Proverbial Thursday – Global Proverbs and Sayings

Proverbial sml

I find there to be profound wisdom in proverbs, sayings and quotes and I marvel at the way they are so succinct in communicating messages to the reader. Mostly anonymous, they come to us from past generations and from across cultures. They speak of the experiences of lives lived and lessons learned. Quotes, like proverbs, make us think more deeply about something.

“A family tie is like a tree, it can bend but it cannot break.” – African Proverb

”A threat from outside refines the arts” – Sibelius

Each Thursday, I post a Proverb or Saying and a Quote that I find thought-provoking. 

I hope you will too.

Something proverbial to Ponder About


11 thoughts on “Proverbial Thursday – Global Proverbs and Sayings

  1. I like the first quote a lot. It reminds me of this saying from blogger and author Jeff Goins that went something like this, “Home is the place where we sometimes hurt the ones we love but there’s always a seat at the table”. There’s nothing that binds you like family – though we might have different views on things, they are always there to support you. But then again, not every family is perfect and we can’t choose biologically which family we are born into…and that’s another can of worms altogether.

    Not sure if I get the second one. I’m sort of thinking that we appreciate what we have when we get a wake up call. We are more focused on what we want to do and achieve when we are in that kind of position because we are afraid of losing what we have.


    1. I do think there is truth in the first proverb, Mabel. You are correct in saying that they are the syrongest ties. Even we were are estranged or separated from our families there is the genetic influence or the environmental influence of our years spent with them. One might hear their own mother’s voice in their voice when they reprimand other children or feel some value has been unwittingly been absorbed into their own set of values when they reach adulthood. The second quote I think might refer to a renewed nationalistic feeling towards all indigenous and ? Finnish art (as sibelius was from Finland). When Norway was taken over by Sweden, there was a surge in interest in all things Norwegian almost as a protest aginst the foreign entity. What do you think, Mabel?


    2. That is quite a bit of history behind the second quote. Makes sense the way you put it. I guess we can be protective of what we have. National pride, and cultural pride are sensitive values and feelings all round.

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  2. Who can deny the strength of family ties? This proverb reminds me a lot of the ‘Blood is thicker than water’ saying. Both are about the closeness of family members. In the saying above, it’s very true that relationships withing families can be seriously strained by disagreements, rivalries etc. But despite that, at the end of the day, they will generally stick together and support each other in times of need.
    I read your interpretation of the second proverb/saying and now see how the saying arose. Could we not interpret it more generally? Perhaps a threat to anything – a person, a business, a nation, would make that person etc more wary of finding ways towards self preservation and/or .improivement.

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    1. Thanks Millie for your comment and I absolutely agree with you on the second quote’s interpretation. I
      feel sure Sibelius had noticed a protective nationalistic feeling when everyday life is thteatened as well as when threats arise or external influences dominate the arts. Perceptive of you to see the quote in the broader sense. Thanks ever so much for adding to the discussion.

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