In the final decade of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius’ life he wrote a series of personal philosophies intended for himself; these would later be published as Meditations. Some are quotes, most are prescriptions for self-improvement. Aurelius was a student of stoic philosophy. Stoicism deals with emotional intelligence, mind over matter, being tied to nature, and exercising philosophy through actions over words.
Meditations is repetitive of it’s central themes. Considering that this was essentially his notebook, he was most likely engaging in behavior modification through written affirmations.
Here are some my favorite quotes from the book.
1.“Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.”
2.“You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.”
3.“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.”
4.“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.
5.“Accept the things to which fate binds you, and love the people with whom fate brings you .“The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury.” together,but do so with all your heart.”
6.“If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself, but to your estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment.”
7.“The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury.”
8.“Waste no more time arguing about what a good man should be. Be one.”
9.“If someone is able to show me that what I think or do is not right, I will happily change, for I seek the truth, by which no one was ever truly harmed. It is the person who continues in his self-deception and ignorance who is harmed.”
10.“I have often wondered how it is that every man loves himself more than all the rest of men, but yet sets less value on his own opinion of himself than on the opinion of others.”