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From Vol. 3, Issue 1, January 2021

Stoic Thoughts for Every Day of the Month


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“What is in accordance with nature?” “To be free, as noble and selfrespecting.” [Epictetus D3.7]

Only the present matters.Things that lie in the past or the future are indifferent. [Marcus Aurelius, M6.32]

Why don’t you look for good things you can feel and use, instead of looking for something just for show? [Seneca, H2]

Just as we train ourselves to answer obscure, nit-picking questions, so should we train to deal with everyday impressions because they implicitly question us. [Epictetus D3.8]

It is natural for human beings to feel stress, if they are doing the work of a human being. How can it be a bad thing if it is in accordance with nature? [Marcus Aurelius, M6.33]

The ‘good things’ that people look at in awe, gather in groups to see, which one points to another with speechless wonder and admiration are outwardly brilliant. But they bring misery to those who have them. [Seneca, H2]

When your judgwments are bad, the results will be bad. [Epictetus D3.9]

Have you noticed how professionals accommodate the demands of their unskilled employer up to a point, and yet stand by the rules of their profession and refuse to bend them? [Marcus Aurelius, M6.35]

Let us look for some blessing – a blessing that does not look just outwardly good, but is good through and through, beautiful even in parts not seen easily. Let’s find this. It is not too far from us. [Seneca, H2]

Do you think that you are right and he is not? Why? Because you think so. But so does he. And so do crazy people.This is a bad criterion to go by. [Epictetus D3.9]

Even the lion’s open jaws, the deadly poison, the bramble bush, and the quagmire are all by-products of something noble and beautiful. They are not alien to what you revere. [Marcus Aurelius, M6.36]

True wisdom consists in not moving away from nature but in following it and behaving according to the laws and models of nature. [Seneca, H3]

“What do I need, then?” “Things you don’t have now: stability, a mind in accord with nature, and freedom from tension. [Epictetus D3.9]

If you have seen the present, you have seen everything since the beginning of time until the end of the world. All things are one kind. All things are one form. [Marcus Aurelius, M6.37]

The highest good is a mind that despises the accidents of fortune and takes pleasure in virtue. [Seneca, H4]

To you, all you have seems small.To me, all I have seems important. [Epictetus D3.9]

Think of the bond that unites everything in the universe.They are all dependent on one another. All are interconnected and in sympathy with one another. [Marcus Aurelius, M38]

The undefeated strength of mind knows the world. When it contacts any one, it is gentle in its dealings, showing great courtesy and consideration to them. [Seneca, H3]

We should have our judgments ready and available to us when we need them: at lunch, our judgments about lunch; at the bath, our judgments about a bath; in bed, our judgments about a bed. [Epictetus D3.10]

Adapt yourself to the environment assigned to you. Love your fellow human beings with whom your destiny is bound. [Marcus Aurelius, M6.39]

Happy people recognize good and bad only as it relates to minds. [Seneca, H3]

What occasion is there for fear? What occasion for anger, about things that are not our own and are of no value? What occasion is left to be fearful, then? [Epictetus D3.10]

If you limit your idea of good and bad to only your actions, you will neither blame the gods nor treat others as your enemies. [Marcus Aurelius, M6.41]

On the day a person becomes proof against pleasure, he also becomes proof against pain. [Seneca, H3]

We should not train ourselves using unnatural or strange practices. Otherwise, those of us who call ourselves philosophers will be no better than showmen. [Epictetus D3.12]

All of us are working together towards the same goal. Some do so consciously with understanding and others without even knowing it. [Marcus Aurelius, M6.42]

Happy is a person who uses reason, and he neither hopes nor fears. [Seneca, H3]

Not everything difficult or dangerous is suitable for training, but only that which helps us achieve what we set out to achieve. [Epictetus D3.612]

Does the sun try to do the rain’s work? … How about the stars? Aren’t they all different and yet work together towards the same goal? [Marcus Aurelius, M6.43]

You cannot be considered happy if you are not influenced by what is true.Therefore, a happy life is stable, and it is based on true and dependable judgment. [Seneca, H3]

Since habit is a powerful influence … we must set a contrary habit to set this habit … we must set our training as a counteracting force. [Epictetus D3.12]

Note: D: Discourses; M: Meditations; H: On Happiness

Dr. Chuck Chakrapani Editor-in-Chief