Last updated on March 19th, 2019 at 09:34 am

Tree in desert - Confucius' words of wisdom

A collection of 40 of the best words of wisdom quotes by Confucius, Lao Tzu, Henry David Thoreau, Pema Chödrön, Albert Einstein and others

Wisdom is the reward you get for a lifetime of listening when you’d have preferred to talk. – Doug Larson

Experience is not what happens to you; it’s what you do with what happens to you. – Aldous Huxley

By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest. – Confucius

We should not judge people by their peak of excellence; but by the distance they have traveled from the point where they started. – Henry Ward Beecher

To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself. – Thich Nhat Hanh

The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook. – William James

In front of window - wise quote by Pema Chodron

Vindu Photo (Creative Commons BY-NC-ND)

Nobody can give you wiser advice than yourself. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

If we judge others, it is because we are judging something in ourselves of which we are unaware. – John A. Sandford

If you only have a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail. – Abraham Maslow

It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see. – Henry David Thoreau

Silence is a source of great strength. – Lao Tzu

Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one. – Albert Einstein

There’s a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in. – Leonard Cohen

The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails. – William Arthur Ward

Nothing goes right on the outside when nothing is going right on the inside. – Matthieu Ricard

Our ability to reach unity in diversity will be the beauty and the test of our civilization. – Gandhi

I’d rather regret the things I’ve done than regret the things I haven’t done. – Lucille Ball

Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions. – Dalai Lama XIV

The invariable mark of wisdom is to see the miraculous in the common. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

If we take care of the means, we are bound to reach the end sooner or later. When once we have grasped this point, final victory is beyond question. Whatever difficulties we encounter, whatever apparent reverses we sustain, we may not give up the quest for truth. – Gandhi

My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness. – Dalai Lama XIV

Wisdom is knowing what to do next, skill is knowing how to do it, and virtue is doing it. – David Starr Jordan

Wise man - quotation by Suddhananda

image © Caras Ionut

Children, old people, vagabonds laugh easily and heartily: they have nothing to lose and hope for little. In renunciation lies a delicious taste of simplicity and deep peace. – Matthieu Ricard

Suffering begins to dissolve when we can question the belief or the hope that there’s anywhere to hide. – Pema Chödrön

We need a repeated discipline, a genuine training, in order to let go of our old habits of mind and to find and sustain a new way of seeing. – Jack Kornfield

Knowledge does not mean mastering a great quantity of different information, but understanding the nature of mind. This knowledge can penetrate each one of our thoughts and illuminate each one of our perceptions. – Matthieu Ricard

If one were truly aware of the value of human life, to waste it blithely on distractions and the pursuit of vulgar ambitions would be the height of confusion. – Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

Security is an illusion. Embrace groundless groundedness.

When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don’t adjust the goals, adjust the action steps. – Confucius

Humility does not mean believing oneself to be inferior, but to be freed from self-importance. It is a state of natural simplicity which is in harmony with our true nature and allows us to taste the freshness of the present moment. – Matthieu Ricard

An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. – Gandhi

Cynicism is not realistic and tough. It’s unrealistic and kind of cowardly because it means you don’t have to try. – Peggy Noonan

Woman on boat - Words of wisdom quotes - Socrates quotation

image © Caras Ionut

Do not encumber your mind with useless thoughts. What good does it do to brood on the past or anticipate the future? Remain in the simplicity of the present moment. – Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

Never give up on yourself. Then you will never give up on others. – Pema Chödrön

The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of his wisdom but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind. – Khalil Gibran

The cautious seldom err. – Confucius

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