Seneca the Younger - Wikipedia
Seneca the Younger (c. 4 BC – AD 65), fully Lucius Annaeus Seneca and also known simply as Seneca (/ ˈ s ɛ n ɪ k ə /), was a Roman Stoic philosopher, statesman, dramatist, and—in one work—satirist of the Silver Age of Latin literature.
From the forms of lesser power let us draw a parallel for great power. The man who, relying on reason, marches through mortal vicissitudes with the spirit of a god, has no vulnerable spot where he can receive an injury. Try now how mercy will work pardon lucius cinna.
The speeding of the race chariot and the sight of its revolving wheels will drive back lions to their cage, and elephants are terrified by the squealing of a pig. And he will openly kill those whom he wishes to have serve as examples of the wickedness that is slow to yield, not so much that they themselves may be destroyed as that they may deter ethers from destruction. But the other did not cease from trying to strike his bold heart with fear in reply to this he said, harness the chariot you offered the very things that you think affright me urge me on.
It does not matter, therefore, how many darts are hurled against him, since none can pierce him. As if stunned he maintained that attitude, unbecoming to a philosopher, of a man in the act of venting his passion, forgetful now of the slave since he had found another whom he was more anxious to punish. Yet in regard to certain pleasures they are less self-restrained than man.
Who, therefore, has less knowledge of the ways of nature than the man who would ascribe to her best and most finished work this cruel and deadly vice? Anger, as i have said, is bent on punishment, and that such a desire should find a harbour in mans most peaceful breast accords least of all with his nature. But as the discussion progresses, i shall show how the things that seem to be evils are not really so. For most of our indignation arises from our saying, i am not to blame, i have done nothing wrong.
Even though you seize it, it still will flee therefore you must vie with times swiftness in the speed of using it, and, as from a torrent that rushes by and will not always flow, you must drink quickly. But he wiped it off his face and said, to all who affirm that you have no cheek,a lentulus, ill swear that they are mistaken. For human life is founded on kindness and concord, and is bound into an alliance for common help, not by terror, but by mutual love.
If no sponges were to be found, he ordered the garments of the poor wretches to be torn up, and their mouths to be stuffed with the strips. You cannot speak but that all the nations of the earth hear your voice you cannot be angry without causing everything to tremble, because you cannot strike any one down without shaking all that is around him. Therefore that primary disturbance of the mind which is excited by the impression of injury is no more anger than the impression of injury is itself anger the active impulse consequent upon it, which has not only admitted the impression of injury but also approved it, is really anger - the tumult of a mind proceeding to revenge by choice and determination. Is it really such pleasure for a man to die in harness? Yet very many have the same feeling their desire for their labour lasts longer than their ability they fight against the weakness of the body, they judge old age to be a hardship on no other score than because it puts them aside. And so, my dearest paulinus, tear yourself away from the crowd, and, too much storm-tossed for the time you have lived, at length withdraw into a peaceful harbour.
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THE DIALOGUES OF LUCIUS ANNAEUS SENECA BOOK I TO LUCILIUS ON PROVIDENCE+. Why, though there is a Providence, some Misfortunes befall Good Men.
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And so they are deceived by imaginary blows and are pacified by the pretended tears of those who beg forgiveness, Gaius caesar.
It is possible for one to become a wrong-doer, although he may not have done a wrong, The same principle holds good of the virtues, but with the opposite result - that they ameliorate whatever comes in contact with them an invalid does not benefit so much from a suitable location or a more healthful climate as does the mind which lacks strength from association with a better company.
Children ventured much less often to incur the supreme sin so long as the crime lay outside the pale of the law. Nothing in the world is so sacred that it will not find some one to profane it, but holy things are none the less exalted, even if those do exist who strike at a greatness that is set far beyond them, and which they will never damage.
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If these milder measures are unavailing he opens a vein, and then, if the limbs by continuing to be attached to the body are doing it harm and spreading the disease, he lays violent hands on them. You learn to know a pilot in a storm, a soldier in the battle-line. Life has left some in the midst of their first struggles, before they could climb up to the height of their ambition some, when they have crawled up through a thousand indignities to the crowning dignity, have been possessed by the unhappy thought that they have but toiled for an inscription on a tomb some who have come to extreme old age, while they adjusted it to new hopes as if it were youth, have had it fail from sheer weakness in the midst of their great and shameless endeavours. We have now succeeded, novatus, in bringing composure to the mind it either does not feel anger, or is superior to it. This steals upon us even from the sight of plays upon the stage and from reading of happenings of long ago.
Therefore it is not strange that kings and princes and guardians of the public order, whatever different name they bear, are held more dear even than those bound to us by private ties for if men of sense put public above private, it follows that he too is dearer upon whom the whole state centres. She seeks out the bravest men to match with her some she passes by in disdain. I should like to believe that this is why the wound was not well-aimed and efficacious - it was not enough for the immortal gods to look but once on cato. See you that precipice? Down that is the way to liberty. There, when one of the white horses which regularly drew the royal chariot was swept away, the king became mightily stirred.
Why do you shout? Why do you rant? Why do you call for the whip in the midst of dinner, all because the slaves are talking, because there is not the silence of the desert in a room that holds a crowd big as a mass-meeting? You do not have ears only for the purpose of listening to melodious sounds, soft and sweetly drawn and all in harmony you should also lend ear to laughter and weeping, to soft words and bitter, to happiness and sorrow, to the voices of men and the roars and barking of animals. But when are they so? Only when anger gradually vanishes and departs of its own accord, not when it is at white heat then it is the more powerful of the two. There is nothing the busy man is less busied with than living there is nothing that is harder to learn. And yet i am aware that the other emotions as well are not easily concealed that lust and fear and boldness all show their marks and can be recognized beforehand. For he is the bond by which the commonwealth is united, the breath of life which these many thousands draw, who in their own strength would be only a burden to themselves and the prey of others if the great mind of the empire should be withdrawn. Thus the success of an insult depends upon the sensitiveness and the indignation of the victim. And so, when you see that men who are good and acceptable to the gods labour and sweat and have a difficult road to climb, that the wicked, on the other hand, make merry and abound in pleasures, reflect that our children please us by their modesty, but slave-boys by their forwardness that we hold in check the former by sterner discipline, while we encourage the latter to be bold. But no injury can be done without injustice therefore no injury can be done to the wise man. We may excuse also those who inquire into thiswho first induced the romans to go on board ship. It is easier to refrain than to retreat from a struggle.ARMY RESERVE OFFICERS' TRAINING CORPS (ROTC) TEAM SENECA Southwestern New York ROTC Battalion. St. Bonaventure University, Alfred State College, Alfred University, University of Pittsburgh at Bradford,
Lucius Annaeus Seneca: On the Shortness of LifeLucius Annaeus Seneca On the Shortness of Life translated by John W. Basore, Loeb Classical Library London: William Heinemann, 1932
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He had tortured them by every unhappy device in existence - by the cord, by knotted bones, by the rack, by fire, by his own countenance. Suppose in the end he deserves punishment then there is no reason why we should match his misdeeds. So a wild beast by struggling but tightens its noose so birds by trying in their alarm to get free from birdlime, smear all their plumage with it. Defeated, routed far and wide, and seeing its own destruction spread on every side, between two lines of the dead bodies of its comrades it trudged along. At the same time he remembers this, - that all others are so much his own inferiors that they would not presume to despise what is so far above them.
Even as conversation or reading or deep meditation on some subject beguiles the traveller, and he finds that he has reached the end of his journey before he was aware that he was approaching it, just so with this unceasing and most swift journey of life, which we make at the same pace whether waking or sleeping those who are engrossed become aware of it only at the end Buy now Seneca Essay
At times the tyrants own guards have risen up against them, and have practised upon their persons the treachery and disloyalty and brutality and all else that they themselves had taught them. That which finds pleasure in torture we may say is not cruelty, but savagery - we may even call it madness for there are various kinds of madness, and none is more unmistakable than that which reaches the point of murdering and mutilating men. After hippias had ordered them to be slain one by one, as they were named, he asked whether there was still any other. Pardon is the remission of a deserved punishment. And what, indeed, seems more unjust than that certain reprobates should prosper and become the pets of fortune - men for whom there could be found no fortune bad enough? But the good man will no more view their blessings with envy than he views their crimes with anger Seneca Essay Buy now
If ever you want to find out what a thing really is, entrust it to time you can see nothing clearly in the midst of the billows. Injuries from the more powerful must be borne, not merely with submission, but even with a cheerful countenance they will repeat the offence if they are convinced that they have succeeded once. And since certain remedies are to be employed against anger, others against sullenness, and the two faults are to be cured, not merely by different, but even by contrary, methods, we shall always attack the fault that has become the stronger. For cato it were as ignoble to beg death from any man as to beg life. In short, the maintenance of all the virtues is easy, but it is costly to cultivate the vices Buy Seneca Essay at a discount
Often one should not even listen to report, since under some circumstances it is better to be deceived than to be suspicious. In the very presence of the altars and the solemn rites of sacrifice, while you pray for life, learn well concerning death. Demochares, surnamed parrhesiastes on account of his bold and impudent tongue, came to him once in company with other envoys from the athenians. Many very great men, having laid aside all their encumbrances, having renounced riches, business, and pleasures, have made it their one aim up to the very end of life to know how to live yet the greater number of them have departed from life confessing that they did not yet knowstill less do those others know Buy Online Seneca Essay
I ask, in fine, is anger more powerful or weaker than reason? If it is more powerful, how will reason be able to set limitations upon it, since, ordinarily, it is only the less powerful thing that submits? If it is weaker, then reason without it is sufficient in itself for the accomplishment of our tasks, and requires no help from a thing less powerful. Nature has given to us an adequate equipment in reason we need no other implements. Shameful were it not to draw a lesson from the ways of the tiny creatures, since, as the mind of man has so much more power to do harm, it ought to show the greater self-control. Not without reason do cities and peoples show this accord in giving such protection and love to their kings, and in flinging themselves and all they have into the breach whenever the safety of their ruler craves it Buy Seneca Essay Online at a discount
Trampling under foot every scruple, it stains the hands with murder, it scatters abroad the limbs of children, it suffers no place to be free from crime, with no thought of glory, with no fear of disgrace, it is incurable when once, from anger, it has hardened into hate. The logic of the whole passage suffers from the uncertainty of the text. The man who engages in, many affairs is never so fortunate as to pass a day that does not beget from some person or some circumstance a vexation that fits the mind for anger. But from the measure of your own weakness you form your idea of an heroic spirit, and, having pictured how much you think that you can endure, you set the limit of the wise mans endurance a little farther on Seneca Essay For Sale
The boy will never be angry at some one being counted equal to himself, whom you have from the first treated as the equal of many. It will, therefore, be a mans duty to avoid all those who he knows will provoke his anger. And so i should like to lay hold upon someone from the company of older men and say i see that you have reached the farthest limit of human life, you are pressing hard upon your hundredth year, or are even beyond it come now, recall your life and make a reckoning. Who are more courageous than the germans? Who are bolder in a charge? Who have more love of the arms to which they are born and bred, which to the exclusion of all else become their only care? Who are more hardened to endurance of every kind, since they are, in large measure, provided with no protection for their bodies, with no shelter against the continual rigour of the climate? Yet these are they whom the spaniards and the gauls and men of asia and syria, uninured to war, cut down before they could even glimpse a roman legion, the victims of nothing else than anger For Sale Seneca Essay
Why should he not have been happy that many perceived his anger, yet no man felt it? But they would have felt it, had his friends not been granted the same right to criticize him which he himself claimed over them. With me the sword is hidden, nay, is sheathed i am sparing to the utmost of even the meanest blood no man fails to find favour at my hands though be lack all else but the name of man. Let the countenance be unruffled, let the voice be very gentle, the step very slow gradually the inner man conforms itself to the outer. You say, perhaps, that man has already injured me, but i have not yet injured him. Therefore everything should be endured with fortitude, since things do not, as we suppose, simply happen - they all come Sale Seneca Essay
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