January 21st, 2018

At the simplest level, we all understand that we can’t fix the world, but we can fix one part of one problem. We can save a starfish or a gallon of gas or help one person to see one patch of light. And that is enough. We ought not to beat ourselves up for not saving the world. Epictetus knew this millennia ago.

“Make the best use of what is in your power, and take the rest as it happens. Some things are up to us, and our impulses, desires, aversions—in short, whatever is our own doing. Our bodies are not up to us, nor, are our possessions, our reputations, or our public offices, or, that is, whatever is not our own doing.” —Epictetus. p. 31

From How To Be A Stoic: Using Ancient Philosophy To Live A Modern Life by Massimo Picliucci

Each morning we awaken with a small bag containing 1,000 pieces of gold. Each coin is a minute we’ll have today before we lay our heads back on the pillow and go to sleep, to enter the little death from which we have no guarantee we’ll awaken. Yet we do awaken. Until we don’t.

Today, take one action that makes the world better. Spend your gold wisely. That is enough.


Found in my electronic chapbook.

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