Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Yisroel Salanter Lipkin

Lithuanian Rabbi, Talmudist, Founder and Spiritual Father of Mussar Movement

"A poor person does not die from starvation, but from arrogance and honor-seeking."

"The lessons we learn from our mistakes are a great light."

"Envy, lust, and honor-seeking take a person out of the world."

"Even though we personally should do what we can to flee from honor, we still have an obligation to treat other people with honor and respect."

"A pious Jew is not one who worries about his fellow man's soul and his own stomach; a pious Jew worries about his own soul and his fellow man's stomach."

"Both the hasidim and the mitnaggedim are in error - the former because they think they have a rebbe, and the latter because they think they do not need one."

"First a person should put his house together, then his town, then the world."

"Promote yourself, but do not demote another."

"Spiritual life is superior to physical life. But the physical life of another is an obligation of my spiritual life."

"Spirituality is like a bird: If you hold it too closely, it chokes, And if you hold it too loosely, it escapes."

"The Maharal of Prague [Rabbi Judah Loeb, d.1609] created a golem, and this was a great wonder. But how much more wonderful is it to transform a corporeal human being into a mensch!"

"There is no greater illness than discouragement!"