Wisdom and Virtue. The Stoic principles.

Photo by Sebastian Voortman on Pexels.com

In last Tuesday’s post, Stoic philosophers believed that living life according to nature is a way to achieve happiness. The full post is on this link https://maylynno.wordpress.com/2021/10/12/living-life-according-to-nature-the-stoic-principles/

Stoic philosophers transformed philosophy into a praxis, a practical discipline of daily life. If nature is bigger and stronger than all of us and if its actions aim to survival in a rational way, then wisdom is to live according to nature.

Therefore, wisdom is the root virtue without which one can not be ethical nor a philosopher. Even success and real power can’t be achieved without wisdom. Think about Marcus Aurelius who was a Stoic philosopher and one of the greatest emperors of the Roman Empire.

What is virtue? Virtue is a life led according to nature.

Living life according to nature. The Stoic principles.

Photo by Diego Madrigal on Pexels.com

Stoicism is a school of philosophy founded by Zeno of Citium in Athens in the early 3rd century BC. It is a philosophy of personal ethics informed by its system of logic and its views on the natural world. According to its teachings, as social beings, the path to eudaimonia (happiness, or blessedness) is found in accepting the moment as it presents itself, by not allowing oneself to be controlled by the desire for pleasure or by the fear of pain, by using one’s mind to understand the world and to do one’s part in nature’s plan, and by working together and treating others fairly and justly.

Nature (understood also as the universe) is rational and deterministic whose actions aim for survival. The universe is governed by the law of reason. There is no hazardous phenomenon in the natural world nor intention. Everything natural happens for a reason.

Humans are part of the big nature; thus the importance to live according to its plan. Otherwise, human actions can provoke a disequilibrium as it is the case today with climate change, endangered species, floods and storms which are all lethal to humanity. If money is the goal, then nature is overexploited. Since nature is rational and tends to harmony, not to forget that it is much stronger than people.

One day, human actions can wipe out all existence. According to Stoic, this is the peek of human foolishness.

In and out of yoga

Photo by Marta Wave on Pexels.com

It is said that the relationship with the mat is the same like the relationship to life. Some days we love life and some others, a lot less. So, it is not strange to be in and out of yoga, and I mean by yoga here is the physical yoga or asanas.

I have much respect to disciplined yoga students with daily practice. But I am not disciplined and this attitude of mine made me wonder and ask questions here and there. As a skeptic myself, I thought something was wrong with me. However I came into a deep realization.

Yoga is not only a workout as it has been marketed on social media as I have written about it on a previous post The IG Yoga. Yoga is made of my many paths to enlightment and Hatha yoga or asanas is one of them.

Looking closely at my behaviour, I noticed that yoga makes one connected to the universe. When my connectivity to the universe weakens due to daily life hassles, I feel it in my body which makes me unroll my mat and practice.

What is the difference between innovation and creativity?

The terms “creativity” and “innovation” are frequently used interchangeably. While there is some overlap between them, they are distinct. It’s critical to comprehend and implement this distinction in your innovation strategy. The act of inventing something new, whether it’s a variant on a theme or something entirely new, is known as creativity. The act of […]

What is the difference between innovation and creativity?

Self compassion is not compatible with perfection.

The individualistic competitive world today forced us to be ambitious, sometimes ruthless and over demanding with ourselves. Everyone wants the perfect life, the perfect job, the perfect family, the perfect house, the perfect body… It is a vicious circle of compulsions.

This mindset couldn’t be further than the truth. Perfection is an advertised ideal concept to keep people busy face down; while progress is realistic and compassionate.

Global politics and capitalistic ideology promote perfection because it makes people narrow minded and enslaved. Not a better way to pay taxes and keep away from troubles.

However this illusion is a source of deadly stress, depression, low self esteem and resentment.

Is it strange that everybody is miserable?

Lessons from Taoism: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Times

It was at a university book sale where I was first introduced to the ideas of Taoism. Hidden away deep in the philosophy section, I picked up what initially seemed like a strange esoteric book – the Tao Te Ching. It was a short text, under 100 pages, that was filled with often puzzling language […]

Lessons from Taoism: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Times

Self knowledge and happiness

Traditionally speaking, from ancient Greeks and yogis to religions and philosophy, happiness was thought of as a result of self knowledge or knowing oneself. The idea behind it is that happiness doesn’t resonate with ignorance.

As much as this concept of happiness still on today, as much as it is not complete. For the German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer, “Ignorance is a blessing”. So, knowledge doesn’t bring happiness; in fact it can bring sadness and despair.

Imagine one would find out about a deep forgotten childhood trauma? Imagine knowing a dark family secret? Imagine knowing the eventual death date? Imagine a clear self knowledge without any good luck in actions?

Happiness is not about self knowledge but about an attitude or a will to be happy; that’s fifty percent of the deal. The other fifty percent are left to luck.

The unprecedented desire for routines

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

It is understandable that, in shaky situations, one would like to stick to a routine, any routine, for the sense of security and survival. This is why social media is full of videos, podcasts and posts on routines and practices and this tendency skyrocketed since the beginning of the pandemic.

However is it beneficial?

Neurologists explain that the brain functions in patterns. Once an activity becomes regular, the brain takes it as a pattern and forces the person to do it regularly. Hence the feeling of guilt or confusion in missing the regular habit.

Does it mean that we all must be doing yoga, meditation, daily workouts, journaling, drinking lemon water every morning etc.?

Although the above-mentioned practices are beneficial and recommended, it doesn’t mean every person should be doing them. Maybe one hates journaling, must they force themselves to do it? Maybe one feels uncomfortable with yoga or something else, should they do it in spite of it all?

The answer is no. A routine is a personal (sometimes collective) chosen activity for security, pleasure, health etc. or for any enhancement that leads to a better survival.

The problem when something so private becomes a mainstream on social media, it is highly misunderstood or unproperly applied.

P.S: Starting the 1st of July and for every Saturday of the month, I will publish free philosophy teaching documents. You can find them on my main blog page in “Portfolio”.