A philosopher is a master of his own thought. Most of us are controlled by desire but a stoic would have another side to it not a ‘dark’ one but a one of its own . A stoic would say “virtue is the only good”, which is possibly a very straight forward way to put a person who believes in living in the moment.

Margary Grave gives a compelling new interpretation of the stoic position . She argues that “the chief demand of stoic ethics is not that we should suppress or deny our feelings, but that we should perfect the rational mind at the core of every human being. It’s common to be carried away by our emotions and dwell on them, it is only human to do so. Freud has something interesting to share about stoicism . According to Douglas Kirsner “Freud’s method involved detachment but did not imply moral coldness and indifference any more than stoicism did”. The stoics wanted to be therapists of the mind just as physicians cared for the body.

For both Freud and the stoics, reason was in battle with the passion and required clear sight to have a chance of prevailing over them. Freud made extensive forays at individual and collective levels but in the years since Freud’s death, the psychoanalytic vision has narrowed. It is easier to say stoics were their own mind therapists and their aversion to the display of pleasure and pain made them inexpressive in some sort of a way.

On Early Stoicism
According to Brad Inwood, the older stoics not only elaborated on analysts of human action in greater detail than rivals did, but they used it. He further adds that stoic ethics are based on an understanding of human nature which is naturalistic and this theory is shared with most Greek ethical systems . It is also stated that stoics were frequently inclined to de-emphasize the value of purely theoretical knowledge in a way that Plato and Aristotle were not. Significantly enough, there is no trace of a individual self in stoic psychology . When the rational soul functioned in producing an action, it functioned as a unity.

There are five lessons from seneca, Musonius Rufus , Marcus Aurelius, Epictetus and Zeno of citium that were very interesting. These are:
1. Live everyday As it were your last:
2. Food is the best test of self control.
3. Failure is natural, regret is foolish
4. Focus on small things
5. Throw away vanity.

It’s not easy to explain stoicism in a simple way, everyone has their own deep interpretation of the definition of a stoic. As mentioned earlier, Freud only believed in detachment and not particularly being cold or indifferent. It is a very varied topic for discussion with deeper meaning to it. On the other hand, it's only human nature to be vulnerable and feel the pain or pleasure and dwell on them.

1. Margaret Grover,University Of Chicago Press (2008) ,“Stoicism and Emotion”
2. Douglas Kirsner,(2006), “Freud, Civilization, religion and Stoicism” 3. Brad Inwood ,”Ethics and human action in early stoicism

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