Seneca, Moral Epistle 74.33-34
“What is more demented than to be crushed by future events but not to preserve oneself for the torture only instead to seek and invite misery? You should put these things off, if you can’t escape them completely. Don’t you know that no one should be tortured by the future? Whoever has heard that they will have to undergo sufferings in fifty years is not upset unless they somehow jump over the space in between and have immersed themselves in trouble scheduled for the next generation.
It’s the same when spirits that are happily sick and casting about for reasons for sorrow grow sad over ancient and forgotten things. Both the past and the future go missing–we don’t feel either one. There is no grief, moreover, except what you get from what you feel. Goodbye”
Quid autem dementius quam angi futuris nec se tormento reservare, sed arcessere sibi miserias et movere? Quas optimum est differre, si discutere non possit. Vis scire futuro neminem debere torqueri? Quicumque audierit post quinquagesimum annum sibi patienda supplicia, non perturbatur, nisi si medium spatium transiluerit et se in illam saeculo post futuram sollicitudinem inmiserit; eodem modo fit, ut animos libenter aegros et captantes causas doloris vetera atque obliterata contristent. Et quae praeterierunt et quae futura sunt, absunt; neutra sentimus.1 Non est autem nisi ex eo, quod sentias, dolor. Vale.
One thought on “Feelings and What You Feel from Them”
I believe Sir William Osler, the father of modern medicine, expressed the same sentiment in his advice to young doctors. (Who, by the way, posted this note?)