Candle

“…and when anything needs doing it ought not to be left undone, whether it be day or night. There are occasions when a householder should rise while it is still night; for this helps to make a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.” Aristotle, Economics

I wonder what occasions Aristotle had in mind.

A need to attend to some seasonal work of the household, or some repair that otherwise simply will not get done?

Staying up with an ailing child; and perhaps not administering a drug with dubious side effects?

Or getting up very early most days of the week, just to hold a job needed to support the family?

Maybe rising before others to set aside the time one needs for silence, reflection, and prayer?

Today I completed a two day visit to a Trappist monastery, where men rise at 3 AM, while it is still night. Every single day of their lives. This makes me ponder again, just what is health, wealth, and wisdom. And for what am I willing to rise, while it is still night.

Aristotle (384-322 B.C.), student of Plato, tutor of Alexander the Great, has been considered by many to be the greatest ancient philosopher. The work cited, ‘Economics,’ is attributed to him, but might have been authored by his students.

Originally posted at Bacon from Acorns

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John A. Cuddeback is a professor and chairman of the Philosophy Department at Christendom College in Front Royal, Virginia, where he has taught since 1995. He received a Ph.D. in Philosophy from The Catholic University of America under the direction of F. Russell Hittinger. He has lectured on various topics including virtue, culture, natural law, friendship, and household. His book Friendship: The Art of Happiness was republished in 2010 as True Friendship: Where Virtue Becomes Happiness. His writings have appeared in Nova et Vetera, The Thomist, and The Review of Metaphysics, as well as in several volumes published by the American Maritain Association. Though raised in what he calls an ‘archetypical suburb,’ Columbia, Maryland, he and his wife Sofia consider themselves blessed to be raising their six children in the shadow of the Blue Ridge on the banks of the Shenandoah. At the material center of their homesteading projects are heritage breed pigs, which like the pigs of Eumaeus are fattened on acorns, yielding a bacon that too few people ever enjoy. His website dedicated to the philosophy of family and household is baconfromacorns.com.