Epictetus Quotes

Who was Epictetus?

Born a slave in Turkey, the Greek Epictetus ended up as one of the coolest philosophers of his time.

Unlike many theoretical wise men, Epictetus practiced what he preached. His Stoic philosophy was and still is a way of life.

Born January 1, 55
Died January 1, 135
Aged 80 years old

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Best 128 Quotes by Epictetus – Page 1 of 5

“A half-hearted spirit has no power. Tentative efforts lead to tentative outcomes.”

“A ship should not ride on a single anchor, nor life on a single

“Any person capable of angering you becomes your master;
he can anger you only when you permit yourself to be disturbed by him.”

“Attach yourself to what is spiritually superior, regardless of what other people think or do. Hold to your true aspirations no matter what is going on around you.”

“Character matters more than reputation.”

“Circumstances don't make the man, they only reveal him to himself.”

“Clearly define the person you want to be.”

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“Content yourself with being a lover of wisdom, a seeker of the truth. Return and return again to what is essential and worthy.”

“Control thy passions lest they take vengeance on thee.”

“Conventional thinking – its means and ends – is essentially uncreative and uninteresting. Its job is to preserve the status quo for overly self-defended individuals and institutions.”

“Curb your desire — don’t set your heart on so many things and you will get what you need.”

“Desire and aversion, though powerful, are but habits. And we can train ourselves to have better habits. Restrain the habit of being repelled by all those things that aren’t within your control, and focus instead on combating things within your power that are not good for you.”

“Difficulties are things that show a person what they are.”

“Do not try to seem wise to others.”

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“Do you wish to be invincible? Then don’t enter into combat with what you have no real control over.”

“Don't explain your philosophy. Embody it.”

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“We need to learn the art of letting go: of the past, of unresolved grievances, of our younger selves. Nobody gets out of here alive.”

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“Don’t seek for everything to happen as you wish it would, but rather wish that everything happens as it actually will – then your life will be serene.”

“Either God wants to abolish evil, and cannot; or he can, but does not want to.”

“Events do not just happen, but arrive by appointment.”

“Every habit and faculty is preserved and increased by its corresponding actions: The habit of walking makes us better walkers, regular running makes us better runners. It is the same regarding matters of the soul. Whenever you are angry, you increase your anger; you have increased a habit and added fuel to a fire.”

“Except for extreme physical abuse, other people cannot hurt you unless you allow them to.”

“Freedom is secured not by the fulfilling of one's desires, but by the removal of desire.”

“Freedom is the only worthy goal in life. It is won by disregarding things that lie beyond our control.”

“From this instant on, vow to stop disappointing yourself. Separate yourself from the mob. Decide to be extraordinary and do what you need to do – now.”

“Grow up! Who cares what other people think about you?”

“Happiness is commonly mistaken for passively experienced pleasure or leisure but true happiness is a verb. It’s the ongoing dynamic performance of worthy deeds.”

“He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.”

“He who laughs at himself never runs out of things to laugh at.”

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“How long can you afford to put off who you really want to be? Your nobler self cannot wait any longer.”

“I laugh at those who think they can damage me. They do not know who I am, they do not know what I think, they cannot even touch the things which are really mine and with which I live.”

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“The sweetest of all sounds is praise.”

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