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This proverb comes from my native language (Georgian). It behaves like a warning, when it is used in reference to a person. It can be used, when you are giving a piece of advice to somebody, thus fulfilling your duty and obligation as a human being. So, from that moment forth, whether the other side will take your suggestions or recommendations into consideration, it is up to them to decide. You won’t have to deal with consequences of their decisions anymore, since you warned them that something might go wrong. Is there an idiom or proverb in English, similar to the above-mentioned one in meaning?

  • Close to Is there an English equivalent for the expression 'playing the flute to a buffalo'?. 'Casting pearls before swine', .whistling in the wind', 'talking to a brick wall' are suggested there. But these assume a negative response. – Edwin Ashworth May 9 '18 at 19:15
  • @EdwinAshworth " Reading scripture in front of a donkey " , " the gospel was being read in front of (above the head of) a wolf but he was howling - let me go, the sheep are fleeing! ", etc. All these idioms have the similar meaning. We use these ones when we want to emphasize that talking to a person is a futile endeavor. As for my headline question. It doesn`t imply that, talking to person is useless, it points out a fact that, a piece of advice given to somebody by you, may be disregarded or rejected, despite of its usefulness. – Beqa May 9 '18 at 19:44
  • Hence I haven't close-voted. But I did want to pre-empt repeat and near-but-not-near-enough answers. – Edwin Ashworth May 9 '18 at 20:05
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    There's nothing wrong with saying as stated. It's not idiomatic in English, but the figurative meaning is obvious. – Hot Licks May 9 '18 at 20:11
  • @HotLicks - I didn’t get the intended meaning because to me, dawn breaking is completely outside the control of everybody who might hear the rooster. It doesn’t seem to me to be a warning to “heed my advice or beware” instead it’s more like a reminder saying, “I’ll do what you’ve asked, but remember, I have no influence on whether it will do any good or not.” – Jim May 9 '18 at 21:03
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"You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink." is frequently used in this context. You are showing the person the thing they need, but you can't make them take or use it, be it wisdom, or something else.

  • There's also the famous saying of (I think it was) Dorothy Parker: "You can lead a horticulture, but you can't make her think." – tautophile May 9 '18 at 23:56
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I’ve done my part.

to do one’s part.
to do what one is responsible for doing or is able to do
I've done my part, and now it's time for him to do his.

Please do your part by donating what you can to the organization. - M-W

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