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The Real Quotes of Confucius

Updated on April 6, 2012

Chances are you have probably heard some humorous renditions of the teaching of Confucius. But did you know that Confucius was a real man? Confucius was a Chinese philosopher who lived in the late fourth and early fifth century B.C.E. He was famous political figure and one of the greatest philosophers of his time. It is said that his influence on Chinese culture is comparable to that of Socrates to Western culture. In his Analects, Confucius gives instruction for how man should live his life in an ideal society.

Some of his real quotes are:

  • “The strength of a nation is derived from the integrity of its homes.”
  • “Sincerity and truth are the basis of every virtue.”
  • “The superior man is firm in the right way, and not merely firm.”
  • “True goodness springs from a man’s own heart. All men are born good.”
  • “Our greatest glory is not in never falling but in rising every time we fall.”
  • “To see what is right and not to do it is want of courage.”
  • “It is only the wisest and the very stupidest who cannot change.”
  • “He who learns but does not think, is lost! He who thinks but does not learn is in great danger!”
  • “He does not preach what he practices till he has practiced what he preaches.”
  • “The superior man thinks always of virtue; the common man thinks of comfort.”
  • “Silence is a true friend who never betrays.”
  • “To be fond of learning is to be near to knowledge.”
  • “Being true to oneself is the law of God. To try to be true to oneself is the law of man.”
  • “We don’t know yet about life, how can we know about death?”
  • “Without knowing the force of words it is impossible to know men.”
  • "The superior man has neither anxiety nor fear.”
  • "They who know the truth are not equal to those who love it, and they who love it are not equal to those who delight in it.”

Confucius was one of the ancient world’s greatest thinkers. His teachings helped to form a model of the ideal Chinese society. Though, I must say, some of the humorous quotes attributed to him lately are hilarious, Confucius was a real man with great ideas for humanity.


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    • ashleyvanillilife profile image

      Elle Lewis 

      6 years ago from South East Asia Maritime Section - Phils

      Thanks for sharing. i love reading ;)

    • pmccray profile image


      6 years ago from Utah

      Love quotes and Confucius, excellent read. Voted up, marked useful and interesting.

    • KimberlyLake profile image

      Kimberly Lake 

      6 years ago from California

      Great quotes. Pinned I love his writings, thanks for sharing these quotes.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      6 years ago

      I remember when I was in junior high that it was a fad to quote Confucius and we even made some up. Very inspirational sayings. Good hub topic.

    • profile image

      Breen Bergstrome 

      6 years ago

      Nice to see this hub on Confucius.

      Did he also quote one "Perseverence furthers the superior man".? Since hearing it years ago it became a kind of mantra.

    • flashmakeit profile image


      6 years ago from usa

      Thanks for adding this hub. Confucius quotes are interesting and thoughtful.

    • cleaner3 profile image


      6 years ago from Pueblo, Colorado

      Great hub, like it.

    • roxanne459 profile image

      Roxanne Lewis 

      6 years ago from Washington

      These are truely inspirational! Thank you for sharing them. ;)

    • Millionaire Tips profile image

      Shasta Matova 

      6 years ago from USA

      He was a great man. You've shared some great quotes here.


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