November 29th, 2003

The Philosopher:Epictetus

Francesca brought some stuff about a philospher Epictetus last weekend. Just read it on T-Day nite. Some things that I want to remember from what this bloke preached:

For Epictetus, a happy life and a virtuous life are synonymous. Happiness and personal fulfillment are the natural consequences of doing the right thing.

His prescription for a good life centered on three main themes:

1) Master your desires
2) preforming your duties
3) Learning to thing clearly about yourself and your relations within the larger community

Whereas our society (practically, if not always explicitly) regards prefessional achievement, wealth, power, and fame as desirable and admirable, Epictetus views these as individual and irrelevant to true happiness.

his practical observation was that a virtuous life leads to inner coherence and outward harmony. There is great relief in being morally consistent: The soul relaxes, and we can thus efficiently move forward in our endeavors, as Epictetus would say, “without hindrance”.

My Comment
I used to read philosophy, especially when I returned from a long trip. Trying to find answers…now – I don’t have the patience I used to have to sort through it all. Francesca’s cheat sheet was good in that it broke down what this guy was saying. One thing I hope to take away and re-instill – is to just live with virtue.

For me that means, don’t lie. Chris and I talked about just being completely honest with people since we started BootsnAll. I think we have and I hope I have in my personal life as well. No lies, no worries.

2 Responses to “The Philosopher:Epictetus”

  1. Freesia says:

    I meant to ask you if you ever got around to reading that article. Glad you got something out of it. Reading that was further encouragement to never settle for mediocrity.

  2. Jen Leo says:

    For me: happiness, love, and giving as much as it is possible while still remaining genuine will all connect back to each other.

    There are so many takes on how to live well, being true to ourselves we’ll find which works best for each of us.

    Now, where’s the Pinot before we fall into a well.

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