Time is a river, the resistless flow of all created things. One thing no sooner comes in sight than it is hurried past and another is borne along, only to be swept away in its turn.
Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (4.43)
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.
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!
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)
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.