Greeks and the Romans Essay

Published: 2020-04-22 08:24:05
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A stoic person is perceived to be one with no expressions of feelings or passion. This was a philosophy learned and practiced way before the introduction of Christianity by the Greeks and the Romans. It was derived from the platonic (westernized culture influence) and Socratic(from the Greek origin) traditions (Long A. A and D. N Sedley pp 478). The philosophy stands to point out that the existence of man on earth is by a nature referred to as God. God is further described as the universe which is a reasoning substance(Becker, Lawrence C. New stoicism pp 40).

This substance may be passive(which cannot do anything on its own unless geared to movement/motion) and the active substance(this is the point of reasoning or the destiny of a person often referred to as fate). The issues of having emotions and responding to pain or grieve is seen as a point of weakness and a sign of evil. In stoicism people are encouraged to eradicate desires rather than fulfill them in order to be free. They take the will of a person as and independent entity as pertains good and evil.

The goodness and badness of anything depends on the soul hence one should go where reason leads because in reasoning one is most likely to be in the right track. For them knowledge is very vital for human survival and is attainable through reasoning that leads one to distinguish between truth and fallacy. The stoics believe that the work of the senses is to receive sensations and transfer them to the mind for judgment of the impressions brought. The mind therefore makes right or wrong judgments. In right judgment, there is a point of reasoning and the outcome has no emotional effects attached to it and the vice verser is true.

Stoic therefore seeks to develop self control in order to overcome emotions which in many cases are seen as destructive and bad. The self control is gained by thinking clearly and with no biasness hence embracing the idea of reasoning. In interpersonal existence, there is emphasis on love and brotherhood without anger, jealous, inequality, envy and bitterness. Therefore wickedness is condemned with the strongest terms possible in this philosophy. All the above are considered as fruits of emotions which should be transformed into resolutes for straight forward judgment and an inner calm.

The practice of stoic philosophy was seen to not only bring an inner calm but also to eradicate suffering through a state of peace in the mind. the interrelation practices in the stoic philosophy would therefore produce virtue, harmonious living, respect and value for every person and lastly equality. The stoic people in the ancient Greek and Roman times were against mistreatment of slaves as they were fellow sons of God as the rest of the people. (Becker, Lawrence C. Reciprocity. pp 100) Stoicism was guarded by four main pillars without which there would be no happiness in life.

The first pillar is wisdom. this is a state of knowing and understanding the issues around oneself. wisdom helps in discerning the root cause of a problem hence give a correct solution in the menace. It incorporates the use of knowledge hence the answer to the terms why, when, where and how. The second pillar is encouragement which is seen as an aspect of will, bravery and fortitude. This is the main tool used to overcome emotions like fear, anxiety and pain hence enables one to do what is right. The third pillar was the stand of justice which entails moral uprightness in ethics, law and equity.

This stresses the idea of fairness in the theory of distributive justice(Elizabeth Carter. pp 130) as well as utilitarianism and retributivism in the theory of retributive justice. The last pillar incorporates temperance. This is the state of controlling the natural appetites and senses as dictated by the principles of reason. This later yields to moderation and serenity in the society. According to the enchiridion, the advice given shows that man does not get problems and disturbances from the things around him but how he perceives of them(Epictus pp24)

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