Finished on 2/11/17 in Brisbane, Australia.

"12-32: What a tiny part of the boundless abyss of time has been allotted to us - and this is soon vanished in eternity; what a tiny part of the universal substance and the universal soul; how tiny in the whole earth the mere clod on which you creep. Reflecting on all this, think nothing important other than active pursuit where your own nature leads and passive acceptance of what universal nature brings."

"2-7: Do externals tend to distract you? Then give yourself the space to learn some further good lesson, and stop your wandering. That done, you must guard against the other sort of drift. Those who are dead to life and have no aim for the direction of every impulse and, more widely, every thought are drivelers in deed as well as word."

"4-26: You have seen that: now look at this. Do not trouble yourself, keep yourself simple. Someone does wrong? He does wrong to himself. Has something happened to you? Fine. All that happens has been fated by the Whole from the beginning and spun for your own destiny. In sum, life is short: make your gain from the present moment with right reason and justice. Keep sober and relaxed."

"6-21: If someone can prove me wrong and show me my mistake in any thought or action, I shall gladly change. I seek the truth, which never harmed anyone: the harm is to persist in one’s own self-deception and ignorance."

"8-14: Whenever you meet someone, ask yourself first this immediate question: ‘What beliefs does this person hold about the good and bad in life?’ Because if he believes this or that about pleasure and pain and their constituents, about fame and obscurity, death and life, then I shall not find it surprising or strange if he acts in this or that way, and I shall remember that he has no choice but to act as he does."

"8-15: It would be absurd to be surprised at a fig-tree bearing figs."

"8-58: He who fears death fears either unconsciousness or another sort of consciousness. Now if you will no longer be conscious you will not be conscious either of anything bad. If you are to take on a different consciousness, you will be a different being and life will not cease."

"10-33: In any given material circumstance what can be done or said to soundest effect? Whatever that is, it is in your power to do it or say it - and make no pretence of ‘obstacles in the way’."

"10-34: Your children are no more than ‘leaves’. ‘Leaves’ too these loud voices of loyal praise, these curses from your opponents, this silent blame or mockery: mere ‘leaves’ likewise those with custody of your future fame. All these ‘come round in the season of spring’: but then the wind blows them down, and the forest ‘puts out others’ in their stead. All things are short-lived - this is their common lot - but you pursue likes and dislikes as if all was fixed for eternity. In a little while you too will close your eyes, and soon there will be others mourning the man who buries you."

Notes and Quotes - Meditations (Marcus Aurelius)