Far better people than you have died

Sententiae Antiquae, an online commonplace book, translates Lucretius, De Rerum Natura:

Add as well the friends of the Muses whose single Homer,
the sceptered lord, has been quieted in sleep like the rest.
Democritus, too, when advanced age finally warned him
That the moving memories of his mind were fading,
He freely offered his own head to his end.
Epicurus as well departed when the light of his life ran its course,
He surpassed the race of man with his genius, who overshown
The light of all men the way the sun washes out the stars—
And now you will hesitate and be angry to die?

The translator writes: “It is a given that everyone dies, true, but however unimpressive I am, it still seems absurd at all to exist rather than not exist. To close the circle by ending it seems, even if appropriate, equally absurd.”

A friend of mine has joked that the proof of Christianity lies in its absurdity. Another way to say that might be that the proof of Christianity lies in life’s absurdity without Christ.

The triumphs, the glories, the tragedies, the grief—what cause do we have for any of it?

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