Lao Tzu Quotes

Inspirational and motivating sayings from Lao Tzu.

Lao Tzu, proper name Li Er, courtesy name Boyang, was an ancient Chinese philosopher and writer. He is the reputed author of the Tao Te Ching, the founder of philosophical Taoism, and a deity in religious Taoism and traditional Chinese religions.

Here is a selection of Lao Tzu most famous quotes. Inspirational and motivating sayings from Lao Tzu.


Famous Lao Tzu Quotes

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

― Lao Tzu

The truth is not always beautiful, nor beautiful words the truth.

― Lao Tzu

Simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures.

― Lao Tzu

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

― Lao Tzu

Time is a created thing. To say 'I don't have time,' is like saying, 'I don't want to.

― Lao Tzu

One who believes in himself has no need to convince others.

― Lao Tzu

The best fighter is never angry.

― Lao Tzu

Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power.

― Lao Tzu

A man with outward courage dares to die; a man with inner courage dares to live.

― Lao Tzu

Let your workings remain a mystery. Just show people your results.

― 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 reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.

― 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

Those who are right do not argue. Those who argue are not right.

― Lao Tzu

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.

― Lao Tzu

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

― Lao Tzu

Do you have the patience to wait until your mud settles and the water is clear?

― Lao Tzu

Those who know do not speak. Those who speak do not know.

― 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

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

― 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

Silence is a source of Great Strength.

― Lao Tzu

The flame that burns Twice as bright burns half as long.

― Lao Tzu

If you try to change it, you will ruin it. Try to hold it, and you will lose it.

― Lao Tzu

Stop thinking, and end your problems.

― Lao Tzu

To attain knowledge, add things everyday. To attain wisdom, remove things every day.

― Lao Tzu

Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love.

― Lao Tzu



Lao Tzu Inspirational Quotes

Doing nothing is better than being busy doing nothing.

― Lao Tzu

Manifest plainness, Embrace simplicity, Reduce selfishness, Have few desires.

― Lao Tzu

The snow goose need not bathe to make itself white. Neither need you do anything but be yourself.

― Lao Tzu

Act without expectation.

― Lao Tzu

If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.

― Lao Tzu

Respond intelligently even to unintelligent treatment.

― 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

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

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

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

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.

― Lao Tzu

To know that you do not know is the 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

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

Water is the softest thing, yet it can penetrate mountains and earth. This shows clearly the principle of softness overcoming hardness.

― Lao Tzu

To understand the limitation of things, desire them.

― Lao Tzu

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

― Lao Tzu

The wise man is one who, knows, what he does not know.

― 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

Loss is not as bad as wanting more.

― Lao Tzu

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

― Lao Tzu

Knowledge is a treasure, but practice is the key to it.

― Lao Tzu

Give evil nothing to oppose and it will disappear by itself.

― Lao Tzu

The further one goes, the less one knows.

― Lao Tzu

By letting go it all gets done.

― 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

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

― Lao Tzu

Accomplish but do not boast, accomplish without show, accomplish without arrogance, accomplish without grabbing, accomplish without forcing.

― Lao Tzu

Stop leaving and you will arrive. Stop searching and you will see. Stop running away and you will be found.

― Lao Tzu

All streams flow to the sea because it is lower than they are. humility gives it its power. if you want to govern the people, you must place yourself below them. if you want to lead the people, you must learn how to follow them.

― Lao Tzu

Do you have the patience to wait Till your mud settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving Till the right action arises by itself?

― Lao Tzu



Lao Tzu Motivational Quotes

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

Your own positive future begins in this moment. All you have is right now. Every goal is possible from here.

― Lao Tzu

When there is no desire, all things are at peace.

― Lao Tzu

He who knows others is wise; he who knows himself is enlightened.

― Lao Tzu

As soon as you have made a thought, laugh at it.

― Lao Tzu

There is no greater danger than underestimating your opponent.

― Lao Tzu

Because of a great love, one is courageous.

― Lao Tzu

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

― Lao Tzu

If you correct your mind, the rest of your life will fall into place.

― Lao Tzu

When people see some things as beautiful, other things become ugly. When people see some things as good, other things become bad.

― 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

Success is as dangerous as failure. Hope is as hollow as fear.

― Lao Tzu

Trying to understand is like straining through muddy water. Have the patience to wait! Be still and allow the mud to settle.

― Lao Tzu

Do your work, then step back. The only path to serenity.

― Lao Tzu

Love is a decision - not an emotion!

― Lao Tzu

There is a time to live and a time to die but never to reject the moment.

― Lao Tzu



Wisdom from Lao Tzu

Those who flow as life flows know they need no other force.

― 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

When the student is ready the teacher will appear. When the student is truly ready... The teacher will Disappear.

― Lao Tzu

Health is the greatest possession. Contentment is the greatest treasure. Confidence is the greatest friend.

― Lao Tzu

True words aren't eloquent; eloquent words aren't true. Wise men don't need to prove their point; men who need to prove their point aren't wise.

― Lao Tzu

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.

― 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

There is no illusion greater than fear.

― Lao Tzu

Great acts are made up of small deeds.

― Lao Tzu

The key to growth is the introduction of higher dimensions of consciousness into our awareness.

― Lao Tzu

Perfection is the willingness to be imperfect.

― Lao Tzu

An ant on the move does more than a dozing ox.

― Lao Tzu

One who is too insistent on his own views finds few to agree with him.

― Lao Tzu

Anticipate the difficult by managing the easy.

― Lao Tzu

New Beginnings are often disguised as painful endings.

― Lao Tzu

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

― Lao Tzu

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

― Lao Tzu

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

― Lao Tzu

If you wish to be out front, then act as if you were behind.

― Lao Tzu

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

― Lao Tzu

One can not reflect in streaming water. Only those who know internal peace can give it to others.

― Lao Tzu


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