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Stoicism

Table of contents

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Stoicism is an ancient Greek philosophy which is currently gaining popularity again, as it seems like a good framework for dealing with our apparently fucked up world.

This TEDx video makes for a good 20 minute introduction: Stoicism as a philosophy for an ordinary life | Massimo Pigliucci | TEDxAthens

Ideas

The Four Cardinal Virtues

These Cardinal Virtues have been around since before Stoicism and derive initially from Plato.

(Practical) Wisdom

This wisdom, as I understand it, is the knowledge required to make good decisions and reasonable actions. Like for example how to react to an external stimulus, or to events that lie outside of our control.

Courage

I’m not sure; I think it’s mainly the courage we all know as such? That and the courage to “resist the status quo and coming to one’s own judgement”. Kind of a selfless courage, if you will.

Justice

Temperance

This virtue is about doing less, but better. To cut out what’s unnecessary to gain more time and tranquillity. Not doing to little though is also important. It’s about finding the “golden mean”.

Dichotomy of Control

The very basic idea is that there are certain things we have control over, and other things that we cannot influence.

Epictetus in Enchiridion 1.1:

Some things are within our power, while others are not. Within our power are opinion, motivation, desire, aversion, and, in a word, whatever is of our own doing; not within our power are our body, our property, reputation, office, and, in a word, whatever is not of our own doing.

Resources

Hypertext

Audio