IF, then, the things independent on choice are neither good nor evil; and all that do depend on choice are in our own power, and can neither be taken away from us, nor given to us, unless we please; what room is there left for solicitude? But we are solicitous about this paltry body or estate of ours, or about the determination of Caesar, and not at all about anything internal. Are we ever solicitous not to take up a false opinion? No, for this is in our own power. Or not to exert our pursuits contrary to nature? No, nor this neither. When, therefore, you see anyone pale with solicitude, as the physician pronounces from the complexion that such a patient is disordered in the spleen, another in the liver, so do you likewise say, this man is disordered in his desires and aversions, he cannot walk steady, he is in a fermentation. For nothing else changes the complexion or causes a trembling or sets the
EPICTETUS. DISCOURSES. Book ii. §13. ¶2.
Solicitude = concern or being anxiousReplyDelete
We are so anxious about external influences in our lives yet care nothing for educating our moral compass. We care more about the judgement of others than that we exercise correct judgement in matters. We want to appear as pleasing to our neighbour and yet we are crumbling from within with a poor foundation.
Let us seek first to educate ourselves and set up a firm moral foundation on which to build a life, rather than be anxious about things that we have no control over.