I recently read Thucydides on the beach and was struck by how contemporary, or perhaps just timeless, he is. Here is a thoughtful reflection in one of his reported speeches; you can love beauty of things and of the mind without going soft.
Our love of what is beautiful does not lead to extravagance; our love of the things of the mind does not make us soft.
This struck me as I’ve sometimes gathered that sensitivity towards beauty or other forms of loveliness can be interpreted as a kind of softness, if not weakness.
See also his comment on kindness.
Source: Thucydides, The Peloponnesian War, trans. by Rex Warner (Harmondsworth: Penguin Classics, 1959), p. 118
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