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Stoic Quotes on Pain and Pleasure

Enjoy present pleasures in such a way as not to injure future ones.
Seneca (Letters from a Stoic)
For it is not death or pain that is to be feared, but the fear of pain or death.
Epictetus (Discourses, 108)
The soul does violence to itself when it is overpowered by pleasure or by pain.
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations, 167 A.C.E.)
It is the nature of the wise to resist pleasures, but the foolish to be a slave to them.
Epictetus
If one oversteps the bounds of moderation, the greatest pleasures cease to please.
Epictetus
And indeed he who pursues pleasure as good, and avoids pain as evil, is guilty of impiety.
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations, 167 A.C.E.)
Just as crimes, even if they have not been detected when they were committed, do not allow anxiety to end with them; so with guilty pleasures, regret remains even after the pleasures are over.
Seneca (Moral Letter to Lucilius)
If one accomplishes some good albeit with toil, the toil passes, but the good remains; if one does something dishonorable albeit with pleasure, the pleasure passes, but the dishonor remains.
Gaius Musonius Rufus
Let the part of thy soul which leads and governs be undisturbed by the movements in the flesh, whether of pleasure or of pain; and let it not unite with them, but let it circumscribe itself and limit those affects to their parts.
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations, 167 A.C.E.)
Everything exists for some end, a horse, a vine. Why dost thou wonder? Even the sun will say, I am for some purpose, and the rest of the gods will say the same. For what purpose then art thou? to enjoy pleasure? See if common sense allows this.
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations, 167 A.C.E.)
And remember that philosophy requires only the things which thy nature requires; but thou wouldst have something else which is not according to nature.- It may be objected, Why what is more agreeable than this which I am doing?- But is not this the very reason why pleasure deceives us?
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations, 167 A.C.E.)
And yet what reason is there that he should provide a living? For if it be to support life, life itself is after all a thing indifferent. If it be for pleasure, pleasure too is a thing indifferent. While if it be for virtue, virtue in itself is sufficient to constitute happiness.
Unknown Stoic (Maybe Chrysippus) (Quoted by Diogenes Laërtius)
What is our nature? To be free, noble, self-respecting. What other animal blushes? What other can have a conception of shame? We must subordinate pleasure to these principles, to minister to them as a servant, to evoke our interests and to keep us in the way of our natural activities.
Epictetus (Discourses: Chapter 7, 108)
If you are struck by the appearance of any promised pleasure, guard yourself against being hurried away by it; but let the affair wait your leisure, and procure yourself some delay. Then bring to your mind both points of time: that in which you will enjoy the pleasure, and that in which you will repent and reproach yourself after you have enjoyed it; and set before you, in opposition to these, how you will be glad and applaud yourself if you abstain. And even though it should appear to you a seasonable gratification, take heed that its enticing, and agreeable and attractive force may not subdue you; but set in opposition to this how much better it is to be conscious of having gained so great a victory.
Epictetus (Enchirdion)
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Quotes by Ancient Stoics

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A Seeker's Thoughts on Stoicism
The stoic philosophers of the ancient world were wise individuals, that is for sure. They mostly strived after virtue and detachment from no-good passions. The stoics also had a vision of a ideal sage which transcended the usual limitations that people had. The Stoic Sage was constantly in a state of tranquility and contentment with whatever life presented unto him. For some stoics the sage was just an ideal target to aim against and not a concrete reality to be realized.


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