60+ Inspirational Indian Quotes to Live Your Best Life

The philosophers of India have a great deal to offer the world when it comes to lessons about life, love and loss. Here are some of the most inspiring Indian quotes of all time.

1 / 13
Most inspiring Indian quotes
Photo: Shutterstock

The Most Inspiring Indian Quotes of All Time

For centuries, people around the world have looked to India’s great thinkers for spiritual guidance. Ninteenth-century German scholar Max Mueller went so far as to say, “If I were asked under what sky the human mind has most fully developed some of its choicest gifts, has most deeply pondered on the greatest problems of life, and has found solutions, I should point to India.” Indeed, the philosophies that originated in the Indian subcontinent—and continue to emerge today—can provide us all not only with comfort, but also with a means of coping with the trials of everyday life. Here are some of the most wise and inspiring Indian quotes of all time.

2 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Anita Desai
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“Wherever you go becomes a part of you somehow.” – Anita Desai

“Life is like a game of cards. The hand you are dealt is determinism; the way you play it is free will.” – Jawaharlal Nehru

“No one is wise by birth, for wisdom results from one own’s efforts.” – T. Krishnamacharya

“By plucking her petals, you do not gather the beauty of the flower.” – Rabindranath Tagore

“If you are wealthy, be humble. Plants bend when they bear fruit.” – Sai Baba

These hope quotes will instantly lift you up.

3 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Chetan Bhagat
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“Be so busy improving your self that you have no time to criticize others.” – Chetan Bhagat

“Do not blame God for having created the tiger, but thank him for not having given it wings.” – Indian proverb

“An autobiography can distort, facts can be realigned. But fiction never lies. It reveals the writer totally.” – V. S. Naipaul

“Remember, no one is stopping you from lighting a lamp in a dark night.” – Harivansh Rai Bacchan

“To keep your mind and nature cleansed of impurities, make a hut for your critics in your backyard and keep them close.” – Kabir

These inspiring forgiveness quotes will make you want to put down your grudges.

4 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Devdutt Pattanaik
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“What we possess is temporary, but what we become is permanent.” – Devdutt Pattanaik

“If you live on the river, befriend the crocodile.” – Indian proverb

“Don’t limit a child to your own learning, for he was born in another time.” – Rabindranath Tagore

“Devotion is that which generates knowledge; knowledge is that which fashions freedom.” – Tulsidas

“There are two aspects of individual harmony: the harmony between body and soul, and the harmony between individuals. All the tragedy in the world, in the individual and in the multitude, comes from lack of harmony. And harmony is the best given by producing harmony in one’s own life.” – Hazrat Inayat Khan

Don’t miss these short inspirational quotes to live by.

5 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Hawa Mahal
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“Blaming your faults on your nature does not change the nature of your faults.” – Indian proverb

“The true measure of spirituality is generosity, as it is indicative of detachment—even to your own ideas.” – Devdutt Pattanaik

“Man needs his difficulties because they are necessary to enjoy success.” – A.P.J. Abdul Kalam

“Need is not transitive. One may need without oneself being needed.” – Amitav Ghosh

“Real wisdom is recognizing and accepting that every experience is impermanent. With this insight you will not be overwhelmed by ups and downs.” – S.N. Goenka

These happy quotes are guaranteed to lift your spirits.

6 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes about time
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“What is now in the past was once in the future.” – Ramachandra Guha

“A coward is incapable of exhibiting love; it is the prerogative of the brave.” – Mahatma Gandhi

“The doer must do only when the receiver is ready to receive. Otherwise, the act is wasted.” – Khushwant Singh

“Even an emperor is no match for a man with no wants.” – Maharishi Raman

“Think of many things. Never place your happiness in one person’s power. Be just to yourself.” – Vikram Seth

These profound depression quotes capture exactly how you’re feeling.

7 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Jodhpur
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“They who give have all things; they who withhold have nothing.” – Indian proverb

“You cannot count on the physical proximity of someone you love, all the time. A seed that sprouts at the foot of its parent tree remains stunted until it is transplanted. Every human being, when the time comes, has to depart to seek his fulfillment in his own way.” – Valmiki

“Facts are facts and will not disappear on account of your likes.” – Jawaharlal Nehru

“I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.” – Mahatma Gandhi

“Don’t be serious, be sincere.” – Chetan Bhagat

Take inspiration from these powerful motivational quotes.

8 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Varanasi
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“We can’t change the direction of the wind, but we can adjust the sails.” – Indian proverb

“Comfort is no test of truth. Truth is often far from being comfortable.” – Swami Vivekananda

“Yoga teaches us to cure what need not be endured and endure what cannot be cured.” – B.K.S. Iyengar

“Wherever you are is the entry point.” – Kabir

“An ounce of practice is worth a thousand words.” – Mahatma Gandhi

Check out our favourite Canadian quotes of all time.

9 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Salman Rushdie
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“The only people who see the whole picture are the ones who step out of the frame.” – Salman Rushdie

“The more you see the good in them, the more you will establish good in yourself.” – Paramahansa Yogananda

“Harsh words cannot pierce your body. If anybody speaks ill of you, just continue on unperturbed.” – Sai Baba

“When you work, work as if everything depends on you. When you pray, pray as if everything depends on God.” – J.R.D. Tata

“And when all the wars are over, a butterfly will still be beautiful.” – Ruskin Bond

Considering a trip to Mumbai, Delhi or Jaipur? Don’t miss these helpful hints for Canadians travelling to India for the first time.

10 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes about friendship
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“Depth of friendship does not depend on length of acquaintance.” – Rabindranath Tagore

“Undisturbed calmness of mind is attained by cultivating friendliness toward the happy, compassion for the unhappy, delight in the virtuous, and indifference toward the wicked.” – Patanjali

“A man cannot be exactly the way he wants to be and also dream of keeping his wife.” – Manu Joseph

“Your principle should be to see everything and say nothing. The world changes so rapidly that if you want to get on you cannot afford to align yourself with any person or point of view.” – Kushwant Singh

“A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It makes the hand bleed that uses it.” – Rabindranath Tagore

“Everything in its own pace happens. The gardener may water with a hundred buckets; fruit arrives only in its season.” – Kabir

Change your perspective with these inspiring quotes from cancer survivors.

11 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Ghandi
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” – Mahatma Gandhi

“Art is the truth delivered through the medium of beauty.” – Mahadevi Verma

“That’s what careless words do. They make people love you a little less.” – Arundhati Roy

“Could fulfillment ever be felt as deeply as loss?” – Kiran Desai

“There is nothing noble in being superior to some other man. The true nobility is in being superior to your previous self.” – Indian proverb

Here are more quotes that will make you feel better about getting older.

12 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Mahatma Gandhi
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.” – Mahatma Gandhi

“The only lies for which we are truly punished are those we tell ourselves.” – V. S. Naipaul

“Why can’t we control our anger? Because we love perfection. Make a little room for imperfection in our lives.” – Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

“Justice is better than admiration.” – Indian proverb

“Refusal to accept the flow of the world is the root of all misery.” – Devdutt Pattanaik

Check out more of the world’s most beautiful proverbs about life.

13 / 13
Inspiring Indian quotes - Baba Bulleh Shah
Photo: Shutterstock/Brett Walther

“Having a soft heart in a cruel world is a sign of courage, not weakness.” – Baba Bulleh Shah

“The hunger for love is much more difficult to remove than the hunger for bread.” – Mother Teresa

“Service that is rendered without joy helps neither the servant nor the served.” – Mahatma Gandhi

“I measure the progress of a community by the degree of progress which women have achieved.” – B. R. Ambedkar

“You can change friends, but not neighbours.” – Atal Bihari Vajpayee

If you enjoyed these thought-provoking Indian quotes, don’t miss this collection of inspiring, insightful and just plain wise quotes from the Dalai Lama.

Newsletter Unit