| Epictetus. (c.A.D. 50c.A.D. 138). The Golden Sayings of Epictetus.|
The Harvard Classics. 190914.
|Remind thyself that he whom thou lovest is mortalthat what thou lovest is not thine own; it is given thee for the present, not irrevocably nor for ever, but even as a fig or a bunch of grapes at the appointed season of the year
| But these are words of evil omen.
| What, callest thou aught of evil omen save that which signifies some evil thing? Cowardice is a word of evil omen, if thou wilt, and meanness of spirit, and lamentation and mourning and shamelessness
| But do not, I pray thee, call of evil omen a word that is significant of any natural thing:as well call of evil omen the reaping of the corn; for it means the destruction of the ears, though not of the World!as well say that the fall of the leaf is of evil omen; that the dried fig should take the place of the green; that raisins should be made from grapes. All these are changes from a former state into another; not destruction, but an ordered economy, a fixed administration. Such is leaving home, a change of small account; such is Death, a greater change, from what now is, not to what is not, but to what is not now.|| 4|
| Shall I then no longer be?|| 5|
| Not so; thou wilt be; but something different, of which the World now hath need. For thou too wert born not when thou chosest, but when the World had need of thee.|| 6|