Marcus Aurelius was easily one of the most fascinating minds that ever lived. He was a philosopher-king, and one of the most respected emperors in the ancient Roman Empire’s history. Marcus came from the political elite of Rome and was a highly intellectually gifted student who knew many languages and absorbed all the curriculum the ancient world had to offer concerning academia. However, out of all of Marcus Aurelius’ interests, none fascinated him more than the philosophy of Stoicism. Which was all about self-mastery, fate, self-restraint, and most of all, reason. When Marcus picked up the ancient book Discourses, which was written by a former slave and Stoic philosopher Epictetus, his life would forever afterward be consumed with Stoicism. So without further ado here are 20 quotes from the master of Stoicism, Marcus Aurelius:

1

When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive – to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.

2

The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts: therefore, guard accordingly, and take care that you entertain no notions unsuitable to virtue and reasonable nature.

3

Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.

4

Accept the things to which fate binds you, and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart.

5

You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.

6

Waste no more time arguing about what a good man should be. Be one.

7

Time is a sort of river of passing events, and strong is it’s current; no sooner is a thing brought to sight than it is swept by and another takes its place, and this too will be swept away.

8

The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.

9

Reject your sense of injury and the injury itself disappears.

10

Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future, too.

11

Each day provides its own gifts.

12

The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts.

13

Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future, too.

14

A noble man compares and estimates himself by an idea which is higher than himself; and a mean man, by one lower than himself. The one produces aspiration; the other ambition, which is the way in which a vulgar man aspires.

15

To understand the true quality of people, you must look into their minds, and examine their pursuits and aversions.

16

He who lives in harmony with himself lives in harmony with the universe.

17

How much time he saves who does not look to see what his neighbor says or does or thinks.

18

Natural ability without education has more often raised a man to glory and virtue than education without natural ability.

19

Let not your mind run on what you lack as much as on what you have already.

20

Do every act of your life as if it were your last.

Easily one of the most badass men who ever lived…

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