Philosophers / Thinkers

82 Seneca Quotes on Love, Time, & Death (STOICISM)

Top 15 Most Famous Seneca Quotes About Life

True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so, wants nothing.” 

Seneca
Sometimes even to live is an act of courage.
Sometimes even to live is an act of courage.
We suffer more in imagination than in reality.
We suffer more in imagination than in reality.
As long as you live, keep learning how to live.
As long as you live, keep learning how to live.
The bravest sight in the world is to see a great man struggling against adversity.
The bravest sight in the world is to see a great man struggling against adversity.
All cruelty springs from weakness.
All cruelty springs from weakness.
Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.
Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.
Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by rulers as useful.
Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by rulers as useful.
Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for a kindness.
Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for a kindness.
It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare; it is because we do not dare that things are difficult.
It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare; it is because we do not dare that things are difficult.
Difficulties strengthen the mind, as labor does the body.
Difficulties strengthen the mind, as labor does the body.
Begin at once to live, and count each separate day as a separate life.
Begin at once to live, and count each separate day as a separate life.
Throw me to the wolves and I will return leading the pack.
Throw me to the wolves and I will return leading the pack.
Ignorance is the cause of fear.
Ignorance is the cause of fear.
If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable.
If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable.
We become wiser by adversity; prosperity destroys our appreciation of the right.
We become wiser by adversity; prosperity destroys our appreciation of the right.

36 Inspirational Quotes on Happiness & Control

As for old age, embrace and love it. It abounds with pleasure if you know how to use it. The gradually declining years are among the sweetest in a man’s life, and I maintain that, even when they have reached the extreme limit, they have their pleasure still.”

Seneca
As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters.
As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters.
Nothing is more honorable than a grateful heart.
Nothing is more honorable than a grateful heart.
The good things of prosperity are to be wished; but the good things that belong to adversity are to be admired.
The good things of prosperity are to be wished; but the good things that belong to adversity are to be admired.
Silence is a lesson learned through life’s many sufferings.
Silence is a lesson learned through life’s many sufferings.
You act like mortals in all that you fear, and like immortals in all that you desire.
You act like mortals in all that you fear, and like immortals in all that you desire.
They lose the day in expectation of the night, and the night in fear of the dawn.
They lose the day in expectation of the night, and the night in fear of the dawn.
He suffers more than necessary, who suffers before it is necessary.
He suffers more than necessary, who suffers before it is necessary.
Consult your friend on all things, especially on those which respect yourself. His counsel may then be useful where your own self-love might impair your judgment.
Consult your friend on all things, especially on those which respect yourself. His counsel may then be useful where your own self-love might impair your judgment.
One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.
One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.
How does it help… to make troubles heavier by bemoaning them?
How does it help… to make troubles heavier by bemoaning them?
Hang on to your youthful enthusiasms - you’ll be able to use them better when you’re older.
Hang on to your youthful enthusiasms – you’ll be able to use them better when you’re older.
Every night before going to sleep, we must ask ourselves - what weakness did I overcome today? What virtue did I acquire?
Every night before going to sleep, we must ask ourselves – what weakness did I overcome today? What virtue did I acquire?
Associate with people who are likely to improve you.
Associate with people who are likely to improve you.
True happiness is... to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future.
True happiness is… to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future.
Wealth is the slave of the wise. The master of the fool.
Wealth is the slave of the wise. The master of the fool.
It does not matter what you bear, but how you bear it.
It does not matter what you bear, but how you bear it.
It is the power of the mind to be unconquerable.
It is the power of the mind to be unconquerable.
We learn not in the school, but in life.
We learn not in the school, but in life.
A gift consists not in what is done or given, but in the intention of the giver or doer.
A gift consists not in what is done or given, but in the intention of the giver or doer.
It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, who is poor.
It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, who is poor.
The whole future lies in uncertainty: live immediately.
The whole future lies in uncertainty: live immediately.
It is not that we have so little time but that we lose so much... The life we receive is not short but we make it so...
It is not that we have so little time but that we lose so much… The life we receive is not short but we make it so…
We are always complaining that our days are few, and acting as though there would be no end of them.
We are always complaining that our days are few, and acting as though there would be no end of them.
There is no genius without a touch of madness.
There is no genius without a touch of madness.
Anger, if not restrained, is frequently more hurtful to us than the injury that provokes it.
Anger, if not restrained, is frequently more hurtful to us than the injury that provokes it.
He is most powerful who has power over himself.
He is most powerful who has power over himself.
The man who has anticipated the coming of troubles takes away their power when they arrive.
The man who has anticipated the coming of troubles takes away their power when they arrive.
What need is there to weep over parts of life? The whole of it calls for tears.
What need is there to weep over parts of life? The whole of it calls for tears.
Life, if well lived, is long enough.
Life, if well lived, is long enough.
For many men, the acquisition of wealth does not end their troubles, it only changes them.
For many men, the acquisition of wealth does not end their troubles, it only changes them.
No man was ever wise by chance.
No man was ever wise by chance.
We should not, like sheep, follow the herd of creatures in front of us, making our way where others go, not where we ought to go.
We should not, like sheep, follow the herd of creatures in front of us, making our way where others go, not where we ought to go.
I shall never be ashamed of citing a bad author if the line is good.
I shall never be ashamed of citing a bad author if the line is good.
Man is affected not by events but by the view he takes of them.
Man is affected not by events but by the view he takes of them.
Let us say what we feel, and feel what we say; let speech harmonize with life.
Let us say what we feel, and feel what we say; let speech harmonize with life.

31 Motivational Seneca Quotes on Life

It is a rough road that leads to the heights of greatness.
It is a rough road that leads to the heights of greatness.
Health is the soul that animates all the enjoyments of life, which fade and are tasteless without it.
Health is the soul that animates all the enjoyments of life, which fade and are tasteless without it.
Time heals what reason cannot.
Time heals what reason cannot.
To bear trials with a calm mind robs misfortune of its strength and burden.
To bear trials with a calm mind robs misfortune of its strength and burden.
Life is like a play: it's not the length, but the excellence of the acting that matters.
Life is like a play: it’s not the length, but the excellence of the acting that matters.
You want to live but do you know how to live? You are scared of dying and tell me, is the kind of life you lead really any different from being dead?
You want to live but do you know how to live? You are scared of dying and tell me, is the kind of life you lead really any different from being dead?
There is nothing more despicable than an old man who has no other proof than his age to offer of his having lived long in the world.
There is nothing more despicable than an old man who has no other proof than his age to offer of his having lived long in the world.
Remember that pain has this most excellent quality. If prolonged it cannot be severe, and if severe it cannot be prolonged.
Remember that pain has this most excellent quality. If prolonged it cannot be severe, and if severe it cannot be prolonged.
No evil propensity of the human heart is so powerful that it may mot be subdued by discipline.
No evil propensity of the human heart is so powerful that it may mot be subdued by discipline.
Things that were hard to bear are sweet to remember.
Things that were hard to bear are sweet to remember. Also read: Quotes on Memories
The greatest blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach. A wise man is content with his lot, whatever it may be, without wishing for what he has not.
The greatest blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach. A wise man is content with his lot, whatever it may be, without wishing for what he has not.
I am not born for one corner; the whole world is my native land.
I am not born for one corner; the whole world is my native land. Also read: Travel Quotes
If thou art a man, admire those who attempt great things, even though they fail.
If thou art a man, admire those who attempt great things, even though they fail.
We should always allow some time to elapse, for time discloses the truth.
We should always allow some time to elapse, for time discloses the truth.
Until we have begun to go without them, we fail to realize how unnecessary many things are. We’ve been using them not because we needed them but because we had them.
Until we have begun to go without them, we fail to realize how unnecessary many things are. We’ve been using them not because we needed them but because we had them. Also read: Minimalism Quotes
A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials.
A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials.
Regard a friend as loyal, and you will make him loyal.
Regard a friend as loyal, and you will make him loyal.

In the meantime, cling tooth and nail to the following rule: not to give in to adversity, not to trust prosperity, and always take full note of fortune’s habit of behaving just as she pleases.”

Seneca
It is quality rather than quantity that matters.
It is quality rather than quantity that matters.
Our lives are either spent in doing nothing at all, or in doing nothing to the purpose, or in doing nothing that we ought to do.
Our lives are either spent in doing nothing at all, or in doing nothing to the purpose, or in doing nothing that we ought to do.
He who indulges in empty fears earns himself real fears.
He who indulges in empty fears earns himself real fears.
Life is never incomplete if it is an honorable one. At whatever point you leave life, if you leave it in the right way, it is whole.
Life is never incomplete if it is an honorable one. At whatever point you leave life, if you leave it in the right way, it is whole.
Enjoy present pleasures in such a way as not to injure future ones.
Enjoy present pleasures in such a way as not to injure future ones.
Let us train our minds to desire what the situation demands.
Let us train our minds to desire what the situation demands.
While we are postponing, life speeds by.
While we are postponing, life speeds by.
Everything that exceeds the bounds of moderation has an unstable foundation.
Everything that exceeds the bounds of moderation has an unstable foundation.
It is better to conquer our grief than to deceive it.
It is better to conquer our grief than to deceive it.
Whatever can happen at any time can happen today.
Whatever can happen at any time can happen today.
There is nothing in the world so much admired as a man who knows how to bear unhappiness with courage.
There is nothing in the world so much admired as a man who knows how to bear unhappiness with courage.
A man’s as miserable as he thinks he is.
A man’s as miserable as he thinks he is.
He that does good to another does good also to himself.
He that does good to another does good also to himself.
Of this one thing make sure against your dying day – that your faults die before you do.
Of this one thing make sure against your dying day – that your faults die before you do.

Seneca Short Biography

Born on 4 BC in Cordoba, Hispania (though raised in Rome), Lucius Annaeus Seneca aka Seneca the Younger (or simply Seneca) was a well-known Roman Stoic philosopher, statesman, orator, and tragedian.

His aunt brought him to Rome and Seneca was trained in rhetoric, literature, and philosophy at a very young age. This is as part of the standard education of ‘high-born’ Romans.

He ultimately became Rome’s leading intellectual figure in the mid-1st century and was Nero’s first tutor – later Nero’s adviser when Nero became emperor.

However, at the later stage of Nero’s reign, Seneca was forced to take his own life due to complicity in the Pisonian conspiracy to assassinate Nero that was organized by Gaius Calpurnius Piso in AD 65 (although it was unlikely that Seneca took part in the conspiracy).

Seneca’s stoic and calm suicide has become the subject of numerous paintings. His philosophical work had a tremendous influence on later generations.

Further reading:

Here are the best Seneca quotes so you can cherish time and realize that busyness is the ultimate form of distraction.

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Seneca Quotes on Love, Time, & Death (STOICISM) - Gracious Quotes

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