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Inspirational Quotes for Coping with Grief

August 1, 2020

Loss and grief are as much a part of our lives as joy and hope. When we lose someone we love, it’s often challenging to navigate our feelings in the midst of such a difficult journey. It’s important to know that you aren’t alone in the experience of loss and grief. Whatever stage of the grieving process you’re in, there are those who’ve come before you and offered their own words of wisdom to help you feel less alone, understand the process, and provide comfort.

An inspirational quote serves many purposes. It can give us words when our own words fail us; it gives us a sense of community by understanding that we are not alone in our experiences and feelings, and it helps put our own thoughts and feelings into perspective by understanding the human condition. We hope these inspirational quotes – by famous literary figures and unknown authors – help you or a loved one along the path of grieving.

Literary Quotes

From our great literary traditions, we find many inspirational ideas about love, loss and grieving. Here are some words of wisdom from literary figures and prominent works of literature:

  • “Tears water our growth.”
    William Shakespeare
  • “Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak knits up the o-er wrought heart and bids it break.”
    William Shakespeare, Macbeth
  • “Grief is a most peculiar thing; we’re so helpless in the face of it. It’s like a window that will simply open of its own accord. The room grows cold, and we can do nothing but shiver. But it opens a little less each time, and a little less; and one day we wonder what has become of it.”
    Arthur Golden, Memoirs of a Geisha
  • “We bereaved are not alone. We belong to the largest company in all the world—the company of those who have known suffering.”
    Helen Keller, We Bereaved
  • “Only people who are capable of loving strongly can also suffer great sorrow, but this same necessity of loving serves to counteract their grief and heals them.”
    Leo Tolstoy
  • “The darker the night, the brighter the stars,
    The deeper the grief, the closer is God!”

Fyodor Doystoyevsky, Crime and Punishment

  • “In the garden of memory, in the palace of dreams…that is where you and I shall meet.”
    Alice Through the Looking Glass
  • “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” – Winnie the Pooh

Biblical and Religious Quotes

We often turn to our religious traditions when faced with loss and grief. Here are some inspirational quotes from the Bible.

  • “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”
    Psalms 23:4
  • “Weeping may endure for a night but joy cometh in the morning.”
    Psalms 30:5
  • “God is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
    Psalms 34:18
  • “Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted.”
    Matthew 5:4
  • “For no one is cast off by the Lord forever. Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love. For he does not willingly bring affliction or grief to anyone.”
    Lamentations 3:31-33

Anonymous Quotes

From cultural traditions around the world to unknown sources, here are some quotes to inspire and heal:

  • “What soap is for the body; tears are for the soul.”
    Jewish proverb
  • “Perhaps they are not stars in the sky, but rather openings where our loved ones shine down to let us know they are happy.”
    Eskimo legend
  • “When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure.”
    Author unknown
  • “Why does it take a minute to say hello and forever to say goodbye?”
    Author unknown
  • “Those we love don’t go away, they walk beside us every day…unseen, unheard, but always near, still loved, still missed, and very dear.” Unknown
  • “There are some who bring a light so great to the world that even after they have gone the light remains.”  – Unknown 

More Quotes

Here are some additional quotes to provide comfort.

  • “Grief is the price we pay for love.”
    Queen Elizabeth II
  • “The reality is that you will grieve forever. You will not ‘get over’ the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will heal and you will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again, but you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same nor would you want to.”
    Elisabeth Kubler-Ross​
  • “What we once enjoyed and deeply loved we can never lose, for all that we love deeply becomes part of us.”
    Helen Keller
  • “Grit your teeth and let it hurt. Don’t deny it, don’t be overwhelmed by it. It will not last forever.”
    Rabbi Harold Kushner

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