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Stoics hold that you should only value things over which you have control: your judgments, emotions & character. In an attempt to avoid pain in a world in which everything you might care about is easily lost.
Realizing that life is limited is all the more reason to value your life intensely: it requires effort, emotional investment & the risk of pain. (Someday your child may die, but that does not mean that while she’s alive you should withdraw. On the contrary, to keep yourself from loving “too much” is to keep yourself from loving). To temper emotions is to kill one’s capacity to live.
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Stoicism is made up of conflicting writings, especially around God, determinism vs free will, happiness vs avoidance of pain etc. Today most Stoic fans are practicing a cafeteria approach: picking up the few useful bits, modifying others, discarding the rest.
But it’s important to know th...
Stoics say some things are “up to us” while other sare not & that it’s crucially important to distinguish correctly between these. The problem, however, is that Stoicism (through the the writings of Zeno & Chrysippus) endorses determinism — the view that our actions and choices a...
Marcus Aureliu affirms that everything that happens is divinely ordered for the best. And given his Stoic teaching, he finds that in this best of all possible worlds there is little to love. He frequently comments on the vanity of existence, the insignificance of life, the sheer pointlessness of ...
Life-long learner. Passionate about leadership, entrepreneurship, philosophy, Buddhism & SF. Founder @deepstash.
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This exercise is the one that relies on our capacity for rationality, and is aligned with the Stoic topos of logic. Hadot describes logic as “the mastery of inner discourse.” By keeping a close watch on that inner discourse, we can see whether our logic is erroneous and thus conducive to...
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