September 1

STAY wretch, do not be hurried away. The combat is great, the achievement divine; for empire, for freedom, for prosperity, for tranquillity. Remember God. Invoke Him for your aid and protector, as sailors do Castor and Pollux in a storm. For what storm is greater than that which arises from violent appearances, contending to overset our reason? Indeed, what is the storm itself, but appearance? For, do but take away the fear of death, and let there be as many thunders and lightnings as you please, you will find that, in the ruling faculty, all is serenity and calm: but if you are once defeated, and say you will get the victory another time, and then the same thing over again; assure yourself, you will at last be reduced to so weak and wretched a condition, that you will not so much as know when you do amiss; but you will even begin to make defences for your behaviour, and thus verify the saying of Hesiod: "With constant ills the dilatory strive."

EPICTETUS. DISCOURSES. Book ii. §18, ¶5.


  1. If you become content and accustomed to mediocrity you will no longer strive for greater. Continually strive for the absolute best lest your fears cause you to wallow in mediocrity.

  2. Stand your ground, don't be swept away by the storms of life. Remember the prize is your mind and heart. That is where storms are formed, and where the battle is won or lost. Don't say to yourself, "I will give in just this once." Each time you give way to the winds and the waves, your foundations are weakened. Each time you stand firm, you strengthen your base to withstand the next onslought. - Inspired by Epictetus