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Re: the Stoa and the Borg

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  • ctisphonics
    Insular groups indeed do become sickly and narrow minded, but it s quite wonderful this is so and we re all heavily indebted to them... for without this
    Message 1 of 20 , Jul 5, 2012
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      Insular groups indeed do become sickly and narrow minded, but it's quite wonderful this is so and we're all heavily indebted to them... for without this phenomena the best change in intellectual life would be impossible, and we would still be in the stoneage using stone hand axes, content.

      The insular group preserves aspects of itself in a untouchable, absolute conservatism.... but only aspects- look at the Druze as a example- they've modeled their whole community on preserving it's aspects it doesn't want to change, but a side effect of this is it produced a caste system of responsibilities and is abnormally liberal in many respects, to the point of nearly doing a mass conversion to more vedic ideals. It's because they share a few anarchic laftover traditions that lost meaning since the Harrian Occupation of that region PRIOR to the jewish era. We know they were there, we have treaties and temples, know their gods listed in them, have remains. They were one of the dead last groups to convert to Islam, and continue to worship bulls to this day.... but they mostly keep most of the people in their Mosque even in the dark, keeping secret elite rites. However, first contact with some Hare Krishnas, and they srated noting 'similarities', but more than can actually be attributed, given the Vedanta faith was most certainly NOT the faith of those Indo-Iranians who invaded across Persia before zoroastrianism took firm hold, and indians of that time did stuff much different from today, such as enjoying a good streak.

      None the less, it's one of countless examples (and I can give much, much more) of a group having the seeds or remains of a previous system of thought built into it- however small and fragmentary, and inspiring people from that point on to resurrect the idea. It's because ideas are produced by anatomical features and processes of the mind.... there are no free floating ideas, and ideas are not equal. A limited realm for meaning to any idea if it HAS meaning in the first place, a beginning and a end, and if it can be rationalized, it can be applied to a cognitive metric to predict it's point of expected bifurication. The syllogism is a good tool for doing this, and philosophy has made a name for itself doing just this. No one agrees on anything, but we all agree with someone else on something. Isn't that remarkable?

      It's why I laugh at the idea of a pure Stoicism. It's not possible. It's really not possible, and any attempt will lead to unintended consequences down the road. You have Cynicism built into it, and Cynicism went all over the place, and itself was largely absorbed into Christianity without much fuss (a little fuss to be fair, but not much), and I suspect the Cynics who traveled east during the era of the greek and roman states likely found it rather easy to blend in with the Buddhist and Hindu sages.... though I can't pick them out in fairness in history there over the generally similar native groups.

      At root, it's a game of playing favorites of a certain era and group of thinkers..... and even then it's a paradox of hoping they didn't use a mishmass of ideas from earlier or differing contemporary thinkers who had a aspect they agreed on. To think one thought invites the spectrum of other thoughts potentially given the architecture of the brain. Even long lost philosophies are bound to be resurrected and repackaged in time. The human mind and our lifestyles hasn't changed all that much over the last few thousand years.




      --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, John Emmons <jjaaeemmoo@...> wrote:
      >
      > if one is bound by any re strictive creed you become insular to that creeds laws as is evident here a sickly group evolves from this unnatral restiction and is domed by its own  ignorant insularity.
      >
    • Jjaaeemmoo
      you seem to have a very interlectual view of things placing value on things interlectual or scientific as if theres merit in them for there own
      Message 2 of 20 , Jul 5, 2012
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        you seem to have a very interlectual view of things placing value on things interlectual or scientific as if theres merit in them for there own complexity.there is no more or less vitue in a thing simple and basic or complex.a caveman could be as virtue consious as einstien. i hope you agree .but thats good stuff none the less.


        Sent from Samsung Mobile
      • iimaginius@sbcglobal.net
        Hello Erik, I ve considered myself a Stoic for more than a decade now, but something has always been missing. Stoicism provides some great tools for coping
        Message 3 of 20 , Jul 22, 2012
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          Hello Erik,

          I've considered myself a Stoic for more than a decade now, but something has always been missing. Stoicism provides some great tools for coping with day to day life and life challenges, but it recently came to me that what was missing (at least for me personally) was a narrative - a story to be a part of.

          Where did I come from and where am I going and what does it mean for me today. What direction does it give my life? I've created the site below to hopefully create discussion. It is based on my personal experience and with some experience of Star Trek, my hopes for the future

          https://sites.google.com/site/theamericanstoa/

          It would be great to have a stoic community with a set of core values and a mission. As there are many types of Christianity, so there is no reason why there couldn't be different types of stoicism, co-existing and working together.

          All are welcome to visit the site and share their thoughts on this stoic experiment.

          Sincerely, Iames


          --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, Cyberstoic@... wrote:
          >
          > Hello,
          >
          > I have been wrestling with a notion lately to which I am hoping our discussion
          > group may be able to offer some perspective. I have noticed there seems to be
          > a large number of "Christian Stoics" in our group, and it has reminded me of
          > something Rev. Jim Rigby once said about the Stoa. It is a brief elaboration
          > on the statement he made for his entry into The Names.
          >
          > On November 10, 1997, in an e-mail correspondence with me, he said, "My
          > Christianity is a particular way of expressing the Stoic faith, which in my
          > view is the impersonal core of all true faiths. What Buddha does, or Christ,
          > or Socrates, is embody those values in a drama so that we can relate to them
          > as experiences and not just ideas."
          >
          > This is not just an eloquent statement, but one that I have returned to time
          > and again recently as I contemplate the future of the Stoa. Humanity comes
          > from a background of we-versus-they, and religions have been very much a part
          > of this mind set, both politically and theologically. When I first became a
          > Stoic, it was not as a Christian or Buddhist or Moslem, but as a Stoic. I
          > looked at the Stoa as an ALTERNATIVE to religion, period. Reverend Rigby was
          > the first to help me see the possibility of another point of view.
          >
          > Unfortunately, what remains is a sense of vague uncertainty I have about the
          > future of the Stoa for those who would be Stoics and only Stoics. Are we
          > enriched by the multiplicity of beliefs and believers all claiming to be
          > Stoic; or, do we essentially destroy the Stoa by not having a set of beliefs
          > distinct from all others?
          >
          > Let me use an analogy. If we say that everything is art, then it is equally
          > proper to say that nothing is art, or, at least, that the idea of art has
          > become meaningless. If we say that everyone is a Stoic, then it is equally
          > proper to say that no one is a Stoic, because stoicism has no guiding set of
          > principles that make it a unique body of thought.
          >
          > On the other hand, it is currently considered an "enlightened" position to
          > welcome opposing points of view rather than forever be at war with one another
          > over points of dogma. Let me try another analogy. It is one thing to welcome
          > dialogue and quite another to absorb all manner of species as do the Borg (my
          > apologies for the reference if you are not a Trekkie).
          >
          > In case you are not a Trekkie, the Borg are a highly aggressive civilization
          > living in a cube that have made themselves invincible by absorbing all manner
          > of creatures from all over the galaxy. Individuality is non existent in the
          > Borg's pursuit of perfection -- all forms of intelligence are blended into
          > one. Their infamous statement made just before they attack is, "All resistance
          > is futile."
          >
          > Is the New Stoa the philosophical birth of the Borg; or, are we to follow the
          > example of our ancestors and go down in history forever squabbling with one
          > another? Heraclitus said that strife is justice, that war was father and king
          > of all. Do we take that literally to accept the inevitability of philosophical
          > conflict, thereby rationalizing and excusing our delight in intellectual
          > beatings?
          >
          > I'd like hear your opinion. All in favor of becoming the Borg, please rise.
          > Those opposed, Resistance is Futile!
          >
          > Best,
          > Erik, CyborgStoic
          >
        • ctisphonics
          Is Stoicism so narrow and petrified via control of the academics and paleo-conservatives that one can t be a modern day stoic living in the 21st century with
          Message 4 of 20 , Jul 22, 2012
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            Is Stoicism so narrow and petrified via control of the academics and paleo-conservatives that one can't be a modern day stoic living in the 21st century with nuanced yet honest views that didn't exist in the past? All you gotta say is that you are a Stoic. You don't have to lay a claim to denomination or sect, variation is a result of the philosophical life compounded by time. You can lay claim to just being a general 'stoic'. There are no police to call foul, and any man who chooses to do so is a bit of a fool. You don't gotta wear a toga, and it's okay to own a car, and I don't think anyone will call foul on this. So why should I call foul if you've given to contemplation your countries most important documents, such as the declaration of independence? I see this perfectly legitimate, no different than if a Stoic living in a roman occupied Sparta or Athens undertook the study of the constitution and customs of the people. If that happened, the historians and academics would note this and say it's perfectly acceptable to do so.... as there is a precedent. But you don't need a precedent to be a philosopher of a tradition, as philosophers can set new precedents within a tradition.

            I think it's fine to call yourself just a 'Stoic', and no need to proclaim your a sub set 'american stoic'. Your entitled to think and pass on new traditions within the larger community. They will decide whether to keep them going or not after your time.



            --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, "iimaginius@..." <iimaginius@...> wrote:
            >
            > Hello Erik,
            >
            > I've considered myself a Stoic for more than a decade now, but something has always been missing. Stoicism provides some great tools for coping with day to day life and life challenges, but it recently came to me that what was missing (at least for me personally) was a narrative - a story to be a part of.
            >
            > Where did I come from and where am I going and what does it mean for me today. What direction does it give my life? I've created the site below to hopefully create discussion. It is based on my personal experience and with some experience of Star Trek, my hopes for the future
            >
            > https://sites.google.com/site/theamericanstoa/
            >
            > It would be great to have a stoic community with a set of core values and a mission. As there are many types of Christianity, so there is no reason why there couldn't be different types of stoicism, co-existing and working together.
            >
            > All are welcome to visit the site and share their thoughts on this stoic experiment.
            >
            > Sincerely, Iames
            >
            >
            > --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, Cyberstoic@... wrote:
            > >
            > > Hello,
            > >
            > > I have been wrestling with a notion lately to which I am hoping our discussion
            > > group may be able to offer some perspective. I have noticed there seems to be
            > > a large number of "Christian Stoics" in our group, and it has reminded me of
            > > something Rev. Jim Rigby once said about the Stoa. It is a brief elaboration
            > > on the statement he made for his entry into The Names.
            > >
            > > On November 10, 1997, in an e-mail correspondence with me, he said, "My
            > > Christianity is a particular way of expressing the Stoic faith, which in my
            > > view is the impersonal core of all true faiths. What Buddha does, or Christ,
            > > or Socrates, is embody those values in a drama so that we can relate to them
            > > as experiences and not just ideas."
            > >
            > > This is not just an eloquent statement, but one that I have returned to time
            > > and again recently as I contemplate the future of the Stoa. Humanity comes
            > > from a background of we-versus-they, and religions have been very much a part
            > > of this mind set, both politically and theologically. When I first became a
            > > Stoic, it was not as a Christian or Buddhist or Moslem, but as a Stoic. I
            > > looked at the Stoa as an ALTERNATIVE to religion, period. Reverend Rigby was
            > > the first to help me see the possibility of another point of view.
            > >
            > > Unfortunately, what remains is a sense of vague uncertainty I have about the
            > > future of the Stoa for those who would be Stoics and only Stoics. Are we
            > > enriched by the multiplicity of beliefs and believers all claiming to be
            > > Stoic; or, do we essentially destroy the Stoa by not having a set of beliefs
            > > distinct from all others?
            > >
            > > Let me use an analogy. If we say that everything is art, then it is equally
            > > proper to say that nothing is art, or, at least, that the idea of art has
            > > become meaningless. If we say that everyone is a Stoic, then it is equally
            > > proper to say that no one is a Stoic, because stoicism has no guiding set of
            > > principles that make it a unique body of thought.
            > >
            > > On the other hand, it is currently considered an "enlightened" position to
            > > welcome opposing points of view rather than forever be at war with one another
            > > over points of dogma. Let me try another analogy. It is one thing to welcome
            > > dialogue and quite another to absorb all manner of species as do the Borg (my
            > > apologies for the reference if you are not a Trekkie).
            > >
            > > In case you are not a Trekkie, the Borg are a highly aggressive civilization
            > > living in a cube that have made themselves invincible by absorbing all manner
            > > of creatures from all over the galaxy. Individuality is non existent in the
            > > Borg's pursuit of perfection -- all forms of intelligence are blended into
            > > one. Their infamous statement made just before they attack is, "All resistance
            > > is futile."
            > >
            > > Is the New Stoa the philosophical birth of the Borg; or, are we to follow the
            > > example of our ancestors and go down in history forever squabbling with one
            > > another? Heraclitus said that strife is justice, that war was father and king
            > > of all. Do we take that literally to accept the inevitability of philosophical
            > > conflict, thereby rationalizing and excusing our delight in intellectual
            > > beatings?
            > >
            > > I'd like hear your opinion. All in favor of becoming the Borg, please rise.
            > > Those opposed, Resistance is Futile!
            > >
            > > Best,
            > > Erik, CyborgStoic
            > >
            >
          • Daniel Miles
            Iames: I have had a look at your site: https://sites.google.com/site/theamericanstoa/home/core-ideas There are a number of difficulties here, if you want your
            Message 5 of 20 , Jul 23, 2012
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              Iames:

              I have had a look at your site:


              There are a number of difficulties here, if you want your claims to have a serious connection with Stoicism.

              1. ***All people are created equal***

              Clearly, they are not. What matters for the Stoic is that people should strive for virtue, and inequalities offer no impediment to that. This is why Epictetus, a former slave, but later a world-renowned Stoic teacher, is so well regarded.

              2. ***Dream Big, pursue happiness,anyone can make it if they work hard***

              To be sure, the Stoic pursues happiness, but only in the guise of virtue, and in this sense anyone can "make it". But I doubt that this is your intended meaning. Most people who read your sentence will think that you are referring to material wealth and possessions. If "making it" means success in this sense, then your claim is false.

              3. ***The true end and goal of human life is to maximize pleasure - to get a credit balance of it over the course of a lifetime***

              This is contrary to the Stoic outlook. The "goal" for the Stoic is "happiness", conceived as a special sort of engaging with other people and the vicissitudes of life "virtuously". For the Stoic, any subjective sense of pleasure is absolutely not worth pursing, and its pursuit will almost certainly be detrimental for the success of virtue, the true end or goal.

              You can pursue pleasure if you like. That will make you an Epicurean (if nothing else). But you cannot be a Stoic pursuing pleasure as the goal.

              Dan

               


            • iimaginius@sbcglobal.net
              Thank you Daniel, 1. That All people are created equal is mostly sentiment must be admitted. A cursory look through Epictetus and Aurelius brought up ideas
              Message 6 of 20 , Jul 23, 2012
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                Thank you Daniel,

                1. That "All people are created equal" is mostly sentiment must be admitted. A cursory look through Epictetus and Aurelius brought up ideas of all being mortal, interdependent, and in this world together with roles to play. In these regards, aren't we equal?

                2. Good point about the use of "make it". It does have a connotation of material wealth where someone can achieve success and be said to have 'made it' though their personal life is in shambles. Perhaps replace it with "succeed"?

                3. "Pleasure" was a poor choice of words and I will change it on the site to "happiness."

                For all reading...what are three core values/teachings of Stoicism that should be included?

                With Gratitude,
                Iames


                --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, Daniel Miles <danielmiles50@...> wrote:
                >
                > Iames:
                >
                > I have had a look at your site:
                >
                > https://sites.google.com/site/theamericanstoa/home/core-ideas
                >
                > There are a number of difficulties here, if you want your claims to have a
                > serious connection with Stoicism.
                >
                > 1. ***All people are created equal***
                >
                > Clearly, they are not. What matters for the Stoic is that people should
                > strive for virtue, and inequalities offer no impediment to that. This is
                > why Epictetus, a former slave, but later a world-renowned Stoic teacher, is
                > so well regarded.
                >
                > 2. ***Dream Big, pursue happiness,anyone can make it if they work hard***
                >
                > To be sure, the Stoic pursues happiness, but only in the guise of virtue,
                > and in this sense anyone can "make it". But I doubt that this is your
                > intended meaning. Most people who read your sentence will think that you
                > are referring to material wealth and possessions. If "making it" means
                > success in this sense, then your claim is false.
                >
                > 3. ***The true end and goal of human life is to maximize pleasure - to get
                > a credit balance of it over the course of a lifetime***
                >
                > This is contrary to the Stoic outlook. The "goal" for the Stoic is
                > "happiness", conceived as a special sort of engaging with other people and
                > the vicissitudes of life "virtuously". For the Stoic, any subjective sense
                > of pleasure is absolutely not worth pursing, and its pursuit will almost
                > certainly be detrimental for the success of virtue, the true end or goal.
                >
                > You can pursue pleasure if you like. That will make you an Epicurean (if
                > nothing else). But you cannot be a Stoic pursuing pleasure as the goal.
                >
                > Dan
                >
              • TheophileEscargot
                Jan Garret has a very short list of six Basic Ideas of the Stoics , which I think is very useful: http://www.wku.edu/~jan.garrett/stoa/stoabasi.htm
                Message 7 of 20 , Jul 23, 2012
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                  Jan Garret has a very short list of six "Basic Ideas of the Stoics", which I think is very useful:

                  http://www.wku.edu/~jan.garrett/stoa/stoabasi.htm 


                  --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, "iimaginius@..." <iimaginius@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Thank you Daniel,
                  >
                  > 1. That "All people are created equal" is mostly sentiment must be admitted. A cursory look through Epictetus and Aurelius brought up ideas of all being mortal, interdependent, and in this world together with roles to play. In these regards, aren't we equal?
                  >
                  > 2. Good point about the use of "make it". It does have a connotation of material wealth where someone can achieve success and be said to have 'made it' though their personal life is in shambles. Perhaps replace it with "succeed"?
                  >
                  > 3. "Pleasure" was a poor choice of words and I will change it on the site to "happiness."
                  >
                  > For all reading...what are three core values/teachings of Stoicism that should be included?
                  >
                  > With Gratitude,
                  > Iames
                  >
                  >
                  > --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, Daniel Miles danielmiles50@ wrote:
                  > >
                  > > Iames:
                  > >
                  > > I have had a look at your site:
                  > >
                  > > https://sites.google.com/site/theamericanstoa/home/core-ideas
                  > >
                  > > There are a number of difficulties here, if you want your claims to have a
                  > > serious connection with Stoicism.
                  > >
                  > > 1. ***All people are created equal***
                  > >
                  > > Clearly, they are not. What matters for the Stoic is that people should
                  > > strive for virtue, and inequalities offer no impediment to that. This is
                  > > why Epictetus, a former slave, but later a world-renowned Stoic teacher, is
                  > > so well regarded.
                  > >
                  > > 2. ***Dream Big, pursue happiness,anyone can make it if they work hard***
                  > >
                  > > To be sure, the Stoic pursues happiness, but only in the guise of virtue,
                  > > and in this sense anyone can "make it". But I doubt that this is your
                  > > intended meaning. Most people who read your sentence will think that you
                  > > are referring to material wealth and possessions. If "making it" means
                  > > success in this sense, then your claim is false.
                  > >
                  > > 3. ***The true end and goal of human life is to maximize pleasure - to get
                  > > a credit balance of it over the course of a lifetime***
                  > >
                  > > This is contrary to the Stoic outlook. The "goal" for the Stoic is
                  > > "happiness", conceived as a special sort of engaging with other people and
                  > > the vicissitudes of life "virtuously". For the Stoic, any subjective sense
                  > > of pleasure is absolutely not worth pursing, and its pursuit will almost
                  > > certainly be detrimental for the success of virtue, the true end or goal.
                  > >
                  > > You can pursue pleasure if you like. That will make you an Epicurean (if
                  > > nothing else). But you cannot be a Stoic pursuing pleasure as the goal.
                  > >
                  > > Dan
                  > >
                  >
                • Daniel Miles
                  Iames: 1. That All people are created equal is mostly sentiment must be ... These thoughts begin to show how different we all are, one from another, not how
                  Message 8 of 20 , Jul 26, 2012
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                    Iames:

                    1. That "All people are created equal" is mostly sentiment must be admitted.  A cursory look through Epictetus and Aurelius brought up ideas of all being mortal, interdependent, and in this world together with roles to play. In these regards, aren't we equal?

                    These thoughts begin to show how different we all are, one from another, not how equal we are. We may all be mortal, and in this regard we all share the same fate, and the liabilities that come with illness, aging, and mortality. But our individual experiences show a tendency to difference, not equality. A baby may die of an infection, say, as may a centenarian. But this does not make them equal. In what were they equal? Did they adopt the same roles? No. Did they live for similar spans? Certainly not! Did they attain a similar level of philosophical insight? Hardly... By virtue of being human we are all vulnerable to the turns of fortune that have fallen on human beings since the beginning. I fear that the equality you mention amounts to no more than pointing out that all are subject to the human condition, and in that condition is an almost infinite variety of differences.
                     
                    2. Good point about the use of "make it".  It does have a connotation of material wealth where someone can achieve success and be said to have 'made it' though their personal life is in shambles.  Perhaps replace it with "succeed"?

                    Most people do not mean by "succeed" what the Stoic means. Success for the Stoic means progress to virtue. When engaging with society at large, the Stoic may very well say to someone that they have succeeded at something -- at getting a better paid job, for instance. But for the Stoic, this must be understood against the background of living in accordance with nature and making progress to virtue. What matters is not succeeding in getting some indifferent thing -- success is ultimately no more desirable that failure -- but in aiming to carrying out all one's actions virtuously, appropriately satisfying the requirements of one's roles.

                    3. "Pleasure" was a poor choice of words and I will change it on the site to "happiness."

                    For strangers to Stoicism, this always needs a full explanation. Almost all people, certainly in the West, think of happiness in terms of enjoying pleasurable things, having access to them and the wealth to control and possess them. Happiness translates the ancient word, "eudaimonia", which literally means being possessed of a "good spirit". For the Stoic, it refers to finding a way to live in accordance with nature so as to flourish as fully as possible.

                    Almost all non-Stoics would find it risible that the sick, or disposed, or those facing death, or those held up to ridicule, or those falsely accused and imprisoned could be happy. If they be Stoic, they may be happy, and the world will continue on its way, heedless of what the Stoics teach.

                    Dan
                  • e.grossheide
                    Hello, To me, being equal means that all humans are equal in value, regardless of all the external differences. In this sense, I think, Stoicism does teach
                    Message 9 of 20 , Jul 26, 2012
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                      Hello,

                      To me, being "equal" means that all humans are equal in value, regardless of all the external differences. In this sense, I think, Stoicism does teach equality.

                      An emperor is not a more valuable human being than his slaves. Rich people are not superior in value to poor people. Men are not superior in value to women (or vice versa). A homeless beggar is not an inferior human being to the powerful boss of a company. Etc.

                      I remember that Epictetus reprimands a man who complains about his slave in no uncertain terms. Epictetus tells this man that it is his duty to patiently endure his slave, because his slaves are his brothers, they are the sons of God and therefore of the same high descent as their owner.

                      And even to feel morally superior to others because one is striving to be virtuous (and others are not) would be irrational, I think. Everybody in this world has an important role to play. It was assigend to him by God, and there is a reason for it. So, in that sense, everybody is important and everybody is equal to everybody else.

                      Kind regards,
                      Eva-Maria



                      --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, Daniel Miles <danielmiles50@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > Iames:
                      >
                      > 1. That "All people are created equal" is mostly sentiment must be
                      > > admitted. A cursory look through Epictetus and Aurelius brought up ideas
                      > > of all being mortal, interdependent, and in this world together with roles
                      > > to play. In these regards, aren't we equal?
                      > >
                      >
                      > These thoughts begin to show how different we all are, one from another,
                      > not how equal we are. We may all be mortal, and in this regard we all share
                      > the same fate, and the liabilities that come with illness, aging, and
                      > mortality. But our individual experiences show a tendency to difference,
                      > not equality. A baby may die of an infection, say, as may a centenarian.
                      > But this does not make them equal. In what were they equal? Did they adopt
                      > the same roles? No. Did they live for similar spans? Certainly not! Did
                      > they attain a similar level of philosophical insight? Hardly... By virtue
                      > of being human we are all vulnerable to the turns of fortune that have
                      > fallen on human beings since the beginning. I fear that the equality you
                      > mention amounts to no more than pointing out that all are subject to the
                      > human condition, and in that condition is an almost infinite variety of
                      > differences.
                      >
                    • iimaginius@sbcglobal.net
                      Equality is a tough idea to apply broadly, but Eva-Maria makes a good case that we are all equally important with a part to play assigned by Nature/God. We
                      Message 10 of 20 , Jul 28, 2012
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                        "Equality" is a tough idea to apply broadly, but Eva-Maria makes a good case that we are all equally important with a part to play assigned by Nature/God. We may not be individually equal to certain tasks but we are all here by the grace of God/Nature and must follow its dictates.

                        "Making it" Two ideas, perhaps should be a different thread, but here goes... 1. Making it as equivalent to being saved, enlightened, finding peace. 2. ...as equivalent to conforming to ones social environment.
                        i.e. anyone who tries can find peace and anyone who tries can fit in to the culture they are in. This could mean a house, spouse and 2.5 children if this is the nature of the society one lives in as long as it doesn't compromise the character of the one seeking to conform. Thoughts?

                        *I've never really considered Stoicism and Star Trek, but I imagine Stoics are more like Vulcans than Borg. : )

                        --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, Daniel Miles <danielmiles50@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > Iames:
                        >
                        > 1. That "All people are created equal" is mostly sentiment must be
                        > > admitted. A cursory look through Epictetus and Aurelius brought up ideas
                        > > of all being mortal, interdependent, and in this world together with roles
                        > > to play. In these regards, aren't we equal?
                        > >
                        >
                        > These thoughts begin to show how different we all are, one from another,
                        > not how equal we are. We may all be mortal, and in this regard we all share
                        > the same fate, and the liabilities that come with illness, aging, and
                        > mortality. But our individual experiences show a tendency to difference,
                        > not equality. A baby may die of an infection, say, as may a centenarian.
                        > But this does not make them equal. In what were they equal? Did they adopt
                        > the same roles? No. Did they live for similar spans? Certainly not! Did
                        > they attain a similar level of philosophical insight? Hardly... By virtue
                        > of being human we are all vulnerable to the turns of fortune that have
                        > fallen on human beings since the beginning. I fear that the equality you
                        > mention amounts to no more than pointing out that all are subject to the
                        > human condition, and in that condition is an almost infinite variety of
                        > differences.
                        >
                        >
                        > > 2. Good point about the use of "make it". It does have a connotation of
                        > > material wealth where someone can achieve success and be said to have 'made
                        > > it' though their personal life is in shambles. Perhaps replace it with
                        > > "succeed"?
                        > >
                        >
                        > Most people do not mean by "succeed" what the Stoic means. Success for the
                        > Stoic means progress to virtue. When engaging with society at large, the
                        > Stoic may very well say to someone that they have succeeded at something --
                        > at getting a better paid job, for instance. But for the Stoic, this must be
                        > understood against the background of living in accordance with nature and
                        > making progress to virtue. What matters is not succeeding in getting some
                        > indifferent thing -- success is ultimately no more desirable that failure
                        > -- but in aiming to carrying out all one's actions virtuously,
                        > appropriately satisfying the requirements of one's roles.
                        >
                        > 3. "Pleasure" was a poor choice of words and I will change it on the site
                        > > to "happiness."
                        > >
                        >
                        > For strangers to Stoicism, this always needs a full explanation. Almost all
                        > people, certainly in the West, think of happiness in terms of enjoying
                        > pleasurable things, having access to them and the wealth to control and
                        > possess them. Happiness translates the ancient word, "eudaimonia", which
                        > literally means being possessed of a "good spirit". For the Stoic, it
                        > refers to finding a way to live in accordance with nature so as to flourish
                        > as fully as possible.
                        >
                        > Almost all non-Stoics would find it risible that the sick, or disposed, or
                        > those facing death, or those held up to ridicule, or those falsely accused
                        > and imprisoned could be happy. If they be Stoic, they may be happy, and the
                        > world will continue on its way, heedless of what the Stoics teach.
                        >
                        > Dan
                        >
                      • iimaginius@sbcglobal.net
                        I have updated the Core Ideas page on the American Stoa site: https://sites.google.com/site/theamericanstoa/home/core-ideas This site is my attempt to find
                        Message 11 of 20 , Jul 29, 2012
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                          I have updated the 'Core Ideas' page on the American Stoa site:

                          https://sites.google.com/site/theamericanstoa/home/core-ideas

                          This site is my attempt to find the mutually supportive ideas between Stoic thought and the American experience and bring them together in a positive way. It is a work in progress that I share with the community before completion so if an error is made it can be corrected early on. All thoughts welcome, especially on core Stoic ideas not represented yet, i.e. what's missing or those with alternate interpretations.

                          I am currently working through Aurelius, as evidenced by the references solely from Meditations...I imagine this preliminary part of the work as a six month project at minimum, so these references will be expanded and then refined.

                          Iames



                          --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, "iimaginius@..." <iimaginius@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > "Equality" is a tough idea to apply broadly, but Eva-Maria makes a good case that we are all equally important with a part to play assigned by Nature/God. We may not be individually equal to certain tasks but we are all here by the grace of God/Nature and must follow its dictates.
                          >
                          > "Making it" Two ideas, perhaps should be a different thread, but here goes... 1. Making it as equivalent to being saved, enlightened, finding peace. 2. ...as equivalent to conforming to ones social environment.
                          > i.e. anyone who tries can find peace and anyone who tries can fit in to the culture they are in. This could mean a house, spouse and 2.5 children if this is the nature of the society one lives in as long as it doesn't compromise the character of the one seeking to conform. Thoughts?
                          >
                          > *I've never really considered Stoicism and Star Trek, but I imagine Stoics are more like Vulcans than Borg. : )
                          >
                          > --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, Daniel Miles <danielmiles50@> wrote:
                          > >
                          > > Iames:
                          > >
                          > > 1. That "All people are created equal" is mostly sentiment must be
                          > > > admitted. A cursory look through Epictetus and Aurelius brought up ideas
                          > > > of all being mortal, interdependent, and in this world together with roles
                          > > > to play. In these regards, aren't we equal?
                          > > >
                          > >
                          > > These thoughts begin to show how different we all are, one from another,
                          > > not how equal we are. We may all be mortal, and in this regard we all share
                          > > the same fate, and the liabilities that come with illness, aging, and
                          > > mortality. But our individual experiences show a tendency to difference,
                          > > not equality. A baby may die of an infection, say, as may a centenarian.
                          > > But this does not make them equal. In what were they equal? Did they adopt
                          > > the same roles? No. Did they live for similar spans? Certainly not! Did
                          > > they attain a similar level of philosophical insight? Hardly... By virtue
                          > > of being human we are all vulnerable to the turns of fortune that have
                          > > fallen on human beings since the beginning. I fear that the equality you
                          > > mention amounts to no more than pointing out that all are subject to the
                          > > human condition, and in that condition is an almost infinite variety of
                          > > differences.
                          > >
                          > >
                          > > > 2. Good point about the use of "make it". It does have a connotation of
                          > > > material wealth where someone can achieve success and be said to have 'made
                          > > > it' though their personal life is in shambles. Perhaps replace it with
                          > > > "succeed"?
                          > > >
                          > >
                          > > Most people do not mean by "succeed" what the Stoic means. Success for the
                          > > Stoic means progress to virtue. When engaging with society at large, the
                          > > Stoic may very well say to someone that they have succeeded at something --
                          > > at getting a better paid job, for instance. But for the Stoic, this must be
                          > > understood against the background of living in accordance with nature and
                          > > making progress to virtue. What matters is not succeeding in getting some
                          > > indifferent thing -- success is ultimately no more desirable that failure
                          > > -- but in aiming to carrying out all one's actions virtuously,
                          > > appropriately satisfying the requirements of one's roles.
                          > >
                          > > 3. "Pleasure" was a poor choice of words and I will change it on the site
                          > > > to "happiness."
                          > > >
                          > >
                          > > For strangers to Stoicism, this always needs a full explanation. Almost all
                          > > people, certainly in the West, think of happiness in terms of enjoying
                          > > pleasurable things, having access to them and the wealth to control and
                          > > possess them. Happiness translates the ancient word, "eudaimonia", which
                          > > literally means being possessed of a "good spirit". For the Stoic, it
                          > > refers to finding a way to live in accordance with nature so as to flourish
                          > > as fully as possible.
                          > >
                          > > Almost all non-Stoics would find it risible that the sick, or disposed, or
                          > > those facing death, or those held up to ridicule, or those falsely accused
                          > > and imprisoned could be happy. If they be Stoic, they may be happy, and the
                          > > world will continue on its way, heedless of what the Stoics teach.
                          > >
                          > > Dan
                          > >
                          >
                        • e.grossheide
                          Hello, Iames, I think that the sentence Dream big, pursue happiness, anyone can succeed if they work hard doesn t really fit in with Stoicism very well. It
                          Message 12 of 20 , Jul 31, 2012
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                            Hello, Iames,

                            I think that the sentence "Dream big, pursue happiness, anyone can succeed if they work hard" doesn't really fit in with Stoicism very well.

                            It would be necessary to add something like "But if - in spite of your virtuous efforts - you find yourself being very poor, homeless, alone and sleeping under a bridge, you should still be content, at peace, and praise God." :)

                            Being successful in the eyes of society meant little to the Stoics. They didn't think that their happiness depended on it.

                            Kind regards,
                            Eva-Maria



                            --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, "iimaginius@..." <iimaginius@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > I have updated the 'Core Ideas' page on the American Stoa site:
                            >
                            > https://sites.google.com/site/theamericanstoa/home/core-ideas
                            >
                            > This site is my attempt to find the mutually supportive ideas between Stoic thought and the American experience and bring them together in a positive way. It is a work in progress that I share with the community before completion so if an error is made it can be corrected early on. All thoughts welcome, especially on core Stoic ideas not represented yet, i.e. what's missing or those with alternate interpretations.
                            >
                            > I am currently working through Aurelius, as evidenced by the references solely from Meditations...I imagine this preliminary part of the work as a six month project at minimum, so these references will be expanded and then refined.
                            >
                            > Iames
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, "iimaginius@" <iimaginius@> wrote:
                            > >
                            > > "Equality" is a tough idea to apply broadly, but Eva-Maria makes a good case that we are all equally important with a part to play assigned by Nature/God. We may not be individually equal to certain tasks but we are all here by the grace of God/Nature and must follow its dictates.
                            > >
                            > > "Making it" Two ideas, perhaps should be a different thread, but here goes... 1. Making it as equivalent to being saved, enlightened, finding peace. 2. ...as equivalent to conforming to ones social environment.
                            > > i.e. anyone who tries can find peace and anyone who tries can fit in to the culture they are in. This could mean a house, spouse and 2.5 children if this is the nature of the society one lives in as long as it doesn't compromise the character of the one seeking to conform. Thoughts?
                            > >
                            > > *I've never really considered Stoicism and Star Trek, but I imagine Stoics are more like Vulcans than Borg. : )
                            > >
                            > > --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, Daniel Miles <danielmiles50@> wrote:
                            > > >
                            > > > Iames:
                            > > >
                            > > > 1. That "All people are created equal" is mostly sentiment must be
                            > > > > admitted. A cursory look through Epictetus and Aurelius brought up ideas
                            > > > > of all being mortal, interdependent, and in this world together with roles
                            > > > > to play. In these regards, aren't we equal?
                            > > > >
                            > > >
                            > > > These thoughts begin to show how different we all are, one from another,
                            > > > not how equal we are. We may all be mortal, and in this regard we all share
                            > > > the same fate, and the liabilities that come with illness, aging, and
                            > > > mortality. But our individual experiences show a tendency to difference,
                            > > > not equality. A baby may die of an infection, say, as may a centenarian.
                            > > > But this does not make them equal. In what were they equal? Did they adopt
                            > > > the same roles? No. Did they live for similar spans? Certainly not! Did
                            > > > they attain a similar level of philosophical insight? Hardly... By virtue
                            > > > of being human we are all vulnerable to the turns of fortune that have
                            > > > fallen on human beings since the beginning. I fear that the equality you
                            > > > mention amounts to no more than pointing out that all are subject to the
                            > > > human condition, and in that condition is an almost infinite variety of
                            > > > differences.
                            > > >
                            > > >
                            > > > > 2. Good point about the use of "make it". It does have a connotation of
                            > > > > material wealth where someone can achieve success and be said to have 'made
                            > > > > it' though their personal life is in shambles. Perhaps replace it with
                            > > > > "succeed"?
                            > > > >
                            > > >
                            > > > Most people do not mean by "succeed" what the Stoic means. Success for the
                            > > > Stoic means progress to virtue. When engaging with society at large, the
                            > > > Stoic may very well say to someone that they have succeeded at something --
                            > > > at getting a better paid job, for instance. But for the Stoic, this must be
                            > > > understood against the background of living in accordance with nature and
                            > > > making progress to virtue. What matters is not succeeding in getting some
                            > > > indifferent thing -- success is ultimately no more desirable that failure
                            > > > -- but in aiming to carrying out all one's actions virtuously,
                            > > > appropriately satisfying the requirements of one's roles.
                            > > >
                            > > > 3. "Pleasure" was a poor choice of words and I will change it on the site
                            > > > > to "happiness."
                            > > > >
                            > > >
                            > > > For strangers to Stoicism, this always needs a full explanation. Almost all
                            > > > people, certainly in the West, think of happiness in terms of enjoying
                            > > > pleasurable things, having access to them and the wealth to control and
                            > > > possess them. Happiness translates the ancient word, "eudaimonia", which
                            > > > literally means being possessed of a "good spirit". For the Stoic, it
                            > > > refers to finding a way to live in accordance with nature so as to flourish
                            > > > as fully as possible.
                            > > >
                            > > > Almost all non-Stoics would find it risible that the sick, or disposed, or
                            > > > those facing death, or those held up to ridicule, or those falsely accused
                            > > > and imprisoned could be happy. If they be Stoic, they may be happy, and the
                            > > > world will continue on its way, heedless of what the Stoics teach.
                            > > >
                            > > > Dan
                            > > >
                            > >
                            >
                          • iimaginius@sbcglobal.net
                            Marcus Aurelius on everyone being equal in a number of ways: Book 8, Note 7
                            Message 13 of 20 , Aug 4, 2012
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                              Marcus Aurelius on everyone being equal in a number of ways: Book 8, Note 7



                              --- In stoics@yahoogroups.com, Daniel Miles <danielmiles50@...> wrote:
                              >
                              > Iames:
                              >
                              > 1. That "All people are created equal" is mostly sentiment must be
                              > > admitted. A cursory look through Epictetus and Aurelius brought up ideas
                              > > of all being mortal, interdependent, and in this world together with roles
                              > > to play. In these regards, aren't we equal?
                              > >
                              >
                              > These thoughts begin to show how different we all are, one from another,
                              > not how equal we are. We may all be mortal, and in this regard we all share
                              > the same fate, and the liabilities that come with illness, aging, and
                              > mortality. But our individual experiences show a tendency to difference,
                              > not equality. A baby may die of an infection, say, as may a centenarian.
                              > But this does not make them equal. In what were they equal? Did they adopt
                              > the same roles? No. Did they live for similar spans? Certainly not! Did
                              > they attain a similar level of philosophical insight? Hardly... By virtue
                              > of being human we are all vulnerable to the turns of fortune that have
                              > fallen on human beings since the beginning. I fear that the equality you
                              > mention amounts to no more than pointing out that all are subject to the
                              > human condition, and in that condition is an almost infinite variety of
                              > differences.
                              >
                              >
                              > > 2. Good point about the use of "make it". It does have a connotation of
                              > > material wealth where someone can achieve success and be said to have 'made
                              > > it' though their personal life is in shambles. Perhaps replace it with
                              > > "succeed"?
                              > >
                              >
                              > Most people do not mean by "succeed" what the Stoic means. Success for the
                              > Stoic means progress to virtue. When engaging with society at large, the
                              > Stoic may very well say to someone that they have succeeded at something --
                              > at getting a better paid job, for instance. But for the Stoic, this must be
                              > understood against the background of living in accordance with nature and
                              > making progress to virtue. What matters is not succeeding in getting some
                              > indifferent thing -- success is ultimately no more desirable that failure
                              > -- but in aiming to carrying out all one's actions virtuously,
                              > appropriately satisfying the requirements of one's roles.
                              >
                              > 3. "Pleasure" was a poor choice of words and I will change it on the site
                              > > to "happiness."
                              > >
                              >
                              > For strangers to Stoicism, this always needs a full explanation. Almost all
                              > people, certainly in the West, think of happiness in terms of enjoying
                              > pleasurable things, having access to them and the wealth to control and
                              > possess them. Happiness translates the ancient word, "eudaimonia", which
                              > literally means being possessed of a "good spirit". For the Stoic, it
                              > refers to finding a way to live in accordance with nature so as to flourish
                              > as fully as possible.
                              >
                              > Almost all non-Stoics would find it risible that the sick, or disposed, or
                              > those facing death, or those held up to ridicule, or those falsely accused
                              > and imprisoned could be happy. If they be Stoic, they may be happy, and the
                              > world will continue on its way, heedless of what the Stoics teach.
                              >
                              > Dan
                              >
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