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Meditations, Marcus Aurelius


The personal writings of the Roman Emperor who ruled from 161 to 180CE. A philosophical jungle and Stoic perspective. He writes on building mental strength and self control through mindfulness – paying attention to what’s going on in the moment.. similar to contemporary Buddhist concept of mindfulness, except the Stoics didn’t specify a focus on the breath. The focus on prayer- but from Stoic POV, prayer is for your own benefit, and not for the benefit of the higher power. It is conductive to a broader perspective and to equanimity. Marcus wrote on gratitude – by consciously reviewing everything you have to be grateful for- health, family, friends, skills, etc. you can replace negative thoughts with positive ones, have greater joy and peace of mind. So long ago, yet so important and should resonate with all humankind. I do hope so because we all need this.

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