Happy Stoic New Year

Some End Of Year Stoic Thoughts To Take Into 2020

If a thing is beyond my control, I am not to blame for it, but if it was under my control, I must think deeply on why I allowed it to be.

Planning for the good to occur is a joy, planning for the bad, is a blessing … The sensible person spends at least as much energy planning for the bad, as for the good.

Everything that happens is a chance to learn. Nothing is good or bad, unless it brings no further reflection.

If I cannot be said to be at fault, I will not accept blame. If I was at fault, I will look closely at why it happened, and will take action, as appropriate, to ensure it doesn’t happen again, if such action is possible for me.

When considering my best action, I will look at the broader picture first, not only the best for myself only.

Being a member of a group is an opportunity to reach heights, but if others in the group are unable to reach them with you, you have in truth failed.

Any problems being faced now, will become irrelevant in the future, no matter how big the problem. We all will die …

If you were there when it happened, and did nothing to stop it, can you really say it wasn’t your fault at all? If you had no control over it at all, yes, otherwise no. Always do what you can if, and when, you can.

You are not one person only, you are a member of the group, the community, the world. Do all you can do, to help the best good come to all.

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If you lack the courage to do a thing this time, will you ever have the courage when you have not option but to do it?

A tree that always follows the usual direction of the wind, is a tree that will fall when the wind direction changes. Nature knows this, and acts accordingly. Let Nature be your guide …

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Facing fears and acting teaches you to be strong, hiding away from fears allows them to hurt you, over and over again.

If it is wrong for you to do a thing, but others are doing it, it is still wrong for you to do it …

 

What Stoicism Is About

My ideas about the four cardinal virtues of Stoicism.

Stoicism a way of thinking that has been around for at least two thousand years. It began in Greece all those years back, then was taken up in Roman times, by Emperor Marcus Aurelius. A main focus was on deeper thinking, but more than that, actually living the thoughts they held to.

This thinking focused especially on four cardinal virtues -those of prudence, courage, justice, and temperance. When taking up Stoicism, one must take up these virtues, and live the things learned from these virtues.

Prudence is all about knowing what is right and wrong/good and bad, and acting in the best way possible, the right way, the good way to go throughout all of life. Doing the prudent thing is to do the good thing, the best thing, when looked at rationally and with the eye to the best for all, if relevant.

The virtue of Courage refers to well, to courage, being fearless in the face of danger, doing the right thing even at cost to self. It can also refer to simpler things, like forbearance, facing up to pain and continuing with what is your job to do. Be bold, be intrepid, bravely go where it is right for you to go. Do not do this to be dangerously foolhardy, do it to do the right thing, the best thing you can rationally do.

When looking at the virtue of Justice, it does well to consider it as social virtue, doing the moral/ethical thing. Kindness is involved with this, also fairness, goodwill, benevolence, all of these are encompassed by ‘Justice’. Doing the right thing no matter the hurt to yourself, as long as it is the rational thing, in keeping with who and what you are, this is a Stoic thing.

The final virtue is Temperance. This virtue is all about moderation, knowing when one has had enough and stopping at that point or before, never overindulging. Taking only what you need, is the Stoic way, not being greedy. More importantly, it refers to being self-aware, knowing how much you need. Having self-control shows having this virtue. It is akin to what the contemporary person may call Mindfulness.

So there are some of my thoughts about these four important aspects of Stoicism, I welcome the thoughts of others regarding what I have written and regarding these important virtues.