Recent Thoughts

Epictetus this time tells us that there are seven clear functions of mind: choice, refusal, yearning, repulsion, preparation, purpose, and assent. He concludes that only corrupt decisions made by a mind can pollute or clog its own function. Thus far in January I’ve reflected pretty hard on choice, refusal, purpose, and assent. So far those have been the guiding principles of my reflections in the new year, so it may behoove me to reflect on the other three today. ... Read More
Marcus Aurelius today questions whether one can know where they are without understanding the universe, who they are without understanding their purpose in life, and without either of those why they are. In Taoism, which I know little about, they have a term referred to as the uncarved block. The base existence without any exterior forces acting on one. A meditiation more than an ideal, if I understand correctly. Winnie the Pooh, arguably the strongest Taoist in child literature (The Tao of Pooh remains one of my favorite reads in my adolescence, although I probably need a refresher) simply flows with the wind. ... Read More
Clarifying my intentions to myself has been one of the strongest changes I’ve made over the past few years. I can’t say that in every stage and step of life I knew what my end goals are, but I’m getting closer. The big question people like to ask is “where do you see yourself in 5 (or 10 or 15) years?” My answer five years ago, like most people in their mid-twenties, was probably lacklackluster. ... Read More
Control your perceptions, Direct your actions properly, Willingly accept what’s outside your control. Perception, action, and will are the big three. Clearly with these three statements aligned huge improvements are guaranteed. For me the furthest from optimal is my ability to control my perceptions. When I feel things going the wrong way for me, my first reaction is people are acting subversively. For instance, when scheduling an appointment with someone’s assistant, I constantly second guess any questions they ask or changes they make. ... Read More
Today I reflect on saying no. No to new obligations, to invitations, and to exasperation (through saying no to undesired emotions.) Being able to say no, Seneca reasons, allows us to live more of our life the way we desire to live it. I can’t recall the first time I learned about the virtues of saying no. I do remember in 2012 answering a job interview question with the virtues of saying no. ... Read More