If something is difficult for you to accomplish, do not then think it impossible for any human being; rather, if it is humanly possible and corresponds to human nature, know that it is attainable by you as well.
Every man is worth just so much as the things about which he busies himself.
Neither worse then nor better is a thing made by being praised.
Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future, too.
It is not fit that I should give myself pain, for I have never intentionally given pain even to another.
The goal that you hope you will one day arrive at after a long and roundabout journey you are able to possess right now, if only you do not deny it to yourself. That is, if you can let go of the past, entrust the future to Providence and redirect the present according to justice and the sacred. To the sacred, so that you welcome what has been given to you, for Nature has brought this to you, and you to it; and to justice, in order that you may speak the truth freely and without distortion, and that you may act in accordance with what is lawful and right. Do not allow yourself to be hindered by the harmful actions, judgments, or the words of another, or by the sensations of the flesh which has formed itself around you. Let the body take care of those. But if, when you have come to the end, having let go of all other things, you honor only your guiding part and the divinity that is within you, and you do not fear ceasing to live so much as you fear never having begun to live in accordance with Nature--then you will be a man who is worth of the Cosmos that created you; and you will cease to live like a stranger in your own land, that is, surprised at unexpected everyday occurrences and wholly distracted by this and that.
Before we can bring happiness to others, we first must be happy ourselves; nor will happiness abide within us unless we confer it on others. If there be a smile upon our lips, those around us will soon smile too; and our happiness will become the truer and deeper as we see that these others are happy. "It is not seemly that I, who, willingly, have brought sorrow to none, should permit myself to be sad," said Marcus Aurelius, in one of his noblest passages.
Never let the future disturb you - you will meet it with the same weapons of reason and mind that, today, guard you against the present...
Men seek retreats for themselves, houses in the country, sea-shores, and mountains; and thou too art wont to desire such things very much. But this is altogether a mark of the most common sort of men, for it is in thy power whenever thou shalt choose to retire into thyself. For nowhere either with more quiet or more freedom from trouble does a man retire than into his own soul, particularly when he has within him such thoughts that by looking into them he is immediately in perfect tranquility; and I affirm that tranquility is nothing else than the good ordering of the mind. Constantly then give to thyself this retreat, and renew thyself; and let thy principles be brief and fundamental, which, as soon as thou shalt recur to them, will be sufficient to cleanse the soul completely, and to send thee back free from all discontent with the things to which thou returnest. For with what art thou discontented? With the badness of men? Recall to thy mind this conclusion, that rational animals exist for one another, and that to endure is a part of justice, and that men do wrong involuntarily; and consider how many already, after mutual enmity, suspicion, hatred, and fighting, have been stretched dead, reduced to ashes; and be quiet at last.- But perhaps thou art dissatisfied with that which is assigned to thee out of the universe.- Recall to thy recollection this alternative; either there is providence or atoms, fortuitous concurrence of things; or remember the arguments by which it has been proved that the world is a kind of political community, and be quiet at last.- But perhaps corporeal things will still fasten upon thee.- Consider then further that the mind mingles not with the breath, whether moving gently or violently, when it has once drawn itself apart and discovered its own power, and think also of all that thou hast heard and assented to about pain and pleasure, and be quiet at last.- But perhaps the desire of the thing called fame will torment thee.- See how soon everything is forgotten, and look at the chaos of infinite time on each side of the present, and the emptiness of applause, and the changeableness and want of judgement in those who pretend to give praise, and the narrowness of the space within which it is circumscribed, and be quiet at last. For the whole earth is a point, and how small a nook in it is this thy dwelling, and how few are there in it, and what kind of people are they who will praise thee.
The things you think about determine the quality of your mind.