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published: 12/28/12
updated: 2/14/14

Taoism Quotes




Quotes from Lao Tzu

"A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving."

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"A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves."

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"All difficult things have their origin in that which is easy, and great things in that which is small."

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"At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want."

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"Be Content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you."

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"Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage."

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"Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step."

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"He who controls others may be powerful, but he who has mastered himself is mightier still."

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"He who does not trust enough, Will not be trusted."

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"He who knows others is wise. He who knows himself is enlightened."

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"Health is the greatest possession. Contentment is the greatest treasure. Confidence is the greatest friend. Non-being is the greatest joy."

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"I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures."

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"If you realize that all things change, there is nothing you will try to hold on to. If you are not afraid of dying, there is nothing you cannot achieve."

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"If you would take, you must first give, this is the beginning of intelligence."

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"Love is of all passions the strongest, for it attacks simultaneously the head, the heart and the senses."

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"Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished."

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"The career of a sage is of two kinds: He is either honored by all in the world, Like a flower waving its head, Or else he disappears into the silent forest."

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"The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step."




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"The sage does not hoard. The more he helps others, the more he benefits himself, The more he gives to others, the more he gets himself. The Way of Heaven does one good but never does one harm. The Way of the sage is to act but not to compete."

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"The softest things in the world overcome the hardest things in the world."

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"The wicked leader is he who the people despise. The good leader is he who the people revere. The great leader is he who the people say, 'We did it ourselves.' "

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"Those who have knowledge, don't predict. Those who predict, don't have knowledge."

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"To know yet to think that one does not know is best; Not to know yet to think that one knows will lead to difficulty. – Lao Tzu To lead people walk behind them."

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"To love someone deeply gives you strength. Being loved by someone deeply gives you courage."

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"To realize that you do not understand is a virtue; Not to realize that you do not understand is a defect."

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"To see things in the seed, that is genius."

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"To the mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders."

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"Treat those who are good with goodness, and also treat those who are not good with goodness. Thus goodness is attained. Be honest to those who are honest, and be also honest to those who are not honest. Thus honesty is attained."

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"When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be."

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When you are content to be simply yourself and don't compare or compete, everybody will respect you."

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"Without stirring abroad, One can know the whole world; Without looking out of the window One can see the way of heaven. The further one goes The less one knows."

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