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Quote of the week – Marcus Aurelius

November 19, 2013

I have recently been reading Jules Evans Philosophy for Life and am finding it particularly insightful and helpful. It has led me to read more stoic philosophy such as that of Marcus Aurelius. This quote in particular has struck me recently and I wanted to share it:

This thou must always bear in mind, what is the nature of the whole, and what is my nature, and how this is related to that, and what kind of a part it is of what kind of a whole; and that there is no one who hinders thee from always doing and saying the things which are according to the nature of which thou art a part.

Marcus Aurelius The Meditations 2

I have not studied much Classical Philosophy and as such do not offer any substantial assessment of the quotation. Marcus Aurelius’ The Meditations were personal observations that he noted in order to improve his self awareness; achieved through questioning his actions and reactions. In addition to being a fantastic insight into Marcus Aurelius’ approach to stoicism and character the writings can be applied to help develop personal skills. Though I have only recently started reading The Meditations in any detail I have found that through considering sections such as the one outlined above I have started to break away from behaviours that have become habitual. If, like me, you have not studied much philosophy I would also recommend Evans’ book as it provides details of several different ancient philosophical approaches and how a person could use them in everyday life.

Bibliography

Marcus Aurelius The Meditations Translated by George Long The Internet Classics Archive http://classics.mit.edu/Antoninus/meditations.2.two.html [Accessed 18th November 2013]

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