34 Native American Quotes Full Of Wisdom To Live Your Life By

As a people, Native American Indians have a great wealth of wisdom that we should treasure and pay heed to. A historically tribal culture, Indian populations have shrunk dramatically since Columbus arrived in the land that is currently the United States, but those that survive are proud of their heritage.

They have their own, very unique, view of the world and the challenges that we, as a species, face. As you’ll see from the upcoming quotes and sayings, there is a great deal we could learn from the long-standing Indian culture. The name of the tribe and person from which the sayings are believed to originate are included.


Seek wisdom, not knowledge. Knowledge is of the past, Wisdom is of the future.
– Lumbee

Wisdom comes only when you stop looking for it and start living the life the Creator intended for you.
– Hopi

If we wonder often, the gift of knowledge will come.
– Arapaho

Our first teacher is our own heart.
– Cheyenne


It is no longer good enough to cry peace, we must act peace, live peace and live in peace.
– Shenandoah

Between individuals, as between nations, peace means respect for the rights of others.
– Benito Juarez, Zapoteca

Force, no matter how concealed, begets resistance.
– Lakota

Like the grasses showing tender faces to each other, thus should we do, for this was the wish of the Grandfathers of the World.
– Black Elk, Oglala Lakota Sioux

I do not think the measure of a civilization is how tall its buildings of concrete are, but rather how well its people have learned to relate to their environment and fellow man.
– Sun Bear, Chippewa

Children/Future Generations

Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children.

In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations.
– Iroquois Maxim

Children learn from what they see. We need to set an example of truth and action.
– Howard Rainer, Taos Pueblo-Creek

Cherish youth, but trust old age.
– Pueblo

Grown men can learn from very little children for the hearts of the little children are pure. Therefore, the Great Spirit may show to them many things which older people miss.
– Black Elk, Oglala Lakota Sioux


They are not dead who live in the hearts they leave behind.
– Tuscarora

When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced. Live your life so that when you die, the world cries and you rejoice.
– Cherokee

When you know who you are; when your mission is clear and you burn with the inner fire of unbreakable will; no cold can touch your heart; no deluge can dampen your purpose. You know that you are alive.
– Chief Seattle, Duwamish


The soul would have no rainbow if the eye had no tears.

Don’t be afraid to cry. It will free your mind of sorrowful thoughts.
– Hopi

Do not wrong or hate your neighbor for it is not he that you wrong but yourself.
– Pima

Certain things catch your eye, but pursue only those that capture your heart.

Purpose of Life

You already possess everything necessary to become great.
– Crow

He who would do great things should not attempt them all alone.
– Seneca

Man has responsibility, not power.
– Tuscarora


When a man moves away from nature his heart becomes hard.
– Lakota

With all things and in all things, we are relatives.
– Sioux

The frog does not drink up the pond in which he lives.
– Sioux

Take only what you need and leave the land as you found it.
– Arapaho

Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.
– Chief Seattle

When all the trees have been cut down, when all the animals have been hunted, when all the waters are polluted, when all the air is unsafe to breathe, only then will you discover you cannot eat money.
– Cree Prophecy

And Some More…

A danger foreseen is half-avoided.
– Cheyenne

Don’t let yesterday use up too much of today.
– Cherokee

Listen, or your tongue will make you deaf.

Give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way.

Which of these sayings do you like the most? Let us know in the comments below.

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