Get a free audiobook

How to Die

An Ancient Guide to the End of Life
Narrated by: P. J. Ochlan
Length: 2 hrs and 29 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (10 ratings)

CDN$ 14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Publisher's Summary

"It takes an entire lifetime to learn how to die", wrote the Roman Stoic philosopher Seneca (c. 4 BC-65 AD). He counseled readers to "study death always", and took his own advice, returning to the subject again and again in all his writings, yet he never treated it in a complete work. How to Die gathers in one volume, for the first time, Seneca's remarkable meditations on death and dying. Edited and translated by James S. Romm, How to Die reveals a provocative thinker and dazzling writer who speaks with a startling frankness about the need to accept death or even, under certain conditions, to seek it out.

Seneca believed that life is only a journey toward death and that one must rehearse for death throughout life. Here, he tells us how to practice for death, how to die well, and how to understand the role of a good death in a good life. He stresses the universality of death, its importance as life's final rite of passage, and its ability to liberate us from pain, slavery, or political oppression.

Featuring beautifully rendered new translations, How to Die also includes an enlightening introduction, notes, the original Latin texts, and an epilogue presenting Tacitus's description of Seneca's grim suicide.

Introduced, edited, and translated by James S. Romm

©2018 Princeton University Press (P)2018 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    4
  • 4 Stars
    5
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Performance

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    3
  • 4 Stars
    5
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    3
  • 4 Stars
    5
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Sort by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good summary of a stoic on death

Collation of Seneca's writing on death. There are some useful ideas though it does get somewhat repetitive.

Heavy focus on quality of life over length of life.

Would NOT reccomend reading during tough times in your life. Seneca heavily advocates rash choices.

Seneca was not a madman nor a supporter of Nero (despite being his teacher -- Nero was not a good learner).

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Fascinating look into a madman

A compelling look into a madman. You could literally see him walking with Nero in his gardens watching people burn alive and enjoying their pain.You can see this philosophy leads to with the thousands of corpses. Absolutely fascinating.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • kyle miller
  • 2018-11-28

The reading is somewhat flat.

His voice can be somewhat dull and boring at times, however it was still a good purchase.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Shodan
  • 2018-09-20

A solid narrative performance!

Most clear intonation, although full of nuances. A true classic, both in content and execution.