Monday, December 18, 2006

A few choice tidbits from Epictetus

If you are told that such an one speaks ill of you, make no defence against what was said, but answer, He surely knew not my other faults, else he would not have mentioned these only!

In company avoid frequent and undue talk about your own actions and dangers. However pleasant it may be to you to enlarge upon the risks you have run, others may not find such pleasure in listening to your adventures...To border on coarse talk is also dangerous. On such occasions, if a convenient opportunity offer, rebuke the speaker. If not, at least by relapsing into silence, colouring, and looking annoyed, show that you are displeased with the subject.

When Xanthippe was chiding Socrates for making scanty preparation for entertaining his friends, he answered:—“If they are friends of ours, they will not care for that; if they are not, we shall care nothing for them!”


aaronash said...

So... No more blogging then, eh?

Chris said...

He only said not to speak about such things; I'm still free to write about them. And I'm certainly not forcing anyone to read them. Only those "who find such pleasure in listening to [my] adventures" are reading.

Anonymous said...

That bit about bordering on coarse talk - it's a bit embarrassing when I'm supposed to be the mature youth pastor figure in a particular conversation with a student, but when something "coarse" comes up, I can't seem to avoid giggling like an eighth grader. Any attempt to relapse into silence, colour, and look annoyed is a dismal failure, I'm afraid.

And yes, this comment is breaking Epictetus' first rule in the paragraph to which I refer.