Getting Your Mind Right (Podcast)

Are you holding yourself accountable every day by living a good life, a productive life?  Are your actions congruent with your words? We talk about that slime bag mentality, how it holds you back, and how those little voices in your head can lead you down the path of vices.  There are no shortcuts, no days off, no letups.  You need to be putting in work, and not retreating one inch.  Ever.

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The Tomb Of The Scipios

When one considers the veneration that the ancient Romans had for their ancestors, it seems incredible that the tomb of the Scipios—one of the city’s most illustrious families—should be shrouded in such neglect and mystery.  And yet this is precisely the case.  One senses that the family and the city endured a bitter divorce, from which each emerged with an implacable hostility to the other; Rome never forgave the family’s recalcitrance, and punished it with a sullen historical silence.

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A Terrible Storm Destroys Octavian’s Fleet

In the modern era we tend to minimize or downplay the influence of weather and geography on human activity.  In earlier periods of history, armies and fleets had a much more intimate relation with the inconstancy of the natural world.  Ancient man could not insulate himself from the ocean’s surges, the sky’s furies, or the impediments of geography; and perhaps for this reason our ancestors had a healthier respect for Nature’s capabilities.

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How Art Can Inspire Great Deeds

In this podcast, I talk about the documentary film Sad Hill Unearthed, and what conclusions we should draw from it. The movie describes how four friends found and restored the cemetery in Spain used for the iconic climax of the 1965 Sergio Leone film The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly.  We discuss how art can work to nurture dreams, and why you should follow your visions, no matter what other people may think.

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"Digest" Is Now Available

Digest is available in paperback, hardcover, and Kindle editions.  This comprehensive (713 pages), annotated, illustrated, and fully indexed collection includes all of Quintus Curtius’s important essays from 2016 to January 2020.  Some of the essays have been expanded.  The range of topics is diverse and compelling, and includes history, moral and ethical philosophy, travel and exploration, language, and the wisdom of the Near East. These penetrating and inspiring writings provide a window into a philosophy of life based on a belief in achievement through struggle, the redemptive power of wisdom, the value of moral goodness, and the necessity of direct personal experience.

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Greed Is Always Their Undoing

In the first book of the Panchatantra (the classic Sanskrit collection of moral fables), the writer, Vishnu Sarma, mentions “five evils” that can befall an individual or a state:  absence or dearth; rebellion; addiction; calamities; and tactical inversions.  Each of these is explained in the following way.

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