Art of Living & Dying
Professor Oliver Ranner
March 3, 2011
Boethius, Consolation of Philosophy: 4.22-29
In this passage Philosophy wants Boethius and the reader to understand that fortune does not truly bring a person true happiness. In its realistic form, fortune is a never-ending spinning wheel that gives and takes away fortune at any moment it time. Thus, one should never confuse fortune with true happiness because true happiness cannot be taken away. According to philosophy, in its truest form pure happiness is embedded within each person (i.e. God) either detached, or attached goods of fortune is not true satisfaction because what fortune may bring to a person is not more valuable then that person itself. Since fortune is unstable and something that cannot be controlled by man, humans should realize that unlike fortune once you have known happiness there is no way one can really lose it. Thus the working of fortune should not be considered tragic when they cause reversal for her former benefactors. Fortunes gifts are really loans and to return something that way only lent to you is not a loss and not something in which one should never grieve over. In lines 22-29 there are several sentences that can be explained in order to understand philosophies issues with fortune and happiness. “You will posses a thing that you yourself would never want to lose.” Philosophy wants Boethius to realize that unlike the will of fortune we has being have something that we can never lose to fortune and that is our soul (God). You can lose all the material things in the world but you will never lose what makes you who you are. In contrast, you should never let things consume you so much, that when it is lost you neglect the mere thing that will always be there for you no matter what. Philosophy wants Boethius to see that his vision and perception as been so shaded by material goods (fortunes goodness) that he fails to see that within himself there is...