Pills of ancient wisdom

Without any comment, leaving to the free interpretation of the reader, I carry over some reflections coming from a more or less remote past.

The obscurity of certain maxims is only relative. Everything that appears clear to the practitioner cannot be clearly explained to the listener.

“Being of few words is second nature, because a whirlwind doesn't last a whole morning, a downpour doesn't last a whole day. Who produces them? Heaven and earth. If even heaven and earth cannot persist for long, much less can man ”.
(Lao-Tzu: Tao-teh-ching)

Without going out the door
know the world.
Without spying out the window
see the way to heaven.
The farther you go, the less you know.
Therefore the wise man does not travel, yet he knows;
he does not look, yet he understands;
it does not do, yet it does.
(Lao-Tzu: Tao-teh-ching)

A good leader is not belligerent.
A good fighter is not angry.
He who wins the enemies well does not contend.
Whoever employs men well places himself under them.
This is called the "virtue of non-contention".
This is called "ability to employ men".
This is called "being equal to heaven".
(Lao-Tzu: Tao-teh-ching)

The people do not fear death: how to scare them with the death penalty ?. Even assuming that the people feared death and that we could capture and have those who do strange things killed,
who would dare to do it ?.
There is always a Minister of Death who kills.
Now killing in his place is like taking the place of the great carpenter. Rarely does he not injure his hand.
(Lao-Tzu: Tao-teh-ching)

There is nothing so sacred in nature
not to find anyone willing to profane it.
(Seneca: The firmness of the wise)

We have the defects of others in our eyes, ours are on our shoulders
(Seneca: De Ira)

It is also lawful to learn from an enemy
(Ovid: Metamorphosis)

It is the duty of the good shepherd to shear the sheep, not to skin them.
(Suetonius: Life of Tiberius)

Nothing is safer to look after the state than a concorde boarding school
(Livio: History of Rome)

At sunset some men looked at their own shadow and seen it long they thought they were great: blessed if they died at midnight!
Francesco Domenico Guerrazzi (1804-1878)

Most of the time our virtues
They are only disguised vices
(La Rochefoucauld: Maxims)

We all have enough strength to endure the evils of others
(La Rochefoucauld: Maxims)

One may be smarter than another, but not everyone else.
(La Rochefoucauld: Maxims)

The quarrels wouldn't last that long
if the wrong were only on one side.
(La Rochefoucauld: Maxims)

Three qualities must have those who are destined to fill the highest offices:
love for the established government;
the maximum capacity for the exercise of the office;
virtue and justice
(Aristotle: Politics)


The virtue of the citizen consists in knowing how to command and obey, but one cannot command well if one has not first learned to obey.
 (Aristotle: Politics)

When Providence wants to produce a man who will have a great effect, it begins by surrounding him with small, null, abject men. Like conjurers, he needs a circle of fools.
(Alphonse Karr: Aphorisms).

Many things go wrong because people no longer take the profession as an aim, but as a means.
(Alphonse Karr: Aphorisms).

Here are some who are not other than transit of food, and dung augmenters and right-hand fillers must be called, because for them nothing else in the world appears, no virtue is put into work, because of them nothing remains but full rights.
 (Leonardo Da Vinci: Codex Foster III)

In minor matters and which do not reach any level of importance, it is not a bad thing to allow friends to really contend with each other, and for each to resort to his or her own point of view, to make sure that, for the most important and serious problems , it appears that they agree for the public good and not for previous agreements.
(Plutarch: Advice to politicians)




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