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Marcus Aurelius Quotes | Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be. Be one.

Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius, whose full name was Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus, was a Roman emperor who reigned from 161 to 180 AD. He is best known for his philosophical writings and is considered one of the most important Stoic philosophers.


Marcus Aurelius was born on April 26, 121 AD, in Rome, Italy. He came from a wealthy and influential family and received an excellent education. As a young man, he showed a keen interest in philosophy and studied under the guidance of prominent Stoic philosophers.


In 161 AD, Marcus Aurelius became the emperor of Rome, succeeding Antoninus Pius. His reign was marked by military conflicts, particularly with the Parthian Empire in the East and Germanic tribes in the North. Despite the challenges, he was known for his dedication to duty and his commitment to the well-being of the Roman Empire.


Marcus Aurelius is best remembered for his philosophical work titled "Meditations" (or "To Himself"). These writings were personal reflections on Stoic philosophy, ethics, and the nature of life and death. In his meditations, he explored themes such as humility, self-discipline, and the importance of living in accordance with nature.


His Stoic philosophy emphasized the acceptance of things outside of our control and the cultivation of virtue as the path to a good life. He believed in living in harmony with nature and fulfilling one's duties to society. Marcus Aurelius saw philosophy as a practical guide to living a virtuous life and facing challenges with equanimity.


Marcus Aurelius died on March 17, 180 AD, while on a military campaign in present-day Austria. He was succeeded by his son, Commodus, whose reign marked a significant departure from the philosophies and principles espoused by Marcus Aurelius.


Despite his military and political responsibilities, Marcus Aurelius is remembered as one of the great philosopher-emperors of Rome. His writings continue to be studied and appreciated for their wisdom and insight into the human condition.


Marcus Aurelius Quotes


Marcus Aurelius Quotes

Here are a few notable quotes by Marcus Aurelius:

  1. "You have power over your mind - not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength."

  2. "The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts."

  3. "The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury."

  4. "Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be. Be one."

  5. "Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking."

  6. "If it is not right, do not do it; if it is not true, do not say it."

  7. "The obstacle is the way."

  8. "The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts."

  9. "The universe is change; our life is what our thoughts make it."

  10. "Do not indulge in dreams of having what you have not, but reckon up the chief of the blessings you do possess, and then thankfully remember how you would crave for them if they were not yours."

These quotes reflect Marcus Aurelius's Stoic philosophy and offer insights into his thoughts on self-discipline, virtue, the power of the mind, and the pursuit of a good life.



Marcus Aurelius Quotes On Life

Here are some Marcus Aurelius quotes specifically on life:

  1. "Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them."

  2. "The art of living is more like wrestling than dancing."

  3. "Remember that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other."

  4. "The whole future lies in uncertainty: live immediately."

  5. "Life is neither good nor evil, but only a place for good and evil."

  6. "The present moment is all we have. The past is gone, and the future is uncertain. Embrace the present and live fully in the now."

  7. "Life is short. Do not waste it on trivial matters, but focus on what truly matters and brings you joy."

  8. "Choose not to be harmed, and you won't feel harmed. Don't feel harmed, and you haven't been."

  9. "The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts."

  10. "When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive, to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love."

These quotes reflect Marcus Aurelius's contemplation on the nature of life, the importance of seizing the present moment, cultivating a positive mindset, and finding value and meaning in our existence.



Marcus Aurelius Quotes On Success

Here are some Marcus Aurelius quotes specifically on success:

  1. "Do every act of your life as if it were your last."

  2. "Do not act as if you were going to live ten thousand years. Death hangs over you. While you live, while it is in your power, be good."

  3. "The true worth of a man is to be measured by the objects he pursues."

  4. "The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury."

  5. "Accept the things to which fate binds you and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart."

  6. "The first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit. The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are."

  7. "If it is not right, do not do it; if it is not true, do not say it."

  8. "No man can escape his destiny, the next inquiry being how he may best live the time that he has to live."

  9. "The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts."

These quotes by Marcus Aurelius touch on themes such as the importance of living with integrity, accepting the inevitability of fate, maintaining inner peace, and striving for virtuous actions. They provide insights into his thoughts on achieving success by aligning one's actions and mindset with truth, goodness, and self-discipline.



Marcus Aurelius Quotes On Love

Here are some Marcus Aurelius quotes specifically on love:

  1. "The best way to avenge yourself is to not be like the wrongdoer."

  2. "Love the discipline you know, and let it support you. Entrust everything willingly to the gods, and then make your way through life — no one’s master and no one’s slave."

  3. "Love the humble art you have learned, and take rest in it."

  4. "The first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit. The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are."

  5. "When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive, to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love."

  6. "Accept the things to which fate binds you and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart."

  7. "Love only what happens, what actually happens. Your need for acceptance can make you invisible in this world. Don't let anything stand in the way of this."

  8. "Choose not to be harmed, and you won't feel harmed. Don't feel harmed, and you haven't been."

  9. "Look well into thyself; there is a source of strength which will always spring up if thou wilt always look."

These quotes by Marcus Aurelius touch on various aspects of love, including self-love, acceptance, gratitude, and the importance of maintaining a calm and untroubled spirit. They offer insights into his philosophy on love as a force that should guide our actions and interactions with others, as well as our perception and acceptance of the world around us.



Marcus Aurelius Quotes On Discipline

Here are some Marcus Aurelius quotes specifically on discipline:

  1. "You have power over your mind - not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength."

  2. "Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking."

  3. "The first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit. The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are."

  4. "The true worth of a man is to be measured by the objects he pursues."

  5. "Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be. Be one."

  6. "No man can escape his destiny, the next inquiry being how he may best live the time that he has to live."

  7. "Choose not to be harmed, and you won't feel harmed. Don't feel harmed, and you haven't been."

  8. "The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way."

These quotes by Marcus Aurelius highlight the importance of discipline in shaping one's mindset and actions. They emphasize the power of controlling one's thoughts, maintaining inner peace, and accepting the challenges and obstacles that come with life. Marcus Aurelius believed that discipline and self-mastery were essential for leading a virtuous and fulfilling life.



Marcus Aurelius Quotes About Happiness

Here are some Marcus Aurelius quotes specifically on happiness:

  1. "The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts."

  2. "Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking."

  3. "The happiness of those who want to be popular depends on others; the happiness of those who seek pleasure fluctuates with moods outside their control; but the happiness of the wise grows out of their own free acts."

  4. "The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts: therefore, guard accordingly, and take care that you entertain no notions unsuitable to virtue and reasonable nature."

  5. "Happiness is a good flow of life."

  6. "He who lives in harmony with himself lives in harmony with the universe."

  7. "Happiness is not in things; it is in you."

  8. "He who is not a good servant will not be a good master."

  9. "The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury."

  10. "If you are pained by external things, it is not they that disturb you, but your judgment of them. And it is in your power to wipe out that judgment now."

These quotes by Marcus Aurelius emphasize that happiness comes from within and is influenced by our thoughts, actions, and perspectives. He believed that true happiness lies in the cultivation of virtue, self-awareness, and living in harmony with oneself and the world. Aurelius encouraged individuals to focus on their own inner state and not rely on external factors for lasting happiness.



Marcus Aurelius Quotes About Change

Here are some Marcus Aurelius quotes specifically on change:

  1. "The universe is change; our life is what our thoughts make it."

  2. "Loss is nothing else but change, and change is Nature's delight."

  3. "Time is a sort of river of passing events, and strong is its current; no sooner is a thing brought to sight than it is swept by and another takes its place, and this too will be swept away."

  4. "Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking."

  5. "Everything is change; and you yourself are in continuous mutation and in a manner in continuous destruction and the whole universe too."

  6. "Let us accept the inevitable, but without being crushed thereby, that it may lead us onward to the next phase."

  7. "The universe is change; life is understanding."

  8. "Life is neither good nor evil, but only a place for good and evil."

  9. "Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future too."

  10. "Accept the things to which fate binds you and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart."

These quotes by Marcus Aurelius highlight his recognition of the inevitability of change and the transient nature of life. He encourages acceptance and adaptability in the face of change, viewing it as a natural part of the universe. Aurelius believed that by understanding and embracing change, individuals can navigate life's challenges and grow in wisdom and resilience.

Marcus Aurelius Quotes


Marcus Aurelius Quotes About Leadership

Here are some Marcus Aurelius quotes specifically on leadership:

  1. "The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury."

  2. "The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane."

  3. "He who lives in harmony with himself lives in harmony with the universe."

  4. "Do not act as if you were going to live ten thousand years. Death hangs over you. While you live, while it is in your power, be good."

  5. "Choose not to be harmed, and you won't feel harmed. Don't feel harmed, and you haven't been."

  6. "A man's worth is no greater than the worth of his ambitions."

  7. "If it is not right, do not do it; if it is not true, do not say it."

  8. "The true worth of a man is to be measured by the objects he pursues."

  9. "The best way to avenge yourself is to not be like the wrongdoer."

  10. "Don't let your reflection on the whole sweep of life crush you. Don't fill your mind with all the bad things that might still happen. Stay focused on the present situation and ask yourself why it's so unbearable and can't be survived."

These quotes by Marcus Aurelius offer insights into his thoughts on leadership, emphasizing the importance of integrity, self-discipline, and a sense of purpose. He believed that true leadership involves staying true to one's principles, making decisions based on what is right and just, and having a clear vision and ambition for the greater good. Additionally, Aurelius emphasizes the significance of self-reflection and focusing on the present moment to navigate the challenges of leadership.


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