The Importance of Stoicism
September 30, 2012
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In the Huffington Post. (There are three or so paragraphs under each bullet point.)
We aren’t claiming that the president’s a secret Stoic. But we do think that the public response to his self-control shows how poorly Stoic qualities can go over in our times: a philosophy built on emotional control seems strange in the age of over-sharing. We think that’s a shame. Stoicism still has a tremendous amount to teach us, especially in these passion-saturated times. What’s more, the Stoic legacy has shaped our world in more ways than you might expect. Here are five reasons why Stoicism matters:
- It was built for hard times.
- Stoicism is made for globalization.
- If you’re Christian, you’re already part-Stoic.
- It’s the unofficial philosophy of the military.
- It’s a philosophy for leadership.
The Stoics taught that we fail far more often than we succeed, that to be human is to be fearful, selfish, and angry far more often than we’d like. But they also taught a realistic way to be more. The more we practice Stoic qualities in good times, the more likely that we’ll find them in ourselves when they’re most needed.