Friday

December 11

WHEREVER I go it will be well with me there, for it was well with me here, not on account of the place, but of the principles which I shall carry away with me, for no one can deprive me of these; on the contrary, they alone are my property, and cannot be taken away, and retaining them suffices me wherever I am or whatever I do. "But it is now time to die."—What is it that you call dying? Do not talk of the thing in a tragedy strain, but say, as the truth is, that it is time for a compound piece of matter to be resolved back into its original.

And where is the terror of this? What part of the world is going to be lost? What is going to happen new or prodigious? Is it for this that a tyrant is formidable? Is it on this account that the swords of his guards seem so large and sharp? Try these things upon others. For my part I have examined the whole. No one hath an authority over me. God hath made me free; I know His commands; after this no one can enslave me.

EPICTETUS. DISCOURSES. Book iv. §7. ¶3.

2 comments:

  1. This feels very Pauline in its sentiments. I feel this is an embodiment of everything that I found good in the early Xtian teachings of the Church. Constancy of character and steadfastness of nature need to be our constant companions. Only in this can we be "true to our natures" by being anchored on virtues and correct principles.

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  2. This morning's reading brought to mind an old hymn. While the remaining verses carry a much heavier religious theme, the first verse puts Epictetus thoughts to music, beautifully.

    It Is Well with My Soul
    Horatio G. Spafford, 1873

    When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
    When sorrows like sea billows roll;
    Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
    It is well, it is well, with my soul.

    Refrain:
    It is well, with my soul,
    It is well, it is well, with my soul.

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