The Enchiridion - Part 18

Part 18 covers much the same ground as part 10.

When a raven has croaked inauspiciously, let not the appearance hurry you away with it; but straightway make a distinction in your mind and say, "None of these things is signified to me, but either to my poor body, or to my small property, or to my reputation, or to my children, or to my wife: but to me all significations are auspicious if I choose. For whatever of these things results, it is in my power to derive benefit from it."

No news is bad news, if you take care to turn it into something that can benefit you. In large part, this "benefit" seems to be the opportunity to hone your Stoic logic, which is a little circular. I think it's useful advice however.

Yesterday I had a decent crash on my bicycle - landing on concrete at about 40km/h. I'm a bit beaten up (thanfully nothing serious) and most annoyingy to me, out of action from cycling. I've recently started taking it more seriously so the time out is a bit of an imposition.

As I was walking (well, hobbling) my bike home, I started trying to think how I could turn this to my advantage. At first I started thinking about how "lameness is not an impediment to the will", so I could consciously practice not letting my injuries dull my thinking. I also thought about restraining my aversion - at this point I didn't know how badly injured I was, and I practiced not wishing that it was only minor.

And finally, I concentrated on accepting that my cycling stats and habits would be interrupted, and that it is out of my control. It made me realise that I'd perhaps been putting too much thought into something that is not essentially mine.

When I found out that I was OK, I was thankful. I'm bruised and scraped and sore, but I appreciate having access to working limbs and a spine that's roughy where it should be. It won't always be that way.

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