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Every real story is a never ending story.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“If you have never spent whole afternoons with burning ears and rumpled hair, forgetting the world around you over a book, forgetting cold and hunger--

If you have never read secretly under the bedclothes with a flashlight, because your father or mother or some other well-meaning person has switched off the lamp on the plausible ground that it was time to sleep because you had to get up so early--

If you have never wept bitter tears because a wonderful story has come to an end and you must take your leave of the characters with whom you have shared so many adventures, whom you have loved and admired, for whom you have hoped and feared, and without whose company life seems empty and meaningless--

If such things have not been part of your own experience, you probably won't understand what Bastian did next.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Nothing is lost. . .Everything is transformed.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story



“There are many kinds of joy, but they all lead to one: the joy to be loved.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“You wish for something, you've wanted it for years, and you're sure you want it, as long as you know you can't have it. But if all at once it looks as though your wish might come true, you suddenly find yourself wishing you had never wished for any such thing.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Once someone dreams a dream, it can't just drop out of existence. But if the dreamer can't remember it, what becomes of it? It lives on in Fantastica, deep under earth. There are forgotten dreams stored in many layers. The deeper one digs, the closer they are. All Fantastica rests on a foundation of forgotten dreams.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“You must let what happens happen. Everything must be equal in your eyes, good and evil, beautiful and ugly, foolish and wise.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Bastian looked at the book.
'I wonder,' he said to himself, 'what's in a book while it's closed. Oh, I know it's full of letters printed on paper, but all the same, something must be happening, because as soon as I open it, there's a whole story with people I don't know yet and all kinds of adventures, deeds and battles. And sometimes there are storms at sea, or it takes you to strange cities and countries. All those things are somehow shut in a book. Of course you have to read it to find out. But it's already there, that's the funny thing. I just wish I knew how it could be.'
Suddenly an almost festive mood came over him.
He settled himself down, picked up the book, opened it to the first page, and began to read...”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story



“But that is another story and shall be told another time.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Strange as it may seem, horror loses its power to frighten when repeated too often.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“If you stop to think about it, you’ll have to admit that all the stories in the world consist essentially of twenty-six letters. The letters are always the same, only the arrangement varies. From letters words are formed, from words sentences, from sentences chapters, and from chapters stories.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“There were thousands and thousands of forms of joy in the world, but that all were essentially one and the same, namely, the joy of being able to love.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Wishes cannot be summoned up or kept away at will. They come from deeper within us than good or bad intentions. And they spring up unannounced.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story



“Only the right name gives beings and things their reality. A wrong name makes everything unreal. That's what lies do.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“The Nothing is spreading," groaned the first. "It's growing and growing, there's more of it every day, if it's possible to speak of more nothing. All the others fled from Howling Forest in time, but we didn't want to leave our home. The Nothing caught us in our sleep and this is what it did to us."

"Is it very painful?" Atreyu asked.

"No," said the second bark troll, the one with the hole in his chest. "You don't feel a thing. There's just something missing. And once it gets hold of you, something more is missing every day. Soon there won't be anything left of us.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Without a past you can't have a future.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Human passions have mysterious ways, in children as well as grown-ups. Those affected by them can't explain them, and those who haven't known them have no understanding of them at all. Some people risk their lives to conquer a mountain peak. No one, not even they themselves, can really explain why. Others ruin themselves trying to win the heart of a certain person who wants nothing to do with them. Still others are destroyed by their devotion to the pleasures of the table. Some are so bent on winning a game of chance that they lose everything they own, and some sacrafice everything for a dream that can never come true. Some think their only hope of happiness lies in being somewhere else, and spend their whole lives traveling from place to place. And some find no rest until they have become powerful. In short, there are as many different passions as there are people.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Human passions have mysterious ways, in children as well as grown-ups. Those affected by them can’t explain them, and those who haven’t known them have no understanding of them at all.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story



“A story can be new and yet tell about olden times. The past comes into existence with the story.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“He wanted to be loved for being just what he was. In this community of Yskalnari there was harmony, but no love.

He no longer wanted to be the greatest, strongest or cleverest. He had left all that far behind. He longed to be loved just as he was, good or bad, handsome or ugly, clever or stupid, with all his faults - or possibly because of them.

But what was he actually?

He no longer knew. So much have been given to him in Fantastica, and now, among all these gifts and powers, he could no longer find himself.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Wer niemals ganze Nachmittage lang mit glühenden Ohren und verstrubbeltem Haar über einem Buch saß und las und las und die Welt um sich her vergaß, nicht mehr merkte, daß er hungrig wurde oder fror -
Wer niemals heimlich beim Schein einer Taschenlampe unter der Bettdecke gelesen hat, weil Vater oder Mutter oder sonst irgendeine besorgte Person einem das Licht ausknipste mit der gutgemeinten Begründung, man müsse jetzt schlafen, da man doch morgen so früh aus den Federn sollte -
Wer niemals offen oder im geheimen bitterliche Tränen vergossen hat, weil eine wunderbare Geschichte zu Ende ging und man Abschied nehmen mußte von den Gestalten, mit denen man gemeinsam so viele Abenteuer erlebt hatte, die man liebte und bewunderte, um die man gebangt und für die man gehofft hatte, und ohne deren Gesellschaft einem das Leben leer und sinnlos schien -
Wer nichts von alledem aus eigener Erfahrung kennt, nun, der wird wahrscheinlich nicht begreifen können, was Bastian jetzt tat.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“What I've started I must finish. I've gone too far to turn back. Regardless of what may happen, I have to go forward.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“There are many kinds of delusion.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story



“Once someone dreams a dream, it can't just drop out of existence. But if the dreamer can't remember it, what becomes of it?”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“It's asking us our names," Falkor reported.

"I'm Atreyu!" Atreyu cried.

"I'm Falkor!" cried Falkor.

The boy without a name was silent.

Atreyu looked at him, then took him by the hand and cried: "He's Bastian Balthazar Bux!"

"It asks," Falkor translated, "why he doesn't speak for himself."

"He can't," said Atreyu. "He has forgotten everything."

Falkor listened again to the roaring of the fountain.

"Without memory, it says, he cannot come in. The snakes won't let him through."

Atreyu replied: "I have stored up everything he told us about himself and his world. I vouch for him."

Falkor listened.

"It wants to know by what right?"

"I am his friend," said Atreyu.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“Reluctantly Bastian's thoughts turned back to reality. He was glad the Neverending Story had nothing to do with that.
He didn't like books in which dull, cranky writers describe humdrum events in the very humdrum lives of humdrum people. Reality gave him enough of that kind of thing, why should he read about it? Besides, he couldn't stand it when a writer tried to convince him of something. And these humdrum books, it seemed to him, were always trying to do just that.
Bastian liked books that were exciting or funny, or that made him dream. Books where made-up characters had marvelous adventures, books that made him imagine all sorts of things.
Because one thing he was good at, possibly the only thing, was imagining things so clearly that he almost saw and heard them.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“He had been through a good deal in the course of the Great Quest — he had seen beautiful things and horrible things — but up until now he had not known that one and the same creature can be both, that beauty can be terrifying.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story


“When it comes to controlling human beings there is no better instrument than lies. Because, you see, humans live by beliefs. And beliefs can be manipulated. The power to manipulate beliefs is the only thing that counts

... Who knows what use they’ll make of you? Maybe you’ll help them to persuade people to buy things they don’t need, or hate things they know nothing about, or hold beliefs that make them easy to handle, or doubt the truths that might save them.”
― Michael Ende, quote from The Neverending Story



About the author

Michael Ende
Born place: in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Bavaria, Germany
Born date November 12, 1929
See more on GoodReads

Popular quotes

“علينا أن نغتنم كل فرصة للتكلُّم بالحق والمُناداة بالسلام، ولا سيما الآن. بقى وقت قصيرٌ جداً لكثيرين جداً”
― Francine Rivers, quote from A Voice in the Wind


“Life is an experimental journey undertaken involuntarily. It is a journey of the spirit through the material world and, since it is the spirit that travels, it is the spirit that is experienced. That is why there exist contemplative souls who have lived more intensely, more widely, more tumultuously than others who have lived their lives purely externally.”
― Fernando Pessoa, quote from The Book of Disquiet


“That ewe's life had been saved not by medicinal therapy but simply by stopping her pain and allowing nature to do its own job of healing. It was a lesson I have never forgotten; the animals confronted with severe continuous pain and the terror and shock that goes with it will often retreat even into death, and if you can remove that pain amazing things can happen. It is difficult to explain rationally but I know that it is so.”
― James Herriot, quote from All Things Bright and Beautiful


“Futures not achieved are only branches of the past: dead branches.”
― Italo Calvino, quote from Invisible Cities


“For the hundredth time, she closed her eyes so she could see another room in her mind's eye, one with a curtain full of stars, and a mattress surrounded by books that whispered their stories to her at night. – Pg. 235”
― Cornelia Funke, quote from The Thief Lord


Interesting books

The Man in the Iron Mask
(59.3K)
The Man in the Iron...
by Alexandre Dumas
The Reluctant Vampire
(11.6K)
The Reluctant Vampir...
by Lynsay Sands
A King's Ransom
(19.2K)
A King's Ransom
by Jude Watson
Avenger
(6.6K)
Avenger
by Frederick Forsyth
The Gods Will Have Blood
(1.5K)
The Gods Will Have B...
by Anatole France
Loving Hart
(6.8K)
Loving Hart
by Ella Fox

About BookQuoters

BookQuoters is a community of passionate readers who enjoy sharing the most meaningful, memorable and interesting quotes from great books. As the world communicates more and more via texts, memes and sound bytes, short but profound quotes from books have become more relevant and important. For some of us a quote becomes a mantra, a goal or a philosophy by which we live. For all of us, quotes are a great way to remember a book and to carry with us the author’s best ideas.

We thoughtfully gather quotes from our favorite books, both classic and current, and choose the ones that are most thought-provoking. Each quote represents a book that is interesting, well written and has potential to enhance the reader’s life. We also accept submissions from our visitors and will select the quotes we feel are most appealing to the BookQuoters community.

Founded in 2023, BookQuoters has quickly become a large and vibrant community of people who share an affinity for books. Books are seen by some as a throwback to a previous world; conversely, gleaning the main ideas of a book via a quote or a quick summary is typical of the Information Age but is a habit disdained by some diehard readers. We feel that we have the best of both worlds at BookQuoters; we read books cover-to-cover but offer you some of the highlights. We hope you’ll join us.