30 Quotes from Confucius that still resonate today


The philosophy of Confucius, also known as Confucianism emphasizes morality, correctness, justice and sincerity to live a better life.


The Chinese teacher, editor, politician and philosopher of the spring and autumn period of Chinese history, Confucius may date back to the 6th and 5th centuries BCE, but his ideas still resonate today, and Confucianism is still an ethical way of thought adopted by many thinkers around the world. Here is a selection of our favourite quotes from the master:

1. "It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop."

2. "Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."

3. "Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it."

4. "Wheresoever you go, go with all your heart."

5. "Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves."

6. "Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life."

7. "The man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones."

8. "The Golden Rule: Treat others as one's self would wish to be treated."

9. “Your life is what your thoughts make it.”

10. “The journey with a 1000 miles begins with one step.”

11. “All people are the same; only their habits differ.”

12. “If you are the smartest person in the room, then you are in the wrong room.”

13. “When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don’t adjust the goals, adjust the action steps.”

14. “Respect yourself and others will respect you.”

15. “If you make a mistake and do not correct it, this is called a mistake.”

16. “The superior man is distressed by the limitations of his ability; he is not distressed by the fact that men do not recognize the ability that he has.”

17. “When anger rises, think of the consequences.”

18. “To know what you know and what you do not know, that is true knowledge.”

19. “The object of the superior man is truth.”

20. “If you think in terms of a year, plant a seed; if in terms of ten years, plant trees; if in terms of 100 years, teach the people.”

21. “If you look into your own heart, and you find nothing wrong there, what is there to worry about? What is there to fear?”

22. “Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without.”

23. “A gentleman would be ashamed should his deeds not match his words.”

24. “By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest.”

25. “Wisdom, compassion, and courage are the three universally recognized moral qualities of men.”

26. “The more man meditates upon good thoughts, the better will be his world and the world at large.”

27. “It is easy to hate and it is difficult to love. This is how the whole scheme of things works. All good things are difficult to achieve; and bad things are very easy to get.”

28. “The superior man understands what is right; the inferior man understands what will sell.”

29. “Never give a sword to a man who can’t dance.”

30. “Imagination is important than knowledge.”