Proverbial Thursday – Global Proverbs from Around the World

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.

This week marks the beginning of a series of Swedish proverbs/quotes and the Confucian sayings continue:

The longest journey is the journey inward

–Dag Hammarsköld

 

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”

Confucius

 

Something to Ponder About

Advertisements

About Forestwoodfolk

Scandinavian culture, literature and traditions are close to my heart, even though I am Australian. I have Scandinavian, Frisian and Prussian/Silesian ancestry and for that reason, I feel a connection with that part of the world. I am an avid Nordic Crime fiction reader, and enjoy photography, writing and a variety of cooking and crafts, and traditional decorative art forms. Politically aware and egalitarian by nature, I have a strong environmental bent.
This entry was posted in Community and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

40 Responses to Proverbial Thursday – Global Proverbs from Around the World

  1. Two more great sayings Amanda 🙂 The first one is so true (and I understand it this week! LOL!), and the second I know is true, from when I had my geological job 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      I had previously answered this comment but the cyber gremlins removed it. My internet connection is horribly unstable atm. Australia has appalling broadband, it is like living in the twentieth century here ( first world problems, hey?) I am glad you like the sayings this week Andy, and it sounds like you so enjoyed your time in the geology field. Did you always know you wanted to do that particular work, from an early age?

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’m sorry to hear that you have the dreaded cyber gremlins, Amanda, I know how frustrating they can be!!! We are fortunate here in Glenrothes, the internet connection is pretty good most of the time 🙂
      I was fascinated with geology as a kid, and not the usual thing with dinosaurs and fossils (which is just as well, there aren’t that many fossils in Cornwall!!), but I liked to find out how the various rocks formed, and how they were all interconnected to each other. And 40 years later the fascination is still there 🙂 I didn’t work hard enough at school, failed my A- levels, didn’t get a degree, but did manage to get a job in a geological lab in Surrey as a sedimentological technician, making microscopic thin sections of rocks from oil wells. After a couple of years I was in charge of all 4 labs, and I used to really look forward to going into work!! It was brilliant 🙂

      Like

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      How wonderful that you felt that excitement in your job and work, Andy. It sounds like you were well suited to that area. And I am impressed that you managed to work you way into and progress successfully in that field. It is a bit sad that these days it is much harder to do that. I think the workforce suffers a bit from a lack of practical talent because it is too heavily skewed on employees with “pieces of paper” – ie. degrees. The reality is often that those people aren’t looking to stay in an area, but merely use it as a stepping stone to a job with higher income etc. For a time, I also worked in a laboratory, however, that was a pathology lab, and it really wasn’t my favourite working environment, however, I am now in a workplace that I love!! So it has taken me many years but yay! I can relate to your feelings of excitement about going to work! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’m really pleased for you Amanda, it is a fantastic thing to look forward to going into work, I think only a few of us manage to be that lucky 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Leya says:

    As often – I can very well relate to these.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      I guess Dag’s quote/proverb is well known to Swedes?!! Did you find the job you love, Ann-Christine, or is there something else you would have liked to do?

      Like

    • Leya says:

      Yes, we use it…often. And I have the most interesting job I could ever have – it’s been a joy to go to work every day.

      Like

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      I am interested to know in what sense you might often use the Dag H. quote, Ann-Christine? Could you give me an example? I find it such a fascinating quote.

      Like

    • Leya says:

      I believe Dag H might have used it thinking about his difficult job and how he had to return to his home in Barkåkra to find a peaceful and reflective relaxing.
      But, my own use is of course related to this. A journey, a physical journey, always has an end – but trying to know yourself has no ending…Many of us will never know the whole truth, will we? Sometimes we are surprised by our own actions and thoughts – we do/think things we never thought we would do.
      I use the quote with my students for example. When someone complains about a task…too long and heavy. When the results are far better/worse than expected. When a task requires (too)much reflecting…
      I can also use the quote with a friend who has discovered something new, changed jobs, is trying to rise from a depression, has finally accepted things as they are…a.s.o.
      I think it is very useful, this quote of his.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Ann-Christine!
      I have responded to our comment, but for some reason, my notifications and comments are showing all higgedly – piggedly, and out of order. The notifications are also not coming through, which was a great way to keep track of multiple comments. My apologies. My response is on the actual posting page.

      Like

    • Leya says:

      Strange, but I have difficulties as well – comments cannot be posted, buttons do not show up etc. I thought I had a virus, but let’s see what happens…

      Like

  3. Dina says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Mabel Kwong says:

    Another two quotes I’ve come across, and I love them. Going forwards and up is always fun because you really can’t predict what’s going to come your way down the line. Sometimes it also involves leaving the past behind and that can tug at the heartstrings sometimes. Choosing a job we love – it’s always easier said than done. Not all of us will get the opportunity and privilege to do what we love. Then again, “work” is so hard to define these days. What we love doing we might not consider “work”.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      Apologies if my response is duplicated. My internet is unstable atm. You make a great point there Mabel, when you mention that what we love to do might not be considered to be work. It took many quite some time to find my niche, so to speak, and I thank goodness it is reasonably easy to change careers these days, if the job vacancies are there. I wonder how people coped in the past, if they were unfortunate enough to be locked into a job they hated. I know some just did it, because they had to put food on the table, but it must have taken a fair amount of mental discipline and resilience. I think there is lessons for us today in this respect, in that perhaps we are less content, or less disciplined, and less inclined to accept a lower level of happiness?

      Like

    • Mabel Kwong says:

      Those are such good questions. I do think that a lot of us are less content, and are always after more, more, more. Then again, if we demand more, in a way we are demanding a higher worth of ourselves, to loosely put it. Or maybe we really are being very fussy and picky with work these days.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      If we are fussy and picky, why is that? Why do we expect more, or a higher worth of ourselves? Is this a fundamental part of human personality, to aim higher and higher and up the standard with each generation? What brings about these feelings? Is it related to our baseline level of comfort, as we know it? Each generation seems to have more comforts and material objects than the last, and yet still each generation wants and has, more. When I think of my own grandparents, they did not have so much; when compared to what we have and the general standard of living has improved. Now we have, and give children, many more things that we ourselves did not have. Does it enrich their life. Or is this giving them a higher baseline from which a further upgrade of contentment/discontentment might spring? If this is the case, where will it end? Is the push to do better, have a higher worth of ourselves, and, the possibility of finding a harmonious work atmosphere a driving force that spills over into personal preferences?

      Like

    • Mabel Kwong says:

      So many good questions, Amanda. Maybe we want to impress others, maybe we want to come out on tops. Maybe it’s narcissism. Maybe it’s jealousy or greed. Maybe we feel that it will take us places and put us in touch with things we’ve never known, experience something new.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Sonel says:

    Love these quotes Amanda. Yes, the inward journey is definitely the longest and sometimes the most difficult as well.

    Having a job you love is by itself the best job in the world and the quote really sums it up so well.

    Thanks for sharing these beauties. 😀 ♥

    Liked by 1 person

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      My apologies Sonel, if this comment response is duplicated. My internet connection is unstable atm. Thank you for your comment and I am glad you are back from your break. The “inward journey” as it refers to self improvement,is, I feel, an ongoing process. Difficult yes, but it can also be rewarded and give one valuable insights. Do you think the inward journey, if positive and optimistic, can open one’s mind up to new ideas and perspectives?

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sonel says:

      I don’t see any duplicates Amanda and even so, it wouldn’t matter. Always great to hear from you sweetness. 😀

      You’re very welcome and yes, I had a lovely break. Spend most of my time with Simba and the Vervets. 😀

      That is a fact. It can be quite rewarding and yes, I believe it can. If you’re positive and optimistic, you only draw that energy towards you. That’s why I say it can sometimes be difficult, as we sometimes have to deal with lots of negativity. Everything is up to you as a person. 😀

      Like

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      That is very true, Sonel. It is up to us, as a person to make and use this journey of life. I now think that negative thinking is a kind of bad habit, perfected over some time. And like addictions, it is tough to break the habit, and sometimes we are successful and then fall back to our old habits. But thinking more optimistically is a bit like training the mind, and counteracting each and every negative thought, I think?

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sonel says:

      It sure is Amanda and negative thinking doesn’t help anyone and yes, it is a bad habit I believe and it can be tough sometimes. I always find it’s easier to believe the bad stuff rather than the good stuff, because we were programmed not to think ‘good’ of ourselves. That kind of programming should go.

      The mind is a mystery and I think sometimes we think way too much. I know I do, but yes, we have to always do our best to turn those negative thoughts into positive ones and it does take time, patience and lots of training. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      Hi again Sonel, Your comment touched on Overthinking: Ironically, I have been thinking about overthinking lately! I wonder if the mind has an insatiable need for new information, and thus is always searching. If the outside world or events happens to be closed off, or limited either by choice, necessity or force, the mind will create its own world, sometimes a fantasy world. In this situation, it is easy to dwell too long on matters, and overthink things, imagining things way our of proportion to what they might be, or intend to be. In its extreme it can border on self-obsession, which carries its own dangers. In a very simple form, one might warp the meaning of a simple comment into something far from its intention, and this I think alludes to the negative thinking you and I referred to.
      Furthermore, your comment about programming is spot on. Many of us feel uncomfortable ‘big noting’ ourselves, are too modest, and you are right, this had led to us thinking more of the bad stuff, rather than the positive perspective. These neural pathways of the brain HAVE been programmed in, and it will take a lot of time and effort to re-train them, but it CAN be done. Thanks for adding a wonderful extra dimension to this discussion, Sonel. It has been so interesting.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sonel says:

      It’s always great to have a chat with you Amanda. I think we do think the same and about overthinking you can’t tell me anything I don’t already know. LOL! I tend to be a overthinker and worries sometimes and yes, sometimes we put things way out of proportion. I think that is just the way us humans are put together.

      That is a fact. I think it depends on how a person is feel at that moment and sometimes we see too much in what was said. Maybe we’re too emotional at that stage or too sensitive. It could be that it reminds you of something in the past or it reminds you of someone who did something to you and it could either be positive or negative, and then you react according to it.

      We do that, don’t we? We were taught to NOT think too much of ourselves, to be humble, etc. and because of that we feel uncomfortable when someone praises us or say good things about us, because we don’t want to feel ‘vain’. Also, if you didn’t have a good childhood and felt your parents didn’t love you, that kind of ‘programming’ can cause a lot of harm to yourself and sometimes to others. I sometimes wish I can take my brain out and plug it into my pc and reprogram it. LOL!

      It does take a lot of time Amanda and yes, it can be done. You are very welcome and thank you as well. Always great chatting to you. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      Wouldn’t that be an easier way of dealing with programming problems? Just give our brains a re-boot? LOL!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sonel says:

      It would be soooo nice for sure and remove all the viruses at the same time. LOL!

      Like

    • Haha! That would be awesome

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sonel says:

      😆

      Like

  6. milliethom says:

    Both quotes are very true this week, Amanda. Being able to completely understand ourselves can take a lifetime. It’s easy to say we know what we like or want, or the way we feel about various issues – and understand our reasons for doing so. But things change over time, our outlook on life and what is truly good, or needful (for ourselves or the world in general) evolves along with us. And sometimes we react to situations in ways that surprise even ourselves, until we sit and try to work it out. Isn’t there a quote, ‘Know thyself’? (I could be getting confused with ‘Physician, heal thyself’!)
    The second quote is extremely true, and so important when we’re choosing a career. To do something you love every day simply isn’t a chore. To look forward to every day’s work is a wonderful feeling. When you start to dread going in, or the job becomes something it wasn’t when you started, it’s time to leave. Unfortunately, in the U.K. at the moment, jobs aren’t that easy to come by, so quitting the one you’ve got may not be an option. Also, people sometimes take on jobs they don’t enjoy simply because there’s nothing else around and they need to be earning.

    Like

    • Forestwoodfolkart says:

      Firstly, Millie thanks ever so much for your comment. I will address your second point first. I would hazard a guess that the majority of people take the first job that comes along especially when they are unemployed. They would be a fool not to do so. And the majority of those people aren’t happy or at least don’t absolutely love their job. There is such a gulf between what people think a job will be like, when they are still a student at school, and the realities of the job. In some cases, the job can be what one makes it. Which brings us back to resilience, positive thinking and the first quote. The only thing I can think is that they must keep trying, keep on the lookout. It took me 25 odd years to find my niche.
      As for your first point, how true is it that it can take a lifetime to “know thyself” – and it is a totally dynamic situation. Life is dynamic and the social situation dictates that it can never be totally predicatable. That is unless we go and live in a cave somewhere! And I am definitely not going to do, nor advocate that!! I haven’t heard the quote “Physician, heal thyself” – that is new to me!

      Liked by 1 person

    • milliethom says:

      Hi, Amanda. I totally agree with everything you’ve said about jobs. Sadly, expectations and reality don’t always meet. I went into teaching, a job I loved for years until the job became something very far removed from the one I went into. So the disillusionment can come later, too.
      The phrase I quoted is a biblical one – somewhere in Luke, I believe (which I came across in teaching).It somehow reminded me of the ‘know thyself’one. I suppose it can be vaguely linked. Most people think of doctors as being very good at diagnosing and healing other people’s ailments, but not their own. I suppose the saying can be applied to people other than doctor’s, too.
      You proverbs certainly make me think, Amanda! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  7. cocoaupnorth says:

    Brilliant quotes! I can relate to both:)

    Like

  8. Hi Millie, I am always so pleased when you comment on my posts, as you always have a skillful way of summarising/paraphrasing the content of what I, in my verbose, inarticulate way, am trying to get across! Expectations and reality don’t alway meet. And the prospect that the job evolves and alters to something drastically different! Obviously an undesirable matter and one that would drive people to change careers. I guess the Doctors find it quite difficult to be objective about diagnosis, and too much knowledge can mean that instead of dismissing irrelevant/absent symptoms, it possibly could become a self – fulfilling prophesy, in that they are searching for any evidence of symptoms so hard, that they see them where others would not!. A great proverb for all generations!

    Like

  9. Ann- Christine: Thanks for the added information on the quote. I love how you use it with your students! I hope it inspires them to persevere.

    Like

  10. fariiisthaa says:

    I’ve always wanted to live by the Confucius quote “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”. But it’s sad to see how not many people get to enjoy their jobs because that’s how things are in the city I live in, Hong Kong. People equate success with wealth and do everything (even jobs they dislike) to attain it. And in the process, they give up the one thing that matters most – happiness.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is so very sad that greed has overridden all other considerations. We only have one life and money and material wealth does not bring happiness in itself. What good is all the money if you have noone to love/ who loves you.

      Like

Comments are closed.