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Let It Go

We live in times when having ‘stuff’ has become a most important thing. Consumerism is God, and those that have the most ‘stuff’ are the winners. Or are that, really? I don’t believe so.

When you have more than you need, you must deal with it the excess, whether by investing it, stashing it somewhere safe, finding ways to use it before it goes ‘off’, or whatever. The extra ‘stuff’ becomes a burden.

But when you have just the correct amount of things, you use them when they are fresh and at their best, and you aren’t required to spend time doing whatever that extra ‘stuff’ requires of you. A little money saved, just in case is good, a mega load of money because it makes you feel important, not so good.

Extra things need storage space, and looking after, and sometimes these things mean you have no time left to enjoy the things that bring you pleasure. One of those things might be books, or a record collection. Having lots of these things, that you regularly read or listen to, these are good things to have.

If you share your wealth of books or music, what joy there can be in such sharing! A personal library for only one person, a sadder thing, surely than a personal library shared and talked about, listened to with friends. Share what you have, if you can’t give it away, and live a worthy life!

And of course, money to buy these things is a good thing, if they are what brings you pleasure. If having them doesn’t do that for you, then why have them, let them go!

Of course, whether or not you wish to live a stoic life is up to each person. If living the minimalist life of a Stoic is not for you, then fine. We are each able to find the way to live that suits us.

But whether Stoic or not, please think on what you have in your life, what brings you joy, what you can do, if you have much, to assist others who have little. But more than that, and more importantly, give to what can make a better world for more than just one person.

Give to a charity that works to lift people up, so they no longer need rely on charity. Give to charity than enriches the world in good and worthy ways. It is better to give more to help a charity that helps homeless people, so they are no longer homeless, than it is to give to one homeless person, so they can eat one meal.

When you can give away your excess things, you will feel better, lighter, less burdened. Let it go and lighten your load.

In Silence Is Wisdom

A life lived without thought, is that living, or merely existing?

Do you make decisions or does life get in the way and make them for you?

When we are able to step away from the constant “must do this” aspects of life, we can move into the truth of what is imperative in our life. Being able to sit and contemplate is one of the imperatives in the lives of all, surely?

A life ‘lived’ as a rush from one thing to the next, to the next, that is not living a life, it is merely reacting to every little thing that pops up, with little to no considered thought.

If instead you can look at what has popped up, thought about the relative benefits or costs of it, and then take a well considered decision of the best reaction, in terms of doing the thing that truly is the ‘best’ thing, in terms of the thing that leads to a greater good, then and only then, you are living a good life.

And making these kinds of decisions can become difficult, when the noise of life drowns out any chance of properly thinking … If you don’t have time for considered thought, have you ever investigated why that is? Could it be that you are filling your life with glittery nothings?

The silence contains all of the answers you need in life. Sit, thing, ponder, wonder, consider options, weigh the answers, and find the best one.

The spider thinks first, then acts

Thoughts on things

“Love and hate can’t exist together, I don’t think … True love has respect in it too, I think, whereas hate and respect can’t coincide.”

I’ve just a few minutes ago posted the words above on the Facebook page of a person I know, and I feel the words are worthy of a deeper conversation than may occur on Facebook. These kinds of things on that platform can sometimes get sidetracked and become ugly and stupid, rather than uplifting and stoic.

So, I am hoping other people will think on the words above, and offer any thoughts they may have about the truth, or otherwise of what I wrote. It’s a posted as if a quotation, but the words are my own, not anyone else’s. I am not a person with degrees and so on, but I am a person who thinks about things.

These thoughts began with a conversation on Facebook, as mentioned, and there has not been much response to it beyond a ‘like’ from someone I don’t know. I’ll keep an eye on that post there on Facebook, and hope there may be some kind of discussion here.

So if you have any thoughts about this, please leave a comment, I need input from others to see whether this is an important issue worth further thought.

Being Moral in an Immoral World

When you live in times that seem to you, to be going in very bad ways, morally, and you’re working hard to be a good stoic, what do you do? I’m going to look further into that, and report back.


OK, after some further reading, and thinking, I’m back again – So, Stoic thought has it that we are here, not to accumulate great wealth for ourselves, but to use our wealth to provide for ourselves and for others, family, community. So if you are a successful business person who has much and gives nothing, well Boo to you, you greedy person!

Also, further to the idea of possessions, Stoic thought has it that you would do well to appreciate what you already have, rather than to long for or even work toward more than you can ever need. Gratitude for your haves, will bring you a better life than yearning always for more and more have nots. 

Another important issue to always remember, is that it is not your role to live the lives of others, your own life is the only one you can, or should try to live. This is a concept that requires thought, lots of it, sometimes. As a parent, your role is to assist your child as much as you can, and this can mean teaching them good ways to live, be, do things. You are not making them live in a way they can’t or don’t want to live, just a way to also live a life that is in keeping with the four cardinal Virtues – wisdom, morality, courage, and moderation.

If each and every one of us looked to living our own lives with wisdom, morality, courage and moderation, there would be plenty of the good for us all, with none of us ever missing out on what we need to live good lives. Food, shelter, enough, and no more.

So, given this is not that world, or not yet, far from it actually, what are we to do? The way I see it, we are to do the very best we can, to make that world come into being. Start with ourselves, and our family, then extend what we do as far as we can, within our sphere of influence. We are here in this world, to better ourselves, surely? After all, otherwise what is the point of anything we do, it not that?

The Modern Day Stoic

Living the life of a Stoic, when you’re actually living in a world a million (actually two thousand) years away from Ancient Greece and Roman times, is a bit tricky. There are so many things going on in modern life, that try to keep you away from being the best person you can be, in Stoic terms.

You settle down to think on the day you had, and think on the things that went well, and the things that need more work. Then you think further on the actions you will take the next day, to get the work done on the not so good items from this day.

Then your husband tells you about his sudden idea, about having lunch the next day, and you agree that would be a good idea, and suddenly you’re not really sure about what on earth you will actually be doing tomorrow, and what really must be done, anyway. Perhaps you just got caught up in too much busy work, and there isn’t really anything you MUST do tomorrow?

Then there’s an online game going on, on your laptop, which is sitting on your lap as you muse your way through your thoughts, and the person playing the game with you is having a tough time at the moment, and you feel sorry for her, and want to keep her happy by playing this game against her. And you know she will beat you yet again, because 1/ she is really good at the game, and 2/ one of the reasons your game isn’t up to scratch is because your laptop mouse is sticky, and doesn’t work as quickly as you want it to.

And you know saying that is pissy-weak, even though you’ve thought about this subject off and on, since you noticed it a couple of months ago, but you aren’t really sure what you can do about the sticky mouse, or even if it really is a sticky mouse, or whether perhaps you’re doing something wrong, and that makes it not work properly. But mentioning any of this to the person who’s been kicking your arse at this game would be weak as, and you won’t do that.

She’s your friend, and you’re pleased she is obviously having a good time thrashing you, even though she’s been having chemo, and is obviously not up to scratch physically, but there’s not a thing wrong with her mine, and that’s great! And none of this has anything to do with anything that didn’t go as you wanted today, and in fact it was a good day, even in something you wanted to do, didn’t happen, it can happen another time, you have a few weeks, and even if it doesn’t happen that’s still OK.

And you’re thinking to yourself, I bet Aristotle or Marcus Aurelius never had to deal with anything like this, and then you think, hmm, well maybe they had to deal with spears that didn’t work properly, or other things, and really, dealing with ‘stuff’ and with people, they’re the same kinds of things no matter which age you’re living in, and if you truly want to live a good and Stoic life, you shouldn’t be wasting your time playing games online, you should be writing books, and intelligent thoughtful poetry, and working on your next workshop you’ll be presenting, and on other community related things.

Then you realise this game you’ve been playing online is also a community related thing, assisting your healing friend to feel worthwhile, which can be difficult when your cancer treatment made your hair fall out, and you haven’t been able to come along to your writing group to meet up with all of your friends.

So thinking on that, I’m going to finish up here, and go and do my community service, and get thrashed by my friend again, because of whatever reason (not being as good as her at it being the main reason perhaps). So goodbye, and isn’t life a weirdly twisty kind of thing, and don’t you just love it to bits! Haha, I sure do!

Who’s to Judge?

I’ve had a day at home today, while husband and son are off doing ‘sports’ related things. It’s a community thing, with the local Bowling Club, and my attendance would have been welcome. I probably would have enjoyed myself, watching the bowls game, and eating great food. But I stayed at home.

I would have been a good wife and mother, to have followed the men in the family, staying home, just me and the dog, able to do whatever I choose, what a lovely chance, not to be wasted! When I do things like this, there’s a frisson of guilt, because, of course, society frowns on lazy days, when others are ‘working’.

A good drying day, but clouds brought rain today too …

But it was only a frisson of guilt, and I easily got over that. I actually spent time on getting the washing finished off, after my husband started it happening. I hung it out, checked it several times, bringing clothes as they dried, my time lengthened due to a brief but heavy shower. Now the clothes are all brought in and put away. Womanly work there, for sure.

I would never call myself a ‘housewife’, being a good housewife would never be a title for me. I do what I need to, if and when I can, but my husband, since he retired does far more than I do. He cares more than I about these things, as long as I have clothes and food, that’s all I need. I seldom look at the carpets, don’t vacuum, he does.

It isn’t laziness, it’s actually a good arrangement. I am a writer, he is my husband and carer, I do what I can, when I can, as happened with the washing today. Actually, putting away the washing is almost always my job, both my husband and I are happy with that split up of chores, and so it’s an arrangement that works perfectly well.

If anyone looking on ever questioned why I don’t do much, and he does lots, well, it isn’t any of their business, is it? I have a chronic illness, that goes OK, as long as life is going OK. Having my husband as my carer, and so doing much for me, that keeps things going along OK, and he receives money from the government in his carer role, and we’re both happy with this.

Having life organised in ways that work well for those involved, this surely is the most rational way anyone should live their life? No-one is hurt by me not being a good housewife. I do all I can, as long as it doesn’t inconvenience me, I help out with finances, and pay bills for us both. Things go well, no one, as I said, gets hurt, and in fact it is a peaceful and good way to go.

If everyone could find ways to live their lives like this, with each doing what they can, and fitting in so no-one is discombobulated, what a fine world we could all have. But of course there are always some who want more than others have, greedy rather than needy people. This can certainly lead to discombobulations, for sure. If I do my part, though, doing all I can in my home, community and the world, then I am contributing, and no-one can say otherwise.

So if I say my life is a good one, lived in a Stoic manner, with others helped, and none hurt, by my actions, no-one can say otherwise, and I consider my way of living, in thoughtful consideration to others, to be the best way of living my life, given my current circumstances. I know my life, and I am the one to judge, because I understand the reasons, and the rationality of it. I say I live a good and virtuous life, in the Stoic manner.

A life of ease, but a thoughtful life as well …

Who else can say they too, life a good and Stoic life?