90 Japanese Quotes and Proverbs on Wise Everyday Life to Help You

Whether it’s about friendship, death, marriage, love, life, wisdom, or other broad topics, these Japanese quotes can help you find clarity or closure in your life.

Japan is recognized worldwide as not just a modern tourist destination, but a nation with a rich history that can still be found on every street corner.

The country has influence worldwide, in some ways that have been better than others.

Today, it’s easy to get a taste of Japan no matter where you are in the world; whether it’s eating at a Japanese restaurant, watching Japanese films, or reading Japanese stories.

Most people—even if they have never visited the Land of the Rising Sun—are familiar with at least some aspects of Japanese culture.

And by reading these Japanese quotes, you can get even more familiar with the Japanese outlook on a number of different themes we experience throughout life.

Don’t forget to also check out these Irish quotes and proverbs get your spirits up.

Also, check out our most popular quote article, a list of short inspirational quotes for daily wisdom. 

See the rest of our quote database for even more inspirational ideas and thoughts.

Japanese Quotes on Wisdom

1. “Even a fool has at least one talent.” — Japanese Proverb

2. “What you love to do, you will learn to do well.”  — Japanese Proverb

3. “Even monkeys fall from trees.” — Japanese Proverb

4. “When you reject gifts from heaven you will be rewarded in hell.” — Japanese Proverb

5. “Vision without action is a dream. Action without vision is a nightmare.” — Japanese Proverb

6. “A broken mirror can not be made to shine.” — Japanese Proverb

7. “Boasting begins where wisdom stops.” — Japanese Proverb

8. “Spilled water does not return to the tray.” — Japanese Proverb

9. “With many little strokes a large tree is felled.” — Japanese Proverb

10. “If you understand everything, you must be misinformed.”  — Japanese Proverb

If you’re enjoying these quotes, make sure to read our collection of wisdom quotes from the world’s greatest minds.

You will also enjoy our article on Pennywise quotes.

Wise Japanese Quotes

11. “Fall down seven times, get up eight.” — Japanese Proverb

12. “If you try, you may succeed.If you don’t try, you will not succeed. This is true for all things. Not succeeding is the result of not trying.” — Japanese Proverb

13. “The smallest good deed is better than the grandest good intention.” — Japanese Proverb

14. “Nothing so visible than what you want to hide.” — Japanese Proverb

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15. “A doubtful mind creates devils in the dark.” — Japanese Proverb

16. “Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.” — Japanese Proverb

17. “Beginning is easy – Continuing is hard.” — Japanese Proverb

18. “Great men succeed in their later years.” — Japanese Proverb

19. “The tongue is but three inches long, yet it can kill a man six feet high.” — Japanese Proverb

20. “Depend on your walking stick, not on other people.” — Japanese Proverb

21. “Nothing is more expensive than free.” — Japanese Proverb

You will also enjoy our article on Samurai quotes.

Japanese quotes to elevate your mind

22. “One who smiles rather than rages is always the stronger.” — Japanese Proverb

23. “Wherever you live, you come to love it.” — Japanese Proverb

24. “Many skills is no skill.” — Japanese Proverb

25. “The day you decide to do it is your lucky day.” — Japanese Proverb

26. “When you do something wholeheartedly, you are not in need of helpers.” — Japanese Proverb

27. “Experience the beauties of nature, and in doing so learn about yourself.” — Japanese Proverb

28. “If you believe everything you read, better not read.” — Japanese Proverb

29. “The face becomes a mirror of the soul.” — Japanese Proverb

30. “A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials.” — Japanese Proverb

31. “One kind word can warm three winter months.” — Japanese Proverb

32. “We should never forget our beginner’s spirit”. — Japanese Proverb

33. “The bamboo that bends is stronger than the oak that resists.” — Japanese Proverb

34. “We learn little from victory, much from defeat.” — Japanese Proverb

If you’re enjoying these quotes, you’ll love our collection of Naruto quotes about life, success and relationships.

Japanese Quotes on Love and Marriage

35. “All married women are not wives.” — Japanese Proverb

36. “Never rely on the glory of the morning nor the smiles of your mother-in-law”— Japanese Proverb

37. “If there is love, smallpox scars are as pretty as dimples.” — Japanese Proverb

38. “Who travels for love finds a thousand miles not longer than one.” — Japanese Proverb

39. “In the eyes of a lover a pock-marked face is one with pretty dimples.” — Japanese Proverb

40. “Eat before falling in love.” — Japanese Proverb

41. “Love and a cough cannot be hidden.” — Japanese Proverb

42. “When someone offends you, you haven’t given him enough love.” — Japanese Proverb

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43. “The extreme form of passionate love is secret love.” — Japanese Proverb

Japanese Quotes on Friendship

44. “No road is too long in the company of a friend.” — Japanese Proverb

45. “Ten different people bring ten different colors.” — Japanese Proverb

46. “The good fellow to everyone is a good friend to no one.” — Japanese Proverb

47. “When the character of a man is not clear to you, look at his friends.” — Japanese Proverb

You will also enjoy our article on ikigai quotes.

Japanese Quotes on Death

48. “Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.” — Japanese Proverb

49. “We are no more than candles burning in the wind.” — Japanese Proverb

50. “Even when months and days are long, life is short.” — Japanese Proverb

More Japanese quotes and proverbs

51. “What each of us believes in is up to us, but life is impossible without believing in something.” – Kintetsu Takamori

52. Not only must a warrior be strong with his bow, but he must have a heart full of pity for all living creatures.” – Eiji Yoshikawa

53. “What comes from the heart will go to the heart.” – Renae Lucas-Hall

54. “Haiku is not a shriek, a howl, a sigh, or a yawn; rather, it is the deep breath of life.” – Santoka Taneda

55. “If love goes too far, it turns into cruelty.” – Haruo Shirane

56. The blue of the sky is one of the most special colors in the world because the color is deep but see-through both at the same time.” – Cynthia Kadohata

57. “After all, things thought but left unsaid only fester inside you.” – Yoshida Kenkō

58. “No other animal in the world would try to defy the laws of nature, but humans are a very peculiar species.” – Hiro Arikawa

59. “Imagination is ruler of darkness, twisting and racking one’s mind until it succumbs to the will of the master.”

60. “Words are not meant to stir the air only: they are capable of moving greater things.” – Natsume Soseki

Japanese quotes and proverbs to contemplate on

61. “A frog in a well knows nothing of the sea.” — Japanese Proverb

62. “The water flows.” — Japanese Proverb

63. “The mouth is the source of disaster.” — Japanese Proverb

64. “Self-work, self-profit.” — Japanese Proverb

65. “The nail that sticks out is struck.” — Japanese Proverb

66. “Continuance is power.” — Japanese Proverb

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67. “Stumbling seven times but standing up eight.” — Japanese Proverb

68. “Believe in people, but believe in yourself a hundred times more.” — Japanese Proverb

 69. “There’s luck in the leftovers.” — Japanese Proverb

70. “If you have no failure in life, you will fail in life.” — Japanese Proverb

Wise Japanese quotes that will make you think

71. “Suspicion will raise bogies.” — Japanese Proverb

72. “Dead men tell no tales.” — Japanese Proverb

73. “Die in peace.” — Japanese Proverb

74. “One stroke, two halves.” — Japanese Proverb

75. “To lose is to win.” — Japanese Proverb

76. “You can’t fight without an opponent.” — Japanese Proverb

77. “Only a fool deals with a fool.” — Japanese Proverb

78. “When it rains, earth hardens.” — Japanese Proverb

79. “A monk for 3 days.” — Japanese Proverb

80. “Fall seven times, get up eight.” — Japanese Proverb

Japanese Quotes To Inspire You During Tough Times

81. “Let what is past flow away downstream.” ― Japanese Proverb

82. “A frog in a well does not know the great ocean.” ― Japanese Proverb

83. “You can know ten things by learning one.” ― Japanese Proverb

84. “Everyone makes mistakes. Nobody’s perfect.” ― Japanese Proverb

85. “The reverse side also has a reverse side.” ― Japanese Proverb

86. “There are hardships and there are delights..” ― Japanese Proverb

87. “Better to be a crystal and to be broken, than to be a tile upon the housetop.” ― Japanese Proverb

88. “To overcome a desperate situation, make a complete turn in one sudden burst.” ― Japanese Proverb

89. “Adversity is the foundation of virtue.” ― Japanese Proverb

90. “Who chases two rabbits catches neither.” ― Japanese Proverb

What did you learn from these Japanese quotes and proverbs?

Japan has given the world so much and the country has had a powerful influence on other nations and people for thousands of years.

And although the country is known for leading the world in technology, their history and culture is still prevalent in all aspects of Japanese life.

Now, in addition to your current knowledge of Japanese culture and/or history, you can impress your friends with a witty Japanese proverb to spark their interest.

Or you can store these quotes in a notebook and take them out on a rainy day.

What’s your biggest takeaway from these Japanese quotes and proverbs?

Do you have any other favorite quotes to add?

Let us know in the comment section below.

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