Stoicism Essay

10634 words - 43 pages

Compared to the leaders of Greek thought and philosophy like Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, the Stoics are considered by many as representatives of a philosophical system of deuterogenic importance. Stoicism revisited Pre-Socratic theories, Plato, Aristotle and even Cynicism. A shared view among the modern analysts of philosophy and particularly Plato is that Stoicism is a stone idol of the teachings of Plato. This is a continuation of the notions of the 19th century scholars, that viewed symptoms of decadence in everything that was chronically distant from the classical period and into the Hellenistic period and of course, the years of the Roman rule.1Roots and Evolution of the StoaThe system of thought that Stoa formed beginning with Zeno towards the end of the 4th century B.C. was later continued by Cleanthes and Chrysippus. It was perfected in the 3rd century and richened by Seneca and Marcus Aurelius. By no means must this school of thought be considered as a bad copy of a glorious past. Stoicism like almost all Hellenistic philosophies is objectively closer to the frame of mind of the modern thought much more than the classical realism of Plato. Historically speaking Stoicism influenced public life from the Hellenistic period to the last century of the Greco-Roman world, having direct impact in science, politics as well the theoretical and ethical thought in general. Most importantly, Stoicism bleed into the teachings of Christian belief, both Seneca and Epictetus were considered Christians by nature. Even though that during the medieval ages the effects of Stoicism was non-existent (like everything else) with the coming of the renaissance Stoic thought came back in the spot light. The arguments about natural theology and natural law are placed according to the terms of the Stoa. From Cartesious to Hume Stoic ethics and epistemology are studies with particular interest. The heroic archetype presented in the tragedies of Shakespeare is drown directly from Stoic thought. From Humanism to modern day philosophical currents, lays the spirit of Stoicism. 2Sortly after the period of the conquests of Alexander the Great at a time that Athens lost the glory of old, a new philosophical system arose. Stoicism became the philosophical preference of many Greeks and non-Greeks. It is believed that it was the Stoic thought that brought together the Greek and Roman culture which in turn meant (combined with the vastness of Alexander's conquests) a universal spread of common thoughts and ideas through out the known world. The Stoic school of philosophy, which (along with its rival, Epicureanism) came to dominate the thinking of the Hellenistic world, and later, the Roman Empire, with some elements of Stoic thought influencing early Christianity. The establishment of the Stoa as an active philosophic current is an extrapolation of the life of Zeno. Focusing on the influence that other schools of thought had on Zeno we will understand better the roots of...

Find Another Essay On Stoicism

Ernest Hemingway and the Art of Stoicism

964 words - 4 pages Stoicism is not just another Greek philosophy – it is a way of life. Common belief characterizes a Stoic as lacking emotion. Stoic reasoning behind a lack of emotion, or indifference, is to prevent passion from blinding rational judgment. Indifference is not the sole identifier of a Stoic; other characteristics include moderation and virtue. Stoicism teaches that happiness can only be obtained through virtue. To achieve indifference and virtue

Stoicism: Cato’s Definition of Moral Worth

707 words - 3 pages In Cicero’s De Finibus, Cato focuses strongly on “Moral Worth” as a doctrine of Stoicism. Cato considers “Moral Worth” as the essentially the only good; however, Cato makes concessions and contradictions about “Moral Worth” in his argument. The concessions and contradictions that Cato makes about “Moral Worth” compromises his focus on “Moral Worth”. Cato’s idea of “Moral Worth” must first be defined. Cato argues that “Moral Worth” is the only

The Tale of Two Philosophies: Epicureanism and Stoicism

2139 words - 9 pages THESIS STATEMENT In Hellenistic Greece, Epicureanism and Stoicism were two influential philosophies encouraging a life of happiness; these philosophies were similar in their belief of the afterlife, but differed in their beliefs of the gods and the approach to attain happiness in life. PURPOSE STATEMENT Through research and analysis, it is shown that Epicureanism and Stoicism both portrayed the general idea of a content life, but had more

Epicureanism and Stoicism: How to Live a Comfortable and Satsifactory Life

1859 words - 7 pages THESIS STATEMENT The philosophical ideas of Epicureanism and Stoicism taught how to live a comfortable and satisfactory life, although they maintained similar aspects, Epicurus and Zeno’s teachings incorporated exceptional differences. PURPOSE STATEMENT In examining literary works, documents, and articles referring to the notable aspects of Epicureanism and Stoicism, the contrasts and discrepancies of these philosophical theories are clear

How Can I Be Happy?: The Different School of Thoughts of Stoicism and Epicureanism

1146 words - 5 pages The study of ethics has for many years divided the philosophy community into competing schools of thought. Two of these schools, Stoicism and Epicureanism, have wrestled with the specific question “How can I be happy?” While the answer may appear obvious at first, the two schools have developed competing theories of happiness that prove it is not such an easy question to answer. The Stoics argue that the way to a happy life is through pursuing

Zeno Of Citirum

1567 words - 7 pages Scholars studying Hellenistic ethics focus on four main chairs of philosophy in Athens that were endowed in 176 CE by Roman Empire Marcus Aurelius: Plantonism, Aristotelianism, Epicureanism, and Stoicism. The expansion, admiration and assimilation of Greek culture and language, known as Hellenism, also contributed to the philosophy that continued in Ancient Rome. One school in particular, Stoicism, flourished in the Roman world (Sellars, 2

Marcus Aurelius, Rome's Greastest Emperor

1296 words - 5 pages could rival that of Cicero. Fronto importance in Marcus’s life was the curiosity of searching for something more concrete. This thirst for knowledge was provided by Junius Rusticus. A distinguish senator like Fronto, Rusticus was a Stoic who instructed Marcus in the logic and theory of Stoicism. Intrigued by Stoicism, Marcus seriously began to study morals and seems to have thought that his literary labours had gone far enough. Marcus

The Flaw in an Impersonal Relationship

1098 words - 4 pages Much of the knowledge pertaining to virtue is the resulting work of Stoics, such as Plato, Aristotle, and Marcus Aurelius. Stoicism can be referred to as the foundation of Christianity however, the lack of a personal relationship with “The One” or God prevents Stoics' souls from reaching their great potential. Principally, Stoics fundamentally believed that “every event that occurs in the cosmos, from the most important to the most trivial

The Concept of the Happy Life; A Comparison in Epicurean and Stoic Philosophies

1170 words - 5 pages very similar to the condition of apathy the Stoics believed was ideal (Matson, 195). Though they existed concurrently, the similarities between the two philosophies ended there; the philosophical arguments presented by Stoicism and Epicureanism differ greatly in terms of religious beliefs, fatalistic existence, and how one might be able to live the happy life.While here is little mention of the religious aspect of a happy life in the Stoic and the

Suffering in Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre

879 words - 4 pages viewing her inner anguish. Jane accomplishes this through stoicism. This occurs many times in the book throughout Jane's life. Within Jane's life, she travels through her childhood home Gateshead Hall, Lowood School, and finally Edward Rochester's Thornfield. In each of these locations, Jane encounters obstacles which cause her suffering. And each time Jane maintains a stoic appearance, she gains these valuable necessities: strength, faith

Shakespearean Texts: Titus Andronisexist

1704 words - 7 pages also male gender roles. He examines the stoicism, masculinity, the requirement of honour, and gender-orientated expectations of men in Elizabethan society. These attitudes towards gender are also evident within relationships between characters. The attitudes and values towards gender are also contrasted in the relationships between men and women. This is specifically shown through the mother-son relationship of Tamora and her two sons, Chiron and

Similar Essays

Stoicism Essay

1039 words - 4 pages things that even children tend to avoid in favor of preferred things. Preferred things include survival, health, popularity, good reputation, and wealth. Rejected things include death, ugliness, unpopularity, and poverty.The Stoic philosophy was widely accepted because its doctrines appealed to people of all classes. Slaves like Epictetus were drawn to it because Stoicism held that all men are created from the same Divine Fire, and thus all men

Stoicism In Ancient Rome Essay

2308 words - 9 pages Stoicism made the transition from an intriguing foreign philosophy to a popular practice because it was taken up by several high profile figures. Scipio Africanus, the original esteemed Roman Stoic died in 129 BCE, but about 40 years later a new crop of celebrated Romans took up the Stoic practice. During the fall of the Roman Republic a group of famed orators, generals, and statesmen including Marcus Junius Brutus (85-42 BCE), Marcus Tullius

Comparing Christianity And Stoicism Essay

3433 words - 14 pages important collision; one between the Roman stoic and the gentile Christian. At this time in Western civilization, Christianity was just planting its seeds and beginning to grow, whereas stoicism was already legitimate in its foundation and strong in its following (Stavrianos 100). One might wonder how Christianity ultimately replaced stoicism as the prominent and official religion in Rome. There are a few particular political and historical

Epictetus: The Enchiridion And Stoicism Essay

995 words - 4 pages As a worldview, Stoicism is a philosophical approach to help people to cope with times of great stress and troubles. In order to give comfort to humanity, the Stoics agree with the Pantheistic view that God and nature are not separate. Instead, the two forces are one. By believing that God is nature, humans have a sense of security because nature, like God, is recognized as rational and perfect. The perfection of nature is explained through the