Time is the one loan which even a grateful recipient cannot repay …

— Seneca from “Letters from a Stoic.” P. 4

What man can you show me who places any value on his time, who reckons the worth of each day, who understands that he is dying daily? For we are mistaken when we look forward to death; the major portion of death has already passed. Whatever years behind us are in death’s hands. …

Nothing is ours except time. We were entrusted by nature with ownership of this single thing, so fleeting and slippery that anyone who will can oust us from possession. What fools the mortals be! They allow the cheapest and most useless things, which can easily be replaced, to be charged in the reckoning, after they have acquired them; but they never regard themselves as in debt when they have received some of that precious commodity, – time! And yet time is the one loan which even a grateful recipient cannot repay.”

Leave a Comment