21 September 2010

Seneca Eassy

The first essay I chose was 'On the Reasons for Withdrawing from the World'. Seneca discusses how humans should not become slaves to the body, but rather embrace and enjoy it. He states that many others we will meet in life will judge us on our body or enslave it, but as an individual we need to cherish our body and yet be prepared to sacrifice it when the time comes. The ideas of negative visualization and fatalism are seen in this essay. Seneca wants us to remember that while we cherish our body we must also not take in for granted. In this aspect the concept of negative visualization plays out when we remind ourselves what it would be like without our healthy body. The second idea of Stoicism was fatalism. We must be ready to give up our body when the time comes, which is something decided by fate.

The second essay I chose was 'On Saving Time'. In this essay, Seneca tells his friend that time is slipping away from them and if they do not begin to enjoy every second life has offered them, they will never begin to enjoy life as a whole. Seneca points out that the greatest lost of time is when we give our time to carelessness and choose to ignore what is going on around us. The Stoicism ideas that are expressed in this essay are control and fatalism. We can not control how much time we are given, therefore we should not worry about it and instead use the time we have as productively and joyfully as possible. We also do not know when our time will run out, therefore we should go with the flow and play your role as best as possible, leaving the rest up to fate.

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