Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Balance and Harmony - Unpublished Selections Explained, Med. VI.55
Meditation VI.55 - Balance and Harmony - Translated by George Long and rewritten by Russell McNeil
If sailors abused the helm or the sick the doctor, would they listen to anybody else; or how could the helm secure the safety of those in the ship or the doctor the health of those whom she attends?(1)
(1) This meditation is intended as an argument for internal harmony and balance. The ultimate authority in anything we do is of course nature. In this reflection, the helm and doctor represent authority in particular relationships in their respective regimes. There is a relationship between helm and sailor, as there is between doctor and patient. When there is dissent within any relationship, all suffer. This is especially true if we are disrespectful toward the authority of those whose skills lend them authority within the relationship. All instances of abuse are fundamentally incited by self-interest - motivated by a desire for power, reputation or material gain. These desires surface internally when we lose sight of our true nature as divine beings. Our first human drive is in building community; we lose sight of this when we reverse the priority of mind over body and permit our base drives - our animal passions - to control our actions. This can only produce imbalance and disharmony internally, and unhappiness generally.
Russell McNeil, PhD, is the author of The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius: Selections Annotated and Explained by Skylight Paths Publishing. The unpublished selections presented in this Blog are provided as supplemental material to the published selections which are annotated and explained in the book. The published selections are referenced in this Blog by page number and section.