Robert Crowe wrote:
There is a remarkable contradiction here with the Hindu ideal, where doing nothing is promoted as a way of attaining nirvana. “When we are doing something, we are only ever doing one thing; but when we’re doing nothing, we are doing absolutely nothing.”
In a slightly different context, I think of Cicero’s claim that he’s always felt he should be engaged in some megotium or else in some “honorable” form of otium (I think that’s the opening of De Oratore) “Leisure” is too easily associated with “laziness” or moral weakness, “idleness” — “the devil’s workshop.” The final stanza of Catullus’ recreation of Sappho’s grand litany of erotic envy sermonizes about the same “devil’s workshop” otium, μηδὲν ἐργάζεσθαι:Catullus 5 wrote:otium, Catulle, tibi molestumest;
olio exsultas nimiumque gestis.
otium reges pries et beatas
That’s impossible to do justice to; it’s something like, “Your problem, Catullus, is having nothing to do; you’re overindulging, bloated on idleness; having nothing to do has been the ruination of monarchs and civilizations.”
If Standard Average European (SAE) was a reference to a Kulturbund rather than a Sprachbund, we would be able see quite clearly at least from the above statements that Ancient India was not part of the region.
The area covered by the Roman Empire politically, and the area influenced by Roman culture continues to foster the values of Roman society and civilisation, and those value seem familiar to us. In other words, it seems that the authour if 2 Thessalonians was working with a recognised sentiment, rather than introducing a wholly novel concept.
Statistics: Posted by Stephen Hughes — August 16th, 2016, 12:30 am