Lao Tzu Quotes: Lao Tzu’s Inspiring Advice Simple Practices that Will Make You Happier Every Day

According to tradition, the Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu (sometimes spelled Laozi) lived in the sixth century BC and wrote extensively on the need of maintaining a tranquil disposition. Often attributed to him, he proposes an unconventional spiritual philosophy in the “Tao Te Ching,” based on the idea that everything in the universe is interconnected.

Despite Lao Tzu’s writings being taken by many different religious and anti-authoritarian movements, they continue to have widespread resonance today.


No matter if Lao-Tzu existed as a historical figure in the sixth century or not, the Tao Te Ching has had a significant influence on world philosophy, especially in East Asia. The Tao Te Ching, the central text of Taoism, consists of 81 chapters. In general, the book is split in half, with the first 37 chapters dealing with more theoretical or philosophical issues, and the second 44 dealing with more concrete social or political subjects.

The Tao Te Ching states that in order to truly live the “Tao” or “the Way,” one must cut off all other influences. According to Lao Tzu, a person loses sight of their own judgment and actions when they let their emotions and the acts of others affect them.

Self-inflicted misinformation also extends to the process of acquiring knowledge. According to Lao Tzu, we are not being true to ourselves, or the Way, when we make decisions based on what we have learned. The answer was found in an understanding of natural forces, how they function, and how to adapt one’s lifestyle to fit into these systems. Taoists believe that global change is detrimental to their beliefs (those who follow the Tao Te Ching). The more a person tries to control their environment via sheer force of will, the more dissatisfied they will become.

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Right-wing libertarians According to Murray Rothbard, who likened Laozi’s views on the government to those of F. A. Hayek’s concept of spontaneous order, Laozi was the first libertarian. “argued that minimizing the role of government and allowing individuals to evolve spontaneously would best attain social and economic harmony,” as James A.

Dorn. In 1997, David Boaz published The Libertarian Reader, in which he, like other authors, used passages from the Daodejing. In contrast, according to scholar Roderick Long, libertarian elements in Taoist ideology are borrowed from earlier Confucian authors.


When it came to the function of the state, Laozi argued for a minimal one. Anarcho-syndicalist author and activist Rudolf Rocker praised Laozi. According to Peter Kropotkin’s article in the 1910 Encyclopedia Britannica, Laozi was another early proponent of anarchist ideals. Anarchists like John P. Clark and Ursula K. Le Guin have made Laozi’s teachings more well-known.

Le Guin, in her recent works, discusses how anarchism relates to Taoism. In her retelling of the Tao Te Ching, Le Guin asserts that Laozi “Doesn’t believe in the enchantment of political power.” His view is that legitimate power is gained, whereas illegitimate power is seized.

He thinks that anyone who practices the Way can attain power and that the practice of sacrifice is a perversion of that power. It’s no surprise that anarchists and Taoists get along so well; they share a lot of values and beliefs in common.

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Lao Tzu Quotes


1. “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” – Lao Tzu

2. “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.” – Lao Tzu

3. “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.” – Lao Tzu

4. “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

5. “If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.” – Lao Tzu

6. “To the mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders.” – Lao Tzu

7. “Kindness in words creates confidence, kindness in thinking creates profoundness, and kindness in giving creates love.” – Lao Tzu

8. “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” – Lao Tzu

9.“A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.” – Lao Tzu

10. “I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures.” – Lao Tzu

11. “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.” – Lao Tzu

12. “When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.” – Lao Tzu

13. “Silence is a source of great strength.” – Lao Tzu

14. “In dwelling, live close to the ground. And in thinking, keep to the simple. In conflict, be fair and generous. In governing, don’t try to control. And at work, do what you enjoy. In family life, be completely present.” – Lao Tzu

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