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.
Japanese Quotes on Wisdom
1. “Even a fool has at least one talent.” — Japanese Proverb
2. “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
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
If you’re enjoying these quotes, make sure to read our collection of wisdom quotes from the world’s greatest minds.
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
Wise Japanese Quotes
11. “Fall down seven times, get up eight.” — Japanese Proverb
12. “What you love to do, you will learn to do well.” — 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
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
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
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
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
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
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.
February 25, 2021 6:00 AM EST