The Stoic Life. Emotions, duties and fate by Tad Brennan

By Tad Brennan

Tad Brennan explains find out how to dwell the Stoic life--and why we would are looking to. Stoicism has been one of many major currents of proposal in Western civilization for 2 thousand years: Brennan deals a desirable advisor in the course of the moral rules of the unique Stoic philosophers, and exhibits how beneficial those rules stay at the present time, either intellectually and in perform. He writes in a full of life casual kind that allows you to convey Stoicism to lifestyles for readers who're new to historical philosophy. The Stoic Life can also be of significant curiosity to philosophers and classicists looking a whole realizing of the highbrow legacy of the Stoics.

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2 Man, your mind cannot be hindered, cannot be compelled—that is its nature. I’ll demonstrate this to you, Wrst in the case of assent. Can anyone hinder you from assenting to what is true? Can anyone compel you to accept what is false? 3 We all know roughly what it means to assent to something—it means to agree with it, or go along with it, or endorse it. And that is also roughly what the Stoics had in mind when they introduced the term sunkatathesis—which is what makes ‘assent’ a tolerable translation for sunkatathesis.

Oldfather (1925) in his introduction describes the immense popularity of Epictetus with, among others, Frederick the Great of Prussia! Stockdale (1993) gives a good sense of the Invictus reading of Stoicism; I disagree with the scholarship, but the story of Stockdale’s experiences as a POW cannot fail to arouse the reader’s interest and admiration. An up-to-date and authoritative discussion of the history of the school and its leading Wgures can be found in the two chapters by Sedley (2003) and Gill (2003).

To begin with, ancient ethics tend to orient themselves around the question of what sort of life an individual should live. Nowadays, we tend to think that the Wrst and central job of an ethical theory is to give us principles for judging the rightness and wrongness of actions, or for deciding, when faced with a complicated and ethically fraught situation, what the ethically correct thing to do is. We imagine scenarios in which the rights of one person are put into conXict with the interests of another, or in which the preservation of some people’s lives will preclude the preservation of others, and we think of it as the main job of an ethical theory to show us the way out of the dilemma.

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