Myoshin, of the Salt lake Buddhist Fellowship, was suspicious of this one: “There isn’t enough darkness in all the world to snuff out the light of one little candle.”
It’s also found as “There is not enough darkness in all the world to put out the light of even one small candle.”
It’s certainly not the Buddha, but unfortunately I haven’t yet found the source. I’m posting this here in case someone with better search skills than I can help track it down.
The second, “small candle,” version seems to be the oldest. It’s mostly attributed to “Robert Alden,” who is most likely the Robert L. Alden who wrote a series of commentaries on the Psalms. Alden was Professor of Old Testament at Denver Conservative Baptist Theological Seminary.
The “Westminster Collection of Christian Quotations” attributes it to Robert Aitken, but no other source does.
Unfortunately none of the citations I’ve seen point to an original source, and I can’t find the quote in the two books of his that appear in Google Books.
For what it’s worth, the oldest attribution I’ve found in a book is in Andy Zubko’s “Treasury Of Spiritual Wisdom,” which was originally published in 1996.
It also appears, quoted by a Chamber of Commerce leader, in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from January 12, 1995.
That’s a rather late attribution for the “Little House On the Prairie” Alden, who passed away in 1911, but would make more sense for Robert L. Alden, who was still writing in the 1970s.