Enchirdion 45 for urbanites.

Quote

“Does anyone bathe in a mighty little time? Don’t say that he does it ill, but in a mighty little time. Does anyone drink a great quantity of wine? Don’t say that he does ill, but that he drinks a great quantity. For, unless you perfectly understand the principle from which anyone acts, how should you know if he acts ill? Thus you will not run the hazard of assenting to any appearances but such as you fully comprehend.”

— Epictetus, Enchiridion 45.


“Does anyone signal for a turn in a mighty little time?  Don’t say the he does it badly, but just that he does it in a mighty little time.  Does anyone drive by weaving in and out of traffic?  Don’t say that he does it like an asshole, but that he drives by weaving in and out.  For unless you understand the principle from which anyone pilots a vehicle, how should you know if he does so badly?  Thus you will not run the hazard of assenting to any appearances but such as you fully comprehend.”

— Enchirdion 45 (with some artistic license)

One thought on “Enchirdion 45 for urbanites.

  1. Driving is probably my most common exercise. It’s an opportunity to practice staying calm over things I can’t control, and as pointed out, it’s also an opportunity to practice refraining from making judgements about *why* people do what they do. If someone cuts in front of me or weaves in and out of traffic, I try telling myself, “perhaps they are new to driving,” or “they might be in a rush to get to the hospital.” Maybe they are acting with virtue, maybe they aren’t. But what is that to me?

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