Wise Quotes

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Wise Quotes

What you possess, you lose.

Be a mountain or lean on one.

To get lost is to learn the way.

Chasing happiness chases it away.

Bad happens fast. Good happens slow.

If you are filled with pride, then you will have no room for wisdom.

Great doubts, deep wisdom. Small doubts, little wisdom.

Awareness, not age, leads to wisdom.

Do your work, then step back. The only path to serenity.

Ignore what won't impact your life.

Knowledge wants to talk. Wisdom wants to listen.

Most things will seem important and urgent. You become wise when you realize most are not.

It is easier to look wise than to talk wisely.

Don't go in and hide; don't come out and shine; stand stock-still in the middle.

The sage rests. Nothing unpleasant can disturb him, his virtue is complete and his spirit is not stirred up.

The imagination of the genius vastly surpasses his intellect; the intellect of the academic vastly surpasses his imagination.

It is one thing to be clever, but quite another to be wise.

Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid of standing still.

In the dojo, aim for truth. At home, aim for harmony. At work, aim for progress. Among friends, aim for trust. In the world, aim for sincerity.

The Master stays behind; that is why she is ahead. She is detached from all things; that is why she is one with them. Because she has let go of herself, she is perfectly fulfilled.

The person seeking to learn wins what the person seeking to impress loses.

One is not born a genius, one becomes a genius.

The busy walk quickly. The healthy walk daily. The happy walk slowly.

The sign of an intelligent people is their ability to control emotions by the application of reason.

Wisdom cannot be learned from a book. It is acquired only in a living formation...It is lived. And unless one lives it, one cannot have it.

Many a genius has been slow of growth. Oaks that flourish for a thousand years do not spring up into beauty like a reed.

There's a time for daring and there's a time for caution, and a wise man understands which is called for.

The perfect man employs his mind as a mirror. It grasps nothing; it refuses nothing. It receives but does not keep.

Genius is finding the invisible link between things.

The sage battles his own ego. The fool battles everyone else's.

Wisdom leads us back to childhood.

The more intelligent one is, the more men of originality one finds. Ordinary people find no difference between men.

Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose.

Men of lofty genius sometimes accomplish the most when they work least, for their minds are occupied with their ideas and the perfection of their conceptions, to which they afterwards give form.

The only thing that we know is that we know nothing and that is the highest flight of human wisdom.

The best math you can learn is how to calculate the future cost of current decisions.

Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.

Wisdom cannot be imparted. Wisdom that a wise man attempts to impart always sounds like foolishness to someone else... Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom. One can find it, live it, do wonders through it, but one cannot communicate and teach it.

Fools and wise folk are alike harmless. It is the half-wise and the half-foolish, who are the most dangerous.

It is easier to be wise for others than for ourselves.

Excellence is never an accident. It represents the wise choice of many alternatives. Choice, not chance, determines your destiny.

You will find only what you bring in.

Convinced myself, I seek not to convince.

How you do anything is how you can do everything.

Fools stand in dread of fortune, wise men bear it.

The first rule of fishing is to fish where the fish are.

When learning, explore widely. When mastering, focus narrowly.

When failure is expensive, plan carefully. When failure is cheap, act quickly.

No great wisdom can be reached without sacrifice.

To be popular add to the consensus/narrative. To help society leave it behind and explore.

The fools are preoccupied by things they can't control. That's why they are tense. The wise are indifferent to things they can't control. That's why they are calm.

In Zen they say: If something is boring after two minutes, try it for four. If still boring, try it for eight, sixteen, thirty-two, and so on. Eventually one discovers that it's not boring at all but very interesting.

Opportunity knocks at the door only once.

Reading is like fresh food for the mind. The consumption fills you with wisdom. Writing is like exercise for the mind. The effort leads to stronger ideas. Meditation is like fasting for the mind. The practice clears your mental digestive tract.

Getting exceptional outcomes in life is often about knowing when to turn it on and when to turn it off. When to rest v. when to train hard. When to save v. when to invest. When to talk v. when to listen. When to act v. when to wait. It's not the act, but the timing of the act.

There is frequently more to be learned from the unexpected questions of a child than the discourses of men.

Be wise; soar not too high to fall; but stoop to rise.

We cannot choose our external circumstances, but we can always choose how we respond to them.

We know what we are, but not what we may be.

The smartest person is often the one who skips the meeting.

Idiots want to be smart, smart people try not to be idiots.

When I think of all I have said, I envy the mute.

The emptier the head, the louder the mouth.

Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.

Do you see a man who is wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.

It is easy to find a logical and virtuous reason for not doing what you don't want to do.

An erudite is someone who displays less than he knows; a journalist or consultant, the opposite.

Probably the difference between man and the monkeys is that the monkeys are merely bored, while man has boredom plus imagination.

Some would be sages if they did not believe they were so already.

Losing an illusion makes you wiser than finding a truth.

The wise win before they fight, while the ignorant fight to win.

Teaching without words and working without doing are understood by very few.

What the wise man does in the beginning, the fool does in the end.

A rational person understands people can act irrationally. An irrational person believes people always act rationally.

Wisdom is an iron shield against the tumult and monotony of a domestic existence.

Intelligence lies in recognizing one's own ignorance. Wisdom lies in the indifference to the pride of this realization.

Truth lies in the indifference to self-image.

The only thing you control is how you respond. Anything else is just pure coincidence.

Those who talk should do and only those who do should talk.

You don't become completely free just by avoiding to be a slave; you also need to avoid becoming a master.

People are much less interested in what you are trying to show them than in what you are trying to hide.

The element move upward, downward, in all directions. The motion of virtue is different - deeper. It moves at a steady pace on a road hard to discern, and always forward.

I have to tell jokes because you are all religious people, you tend to be serious. I have to tickle you so sometimes you forget your religiousness, you forget all your philosophies, theories, systems, and you fall down to earth. I have to bring you back to the earth again and again, otherwise you will tend to become serious, more and more serious. And seriousness is a canceric growth.

The sage is still not because he takes stillness to be good and therefore is still. The ten thousand things are insufficient to distract his mind - that is the reason he is still.

In an age of acceleration, nothing can be more exhilarating than going slow. In an age of distraction, nothing is so luxurious as paying attention. In an age of constant movement, nothing is so urgent as sitting still.

Whenever you feel rooted and established in place, that is when you should be truly afraid.

Either you create your circumstances or they will be created for you. The wise man creates, the fool ponders.

The most important piece of information there is on the battlefield is where you are.

Silence is that menacing sage that haunts you with its wisdom.

Where there are too many policemen, there is no liberty. Where there are too many soldiers, there is no peace. Where there are too many lawyers, there is no justice.

A memory without the emotional charge is called wisdom.

You should sit and meditate for 20 minutes, unless you're too busy, then you should sit and meditate for an hour.

Seek wisdom, not knowledge. Knowledge is of the past, wisdom is of the future.

In the moment of crisis, the wise build bridges and the foolish build dams.

Happiness is what people seek. Reality is what hits them. Disappointment is what they get. Detachment is what they need.

Reading ten thousand books is not as useful as traveling ten thousand miles.

He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes; he who does not ask a question remains a fool forever.

Gardening is not outcome-oriented. A successful harvest is not the end of a gardener's existence, but only a phase of it. As any gardener knows, the vitality of a garden does not end with a harvest.

Progress, like evolution, must be neither too slow nor too fast. Too slow means extinction from lack of adaptation. Too fast prevents retaining the benefits of past improvements, hence, again, extinction.

They think that intelligence is about noticing things that are relevant ; in a complex world, intelligence consists in ignoring things that are irrelevant (avoiding false patterns).

Intuition is unconscious accumulated experience informing judgement in real time.

Mindfulness gives you time. Time gives you choices. Choices, skillfully made, lead to freedom.

Wise men don't need to prove their point; men who need to prove their point aren't wise.

The foolish reject what they see. The wise reject what they think.

The wise man is naturally quiet, subdued, and largely silent.

Better to have fewer wants than greater riches to supply increasing wants.

Whatever you're feeling, accept it. Whatever you're thinking, ignore it.

Decisions: If you can't decide, the answer is no. If two equally difficult paths, choose the one more painful in the short term . Choose the path that leaves you more equanimous in the long term.

True education starts when you laugh at what you already know and realize all the things you don't.

Someone who says 'I don't know' to a question might know more than someone who answers with elaborate opinions.

The novice gets excited when he knows the answer; the master gets excited when he doesn't.

You can learn a lot from a lot of people if you're willing to listen and never think you know it all.

Among the most necessary knowledge is the knowledge of how to live well, that is, how to produce the least possible evil and the greatest goodness in one's life.

Intelligence comes from meditation, intelligence comes from rebellion, intelligence does not come from memory.

A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.

People undervalue their time because it can't be traded. As if pricelessness were the same as valuelessness.

Modern society is defined by an excess of opportunity. We have more information, more products, and more options than ever before. As a result, curating, filtering, and refining are more important skills than ever before. Those who edit best will find the signal in the noise.

Acquiring wisdom is a moral duty as well as a practical one.

Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of others, instead, seek what they sought.

We have access to more information, but lack the wisdom of our ancestors.

The only sustainable game worth playing is the one where you control nothing.

A man's most urgent necessity is neither happiness or money. It is wisdom. For it is wisdom that he will need to navigate the turbulent waters of his day to day existence without succumbing to the ocean of turmoils or to the empty road of prescriptions.

Stoicism is not a matter of gritting your teeth. It's about seeing things differently so that you do not need to grit your teeth.

Timeless: Science, math, philosophy, rhetoric, first principles, creating art and business, family and lifelong friends, habits to calm mind and body. Temporary: Politics, news, entertainment, memorizing facts, hourly work, transactional relationships, drugs and doctors for mind and body.

My whole teaching consists of two words, meditation and love. Meditate so that you can feel immense silence, and love so that your life can become a song, a dance, a celebration.

Perfection is brittle. Imperfection is antifragile. The more you try to appear flawless - in work, in love, in life - the less you can have problems. But if you identify as someone who is always learning and evolving, then facing problems is normal and you can start solving them.

If anyone can refute me - show me I'm making a mistake or looking at things from the wrong perspective - I'll gladly change. It's the truth I'm after, and the truth never harmed anyone. What harms us is to persist in self-deceit and ignorance.

Renunciation is not getting rid of the things of this world, but accepting that they pass away.

You learn a lot when you learn to be humble.

I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him.

Smart people tend to ask clarifying questions, listen, put things in their own words, and change their mind.

Getting wiser is a combination of humility and diligent curiosity. Without the first, the second is useless: You won't truly learn anything.

Save your wisdom for people who come looking for it. People would rather drown in ignorance than hop on an unsolicited life raft of knowledge.

I do not belong to the category of the learned. My whole life has been based on a fundamental truth which can only be called unlearning.

Do not look down on other schools, but take from them whatever is good. Drop anything bad, even if it comes from your own school.

Everything must be questioned. Then the mind becomes extraordinarily sensitive, alive and intelligent.

When failure costs are low, it's mathematically better to accelerate iteration speed than decrease error rate.

We're too concentrated on having our children learn the answers. We should teach them how to ask questions because that's how you learn.

The wise man corrects his own errors by observing those of others.

Wise men learn more from fools than fools from the wise.

We don't get wise by staying in a room with all the doors and windows closed.

Abundance of knowledge does not teach men to be wise.

All I can do for you is help you to unlearn.

A truly wise man is always joyful.

Happiness does not depend on outward things but on the way we see them.

The heart of the wise man lies quiet like limpid water.

A symptom of inner peace is a smile. The evidence is calmness. The consequences are meaning and happiness. The causes are curiosity, solitude and understanding.

It is perhaps wise to ask little of life and its people, to live as a gentle and inconspicuous human who is here for a short while. Weaves in and out of the lives of a few, asks nothing from them. Then one day, quietly retreats into the beyond.

You'll find more robust wisdom studying what the lives of happy people don't include. Sever the negative tails rather than chase happiness.

Your conscious action creates your future. Your unconscious reaction recreates your past.

If you understand things, if you see things properly, you will naturally, slowly develop peace from mind.

It is important that man dreams, but it is perhaps equally important that he can laugh at his own dreams.

On the whole, the enjoyment of leisure is something which decidedly costs less than the enjoyment of luxury. All it requires is an artistic temperament which is bent on seeking a perfectly useless afternoon spent in a perfectly useless manner.

There is no value in life except what you choose to place upon it, and no happiness in any place except what you bring to it yourself.

My path is the path of stopping, the path of enjoying the present moment. It is a path where every step brings me back to my true home. It is a path that leads nowhere. I am on my way home. I arrive at every step.

A wise man, recognizing that the world is but an illusion, does not act as if it is real, so he escapes the suffering.

The happy man is one who is freed from both fear and desire because of the gift of reason.

A fool sees himself as another, but a wise man sees others as himself.

The wise person finds enemies more useful than the fool does friends.

Wise men are able to make a fitting use even of their enmities.

The words of the proud man impose silence on all others so that he alone may be heard. The humble man speaks only in order to be spoken to.

Fools aim for fame. The wise aim for respect.

Remember: You have only so much energy and so much time. Every moment wasted on the affairs of others subtracts from your strength.

Focus, not on the rudenesses of others, not on what they've done or left undone, but on what you have and haven't done yourself.

Don't ask people what matters to them, watch how they live.

You never win an argument until they attack your person.

I am inclined to think that the power of wisdom is better shown by a display of calmness in the midst of provocation.

Trade fear for courage and you obtain progress. Trade ambition for detachment and you obtain peace. The wisest are able to be both.

You don't have to be brilliant, only a little bit wiser than the other guys, on average, for a long, long time.

We try more to profit from always remembering the obvious than from grasping the esoteric. It is remarkable how much long-term advantage people like us have gotten by trying to be consistently not stupid, instead of trying to be very intelligent.

You cannot be skilled at everything. You need to play to your strengths and not imagine you can be great at whatever you put your mind to.

Success is the result of right decisions. Right decisions are the result of experience. Experience is the result of wrong decisions.

If you feel uncomfortable around people smarter than you, you're status-seeking. If you feel lucky, you're wealth-seeking.

The easy path is only easy in the short term and the long path is only hard in the short term. If you stick with them over time, the paths switch. The short game becomes a headwind and the long game becomes a tailwind. This is difficult to appreciate.

In the long-run, adaptation is more useful than optimization. At some point, the environment you optimized for will shift. The rules of the game will change. The flexible prevail.

Your time is the most valuable resource you have. It's finite in amount, always depleting, and can never be regained back if its lost in any way. Much of success in life can be reduced to who used their time wisely, and who did not. Your life is your time, so protect it as such.

The harder you work, the more confidence you get. But you may be working hard on something that is false.

Working hard is overrated. Choosing what to work on and who to work on it with is underrated.

It's smart to emulate what works. It's smarter to find out what works for you.

Creative ideas will come to you in the quiet moment in between your thoughts. You are wiser than you think. Be still and see what happens.

Focused on the process, our creative life retains a sense of adventure. Focused on the product, the same creative life can feel foolish or barren.

A large part of problem-solving is the ability to see a problem in its true form. If you're able to describe a problem in a sufficiently clear and precise fashion, most of the solution will become evident. Writing helps. Write about your problems. It's more precise than thinking.

A wise doctor is one who never lets his knowledge predominate over his humanity.

When you have one eye focused on an outcome, you get drawn to secrets and shortcuts. The shortcut won't make you better. The secret won't get you there faster. One eye on the outcome means you only have one eye on the process. You control the process, not the outcome.

We choose outcomes as goals and treat processes as chores. A wiser approach is to set processes as goals and treat outcomes as by-products.

Sometimes it is more important to discover what one cannot do, than what one can do.

To act with a minimum of effort and obtain the maximum results, such is the way of the wise man.

Without understanding yourself, what is the use of trying to understand the world?

A person who know little likes to talk, and one who knows much mostly keeps silent. This is because a person who knows little thinks that everything he knows is important, and wants to tell everyone. A person who knows much also knows that there is much more he doesn't know. That's why he speaks only when it is necessary to speak, and when he is not asked questions, he keeps his silence.