SOCRATES very properly used to call these things masks: for, as masks appear shocking and formidable to children, from their inexperience, we are affected in like manner, with regard to things, for no other reason than as children are with regard to masks. For what is a child? Ignorance. What is a child? Want of learning; for, so far as the knowledge of children extends, they are not inferior to us. What is death? A mask. Turn it, and be convinced. See, it does not bite. This little body and spirit must be separated (as they formerly were) either now, or hereafter: why, then, are you displeased if it is now? For if not now, if will be hereafter.
EPICTETUS. DISCOURSES. Book ii. §1. ¶3.