Many of us are interested in philosophy and self-improvement not to become wise, but for the reputation of being wise. Epictetus saw that this pattern of behavior is very counter-productive if one wishes to acquire true wisdom.
“If you want to make progress, put up with being perceived as ignorant or naive in worldly matters, don’t aspire to a reputation for sagacity. If you do impress others as somebody, don’t altogether believe it. You have to realize, it isn’t easy to keep your will in agreement with nature, as well as externals. Caring about the one inevitably means you are going to shortchange the other.”
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