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Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 2 (search)
stinguished: never claim any thing which belongs to others. A tribunal and a prison are each a place, one high and the other low; but the will can be maintained equal, if you choose to maintain it equal in each. And we shall then be imitators of Socrates, when we are able to write paeans in prison.Diogenes Laertius reports in his life of Socrates that he wrote in prison a Paean, and he gives the first line which contains an address to Apollo and Artemis. But in our present disposition, consider aeans in prison.Diogenes Laertius reports in his life of Socrates that he wrote in prison a Paean, and he gives the first line which contains an address to Apollo and Artemis. But in our present disposition, consider if we could endure in prison another person saying to us, Would you like me to read Paeans to you?—Why do you trouble me? do you not know the evils which hold me? Can I in such circumstances (listen to paeans)?—What circumstances?—I am going to die.— And will other men be im
Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 2 (search)
What is the nature (h( ou)si/a) of the GoodSchweighaeuser observes that the title of this chapter would more correctly be o( *teo\s e)n u(mi=n, God in man. There is no better chapter in the book. GOD is beneficial. But the Good also is beneficial.Socrates (Xenophon, Mem. iv. 6, 8) concludes 'that the useful is good to him to whom it is useful.' It is consistent then that where the nature of God is, there also the nature of the good should be. What then is the nature of God?I do not remember that Epictetus has attempted any other descrip- tion of the nature of God. He has done more wisely than some who have attempted to answer a question which cannot be answered. But see ii. 14, 11–13. Flesh? Certainly not. An estate in land? By no means. Fame? No. Is it intelligence, knowledge, right reason? Yes. Herein then simply seek the nature of the good; for I suppose that you do not seek it in a plant. No. Do you seek it in an irrational animal? No. If then you seek it in a rational animal, why
Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 2 (search)
elp others, a natural disposition to forbearance? The man then who allows himself to be damaged in these matters, can he be free from harm and uninjuredou(=tos h)=| a)blabh/s. See Schweig.'s note. What then? shall I not hurt him, who has hurt me?Socrates. We must by no means then do an act of injustice. Crito. Certainly not. Socrates. Nor yet when you are wronged must you do wrong in return, as most people think, since you must in no way do an unjust act. Plato, Crito, c. 10. In the first placeSocrates. Nor yet when you are wronged must you do wrong in return, as most people think, since you must in no way do an unjust act. Plato, Crito, c. 10. In the first place consider what hurt (bla/bh) is, and remember what you have heard from the philosophers. For if the good consists in the will (purpose, intention, proaire/sei), and the evil also in the will,See the beginning of ii. 16. see if what you say is not this: What then, since that man has hurt himself by doing an unjust act to me, shall I not hurt myself by doing some unjust act to him? Why do we not imagine to ourselves (mentally think of) something of this kind? But where there is any detriment to th
Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 2 (search)
the truth, and you will see that he fellows. But so long as you do not show him the truth, do not ridicule him, but rather feel your own incapacity. How then did Socrates act? He used to compel his adversary in disputation to bear testimony to him, and he wanted no other witness.This is what is said in the Gorgias of Plato, p. 472plains to be the name as prolh/yeis. Acad. Pr. ii. 10. so plain that every man saw the contradiction (if it existed) and withdrew from it (thus): Does the enviousSocrates' notion of envy is stated by Xenophon (Mem. iii. 9, 8), to be this: 'it is the pain or vexation which men have at the prosperity of their friends, and that such confuse themselves and confuse others; and finally abusing their adversaries and abused by them, they walk away. Now this was the first and chief peculiarity of Socrates, never to be irritated in argument, never to utter any thing abusive, any thing insulting, but to bear with abusive persons and to put an end to the quarrel. If
Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 2 (search)
esent this handle in your body, follow every man who is stronger than yourself. So, crates used to practise speaking, he who talked as he did to the tyrants,The Thirty tyrants of Athens, as they were named (Xenophon, Hellenica, ii.). The talk of Socrates with Critias and Charicles two of the Thirty is reported in Xenophon's Memorabilia (i. 2, 33). The defence of Socrates before those who tried him and his conversation in prison are reported in Plato's Apology, and in the Phaedon and Crito. DiogeSocrates before those who tried him and his conversation in prison are reported in Plato's Apology, and in the Phaedon and Crito. Diogenes was captured by some pirates and sold (iv. 1, 115). to the dicasts (judges), he who talked in his prison. Diogenes had practised speaking, he who spoke as he did to Alexander, to the pirates, to the person who bought him. These men were confident in the things which they practised.There is some corruption here. But do you walk off to your own affairs and never leave them: go and sit in a corner, and weave syllogisms, and propose them to another. There is not in you the man who can rule a st
Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 2 (search)
tain things becomes a carpenter; the pilot by learning certain things becomes a pilot. May it not then in philosophy also not be sufficient to wish to be wise and good, and that there is also a necessity to learn certain things? We inquire then what these things are. The philosophers say that we ought first to learn that there is a God and that he provides for all things; also that it is not possible to conceal from him our acts, or even our intentions and thoughts.See i. 14. 13, ii. 8. 14. Socrates (Xen. Mem. i. 1. 19) said the same. That man should make himself like the Gods is said also by Antoninus, x. 8.—See Plato, De Legg. i. 4. (Upton.) When God is said to provide for all things, this is what the Greeks called pro/noia, providence. (Epictetus, i. 16, iii. 17.) In the second of these passages there is a short answer to some objections made to Providence. Epictetus could only know or believe what God is by the observation of phaenomena; and he could only know what he supposed to b
Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 2 (search)
he conclusion is, 'if you cannot be cured of your (mental) disease, seek death which is better and depart from life.' This bears some resemblance to the precept in Matthew vi. 29 'And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out and cast it from thee,' etc. Have recourse to expiations, go a suppliant to the temples of the averting deities. It is even sufficient if you resort to the society of noble and just men, and compare yourself with them, whether you find one who is living or dead. Go to Socrates and see him lying down with Alcibiades, and mocking his beauty: consider what a victory he at last found that he had gained over himself; what an Olympian victory; in what number he stood from Hercules;Hercules is said to have established gymnastic contests and to have been the first victor. Those who gained the victory both in wrestling and in the pancratium were reckoned in the list of victors as coming in the second or third place after him, and so on. so that, by the Gods, one may just
Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 2 (search)
of it at the same time. For instance, if a man should deny that there is anything universally true, it is plain that he must make the contradictory negation, that nothing is universally true. What, wretch, do you not admit even this? For what else is this than to affirm that whatever is universally affirmed is false? Again if a man should come forward and say: Know that there is nothing that can be known,'Itaque Arcesilas negabat esse quidquam quod soiri posset, ne illud quidem ipsum, quod Socrates sibi reliquisset. Sic omnia latere censebat in occulto, neque ease quidquam quod oerni aut intelligi possit. Quibus de causis nihil oportere neque profiteri neque adfirmare quemquam neque adsensione adprobare.' Cicero, Academ. Post. 1. 12, Diog. Laert. ix. 90 of the Pyrrhonists. but all things are incapable of sure evidence; or if another say, Believe me and you will be the better for it, that a man ought not to believe any thing; or again, if another should say, Learn from me, man, that i
Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 2 (search)
one shall show this, a man will himself withdraw from that which he does; but so long as you do not show this, do not be surprised if a man persists in his practice; for having the appearance of doing right, he does what he does. For this reason Socrates also trusting to this power used to say, I am used to call no other witness of what I say, but I am always satisfied with him with whom I am discussing, and I ask him to give his opinion and call him as a witness, and though he is only one, he is sufficient in the place of all. For Socrates knew by what the rational soul is moved, just like a pair of scales, and then it must incline, whether it chooses or not.There is some deficiency in the text. Cicero (Acad. Prior. i. 12), but enim necesse est lancem in libra ponderibus impositis deprimi; sic snimum perspicuis cedere,' appears to supply the deficiency. Show the rational governing faculty a contradiction, and it will withdraw from it; but if you do not show it, rather blame yourself t
Epictetus, Discourses (ed. George Long), book 3 (search)
the inhabitants of the world to resort to him? and why are the words Know yourself written in front of the temple, though no person takes any notice of them? Did Socrates persuade all his hearers to take care of themselves? Not the thousandth part. But however, after he had been placed in this position by the deity, as he himself most particularly will I do this to you my fellow citizens, because you are more nearly related to me. Plato, Apology, i. 9, etc. and c. 17.—Are you so curious, Socrates, and such a busy—body? and how does it concern you how we act? and what is it that you say? Being of the same community and of the same kin, you neglect yourselfou will be beautiful. But up to the present time I dare not tell you that you are ugly, for I think that you are readier to hear anything than this. But see what Socrates says to the most beautiful and blooming of men Alcibiades: Try then to be beautiful. What does he say to him? Dress your hair and pluck the hairs from your legs?
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