Marcus Aurelius, Meditations: Book 7:48

When your talk is about mankind, view earthly things as if looking down on them from some point high above — flocks, armies, farms, weddings, divorces, births, deaths, the hubbub of the law-courts, desert places, various foreign nations, festivals, funerals, markets; all the medley of the world, and the ordered conjunction of opposites.

Commentary on Book 7:48

  1. ambrose_mnemopolous Post author

    The “conjunction of opposites” is a philosophical teaching attributed to Heraclitus, a pre-Socratic philosopher who lived from about 535 to 475 BC. The teaching would become influential in alchemical philosophy. In his Refutation of All Heresies, Hippolytus, the 3rd century Christian theologian, attributes to Heraclitus this explanation of the dictum: “The road up and the road down are the same thing” (Refutations 9.10.3).

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Marcus Aurelius was a Roman Emperor from 161 to 180 AD. He was the last of the Five Good Emperors, and is also considered one of the most important Stoic philosophers.