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Always be careful.

All the 147 Delphic maxims created in the 6th century BC are sensible and intended to help the person hearing them read from stone stelae or hopefully after a while learning to read them. These stone stelae were chiseled in Delphi and are now thought, at least by me, to have been sent to every city in the world known to the Greeks. It was a way to help Greek-speaking people to be part of a larger community, and to impress on them and the communities they resided within ways of behaving that would help them thrive. Also, it made possible for people the world over to learn the basics of the Greek language, and to become more moral people. The stelae are all gone now, probably because after the Greeks faded in political and religious power they were seen as a threat to local politics and culture. Fortunately, they did survive in other written forms.

#61. Always be careful. Seems like a strange suggestion to be giving to people to help them thrive. Everyone while growing to adulthood encounters enough scrapes and bruises during childhood games to learn to be careful. It seems strange then that when we travel through a public place we can easily observe people doing risky things. We can see people walking with difficulty and suffering from some form of injury. We don’t see the seriously injured because they don’t come out in public very much, and we don’t see the people killed by an unfortunate accident because they are dead and buried.

I am frequently amazed at the sloppy driving of distracted people. Such things as bouncing off of the lane markers on the left side, only a half-minute later to bounce off of the right side markers. Here in Bend, Oregon, dangerous activities are promoted, and the more dangerous the activity the more prestige is attached to performing it.

My dwelling on this subject isn’t going to change anyone’s mind, or behavior, but it makes me feel a little better that at least I put up the idea. Yes, I do know people who have died because of bike accidents, falling accidents, car accidents, gun accidents, and they weren’t stupid people.

It only takes a moment of carelessness to end your existence permanently; therefore, Always be careful is listed in the Greek 147 Golden Rules of Behavior.