Fleeting Life


Some things rush into existence, and others hasten out of it; and of those coming into life some part is already extinct.

Movement and flux are continually renewing the world, just as the unbroken course of time makes eternity forever young.  In this flowing river, on which no one can stand, what is there for us to value among the things rushing by?  It would be like a man falling in love with a passing sparrow, which is already out of sight.

Surely a man’s life is as fleeting as the vaporisation of the soul from his blood or his breath inhaled from the air?  For just as you draw in a single breath and then return it, which you do in every moment, so you will have to return the actual power of breathing that you had originally at your birth, to the source from which it came.

Marcus Aurelius

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