Running With The Stars: Stoicism for Modern Life

Wenceslaus Hollar, Shell (Murex brandaris), c. 1645. The Murex Brandaris is the shellfish from which Tyrian Purple is made, linking the first and last Stoic writers. Zeno of Citium was said to be a trader in the dye before he was shipwrecked, and Marcus Aurelius wore a Tyrian Purple cloak, as all emperors did as a matter of custom.

This is a series of essays devoted to a Stoic ethical way of life that anybody can subscribe to, regardless of their spiritual beliefs. I have removed the paywall from these essays so everybody can have access to these ideas.

Prelude — an analysis of the Stoic conception of selfhood. The essay argues that the core of Stoicism can lie in the human condition, not in the belief in a divine logos. It proposes a new grounding for Stoic ethics based on the idea that the only thing truly identifiable with us is our choices.

Introduction — I propose a new Stoicism based on the "Fourfold Root" of Stoic virtue: Autonomy, Perspective, Objectivity, and Control. These four aspects correspond to the ancient Stoic themes of desire/aversion, judgement, impulse, and self-understanding.

The following four chapters, covering each aspect of the fourfold root, can be read in any order. Here they are listed in order of publication:

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Conclusion — the new Stoicism as a universal "Layer-Two" philosophy that adapts to the unique traits and circumstances of every person and their own belief system, allowing anyone to find peace and fulfillment through personal choices and reason.