Proverbs and sayings in the East – and something similar in the West – by: Dr. Ahmed Abdel Aziz Al-Najjar.
The East is the cradle of proverbs, sayings, wisdom, tales and myths. Books on these topics are among the most abundant in oriental literature.
We mention here for memory only the Greek spiritual wisdom, the wing of wisdom, books from which famous writers and philosophers such as Al-Jahiz, Al-Tawhid, or Ibn Arabi are derived. All of these authors showed the special importance of this type of literature that pervaded Eastern civilization.
This group is not only a presentation of the rule of Eastern cultures, but an invitation to reflect on the universality of human behavior.
If understanding and mutual respect are the basis of all cooperation between people, we hope that this modest group, and with their comparisons, will bring a contribution to this necessary dialogue between cultures at a time of globalization:
Whatever our experience and culture in dealing with the pitfalls and paths of life, this book is here to talk and comfort you in the face of troubled life; to give us hope for everyone without distinction of race or religion.
The author Dr Akef Soufan has presented in this book a collection of about six hundred wisdoms and sayings. The famous ones in the east drawn from different collection of proverbs and books of poetry were grouped according to their origins and themes, knowing however, that one saying can be taken in several domains. The interest of this book lies mainly in the choices made by the author who has succeeded to put forward how much these are a source of inspiration, meditation and discovery before being considered as rules of conduct.
A strenuous effort was made to trace the history of wisdom to know the one who said wisdom or proverb, to determine the time period in which it was said, and to meet it with Western sayings and proverbs, which were said about the same subjects, to show the extent of similarity and difference.
In addition to monitoring the most important references that he was able to find, with a comparison of wisdom and eastern proverbs with a Western one, which gave this book special importance to the most important international libraries.
This book was published in 2008 by author house for Studies and Publishing in London, and had a wide resonance with writers and critics,
A bouquet of Arabic proverbs.
It is known that a proverb may come from an incident, from a metaphor, from a story or an extract of poetry. We have chosen a bouquet of ancient proverbs of pure Arabic language which recalls briefly an incident or a story. We made sure to present to the reader an example of a story already mentioned at the end of each proverb.
. Give the bow to his sharpener*
Oil in the paste is never lost
Nothing is closer to a man than his shadow.*
Beauty lies in the speech
Criticism precedes punishment.
It is better to rebuke ones’ brothers than lose them. (** (.
It is a good shooting that of a bad shooter. (Abu Darda).
A problem is solved when it gets
tougher.(Abu Al Fadl Al Nuzari-12th century)
He behaves as lion towards me and is an ostrich in war.( Omran Al Sadoussi 7th century).
News come from where you least expect it. (Turfa Ibn Al Abd) *. (
A farmer for himself, his harvest for the others. (Ali Ibn Abi Talib).
A slaughtered animal suffers no more.*
A satiated person cooks slowly for a hungry one.
To throw one’s buckets among the buckets is to make one’s voice heard in the concert.
The one who fears the duel will never succeed.
More numerous than ants *
Tighter than a needle’s eye.
Softer than dawn sleeping.
More cautious than the chameleon.
More stupid than an Ostrich.
More dangerous than a scorpion.
Make your visit short and you will be appreciated. (* (
Need engenders the means. ** (
I hear a crackle, but I do not see a flour.
A needle in a haystack.
A husband of wood, and not a dromedary. (ِAl Isba Al Idwani).