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>It seems we would rather study anything than how to remain free and unenslaved.
>Philosophers speak in paradoxes, and what of the other arts -- are they different? What is more paradoxical than cutting into a persons eye to restore their vision. If someone suggested this procedure to someone ignorant of medicine, they would laugh in the practitioners face... little wonder then, if many of the truths of philosophy also impress the masses as paradoxical.
>This is the beginning of philosophy, -- an awareness of ones own mental fitness. Consciousness of its weakness will keep you from talking difficult subjects. As it is though, some people strain at a pamphlet and still want to devour an entire treatise. Naturally they can't digest it, and get heartily sick of the whole business. They need to first figure out what their capacity is. In the realm of logic it is easy to refute someone ignorant of a subject. But in the affairs of life no one offers themselves to be examined, and whomever presumes to examine us we resent. Yet Socrates used to say that the unexamined life was not worth living.
>When did anger ever teach someone to play music or pilot a ship? Do you imagine that your anger is going to help teach me the far more complex business of life? I know of a man who cried, clinging to Epaphroditus' knees saying how miserable he was now that he was down to his last million... and what did Epaphroditus do -- laugh at him as you are laughing now? No, he was appalled, and said "dear man, how did you keep silent up till now? How have you endured it?"
>If i cherish my body, I make a slave of myself, if I cherish my property, I make a slave of myself; Because I've disclosed the means to make me captive. When a snake pulls back its head, right away I think "hit it just there, on the part it is protecting." In the same way you may be sure that whatever you are seen to protect, that will become your enemy's focus of attack. Keep this in mind, then there will be no one you will need to fear or flatter.
>Remember that it is we who torment, we who make difficulties for ourselves -- that is, our opinions do. What for instance does it mean to be insulted? Stand by a rock and insult it, and what have accomplished? If someone responds to insult like a rock, what has the abuser gained with his invective? If however, he has his victim's weakness to exploit, then his efforts are worth while.
>Produce a person who can get the better of someone whose judgments are superior. You can't, though try as you might. This is gods law and nature's: "let the best man win" But "best" in his area of expertise.
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