Stoic philosopher and Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius (121-180 C.E.) wrote The Meditations as a personal reflection on how to live a virtuous life. Instead of translating the complete work here, Needleman (philosophy, San Francisco State Univ.) and classics scholar Piazza highlight passages they deem comprehensible for readers new to philosophy, omitting those that would have required extensive footnotes. They keep the chapters' original order and use asterisks to indicate omitted sections so that readers can consult complete works should they desire. In general and historical introductions, they give some background knowledge of Marcus, his philosophical influences, and the historical time period, also announcing their intention with this simplified translation: to enable Marcus's work to reach a greater number of readers. General readers will find this newest translation enlightening and easily accessible. Recommended for public and academic libraries.-Scott Duimstra, Capital Area Dist. Lib., Lansing, MICopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Essential Marcus Aureliusby Jacob Needleman, John Piazza
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This inaugural-and all new-Tarcher Cornerstone Edition presents a stunningly relevant and reliable translation of the thoughts and aphorisms of the Stoic philosopher and Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius, properly placing the philosopher-king's writings within the vein of the world's great religious and ethical traditions.
The late antique world possessed no voice like that of Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius (121-180 CE). His private meditations on what constitutes a good life have withstood the centuries and reach us today with the same penetrating clarity and shining light as the words of Shakespeare, Emerson, or Thoreau.
In this remarkable new translation, bestselling religious philosopher Jacob Needleman and classics scholar John P. Piazza have retained the depth of Marcus's perspective on life. They have carefully selected and faithfully rendered those passages that clarify Marcus's role as someone who stood within the great religious and ethical traditions that extend throughout every culture in human history. The voice that emerges from their translation is a universal one, equally recognizable to students of Christ, Buddha, the Vedas, the Talmud, and to anyone who sincerely searches for a way of meaning in contemporary life.
Meet the Author
The acclaimed author of The American Soul, Why Can’t We Be Good? and Money and the Meaning of Life, Jacob Needleman is Professor of Philosophy at San Francisco State University, and former Director of the Center for the Study of New Religions at the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley. He lives in Oakland, CA.
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