Lao Tzu, ne Li Urh, also Laotse, Lao Tse, Lao Tse, Lao Zi, Laozi, Lao Zi, La-tsze

Tzu, ne Li Urh, also Laotse, Lao Tse, Lao Tse, Lao Zi, Laozi, Lao Zi, La-tsze
c. 604 B.C.
c. 531 B.C.

Chinese Philosopher, Founder of Taoism, Author of Tao Te Ching (The Book of the Way and Its Power) and Hua Hu Ching

Author Quotes

The highest good is like that of the water. The goodness of water is that it benefits the ten thousand creatures, yet itself does not scramble, but is content with the places that all men disdain.

To be constantly without desire is the way to have a vision of the mystery of heaven and earth, for constantly to have desire is the means by which their limitations are seen.

The highest truth cannot be put into words. Therefore the greatest teacher has nothing to say. He simply gives himself in service, and never worries.

To bring forth and preserve, to produce without possessing, to act without hope of reward, and to expand without waste, this is the supreme virtue.

The Master doesn’t seek fulfillment. Not seeking, not expecting, she is present, and can welcome all things.

To eliminate the vexation of the mind, it doesn’t help to do something; this only reinforces the mind’s mechanics. Dissolving the mind is instead a matter of not-doing: simply avoid becoming attached to what you see and think. Relinquish the notion that you are separated from the all-knowing mind of the universe. then you can recover the original pure insight and see through all illusions. Knowing nothing, you will be aware of everything. Remember: because clarity and enlightenment are within your own nature, they are regained without moving an inch.

The Master gives himself up to whatever the moment brings. He knows that he is going to die, and he has nothing left to hold on to: no illusion in his mind, no resistances in his body. He doesn’t think about his actions; they flow from the core of his being. He holds nothing back from life; therefore he is ready for death, as a man is ready for sleep after a good day’s work.

To know when you have enough is to be rich.

The more law and orders are multiplied, the more theft and violence increase.

Truth sounds paradoxical!

The more prohibitions you have, the less virtuous people will be. The more weapons you have, the less secure the people will be. The more subsidies you have, the less self-reliant people will be.

Understand that true growth comes from meeting and solving the problems of life in a way that is harmonizing to yourself and to others. If you can follow these simple old ways, you will be continually renewed.

The more you know, the less you understand.

Unless the mind, body and spirit are equally developed and fully integrated, no [wisdom] can be sustained. This is why extremist religions and ideologies do not bear fruit.

The sage does not accumulate for himself. The more he gives to others, the more he possesses of his own. The way of Heaven is to benefit others and not to injure.

We join spokes together in a wheel, but it is the center hold that makes the wagon move. We shape clay into a pot, but it is the emptiness inside that holds whatever we want. We hammer wood for a house, but it is the inner space that makes it livable. We work with being, but non-being is what we use.

The sufficiency of contentment is an enduring and unchanging sufficiency.

We pierce doors and windows to make a house; and it is on these spaces where there is nothing that the usefulness of the house depends. Therefore just as we take advantage of what is, we should recognize the usefulness of what is not.

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

God’s Way is gain that works no harm.

All things in nature work silently. They come into being and possess nothing. They fulfill their function and make no claim. All things alike do their work, and then we see them subside. When they have reached their bloom, each returns to its origin… This reversion is an eternal law. To know that law is wisdom.

Going back to the origin is called peace; it means reversion to destiny. Reversion to destiny is called eternity. He who knows eternity is called enlightened.

As for the best leaders, the people do not notice their existence. The next best, the people honor and praise. The next, the people fear, and the next the people hate. When the best leader's work is done, the people say, 'We did it ourselves.’

Good men are bad men’s instructors, and bad men are good men’s materials.

As he succeeds, he takes no credit and just because he does not take it, credit never leaves him.

Author Picture
First Name
Last Name
Tzu, ne Li Urh, also Laotse, Lao Tse, Lao Tse, Lao Zi, Laozi, Lao Zi, La-tsze
Birth Date
c. 604 B.C.
Death Date
c. 531 B.C.

Chinese Philosopher, Founder of Taoism, Author of Tao Te Ching (The Book of the Way and Its Power) and Hua Hu Ching