“Today I don’t feel like doing anything. I just wanna lay in my bed.”
That sounds like a lazy song to sing. Oh! that’s indeed “The Lazy Song” by Bruno Mars. How lazy are you? Somewhat stuck between joyful and peachy? As human as you are, you owe the universe a moral responsibility of keeping the universe in order. Dear friends, meet Marcus Aurelius, your ancient life coach who thinks you’re better of than just staying in bed all day long.
Related media: The Life of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius
What Makes You Feel Lazy?
Marcus Aurelius was a Stoic philosopher and Roman Emperor (161 – 180 C.E.) who phrased what would later become one of the world’s most influential literary works, ”Meditations: A Life-Enhancing Work,” that holds tons of wisdom that’s still revolutionary to the lives of people today. This book addresses your attitude of staying warm and cozying in bed and rattles your still lazy butt out of bed, let these writings of Aurelius get your lazy snuggly self back to your senses:
“At dawn, when you have trouble getting out of bed, tell yourself: ‘I have to go to work — as a human being. What do I have to complain of, if I’m going to do what I was born for — the things I was brought into the world to do? Or is this what I was created for? To huddle under the blankets and stay warm?’”
Let’s assume you have an excuse like, cozying feels nice, and I’m happy and comfortable. If that’s your justification for laziness, then hear what Aurelius has in response to your attitude as a life coach:
“So you were born to feel ‘nice’? Instead of doing things and experiencing them? Don’t you see the plants, the birds, the ants and spiders and bees going about their individual tasks, putting the world in order, as best they can? And you’re not willing to do your job as a human being? Why aren’t you running to do what your nature demands?”
Oh Boy! That’s Not An Excuse
Aurelius’ inspirational words seems pretty harsh; that’s a reflection of his Stoic beliefs. Let’s take this opportunity and give you a crash course on what’s even Stoicism. This is an ancient Greek philosophy devised by Zeno of Citium around 300 B.C.E., that sought to teach the development of self-control and also overcome innate emotions. Of course, sleeping is good for your health and can even help you improve productivity, right? Yeah, but… well our ol’ friend Aurelius has something for you to consider first.
“Agreed!” He agrees with you. “But nature set a limit on that — as it did on eating and drinking. And you’re over the limit. You’ve had more than enough of that. But not of working. There you’re still below your quota.”
You’re Better Off Than You’re Not
“You don’t love yourself enough. Or you’d love your nature too, and what it demands of you. People who love what they do wear themselves down doing it, they even forget to wash or eat. Do you have less respect for your own nature than the engraver does for engraving, the dancer for the dance, the miser for money or the social climber for status? When they’re really possessed by what they do, they’d rather stop eating and sleeping than give up practicing their arts.”
“Is helping others less valuable to you? Not worth your effort?”
That’s harsh words from a 2,000-year-old life coach. Excuse us please, we’ve have to do our part to add up to the universe. See you later!
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Written by: Nana Kwadwo, Wed, Sep 11, 2019.