Meditations – Marcus Aurelius

This was a difficult read because it was hard to follow someone’s thought when you haven’t been the one pondering them. Also, this copy by MacMillan Collectors Library, which I bought because of the gorgeous gilt edges and adorable petite dimension, only contains the direct translation from the original, which means I’ve had to try and decipher the wisdom all by myself.

That was no easy task as there was often little context and I must admit my effort waned quickly as a result. However, it was obvious the Emperor pondered frequently and deeply about death, which as someone in her 40’s beginning to confront her own mortality, it was much welcomed wisdom and most certainly affirmed my personal decision to turn my life upside down and follow my happiness.

I remember feeling as overwhelmed reading The Art of War in the original old-school Chinese text in my teens. Nevertheless, it is an interesting read so if you are keen to gleam the great wisdom of the great Emperor, may I point out to you that there are editions that come with interpretation? These might yield more insights for your effort. I most certainly would have gone for one of those if I had known beforehand. Alas…

And that reminds me – I’ve since acquired an English edition of The Art of War, I think it’s high time I read that alongside the original text and see how much I’ve missed!

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