La Rochefaucauld, with his Maxims takes his place among the great moralists of all times. I read him when I was in high school (Grolier Classics). His works write about etiquette, character, love and faith, among others. Most of his sayings contain wisdom and inspiring reflections.
Check the following:
1. We need greater virtues to sustain good than evil fortune.
It is not a matter of good luck, alone, because good fortune comes with virtues of diligence, perseverance, and generosity, among others. Observe how communities work for progress.
2. Interest blinds some and makes some see.
The glitter of gold traps some people into wrong actions. But somehow, there are still those who use it for an attainment of a goal, like using money and profits wisely.
3. Neither love nor fire can subsist without perpetual motion; both cease to live as soon as they cease to hope, or to fear.
To keep love sweetly, hope into hope, though fear and longing. Flames must keep moving or burning hot, or the fire dies, so as love.
4. Everyone blames his memory; no one blames his judgment.
Poor memory, often, one can’t be honest enough to say he’d /she’d been wrong.
5. Ability wins us the esteem of true men; luck that of the people.
True men are those who work piously, and those who accept responsibilities; those without courage depend on luck alone and wait lazily.
6. Who lives without folly is not so wise as he thinks.
No man is perfect. Those who say they’re perfect are never wise.
7. Man’s merit, like the crops, has its season.
There is a time for everything (Ecclesiastes). There is a time to plant. There is time to succeed. There is a time to be happy and a time to be sad; a time to live and a time to die.
8. We always like those who admire us; we do not always like those whom we admire.
This can pertain to success and business; to competition or leadership.
9. We pardon in the degree that we love.
Love forgives. How much do you love? Remember Jesus Christ, the Jew who died on the cross to save humanity.
10. To be a great man, one should know how to profit by every phase of fortune.
Think positively, and in every loss learn and look at the bright side of life. “Lord, let me accept the things I cannot change, to change the things I can, and to know the difference.” (Rune prayer)
Francois, Sixth Duc de La Rochefaucauld (de la rosh foo ko), belongs to that small group of men who pins down words in elegant witty language. He found his subjects in the polite salon where the conversation of a few select sophisticates contributed to a sharpening of his perceptions and helped him to refine the meanings behind gestures and actions. He is a literary artist of seventeenth-century France.