20 Inspirational Quotes by Yuval Noah Harari

Updated: Jul 28, 2020

Birth: February 24, 1976, Kiryat Ata, Israel

Yuval Noah Harari, an Israeli historian, philosopher and writer, was born in 1976. He completed his doctorate in history at Oxford University in 2002. He is currently teaching world history at the Faculty of Humanities at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and at the Department of History.

And he is the author of worldwide bestseller books such as "Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind", "Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow" and "21 Lessons for the 21st Century".

In 2019, Itzik Yahav and Yuval Noah Harari founded "Sapienship", whose mission is to clarify global conversation, focus attention on the most important challenges and support the search for solutions.


Even what people take to be their most personal desires are usually programmed by the imagined order./Yuval Noah Harari
Homo sapiens, you and me, we are basically the same as people 10,000 years ago. The next revolution will change that./Yuval Noah Harari
“This is the best reason to learn history: not in order to predict the future, but to free yourself of the past and imagine alternative destinies. Of course this is not total freedom – we cannot avoid being shaped by the past. But some freedom is better than none.” /Yuval Noah Harari
As a historian, I'm sceptical about conspiracy theories because the world is far too complicated to be managed by a few billionaires drinking scotch behind some closed doors. But I do think that the voters are correct in sensing that they're really losing power. And in reaction, they give the system an angry kick./Yuval Noah Harari
“We do not become satisfied by leading a peaceful and prosperous existence. Rather, we become satisfied when reality matches our expectations. The bad news is that as conditions improve, expectations balloon.” /Yuval Noah Harari
Censorship no longer works by hiding information from you; censorship works by flooding you with immense amounts of misinformation, of irrelevant information, of funny cat videos, until you're just unable to focus./Yuval Noah Harari
“The most common reaction of the human mind to achievement is not satisfaction, but craving for more.” /Yuval Noah Harari
It's very, very difficult to reinvent yourself when you're 40 or 50, whether you are a taxi driver who now needs to become a web designer, or anything else. It just becomes more difficult and more scary./Yuval Noah Harari
“In 2012 about 56 million people died throughout the world; 620,000 of them died due to human violence (war killed 120,000 people, and crime killed another 500,000). In contrast, 800,000 committed suicide, and 1.5 million died of diabetes. Sugar is now more dangerous than gunpowder.” /Yuval Noah Harari

“People are usually afraid of change because they fear the unknown. But the single greatest constant of history is that everything changes.” /Yuval Noah Harari
For many centuries, even thousands of years, patriotism worked quite well. Of course, it led to wars an so forth, but we shouldn't focus too much on the bad./Yuval Noah Harari
We are all living together on a single planet, which is threatened by our own actions. And if you don't have some kind of global cooperation, nationalism is just not on the right level to tackle the problems, whether it's climate change or whether it's technological disruption./Yuval Noah Harari
Humans are extremely good in acquiring new power, but they are not very good in translating this power into greater happiness, which is why we are far more powerful than ever before but we don't seem to be much happier./Yuval Noah Harari
Many people in their teens wonder about these big questions - what's the meaning of life, what are we doing here - then somewhere in their 20s, they seem to say, 'I'll just get married. I'll just have kids. I'll get back to that later.' But they never do. For me, it kept boiling./Yuval Noah Harari
My main ambition as a historian is to figure out what's really happening in the world, instead of the fictions that humans have been creating for thousands of years in order to explain or control what's happening in the world./Yuval Noah Harari
“History isn’t a single narrative, but thousands of alternative narratives. Whenever we choose to tell one, we are also choosing to silence others. Human” /Yuval Noah Harari
Humanist thinkers such as Rousseau convinced us that our own feelings and desires were the ultimate source of meaning and that our free will was, therefore, the highest authority of all./Yuval Noah Harari
“The greatest scientific discovery was the discovery of ignorance. Once humans realised how little they knew about the world, they suddenly had a very good reason to seek new knowledge, which opened up the scientific road to progress.” /Yuval Noah Harari
The idea that humans will always have a unique ability beyond the reach of non-conscious algorithms is just wishful thinking./Yuval Noah Harari

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