All my days I grew up among the sages,
And I have found nothing better for a person than silence;
And not the studying, but the doing is the main thing.
And all who speak too much bring on sin.
—Shimon ben Gamliel
Translation note (1:17) ‘For a person’ is literally ‘for a body.’ ‘The
studying’ here is the midrash, the study of Torah specifically; midrash also means the creative
interpretation of Torah texts. “Speak too much” is literally “increase words”.