A collection of notes on Ascetism.
One must first place oneself from the point of view of Epicurus and distinguish natural from imaginary needs. When we are able to despise in practice all that is unnecessary to life, when we will disdain luxury and comfort, when we will savor the physical pleasure that come from simple food and drink.
The wise man notes that material progress has as its object the increasing of the artificial needs of some and the labor of others. Material progress appears to him as an increasing weight, which increasingly plunges man in the mud and in suffering.
A man is wealthy in proportion to the things he can do without.
The philosopher Diogenes was eating bread and lentils for supper. He was seen by the philosopher Aristippus, who lived comfortably by flattering the king.
Said Aristippus, 'If you would learn to be subservient to the king you would not have to live on lentils.'
Said Diogenes, 'Learn to live on lentils and you will not have to be subservient to the king'