Marcus Aurelius Quotes


Type: Roman Imperor

Born: 26 April 121

Died: 17 March 180 CE

Marcus Aurelius was Roman Emperor from 161 to 180. He ruled with Lucius Verus as co-emperor from 161 until Verus' death in 169. Marcus Aurelius was the last of the so-called Five Good Emperors. He was a practitioner of Stoicism, and his untitled writing, commonly known as the Meditations, is the most significant source of the modern understanding of ancient Stoic philosophy.

Marcus Aurelius Quotes

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.

Don't go on discussing what a good person should be. Just be one.

In the morning when thou risest unwillingly, let this thought be present - I am rising to the work of a human being. Why then am I dissatisfied if I am going to do the things for which I exist and for which I was brought into the world?

Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.

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.

Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.

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

Our life is what our thoughts make it.

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.

Do every act of your life as though it were the very last act of your life.

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.

It is not death that a man should fear, but he should fear never beginning to live.

Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present.

The first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit. The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are.

Here is a rule to remember in future, when anything tempts you to feel bitter: not "This is misfortune," but "To bear this worthily is good fortune.

How much time he gains who does not look to see what his neighbour says or does or thinks, but only at what he does himself, to make it just and holy.

Accept whatever comes to you woven in the pattern of your destiny, for what could more aptly fit your needs?

Humans have come into being for the sake of each other, so either teach them, or learn to bear them.

If someone can prove me wrong and show me my mistake in any thought or action, I shall gladly change. I seek the truth, which never harmed anyone: the harm is to persist in one's own self-deception and ignorance.

For outward show is a wonderful perverter of the reason.

Look beneath the surface; let not the several quality of a thing nor its worth escape thee.

The best revenge is not to be like your enemy.

When another blames you or hates you, or people voice similar criticisms, go to their souls, penetrate inside and see what sort of people they are. You will realize that there is no need to be racked with anxiety that they should hold any particular opinion about you.

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

All things fade and quickly turn to myth.

What we cannot bear removes us from life; what remains can be borne.

From the philosopher Catulus, never to be dismissive of a friend's accusation, even if it seems unreasonable, but to make every effort to restore the relationship to its normal condition.

All things of the body stream away like a river, all things of the mind are dreams and delusion; life is warfare, and a visit to a strange land; the only lasting fame is oblivion.

Observe the movements of the stars as if you were running their courses with them, and let your mind constantly dwell on the changes of the elements into each other. Such imaginings wash away the filth of life on the ground.

striid andWthdraw into yourself. Our master-reason asks no more than to act justly, and thereby to achieve calm.

The soul becomes dyed with the colour of its thoughts.

You need to avoid certain things in your train of thought: everything random, everything irrelevant. And certainly everything self-important or malicious. You need to get used to winnowing your thoughts, so that if someone says, "What are your thinking about?" you can respond at once (and truthfully) that you are thinking this or thinking that.

You should always be ready to apply these two rules of action, the first, to do nothing other than what the kingly and law-making art ordains for the benefits of humankind, and, the second, to be prepared to change your mind if someone is at hand to put you right and guide you away from some groundless opinion.

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

No man is happy who does not think himself so.

Perfection of character is this: to live each day as if it were your last, without frenzy, without apathy, without pretence.

We must make haste then, not only because we are daily nearer to death, but also because the conception of things and the understanding of them cease first.

Do not act as if you had ten thousand years to throw away. Death stands at your elbow. Be good for something while you live and it is in your power.

That which has died falls not out of the universe. If it stays here, it also changes here, and is dissolved into its proper parts, which are elements of the universe and of thyself. And these too change, and they murmur not".

And so accept everything that happens, even if it is disagreeable, because it leads to this, to the health of the universe and to the prosperity and felicity of Zeus

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

Give up your thirst for books, so that you do not die a grouch.

The memory of everything is very soon overwhelmed in time.

That which is really beautiful has no need of anything; not more than law, not more than truth, not more than benevolence or modesty.

Every living organism is fulfilled when it follows the right path for its own nature.

We should remark the grace and fascination that there is even in the incidentals of Nature's processes.. When a loaf of bread,. for instance,. is in the oven,. crack appear in it here and there; and these flaws,. though not intended in the baking,. have a rightness of their own,. and sharpen the appetite..

Regain your senses, call yourself back, and once again wake up. Now that you realize that only dreams were troubling you, view this 'reality' as you view your dreams.

How good it is, when you have roast meat or suchlike foods before you, to impress on your mind that this is the dead body of a fish, this the dead body of a bird or pig.

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.

What am I but a little flesh, a little breath, and the thinking part that rules the whole?

Observe always that everything is the result of change, and get used to thinking that there is nothing Nature loves so well as to change existing forms and make new ones like them.

There is no man so blessed that some who stand by his deathbed won't hail the occasion with delight.

You are a little soul carrying about a corpse, as Epictetus used to say.

The world is mere change, and this life, opinion.

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