Lao Tze was an ancient Chinese philosopher and writer. He is the reputed author of the Tao Te Ching. Here we have shared Lao Tzu quotes on love, life, change, nature, self-motivational, and inspiration.
Lao Tze was born in the 6th century – 4th century BC in Chujen village, State of Chu and died on Unknown, 6th century – 4th century BC. His father’s name Xiantian Empress and his mother’s name, Li Jing.
Lao Tzu quotes
“When men lost their understanding of the Tao, intelligence came along, bringing hypocrisy with it.” – Lao Tzu
“Become totally empty.
Quiet the restlessness of the mind
only then will you witness everything unfolding from emptiness.” – Lao Tzu
“Go to the people. Live with them, learn from them, love them.” – Lao Tzu
“Health is the greatest possession. Contentment is the greatest treasure. Confidence is the greatest friend.” – Lao Tzu
“Our enemies are not demons, but human beings like ourselves.” – Lao Tzu
“As soon as you have made a thought, laugh at it.” – Lao Tzu
“When goodness is lost there is morality.” – Lao Tzu
“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.” – Lao Tzu
“The wise man does not lay up his own treasures.
The more he gives to others,
the more he has for his own.” – Lao Tzu
“Life and death are one thread, the same line viewed from different sides.” – Lao Tzu
“When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everyone will respect you.” – Lao Tzu
“Accomplish but do not boast, accomplish without the show, accomplish without arrogance, accomplish without grabbing, accomplish without forcing.” – Lao Tzu
“A leader is best
When people barely know he exists
Of a good leader, who talks little,
When his work is done, his aim fulfilled,
They will say, ‘We did this ourselves.” – Lao Tzu
“Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power.” – Lao Tzu
“To understand the limitation of things, desire them.” – Lao Tzu
“Loss is not as bad as wanting more.” – Lao Tzu
“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.” – Lao Tzu
“A scholar who cherishes the love of comfort is not fit to be deemed a scholar.” – 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
“Composure is the ruler of instability.” – Lao Tzu
“Because one believes in oneself, one doesn’t try to convince others. Because one is content with oneself, one doesn’t need others’ approval. Because one accepts oneself, the whole world accepts him or her.” – Lao Tzu
“If you are depressed you are living in the past.
“Colors blind the eye
Sounds deafen the ear.
Flavors numb the taste.
Thoughts weaken the mind.
Desires wither the heart.” – Lao Tzu
“He who obtains has little. He who scatters has much.” – Lao Tzu
“It is better to do one’s own duty, however defective it may be than to follow the duty of another, however, well one may perform it. He who does his duty as his own nature reveals it never sins.” – Lao Tzu
“The hard and mighty lie beneath the ground While the tender and weak dance on the breeze above.” – Lao Tzu
“Do you imagine the universe is agitated? Go into the desert at night and look at the stars. This practice should answer the question.” – Lao Tzu
“If I had just a little bit of wisdom I should walk the great path and fear only straying from it.” – Lao Tzu
“Ambition has one heel nailed in well, though she stretches her fingers to touch the heavens.” – Lao Tzu
“Knowledge is a treasure, but the practice is the key to it.” – Lao Tzu
“The key to growth is the introduction of higher dimensions of consciousness into our awareness.” – Lao Tzu
“When the student is ready the teacher will appear. When the student is truly ready… The teacher will disappear.” – Lao Tzu
“What is firmly rooted cannot be pulled out.” – Lao Tzu
“Hope and fear are both phantoms that arise from thinking of the self. When we don’t see the self as self, what do we have to fear?” – Lao Tzu
“The softest things in the world overcome the hardest things in the world. Through this, I know the advantage of taking no action.” – Lao Tzu
“One who is too insistent on his own views finds few to agree with him.” – Lao Tzu
“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” – Lao Tzu
“Do your work, then step back. The only path to serenity.” – Lao Tzu
“Be like water.” – Lao Tzu
“Love is of all the passions the strongest, for it attacks simultaneously the head, the heart, and the senses.” – Lao Tzu
“When there is no desire, all things are at peace.” – Lao Tzu
“There is no greater danger than underestimating your opponent.” – Lao Tzu
“I have three precious things which I hold fast and prize. The first is gentleness; the second is frugality; the third is humility, which keeps me from putting myself before others. Be gentle and you can be bold; be frugal and you can be liberal; avoid putting yourself before others and you can become a leader among men.” – Lao Tzu
“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.” – Lao Tzu
“The more laws and order are made prominent, the more thieves and robbers there will be.” – Lao Tzu
“He who knows he has enough is rich. Perseverance is a sign of will power. He who stays where he is enduring. To die but not to perish is to be eternally present.” – Lao Tzu
“Every step is on the path.” – Lao Tzu
“There is no disaster greater than not being content; there is no misfortune greater than being covetous.” – Lao Tzu
“By letting go it all gets done.” – Lao Tzu
“In dwelling, live close to the ground. In thinking, keep to the simple. In conflict, be fair and generous. In governing, don’t try to control. At work, do what you enjoy. In family life, be completely present.” – Lao Tzu
“If there is to be peace in the world,
There must be peace in the nations.
If there is to be peace in the nations,
There must be peace in the cities
If there is to be peace in the cities,
There must be peace between neighbors.
If there is to be peace between neighbors,
There must be peace in the home.
If there is to be peace in the home,
There must be peace in the heart.” – Lao Tzu
“I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures.” – Lao Tzu
“If lightning is the anger of the gods, then the gods are concerned mostly about trees.” – Lao Tzu
“Nature is not human hearted.” – Lao Tzu
“He who controls others may be powerful, but he who has mastered himself is mightier still.” – Lao Tzu
“Water is fluid, soft, and yielding. But water will wear away rock, which is rigid and cannot yield. As a rule, whatever is fluid, soft, and yielding will overcome whatever is rigid and hard. This is another paradox: what is soft is strong.” – Lao Tzu
“Great acts are made up of small deeds.” – Lao Tzu
“If you try to change it, you will ruin it. Try to hold it, and you will lose it.” – Lao Tzu
“The difficult problems in life Always start off being simple. Great affairs always start off being small.” – Lao Tzu
“Shape clay into a vessel;
It is the space within that makes it useful.
Cut doors and windows for a room;
It is the holes which make it useful.
Therefore benefit comes from what is there;
Usefulness from what is not there.” – Lao Tzu
“Your own positive future begins at this moment. All you have is right now. Every goal is possible from here.” – Lao Tzu
“He who defends with love will be secure; Heaven will save him, and protect him with love.” – Lao Tzu
“Fill your bowl to the brim and it will spill. Keep sharpening your knife and it will blunt.” – Lao Tzu
“An over sharpened sword cannot last long. ” – Lao Tzu
“The world belongs to those who let go.” – Lao Tzu
“To be worn out is to be renewed.” – Lao Tzu
“He who acts spoils; he who grasps lets slip.” – Lao Tzu
“Be still. Stillness reveals the secrets of eternity.” – Lao Tzu
“Is it not through her selflessness that she is able to perfect herself?” – Lao Tzu
“The way to do is to be.” – Lao Tzu
“Give evil nothing to oppose and it will disappear by itself.” – Lao Tzu
“The Wise Man is square but not sharp, honest but not malign, straight but not severe, bright but not dazzling.” – Lao Tzu
“Respond to anger with virtue. Deal with difficulties while they are still easy. Handle the great while it is still small.” – Lao Tzu
“To hold, you must first open your hand. Let go.” – Lao Tzu
“Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.” – Lao Tzu
“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be a reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” – Lao Tzu
“The Tao is nowhere to be found. Yet it nourishes and completes all things.” – Lao Tzu
“Fame or integrity: which is more important? Money or happiness: which is more valuable? Successor failure: which is more destructive? If you look to others for fulfillment, you will never truly be fulfilled. If your happiness depends on money, you will never be happy with yourself. 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.” – Lao Tzu
“To see things in the seed, that is genius.” – Lao Tzu
“Watch your thoughts, they become your words; watch your words, they become your actions; watch your actions, they become your habits; watch your habits, they become your character; watch your character, it becomes your destiny.” – Lao Tzu
“Love is a decision – not an emotion!” – Lao Tzu
“A man with outward courage dares to die; a man with inner courage dares to live.” – Lao Tzu
“If you do not value rare treasures, you will stop others from stealing.” – Lao Tzu
“If you want to lead them you must place yourself behind them.” – Lao Tzu
“Not seeking, not expecting, she is present, and can welcome all things.” – Lao Tzu
“Respond intelligently even to unintelligent treatment.” – Lao Tzu
“The flexible are preserved unbroken. The bent becomes straight. The empty are filled. The exhaustion becomes renewed. The poor are enriched. The rich are confounded. Therefore the sage embraces the one. Because he doesn’t display himself, people can see his light. Because he has nothing to prove, people can trust his words. Because he doesn’t know who he is, people recognize themselves in him. Because he has no goal in mind, everything he does succeed. The old saying that the flexible are preserved unbroken is surely right! If you have truly attained wholeness, everything will flock to you.” – Lao Tzu
“If you are untrustworthy, people will not trust you.” – Lao Tzu
“The reason why the universe is eternal is that it does not live for itself; it gives life to others as it transforms.” – Lao Tzu
“Muddy water, let stand, becomes clear.” – Lao Tzu
“I do not concern myself with gods and spirits either good or evil nor do I serve any.” – Lao Tzu
“Doing nothing is better than being busy doing nothing.” – Lao Tzu
“The Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao.
The name that can be named is not the eternal name.
The nameless is the beginning of heaven and earth.
The name is the mother of ten thousand things.
Ever desireless, one can see the mystery.
Ever desiring, one can see the manifestations.
These two spring from the same source but differ in name;
this appears as darkness.
Darkness within darkness.
The gate to all mystery.” – Lao Tzu
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” – Lao Tzu
“So the unwanting soul
sees what’s hidden,
and the ever-wanting soul
sees only what it wants.” – Lao Tzu
“If you want to know me, look inside your heart.” – Lao Tzu
“Chanting is no more holy than listening to the murmur of a stream, counting prayer beads no more sacred than simply breathing, religious robes no more spiritual than work clothes.” – Lao Tzu
“Those who flow as life flows know they need no other force.” – Lao Tzu
“The truth is not always beautiful, nor beautiful words the truth.” – 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. Always be on the lookout for ways to turn a problem into an opportunity for success. Always be on the lookout for ways to nurture your dream.” – Lao Tzu
“He who knows that enough is enough will always have enough.”
“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings.” – Lao Tzu
“Would you like to save the world from the degradation and destruction it seems destined for? Then step away from shallow mass movements and quietly go to work on your own self-awareness. If you want to awaken all of humanity, then awaken all of yourself. If you want to eliminate the suffering in the world, then eliminate all that is dark and negative in yourself. Truly, the greatest gift you have to give is that of your own self-transformation.” – Lao Tzu
“If you understand others you are smart.
If you understand yourself you are illuminated.
If you overcome others you are powerful.
If you overcome yourself you have strength.
If you know how to be satisfied you are rich.
If you can act with vigor, you have a will.
If you don’t lose your objectives you can be long-lasting.
If you die without loss, you are eternal.” – Lao Tzu
“Time is a created thing. To say ‘I don’t have time’ is like saying, ‘I don’t want to.” – Lao Tzu
“Those who know do not speak. Those who speak do not know.” – Lao Tzu
“The flame that burns twice as bright burns half as long.” – Lao Tzu
“He who talks more is sooner exhausted.” – Lao Tzu
“Take care with the end as you do with the beginning.” – Lao Tzu
“To attain knowledge, add things every day. To attain wisdom, remove things every day.” – Lao Tzu
“Water is the softest thing, yet it can penetrate mountains and earth. This shows clearly the principle of softness overcoming hardness.” – Lao Tzu
“Act without expectation.” – Lao Tzu
“With few there is attainment. With much there is confusion.” – Lao Tzu
“When pure sincerity forms within, it is outwardly realized in other people’s hearts.” – Lao Tzu
“If you wish to be out front, then act as if you were behind.” – Lao Tzu
“When wealth and honors lead to arrogancy, this brings its evil on itself.” – Lao Tzu
“The heart that gives, gathers.” – Lao Tzu
“There is no illusion greater than fear.” – Lao Tzu
“Manifest plainness, Embrace simplicity, Reduce selfishness, Have few desires.” – Lao Tzu
“He who knows others is wise; he who knows himself is enlightened.” – Lao Tzu
“A violent wind does not last for a whole morning; a sudden rain does not last for the whole day.” – Lao Tzu
“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.” – Lao Tzu
“Because of a great love, one is courageous.” – Lao Tzu
“Governing a great nation is like cooking a small fish – too much handling will spoil it.” – Lao Tzu
“The way of heaven is to help and not harm.” – Lao Tzu
“Knowing how to yield is strength.” – Lao Tzu
“The road you can talk about is not the road you can walk on.” – Lao Tzu
“There is a time to live and a time to die but never to reject the moment.” – Lao Tzu
“Stop leaving and you will arrive. Stop searching and you will see. Stop running away and you will be found.” – Lao Tzu
“Everything under heaven is a sacred vessel and cannot be controlled. Trying to control leads to ruin. Trying to grasp, we lose. Allow your life to unfold naturally. Know that it too is a vessel of perfection. Just as you breathe in and breathe out, there is a time for being ahead and a time for being behind; a time for being in motion and a time for being at rest; a time for being vigorous and a time for being exhausted; a time for being safe and a time for being in danger.” – Lao Tzu
“Some lose yet to gain, others gain and yet lose.” – 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
“A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.” – Lao Tzu
“Ordinary men hate solitude. But the Master makes use of it, embracing his aloneness, realizing he is one with the whole universe.” – Lao Tzu
“Countless words count less than the silent balance between yin and yang.” – Lao Tzu
“Spring comes, and the grass grows by itself.” – Lao Tzu
“Just remain in the center; watching. And then forget that you are there.” – Lao Tzu
“It is better to leave a vessel unfilled than to attempt to carry it when it is full.” – Lao Tzu
“The further one goes, the less one knows.” – Lao Tzu
“To realize that you do not understand is a virtue; Not to realize that you do not understand is a defect.” – Lao Tzu
“Trying to control the future is like trying to take the master carpenter’s place. When you handle the master carpenter’s tools, chances are that you’ll cut your hand.” – Lao Tzu
“Do you have the patience to wait until your mud settles and the water is clear?” – Lao Tzu
“If a person seems wicked, do not cast him away. Awaken him with your words, elevate him with your deeds, repay his injury with your kindness. Do not cast him away; cast away his wickedness.” – Lao Tzu
“If the people must be ever fearful of death, then there will always be an executioner.” – Lao Tzu
“Do not conquer the world with force, for force only causes resistance. Thorns spring up when an army passes. Years of misery follow a great victory. Do only what needs to be done without using violence.” – Lao Tzu
“Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love.” – Lao Tzu
“Simulated disorder postulates perfect discipline; simulated fear postulates courage; simulated weakness postulates strength.” – Lao Tzu
“A bad man is a good man’s job.” – Lao Tzu
“To bear and not to own; to act and not lay claim; to do the work and let it go: for just letting it go is what makes it stay.” – Lao Tzu
“The master observes the world but trusts his inner vision. He allows things to come and go. He prefers what is within to what is without.” – Lao Tzu
“When the people of the world all know beauty as beauty, there arises the recognition of ugliness. When they all know the good as good, there arises the recognition of evil.” – Lao Tzu
“To a mind that is still the whole universe surrenders.” – Lao Tzu
“To know that you do not know is best.
To think you know when you do not is a disease.
Recognizing this disease as a disease is to be free of it.” – Lao Tzu
“The wise man is one who knows what he does not know.” – Lao Tzu
“Music in the soul can be heard by the universe.” – Lao Tzu
“What the caterpillar calls the end, the rest of the world calls a butterfly.” – Lao Tzu
“When you are at one with loss, the loss is experienced willingly.” – Lao Tzu
“Men are born soft and supple; dead they are stiff and hard. Plants are born tender and pliant; dead, they are brittle and dry. Thus whoever is stiff and inflexible is a disciple of death. Whoever is soft and yielding is a disciple of life. The hard and stiff will be broken. The soft and supple will prevail.” – Lao Tzu
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