Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Marcus Aurelius, The Pagan Christian

Atheists are always telling lies. I'd read MEDITATIONS one evening in the military so even when I was an atheist I knew other atheists lied like hell about Aurelius. Atheists disgusted me when I was an atheist. I realized after a while out of all these obvious idiots I must be the biggest idiot of them all to be lumped in with people of such poor character and integrity. Whatever they claimed to believe in, I didn't want any part of it after seeing what sorts they really were.

Marcus Aurelius, before Christ, believed there was something beyond the "gods" of his era, he believed there was a true God of whom all these archetypes were a feeble attempt to quantify. He believed that this ultimate God was very, very good. Better than Apollo or Mars or any of these false idols. He also thought it was the goal of this supreme being to keep all of us from harm. He deduced correctly that the Supreme Being would be just but would not have an axe to grind or a blood lust to sate. It would be the will of God that none of his creations should perish. Aurelius deduced all of these things before Christianity swept the ancient world.

"Now departure from the world of men is nothing to fear, if gods exist: because they would not involve you in any harm. If they do not exist, or if they have no care for humankind, then what is life to me in a world devoid of gods, or devoid of providence? But they do exist, and they do care for humankind: and they have put it absolutely in man's power to avoid falling into the true kinds of harm."
—Marcus Aurelius, Meditations 2.11

I always thought this guy was pretty impressive for somebody who did not have access to the New Testament.


Justin said...

Yeah, great quotes. Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu were visionary pre-Christians as well.

Opened Eyes said...

He lived circa 150 years after Christ. He was a scholar, so he might have known of JC's teaching.