Proverbs for Graduation
Not everything a scholar knows he learned from his teacher.
Education is the work of your entire life. -Haiti
Learning is for life, eating is for today. -Kiswahili
Learning is like sailing the ocean: no one has ever seen it all. -Africa
Inquiry saves a man from mistakes. He who makes no inquiry, gets himself into trouble.
-Benin, Nigeria, Togo (Yoruba)
No one is without knowledge except him who asks no questions.
-Central Africa (Fulfulde)
Knowledge is like a forest bird, one person alone can't catch it.
A traveler who asks questions doesn't miss his way.
No matter how full the river, it still wants to grow.
-Democratic Republic of the Congo
If you understand the beginning well, the end won't trouble you.
Where you will sit when you are old shows where you stood in youth.
- Benin, Nigeria, Togo (Yoruba)
Better you lose time than character.
Rice is one, but there are many ways of cooking.
Some birds avoid the water, ducks look for it.
It is survival not bravery that makes a man climb a thorny tree.
The river may be wide, but it can be crossed.
If one person kindles the fire, others can take live coals from it.
A person is a person because of other persons.
Though a tree grows ever so high, the falling leaves return to its roots.
If you climb up a tree, you must climb down the same tree.
There is no foot that does not stumble.
-South Africa (Zulu)
For more African proverbs for graduation and other special occasions, please see Lifelines: The African Book of Proverbs.