Concerning his motivation to destroy the stones, Thanos stated that:

The universe required correction. After that, the stones served no purpose beyond temptation.

I am wondering who is being tempted here?

Is the temptation Thanos's own? Or is it temptation from outside forces? I suspect, given the context of the statement, that the temptation is from outside forces (e.g. somebody wanting to use the stones to undo what Thanos had done: the snap).

Which leads me to ask - is there anyone powerful enough in the MCU to have wrested the stones from Thanos, now that he had all 6 and was effectively omnipotent? Is Captain Marvel plus support from the other surviving Avengers powerful enough to take on Thanos when he is wielding all 6 Infinity Stones?

I suspect that nobody could have taken the stones from Thanos, but then I am puzzled as to why he would destroy the stones (the universe could possibly require correction again, after all the human population has doubled in the last 60 years; halving all life with a simple snap does not ensure that it will remain that way forever).

So all of these questions flying about in my head is making me reconsider Thanos's motivations for destroying the stones. Something tells me he could have easily kept hold of them without much quarrel, given the powers that they bestowed upon him.

Is there any in-or-out-of universe information that expands further on the motivation Thanos had for destroying the stones?

  • 2
    With regard to the vote-to-close, the only question I want answering is the last one - the previous questions in the post are there to illustrate why I am questioning his motivations, as I tried to indicate with both the post title and the line "all of these questions flying about in my head is making me reconsider Thanos's motivations"
    – Jimmery
    Nov 10, 2020 at 16:33
  • “the universe could possibly require correction again” — Thanos's plan doesn't actually make sense. In his head, he's shown the universe the error of its ways; it's grateful, and will never again make the same mistake. He's done. Absolute power could only corrupt him further. Nov 10, 2020 at 20:39

1 Answer 1


The temptation Thanos refers to is both by himself and others and that leads into his motivations. The temptation of others should be self-explanatory, he doesn't want anyone to reverse what he has done. He says as much in the same scene you refer to.

Thanos: The universe required correction. After that, the stones served no purpose beyond temptation.

Bruce Banner: You murdered trillions.

Thanos: You should be grateful.

Natasha: Where are the stones?

Thanos: Gone. Reduced to atoms.

Bruce Banner: You used them two days ago!

Thanos: I used the stones to destroy the stones. It nearly killed me. But the work is done. It always will be.

Avengers: Endgame

Thanos also doesn't want to have the temptation of the Stones himself, likely for two reasons: he's retired and he doesn't want to draw attention to himself. Earth knows who caused the Snap yet it occurred all over the universe, not every planet will know and that puts a huge target on his head. He doesn't want to draw attention to himself and cause a fight when he's retired.

Thanos: I finally rest... and watch the sun rise on a grateful universe.

Avengers: Infinity War

And with every fight that is drawn towards him, he opens up the possibility, if ever so slight, that someone will take the Infinity Gauntlet and the Stones off of him and reverse what he has done. It is safer in the long run for him to just get rid of the Stones and not have to worry about it again.

  • Given his ability to (1) manipulate time, (2) teleport at will and (3) make reality seem like anything he wants, surely he could have hidden somewhere in the universe (it is a big place after all) - didn't the Avengers only find find him because he used the stones to destroy the stones?
    – Jimmery
    Nov 10, 2020 at 16:28
  • Seems to me that causing the snap (pissing off all the surviving heroes of the universe) and then getting rid of that power is more a of suicidal move for Thanos. Keeping the stones would be his only way at that point of ensuring he lives.
    – Jimmery
    Nov 10, 2020 at 16:30
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    @Jimmery Well they tracked him there because he used the Stones but who knows if they would have found him otherwise. And also yeah he could have likely have hidden himself but that goes against everything Thanos is, he believes he is doing the right thing and others will see him for that and wants to retire and not worry about it all. But at the same time he knows others don't agree with him. And who knows, maybe he wanted to die after he had some time to relax but as far as I know there isn't anything delving into this.
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Nov 10, 2020 at 16:32
  • you make some good points, thanks for your answer.
    – Jimmery
    Nov 10, 2020 at 16:35
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    Thanos told Nebula where he would go when he was done with the Snap. The energy surge caused by the stone's destruction just confirmed what she told them.
    – swbarnes2
    Nov 10, 2020 at 17:34

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