“We suffer not from the events in our lives, but from our judgement about them.” – Epictetus
Stoicism. Stoicism is an ancient Greek philosophy which teaches the development of self-control and fortitude as a means of overcoming destructive emotions. Stoicism is a philosophy of personal ethics influenced by its system of logic and its views on the natural world. It was founded by Zeno of Citium in Athens in the early 3rd century BC. The Stoics believed everything around us operates according to a web of cause and effect resulting in a rational structure of the universe known as Logos. In Stoicism, the Logos is an unknowable force. A relationship with the Logos is distant, intellectual, and based on the ideas of duty and virtue.
The stoics believed in 4 virtues. Those being wisdom, temperance, justice, and courage. Wisdom or prudence is the knowledge of what is good and evil. The knowledge that produces happiness. The nature by which we determine what is to be done and what is not to be done. Temperance or moderation is the desires and pleasures that occur naturally in the soul. It is the balance and good discipline of the soul, in consideration of normal pleasures and pains. Justice or morality is the agreement of the soul with itself and the good discipline of the parts of the soul with respect and concern to each other. Courage or fortitude is the state of the soul which is undisturbed by fear.
I love the core principles behind stoicism, I find it very fascinating. What blows my mind is that these philosophers of history still have so much influence today. Plato for example, the father of modern-day eugenics. Wild. The Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius was the most famous advocates of the ancient philosophy. He was also one of the most powerful leaders in European history. He assumed control of the Roman empire at the age of 39, during the height of its power. Meditations is a journal by Marcus Aurelius from 161 to 180 AD where he wrote his private notes to himself and ideas on stoic philosophy. Marcus Aurelius wrote the 12 books of the Meditations in koine Greek as a source for his own guidance and self-improvement.
We live in a very materialistic society. Everything is about what you have or what you can get. Also, there are very envious people in the world. I find something such as stoicism very hard to practice in modern day society, unless you are willing to give up certain things and live a minimalist life. You are also to give up any strong feelings towards ideas and use logic to analyze situations that arise. We are emotional creatures. We will always let our feelings get the best of us. That is why I do not believe very much in politics and the idea of giving so much power to selected individuals. But that in itself is a whole other episode or blog.
Seneca the Younger was also one of the most important stoic philosophers. Although some controversy does surround his stoic ways. For example, his relationship with the infamous Nero, who became one of the most tyrannical emperors in the Roman Empire, a fact that caused people to charge Seneca with hypocrisy. Seneca was Nero’s tutor and head advisor. Obviously we all know how that ended for Seneca since the rest is history. Nonetheless there are a lot of valuable lessons to be learned from Seneca. Some of those lessons being: life with purpose, find a balance, live in the moment, love yourself, live each day as if its your last, and learn to accept life’s struggles for what they are.
“We are not given a short life but we make it short, and we are not Ill-supplied but wasteful of it.” — Seneca
Practicing stoicism is very simple. There are various exercises you can do to achieve a stoic and stress-free lifestyle. I have been trying to practice stoicism in my life as of lately. One exercise in particular that I have been doing is staying off my phone while eating lunch and engaging in conversation with your partner. Sounds simple right? In today’s world I can assure you its not. We are always so hung up on our electronic devices and social media. It is a cancer to society, but people give it so much credence.
On this episode, we breakdown the philosophy of stoicism with Anderson Silver. As an author and a stoic practitioner, Anderson is on a quest to share the key lessons he has learned for a meaningful and anxiety-free life, through stoicism and stoic philosophy. We breakdown the history of stoicism, some key ancient philosophers of the practice, and how you can apply it to your every day to day life. We talk about its influences on theism as well as what differentiates it from it. It can be hard to practice stoicism in today’s society but not impossible. Hope you enjoy this episode, very interesting stuff!
On this episode, we breakdown the philosophy of stoicism with Anderson Silver. As an author and a Stoic practitioner, Anderson is on a quest to share the key lessons he has learned for a meaningful and anxiety-free life, through Stoicism and Stoic philosophy. We breakdown the history of stoicism, some key ancient philosophers of the practice, and how you can apply it to your every day to day life. We talk about its influences on theism as well as what differentiates it from it. It can be hard to practice stoicism in today’s society but not impossible. Hope you enjoy this episode, very interesting stuff!
Check out Anderson’s work at:
Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/book/show/43055103-your-user-s-manual & https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48569551-vol-2
Reddit: www.reddit.com/r/Stoicism & www.reddit.com/r/practicingstoicism
Check out our blog at www.thejuanonjuanpodcast.com
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