Seven obstacles to be mindful of, from Nicholas Bate:
(1) Worrying about what other people might think
(2) The distraction of trivia and melodrama
(5) Not having pen nor paper at all times
(6) Believing things should be fair
Those odd things that you might spend a chunk of time writing and then you’d mail them and not expect an answer that afternoon. It might be a week or so before you’d seriously expect a reply. And when you received a letter, you might study the letterhead and the quality of the paper and, of course, the person’s signature.
To Nature, whence all things come and whither all return, the cry of the humble and well-instructed heart is, ‘Give as thou wilt, take back as thou wilt;’ yet uttered with no heroics, but in pure obedience and goodwill.
Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (10.14)
Journaling for self-improvement is nothing new. Daily reflection as moral self-examination goes all the back to ancient Greece and Rome. It was first described in a poem called The Golden Verses of Pythagoras, based on the doctrines of the famous sixth century BCE philosopher. Later, journaling became a key part of Stoicism.
The famous Stoic thinker Seneca wrote…
We know we ought to. Here’s the reason and inspiration.
Political language – and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists – is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.”
George Orwell (1903 – 1950), Politics and the English Language
Continue reading “Bread and Circuses”
And what does the mob of Remus say? It follows fortune, as it always does, and rails against the condemned. That same rabble, if Nortia had smiled upon the Etruscan, if the aged Emperor had been struck down unawares, would in that very hour have conferred upon Sejanus the title of Augustus. Now that no one buys our votes, the public has long since cast off its cares; the people that once bestowed commands, consulships, legions and all else, now meddles no more and longs eagerly for just two things—Bread and Circuses!