I was browsing http://www.brainyquote.com/ website and found that the top one quote on hot topic "life" is an quote from Confucius(http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/topics/topic_life.html):

"Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated"

I do read part of The Analects of Confucius however I doesn't remember any quote with similar meaning. what is the exact original/source text of quote above? How should I translate it to Chinese? I have tried google translation but only get Vernacular Chinese sentence which of course could not be the original one.

1 Answer 1


On the wikipedia page for Confucius, in the "Misattributed" section, you can find this quote:

Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.

Attributed on the internet but not found in print prior to an attribution in Aero Digest, 1949, p. 115

  • 3
    Some source shows it's actually from 《新唐书·陆象先传》: "天下本无事,庸人扰之为烦耳。" a.k.a the well-known saying "世上本无事,庸人自扰之。"
    – Stan
    May 12, 2016 at 11:06
  • @Stan I think that comment should be an answer.
    – KWeiss
    May 12, 2016 at 14:13
  • @KWeiss Haven't done enough search work. Maybe Confucius had said something similar. So I didn't put it as an answer.
    – Stan
    May 12, 2016 at 15:10

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.