Pirkei Avot

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Once we realize that imperfect understanding is the human condition, there is no shame in being wrong, only in failing to correct our mistakes.
George Soros
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Pirkei Avot (literally "Chapters of the fathers", usually translated "Ethics of the Fathers") is a section of the Mishnah. Unlike most of the Mishnah, which deals with Jewish law, this is mainly a compilation of ethical sayings by rabbis mentioned in the Talmud.


  • By three things is the world preserved: by truth, by judgment and by peace.
    • 1:18 (by Simeon ben Gamaliel)
  • What is the best course for a man to choose for himself? Whatever he finds to be honourable, and also brings him honour from others.
  • איזהו החכם? הלומד מכל אדם
    • Translation: Who is the wise person? The one who learns from every person.
    • 4:1 (by Ben Zoma)
  • Be a tail to lions rather than a head to jackals.
    • 4:20
    • Variant: Join the company of lions rather than assume the lead among foxes.

See also

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