Letters From a Stoic by Seneca: Book Summary, Key Lessons and Best Quotes

Seneca was a prominent Roman philosopher and playwright who published several essential works about Stoicism. He is considered one of the three key Stoic philosophers (alongside Marcus Aurelius and Epictetus), counseled Emperor Nero, and is often credited with rendering Stoicism more accessible to a larger audience than his counterparts. You can read a longer profile … Continued

“What’s Wrong With This Person?”

When you inevitably get frustrated with someone today, remember this line from Anthony de Mello: “The question to ask is not, ‘What’s wrong with this person?’ but ‘What does this irritation tell me about myself?’” This question—this pause and then reversal—is an essential element of Stoicism. It goes back to Epictetus who said that we are complicit in … Continued

Taking Stoicism Beyond the Self: The Power To Change Society

Distilled into one empowering message – take control and responsibility for your own thoughts and actions – Stoicism will set you on a course for personal fulfilment, regardless of the wealth, health or skillset you have at your disposal. No wonder it has all the hallmarks of a highly successful entrepreneurial programme or bestselling personal … Continued

Forgiving Those Who Trespass Against Us

In 1993, Joseph Cardinal Bernardin, the then-Archbishop of Chicago, was accused of having molested a young man in Philadelphia some two decades earlier. Unfortunately, this is an old story with an all-too familiar ending: A Catholic priest who abused his trust and authority to take advantage of a vulnerable young person. Right? And of course … Continued

How To Stop Caring What Other People Think

The secret from Marcus Aurelius for when we get flak or insults or judgement from other people? He said we should look inside their soul. “Get inside him,” Marcus wrote. “Look at what sort of person he is. You’ll find you don’t need to strain to impress him.” His point was that too often we blindly “accept” … Continued

Do You Know What Envy Is?

The writer Walker Percy, one of the so-called Southern Stoics, would ask and answer that question. “Jealousy,” he said, “is an alteration in the very shape of time itself. Time loses its structure. Time stretches out.” Because we become so consumed, we lose the ability to think of anything else. Our chest tightens and every other track … Continued