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Lao Tzu quotes page 1

Lao Tzu was born in the 6th century BCE. He is known as a philosopher as well as the author of the Tao Te Ching, more commonly referred to as Laozi. Many accredit him to be the father of Taoism, in which is revered as a deity. His work is now associated with many anti-authoritarian movements. The earliest reference to this great philosopher is found in the Records of the Grand Historian, where it is claimed that Lao Tzu was a contemporary of Confucius. In many accounts, Lao Tzu is said to have worked as the Keeper of the Archives for the royal court of Zhou. Additionally, he was a great scholar, which allowed him to gain access to works he wouldn't have otherwise been able to view. Although he never received a formal education, Lao Tzu was largely self-taught and shared his knowledge with many students and his disciples. In his book, Tao Te Ching, Lao Tzu describes Tao as the ideal form of all existence. He speaks of people having free wills, and thus they are able to alter their lives and nature. However, if they act unnaturally, they must return to harmony with the Tao. He emphasized seeking the calm state of "wu wei", which is freedom from desires. This has been repeatedly used to defend political views where keeping the people "ignorant" is a priority. In fact, Lao Tzu is credited with encouraging rulers to do just this. Lao Tzu is still widely-read and quoted today by people of all backgrounds and nationalities.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
Lao Tzu

When you are content to be simply yourself and don't compare or compete, everyone will
respect you.
Lao Tzu

Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.
Lao Tzu

Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment.
Lao Tzu

If you are depressed, you are living in the past.
If you are anxious, you are living in the future.
If you are at peace, you are living in the present.
Lao Tzu

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

Stop thinking, and end your problems.
Lao Tzu

As for the best leaders, the people do not notice their existence. The next best, the people
honour and praise. The next, the people fear and the next, the people hate. When the best
leader's work is done, the people say "We did it ourselves."
Lao Tzu

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

Seek not happiness too greedily, and be not fearful of unhappiness.
Lao Tzu

A terrace nine stories high begins with a pile of earth.
Lao Tzu

Be content with what you have, rejoice in the way things are. When you realise there is
nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.
Lao Tzu

People in their handlings of affairs often fail when they are about to succeed. If one remains
as careful at the end as he was at the beginning, there will be no failure.
Lao Tzu

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

Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength;
mastering yourself is true power. If you realize that you have enough, you are truly rich.
Lao Tzu

The way of heaven has no favorites. It is always with the good man.
Lao Tzu

He who knows, does not speak. He who speaks, does not know.
Lao Tzu

The sage does not accumulate for himself. The more he uses for others, the more he has
himself. The more he gives to others, the more he has himself.
Lao Tzu

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

Can you deal with the most vital matters by letting events take their course? Can you step
back from your own mind and thus understand all things?
Lao Tzu

Go to the people. Live with them, learn from them, love them.
Lao Tzu

There is no disaster greater than not being content. There is no misfortune greater than
being covetous.
Lao Tzu

The moral man does something, and when no one responds he rolls up his sleeves and uses
force.
Lao Tzu

Simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures. Simple in actions
and thoughts, you return to the source of being. Patient with both friends and enemies, you
accord with the way things are. Compassionate toward yourself, you reconcile all beings in
the world.
Lao Tzu

The master observes the world but trusts his inner vision. He allows things to come and go.
His heart is open as the sky.
Lao Tzu

Anticipate the difficult by managing the easy.
Lao Tzu

What the caterpillar calls the end, the rest of the world calls a butterfly.
Lao Tzu

Music in the soul can be heard by the universe.
Lao Tzu

Be careful what you water your dreams with. Water them with worry and fear and you will
produce weeds that choke the life from your dream. Water them with optimism and solutions
and you will cultivate success.
Lao Tzu

Respond intelligently even to unintelligent treatment.
Lao Tzu

To the mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders.
Lao Tzu

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

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are
a leader.
Lao Tzu

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

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