Interviews

Bestselling Author Bonnie Tsui On Why We Swim, Becoming More Present, And The Practice Of Confronting Mortality

In his letters, Seneca writes that he started every year by taking a cold swim. He described himself as the “cold-water enthusiast.” And “just as naturally as I would set out to do some reading or writing, or to compose a speech,” he said he loved to take “a plunge into the Virgo aqueduct [present …

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Tracing The Force Of Habit Through The History Of Philosophy: An Interview With Dr Clare Carlisle Tresch

It’s one of the most haunting passages in Seneca‘s writings. He says if you were to stop most people as they were going about their day, and “you ask one of them…‘Where are you going? What do you have in mind?’ he will reply, ‘I really don’t know.’” So many people, he continues, unthinkingly gravitate from …

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Blind Paralympian Verity Smith On The Core Stoic Teaching, Finding Inner Tranquility, And Transcending Physical Limitations

This is our second interview with the great Verity Smith—a blind international dressage rider, singer, songwriter, author, and longtime student and practitioner of Stoicism. Verity was told at the age of eight that she would soon lose her vision. Attributing her youthful innocence, Verity’s response was one of optimism if not enthusiasm. ‘Going blind’—it sounded, …

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How To Think Like Shakespeare: An Interview With Scott Newstok

Frustrated by modernity’s approach to education and the way we think of thinking, award-winning professor, author, and parent Scott Newstok set out to demystify the making of one of history’s greatest minds and unlock the keys to intellectual brilliance in his masterful new book How To Think Shakespeare. A teacher at Rhodes College and the founding …

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Nonconformity, Self-Reliance, And Starting Over: An Interview With Bestselling Author Chris Guillebeau

Epictetus tells us about how the Stoic Agrippinus was like a red thread, the piece of fabric that stands out. People often asked Agrippinus why he couldn’t just be “normal,” why he couldn’t just be like everyone else. “And if I do that,” Agrippinus liked to answer, “How shall I any longer be the red?” …

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The Power Of Consistency: An Interview With Behavior Change Expert And Bestselling Author Stephen Guise

The Stoics believed that in an unpredictable world, order is a prerequisite of excellence and good habits are a safe haven of certainty. They were all about systems, routines, and repetition. It wasn’t just about knowing what the right thing was, it was about doing it daily. Fueling the habit bonfire, they said. It was …

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Understanding And Responding To Natural Catastrophe: An Interview With Anthony Long

Marcus Aurelius wrote in his diary at some point during the Antonine plague—which spanned fifteen years of his reign—that history has a way of repeating itself. “To bear in mind constantly that all of this has happened before,” he said in Meditations. “And will happen again.” We had the opportunity to talk to Anthony Long—University …

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