Lao Tzu Quotes on Life, Love: Laozi Quotes

Laozi(“Old Master”) also known as Lao-Tzu or Lao-Tze was born on (6th–5th century BCE Zhou Dynasty). He is an ancient Chinese philosopher, writer & author of Tao Te Ching(a famous Chinese classic text). He is considered to be father of Chinese Taoism. Lao Tzu is considered a contemporary of Confucius and a central figure in Chinese culture. The below collection of 165 Lao Tzu quotes will inspire and enlighten your life.

Inspirational Lao Tzu Quotes

  1. “Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment.”
  2. “Mastering others is strength. Mastering yourself is true power.”
  3. “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.”
  4. “Stop leaving and you will arrive. Stop searching and you will see. Stop running away and you will be found.”
  5. “Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.”
  6.  “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 quotes leadership
  7. “Stop thinking and end your problems.”
  8. “I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures.”
  9. “If the Great Way perishes there will morality and duty. When cleverness and knowledge arise great lies will flourish. When relatives fall out with one another there will be filial duty and love. When states are in confusion there will be faithful servants.”
  10. “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.”
  11. “He who knows himself is enlightened.”
  12. “He who knows that enough is enough will always have enough.”
  13. Lao Tzu quotes
  14. “New beginnings are disguised as painful endings.”
  15. “Manifest plainness, embrace simplicity, reduce selfishness, have few desires.”
  16. “In dwelling, be close to the land. In meditation, go deep in the heart. In dealing with others, be gentle and kind. In speech, be true. In ruling, be just. In business, be competent. In action, watch the timing.”
  17. “If you correct your mind, the rest of your life will fall into place.”
  18. “Make your heart like a lake with a calm still surface and great depths of kindness.”    , Lao Tzu quotes kindness
  19. “Great acts are made up of small deeds.”
  20. “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.”
  21. “He who is contented is rich.”
  22. “When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.”
  23. “In the world there is nothing more submissive and weak than water. Yet for attacking that which is hard and strong nothing can surpass it.”
  24.  “To a mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders.”
  25. “The heart that gives, gathers.”
  26. “When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.”
  27. “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.”
  28. “Those who know do not speak. Those who speak do not know.”
  29. “Confidence is the greatest friend.”
  30. “When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.”
  31. “Silence is a source of great strength.”
  32. “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”  , Lao Tzu quotes being deeply loved
  33. “Be still like a mountain, and flow like a great river.”
  34. “Act without expectation.”
  35. “Use the light that is within you to revert to your natural clearness of sight.”
  36.  “Health is the greatest possession. Contentment is the greatest treasure. Confidence is the greatest friend. Non-being is the greatest joy.”
  37. “Empty yourself of everything – let the mind become still.”
  38. “By letting go, it all gets done.”
  39. Lao Tzu quotes
  40.  “I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures.”
  41. “A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.”  , Lao Tzu quotes travel
  42. “When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.”
  43.  “Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.”
  44. “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.”
  45. “Those who have knowledge, don’t predict. Those who predict, don’t have knowledge.”
  46. “All difficult things have their origin in that which is easy, and great things in that which is small.”
  47. “If you would take, you must first give, this is the beginning of intelligence.”
  48.  “A scholar who cherishes the love of comfort is not fit to be deemed a scholar.”
  49.  “Anticipate the difficult by managing the easy.”
  50. “At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.”
  51.  “Be the chief but never the lord.”
  52. “Because of a great love, one is courageous.”
  53. “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”
  54. “By letting it go it all gets done. The world is won by those who let it go. But when you try and try. The world is beyond the winning.”
  55.  “For the wise man looks into space and he knows there is no limited dimensions.”
  56. “From caring comes courage.”
  57. “From wonder into wonder existence opens.”
  58. “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”
  59. “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 quotes watch your thoughts
  60. “Govern a great nation as you would cook a small fish. Do not overdo it.”
  61. “Governing a great nation is like cooking a small fish – too much handling will spoil it.”
  62. “Great acts are made up of small deeds.”
  63. “He who conquers others is strong; He who conquers himself is mighty.”
  64. “Great indeed is the sublimity of the Creative, to which all beings owe their beginning and which permeates all heaven.”
  65. “He who is contented is rich.”
  66.  “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.”
  67. “He who does not trust enough, Will not be trusted.”
  68. “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.”
  69. ”He who controls others may be powerful, but he who has mastered himself is mightier still.”
  70.  “Fill your bowl to the brim and it will spill. Keep sharpening your knife and it will blunt.”
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  72. “Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love.”
  73. “He who talks more is sooner exhausted.”
  74. “Health is the greatest possession. Contentment is the greatest treasure. Confidence is the greatest friend. Non-being is the greatest joy.”
  75. “He who obtains has little. He who scatters has much.”
  76. “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.”
  77. “He who knows, does not speak. He who speaks, does not know.”
  78. “How could man rejoice in victory and delight in the slaughter of men?”
  79. “I do not concern myself with gods and spirits either good or evil nor do I serve any.”
  80.  “If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.”
  81.  “Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is Enlightenment.”
  82. “If you would take, you must first give, this is the beginning of intelligence.”
  83. “Life and death are one thread, the same line viewed from different sides.”  , Lao Tzu quotes on life
  84.  “Manifest plainness, embrace simplicity, reduce selfishness, have few desires.”
  85. “Mastering others is strength. Mastering yourself is true power.”
  86. “Music in the soul can be heard by the universe.”
  87. “Do not look only at yourself, and you will see much. Do not justify yourself, and you will be distinguished. Do not brag, and you will have merit. Do not be prideful, and your work will endure.”
  88. “Few things under heaven bring more benefit than the lessons learned from silence and the actions taken without striving.”
  89. “Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.”  , Lao Tzu quotes on nature
  90. “Nature is not human hearted.”
  91. “Nothing is softer or more flexible than water, yet nothing can resist it.”  , Lao Tzu quotes water
  92. “Of all that is good, sublimity is supreme. Succeeding is the coming together of all that is beautiful. Furtherance is the agreement of all that is just. Perseverance is the foundation of all actions.”
  93. “One cannot reflect in streaming water. Only those who know internal peace can give it to others.”
  94. “One who is too insistent on his own views, finds few to agree with him.”
  95. “When virtue is lost, benevolence appears, when benevolence is lost right conduct appears, when right conduct is lost, expedience appears. Expediency is the mere shadow of right and truth; it is the beginning of disorder.”
  96.  “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.”
  97. “Mastering others is strength, mastering yourself is true power.”
  98. “The True Person benefits yet expects no reward, does the work and moves on. There is no desire to be considered better than others.”
  99. “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.”
  100. “Respond intelligently even to unintelligent treatment.”
  101. Lao Tzu quotes images Lao Tzu quotes
  102. “Simulated disorder postulates perfect discipline; simulated fear postulates courage; simulated weakness postulates strength.”
  103. “Surrender your self-interest. Love others as much as you love yourself. Then you can be entrusted with all things under heaven.”
  104. “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.”
  105. “The higher the sun arises, the less shadow doth he cast; even so the greater is the goodness, the less doth it covet praise; yet cannot avoid its rewards in honors.”

    More Lao Tzu Quotes

  106. “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”
  107.  “The more laws and order are made prominent, the more thieves and robbers there will be.”
  108. “The people are hungry: It is because those in authority eat up too much in taxes.”
  109. “The power of intuitive understanding will protect you from harm until the end of your days.”
  110. “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.”
  111. “The snow goose need not bathe to make itself white. Neither need you do anything but be yourself.”
  112. “The softest things in the world overcome the hardest things in the world.”
  113. “Act without striving. Work without interfering. Find the flavor in what is flavorless.”
  114. “Ambition has one heel nailed in well, though she stretch her fingers to touch the heavens.”
  115. “An ant on the move does more than a dozing ox.”
  116. “The True Person governs by emptying the heart of desire and filling the belly with food, weakening ambitions and strengthening bones.”
  117. “The True Person avoids extremes, self-indulgence, and extravagance.”
  118. “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.’”  , Lao Tzu quotes leader
  119. “The wise man does not lay up his own treasures. The more he gives to others, the more he has for his own.”
  120. “The words of truth are always paradoxical.”
  121.  “The ten thousand things flourish and then each returns to the root from which it came. Returning to the root is stillness. Through stillness each fulfils its destiny.”  , Lao Tzu quotes destiny
  122. “Those who have knowledge don’t predict. Those who predict, don’t have knowledge.”
  123. “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.”
  124. “To lead people walk behind them.”
  125. “To realize that you do not understand is a virtue; Not to realize that you do not understand is a defect.”
  126. “To see things in the seed, that is genius.”
  127. “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.”
  128. “Love is of all passions the strongest, for it attacks simultaneously the head, the heart and the senses.”  , Lao Tzu quotes on love
  129. “Man’s enemies are not demons, but human beings like himself.”
  130. “To the mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders.”
  131. “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.”
  132. “Truthful words are not beautiful; beautiful words are not truthful. Good words are not persuasive; persuasive words are not good.”
  133. “Violence, even well intentioned, always rebounds upon oneself.”
  134. “Weapons are not proper instruments for gentle people; they use them only when they have no other choice. Peace and quiet are what they value. They do not glory in victory.”
  135. “What is well rooted cannot be pulled up. What is firmly grasped will not slip loose. It will be honored from generation to generation.”
  136.  “There is no greater offence than harboring desires. There is no greater disaster than discontent. There is no greater misfortune than wanting more.”
  137. “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.”
  138.  “When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everyone will respect you.”
  139. “The more laws that are written, the more criminals are produced.”
  140. “When the student is ready the teacher will appear. When the student is truly ready… The teacher will Disappear.”
  141. “To attain knowledge, add things every day. To attain wisdom, remove things every day.”
  142. “By letting go it all gets done.”
  143. Lao Tzu quotes
  144. “The hard and mighty lie beneath the ground. While the tender and weak dance on the breeze above.”
  145. “New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings.”
  146. “If you look to others for fulfillment, you will never be truly fulfilled.”
  147. “To lead people, walk behind them.”
  148. “He who knows much about others may be learned, but he who understands himself is more intelligent. He who controls others may be powerful, but he who has mastered himself is mightier still.”
  149. “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.”
  150. “Stop thinking, and end your problems.”
  151. “Peace is our original state.”
  152. “What the caterpillar calls the end, the rest of the world calls a butterfly.”
  153. “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.”
  154. “The best fighter is never angry.”
  155. “When a nation is filled with strife, then do patriots flourish.”
  156. “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. In work, do what you enjoy. In family life, be completely present.”
  157. “Knowing others is to be clever. Knowing yourself is to be enlightened. Overcoming others requires force. Overcoming yourself requires strength.”
  158. “When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.”
  159. “If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.”
  160. “Love is a decision. Not an emotion.”
  161. “Time is a created thing. To say “I don’t have time,” is like saying, “I don’t want to”.”  , Lao Tzu quotes about time
  162. “Who acts in stillness finds stillness in his life.”
  163. “When the best leader’s work is done the people say, “We did it ourselves.”
  164. “A man with outward courage dares to die: a man with inner courage dares to live.”
  165. “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”

Some facts about Lao Tzu:-

  • Lao Tzu really never wanted to pen down his book Tao Te Ching
  • It is believed Lao Tzu was born when his mother wished upon a falling star & he was in her womb for around 62 years
  • Some also believed he was reborn in 13 incarnations & Lao Tzu was the last one
  • “Supremely Mysterious and Primordial Emperor” is the title granted to him in the Tang Dynasty
  • In religious figure he is also worshipped under the name “Supreme Old Lord”

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