Meditations

Meditations

by Marcus Aurelius
4.1 68

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Overview

Meditations by Marcus Aurelius

The Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (AD 121-180) embodied in his person that deeply cherished ideal figure of antiquity, the philosopher-king. His Meditations, written in moments snatched from military campaigns and the rigors of politics, reveal a mind of exceptional clarity and originality, and a sprit attuned to both the particulars of human destiny and the vast patterns which underlie it.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781492201465
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 08/20/2013
Pages: 356
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.57(d)

About the Author

MARCUS AURELIUS was born Marcus Annius Verus in Rome in 121 CE, and assumed the name of Marcus Aurelius Antoninus on his adoption by the emperor Antoninus Pius, whom he succeeded in 161. Following his accession, M. Aurelius conferred half-rule of the empire upon his adoptive younger brother and fellow consul, L. Aurelius Verus, thus establishing the first collegiate principate. M. Aurelius ruled jointly with Verus until the latter's death in 169.

M. Aurelius was educated by Marcus Cornelius Fronto, the most acclaimed orator of his day, but abandoned rhetoric for Stoic philosophy. Carrying out the Stoic prin­ciples of moderation and virtuous conduct based on right reason, M. Aurelius ruled with an eye to the good of his subjects. But while justice prevailed at home, the borders of the empire lay under constant siege by barbarian hordes. Therefore, this most pacific and contemplative of emperors was forced to spend much of the latter part of his reign in the field, where he composed his Meditations.

Given that he was put under the pressure of incessant warfare, it is easy to see why M. Aurelius should have taken refuge in Stoic philosophy. The Stoics taught that the chief end of man is happiness, and is achieved by living in harmony with nature; the highest good lies in virtue, which is to live in harmony with reason. Part of right reason is knowing how to accept what we cannot change, and to ride out, as it were, the vicissitudes of fortune. It is the mark of a wise man to retain his composure through adversity, regarding it as a thing external and therefore indifferent. Written not as a continuous philosophical tract but as a series of daily thoughts, the Meditations nonetheless are the most important expression of late Stoicism. Simple in style and sincere in tone, they speak eloquently on life, death, and duty; taken together, they faithfully record the mind and character of a man for whom "philosophy" was not merely an academic pursuit of abstract truths but a true design for living.

Marcus Aurelius died in his camp on the Danube on March 17, 180, the nineteenth year of his reign.

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Meditations 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 68 reviews.
JWL More than 1 year ago
After reading this book I felt very inquisitive. A lot of the topics discussed by Marcus were topics in which we do not discuss often in philosophy. I had to do some outside research on topics such as "logos" and "stoicism". Overall, this was one of the most fascinating readings I have picked up in a long time. It was thrilling to read the writings of Marcus and to get an inside feel towards his life and philosophies regarding life. I honestly would recommend this book to any student of philosophy, who is looking to gain an intricate perspective regarding early philosophy. The only caution I would address in this book is the fact that Marcus Aurelius appears a little on the dark side of things. While reading his meditations you will find that he, at time, was slightly sinister in his thought; however, I do believe that he never thought they would get published. I am under the impression he believed his meditations would be personal, and for his eyes alone to read. Overall, this is a tremendous read, and I highly recommend it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a conservative politician with a deep respect for the republic, religion and the call of duty above self this remarkable thin book has been a great inspiration. The book was writen by Marcus, one the best emperors Rome knew, about 1,800 years ago The true begining of the book is 'Book II': ' ...I shall meet today inquisitive, ungrateful, violent, treacherous, envious, uncharitable men.' are the opening line. Marcus hits you hard with just how difficult it is to rule in a just manner. How does one get up each morning and look into the unfathomable chaos that wants to be and attempt to make 'good and right' of it? This is the goal of this great man. How should we live in order to accomplish this? How should we behave? How to we look upon and deal with those that attempt to bring this chaos? This book is excellent reading for anyone who has an interest in political leadership and I don't mean the 90% of elected officials that are in it for personal gain or vanity. This book is also excellent reading for anyone who has an interest in supporting a political leader because by reading this book you will learn to recognize what true leadership is and the way in which a true leader behaves. This is a wonderful thin little book that you will reflect on for a long, long time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was an excellent insight into the mind of a thoughtful Roman emperor in the age just after Christ. It appears he was not influenced much by Christianity, yet many of his Stoic observations are secularly parallel to Christian theology. This book was an unpretentious collection of philosophical observations that remind me of just how similar mankind's thought, hopes, concerns, etc. remain down the Ages.
Pengiun222 More than 1 year ago
This is a great book from way back that is filled with wisdom and suggestions on how to live right and harmoniously. I would reccomend this to book everyone.
Truejabber More than 1 year ago
The content is timeless and anyone interested in leading a meaningful life should read it. Unfortunately the formatting from MobileReference stinks; not any better than the free versions available, and was sometimes very difficult to read. This was disappointing since I have purchased other classic ebooks done by them which were fine. Content ***** Formatting *
AllenAS More than 1 year ago
This is a good book to read and understand the position and thought of ancient philosopher, specially, The emperor and head of the state. It is good start to become familiar with one of the oldest class of thinking "Stoicism" But is much better to read the life of emperor Marcus Aurelius first to know him and his position at the time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
After having read The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday, I was compelled to dive into stoicism and see what all the fuss was about. I looked into Holiday's The Daily Stoic website and was recommended this book as a starting point. Needless to say, I was not disappointed. Can't wait to check out the works of Seneca and Epictetus!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A great read to mull over
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manirul01 More than 1 year ago
Lovely...! beautiful.....!.... Just enjoy it.....!
manirul01 More than 1 year ago
Lovely...! beautiful.....!.... Just enjoy it.....!
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Avelee More than 1 year ago
I have the paperback version and really wanted one on my nook, which can also be read on my iPad through the nook app. I need the Martin Hammond translation as that is what we are using in class. Though the paperback is that of Martin Hammond, the nook book version is not. I wish I was informed of this before I purchased it, the cover is completely different in my nook library because it is a different book. If I would have paid more than $.95 I would be much more upset, but I do not appreciate false advertising. I know this is most likely a technical issue, but it needs to be fixed. I usually spend at least $10 on school-related nook books (not textbooks). It makes me want to switch to the kindle, where I can pay with my checking account and am not limited to credit cards.
AdamZ1 More than 1 year ago
I pick up this book and reread selections whenever I'm feeling depressed. Time and time again the book reminds you that life is fleeting, but Aurelius' approach to this truth is different than our modern "so make the most of it" attitude. Instead, he focuses on the fact is itself, on the insignificance of life, so as to make a person with context. You'll have to read the book to understand what I mean.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Exactly what I was looking for!
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