“to hope for an outcome is to desire (be attracted to) it, to assign a probability somewhere between 0 and 1 to it, and to judge that there are sufficient reasons to engage in certain feelings and activities directed toward it” (Adrienne M. Martin)
“For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have?”
St. Paul – Apostle (Romans 8:24)
Either we have hope within us or we don’t; it is a dimension of the soul, and it’s not dependent on some observation of the world. Hope is an orientation of the spirit, an orientation of the heart; it transcends the world that is immediately experienced, and is anchored somewhere beyond the horizons.
Hope in this deep and powerful sense, is not the same as joy that things are going well, or willingness to invest in enterprises that are obviously heading for success, but rather an ability to work for something because it is good, not just because it stands a chance to succeed.
Hope is definitely not the same thing as optimism. It is not the conviction, that something will turn out well, but the certainty that something makes sense, regardless of how it turns out. It is Hope, above all, which gives the strength to live and continually try new things.
Vaclav Havel (Poet & Politician)
What oxygen is to the lungs, such is hope to the meaning of life.
Emil Brunner (theologian)
To hope means to be ready at every moment for that which is not yet born, and yet not become desperate if there is no birth in our lifetime.
Erich Fromm (Pscyhologist)
“To be a good human being is to have a kind of openness to the world, an ability to trust uncertain things beyond your own control, that can lead you to be shattered in very extreme circumstances for which you were not to blame. That says something very important about the condition of the ethical life: that it is based on a trust in the uncertain and on a willingness to be exposed; it’s based on being more like a plant than like a jewel, something rather fragile, but whose very particular beauty is inseparable from that fragility.”
Martha C. Nussbaum (Philosopher)
“We become active in so far as we hope. We hope in so far as we can see into the sphere of future possibilities. We undertake what we think is possible. … Realism teaches us a sense for reality—for what is. Hope awakens our sense for potentiality—for what could be. In concrete action we always relate the potentiality to what exists, the present to the future.”
Jurgen Moltmann (Theologian)