Enchiridion IX


Sickness is an impediment to the body, but not to the will unless itself pleases. Lameness is an impediment to the leg, but not to the will; and say this to yourself with regard to everything that happens. For you will find it to be an impediment to something else, but not truly to yourself.

I think I have answered all your earlier comments that needed a response; if not, let me know. I am encouraged by your interest. I was beginning to wonder if you were just humoring me. 

I do think that the decision to start with the Enchiridion may have been a difficulty, since (as I was telling James) it contains only settled principles rather than the arguments for them. We might have more wisely started with the Discourses, but here we are. We can go back and do the Discourses another time if there is interest. You might find this short biography of Epictetus handy; the part it is calling 'the Handbook' is the Enchiridion, which is a word that means something like 'handbook' or 'manual' in Greek.


james said...

Is there a link?

AVI might have some things to say about this section. When I've had pneumonia, the weakness extended very far--I couldn't think clearly or seem to decide clearly. I'd agree with Epictetus here in the sense that the sickness didn't affect the will, but it certainly impaired the operation of the will.

Grim said...

Indeed, there is a link that I inexplicably omitted.

Grim said...

I also wrote 'Latin' instead of 'Greek,' which is obviously wrong; not only are these books in Greek originally, but 'manual' is nearly literally the Latin for 'handbook.' Both mistakes are repaired. I'm not sure where my mind was at the time.

Tom said...

In the current state of our republic and society, it seems a good time to review the Stoics.