Echoes through time: an untroubled retreat

Men seek for seclusion in the wilderness, by the seashore, or in the mountains – a dream you have cherished only too fondly yourself. But such fancies are wholly unworthy of a philosopher, since at any moment you can choose to retire within yourself. Nowhere can man find a quieter or more untroubled retreat than in his own soul; above all, he who possesses resources in himself, which he need only contemplate to secure immediate ease of mind – the ease that is but another word for a well-ordered spirit. Avail yourself often, then, of this retirement, and so continually renew yourself.

Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (4.3)

Photo by Mark Koch on Unsplash

Eating my tsundoku

How’s your tsundoku? In our present time of limited distraction, I’m hoping to eat my way through mine.

For tsundoku is the Japanese word for books piling up, unread.

Learned readers will of course appreciate that this is a positive thing.

It’s another of those valuable concepts ( Shinrin-yoku, or forest bathing, wabi-sabi) that the Japanese have a word for.

More here (Open Culture), here (Wikipedia) and here (BBC).

Part of my personal tsundoku. Currently, Thomas Cromwell has me in thrall.

Main image, photo by Ed Robertson on Unsplash

Echoes through time: Give your heart to your trade

Give your heart to the trade you have learnt, and draw refreshment from it. Let the rest of your days be spent as one who has wholeheartedly committed his all to the gods, and is thenceforth no man’s master or slave.

Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (4.31)