Friday, March 26, 2021
Is There Anything Terrible Here?
Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
9.21 (tr. C.R. Haines):
A cessation of activity, a quiescence from impulse and opinion and, as it were, their death, is no evil. Turn now to consider the stages of thy life—childhood, boyhood, manhood, old age—each step in the ladder of change a death. Is there anything terrible here? Pass on now to thy life under thy grandfather, then under thy mother, then under thy father, and finding there many other alterations, changes, and cessations, ask thyself: Is there anything terrible here? No, nor any in the ending and quiescence and change of the whole of life.
ἐνεργείας ἀπόληξις, ὁρμῆς, ὑπολήψεως παῦλα καὶ οἷον θάνατος, οὐδὲν κακόν. μέτιθι νῦν ἐπὶ ἡλικίαν, οἷον τὴν παιδικήν, τὴν τοῦ μειρακίου, τὴν νεότητα, τὸ γῆρας· καὶ γὰρ τούτων πᾶσα μεταβολὴ θάνατος. μήτι δεινόν; μέτιθι νῦν ἐπὶ βίον τὸν ὑπὸ τῷ πάππῳ, εἶτα τὸν ὑπὸ τῇ μητρί, εἶτα τὸν ὑπὸ τῷ πατρί· καὶ ἄλλας
δὲ πολλὰς διαφορὰς καὶ μεταβολὰς καὶ ἀπολήξεις εὑρίσκων, ἐπερώτα σεαυτόν· μήτι δεινόν; οὕτως τοίνυν οὐδὲ ἡ τοῦ ὅλου βίου λῆξις καὶ παῦλα καὶ μεταβολή.