If perspective is one of our most powerful tools for Aristotle’s the good life, then how can we mold it to create our ideal reality today?
By following the path of the greats.
Here is one of them. Seneca’s prose is meant to be ruminated on, savoring each phrase for the power in his well thought out choices.
I imagine to myself that the testing time is drawing near, that the day that is going to see judgement pronounced on the whole past of my life has actually arrived, and I take a look at myself and address myself in these terms: “All that I’ve done and said up to now counts for nothing. My showing to date, besides being heavily varnished over, is of paltry value and reliability as a guarantee of my spirit. I’m going to leave it to death to settle what progress I’ve made. Without anxiety, then, I’m making ready for the day when the tricks and disguises will be put away and I shall come to a verdict on myself, determining whether the courageous attitudes I adopt are really felt or just so many words, and whether or not the defiant challenges I’ve hurled at fortune have been more pretense or pantomime. Away with the world’s opinion of you – it’s always unsettled and divided. Away with the pursuits that have occupied the whole of your life – death is going to deliver the verdict in your case. Yes, all your debates and learned conferences, your scholarly talk and collection of maxims from the teachings of philosophers, are in no way indicative of genuine spiritual strength. Bold words come even for the timidest. It’s only when you’re breathing your last that the way you’ve spent your time will become apparent. I accept the terms, and feel no dread of the coming Judgment.” (Seneca, Letter XXVI from Letters from a Stoic)
With death’s presence always a day away, what will you do with today?
Dr. Christopher Stepien is a chiropractor, chronic pain specialist, and A.R.T. provider, and clinic director of the Barefoot Rehabilitation Clinic in Parsippany, NJ. He has been trained under the Integrative Diagnosis system for “clinical excellence”. He loves to help people pursue their own hero’s journey. Please reach out to him if he can be of a service in any way. It doesnt hurt to ask.