68. What greater evil could you wish a miser, than long life?
Indeed. There are those who are seemingly always down, always complaining about something. The Eeyores of the world, if you will. And here I’m considering a miser to be one who is wretched in general, as opposed to the modern meaning of a penny-pincher. The word originally comes from the Latin word for wretched.
If life is so arduous, so unfulfilling, so miserable, why not just end it? Stop living. Or make a change. But some just derive a sick pleasure from the criticizing, the complaining, and the condemning. So engrained are these negative pathways that the person is a constant ball of negativity, no matter the situation.
If their experience of life is just one wretched experience after another, and attempts to help them out by family and friends have fallen flat a hundred times over, why do they go on living? What a great evil a long life must be, indeed. But in truth, even a “long” life is breathtakingly brief in the grand scheme of things.
Not the most uplifting of quotes to begin one’s day life with, but something to ponder. In the true Cynic / Stoic tradition. It makes one think. Life is a gift and we should cherish every breath we take. Our opportunity to partake in life is so astonishingly short — here today, and gone in an instant. A cosmic blink.
So savor it. Live a life of purpose. Make the most of the time you get to spend here on Earth. Because once death comes and you realize you’ve lived a life wasted, it will be too late.
Until next time,
A tried-and-true cure for miserliness is reading, and what better to read than a collection of timeless sayings written 2,000 years ago by a Syrian slave in Rome.