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Meditations

104 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1438509488
ISBN-10: 1438509480
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Here, for our age, is [Marcus s] great work presented in its entirety, strongly introduced and freshly, elegantly translated. Robert Fagles --online --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Gregory Hays is associate professor of classics at the University of Virginia. He maintains an annotated bibliography of Fulgentius the Mythmaker.

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 172 pages
  • Publisher: Book Jungle (February 2, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1438509480
  • ISBN-13: 978-1438509488
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.4 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,389,196 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

63 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Nick VINE VOICE on September 26, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
When it comes to Stoic philosophy, Marcus Aurelius is second to Epictetus in the discussion of avoiding the indulgence of emotion. However, Aurelius' "Meditations" is different simply because it's the first leadership memoir based on Stoic philosophy.

The book is raw - it seems that these were never going to be published, so it had a bluntness to it and an honesty rare for a military leader, let alone one of the best Roman Emperors in history. He was a spiritual man, and tried to rationalize his duties. It lacks rhetorical flourish but it's honest.

I don't know if the book stands alone as a philosophical work, but it is an interesting work about self improvement, duty and service. Despite his reputation as a "philosopher king," the book remains a valuable book in leadership and history.

The Kindle version itself is pretty well laid out with ample enough notes and historical background on Aurelius himself to help you better understand the man himself. His notes range in length from a few sentences to multiple pages, so there's no real orderly format to the book (to me, this makes it more appealing.)

Since the Kindle version is free, give it a try. You'll find yourself better for it.
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102 of 108 people found the following review helpful By Karl Janssen on March 28, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
(Just to be clear, the Meditations is a five-star book. My two-star rating applies only to this Kindle edition.)

Marcus Aurelius, emperor of Rome, may be the closest mankind has ever come to producing the philosopher king that Plato envisioned in The Republic. A reluctant ruler and a reluctant warrior, much of his reign was spent in battle, defending the frontiers of the empire from the "barbarian" hordes. Fortunately for us, he carried a notebook along on his military campaigns, and thus we have the Meditations. Marcus's writings reveal him to be the last and greatest of the classical Stoics. Stoicism is a school of thought that asserts we have no control over our lives, only control over our perceptions. It advocates that the best life is the life that is lived in accordance with nature (not "nature" as in grass and trees, but "nature" as in the order of the universe). By concentrating one's thoughts and choices on what is good and virtuous, and disregarding the unimportant distractions of everyday life (even life and death are said to be neither good nor bad, but "indifferent"), we can avoid negative emotions like fear, anger, grief, and frustration, and live a life of happiness and tranquility. That's an oversimplification, of course. If you really want to know what Stoicism is and how it works read Epictetus or Seneca. What Marcus provides us with are the reflections of a man who studied and lived the Stoic life, and was its ultimate exemplar.
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45 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Van Wagoner VINE VOICE on May 14, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition
I love history, philosophy, and religion. This book covered all three subjects and kept my interest. It is not often that you get a philosopher emperor to write down his thoughts, but this is what happened here. You have a man who by all accounts was a great leader and a good man and we get to see what was important to him and what his underlying assumptions were about life.

His values are quite universal. For example, he values self-mastery, and doesn't like complainers. As an engineer, I enjoyed hearing about how he thought things worked. Many are out of date, but several are what we would consider accurate.

I got a better feel for Stoicism from his discussions and it helped me understand how the Romans thought prior to adopting Christianity. He did make a disparaging comment about the Christians; he thought they were fanatics that didn't work well with others. I noticed from history that he was involved in their persecution in Gaul.

I highly recommend this book for anyone interested in philosophy. It got me thinking and sparked more interest in Marcus Aurelius.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Michael A. Steen on June 20, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
I was fooled this morning into thinking that this .99 version was the Gregory Hays translation that all the reviews seemed to say it was. Indeed, the description from Amazon itself led me to believe that it was the Hays translation. IT IS NOT. The cover looks the same as the Hays, but the Hays translation is $7.38, not .99.
If you're looking for an edition of "Meditations," and you don't care which translation you get, then this is a great deal. But be warned that the reviews and Amazon itself are leading you astray.
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39 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Kiwi on July 22, 2010
As per the product description. Be careful with the version of the book you order. The edition published by General Books LLC is an OCR edition, with typos. As per the publishers website, there's absolutely NO editing done after this has been scanned in. The "Look Inside" view is of another publisher's book. General Books LLC has about half a million books available, all created by OCR scanning. Very poorly done and the prices does not reflect the very low quality.
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