Quote of the Fortnight: Marcus Aurelius’ “Meditations”

Marcus Aurelius bronze statue, from Musei Capitolini, (PD-USA)

The ‘Quote of the Fortnight’ returns, with this passage from Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations. Emperor of Rome from 161 A.D. to 180 A.D., Aurelius wrote this self-help book on the battlefield along the German front. Characteristic of his stoic philosophy, Aurelius’ work still offers useful advice today, remarking on the importance to live in the now and not the past.

II.4. “Remember how long you have been putting off these things, and how often you have received an opportunity from the gods, and yet you do not use it. You must now at last perceive of what universe your existence flows, and that a limit of time is fixed for you, which if you do not use for clearing away the clouds from your mind, it will go and you will go, and it will never return.”

 

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