Stoicism & Could You Possibly be a Stoic?

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Ollie Drivas, Editor, Layout Editor

 

Introduction: What is Stoicism?

You may be wondering exactly what “stoicism” is. Many people might view this as just another idea from a dull history class, or might not even be aware of the philosophy at all. But stoics are all around you, and stoicism existed in humanity long before it was recognized as a philosophical school of thought. It is the ability to endure any difficulty or worry, regardless of whether it is materialistic or ideological. Think of yourself when you get an F on a test or when your sports team is in the process of losing a game. Eventually, you’re likely to become upset or angry. This is a normal human characteristic. To some extent, however, stoicism encourages the idea of rejecting any strong emotion. People who are stoic view obstacles as minor challenges. Emotions are still present, of course, but stoics care about topics that matter. “They are the most real people alive,” adds Aeon, a modern magazine.

 

This philosophical idea first appeared during the Hellenistic period, when the Greeks were emerging as teachers and thinkers. The words“stoic” and “stoicism” derive from Ποικιλη Στοα or as translated to English, the painted porch. This name derives from an open market in Athens where stoics would convene and impart philosophy. 

 

Who Are Some of the Great Stoics?

Although stoicism began in Athens, it quickly migrated to Rome. Therefore, the popularity of stoicism clustered around the area. Most of the great stoics were part of Roman civilization. Among the very notable mentions of our Greek stoics is Zeno of Citium and Epictetus of Hierapolis, well-known founders of stoicism. With the Romans, however, the most established authors of stoicism were Marcus Aurelius and Lucius Annaeus Seneca. Some examples of stoic-coded characters in popular shows include Batman from the Batman vs. Joker series, Mikasa and Levi Ackerman from Attack on Titan, and many more. 

 

Are You A Stoic?

This way of life, or personal philosophy, isn’t necessarily identified by a particular characteristic, and being a stoic does not come at birth. It is learned. Stoicism can be picked up at any stage of life, and it’s proven to be a very naturally healthy way to live. Are you already a stoic without your knowledge? Or have you just not incorporated it into your life yet?

 

Take this research-based quiz to find out!     

Conclusion: Should Stoicism Gain Greater Recognition?

Right off the bat: yes. This ancient philosophy mobilized eons ago, is still thriving in the modern world. Although not many people know this way of life, this should change. Being a stoic entails learning to be content with your circumstances and attaining a healthy life. If you begin to forgive and smile at those who tend to antagonize you— with the ways of a stoic, you are guaranteed a happier life. Focus on the things that bring you happiness and passion. When you take this opportunity, you will thrive in your future, your relationships, and your community. 

 

      Works Cited

Baltzly, Dirk. “Stoicism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy).” Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 15 April 1996, https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/stoicism/. Accessed 11 October 2022.

Wallace, Lary, and Sam Haselby. “Why Stoicism is one of the best mind-hacks ever devised.” Aeon, 24 December 2014, https://aeon.co/essays/why-stoicism-is-one-of-the-best-mind-hacks-ever-devised. Accessed 11 October 2022.

“What Is Stoicism? A Definition & 9 Stoic Exercises To Get You Started.” Daily Stoic, https://dailystoic.com/what-is-stoicism-a-definition-3-stoic-exercises-to-get-you-started/. Accessed 11 October 2022.