43 Incredible Eqictetus Quotes

41 Incredible Epictetus Quotes

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Epictetus was a philosopher from Phrygia in 55 AD. He was born as a slave until he was freed and moved to Nicopolis. He taught a way of life using fate, and things that are out of our control. He died in 135 AD at the age of about 80.

“A ship should not ride on a single anchor, nor life on a single hope.”

“Crows pick out the eyes of the dead, when the dead have no longer need of them; but flatterers mar the soul of the living, and her eyes they blind.”

“Difficulties are things that show a person what they are.”

“Difficulties show men what they are. In case of any difficulty, God has pitted you against a rough antagonist that you may be a conqueror, and this cannot be without toil.”

“Does a Philosopher apply to people to come and hear him? does he not rather, of his own nature, attract those that will be benefited by him—like the sun that warms, and the food that
sustains them?”

“Everything has two handles, one by which it may be borne, the other by which it may not.”

“Exceed due measure, and the most delightful things become the least delightful.”

“First learn the meaning of what you say, and then speak.”

“For it is not death or hardship that is a fearful thing, but the fear of death and hardship.”

“For it is not death or pain that is to be feared, but the fear of pain or death.”

“Freedom is the right to live as we wish.”

“Have this thought ever present with thee, when thou losest any outward thing, what thou gainest in its stead; and if this be the more precious, say not, I have suffered loss.”

“If then all things that grow, nay, our own bodies, are thus bound up with the whole, is not this still truer of our souls?”

“If we are not stupid or insincere when we say that the good or ill of man lies within his own will, and that all beside is nothing to us, why are we still troubled?”

“If what charms you is nothing but abstract principles, sit down and turn them over quietly in your mind: but never dub yourself a Philosopher.”

“It is hard to combine and unite these two qualities, the carefulness of one who is affected by circumstances, and the intrepidity of one who heeds them not. But it is not impossible: else
were happiness also impossible.”

“it is impossible for anyone to begin to learn that which he thinks he already knows.”

“It is the nature of the wise to resist pleasures, but the foolish to be a slave to them.”

“It is your own convictions which compels you; that is, choice compels choice.”

“Let death be daily before your eyes, and you will never entertain any abject thought, nor too eagerly covet anything.”

“Let no man think that he is loved by any who loveth none.”

“Let silence be your general rule; or say only what is necessary and in few words.”

“Liars are the cause of all the sins and crimes in the world.”

“Men are disturbed not by things, but by the view which they take of them.”

“Men are disturbed, not by things, but by the principles and notions which they form concerning things.”

“Nature gave us one tongue and two ears so we could hear twice as much as we speak.”

“Never call yourself a philosopher, nor talk a great deal among the unlearned about theorems, but act conformably to them. Thus, at an entertainment, don’t talk how persons ought to eat, but
eat as you ought. For remember that in this manner Socrates also universally avoided all ostentation.”

“No thing great is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig, I answer you that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear
fruit, then ripen.”

“O slavish man! will you not bear with your own brother, who has God for his Father, as being a son from the same stock, and of the same high descent? But if you chance to be placed in some
superior station, will you presently set yourself up for a tyrant?”

“Only the educated are free.”

“Practice yourself, for heaven’s sake in little things, and then proceed to greater.”

“Reason is not measured by size or height, but by principle.”

“Thou shalt not blame or flatter any.”

“To a reasonable creature, that alone is insupportable which is unreasonable; but everything reasonable may be supported.”

“To have left undone what thou shouldst have done: to have lost the faithfulness, the reverence, the modesty that is in thee!”

“To the rational being only the irrational is unendurable, but the rational is endurable.”

“Two principles we should always have ready — that there is nothing good or evil save in the will; and that we are not to lead events, but to follow them.”

“When you close your doors, and make darkness within, remember never to say that you are alone, for you are not alone; nay, God is within, and your genius is within. And what need have they
of light to see what you are doing?”

“When you want to hear a philosopher, do not say, ‘You say nothing to me’; only show yourself worthy or fit to hear, and then you will see how you will move the speaker.”

“Why, then, do you walk as if you had swallowed a ramrod?”

“You are impatient and hard to please.”