Ancient Wisdom: Truths You Should Use Often in Life

September 19, 2018 • Rehack Team


There’s a science behind mindfulness. Some may dismiss it as a new-age fad, but the practice goes back centuries with support from more than just the Buddhist community. It’s clear that the insight gained through self-reflection can be a powerful tool.

Listed below are people from ancient times who drew on that self-reflection to bring wisdom into the world. The quotes they shared have stayed in the public consciousness, aiding us toward a more enlightened view of ourselves and each other.

1. “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius

2. “Better a little which is well done, than a great deal imperfectly.” – Plato

3. “What you think, you become. What you feel, you attract. What you imagine, you create.” – Buddha

4. “Most powerful is he who has himself in his own power.” – Seneca

5. “The unexamined life is not worth living.” – Socrates

6. “A fool is known by his speech; a wise man by his silence.” – Pythagoras

7. “Be still my heart; thou hast known worse than this.” – Homer

8. “Whoever walks with the wise will become wise, but the companion of fools suffers harm.” – Solomon

9. “They can conquer who believe they can.” – Virgil

10. “You don’t develop courage by being happy in your relationships every day. You develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity.” – Epicurus

11. “Small opportunities are often the beginning of great enterprises.” – Demosthenes

12. “Seize the day, put very little trust in tomorrow.” – Horace

13. “Time is the most valuable thing a man can spend.” – Theophrastus

14. “There is no grief which time does not lessen and soften.” – Cicero

15. “Better to be wise by the misfortunes of others than by your own.” – Aesop

16. “What you leave behind is not engraved in stone monuments, but what is woven into the lives of others.” – Pericles

17. “Know how to listen, and you will profit even from those who talk badly.” – Plutarch

18. “He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.” – Epictetus

19. “One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.” – Seneca

20. “Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.” – Aristotle

21. “He is richest who is content with the least, for contentment is the wealth of nature.” – Socrates

22. “No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.” – Heraclitus

23. “Drop by drop is the water pot filled. Likewise, the wise man, gathering it little by little, fills himself with good.” – Buddha

24. “The expectations of life depend upon diligence; the mechanic that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools.” – Confucius

25. “You will become a teacher of yourself when for the same thing you blame others, you also blame yourself.” – Diogenes of Sinope

26. “It is a greater sin to disregard virtue while knowing what virtue is than never to have known any virtue at all.” – Xenophon

27. “Let there be nothing untried; for nothing happens by itself, but men obtain all things by trying.” – Herodotus

28. “If you really want to escape the things that harass you, what you’re needing is not to be in a different place but to be a different person.” – Seneca

29. “As the light goes out with the exhaustion of the oil, so fortune fails with the cessation of human endeavor.” – Mahabharata

Put This Ancient Wisdom to Use

As you move through your day, consider the lessons taught by those who came, learned and shared their discoveries with those around them. Whether you invest in the teachings of ancient wisdom or choose to adopt a modern but no less-historied practice like yoga, the road to self-improvement never ends.


“However many holy words you read, however many you speak, what good will they do you if you do not act on them?” – Buddha