How to Deal with Tragedy – Stoicism | Philosophy Tube


Tragedy happens all the time. You get your heart broken, your laptop get stolen, you fail your audition. Whatever it is, you might have been advised to be stoic about it. We have this idea that being stoic means being emotionnally detached and not letting life get you down. And that’s interesting because stoicism with a capital S is a philosophical word. Stoicism is litterally ancient, it’s a school of thought from the Hellenistic period that’s after the death of Alexander the Great in 323 B.C. and after Socrates Plato and Aristotles but before the Roman empire. There were a lot of early Stoics and they didn’t always agree and we only have fragments of what some of them wrote. So what I’m about to tell you might be a little bit distilled down or historically contentious. We begin in the ancient Athens and the raison it’s called Stoicism is because one of its founders Zeno of Citium, used to teach under a covered walkway in the athenian agora, the public square in town and the greek word for one of these covered walkways was “stoa”. So why did the Stoics think that you shouldn’t be emotional and shouldn’t let misfortune upset you ? And did they really think that or is it a kind of simplification ? Well, in order to understand the Stoics, we need to understand their metaphysics. In order to understand the Stoics, we have to understand their metaphysics their picture of what the world was like and what exists in it They thought that matter, stuff, was all that existed, time and space and the meaning of words subsist they depend on matter for their existence, but they don’t really exist on their own. Despite being pretty materialistic, the Stoics did believe in a god, but it wasn’t a god outside the universe and it wasn’t a personal god like a lot of modern religions had. They thought that god was in the universe, everywhere and at all times. Matter, stuff, just exists on its own but god is the organizing principle that orders all matter and causes everything, even the tiniest event, to happen according to its design. God for the Stoics was less like a person and more like, the Force. God is made of “pneuma” which translates has “breath” which is a fiery element that pervades all things and organizes and orders everything. You have a little bit of pneuma in you, your rational soul/mind is made of it in that way, you are like a little piece of god. The Stoics were pretty deterministic in their metaphysics as well. God is maximally rational and therefose it orders the universe maximally rationally and if the universe is ordered in a maxmially rational way there should be, and could be no deviation from that perfect plan, none of these free whale or branching realities stuff here buddy. By the way if you studied any Christian theology, which I have, you might recognize that pneuma is quite similar to the Early Christian idea of logos, or the word the embodied will of God. In christianity, logos gets made into a person, Jesus, and it’s only one aspect of God. You might also recognize the importance of breath, as in breathing life into things these were not new ideas when the Church fathers thought of them they were drawing on, among other things, Stoicism. Being a Stoic isn’t just believing their metaphysics, it’s a way of life. You don’t believe Stoicism, you live it. It’s supposed to be a manual for the good life. The good life is one that is happy but happiness, for the Stoics, doesn’t mean pleasure or even necessarily what we mean by happiness. Now it might sound a little confusing, but the problem arises from transletting the greek word “eudaimonia”. A lot of greek philosophies, including stoicism, have eudaimonia as their end goal it’s usually translated as happiness but “human flourishing” might be a more accurate sense of what it really means Eudaimonia is whatever the good life consists in A lot of Greeks thought the purpose of philosophy was to identify specifically what eudaimonia was and also how to reach it. Eudaimonia for the stoics meant a life filled with virtue and the only virtue they thought, the only thing that was always good without any qualification was being rational Okay, so we have to be rational, but how do we know what being rational involves ? Well god designed the universe perfectly rationally so in order to be rational, and therefore virtuous and therefore live the good life all we have to do, is accord our will with the universe. This includes, but is not limited to, attending to the needs you were born with God deigned you to need food, water and shelter and companionship so accord your will with nature seek those things out. It also includes a certain amount of attending to the needs of others Humans are social creatures, the concerns of other matters to us, that’s part of what being social means so don’t neglect the needs of other people. There is a lot of flexibility built into stoic ethics, sometimes you might have to make trade-offs or sometimes actions that look irrational in certain circumstances can actually be the rational thing to do in others. There isn’t one hard and fast formula for living the stoic life. There is this caracterization of Stoics as emotionless, and it does have some basis in the philosophy. The Stoics thought that you should be without passions, “pathe”, litterally : things that you undergo as opposed to : things that you do. You can’t choose most of your emotions they just happen to you someone breaks your heart and you get sad, you don’t choose for that to happen it just does. But the Stoics said that your soul is made of pneuma, this fiery controlling substance and therefore you should be in control of your emotions, they souldn’t be in control of you. And that will involve curbing your passions. It’s kind of being like Spock. Spock does have emotions, you can hurt his feelings he’s not a robot but he’s a Vulcan, and he thinks that he should control his emotions rather than let his emotions control him. The Stoics thought in particular that you need to control your desire, your pleasure and your fear since they are very good at carrying your reason away and being difficult to rein in they are the most irrational passions. You can still have some emotions like benevolence towards other people that’s appropriate, that’s in line with nature or even a small amount of joy. You don’t have to be totally cold-hearted. So we see how the idea of the detached Stoics who don’t let things bother them does have some purchase in the philosophy. When bad things happen to a Stoic, they don’t let their emotions control them, they rein them in and they realize that the universe is maximally rational, and therefore they should just go with it. Stoicism was a pervasive idea, it became quite popular in ancient Rome. Caesar Augustus, Cicero and Brutus, that is stabby Brutus who killed Julius Ceasar all had a fondness for stoicism at one stage or another in their lives. We’ve already seen how it affected early Christian thought. The medieval christian idea of natural law also have some roots in Stoicism. Some later stoics like Marcus Aurelius enjoyed a revival in Victorian England and contributed to the idea of emotionally reserved stiff upper-lip Brit which Britain is still dealing with today, mainly thanks to the work of my dad. You might also be aware of the supposed dichotomy between reason and emotion this quite sexist dichotomy which has done a lot of damage over history and which is still a part of partiarcal thinking today. Yeah, that has roots in stoicism too. Of course if you don’t believe the Stoic metaphysics it might now be a little bit more difficult for you to be stoic with a small S about your problems. Sorry. What do you guys think of Stoicism ? Can you think of any arguments for it that maybe don’t rely on their metaphysics ? Next time we could either talk about hedonism or we could do “should the prisoners get the vote ?” So leave a comment telling me what you’d like to see next time and for more philosophical videos every Friday, please subscribe. This epiode was sponsored by audible.com if you go to audibletrial.com/philosophytube then you can get a free 30 days try of their audio books service that you can cancel anytime and also a free audio book. Last time we talked about an analogy between the law and comic books. So let’s see guys what you have to say. Patrick Saight said that the episode was quite eurocentric in that he focused on Common Law rather than other forms of law like Civil or Sharia Law. And yes you are quite correct to point that out. The philosopphy of law as it is taught in most western universities, including the one I went to does tend to focus on anglo-american law and that’s probably mainly because it’s mainly written by English speakers and therefore that’s the form of laws they are the most familiar with. It doesn’t all do that but most of it does and sometimes they are changelled on that basis. People do say to these philosophers “maybe this has a narrower focus than you were thinking because it is all so anglo-american”. I don’t think that Ronald Dworkin, the philosopher we were discussing would necessarily have to change anything he said in light of that he could just put it within a qualifier but yeah you are definitely quite correct to point that out. Ian Derk extended the analogy between the law and comic books by saying that sometimes the law can struggle to accomodate new things into its “comic book continuity” like just to take a local example, copyright law is struggling to accomodate some YouTube videos like let’s players and struggling to figure out whether they’re actually transformative or not. Just like comic books can sometimes trying to accomodate a new character or a new idea without raising a whole bunch of question about how they fit into the continuity. I don’t really have a reply to that comment, I just wanted to tell you I thought it was really really clever and I enjoyed reading so thanks. Tyler Graham asks what happens if a judge makes a decision that is out of line with the laws comic book continuity. Well what you’ve hit on there is that the realistic nihilist and although partiarch said slightly more explicitly which is that Dworkin says that when judges make decisions, they need to have a decision that fits with the continuity of the law and the previous cases, that’s called fit and is also a good judgment on its own. It’s fair and it accomodates all the relevant legal principles that’s called substance and its critics have sometimes asked him : how are we supposed to weigh these two things. If we’ve got 2 possible verdicts that the judge could give one has more fit less substance, one has more substance less fit. How are we supposed to choose between them and this is supposed to be a big big problem for him. I have defended him in the past, I don’t fully agree with all of what he says but I do think that you could come back on this point. I said in an essay once that he could prioritize substance because if he prioritized that then that will paint the law in a better light. That will portray the law as being an institution that learns from its mistakes rather than slavishly repeating them. And I think that would work better given what he thinks the purpose of the law is. Chloe Fisher had a similar response and she is actually a student of law so that was very interesting and nice to see. They also said that the ideal judge that Dworkin imagines to make these decisions could not exist because nobody could have infinite time and infinite patience. Well yes you are correct that no such person could exist and Dworkin does anticipate that objection and address it. The thing is that the ideal judgment isn’t really super important for his theories. The ideal judge is there, not as an illustration, that’s slightly more than that but the point of the ideal judge is as a mechanism to explain how legal decisions could be made. He says that when a judge makes a decision there could only be one correct answer, and that is the important bit. There can only be one correct resolution to a legal dilemma. And rather than just leave it there, he then says : Oh and the correct answer is whatever the ideal judge would say It’s just a way of suggesting a mechanism by which that one correct answer could be found But the important thing is that there could be only one. Brett McMullin and Max Schneider asked for a little bit of clarification on why there could be only one correct answer. Well, Dworkin thinks that the law is supposed to coerce people, that is the point of the law and if the law returned to equally good but contradictory verdicts, then it couldn’t coerce anybody it couldn’t say to somebody “You have an obligation to do this” if by its own admission it would be fine if the person did not do that and did something else instead. And that’s not just a bad or an inconvenient consequence that he wants to avoid talking about. He thinks that conceptually it would not make sense for the law to do that because he thinks that the law has this built-in purpose of coercion. If whatever system we were dealing with returned two contradictory verdicts and whatever this system is, healing a law or a mistake has been made somewhere So it’s not just a bad consequence he wants to avoid he actually thinks it would not make sense for the law to do that. That’s all we’ve got time for this week, next week there’s gonna be a very special video on artificial intelligence so come back for that and I will see you then. BYYYYE.

100 Replies to “How to Deal with Tragedy – Stoicism | Philosophy Tube

  1. …please, take your face off the screen
    and stop trying to be recognised.
    The ideas in the topic itself
    are sufficient in themselves
    without this constant need
    for self publicity.
    Vain and tiresome

  2. I don't understand the criticism of Stoicism being sexist or inspiring sexism.
    The philosophy doesn't rely on assuming women are irrational or emotional, just that we should all aim to be rational.

  3. To take it a step further, Stoics don't necessarily believe that bad things happen to them. Rather, all of the good and bad in the universe exist within YOU and it's how you decide to respond to what has happened to you that becomes good or bad. A college football player, for instance, got hit and lost the ability to use his arm for athletics. His doctor told him he'll never use that arm again, but he completely disagreed and told the doctor he'll use that arm for the rest of his life. He became a motivational speaker and talks about that hit he took and all of his NFL dreams going away but the injury actually opened up other doors for him. A very Stoic response indeed. The constant pursuit of excellence in response to an event.

    And to the detachment point. I think it's important to remember that Stoics preach on what we can control. What is in our direct control is actually very little, it's how we respond to a stimulus, either with words or physically. Everything else we can be indifferent to because they are not within our direct control. I don't have to have feelings or opinions on EVERYTHING. I can be indifferent if I choose to be and only focus on my ability to react with high mindedness to all of the events that happen to me.

    Interesting stuff, I love Stoicism and have really embraced its application in my life. It's really amazing.

  4. the rational is used for the emotional. Think about it, everything why do is for pleasure at the end, so why bother and stick to rational thinking only? Why not just enjoy ourselfs and use our rational thinking to maximize pleasure?

  5. how come irrational things like fear can exist when the universe is maximally rational? am I missing something here?

  6. lol 'attending to' should be 'tending to'.

    You don't attend to a party; you just 'attend it'. Equally you don't 'attend' to your garden you 'tend' to it.

  7. There is a reason why Stoicism was popular for about 5 centuries. What Stoicism mostly says is to act in accordance with nature. I believe that letting reason rule over emotion and controlling how you react to situations is very much relevant and useful today.

  8. My father is huge into the practice of Stoicism. As a long-time philosophy professor, he has been stoic for so long that it's second nature to him. Stoicism, for practical purposes, is really just a coping mechanism to stay sane while dealing with life's disappointments and darker side. It has served my father very well for a long time and then, my mother and the love of his life, got cancer, suffered terribly and died. My painful observation is that stoicism works well as a model for pain but only to an extent. It doesn't appear to help much with death/tragedy. The only thing I've seen seem to work with severe grief is the absolute belief in God and His plan. Two months after my mother died, my 40 year old wife got a fluke kidney infection and, despite doctors saying it was not life-threatening, it killed her. Her parents are/were devastated (as am I) but they absolutely believe that their daughter's death was God's will. I don't share those blind beliefs. Any thoughts on stoicism and its relation to death would be welcomed. Thanks for reading my comment.

  9. my argument is one in practicality. if you allow emotions to effect you will not have control of your actions. you're being influenced by a moment that is temporary. as well emotion pure never provide solution just motivation.

  10. Well I mean science has disproven the Stoic claim that time and space don't exist on their own but their philosophy is definitely valid and even some of their materialism is.

  11. Stoicism to me. boils down to two things.. experience .. and acceptance.In any given situation, the solution is not predetermined, and relies heavily of the path you take to solve it. Thus being calm and observant is kind of like the best you can do to use the situation to your advantage ..rather than it dictating the outcome. On doing so, one might learn a great deal about the nature of the solution they presented and, again calmly, analyzing that to come to a perspective of themselves. Self awareness stems from calmness, experience and acceptance, but also believing that there might be several other explanations and paths rather than the one they took, in a sense, having the view that the world is a lot bigger than they would like it to be. I never really realised that I deeply held on to a lot of these principles before knowing about stoicism. Be calm fellow humans. Have faith. It will be okay.

  12. As a Stoic myself, when I think of the metaphysiscs of Stoicism, it seems to me that the ancient Stoics were actually describing what we know today as 'energy.' Energy is basically the Pneuma. So there really is no need for this whole god idea to explain a rational universe. The Universe is rational because of the laws of physics that govern it, and the invisable force of Energy.

  13. seriously can't believe you shoehorned feminist propaganda into your video, made yourself unwatchable as feminism is intellectually bankrupt and therefore I have to question your ability to reason with any insight.

  14. you won a subscriber today simply because you used Avatar clips in this video. Goddamn I love that show

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  16. I was thinking about this and the implications of the universe being 'maximally rational' when I had a thought about Stoicism in relation to the second law of thermodynamics. This law, for anyone who is not aware, essentially states that the universe in the end will be full of useless energy and nothing else. (Paraphrased… heavily.) This state of degrading or useless energy is termed entropy.

    This law explains why time can only flow in one direction. Entropy cannot be reversed – it can only proceed on its path – and therefore time can only flow forward.

    Complex beings, by a small leap of logic, exist to aid in making energy useless. Because energy can neither be created or destroyed, we instead change it, and the universe has nothing against creating complexity if it might one day return to chaos.

    In this way, stoicism could be taken as a belief of rational thought and feeling, continuing our health and happiness as a way to serve the ultimate plan of the universe.

    Kind of uplifting, actually. Have you breathed today? If you have, you've served the universe, so good on you!

  17. ur a smarmy wannabe tv presenter who should not be prattling in public about things he doesn't understand. u also have a very annoying voice. please take yourself off now there's a good boy.

  18. I don't like the way you use God. If it doesn't exist in today's meaning then why choose to use it to give that word popularity.

  19. Hi PT Olly
    Allow me to say this. You present the material with flair. Informative to the fullest. The only thing I found destructive was the type of music as background. This was desruptive and took away from your excellent presentation. If there is a way to change "that" tune, you'll get thumbs up and a prescription. Kind regards, Tanya

  20. If one should "go with it" in stoicism, then shouldn't we also go with difficult emotions too? To me, it seems kind of similar to the Buddhist idea that life is suffering. That does seem to be true and it does seem that the best way through life is to just "go with it." I guess that's also why the old bumper sticker, "Shit Happens," was so popular for a while. That is my motto for life.

  21. although I don't believe in any form of god, a maximally rational universe makes sense and an aversion to irrational thinking seems appropriate. As someone who's ideology is driven significantly by ideas implied by evolution and evolutionary psychology, I very much agree with the Stoic view of following human needs. I'm a nihilist, and I don't believe in true morality, but I'm a little disappointed Stoicism doesn't seem address moral questions. those tend to be my favorite discussions.

  22. I enjoyed this until he mentioned sexist dichotomy and patriarchal thinking. When this is said is he assuming men are rational and women are emotional? So in essence is calling this idea sexist in fact sexist in its own right? 🤔🤔

  23. damn here i was thinking i invented this line of reason tripping on acid in the seven eleven parking lot :/

  24. You are mistaken on one point. Stoicism didn't end at the Roman Empire, but thrived throughout it. Cato the Elder, Cato the Younger, Marcus Aurelius were all notable Roman Stoics.

  25. Its not about repressing your emotions. It's about transforming them. It's about reframing your expectations, reconsidering your interpretation of a situation, coming to a better understanding of reality, and through that understanding, coming to a different emotional stance.

  26. One of the biggest points you missed was to be okay with Murphy's Law anything that can go wrong will go wrong in other words don't let it Define how you feel you're the one that controls your focus your mind you define the world around it and how you feel about it hell even Anthony Robbins the motivational speaker has this in motivational teachings

  27. As a stoic philosophy one difficulty is that when a stoic calls the police officer he does not believe the stoic for not looking upset .

  28. Yeah think again if you think you'll be able to "let go" of your emotions. I've found it best to just accept all your moods and emotions and then NEVER BEAT YOURSELF UP over how you deal with the slings and arrows of fortune. In time you'll be able to likely stabilize yourself but just accept it all as best you can and no better. You didn't ask to be created or to have your parents or environment or DNA so in the end you're not responsible for the trip you're on. So give yourself a break and the benefit of the doubt. And remember, if things get too ugly, the door is always open.

  29. Psycho synth music man. It distracts imo. Like what you have to say never noticed a poor choice of sound before but this was baaad

  30. It’s an interesting study, although I am a life-long Atheist who is lacking the childhood indoctrination essential for belief. So I’m working to employ these ideas without employing any superstitious beliefs, since I am incapable of having belief. I do not even hold belief in the idea of a soul.

    The definition that you present leans more heavily toward religious belief, while the writings of some of the Stoics I’ve read so far do not go this direction.

    Also, I do not see the universe as being a living entity that cares about me, any more than a stone in a garden would care about whether or not I am alive.

    From my perspective, the universe and all it contains simply IS, and there is no one driving the bus. My perspective is that there are no gods in control, and we are alone.

    This does not impede the Stoic idea that once need not worry about those things that we cannot control. I can drop the expectations that I have of so-called “grown adults,” thereby avoiding disappointment when they behave badly. And when I sense that emotions are going to start running away, I can stop, acknowledge it, and focus on breathing to work toward coping.

    I’m open to the idea of there being a god if some kind, just not one that is commercially-available for purchase via human superstition, as that seems highly unlikely. Gods have no need for worship, religion, or praise. A worthy god would not be insecure or be as childish as the likes of Yahweh, and would not care if I wore clothing made of mixed fabrics.

    If I am going to acknowledge a god, then it will be after this god makes contact with me personally, instead of communicating with a few ancient people from thousands of years ago. Until then, I see no reason to hold belief in gods, for if one is present and cares, the. It will speak up, regardless of whether or. It I have belief. And if one does exist, and wishes to not show itself, then it does not matter.

  31. My only real knowledge of Stoicism comes from reading Marcus Aurelius' Meditations so there's a bit of a disclaimer. That said, I think aside from the metaphysics and handling loss, the mindfulness of rationalism, passions, and our part of an organized universe lends to really intriguing thoughts. Aurelius spends a lot of time discussing rehabilitative justice, the cause/effect relationships that join every individual, and essentially laying out an early framework for utilitarianism in a very human way. I actually think his philosophy works as a better form of util. because it strives for the same goal but avoiding the need to quantify pain/pleasure instead focusing on the ripples of consequence our actions cause. Lastly, the focus on finding and trying to perform your "duty" as a function of social and nearly cosmic harmony, and just trying to be aware of and mitigate the times we aren't is I think something we can all use more of, and personally has been the deciding factor in my choice to continue living on more than a few occasions.

  32. Beyond it's metaphysical reliance for "proof" of it's truth and value, I believe it doesn't need them to be a worthwhile philosophical approach and way of approaching life.
    What I mean is: human emotions (while beautiful in many regards) can and do often lead to a lot of self-imposed suffering and rash decision making.
    If we set out to control those emotional urges I believe it would be/is very beneficial to help navigate life. To step back from a circumstance, from an immediate, emotional response can aid in decision making and help achieve a more reasonable response, and ultimately outcome.

    I know from my experience, if I had employed a more Stoic-based response to encountering life's events, and decisions, would have been spared a lot of (in-hindsight) bad decisions and needles suffering.
    While commonly viewed as a "cold approach to life" (in its rationality) by many, I've found it to be beneficial in many regards.

    *Please pardon my punctuation mistakes, I have a TBI.

  33. So I self identify as a stoic aaaaaaaaand I think their metaphysics is utter bullshit. So how have I corrected this contradiction in my mind? Well instead of seeing the universe as entirely rational I see it was entirely random. What stoics get from seeing the world as rational is a sense of calm. We don't need to panic because oh look this is what's meant to happen so therefore I'm just going to not worry about it and just experience it. You get the same thing from seeing the universe as entirely random and unfair. The universe just is. It doesn't care about you or me or anything for that matter. It just exists and things happen. It also doesn't owe me anything there for it's irrational and pointless to get upset or worried about stuff that happen within it. Everything is random so I can just sit back and experience it.

    In other words I've kind of combined the metaphysical of Nialisum and used Stoic ideas and behaviours as a response to dealing with the obserad.

  34. The universe is cold and unfeeling. It has no care if you live or die. Thus getting upset by events outside your control is the ultimate expression of pissing in the wind. So you should just go with it.

  35. I try to stay stoic in the face of tragedy simply due to the idea that when something happens I can't go back and change it. I subscribe to the "accept that which cannot change, change that which can be" line of thinking. So when a family member passes, I mourn but accept the new reality I'm faced with, and move forward.

  36. Layman here, how are your emotions, generated by your nature, not part of the maximally rational universe? And if they are, why should I curb them, keep them in, and not act on them, if acting in harmony with the rational universe is the Stoic way of life?

  37. In the intervening years did you ever do 'should prisoners get the vote?"

    Cos, well, yeah. Notwithstanding counterrevolutionaries, yes

  38. I always considered myself a stoic type, however my approach to it is slightly different. When bad things happen to me that are out of my control, like a dead pet or cancer, I do think:"Just go with it, stay calm, ain't nothing you can do". However its not because i believe the world is absolutely rational, but absolutely chaotic. Same outcome i guess, but it comes from a very different place.

  39. Hmm… I like a lot of what Stoicism has to offer. Not sure I'd whole-sale agree with it. Clearly some problematic thinking has emerged from it (as per your final example). But I think those might be fixable.

  40. I disagree that the dichotomy between emotion and reason is inherently sexist. Perhaps I misunderstood you, but I feel like people take that dichotomy and apply it to male and female, not the other way around. I see the distinction between them most often not in others but in myself. One of my favorite songs is "Cygnus X-1 Book II: Hemispheres" by Rush, which talks about the struggle of these two aspects in an individual, and a struggle that I feel very much in myself. I strive to be reasonable; I desire for myself that I be as rational as possible, and limit the control of my emotions as much as possible, but not eliminate it entirely; Hemispheres is about Balance, and to me the balance that feels the most correct is skewed towards reason; I know that sounds contradictory, but it's less of a "50-50" sort of balance, and more that my brain prefers reason, and domination by my emotions causes me discomfort, so my balance is skewed one way. Does my desire to be as reasonable as possible make me a sexist, just because some people associate the same dichotomy I observe in myself with differences between genders?

  41. This philosphy reminds me of 17th century french moralists like La Rochefoucauld, or Madame de Lafayette (who wasnt 100% a moralist but was pretty into their philosophy) who viewed people's inner lives as a struggle between passion and reason, and thought everyone should lead their lives with virtue, withstanding obligation and suffering because, hey, that's life.

  42. What's to say that there's only one perfect plan though, or that there aren't multiple maximally rational ways of thinking?

  43. One of your better videos. Very accurate and I didn't find any logical fallacies or biases, good job. Go on teaching Stoicism mate!
    (You should talk about Stoic sages or "monks" as well)

  44. If you somehow can actually control your emotions like the Stoics advocate, then it's an obvious utilitarian good to do so, at least when it comes to unpleasant emotions, regardless of whether you believe the Stoic metaphysics. If you can somehow just choose not to feel bad when bad things happen to you, then that means there's less suffering going on, which is good.

  45. If one holds a worldview in which the world is godless and amoral and one acts in favor of their own rational self-interest and strives to overcome all outside restraints on their behavior, would it still be small s stoicism to practice self-control, keeping one's passions from overriding our reason for the sake of attaining one's goals?

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