Time for some Philosophy. These 4 words, apply to almost any situation you find yourself in, any task you’re up against. But before I dive into them, a quick intro about ‘Stoicism‘. The more I read about Stoicism, it’s clear that it holds a lot of the answers we struggle with in the modern world. If you google “Stoicism”, you’ll come across this explanation on Wikipedia:
“It is a philosophy of personal ethics informed by its system of logic & its views on the natural world”
If you haven’t read about Stoicism, I highly recommend you check it out. Anyhow, I’ll get straight to the point.
These words are actually 4 stoic virtues. The stoics used them as a compass, guiding them through thick and thin.
- Wisdom – Choosing between good & bad. Knowing the difference. Choosing what to do and what not to do.
- Courage – Bravery, being bold even in the face of adverse situations.
- Temperance – Moderation, self-control & self-discipline. Knowing what the limit is. Having the ability to control your actions based on your own code.
- Justice – Be impartial, act accordingly. Treat yourself and others around you fairly. In turn, making life better for those around us & society on the whole.
I’ll be writing more about them soon, but for now, leaving you guys with this:
“The chief task in life is simply this: to identify and separate matters so that I can say clearly to myself which are externals not under my control, and which have to do with the choices I actually control. Where then do I look for good and evil? Not to uncontrollable externals, but within myself to the choices that are my own” — Epictetus
“Don’t you know life is like a military campaign? One must serve on watch, another in reconnaissance, another on the front line. . . . So it is for us—each person’s life is a kind of battle, and a long and varied one too. You must keep watch like a soldier and do everything commanded. . . . You have been stationed in a key post, not some lowly place, and not for a short time but for life.” — Epictetus, Discourses, 3.24.31–36
“‘If you seek tranquillity, do less.’ Or (more accurately) do what’s essential—what the logos of a social being requires, and in the requisite way. Which brings a double satisfaction: to do less, better. Because most of what we say and do is not essential. If you can eliminate it, you’ll have more time, and more tranquillity. Ask yourself at every moment, ‘Is this necessary?’” — Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 4.24
“And a commitment to justice in your own acts. Which means: thought and action resulting in the common good. What you were born to do.” — Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 9.31