THAT meekness is a thing unconquerable, if it be true and natural, and not affected, or hypocritical. For how shall even the most fierce and malicious that thou shalt conceive, be able to hold on against thee, if thou shalt still continue meek and loving unto him; and that even at that time, when he is about to do thee wrong, thou shalt be well disposed, and in good temper, with all meekness to teach him, and to instruct him better? As for example; My son, we were not born for this, to hurt and annoy one another; It will be thy hurt not mine, my son; and so to show him forcibly and fully, that it is so in very deed: and that neither Bees do it to one another, nor any other creatures that are naturally sociable. But this thou must do, not scoffingly, not by way of exprobration, but tenderly without any harshness of words. Neither must thou do it by way of exercise, or ostentation, that they that are by and hear thee, may admire thee: but so always that nobody be privy to it, but himself alone: yea, though there be more present at the same time.
MARCUS AURELIUS. MEDITATIONS. Book ix. 16.
Community and a sense of social responsibility is often lacking in humanity. I think we often have removed ourselves so far from Nature that we cease to realize that we have a role to fulfill within Nature's design. When we act without virtue we deny our part within this design. When we allow virtue to be the guiding light in our life we begin to fit within Nature's design again. We are in sync and more at peace with ourselves and the world around us. Creatures who are troubled or in pain lash out irrationally at the ones closest to them. This is the plight of the world and of humanity without virtue as their guiding principle.ReplyDelete
Strive first for understanding, then if there can be no understanding work for accommodation, but if there can be no accommodation, gird yourself up for defense.ReplyDelete
My part is to be simple. My part is to be serene.ReplyDelete
Not, at all, an easy task but we must endeavor to satisfy that nature of which we are a part.
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about your despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting --
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
WILD GEESE, by Mary Oliver