“Indeed, no one can thwart the purposes of your mind — for they can’t be touched by fire, steel, tyranny, slander, or anything.”MARCUS AURELIUS, MEDITATIONS, 8.41
For some reason, when trying to expand upon today’s quote in The Daily Stoic, the book’s author goes on a long tangent about a “mental reverse clause”. It’s an interesting concept, and I’ll let you read all about it in the book, but I’m not seeing the connection to the actual quote, so I’m going to go in a different direction here.
The point of these words above from Marcus is that your mind is unstoppable. It’s not subject to natural disasters, wars or threats of violence, rude behavior, or any of the other multitudes of mean things that humans do to each other.
Certainly, your mind could be distressed and affected by these things, but it doesn’t have to be. You have a choice. You can let someone’s cruel insult bother you — or you could let it slide off you as though it doesn’t matter at all (because it doesn’t). You can choose not to hate the haters.
Your mind is the only thing that you have full control over. So when life slings arrows at you, you at least have the option to not let it bother you at all. Easier said than done, of course — but it is possible. You can decide not to be swayed from your goals, not to lose sight of your purpose. Your mind can stay focused and driven.
Because the truth is that your mind is unstoppable by natural forces. It’s the most invincible part of you. The only thing that can stop your mind or make it deviate from its course is you, and only when you choose to.