Hope for the Future

by Luke Muehlhauser on October 24, 2009 in Quotes

roman_tombstone

In ancient Rome, polytheistic and superstitious to the core, one tombstone epitaph longed to share some wisdom with the people passing by:

Do not pass by my epitaph, traveler.
But having stopped, listen and learn, then go your way.
There is no boat in Hades, no ferryman Charon
No caretaker Aiakos, no dog Cerberus.
All we who are dead below
Have become bones and ashes, but nothing else.
I have spoken to you honestly, go on, traveler,
Lest even while dead I seem babbling to you.1

This ancient Roman gently nudged against the superstitions of the time, but if anything supernatural beliefs only became more popular during the Middle Ages. Will religion still haunt our choices in another two thousand years?

This blog is my own small contribution to hope for the future.

  1. Quoted from The Corinthian Body by Dale Martin, page 109. []

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Rich October 24, 2009 at 5:53 pm

People who equate nihilism with atheism should consider, we’re vested in humanity and want the best for it. Moreover, we are only concerned with the living, not empty promises.

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TK October 25, 2009 at 10:31 pm

What’s the source for this quote?

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lukeprog October 26, 2009 at 8:31 pm

TK,

See the footnote.

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J. Alves October 27, 2009 at 7:38 am

Is that a picture of the original tombstone with the quote or is it just some random one for decoration? It’s quite illegible in this picture, so I can’t tell.

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lukeprog October 27, 2009 at 11:24 am

No, that’s just some random tombstone. :)

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nick March 24, 2010 at 9:08 am

don’t you think that if there is a supernatural power it would commit the knowledge of its existence completely unknown to us? perhaps us doubting it is by design…i’d like to hear more about your theories though

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Scott McCulloch November 26, 2011 at 4:30 am

Thanks – I’ve been looking for more of these!

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