image

Help us share the article:

10 Arabic Proverbs to Ignite Your Passion for Knowledge and Learning

alifBeeLogo

by Dania Ghraoui

30 Oct, 2023 . 4 mins read

Culture

Learning Tips

Arabic Proverbs and Culture

Arabic Proverbs

Welcome to another article focused on the Arabic language and Arabic culture. In this series of new blogs, we are going to explore the richness and beauty of Arabic culture through a collection of Arabic proverbs. In every blog in this series, we will learn new proverbs about different themes and topics. 

Along with the proverbs, we will also provide their English idiomatic equivalents or explanations to emphasize the universality of learning across different languages and cultures. These proverbs offer timeless lessons that can inspire us to pursue knowledge, grow, and live life with thoughtfulness and understanding.

Ready to boost your language with our 10 wise Arabic proverbs? Here we go!

 

1. العِلْمُ فِي الصِّغَرِ كَالنَّقْشِ عَلَى الحَجَر

\Alʻilmu fī alṣṣighari kālnnaqshi ʻalá alḥajar\

(Knowledge in childhood is like engraving on stone)

This proverb emphasizes the importance of learning and acquiring knowledge from a young age. Just like engraving on stone, the lessons learned in childhood remain with us throughout our lives, forming the foundation of our understanding and worldview. There are two similar proverbs in English: 1)  “Catch them young” and 2) “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.”

 

2. اِثْنَانِ لَا يَشْبَعَانْ: طَالِبُ عِلْمٍ وَطَالِبُ مَال

\Ithnāni lā yashbaʻān : ṭālibu ʻilmin waṭālibu māl\

(Two appetites are never satisfied: the pursuit of knowledge and the pursuit of wealth.)

Our second proverb highlights the idea that the pursuit of knowledge and wealth can be insatiable. Both desires, when properly channeled, can lead to personal growth and success. The closest equivalent in the English language is “The appetite grows with what it feeds on.”

 

3. عَلِّمْنِي كَيْفَ أَصْطَادُ وَلَا تُعْطِنِي سَمَكَةً كُلَّ يَوْم

\ʻAllimnī kayfa aṣṭādu walā tuʻṭinī samakatan kulla yawm\

(I'd rather you teach me how to fish than give me a fish every day )

This proverb stresses the importance of teaching skills rather than simply providing ready resources. Empowering someone with knowledge enables them to become self-reliant and ultimately improves their quality of life. This Arabic proverb has a well-known English equivalent that says: “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.”

 

4. العِلْمُ نُوْرٌ وَالجَهْلُ ظَلَام

\Alʻilmu nūrun wāljahlu ẓalām\

(Knowledge illuminates, while ignorance casts shadows.)

This proverb compares knowledge to light and ignorance to darkness, emphasizing the transformative power of education and the importance of seeking knowledge to improve oneself and the world around them.

 

5. مَنْ تَعَلَّمَ لُغَةَ قَوْمٍ أَمِنَ مَكْرَهُم

\Man taʻallama lughata qawmin amina makrahum\

(He who learns a people's language will be safe from their deceit)

Learning a new language not only allows us to communicate with others but also helps us understand their culture, values, and way of thinking. This proverb highlights the importance of cultural understanding and empathy in a globalized world.

 

6. خُذِ الحِكْمَةَ مِنْ أَفْوَاهِ البُسَطَاء

\Khudhi alḥikmata min afwāhi albusaṭāʼ\

(Take wisdom from the mouth of the simple)

This proverb reminds us that wisdom can be found in unexpected places and that we should remain open to learning from others, regardless of their perceived intelligence or status.

 

7. مَا كُلُّ مَا يُعْلَمْ يُقَال

\Mā kullu mā yuʻlam yuqāl\

(Not everything you know is worth saying)

This proverb underlines the importance of discretion and tact in communication. It suggests that sometimes it’s wiser to hold back certain information or opinions rather than sharing them indiscriminately. The English language gives similar wisdom with two similar proverbs: 1) “Discretion is the better part of valor” and 2) “Silence is golden”

 

8. إذَا تَمَّ العَقْلُ نَقُصَ الكَلَام

\Idhā tamma alʻaqlu naquṣa alkalām\

(With a mature mind comes less talk.)

This proverb highlights the value of thoughtful speech and the idea that wisdom often comes with restraint in communication. It serves as a reminder to choose our words carefully and to speak with purpose. There is a similar proverb in English that says: “Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something

 

9. مَنْ طَلَبَ العُلَا سَهِرَ الَّليَالِي

\Man ṭalaba alʻulā sahira allalyālī\

(He who aspires to greatness must endure sleepless nights.)

This Arabic saying emphasizes the necessary dedication and sacrifice that come with seeking success or greatness. It tells us that nothing worthwhile comes easily; greatness often requires late nights and long hours of work or study. It is a reminder that in the pursuit of our ambitions, we will face challenges that require us to step out of our comfort zones, make sacrifices, and display determination.

As you continue your journey of learning Arabic, remember this proverb when the going gets tough. Embrace the process and understand that these ‘sleepless nights’ will be worth it in the end. There is a similar proverb in English that says: “No pain, no gain.”

 

10. لَا يُنَالُ العِلْمُ بِرَاحَة الجِسْم

\Lā yunālu alʻilmu birāḥah aljism\

(One cannot acquire knowledge without exertion.)

Our last proverb underlines the idea that gaining knowledge or learning anything new requires effort and hard work. It’s not just about mental effort, but also about the physical strain one might experience during learning. It’s a reminder that comfort and ease rarely lead to profound learning experiences.

This proverb is especially relevant to language learners. Learning Arabic, like learning any language, requires consistent effort and practice. It’s not always going to be easy, but the wisdom and understanding you will gain from the process will be worth the effort.

 

Conclusion

Arabic proverbs offer invaluable insights into the importance of knowledge and wisdom in our lives. By examining these proverbs and their English equivalents, we can appreciate the universality of wisdom across different languages and cultures.

So, make sure to practice using them in your daily conversations to add depth and value to them and show your appreciation of the culture behind them. To help you further practice these proverbs and to check you have learned them, we have prepared a short quiz that you can take here. Check your knowledge after reading the blog and anytime you would like to review what you learned.

Don’t forget to check our Planner which you can also use to boost your learning journey. We have equipped this planner with a rich 30-page worksheet accompanied by over 200 practical exercises and activities, so it could serve as a powerful tool to back your acquired knowledge and newly learned language and push your learning journey forward with loads of practice opportunities.

We wish you a delightful learning experience!

Previous

Arabic Word of the Day: رَأْس

28 Oct, 2023 . 4 mins read

Next

Want to learn Arabic?

Achieve incredible

results with our platform

googlePlay Google play

app App Store

Arabic Proverbs and Culture

Arabic Proverbs

Welcome to another article focused on the Arabic language and Arabic culture. In this series of new blogs, we are going to explore the richness and beauty of Arabic culture through a collection of Arabic proverbs. In every blog in this series, we will learn new proverbs about different themes and topics. 

Along with the proverbs, we will also provide their English idiomatic equivalents or explanations to emphasize the universality of learning across different languages and cultures. These proverbs offer timeless lessons that can inspire us to pursue knowledge, grow, and live life with thoughtfulness and understanding.

Ready to boost your language with our 10 wise Arabic proverbs? Here we go!

 

1. العِلْمُ فِي الصِّغَرِ كَالنَّقْشِ عَلَى الحَجَر

\Alʻilmu fī alṣṣighari kālnnaqshi ʻalá alḥajar\

(Knowledge in childhood is like engraving on stone)

This proverb emphasizes the importance of learning and acquiring knowledge from a young age. Just like engraving on stone, the lessons learned in childhood remain with us throughout our lives, forming the foundation of our understanding and worldview. There are two similar proverbs in English: 1)  “Catch them young” and 2) “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.”

 

2. اِثْنَانِ لَا يَشْبَعَانْ: طَالِبُ عِلْمٍ وَطَالِبُ مَال

\Ithnāni lā yashbaʻān : ṭālibu ʻilmin waṭālibu māl\

(Two appetites are never satisfied: the pursuit of knowledge and the pursuit of wealth.)

Our second proverb highlights the idea that the pursuit of knowledge and wealth can be insatiable. Both desires, when properly channeled, can lead to personal growth and success. The closest equivalent in the English language is “The appetite grows with what it feeds on.”

 

3. عَلِّمْنِي كَيْفَ أَصْطَادُ وَلَا تُعْطِنِي سَمَكَةً كُلَّ يَوْم

\ʻAllimnī kayfa aṣṭādu walā tuʻṭinī samakatan kulla yawm\

(I'd rather you teach me how to fish than give me a fish every day )

This proverb stresses the importance of teaching skills rather than simply providing ready resources. Empowering someone with knowledge enables them to become self-reliant and ultimately improves their quality of life. This Arabic proverb has a well-known English equivalent that says: “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.”

 

4. العِلْمُ نُوْرٌ وَالجَهْلُ ظَلَام

\Alʻilmu nūrun wāljahlu ẓalām\

(Knowledge illuminates, while ignorance casts shadows.)

This proverb compares knowledge to light and ignorance to darkness, emphasizing the transformative power of education and the importance of seeking knowledge to improve oneself and the world around them.

 

5. مَنْ تَعَلَّمَ لُغَةَ قَوْمٍ أَمِنَ مَكْرَهُم

\Man taʻallama lughata qawmin amina makrahum\

(He who learns a people's language will be safe from their deceit)

Learning a new language not only allows us to communicate with others but also helps us understand their culture, values, and way of thinking. This proverb highlights the importance of cultural understanding and empathy in a globalized world.

 

6. خُذِ الحِكْمَةَ مِنْ أَفْوَاهِ البُسَطَاء

\Khudhi alḥikmata min afwāhi albusaṭāʼ\

(Take wisdom from the mouth of the simple)

This proverb reminds us that wisdom can be found in unexpected places and that we should remain open to learning from others, regardless of their perceived intelligence or status.

 

7. مَا كُلُّ مَا يُعْلَمْ يُقَال

\Mā kullu mā yuʻlam yuqāl\

(Not everything you know is worth saying)

This proverb underlines the importance of discretion and tact in communication. It suggests that sometimes it’s wiser to hold back certain information or opinions rather than sharing them indiscriminately. The English language gives similar wisdom with two similar proverbs: 1) “Discretion is the better part of valor” and 2) “Silence is golden”

 

8. إذَا تَمَّ العَقْلُ نَقُصَ الكَلَام

\Idhā tamma alʻaqlu naquṣa alkalām\

(With a mature mind comes less talk.)

This proverb highlights the value of thoughtful speech and the idea that wisdom often comes with restraint in communication. It serves as a reminder to choose our words carefully and to speak with purpose. There is a similar proverb in English that says: “Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something

 

9. مَنْ طَلَبَ العُلَا سَهِرَ الَّليَالِي

\Man ṭalaba alʻulā sahira allalyālī\

(He who aspires to greatness must endure sleepless nights.)

This Arabic saying emphasizes the necessary dedication and sacrifice that come with seeking success or greatness. It tells us that nothing worthwhile comes easily; greatness often requires late nights and long hours of work or study. It is a reminder that in the pursuit of our ambitions, we will face challenges that require us to step out of our comfort zones, make sacrifices, and display determination.

As you continue your journey of learning Arabic, remember this proverb when the going gets tough. Embrace the process and understand that these ‘sleepless nights’ will be worth it in the end. There is a similar proverb in English that says: “No pain, no gain.”

 

10. لَا يُنَالُ العِلْمُ بِرَاحَة الجِسْم

\Lā yunālu alʻilmu birāḥah aljism\

(One cannot acquire knowledge without exertion.)

Our last proverb underlines the idea that gaining knowledge or learning anything new requires effort and hard work. It’s not just about mental effort, but also about the physical strain one might experience during learning. It’s a reminder that comfort and ease rarely lead to profound learning experiences.

This proverb is especially relevant to language learners. Learning Arabic, like learning any language, requires consistent effort and practice. It’s not always going to be easy, but the wisdom and understanding you will gain from the process will be worth the effort.

 

Conclusion

Arabic proverbs offer invaluable insights into the importance of knowledge and wisdom in our lives. By examining these proverbs and their English equivalents, we can appreciate the universality of wisdom across different languages and cultures.

So, make sure to practice using them in your daily conversations to add depth and value to them and show your appreciation of the culture behind them. To help you further practice these proverbs and to check you have learned them, we have prepared a short quiz that you can take here. Check your knowledge after reading the blog and anytime you would like to review what you learned.

Don’t forget to check our Planner which you can also use to boost your learning journey. We have equipped this planner with a rich 30-page worksheet accompanied by over 200 practical exercises and activities, so it could serve as a powerful tool to back your acquired knowledge and newly learned language and push your learning journey forward with loads of practice opportunities.

We wish you a delightful learning experience!

Help us share the article:

linkIcon facebookIcon twitterIcon enstaIcon

Previous

blogImage1

Arabic Word of the Day: رَأْس

30 Oct, 2023 . 4 mins read

Next

Want to learn Arabic?

Achieve incredible

results with our platform

googlePlay Google play

app App Store

Want to learn Arabic?

Achieve incredible

results with our platform

googlePlay Google play

app App Store

More from AlifBee Blog

Thumbnail [100%x225]

6 Essential Practices in Eid Al-Fitr

Eid Al-Fitr Day First, let me start by wishing you a very happy Eid Al-Fitr. Second, let me tell you […]

by Dania Ghraoui

14 Apr, 2024 . 3 mins read
Thumbnail [100%x225]

Celebrate Eid Al-Fitr with 6 Arabic Phrases

We wish our dear readers, Arabic language learners, and the Muslim community a Happy Eid. In today’s blog, we will […]

by Dania Ghraoui

09 Apr, 2024 . 2 mins read
Thumbnail [100%x225]

Five Essential Occasions in Islam

Celebrated Occasions in Islam Five main occasions are celebrated by Muslims around the world every year. Each holds a unique […]

by Dania Ghraoui

06 Apr, 2024 . 3 mins read
Thumbnail [100%x225]

6 Iconic Ramadan Words Explained 

Iconic Ramadan Words As the holy month of Ramadan graces us once again, it brings with it a unique blend […]

by Dania Ghraoui

04 Apr, 2024 . 4 mins read

Our mission is to make Arabic easy and fun to learn state of the Art technology and language learning techniques...

Our mission is to make Arabic easy and fun to learn state of the Art technology and language learning techniques...


© 2022 AlifBee. All rights reserved.

© 2022 AlifBee. All rights reserved.