Everything is but what your opinion makes it; and that opinion lies within yourself. Renounce it when you will, and at once you have rounded the foreland and all is calm; a tranquil sea, a tideless haven.
Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (12.22)
Photo by Raimond Klavins on Unsplash
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)
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A short and fascinating read from cognitive psychotherapist, author and Stoic Donald Robertson.
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.
Read the rest, here.
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Cultural Offering’s Kurt Harden set me on an adventure in pursuit of bread and circuses, via this site, AmericanDigest.org.
The original phrase, panem et circenses, was coined by Roman poet, Juvenal (Decimus Junius Juvenalis, 1st – 2nd Century CE) in his Satire 10:
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!
A man does not sin by commission alone, but often by omission.
Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (9.5)
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Accept modestly; surrender gracefully.
Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (8.33)
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Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present.
Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (7.8)
Photo by Johannes Plenio on Unsplash
You cannot hope to be a scholar. But what you can do is to curb arrogance; what you can do is to rise above pleasures and pains; you can be superior to the lure of popularity; you can keep your temper with the foolish and ungrateful, yes, even care for them.
Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (8.8)
Photo by Gary Ellis on Unsplash
Donald Robertson, author of How to Think Like a Roman Emperor (and many other books), posts a list of forthcoming Stoicism events.
The first is the Marcus Aurelius Anniversary conference, in honour of Marcus’ 1,900th birthday.
The events are virtual, which removes another excuse for not attending. I also see that recording will be available later for donating attendees.
More information, here.
It was common to refer to philosophy itself as a medicine or therapy (therapeia) for the psyche, the soul or mind.
Here’s an interesting article from Donald Robertson (cognitive psychotherapist and author of How to Think Like a Roman Emperor) on Marcus Aurelius, Stoicism and the roots of cognitive behavioural therapy: Marcus Aurelius in Therapy.
Continue reading “Stoicism and psychotherapy – @DonJRobertson”