"[I learned] from Alexander the Platonist, not to say to anyone often or without necessity, nor write in a letter, I am too busy, nor in this fashion constantly plead urgent affairs as an excuse for evading the obligations entailed upon us by our relations towards those around us."
This from an emperor of the second century, read now in a time when the most popular response to "How are you?" is "Busy!" and when Veggie-Tales' recasting of the parable of the good Samaritan makes busy-ness the excuse for not helping a stranger. I look no further for relevance, and rest assured that there is no significant gap between the humanity of Marcus Aurelius and that of our world today.