Vatican Saying 11

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Most men are in a coma when they rest, and mad when they act.


A scathing critique of common human behavior: most people tend to alternately sleepwalk or rage through life. Unable to apply the Epicurean wisdom of temperance and moderation, they either fall into mindless numbness, or frantic hyperactivity.

A plausible echo of this remark may be Lucretius' account of restless Roman patricians, bored in the city, racing to their country estates, only to find themselves equally bored there. Otherwise this is a rather odd, singular expression within the context of Epicurean doctrine, and may have originated with some other author.

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