After featuring the writings of Shakespeare in a recent Monday Morning Motivational Quotes, a reader requested we give Goethe a shot. The more we researched, the more we became convinced  George Lucas must have read lots of Goethe growing up.

Here are small business motivational quotes by an 18th-century German author illustrated with scenes from Star Wars. (It’s why the internet was invented.)

1. Instruction does much, but encouragement everything.

Yoda and Luke

(Image: via youtube)

Letter to A. F. Oeser (9 November 1768)

2. A talent is formed in stillness, a character in the world’s torrent.

Luke with lightsaber

(Image: via wookiepedia)

Torquato Tasso, Act I, Scene. ii

3. One never goes so far as when one doesn’t know where one is going.

droids in the desert

(Image: via wookieepedia)

Letter to Carl Friedrich Zelter, December 3, 1812

4. One must be something in order to do something.

Han Solo

(Image: on google+ via lucasfilm)

Conversation with Eckermann, October 20 1828

5. Who is the happiest of men?


“Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, And in their pleasure takes joy, even as though ’twere his own.”

“Distichs” (The Poems of Goethe, 1853)

6. What dazzles, for the Moment spends its spirit: What’s genuine, shall posterity inherit.

Medal ceremony

(Image: on StarWarsAficionado via Ian Trussler )

Faust, part 1, Prelude on the Stage

7. Man errs as long as he strives.


Faust, part 1, Prologue in Heaven

8. I love those who yearn for the impossible.


Faust, part 2, Act II

9. The deed is everything, the glory nothing.

Admiral Ackbar

(Image: via wookieepedia)

Faust, part 2, Act IV

10. All intelligent thoughts have already been thought; what is necessary is only to try to think them again.

all intelligent thoughts

Proverbs in Prose (1819)

11. One often says to himself, that he ought to avoid having too many different businesses …


(Image via Wookeepedia)

“One often says to himself, that he ought to avoid having too many different businesses, to avoid becoming a jack-of-all-trades, and that the older one gets, the more one ought to avoid entering into new business. But … the very fact of growing older means taking up a new business; all our circumstances change, and we must either stop doing anything at all or else willing and consciously take on the new role we have to play on life’s stage.”

Maxims and Reflections (1833)

12. The desire to explain what is simple by what is complex, what is easy by what is difficult, is a calamity.


(Image: via wookieepedia)

Maxims and Reflections (1833) staffer David Hollerith and our friend Grand Master Jedi Knight Cole Huggins (@coleh) curated the “Star Wars” scenes.

Related Articles