Good Advice from Three Wise Sages

“Do not give your attention to what others do
or fail to do; give it to what you do or fail to do.”
— Siddhārtha Gautama Buddha, from The Dhammapda, verse 50 (translated by Eknath Easwaran)

“Don’t waste the rest of your time here worrying about other people—unless it affects the common good. It will keep you from doing anything useful. You’ll be too preoccupied with what so-and-so is doing, and why, and what they’re saying, and what they’re thinking, and what they’re up to, and all the other things that throw you off and keep you from focusing on your own mind.”
— Marcus Aurelius, from Meditations, Book III, chap. 4 (translated by Gregory Hays)

Weapon after weapon conquers
Everything but chaos,
Business after business provides
A craze of waste,
Law after law breeds
A multitude of thieves.
Therefore a sensible man says:
If I keep from meddling with people, they take care of themselves,
If I keep from commanding people, they behave themselves,
If I keep from preaching at people, they improve themselves,
If I keep from imposing on people, they become themselves.
— Lao Tzu, from the Tao Teh Ching [The Way of Life], 57 (translated by Witter Bynner)

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