Seneca was filthy rich. What does it say and but if a maximally privileged citizen practices asceticism? Did he come to his senses or does he just want to test the simple life for a short time in order to indulge in the advantages of his status all the more afterwards? To take a run through the dirt, so to speak, in order to then land in a feathered bed? I think asceticism is only worth anything if one cannot be aware of any social and financial safety nets. Renouncing material status for a short time, such as going camping in nature for a weekend, is certainly nowhere near an experience and growth of the self, if you want to compare this to being a naked mendicant monk, for example. But at least Seneca has a point: if one is already given the privileges, it is still better to pretend now and then that one does not have them. Sleeping on the bare floor is perhaps even more pleasant than sleeping on a pile of money, in any case more hygienic.
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