The philosophy of Stoicism – Massimo Pigliucci

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What is the best life we can live? How can we cope with whatever the universe throws at us and keep thriving nonetheless? The ancient Greco-Roman philosophy of Stoicism explains that while we may not always have control over the events affecting us, we can have control over how we approach things. Massimo Pigliucci describes the philosophy of Stoicism.

Lesson by Massimo Pigliucci, animation by Compote Collective.



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  1. "With not much else to do he wandered into a book shop […] and preceded to seek out and study with the cities noted philosophers."

    Then the next scene:

    "As Zeno began educating his own students …"

    Well, that escalated educated fast.

  2. Your goal in life is to live in agreement with Nature (Physis) which is achieved by Virtue alone. This is because Virtue alone are the qualities that enable Wisdom and life's fruit (Eudaimonia). Hence make your life into an ongoing process in ethical development. Moreover, the greatest insight you can have is this: some things are within your control but most things are not. You ought to focus on the things that ae within your power and accept the rest as things that must pass.

    Addendum. In Christian thought, Jesus was Logos incarnated. The goal in life for Christians is to live in agreement with Logos and thereby become "Christ-like". The Kingdom of Heaven is not an utopian reality that will be realized by some ideology, instead the Kingdom of Heaven starts within every single human. Remember that you are not the center of the universe, but you are a center in the universe. Hence make your life into an ongoing process in ethical development. You will know what is good morals by their fruit. Like Jesus said; "Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad; for a tree is known by its fruit."

  3. I believe every person should have their own way of life and philosophy. As in the olden times people were not that educated these philosophies ruled over. I am part minimalist, part stoicist, part optimist. I am totally content about the way how I live my life. People thinking over and how they can improve themselves is the key. That would lead to a better ideal society.

  4. I desperately tried to explain the way I think to an overly emotional friend I had a fight with with no success but this video is exactly doing that. I sent him the link let's hope he can at least understand your words. thanks for all the great videos btw.

  5. I think, the example of Nelson Mandala can be used for many other …..ism things… just because he was successful in his movement does't allow you drag him into the specific philosophy of Stoicism…

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