How to be august in August using three quotes of Caesar are some thoughts on how to be great, magnificent (one meaning of the word august) during the new month of August which is upon us.
I want to start this month off with alot more optimism than is currently circulating in the world.
In fact, it was the politics of fear about August and the looming stock plunge of the wall street and the failures of the world to protect the innocent and the rampant scare tactics from all sides of the aisle that made me want to think of some positive ideas for August.
Sitting in the paralysis of more dire warnings will not help.
There is little I can do as a citizen other than the most important thing which is do my best to stay healthy and weather the storm that is brewing.
Last night, while I was getting way too little sleep, I was thinking about the new month which will be here in just two days.
I was wondering if the word month was related to the word moon.
I know that in the Biblical language of Hebrew, the word ‘month’ and the word ‘new’ have the same etymological root.
So, I checked it out today, and sure enough the words moon and month come from the latin word mensis, which I am sure now you recognize in many english words like menses, moon, month, menstural, basically monthly occurences.
Clearly, all the way back in ancient times, people looked to the month as a time of renewal.
Just as the moon renews so to speak every month, by first disappearing, and then reappearing in a regular cycle (the lunar cycle, the lunar calendar), so too each month can be considered a time of renewal.
I was also curious about the roots of the months in general and the coming month of August.
How many of us are aware of the meanings of the month?
To my surprise, I learned that August was named after Augustus Caesar in 8 B.C.
At that time The earliest Latin calendar was a 10-month one, beginning with March; thus, September was the seventh month, October, the eighth, etc. July was originally called Quintilis, meaning fifth; August was originally called Sextilis, meaning sixth.
“I found Rome of clay; I leave it to you of marble”
– Augustus Caesar on his deathbed, as mentioned in Cassius Dio 56.30.3.
We all have properties of the earth so to speak, properties of clay, and we all have the potential to transform into something more resplendent like marble.
Take one habit that you have now which you have been struggling to overcome, whether it be for a year or thirty years, and yea, we all have them, at least one, and for this entire month of August, turn it into marble, transform it, think of how accomplished you will feel when at the end of August, you have replaced it with marble, when you have turned the raw clay into something alot more useful and admirable.
I am going to be working on one, I have written about it here before, but will just keep it under wraps for the meantime and hopefully at the end of August, will have some good news to share.
Yes, this habit has been going on for decades.
I am also going to select the pushup challenge as my other goal for August, because it does not have to be just about a bad habit, it can also be about specific improvements that we want or need to make.
“Make haste slowly”
The source is – Suetonius Div Aug 25
I think the point here is to be patient.
None of us are going to lose the thirty pounds that we want to lose, stop smoking, stop complaining or gain 10 pounds of muscle overnight, we have to be patient.
So it is great counsel to make haste slowly, get to where you want to be by being patient.
Augustus Caesar knew how to manage his empire, so well that it lasted for one and a half millenium, we can commit, at least just for this month to do the same for our own domain, for our own empire so to speak, for what we control, which is essentially to rule over ourselves.
And if we can hold on to the first two approaches of tranformation with patience, then at the end of August will be the time to celebrate, just in time for Labor Day.
As Augustus Ceasar said in his dying speech:
“If I have played my part well, clap your hands, and dismiss me with applause from the stage.”
– Suetonius Div Aug 99 Augustus’ dying speech.
We should celebrate our victories, no matter how small they might be.
We should focus on what we have accomplished and not on what we still have to do, at least to acknowledge that we are making good progress.
So, it would be really great is you can join in for this month of renewal, transformation and patience, share what your goals are for this month and I hope we can all motivate each other on and celebrate at the end of the month with our successes.
What do you think?
Are you in?