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Rice is a staple food for people in a large part of the world and for a large part of history. Its cultivation, use, and character has entered the proverbs of many languages.


  • The vehicle of actions begin to ripen into fruit when the afflictions exist; not when the afflictions have been rooted out. As the rice in the paddy has the power to grow only so long as the chaff remains attached thereto and their seed power is not burnt up, not when the chaff has been removed, so also does the vehicle of actions grow into ripeness, when the afflictions are attached to it, and when is seed-power not has not been burnt up by intellection; not when the afflictions have been removed.
    • Veda Vyasa, The Yoga Darsana Of Patanjali With The Sankhya Pravacana Commentary Of Vyasa, p. 110.


  • As the rice plants mature, their heads bow low with fruit.
    • Japanese proverb. This conveys the teaching that with age, maturity, and sometimes high social position, comes the duty of humility. [1].
  • Deyyange haal kawila
    • Translation: Having eaten God's rice
    • Sri Lankan saying used to explain a crazy person or his actions in general with humour. The reasoning behind this is that when the rice harvest is collected, a small fraction of the best part is dedicated to the gods and that is sacred - if a person eats that, they will be afflicted with curses and lose mental stability/act crazy.
  • Annokao bin biao
    • Literally "Grains of rice"
    • Hmong saying, a metaphor for great effort or exertion.
  • One grain of rice equals one bead of sweat
    • Philippines and Malaysian expression is meant to encourage appreciation of the high level of labour involved in the production of the rice and of food in general and to discourage wasting it.
  • Arroz con mango
    • Literally "Rice with mango"
    • Costa Rican expression that it's used to denote an absurd or nonsensical situation. This is because, in Costa Rican cuisine, rice, being a main dish, and mango, being a sweet fruit (and often used as a dessert), are never supposed to mix or even mingle in any kind of dish.
  • Estás como el arroz blanco
    • You are like white rice.
    • Puerto Rico expression. White rice is most popular way of cooking rice in Puerto Rico, and the saying suggests that one is popular and highly sought.
  • Like the life of rice, when full bends down; when empty, stands up.
    • Indonesian saying. This refers to empty-headed people who tend to talk a lot more compare to full-headed people.

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