Meditations

Marcus Aurelius

Meditations

24min

24min

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Marcus Aurelius was the emperor of Rome from 161 until his death in 180. His life was about so much more than his state duties, however: Stoic philosophy played an enormous role in his life. In his book, Meditations, written in the last years of his life, the Roman Emperor and philosopher provides an extensive list of contemplations on how a righteous man should conduct himself. His book teaches us sometime-honoured pearls of wisdom: for example, that death is a natural, inevitable part of life, so we must learn not to fear it. During our brief time on this Earth, we can strive to live a life that is worth living, and one that conforms to our true nature, which should be based on honesty in both our thoughts, and our deeds. 

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Analysis and key concepts

01.

An attempt to answer life’s great questions with stoic philosophy and good examples

02.

The world in which we live is fleeting and constantly changing

03.

At the end of our lives, there is death: a natural process that we should not fear in any way

04.

Pain is bearable if it is imposed by nature, and it does not threaten your integrity

05.

Our relationships with others can be defined by kindness, understanding and compassion

06.

Nature wants our souls to stay pure, not to be touched by pain or the distractions of this world

07.

A few tips to live a life based on integrity, humility and kindness

08.

Other Tips to maximise your time on Earth and help you live a just life

09.

Quotes

10.

Take-home message

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Many useful tips to:

  • Get a better understanding of the philosophy that one of the greatest emperors of the Roman Empire lived his life by.
  • Accept death and change as an integral part of life.
  • Understand how a stable life is based on honesty, integrity, and pureness of spirit.

Born in the year 121, Marcus Aurelius was the emperor of Rome from 161 until his death, nineteen years later. He inherited his position from his adopted father, Antoninus Pius, and he shared the first years of his reign with his adopted brother, Lucius Verus. Alongside his role as emperor, Marcus Aurelius was a passionate philosopher of Stoicism: his book, Meditations, is considered among the greatest works of ethical and spiritual reflection of all time, and, not surprisingly - has become a must-read for many philosophers and statesmen who have succeeded him.

Publishing house:

Routeledge

Year:

2003

Pages:

256

ISBN:

978-0812968255