Talk:sow the wind, reap the whirlwind

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Definition and synonymsEdit

I agree with D. Polansky - the definition is simply incorrect. It is not EVERY decision comes back to haunt you but bad decisions (that's sowing (in) the wind) come back to haunt you. It's not damned if you do and damned if you don't, it's IF YOU SCREW UP, your decision will plague you.

Likewise some of the synonyms are ridiculous particularly "There ain't no such thing as a free lunch". That's appallingly off target.

   * there's no such thing as a free lunch.
         o also TANSTAAFL, TINSTAAFL (SIMPLY RIDICULOUS perversion of Heinlein's idea).
   * what goes around, comes around. (CLOSE BUT NO CIGAR)
   * get out what one puts in. (CLOSER - maybe close enough)
   * get what one pays for. (CLOSER - maybe close enough)
   * reap what one sows. (EXACTLY RIGHT)


I doubt that the current definition is correct, and that the synonyms fit. But I am a non-native speaker.

My understanding of this proverb is that who disturbs and makes angry other people can expect them to strike back.

By contrast, I understand "reap what one sows" as that he who is lazy has no results of his work to collect.

Admittedly, these are just guesses and speculations of mine. Someone knowledgable can hopefully correct the article or provide informed judgment.

--Daniel Polansky 10:59, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Our synonyms are usually only approximate. But I don't think that this proverb is necessarily about provoking people, living things, or spirits. It could be about any kind of "living dangerously" IMHO. Your nuanced reading of "reap what you sow" is accurate IMO and is not in precise correspondence with this entry, but probably within the current (undefined?) standard of synonymy at WT. DCDuring TALK 00:46, 26 February 2008 (UTC)
Last modified on 25 March 2010, at 17:31