15 Leonard Nimoy (And Spock) Quotes That Still Inspire Us Today

by Adam Pliskin

Leonard Nimoy, the man who played Spock on "Star Trek," died this morning at the age of 83. Nimoy succumbed to end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in his home in Los Angeles.

Nimoy became famous for his role as the staunchly logical half-human/half-alien from the Planet Vulcan.

He played Spock for three seasons of "Star Trek," from 1966 through 1969.

The show developed a cult-like following and Nimoy continued to portray the character at conventions and in films.

He most recently appeared as Spock in JJ Abrams' cinematic reboot of the "Star Trek" franchise in which Zachary Quinto played a younger version of the character.

But, Nimoy the man was more than the characters he played. Nimoy was also a prolific poet and photographer. He even directed two of the films in the "Star Trek" series.

So, in Mr. Nimoy's honor, here are some of his and Spock's most iconic quotes:

You just have to roll with the punches.

I think it's my adventure, my trip, my journey, and I guess my attitude is, let the chips fall where they may.

-Leonard Nimoy

Karma pays dividends.

I'm touched by the idea that when we do things that are useful and helpful -- collecting these shards of spirituality -- that we may be helping to bring about a healing.

-Leonard Nimoy

Sharing is caring.

The miracle is this: the more we share, the more we have.

-Leonard Nimoy

Women are fickle creatures.

I've never understood the female capacity to avoid a direct answer to any question.


A dream for a perfect world.

We disposed of emotion, Doctor. Where there is no emotion, there is no motive for violence.


Explore life to the fullest.

That is the exploration that awaits you! Not mapping stars and studying nebula, but charting the unknown possibilities of existence.

-Leonard Nimoy

On the haves and the have-nots:

This troubled planet is a place of the most violent contrasts. Those who receive the rewards are totally separated from those who shoulder the burdens. It is not a wise leadership.


Seizing the moment often pay off.

In critical moments men sometimes see exactly what they wish to see.


The American Dream.

My folks came to US as immigrants, aliens, and became citizens. I was born in Boston, a citizen, went to Hollywood and became an alien.

-Leonard Nimoy

A good place to start.

Logic is the beginning of wisdom, not the end.

-Leonard Nimoy

On misanthropy:

May I say that I have not thoroughly enjoyed serving with Humans? I find their illogic and foolish emotions a constant irritant.


 It's important to keep moving forward.

I think about myself as like an ocean liner that's been going full speed for a long distance, and the captain pulls the throttle back all the way to 'stop,' but the ship doesn't stop immediately, does it? It has its own momentum and it keeps on going, and I'm very flattered that people are still finding me useful.

-Leonard Nimoy

 On the magic of photography:

My dream concept is that I have a camera and I am trying to photograph what is essentially invisible. And every once in a while I get a glimpse of her and I grab that picture.

-Leonard Nimoy

 Art should be personal.

I'm attracted to images that come from a personal exploration of a subject matter. When they have a personal stamp to them, then I think it becomes identifiable.

-Leonard Nimoy

 On Vulcan mind control:

Pain is a thing of the mind. The mind can be controlled.


I'll leave you with this: In "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan," Spock dies and Kirk gives a moving eulogy at his funeral. I think it's a fitting way to say "goodbye" to Mr. Spock himself, Leonard Nimoy.

Citations: Leonard Nimoy Spock of Star Trek Dies (NY Times)