To counter the daily anxieties, stress, and emotional swings caused by the barrage of stimuli that plagues modern life, many people have been finding unexpected solace in a philosophy from a very different and distant time: Stoicism. Today, more than 100,000 people are members of online communities for modern Stoics, and there are annual conferences, meet-ups, and workshops for those aspiring to walk the Stoic path. But what is Stoicism, and what makes it resonate so powerfully today?
As John Sellars shows in The Pocket Stoic,
the popular image of the isolated and unfeeling Stoic hardly does justice to the rich vein of thought that we find in the work of Seneca, Epictetus, and Marcus Aurelius, the three great Roman Stoics. Their works are recognized classics, and for good reason–they speak to some of the perennial issues that face anyone trying to navigate their way through life. These writings, fundamentally, are about how to live–how to understand your place in the world, how to cope when things don’t go well, how to manage your emotions, how to behave toward others, and finally, how to live a good life. To be a Stoic is to recognize that much of the suffering in your life is due to the way you think about things, and that you have the ability to train your mind to look at the world in a new way–to recognize what you can and cannot control and to turn adversity into opportunity.
Concise and accessible, The Pocket Stoic
provides a welcome introduction to the lives and thought of the key Stoics. It is also a perfect guide to help you start incorporating the practice of Stoicism into your everyday approach to life.