Lucius Annaeus SenecaLucius Annaeus Seneca, (4 B.C.-A.D. 65) Roman Stoic philosopher, statesman, dramatist, "Seneca the Younger"

Lucius Annaeus Seneca Quote

“That is why we give to children a proverb, or that which the Greeks call Chreia, to be learned by heart; that sort of thing can be comprehended by the young mind, which cannot as yet hold more. For a man, however, whose progress is definite, to chase after choice extracts and to prop his weakness by the best known and the briefest sayings and to depend upon his memory, is disgraceful; it is time for him to lean on himself. He should make such maxims and not memorize them. For it is disgraceful even for an old man, or one who has sighted old age, to have a note-book knowledge. "This is what Zeno said." But what have you yourself said? "This is the opinion of Cleanthes." But what is your own opinion? How long shall you march under another man's orders? Take command, and utter some word which posterity will remember. Put forth something from your own stock.”

Lucius Annaeus SenecaLucius Annaeus Seneca
~ Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Epistulae Morales ad Lucilium (Moral Letters to Lucilius), Letter XXXIII

Ratings and Comments

Mike, Norwalk

I like it

Felipe, São Paulo

Amazing to see such a great stoic name and quote here. Paradoxically, is a quote about not quoting people anymore...

E Archer, NYC

Indeed! Reading and listening are only one half of the dialogue  what do I have to say in response?  I have learned a great deal putting my thoughts down on paper and working them into an honest expression of my own.  I don't agree with everything that I write, and it gets edited or reworded until it's true.  Discernment requires some effort to separate the wheat from the chaff.


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