SLRP: XXVIII. On Travel As A Cure For Discontent



“You need a change of soul rather than a change of climate… your faults will follow you whithersoever you travel. “

Oh, how true this is.  I’ve traveled happily in the past, but most of the time I’ve found that my own issues cloud the trip.  I once spent 10 days on a small island in the Adiratic, a goodly portion of it sitting inside, reading.  Probably missed out on the better parts of the trip, as most would judge it.

My first backpacking trip, I spent miserable and wet.  I couldn’t do much about the second, but the first was all me.

“The person you are matters more than the place to which you go…”

Which of course is the crux of the issue.  Today, the society is tied in knots over ‘what’ a person is, with very little care for who the person is.  We fall to the collectivist fallacy, where the arbitrary classification of peoples becomes the dominant factor:  not simply “the individual.”

“ ‘There were thirty tyrants surrounding Socrates, and yet they could not break his spirit’; but what does it matter how many masters a man has? ‘Slavery’ has no plural; and he who has scorned it is free, – no matter amid how large a mob of over-lords he stands. “

Ah, and the return to my changing understanding of freedom.  You letter hits home with me today, here in my exile.  In a strange land, far from kith and kin.  Under some pressure, but the way I handle it is up to me.  The person I am matter more than where I am or what I’m doing here.

It’s the key thing, and it’s up to me.  Thank you for the reminder.


Part of Michel Daw’s Reading Plan of Seneca’s Letters.

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