All Fake Buddha Quotes

Listed alphabetically. Fake Quotes are first, followed by “Fake Buddha Stories,” “Fakeish Quotes” and then “Other Posts,” which don’t deal with individual quotes. Quotes I’ve been asked about that are verified can be found on another page, and we have a sister site, Real Buddha Quotes, where you’ll find other genuine quotations from the Buddhist scriptures.

Fake Quotes

Mistranslations and mis-attributions.

Fake Buddha Stories

Things too complex to be treated as quotes — made-up stories usually involving extensive dialogue.

Fakeish Quotes

Often these are paraphrases or condensations. There’s nothing particularly wrong with most of these, but they’re included for the sake of completeness.

Other Posts

Pieces (not all of them by myself) on the topic of Fake Buddha Quotes, or fake quotes generally.

Genuine Quotes

Try reading some of the original scriptures, either on Access to Insight‘s wonderful site, or in book form. There are also a few genuine quotes I’ve been asked about that are discussed on this site.

Or you can visit our sister site, Real Buddha Quotes, to see a small selection of quotations, some of them in graphic form.


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9 thoughts on “All Fake Buddha Quotes”

  1. Here is another one which I bet is not by the Buddha popping up =the teaching is simple. do what is right and be pure.
    Also, if you want to recommend my book some people find it useful – The Buddhas Teachings: Seeing Without Illusion

    1. I’ve only been able to find that quote on one site, Rodger. It was a massage and reflexology website. Where else have you seen it?

    1. That’s not so recent, Chris! It’s a quote from the Mahayana “Diamond Sutra,” which could be almost 2,000 years old. It has resonances with the Pali Phena Sutta, which compares the skandhas to a drop of water, a mirage, a magician’s display, etc.

  2. Hello 🙂
    I would like to know if the following quote is actually a quote from the Buddha. I’ve seen it many times in social media.
    “Happiness or sorrow whatever befalls you walk on untouched unattached meaning”

    Thank you,
    Kind regards,

    1. Hi, Doni.

      That’s a new one to me. You’d have to add some punctuation for that even to make sense: “Happiness or sorrow — whatever befalls you, walk on, untouched, unattached.” (For some reason you’ve added the word “meaning” to the end, but it’s not part of the quote.)

      This is fake. It’s from Byrom’s “fake” translation of the Dhammapada. In other words, it’s meant to be a translation, but Byrom’s words bear little or no relation to the original. The verse in question is verse 83 of the Dhammapada, which in Buddharakkhita’s version is,

      The good renounce (attachment for) everything. The virtuous do not prattle with a yearning for pleasures. The wise show no elation or depression when touched by happiness or sorrow.

      Thanissaro’s version is:

      Everywhere, truly,
      those of integrity
      stand apart.
      They, the good,
      don’t chatter in hopes
      of favor or gains.
      When touched
      now by pleasure,
      now pain,
      the wise give no sign
      of high
      or low.

      You can see that those two translations are very similar in meaning (with the exception of “stand apart” and “renounce everything,” where some interpretation of the original is taking place. And you can see that Byrom’s rendering, which in full is:

      Want nothing.
      Where there is desire,
      Say nothing.
      Happiness or sorrow —
      Whatever befalls you,
      Walk on, untouched, unattached

      Is pretty much unrelated. That’s because Byrom basically just made up pretty words as he went along.

      I guess I’m going to have to write a blog post for this one! Thanks for bringing it to my attention!

      1. Thank you so much Bodhipaksa,
        Apologies for the bad punctuation, I don’t know how I accidentally added a new word!
        Thank you, that totally makes sense!
        Appreciate your assistance,

        1. I guess you copied the text from a Google search autocomplete, where the word “meaning” is often added after a quote (obviously as a result of many people wondering what the meaning of the quote is), and punctuation is missing.

  3. In reference to the first contribution by Rodger Ricketts:

    “To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to purify one’s mind—this is the teaching of the Buddhas” (Dhammapada 183).

    It is not the same as “____the teaching is simple. do what is right and be pure”, but it is very close.

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