And let silence be the general rule, or let only what is necessary be said, and in few words.
Epictetus, Encheiridion, XXXIII
My mother always taught me that if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all. But it’s not just about nicety. If you can’t say anything constructive, stay silent.
How hard it is to just keep our mouths shut sometimes! Social media has its positive and negative attributes, but in my personal opinion, the negative has a tendency to outweigh the positive, especially in our divisive era. I guarantee there are a plethora of examples of amazing positivity. I think you know from experience, though, that if you were to receive 99 positive comments and one scathing criticism, which one would you focus on the most? Human nature is to respond violently to negativity, even it is some vitriolic firebrand trolling out of boredom. Because we want to be liked, we crave thinking someone cares or is interested in our lives. On my YouTube channel, I always get a chuckle when someone takes the time to give me a thumbs down on an instructional video. We get it, thou dedicated misanthrope. You hate learning!
Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Including mine about the pitfalls of social media. Continue reading “Thunderous Silence”
My sobriety has relied on two schools of philosophy to help make sense of everything that goes through my head on a daily basis: Stoicism and the teachings of Christ/letters of Paul.
In a nutshell, stoicism is an ancient Greek philosophy that focuses on personal ethics informed by logic and its view of the natural world. It is about living in the moment, controlling your desires, seeking justice and equality, using logic and reason to understand the world we live in. Personally, it has taught me a lot about accountability and what it means to have virtue in our ever-burgeoning world of material value. These values are found in the writings of Marcus Aurelius, Epictetus, and Seneca, among others.
For me, the teachings of Christ boil down to a few basic tenants: love one another, be kind, treat others well, control your desires, do not be tempted by wrongdoing. There is much more to it than those values.
Consequently, these are not the only two schools I study.
I will continue to expand on these ideas throughout the course of my personal growth. But please know that I view my daily life based around these philosophical schools.
Because I use it as a daily “devotional” of sorts, I will often pull heavily from Ryan Holiday’s book The Daily Stoic. Some days, I may take what I have read for that day and expound my own thoughts on his words. Same goes for the Bible.
Ultimately, my personal goal is to strive to use philosophy as a way to expand my mind and cope with addiction.