Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Senecan advice for travelers

Wherever you go, there you are:

How can the sight of new countries give you pleasure? Getting to know cities and places? That agitation of yours turns out to be useless. Do you want to know why your running away doesn’t help? You take yourself along. Your mental burden must be put down before any place will satisfy you.
Seneca, Epistles 28.2. Quoted in Ward Farnsworth’s The Practicing Stoic: A Philosophical User’s Manual (Boston: David R. Godine, 2018). Adapted from an unidentified public-domain translation.

Also from this book
Senecan advice for liberal-arts types : Dunning-Kruger Montaigne

comments: 4

Chris said...

Horror and doubt distract
His troubled thoughts, and from the bottom stir
The hell within him ; for within him Hell
He brings, and round about him, nor from Hell
One step, no more than from himself, can fly
By change of place.

— Milton

Michael Leddy said...

Well chosen.

When I began reading the first clause, I thought, Oh no, not him. And then I saw that it was someone else, someone with greater self-knowledge.

Berit said...

I like this! "...Your mental burden must be put down before any place will satisfy you."

Michael Leddy said...

The key to a genuine vacation!