Stoicism and Christianity: Lessons, Similarities and Differences

Most people see Stoicism and Christianity as polar opposites, but the belief systems do overlap in several ways. While more differences than similarities exist between the two, we shouldn’t let that preclude us from considering what both schools of thought offer as answers to that perennial question: how should we live? Stoicism, an ancient Greek … Continued

A Stoic Response to Beauty

“To see the world in a grain of sand, and heaven in a wild flower; hold infinity in the palm of your hand, and eternity in an hour.” — William Blake, ‘Auguries of Innocence’ The Stoics aren’t exactly famous for their ideas about beauty, and it is easy to understand why. Being champions of reason … Continued

Memento Mori Tattoos and Inspiration

There was a tradition in ancient Rome to celebrate the return of a victorious military general with a drawn out spectacle to sanctify the triumphant leader. On the day of his parade, the victor wore a crown and a purple, gold-adorned toga, otherwise reserved for kings. His four-horse chariot parted the streets lined with thanks-givers … Continued

History of Memento Mori

The one perennial truth – rich or not, successful or not, religious, philosophical, it doesn’t matter – you will die. From the beginning of time to the end, death is the one universal inescapable commonality. Kings or peasants, brilliant or stupid, everyone dies or is dead. Some try not to think about it. But for … Continued

Learning From Bad Examples

Sometimes readers of the DailyStoic.com (practicing Stoics!) get upset when a politically incorrect or controversial example is used in these emails. Why did you tell that story about Winston Churchill? He was an imperialist! Lincoln was a racist! Rockefeller polluted the environment! Jesus wasn’t real! Peter Thiel’s not a Stoic! What does Hillary Clinton have … Continued

What Building a Country Requires

It’s July 4th, 1776. Think about where America was in that moment: Blood in the streets. A revolution against an empire. Families ripped apart because a war forced them to choose sides. Hopeful successes on the battlefield repeatedly followed by dispiriting defeats. The uncertainty of victory, shrouded in the certainty of death and misery and … Continued

Discourses of Epictetus: Book Summary, Key Lessons and Best Quotes

Discourses by Epictetus is a work that only survived thanks to a student named Arrian, who’s credited with transcribing the lessons he learned in Epictetus’ classroom at the beginning of the second century AD. Arrian wrote in a letter prior to the Discourses’ publishing, “whatever I used to hear him say I wrote down, word … Continued

Good Men Can’t Just Do Nothing

Around 1998, Miep Gies supplied a small note to be appended to the end of a forthcoming biography of Anne Frank. It was completely fitting that Gies have the last word on Anne Frank, given all that she had risked and sacrificed between 1942 and 1944 to provide for and supply Frank’s family as they hid … Continued