In one of the most famous passages of The Meditations, the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius writes that everything physical is as transient as a stream rushing past us, everything belonging to the mind is as insubstantial as vapour and deceptive as smoke or mist, and that… …life is warfare, and a sojourn in foreign land. —… Continue reading Marcus Aurelius and the Military Metaphor in Stoicism
Tim Ferriss recently brought out his own edition of the letters of Seneca, called The Tao of Seneca, which includes an interview I did about Stoicism. He also included Stoicism and the Art of Happiness in his recommended reading list: Donald Robertson’s book [Stoicism and the Art of Happiness] was highly recommended by the Stoic… Continue reading Tim Ferriss on Stoicism and the Art of Happiness
I’ve just read the op ed Why Is Silicon Valley So Obsessed With the Virtue of Suffering? by Nellie Bowles in The New York Times. This won’t be a long response. The essence of her argument appears to be that Stoicism advocates self-inflicted suffering and that Silicon Valley entrepreneurs are obsessed with it for that… Continue reading Response: Why is Silicon Valley so Obsessed With the Virtue of Suffering?
My new book about Stoicism comes out soon so I thought I’d say a bit about the process of writing it. (Sometimes people ask me how I ended up writing these books or what the process is like.) The book’s called How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius. You can… Continue reading Writing “How to Think Like a Roman Emperor”
Diogenes Laertius several times mentions a mysterious unnamed old woman associated with Chrysippus, the third head of the Stoic school. Of Chrysippus the old woman who sat beside him used to say, according to Diocles, that he wrote 500 lines a day. The Greek could also mean that the old woman attended to or looked… Continue reading Lady Stoics #4: Chrysippus’ Mysterious Old Woman
I arrived in Athens last night so this morning I decided to head straight for the Stoa Poikile, the home of Stoicism. A Greek stoa is a colonnade: basically a row of columns supporting a roof. The Stoa Poikile had a wall on one side giving shade, so it’s described as a portico or a… Continue reading Athens Day One: The Stoa Poikile
People have been telling me to read Antifragile: Things that Gain From Disorder (2014) by Nassim Taleb since the book came out because he’s into Stoicism. I’ve finally had a chance to read it so here’s my latest quasi-review. I say that because rather than talk about the whole book I’m just going to write a… Continue reading Stoic Book Review: Antifragile by Nassim Taleb
You can now sign up for my new email course on the Stoic Handbook of Epictetus. You’ll receive one email per week for a year. The Handbook is divided into 53 passages so each email contains one passage with my commentary underneath. So the entire course lasts about one year. Just enter your email below… Continue reading Sign up for my free email course on Epictetus