Human lives are brief and trivial. Yesterday a blob of semen; tomorrow embalming fluid, ash

Marcus Aurelius

Don’t let yourself forget how many doctors have died, furrowing their brows over how many deathbeds. How many astrologers, after pompous forecasts about others ends. How many philosophers, after endless disquisitions on death and immortality. How many warriors, after inflicting thousands of casualties themselves. How many tyrants, after abusing the power of life and death atrociously, as if they were themselves immortal.

How many whole cities have met their end: Helike, Pompeii, Herculaneum, and countless others.

And all the ones you know yourself, one after another. One who laid out another for burial, and was buried himself, and then the man who buried him—all in the same short space of time.

In short, know this: Human lives are brief and trivial. Yesterday a blob of semen; tomorrow embalming fluid, ash.

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