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Epictetus Quotes


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No man is free who is not master of himself.
[Freedom]
 

Not every difficult and dangerous thing is suitable for training, but only that which is conducive to success in achieving the object of our effort.
 

Nothing great is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig. I answer you that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen.
 

Nothing is in reality either pleasant or unpleasant by nature; but all things become so through habit
 

Of pleasures, those which occur most rarely give the most delight.
 

On the occasion of every accident that befalls you, remember to turn to yourself and inquire what power you have for turning it to use
[Events]
 

One that desires to excel should endeavor in those things that are in themselves most excellent.
[Excellence]
 

Only the educated are free.
 

People are not disturbed by things, but by the view they take of them.
 

Practice yourself, for heaven's sake in little things, and then proceed to greater.
[Practice]
 

Preach not to others what they should eat, but eat as becomes you, and be silent.
 

Remember you are but an actor in a drama of such sort as the author chooses. - If it be his pleasure that you should act a poor man, see that you act it well; or a cripple, or a ruler, or a private citizen. For this is your business, to act well the given part; but to choose it belongs to another.
[Resignation]
 

Ruin and recovery are both from within.
[Self Reliance]
 

Seek not good from without: seek it from within yourselves, or you will never find it
 

Seek not that the things which happen should happen as you wish; but wish the things which happen to be as they are, and you will have a tranquil flow of life
 

Shall I show you the sinews of a philosopher? "What sinews are those?" - A will undisappointed; evils avoided; powers daily exercised, careful resolutions; unerring decisions.
 

Silence is safer than speech.
 

So when the crisis is upon you, remember that God, like a trainer of wrestlers, has matched you with a tough and stalwart antagonist... that you may prove a victor at the Great Games.
[Courage]
 

So you wish to conquer in the Olympic games, my friend? And I too, by the Gods, and a fine thing it would be! But first mark the conditions and the consequences, and then set to work. You will have to put yourself under discipline; to eat by rule, to avoid cakes and sweetmeats; to take exercise at the appointed hour whether you like it or no, in cold and heat; to abstain from cold drinks and from wine at your will; in a word, to give yourself over to the trainer as to a physician. Then in the conflict itself you are likely enough to dislocate your wrist or twist your ankle, to swallow a great deal of dust, or to be severely thrashed, and, after all these things, to be defeated.
 

Tell me where I can escape death: discover for me the country, show me the men to whom I must go, whom death does not visit. Discover to me a charm against death. If I have not one, what do you wish me to do? I cannot escape from death, but shall I die lamenting and trembling? . . . Therefore if I am able to change externals according to my wish, I change them: but if I cannot, I am ready to tear the eyes out of him who hinders me.
 


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