Ancient Chinese Proverbs Are as Applicable Today as They Were Thousands of Years Ago

By:  buzz-of-the-orient  •  8 months ago  •  12 comments

Ancient Chinese Proverbs Are as Applicable Today as They Were Thousands of Years Ago

Ancient Chinese Proverbs Are as Applicable Today as They Were Thousands of Years Ago

china proverb 1.png

Presently, I'm reading a story in which there was a twisted "Chinese-type" proverb...

"Do not ask a fish how to cross a desert."

...and it made me think of a couple of real Chinese proverbs I have known for a long time and agree completely with their wisdom. These two are as applicable today as they may have been thousands of years ago.

"Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."

"Tell me, I forget. Show me, I remember. Involve me, I understand."

So I sought out some more that I thought were wise, such as these. I follow them with my comment in brackets as to how I feel they are just as applicable now as there were long ago in another culture.

"Dig the well before you are thirsty." (A good way to illustrate the words 'Be prepared'.)

"Do not remove a fly from your friend's forehead with a hatchet." (One should be careful of being overzealous.)

"He who strikes the first blow admits he's lost the argument." (As in thenewstalkers, the one who starts using ad hominem to insult the person he is debating with, has lost the debate.)

"Not until just before dawn do people sleep best; not until people get old do they become wise." (This is similar to the German proverb that we grow old too soon and get smart too late.)

"To know the road ahead, ask those coming back." (Learn from others before trying to make your own way.)

"The palest ink is better than the best memory." (Just happened with me. I had to go back to the book I was reading just two hours ago to reread the proverb about a fish and the desert that I quoted above.)

Can you think of any special Chinese proverbs that are as applicable to us today as they may have been thousands of years ago? If so, can you quote them and explain why they are applicable today?



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Buzz of the Orient
1  author  Buzz of the Orient    8 months ago

Let's see some ancient Chinese proverbs that apply today.

Bob Nelson
2  Bob Nelson    8 months ago

“When the winds of change blow, some people build walls and others build windmills.”

Dean Moriarty
3  Dean Moriarty    8 months ago


4  Dulay    8 months ago

Stare at the profit and step in the pitfall

Split Personality
5  Split Personality    8 months ago

A closed mind is like a closed book; just a block of wood

Split Personality
6  Split Personality    8 months ago

If you want happiness for an hour; take a nap.

If you want happiness for a day; go fishing.

If you want happiness for a month; get married.

If you want happiness for a year; inherit a fortune.

Buzz of the Orient
6.1  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Split Personality @6    8 months ago

Good one, SP.

7  lennylynx    8 months ago

Man who sleep in middle of road wake up with run-down feeling.

8  sixpick    8 months ago

“True knowledge is when one knows the limitations of one’s knowledge.” (A lot of people have a lot of knowledge, but being able to know the difference between knowledge and opinion is the real measurement of true knowledge.)

Buzz of the Orient
8.1  author  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  sixpick @8    8 months ago

At what point does a person realize that they have knowledge of something?  In my opinion, it is when they finally realize that they don't really understand something, because it takes knowledge to realize and admit it. I think there is a Chinese proverb about that as well.  Why do I think this?  It goes back to the days when I was studying for my law exams, and I was an inveterate crammer - I would wait until the last minute to study because I thought I was smart.  Eventually, in the middle of the night before the exam, cramming away, I came to the realization of the fact that I didn't understand the subject at all, and that was the beginning of my understanding it.

9  sixpick    8 months ago

“Control your emotions or they will control you.”  (One of the most important lessons in life.  Be master of your emotions, not the other way around.)


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