Proverb – China

Xi shaow quey jo si dwan da quey.

“Eat small advantage means earning great advantage.”

Letting people take small advantages of you will ultimately be a great advantage for you in the future.

Joseph told me he heard this proverb from his dad as a child, but that he did not understand it until he was older.  He was born and raised in Taiwan and went to school there until he moved to America to attend college at John’s Hopkins University.  He told me that as a child, his dad would tell him that it is important not to worry about the little things and to sometimes let others take advantage of you a little bit.

He gave me a very insightful example.  He said that if you were about to go on a road trip with a friend and that the drive would take five hours, or shifts, to complete.  Joseph said that you should allow your friend to drive two of the hours/ shifts and to drive the other three shifts yourself.  He said that you should not complain and make a big deal about it either.  He said that later on, your friend will have very good thoughts about you and think very highly of you.  He said that this friend may eventually serve as an ally or reference in the future.  The friend may comment to others about your selflessness and help them see you in a good light as well.

Joseph said that it is important not to “count every thing.” Essentially he meant that it is important not to rely on tit for tat and expect something in return every time you do something for someone else.

I have never heard this particular quote before, but I have heard similar concepts, such as karma or the “golden rule”.  This proverb make me think about how karma says that if you do good things, good things will come upon you, and vice versa.  I believe it is very important to be kind and follow the “golden rule” and do unto others what I hope others would do for me.