Marcus Aurelius, from Exhotations to Himself

meditations, translations

When you wake up in the morning and don’t want to get out of bed, think about this: I am getting up to do the work of a human being. Why am I dissatisfied with doing the things for which I exist? Or do I exist for the purpose of staying in my pajamas and keeping warm?

But, you say, this is more pleasant! Do you exist for pleasure? or for duty and action?

Look at the plants; the birds; the ants, the spiders; the bees—all work together to give order to the universe. Are you unwilling to do the part of a human being in that work? We are drawn to the work that is our nature. Sure, you need rest. That is necessary. But rest has natural boundaries too. (Book V, 1)

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