Why Plato’s Euthydemus is relevant to Stoics

In preparation for Stoic Camp New York 2015 I have been reading one of Plato’s dialogues, the Euthydemus. My co-organizer, Greg Lopez, and I picked it because it is crucial to understand the Stoic concept of wisdom. The version I have is published by Focus, with an introduction by Denise Schaeffer, translation by Gregory McBrayer and Mary Nichols, […]

Stoics should be vegetarian

Vegetarianism is a big deal, ethically speaking. It was put on the map in terms of public philosophy by utilitarian Peter Singer, with his landmark Animal Liberation, published back in 1975. In truth, utilitarians have been very clear on the subject from the beginning. The founder of the approach, Jeremy Bentham, famously said that when […]

Nope, Jordan Peterson ain’t no Stoic

People have been asking my opinion — from a Stoic perspective — about Jordan Peterson for a while now, and the time has finally come. The impetus derives from a recent article by Justin Vacula published at the Modern Stoicism blog, which takes a cautionary positive approach to Peterson, and draws parallels between his views […]

Stoic advice: impostor syndrome

[Feel free to submit a question for this column, addressing it at massimo at howtobeastoic dot org. However, consider that I have a significant backlog, and I may not get to your question for some time, or at all.] A. writes: I’m a researcher in Physics and a big fan of your work in philosophy […]

Stoic Q&A: is love part of what is true, good, and desirable?

L. writes: I recently stumbled upon your article/essay “Stoicism on Romantic Love and Commitment” and while it was a marvelous read (you even got me to agree with Camus, which was a first) it hasn’t answered the questions that made me look up how Stoicism handles love. The initial spark stems from this Wikipedia article […]

A simple Stoic timeline

It’s always a good thing to have a sense of the development of ideas, so as to be able to put them in a broader historical and cultural context. This is true, of course, also for philosophies, such as Buddhism or Stoicism. Fortunately, the history of Stoicism is far less complex than that of Buddhism, […]

Living according to nature

The ancient Stoics were famous, or infamous, depending on whom one asks, for promulgating doctrines that sounded “paradoxical.” Indeed, Cicero wrote an entire book called Paradoxa Stoicorum (my commentary here), in which he tried to explain six of them. “Paradox” here, however, does not literally mean something that is logically contradictory, or that otherwise appears […]