The Four Elements that Make Life

The following is a quote from Epictetus, discovered within the book Illuminations: Wisdom from this Planet's Greatest Minds regarding the relationship between the body, heart and soul: 

"It takes more than just a body that looks good. You must have the heart and soul to go with it." 

Within Illuminations, this quote from Epictetus is followed by a brief passage, which in my opinion, provides an excellent explanation of the relationship that exists between the body, heart, mind and soul:

"A body is made stronger with exertion and effort. A mind is made stronger with learning and wisdom. A heart is made stronger with empathy and generosity. A soul is made stronger with a purpose and integrity. These are the core pieces of a human - the four elements that make life. 

One is no more important than another. If you improve your body but not your mind, you have strength but not the intelligence to use it. If you improve your heart but not your mind, you will be loved but cheated by deceivers. If you improve your mind but not your soul, you will gain all the rewards of wealth and power but find them to be meaningless. Care for your body, your mind, your heart, and your soul, and they will return your efforts in excess."

It is often said that one should strive for moderation and balance in all things. The preceding is a good example of the balance that should be aspired to within our own personal selves as well as within our daily lives.



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