HOW is my brother to lay aside his anger against me?
Bring him to me, and I will tell him; but I have nothing to say to you about his anger.
EPICTETUS. DISCOURSES. Book i. §15. ¶1.
AFTER this, know likewise, that you are a brother; and that to this character it belongs, to make concessions; to be easily persuaded: to use gentle language; never to claim for yourself any of the things dependent on choice, but cheerfully to give these, that you may have the larger share of what is dependent on it. For consider what it is, instead of a lettuce, for instance, or a chair, to procure for yourself a good temper? How great an advantage gained!
EPICTETUS. DISCOURSES. Book ii. §10. ¶3.
If your brother has anger against you then it has nothing to do with you to help him get over it. He is responsible for his own reactions to what you do. You cannot make anyone feel anything.ReplyDelete
Take a look at the big picture. It is better give smaller things and gain bigger virtues, etc.
When we are focused outwardly on the behaviour of others towards us, we forget the we too are behaving irrationaly in our reactions to them. We are to take the logs out of our own eyes (before removing the speck in theirs) and behave as we ought. Then those things which we seek in our relationships may come to us.ReplyDelete
Remember that we are all connected to each other, like brothers and sisters. Make concessions, be easily persuaded, and use gentle language. Don't try to control each other, or claim for yourself choices that belong to others. In that way you will have the larger share of what is in your control. In that way you will have more opportunity to act virtuously in all things. - Inspired by Epictetus.ReplyDelete
The way how others behave is not directly in our control. Each time someone else says or does something is a gift, an opportunity for us to observe that the essence of good is that we are totally free to choose our own attitude. Peace of Earth is ours whenever we embrace with understanding and sympathy all other creatures. But peace on Earth is quite another thing, comparable perhaps to the human body whose well-being depends on the harmonious cohabitation of its ever antagonistic constituents.ReplyDelete
We might indeed say that the body is the pacification of its cells and that man is the pacification of all living beings on Earth, in the same way that Nature is the pacification of the universe...