Proverbial Thursday – Global Wisdom

WindowI 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.

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

I hope you think so too.

This week’s proverb comes from my beloved homeland of Danmark, yes it is spelt that way, over there!

There are many possible interpretations of this proverb and so, many possible layers. I see the proverb referring to the fact that fear might make us pro-active and desperate enough that it would motivate us when motivation is hard to find. It could also refer to escapism, an ability to avoid and remove ourselves from facing up to a responsibility or a challenge. Either in a positive or negative way. We find a way out of a difficult situation, or we procrastinate about a difficult or boring task.  Some of us might even delegate that task to avoid having to do it ourselves.

He who fears finds a way out.

What layer do you read in this Danish proverb?

He who fears finds a way out.

– Danish Proverb


The following quote resonated with me this week:-

“Sufficient  are the worries of today.”

– The Bible

Whether one is religious or not, this quote refers to living in the present, and I do wonder what  it is we will worry about in the future.

Will we look back at our old worries and think how trivial, futile or ridiculous?

Or will, in decades to come, even  regard with horror, the worries of now.

I would love to hear your thoughts.

Join in the discussion.

Something to Ponder About


34 thoughts on “Proverbial Thursday – Global Wisdom”

  1. Our interpretation of the Danish proverb would focus on the motivation part (to be positive). Sort of like the general saying “life will find a way”, its the signature of human genius to improvise, tinker or invent.
    On the other hand, most folks worry too much that it leads to stress. Not sure if there is enough to worry today, but worrying about tomorrow is definitely stressful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Humans are incredibly ingenious. There is a whole philosophy around mankind and science and technology finding a way out of most of the world’s problems including Climate change. However, can we utterly rely on this? Can we rest our laurels and leave it to science? I read with interest that Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg are having a disagreement about the benefits of robotic technology and the I.O.T. Musk is wary whilst the facebook master thinks of only the benefits. How can we know for sure? What safeguards can be put in place to protect our species from our own fantastic inventions?

      I agree worrying over tomorrow is stressful as we cannot change tomorrow today.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hmmm…its an interesting ponder. Over whether we will create something that will lead to our own demise. Sort of like being the corporate world equivalent of working oneself out of a job… there are no safeguards we’re afraid since we cannot police everyone and everywhere even as we try.
        However we can always do something today that prevents us having to worry about tomorrow!

        Liked by 1 person

            1. That is a good philosophy. It is nice to wish for things but wishing for things you can’t have can only lead to unhappiness. Furthermore, it takes away the enjoyment of those things in front of our feet.

              Liked by 1 person

    1. A Schnauzer contemplating the state of things at sunset? I can well understand that you would ponder about that! I can’t remember how old your Schnauzer is? Tiffany was featured here contemplating whether she is a full Australian citizen or not!

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Haha! So right. They own us!! Especially the Minis are as bold as brass! We have a 4 year old mini now called Rebel! She is a retired salt and pepper breeding girl. We love her so much but she is cheeky! She goes ballistic when we return home! That used to annoy my standard sch. So much!! You can just imagine an old standard girl tut tutting disapprovingly whilst the mini performs acrobatics accompanied by high pitched barking- (schnauzer talk)!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Schnauzers rule! This is my second pair, they are well-mannered but also pretty funny. I will post them sometime even though my blog has nada to do with dogs – just because, hey, who can resist those faces!

            Liked by 1 person

  2. When worry becomes overwhelming, I take to our Jack Russell for guidance and comfort. Milo never worries, except when I forget to give him his meaty treat in the form of a strip. A nice treat for humans works the same. It lifts the spirit. A nicely spiced chicken wing or the crackling from a pork roast always lifts my spirit and takes me out off the gloom.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. How wonderful that something so simple can improve your mood, Gerard. My dogs also make me very happy. That unconditional love and always listening ear can only lift my spirits. Hi lucky I am to have them.


  3. I really, really like the interpretation of your first quote. Spot on. Sometimes motivation and inspiration isn’t enough. We might find motivation or inspiration within the comforts of our own environments that we know so well. Fear is usually something that gets us out of our comfort zone and makes us see things in ways we’ve never thought about. Experiencing fear, I think a lot of us want to get out – that is, be somewhere else rather than this place that’s bringing us down and making us go in circles. I guess what I’m trying to say is that fear pushes us to the extremes much more further than so many other feelings we experience.
    The second quote: not too sure what to think about it. Reading your thoughts, I thought about this loose saying: a lot of the time we won’t remember this a year from now; a year from now, things won’t be the same and today probably won’t matter anyway. We can worry today, and worrying might get us thinking about ways to make a better tomorrow – that can be a positive way of looking at worrying. But on the other hand, worry too much and it might feel you are doing your head it and just feel stressed.


    1. Fear as an extreme emotion, Mabel?! Absolutely. There are very few of us that thrive on fear. I suppose fear is much more raw, more all encompassing than an adrenaline rush that one might get on a roller-coaster. Fear to me, is more towards the terror end of the scale! Adrenaline can get us moving, but fear can sometimes make us frozen to the spot! There was a quote about courage that I think Mandela said:… that courage is not being unafraid, it is being afraid but pushing ahead with it, anyway. I have paraphrased his words I feel sure, but the gist is there. I also like that you raised the point that fear can change our perspective – this can be in a negative way, when we might react in an unrealistic, paranoid way, however it might also work in a positive fashion, [which I would prefer to think of….], that fear and the relief from resolved fear, can make us more realistic, or realize something different about a situation that hitherto would have been hidden from our thoughts/view.
      You do seem also to understand my reasoning in regard to the second quote. Life is transient and changeable, worry only about what we can manage – if you must worry at all that is. Worry has a negative connotation, but I suppose if we think of it as concerted thinking – it suddenly has a much more positive feel! Worrying too much is definitely not desired. Not only is it bad for our mental and physical health, it can open up neural pathways in our brain so that we return to this negative or damaging cycle of thinking. Thanks for your thoughts, Mabel. Always appreciated!


      1. ‘Fear to me, is more towards the terror end of the scale!’ That made me think twice. Quite often I associate fear with a bit of worry, a bit of uncertainty and a bit of not wanting to let go. Definitely fear can be terrorising up until it makes us rooted to the spot. I guess with fear and any other emotion, they come in different forms.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Different forms indeed.when I a. Frightened, it is terrorifying. When we get a ‘fright’ it is like a shot of electricity through the body: that instant feeling of terror but it passes. Worry is more like a constant niggling thought on an endless loop in your mind that wears away at your resilience, rationality and energy levels. And to what end? Most worries are unfounded or overreactions to a common situation. Self – talk has run wild! A little bit of worry can be a force of good in that it can motivate us to take action, as others as mentioned.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Whose miniature schnauzer is that? I had one, but he died at age 14 last October. Meanest little critter on 4 legs I’ve ever known! I always told people he wasn’t a miniature schnauzer; he was a miniature wolf! Love that dog!

    The Danish proverb highlights that fear can be empowering in the same way as positive comments and experiences. When fear transmutes into terror, then it becomes disruptive and burdensome. But someone who generally fears something – whether it’s starting a new job or engaging in a new creative endeavor – will instinctively find a way to overcome that challenge and move forward. In many cases it’s the fear of failure or being considered a failure that’s the actual motivator.

    The fear of failure has hampered me too many times in the past to count. However, I now use it as fuel to pursue my various passions. At 53, I’m making up for a lot of lost time!


    1. It is Tiffany, my standard Schnauzer, Alejandro. Unfortunately, she passed away a few months ago, almost 16. You can read about her a bit more here:
      They are such intuitive, loving dogs, so I am surprised to hear that yours was mean! Was he yours from a pup or did he come from a shelter?
      You mentioned fear of failure as an overriding emotion, and I think that is indeed very true. We fear many situations because it may be interpreted by us or others as failure. And yet, we are told we should embrace failure as we all learn by our mistakes. I like that you considered failure as a motivator. Often, with depression or anxiety disorders, the patient finds it exceedingly difficult to motivate oneself. The sense of failure could be turned around for positive motivation, unless one fails and then the anxiety triggers might be reinforced. I am so glad to read that you have harnessed the fear of failure. Growing older brings many problems but reassessments of trivialities and all the big questions, allows us to prioritize what is really important in life. If only we had this age related wisdom when we are young. Great that you are making up for lost time now!! Well done, and keep at it!! Let any past regrets be just that – something from the past, which brings me to the second quote – worrying is not something that there is room for TODAY!! Thanks so much for contributing your valuable thoughts to the discussion, Alejandro. You always articulate the quote’s meanings and layers so well!


      1. I adopted Wolfgang from a former friend / roommate. He had gotten the puppy in August of 2002, shortly after he’d put to sleep his 11 year-old miniature schnauzer who had suffered kidney failure. I was surprised when I returned home from work one afternoon and found him in his bed with a tiny ball of silver / white fur crawling around on his chest. I ended up taking care of the new puppy. The roommate had a slew of personal problems and decided to move back in temporarily with his mother in the small Northeast Texas town where he was born and raised. He also realized he couldn’t take care of the puppy and thought of selling him. But I said no; that I would take him. On a Friday in January 2003, the roommate packed up what he could and left. When I returned home from work, the puppy came bounding out of his room. At the time I wasn’t fully prepared to have a dog in my life. But he and I had already bonded. I renamed him Wolfgang, and we launched our new life together. As difficult as it was for me in those early days, I’m so glad I kept the dog. He turned out to be the best part of my life. I always wanted to adopt another dog, so he’d have a playmate. But I just never did.

        When my father’s health began to fail in 2007, I decided to move back in with my parents. They weren’t used to having a dog around either. We’d had a German shepherd when I was young and had to put him down in 1985. But my parents took to Wolfgang rather quickly. My father especially developed a close bond with him. He’d periodically say to him, “We’re going to go together,” saying it as if telling the dog a secret. My father died in June of 2016, and Wolfgang passed away less than 5 months later. The latter had developed a heart murmur and was on 2 medications. On the Monday before I rushed him to the vet’s office, he refused to take his meds. He actually bit me; something he’d never done before! I knew he had a powerful bite, despite his size. He’d killed a few wild rabbits in the back yard of my parents’ home. He died at the vet’s office.

        Because of Wolfgang I developed an absolute and unrequited love of all things canine. I established my blog, in part, as homage to wolves – the predecessor of all modern dogs. I even have a wolf’s head tattoo on my upper right arm.

        I really like your blog, Amanda, and hope you can keep going for years to come. Thanks for your kind words. I’m certainly no expert on the world’s machinations. I just base much of my views upon my own personal life experiences. Then again, who doesn’t?!


        1. Absolutely, Alejandro. Blogging and our our inner thoughts are very much based on our lives and I always appreciate your comments, especiallly on Proverbial Thursday. You always have some outstanding pearl of wisdom, to contribute. However, not everyone can learn from their experiennces, or use them to formulate comparative comments and draw conclusions, Alejandro. This is where you have an advantage.
          I loved hearing about how you named your blog and the bond you had with your schnauzer. However, it is a Schnauzer and they are nigh impossible NOT to bond with – they are so intelligent and human like! Poor old Wolfgang must have been uncomfortable/very scared when he bit you, or perhaps he was trying to ensure that you let him “pass.” My Tiffany certainly knew and took the trouble to assist us with her impending departure in many subtle ways. She was never a biter, more a barker, but I am sure that she would have liked to take a chomp out of her new housemate – as the new mini schnauzer was so impulsive, pushy and bouncy! She did not like that about the new dog. And she never had a problem using her canine teeth on a cat or possum if it tried to enter our yard…..


  5. Still working on the tablet so this will be brief. I agree with Mel and Susan. Fear can be both good and bad . It will either move you forward or paralyze you . I gave up worry . It’s like trying to get from east to west sitting in a rocking chair . Waste of energy . I write out my concerns and let ideas for resolution come forward . Most of what we worry about never happens anyway.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What a wonderful attitude Marlene. You just gave up on worry!! I feel I am getting closer to this as I get older. Age makes us less conscientious about details. At times in the last year or two, I have said, ” I am too old to be bothered by…..” It has been quite liberating for me!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I believe sometimes Fear brings out the best in us but more often it ruins by bringing in anxiousness! If I come to think of it, I’m surrounded by constant fear of something or the other but I choose to focus on positive and staying stress free… Cheers, Charu


    1. I am so sorry to hear that you live in constant fear, Charu. That be very difficult to bare. Fear is an extreme emotion that is much more intense than mere anxiousness. Focusing on the positive in each situation is a great way to quell anxiety, and starve it of oxygen. But is it possible to change or influence the circumstances that is stressing you? That may not be possible in all ways, so I applaud you for finding a way to make your own space less fearful. Positivity can work wonders, at least in our mental attitude! Stress affects us in so many ways! Take care!!


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