Zhuang Zhou, often known as Zhuangzi ("Master Zhuang"), was an influential Chinese philosopher who lived around the 4th century BC during the Warring States period, a period corresponding to the summit of Chinese philosophy, the Hundred Schools of Thought. He is credited with writing—in part or in whole—a work known by his name, the Zhuangzi, which expresses a philosophy of skepticism.

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Happiness is the absence of the striving for happiness.

Rewards and punishment is the lowest form of education.

Life comes from the earth and life returns to the earth.

Cherish that which is within you and shut off that which is without, for much knowledge is a curse.

Those who realize their folly are not true fools.

Those who seek to satisfy the mind of man by hampering it with ceremonies and music and affecting charity and devotion have lost their original nature.

I dreamed I was a butterfly flitting around in the sky, then I awoke. Now I wonder: Am I a man who dreamt of being a butterfly or am I a butterfly dreaming that I am a man?

Great wisdom is generous, petty wisdom is contentious.

All existing things are really one. We regard those that are beautiful and rare as valuable and those that are ugly as foul and rotten The foul and rotten may come to be transformed into what is rare and valuable and the rare and valuable into what is foul and rotten.

I know the joy of fishes in the river through my own joy as I go walking along the same river.

Men honor what lies within the sphere of their knowledge but do not realize how dependent they are on what lies beyond it.

Flow with whatever may happen and let your mind be free. Stay centered by accepting whatever you are doing. This is the ultimate.

Where can I find a man who has forgotten words so I can have a word with him?

We cling to our own point of view as though everything depended on it. Yet our opinions have no permanence, like autumn and winter they gradually pass away.

I do not know whether I was then a man dreaming I was a butterfly or whether I am now a butterfly dreaming I am a man.