"Keep constant guard over your perceptions, for it is no small thing you are protecting, but your respect, trustworthiness and steadiness, peace of mind, freedom from pain and fear, in a word your freedom. For what would you sell these things?" ~ Epictetus, Discourses
This quote from Epictetus, one of the great stoic philosophers, has been on my mind lately. He seems to be pointing at more than the old adage "Think before your speak". How you see the world informs every ounce of your being. If you allow your perceptions to be co-opted, infiltrated, or swayed by an external force, then you are releasing your ability to be authentically YOU.
In a time when lies are gushing out of the white house and the country seems ever more divided, I am taking special care to guard my perceptions. We are all in this together and I need to remember that none of us lives in a vacuum. This week, I'm focusing on recognizing divinity in others. I am raising up the good and clear and true in my own community. And I'm also focusing on protecting my peace of mind.