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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



10243
Seneca The Younger, Letters, 37.3


nanThen how can I free myself? you ask. You cannot escape necessities, but you can overcome them. By force a way is made.[3] And this way will be afforded you by philosophy. Betake yourself therefore to philosophy if you would be safe, untroubled, happy, in fine, if you wish to be, – and that is most important, – free. There is no other way to attain this end.


Intertexts (texts cited often on the same page as the searched text):

10 results
1. Philo of Alexandria, That Every Good Person Is Free, 60 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

60. And indeed the man whom it is not possible either to compel to do anything, or to prevent from doing anything, cannot possibly be a slave; and one cannot compel or prevent the virtuous man. Therefore the virtuous man cannot be a slave; and that he is never under compulsion or under any restraint is quite plain; for that man is under restraint who does not obtain what he desires. But the wise man only desires such things as proceed from virtue, in which it is impossible for him to be disappointed. And again, if he is under compulsion, then it is plain that he does something against his will; but in all cases where there are actions, they are either good ones proceeding from virtue, or evil ones proceeding from wickedness, or else they are of an intermediate and indifferent character.
2. Dio Chrysostom, Orations, 36.27-36.32, 36.37 (1st cent. CE

36.27.  "This, then, is our situation; and if you wish to do us all a favour, postpone your discussion of the mortal city — possibly our neighbours may after all grant us leisure tomorrow, and not compel us to exert ourselves against them as is generally our wont — and tell us instead about that divine city or government, whichever you prefer to call it, stating where it is and what it is like, aiming as closely as possible at Plato's nobility of expression, just as but now you seemed to us to do. For if we understand nothing else, we do at least understand his language because of our long familiarity with it, for it has a lofty sound, not far removed from the voice of Homer. 36.28.  I in turn was exceedingly pleased with the simple frankness of the old gentleman, and with a laugh I said, "My dear Hieroson, if yesterday when the enemy made their attack you had bidden me to take up arms and give battle like Achilles, I should have obeyed one part of your injunction, endeavouring to come to the aid of men who are my friends; but the other part, I fancy, I could not have managed, however much I should have wished to do so, to fight as your Achilles did. Similarly in the present instance also I will do part of what you bid — I will strive to tell my story as best I can in my own way; Though ancient heroes I'll not try to match, whether it be Plato or Homer. For, you remember, the poet says that in the case of Eurytus himself such rivalry worked not to his advantage, since it was aimed at his superiors. However, I shall not lack for devotion," I added. 36.29.  Yet, despite my brave words to Hieroson, I was moved and heaved a sigh, as it were, when I bethought me of Homer and Plato."Well then," said I, "the term 'city' must be taken on the understanding that our sect is not literally defining the universe as a city; for that would be in direct conflict with our doctrine of the city, which, as I have said, the Stoics define as an organization of human beings; and at the same time it would possibly not be suitable or convincing, if, after stating in the strict sense of the term that the universe is a living creature, they should then call it a city 36.30.  for that the same thing is both a city and a living being is a proposition that, I imagine, no one would readily consent to entertain. Yet the present orderly constitution of the universe ever since the whole has been separated and divided into a considerable number of forms of plants and animals, mortal and immortal, yes, and into air and earth and water and fire, being nevertheless by nature in all these forms one thing and governed by one spirit and force — this orderly constitution, I say, the Stoics do in one way or another liken to a city because of the multitude of the creatures that are constantly either being born or else ending their existence in it, and, furthermore, because of the arrangement and orderliness of its administration. 36.31.  "This doctrine, in brief, aims to harmonize the human race with the divine, and to embrace in a single term everything endowed with reason, finding in reason the only sure and indissoluble foundation for fellowship and justice. For in keeping with that concept the term 'city' would be applied, not, of course, to an organization that has chanced to get mean or petty leaders nor to one which through tyranny or democracy or, in fact, through decarchy or oligarchy or any other similar product of imperfection, is being torn to pieces and made the victim of constant party faction. Nay, term would be applied rather to an organization that is governed by the sanest and noblest form of kingship, to one that is actually under royal goverce in accordance with law, in complete friendship and concord. 36.32.  And this, indeed, is precisely what the wisest and eldest ruler and law-giver ordains for all, both mortals and immortals, he who is the leader of all the heaven and lord of all being, himself thus expounding the term and offering his own administration as a pattern of the happy and blessed condition, he whom the divine bards, instructed by the Muses, praise in song and call the 'father of gods and men.' 36.37.  For kingship is a word more appropriate to a city than to a home. For surely men would not apply the term King to him who is over all and then refuse to admit that the whole is governed by a king, nor would they admit that they are governed by a king and then deny that they are members of a state or that there is a kingly administration of the universe. And again, conceding 'administration,' they would not balk at accepting 'city,' or something very like it, as descriptive of that which is administered.
3. Epictetus, Discourses, 1.9.7, 1.9.24, 1.12.24, 2.2.4, 2.5.8, 2.17.22, 3.2.1, 3.2.5, 3.2.16, 3.3.10, 3.5.7, 3.13.11, 3.19.1, 3.22.42, 3.24.95, 4.1.1, 4.1.56-4.1.60, 4.1.76-4.1.79, 4.1.98, 4.1.110, 4.1.128-4.1.131, 4.7.10-4.7.11, 4.10.13, 4.13.24 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

4. Epictetus, Enchiridion, 1.3, 53.1-53.2 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

5. New Testament, Galatians, 2 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

6. Seneca The Younger, De Otio Sapientis (Dialogorum Liber Viii), 4.1 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

7. Seneca The Younger, De Vita Beata (Dialogorum Liber Vii), 15.7 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

8. Seneca The Younger, Letters, 51.9, 54.7, 61.3 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

9. Diogenes Laertius, Lives of The Philosophers, 7.121 (3rd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

7.121. But Heraclides of Tarsus, who was the disciple of Antipater of Tarsus, and Athenodorus both assert that sins are not equal.Again, the Stoics say that the wise man will take part in politics, if nothing hinders him – so, for instance, Chrysippus in the first book of his work On Various Types of Life – since thus he will restrain vice and promote virtue. Also (they maintain) he will marry, as Zeno says in his Republic, and beget children. Moreover, they say that the wise man will never form mere opinions, that is to say, he will never give assent to anything that is false; that he will also play the Cynic, Cynicism being a short cut to virtue, as Apollodorus calls it in his Ethics; that he will even turn cannibal under stress of circumstances. They declare that he alone is free and bad men are slaves, freedom being power of independent action, whereas slavery is privation of the same;
10. Stobaeus, Eclogues, None



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
cleanthes, as author of the hymn Wilson, Paul and the Jewish Law: A Stoic Ethical Perspective on his Inconsistency (2022) 66
cosmopolitanism Wilson, Paul and the Jewish Law: A Stoic Ethical Perspective on his Inconsistency (2022) 66
free will, stoicism Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
freedom, of wise man Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
freedom, stoicism Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
freedom (eleutheria) Wilson, Paul and the Jewish Law: A Stoic Ethical Perspective on his Inconsistency (2022) 66
law, cosmic Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
law, natural Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
law of nature/natural law, stoic politics Wilson, Paul and the Jewish Law: A Stoic Ethical Perspective on his Inconsistency (2022) 66
necessity/require (anagkē, anagkazō) Wilson, Paul and the Jewish Law: A Stoic Ethical Perspective on his Inconsistency (2022) 66
paul, determinism Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
paul, free will Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
pleasure Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
providence, stoicism Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
slavery Wilson, Paul and the Jewish Law: A Stoic Ethical Perspective on his Inconsistency (2022) 66
socrates Wilson, Paul and the Jewish Law: A Stoic Ethical Perspective on his Inconsistency (2022) 66
stoicism, cosmology Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
stoicism, determinism Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
stoicism, freedom Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
stoicism, logos Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
stoicism, world citizenship Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
stoicism Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
value (axia) Wilson, Paul and the Jewish Law: A Stoic Ethical Perspective on his Inconsistency (2022) 66
weapon Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
wise, man' Malherbe et al., Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J (2014) 301
zeus Wilson, Paul and the Jewish Law: A Stoic Ethical Perspective on his Inconsistency (2022) 66