Make your manner of eating neither luxurious nor gloomy, but lively and frugal, that the soul may not be perturbed through being deceived by the pleasures of the body, and that that it may despise them, and that the soul may not be injured by the enjoyment of present luxury and the body may not afterward suffer from disease.
~ Epictetus (Fragments XXIX)
In the edition that I have of this work, the author has left a note that the fragment may be corrupted, and that it doesn’t make sense.
Yet, to me it makes perfect sense.
The way that I understand this, is that Epictetus is telling us to eat in a manner that is frugal and lively.
We don’t really need to be spending the average daily wage on some ingredients for the meal we are going to eat.
Nor, if we are able to afford more, should we be eating a meal of beans and rice.
How many diseases and illnesses that are diet related are we suffering from now, that could be prevented?
We are in this situation because we have changed how we view food and eating.
We no longer eat to live.
Far too many of us have chosen to live to eat.