The Stoic Magazine Library
Select an Issue
Showing Articles from the category
Stoicism speaks of flourishing as an ideal. Many ask, “flourishing sounds great, but how do you do it?” By these itty-bitty shifts in attention. That’s it.
An important part of Stoicism is developing moment-to-moment awareness that allows you to take a step back, look at the situation objectively, analyze your impressions, and proceed with what’s constructive.
An Interview with Leo Konstantakos
We all have moments when we need to tame our mind. Perhaps you feel yourself starting to become angry, or anxious, or just overwhelmed by everything you have to do.
When I share with people outside the Stoic community that I use Stoic philosophy as a guide, I usually hear a couple of specific questions. Aside from “What’s Stoicism?” the most common question is prefaced by furrowed eyebrows, followed by, “Isn’t that all about having no emotions?”
It’s no mistake – it’s supposed to be 80/120. It’s a deliberate play on the 80/20 rule, so please, don’t confuse it. Today I take a different angle. I want to show how the Stoic principles translate into patterns of daily life.
In this extract, Elbert Hubbard chronicles how Marcus Aurelius and Faustina, the Younger developed affection for – and eventually marry – each other.
Marcus, as a serious young man
“Writing was a spiritual exercise, a way of memorizing and internalizing the teachings so that they become a person’s default moral setting. It was a kind of paying-attention, an active, creative listening to others and to the self.”
“On the one hand we have the crowning heights of sagehood, on the other there are the daily doldrums of the work of selfimprovement. ”
“I stop and remind myself daily that I have a singular shot at this life – both as a lover of knowledge, and as a human who dances, sings, and enjoys celebrating at the festival.”
The unfortunate thing about desires is that they’re more like fast-spreading ivy than pretty potted plants: they tend to get out of control very quickly.
Stoicism isn’t just about learning how to live but about learning how to die. It is about knowing how to make the right decisions for everyone considered; knowing what to stand up for, and what to risk our popularity, safety, and lives for.
Understand what is precious
Your loved ones? The woman or man you love? Your kids? Your dog? Your time? The time you can spend with those loved ones? Your life? Being alive to enjoy the whole myster y of life?
“Stillness is not a means to deny, submerge, or otherwise repudiate the self. It is simply through the wisdom of stillness we see that the self or the soul is healthiest and happiest when it is pointed outward rather than inward.”