Meeting Frustration, Chaos and Despair Head On. And loving it.

Marcus Auerelius was a chump. Cleverer than I, and emperor of the modern world. But a halfwit, at best.

Old Marcus A. spake thus:

"Begin each day by saying to yourself, 'Today I shall meet people who are interfering, ungrateful, arrogant, deceitful, envious, and selfish.' They are made this way because of their ignorance of what is good and evil... but I, who have seen the nature of good and beauty, and of evil and its ugliness, know that the inner nature of the man who does evil is the same as mine, therefore I can't be harmed by any of these men, for no one can impose on me what is degrading."

Yet my philosophy is richer, though -- at a glance -- far poorer.

For I add to this outlook the respective wisdoms of Newton and Hanlon:

An object will stay at rest or continue at a constant velocity unless acted upon by an external unbalanced force

...and...

Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity

Hence, with my modern stoic attitude, I proudly announce:

I begin each day by reminding myself,

"Today I shall meet with frustration, anxiety, anger, antagonism, annoyance, mistrust, frivolity, ignorance, hubris, jealousy, laziness and despair.

But things must be such, as we are born in ignorance, and continue as such -- without tremendous interference. Momentum, entropy and the scourge of complexity lead all of us toward chaos, panic and compromise, despite the most industrious of minds and the noblest of hearts.

If, on tiny occasions, we succeed at bringing joy in place of despair, knowledge in place of ignorance or order over chaos, no matter how insignificant is our victory, we shall smile quietly and confidently, knowing that having beaten nature, we will be punished with ample severity."

 

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