Tag: Marcus Aurelius

Echoes through time: the Gulph of Time

All Compositions of Matter fly off apace to the common stock and Receptacle: Spirits are quickly swallow’d up in the Soul of the Universe, and so is Memory and Fame in the Gulph of Time.

Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (7.10)

The above comes from this 1726 translation of Meditations…

The London Library, Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

The “Soul of the Universe” and the “Gulph of Time” are maybe more evocative than the more recent version from Gregory Hays:

All substance is soon absorbed into nature, all that animates it soon restored to the logos, all trace of them both soon covered over by time.

Ryan Holiday on Stoicism, Stoicon 2016

Ryan Holiday, author of The Obstacle is the Way and founder of The Daily Stoic, talks about his personal introduction to Stoicism.

Drawing on his favourite verses from Meditations, he shows the commonsense, its real-world application of Stoicism. It’s not for “turtle-necked professors”, it’s for the man in the street.

If you’re curious, this is a great place to start…

Now thinking like a Roman emperor – @DonJRobertson

Highly recommended!

This week, I finished Donald Robertson’s new book How To Think Like a Roman Emperor. And, what a remarkable book it is.

It succeeds in being a practical introduction to Stoicism whilst combining biography, history, psychotherapy and philosophy. Each chapter uses a period in Marcus’s life to illustrate an issue, for example, conquering desire or relinquishing fear. It describes Marcus’s situation, then demonstrates Stoic exercises that deal with the topic in question.

Continue reading “Now thinking like a Roman emperor – @DonJRobertson”

Echoes through time: to look things in the face

The first rule is, to keep an untroubled spirit; for all things must bow to Nature’s law, and soon enough you must vanish into nothingness, like Hadrian and Augustus.

The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are, remembering that it is your duty to be a good man. Do without flinching what man’s nature demands; say what seems to you most just – though with courtesy, modesty and sincerity.

Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (8.5)

Image: Andrew Munro: young Marcus Aurelius, bust from Temple of Flora, Stourhead Gardens, Wiltshire

Echoes through time: without frenzy, sloth or pretence

Perfection of character: to live your last day, every day, without frenzy, or sloth, or pretence.

Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (7.59)

Note, unusually, I’ve taken the above from the Gregory Hays translation. My more usual Maxwell Staniforth translation has…

To live each day as though one’s last, never flustered, never apathetic, never attitudinising – here is the perfection of character.