“Would not a man rather have so much sympathy with the coming generation as to spare it the burden of existence?”
– Arthur Schopenhauer, Studies in Pessimism: The Essays
“A coin is examined, and only after careful deliberation, given to a beggar, whereas a child is flung out into the cosmic brutality without hesitation.”
– Peter Wessel Zapffe
“Some anti-natalist positions are founded on either a dislike of children or on the interests of adults who have greater freedom and resources if they do not have and rear children. My anti-natalist view is different. It arises, not from a dislike of children, but instead from a concern to avoid the suffering of potential children and the adults they would become, even if not having those children runs counter to the interests of those who would have them.”
David Benatar, Better Never to Have Been: The Harm of Coming Into Existence
Tis but a day we sojourn here below,
And all the gain we get is grief and woe,
Then, leaving our life’s riddles all unsolved,
And burdened with regrets, we have to go.
– Omar Khayyám, Rubaiyat
“I saw the tears of the oppressed—
and they have no comforter;
power was on the side of their oppressors—
and they have no comforter.
And I declared that the dead,
who had already died,
are happier than the living,
who are still alive.
But better than both
is the one who has never been born,
who has not seen the evil
that is done under the sun.”
Ecclesiastes, attributed to King Solomon