Egyptian Proverbs

Enjoy dozens of witty and insightful Egyptian proverbs and idioms that have been passed down from one generation to the next for hundreds of years!

  • There grows no wheat where there is no grain.
  • Maat, who links the universal to the terrestrial, the divine with the human, is incomprehensible to the cerebral intelligence.
  • All is within yourself. Know your most inward self and look for what corresponds with it in nature.
  • The way of knowledge is narrow.
  • Envious greed must govern to possess, and ambition must possess to govern.
  • Understanding develops by degrees.
  • If his heart rules him, his conscience will soon take the place of the rod.
  • The body is the house of god. That is why it is said, “Man know yourself.”
  • The seed cannot sprout upwards without simultaneously sending roots into the ground.
  • Men need images. Lacking them, they invent idols. Better then to found the images on realities that lead the true seeker to the source.
  • One foot isn’t enough to walk with.
  • The only thing that is humiliating is helplessness.
  • A man’s heart is his own Neter.
  • Altruism is the mark of a superior being.
  • Growth in consciousness doesn’t depend on the will of the intellect or its possibilities but on the intensity of the inner urge.
  • The key to all problems is the problem of consciousness.
  • What reveals itself to me ceases to be mysterious for me alone. If I unveil it to anyone else, he hears mere words which betray the living sense: Profanation, but never revelation.
  • Love is one thing, knowledge is another.
  • The best and shortest road towards knowledge of truth is Nature.
  • Leave him in error who loves his error.
  • By knowing, one reaches belief. By doing, one gains conviction. When you know, dare.
  • If you would know yourself, take yourself as a starting point and go back to its source; your beginning will disclose your end.
  • True teaching is not an accumulation of knowledge; it is an awaking of consciousness that goes through successive stages.
  • It is better not to know and to know that one does not know, than presumptuously to attribute some random meaning to symbols.
  • Always watch and follow nature.
  • For every joy, there is a price to be paid.
  • To know means to record in one’s memory; but to understand means to blend with the thing and to assimilate it oneself.
  • If you would build something solid, don’t work with wind: always look for a fixed point, something you know that is stable … yourself.
  • Exuberance is a good stimulus towards action, but the inner light grows in silence and concentration.
  • When the governing class isn’t chosen for quality, it is chosen for material wealth: this always means decadence, the lowest stage a society can reach.
  • An answer brings no illumination unless the question has matured to a point where it gives rise to this answer, which thus becomes its fruit. Therefore, learn how to put a question.
  • The man who knows how to lead one of his brothers towards what he has known may one day be saved by that very brother.
  • Grain must return to the earth, die, and decompose for new growth to begin.
  • Have the wisdom to abandon the values of a time that has passed and picked out the constituents of the future. An environment must be suited to the age and men to their environment.
  • The plant reveals what is in the seed.
  • There are two kinds of error: blind credulity and piecemeal criticism. Never believe a word without putting its truth to the test.
  • The first concerning the ‘secrets’: all cognition comes from inside; we are initiated only by ourselves, but the Master gives the keys.
  • If you are searching for a Neter, observe Nature!
  • If one tries to navigate unknown waters, one runs the risk of shipwreck.
  • Every man is rich in excuses to safeguard his prejudices, his instincts, and his opinions.
  • Experience will show you, a master can only point the way.
  • People bring about their own undoing through their tongues.
  • Our senses serve to affirm, not to know.
  • Man, know yourself … and you shalt know the gods.
  • Know the world in yourself. Never look for yourself in the world, for this would be to project your illusion.
  • What you are doing does not matter so much as what you are learning from doing it.
  • As to deserving, know that the gift of heaven is free; this gift of knowledge is so great that no effort whatever could hope to “deserve” it.
  • Organization is impossible unless those who know the laws of harmony lay the foundation.
  • Every man must act in the rhythm of his time; such is wisdom.
  • It is no use whatever preaching wisdom to men: you must inject it into their blood.

For thousands more proverbs and words of wisdom, collected from over 40 countries, check out Proverbs from Around the World!

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