The studies which he delivered to his associates, were as follows; for those who committed themselves to the guidance of his doctrine acted thus. They took solitary morning walks to places which happened to be appropriately quiet, to temples or groves, or other suitable places. They thought it inadvisable to converse with anyone until they had gained inner serenity, focusing their reasoning powers; they considered it turbulent to mingle in a crowd as soon as they rose from bed; and that is the reason why these Pythagoreans always selected the most sacred spots to walk. After their morning walk they associated with each other, especially in temples, or, if this was not possible, in similar places. This time was employed in the discussion of disciplines and doctrines, and in the correction of manners.
(Chapter XX) After an association so holy, they turned their attention to the health of the body. Most of them were rubbed down, and raced; fewer wrestled, in gardens or groves; others in leaping with leaden weights on their hands, or in oratorical gesticulations, with a view to the strengthening of the body, studiously selecting for this purpose opposite exercises. They lunched on bread and honey, or on the honey-comb, avoiding wine. Afterwards, they held receptions to guests and strangers, conformably to the mandates of the laws, which was restricted to this time of day.
In the afternoon, they once more betook themselves to walking, yet not alone, as in the morning walk, but in parties of two or three, rehearsing the disciplines they had learned, and, exercising themselves in attractive studies. After the walk, they patronized the bath; and after whose ablution they gathered in the common dining-room, which accommodated no more than a group of ten. Then were performed libations and sacrifices with fumigations and incense. Then followed supper, which closed before the setting of the sun. They ate herbs, raw and boiled, maize, wine, and every food eatable with bread. Of any animals lawful to immolate, they ate the flesh, but they rarely partook of fish, which was not useful to them for certain causes animals not naturally noxious were, neither to be injured, nor slain. This supper was followed by libations, succeeded by readings. The youngest read what the eldest advised, and as they suggested.
When they were about to depart, the cupbearer poured out a libation for them, after which the eldest would announce precepts, such as the following: That a mild and fruitful plant should neither be injured nor corrupted, nor any harmless animal. Further, that we should speak piously, and form suitable conceptions of divine, tutelary and heroic beings, and similarly of parents and benefactors. Also, that we should aid, and not obstruct the enforcement of laws. Whereafter, all separated, to go home. They wore a white garment, that was pure. They also lay on white and pure beds, the coverlets of which, were made of linen, not wool. They did not hunt, not undertake any similar exercise. Such were the precepts daily delivered to the disciples of Pythagoras, in respect to eating and living.