June 18

A MAN is carried to prison. What hath happened? He is carried to prison. That he is unhappy, is an addition that everyone makes of his own.—But Zeus doth not order these things right. Why so? Because he hath made you patient? Because he hath made you brave? Because he hath made them to be no evils? Because it is permitted you, while you suffer them, to be happy? Because he hath opened you the door, whenever they do not suit you? Go out, man, and do not complain.


BEING asked what common sense was, he answered : As that may be called a common ear which distinguishes only sounds, but that which distinguishes notes an artistic one ; so there are some things which men not totally perverted discern by their common natural powers ; and such a disposition is called common sense.



  1. We must not allow where we are to determine our behaviour. Whether in prison, in a palace or on a beach, our Self is the same. No matter what the circumstance we are the same person.

    We must strive to have our essence/core unchangeable and resolute. No matter what life throws at us we are the same person. We can be counted as one who will not allow the storms of life to knock them off course. We will be like a sailing ship that adjusts course constantly and safely reaches the harbour.

  2. That something has happened to you is merely a fact. That you are unhappy about it is an addition that you make on your own.

    We choose the meaning of the events that happen to us in many cases. Nothing is happening to us which has not happened to someone else before. How did they interpret it? A setback? A destruction? A non-event? A opportunity? A blessing? We own our present and our future, for they mean what we want them to mean.

  3. Humbled (again) by Epictetus's definition of common sense. How simple. How beautiful.

    "Life itself is but what you deem it".