35. Friendship & Love

Learn how to love & friendship.

Be consistent with yourself

whether you desire

the same things today

as that you desired yesterday.

That which is settled & solid

does not wander from its place

hence strive to develop


find your space within.

On the Friendship of Kindred Minds

When I urge you so strongly to your studies, it is my own interest which I am consulting; I want your friendship, & it cannot fall to my lot unless you proceed, as you have begun, with the task of developing yourself.

For now, although you love me, you are not yet my friend, A friend loves you, of course; but one who loves you is not in every case your friend.

Friendship, accordingly, is always helpful, but love sometimes even does harm.

Try to perfect yourself, if for no other reason, in order that you may learn how to love.

Hasten, in order that, while thus perfecting yourself for my benefit, you may not have learnt perfection for the benefit of another.

To be sure, I am already deriving some profit by imagining that we two shall be of one mind, & that whatever portion of my strength has yielded to age will return to me from your strength, although there is not so very much difference in our ages.

Yet I wish to rejoice in the accomplished fact; We feel a joy over those whom we love, even when separated from them, but such a joy is light & fleeting; the sight of a person & their presence & communion with them, afford something of living pleasure.

This is true, at any rate, if one not only sees the person one desires, but the sort of person one desires.

Give yourself to me, as a gift of great price & that you may strive the more, reflect that you yourself are mortal & that I am old.

Hasten to find me

but hasten to find yourself first.

Make progress & before all else

endeavour to be consistent with yourself.

When you would find out whether you have accomplished anything, consider whether you desire the same things to-day that you desired yesterday.

A shifting of the will indicates that the mind is at sea, heading in various directions, according to the course of the wind, That which is settled & solid does not wander from its place.

This is the blessed lot of the completely wise person & also, to a certain extent, of one who is progressing & has made some headway.

Now what is the difference between these two classes of people?

The one is in motion, to be sure, but does not change its position; it merely tosses up & down where it is; the other is not in motion at all.

Farewell, Seneca, StoicTaoist.

34. What makes a good student?

Teach & Learn

What makes a good student?

A task once begun is half done

decide & begin.

How should a student act or behave?

If a person’s acts are out of harmony, their soul is crooked.

See to it that all your actions & words, harmonise & correspond with each other, & are stamped in the same mold.

The best part of goodness is

the Will

to become good!

One who is complete

isn’t constraint

nor wanting.

On a Promising Pupil

I grow in spirit & leap for joy, & shake off my years, & my blood runs warm again, whenever I understand, from your actions, how far you have outdone yourself.

If the farmer is pleased when the tree develops so that it bears fruit, if every teacher regards their pupil as though one discerned in them their own early adulthood.

What then, do you think are the feelings of those who have trained a mind, & molded a young idea, when they see it suddenly grown to maturity?

I claim you for myself; you are my handiwork; When I saw your abilities, I laid my hand upon youu, I exhorted youu, I applied the goad & did not permit you to march lazily, but roused you continually.

Now I do the same; though, this time I am cheering on one who is in the race, & so in turn cheers me on.

“What else do you want of me?”, you ask; “the will is still mine”, Well, the will in this case is almost everything, & not merely the half, as in the proverb.

“A task once begun is half done”

It is more than half, for the matter of which we speak is determined by the soul.

Hence, it is that the larger part

of goodness is

the will

to become, good.

You know what I mean by a good person?

One who is complete, finished

whom no constraint

or need can render bad.

I see such a person in you, if only you go steadily on & bend to your task, & see to it that all your actions & words, harmonise & correspond with each other, & are stamped in the same mold.

If a person’s acts are out of harmony, their soul is crooked.

Farewell, Seneca, StoicTaoist.