Be content to go without

Set aside now and then a number of days during which you will be content with the plainest of food, and very little of it, and with rough, coarse clothing, and will ask yourself, ‘Is this what one used to dread?


Common opinion

Tranquility can’t be grasped except by those who have reached an unwavering and firm power of judgment — the rest constantly fall and rise in their decisions, wavering in a state of alternately rejecting and accepting things. What is the cause of this back and forth? It’s because nothing is clear and they rely on the most uncertain guide : common opinion.


Different attitudes to virtue

Those who have had to struggle and work hard to overcome the meanness of their own nature are more deserving of praise than those who have never had any trouble with themselves.


Don't let yourself be dragged around

Accepting our fate is a fundamental part of leading a fulfilling life. In this passage, I compare a dog tied to a cart to human beings. A dog must follow the cart's direction when attached to it. It has no choice in the matter.