Endure and Renounce

A new e-booklet has just been published by my personal imprint, so to speak, Figs In Winter. The title, “Endure and Renounce,” comes from a well known passage by Epictetus: “There were two vices much blacker and more serious than the rest: lack of persistence and lack of self-control … Endure and Renounce. (Fragments 10)

The e-booklet is a collection from the first year of my (now archived) blog, How To Be A Stoic. The first post came out on 3 March 2015, and ever since I have used that blog (and now Figs In Winter) as a sort of public diary tracking my explorations of Stoicism, both the ancient philosophy and its developing modern descendant, in terms of theory but especially of practice, which is what makes Stoicism so distinctive in the philosophical landscape.

“Endure and Renounce” collects the best 84 of the essays published from the beginning of the blog through December 2015, and features the following table of contents:

Part I: The historical perspective

A brief history of Stoicism
On the decline of (ancient) Stoicism
Ancient vs modern ethics: a comparison

Part II: Epictetus

Beginning the Discourses
On steadfastness
From Epictetus to Naso
How to do philosophy
Against the Academics and the Epicureans
Of love and friendship
On Cynicism
Epictetus, a bit of an anti-intellectual?
The Fragments
The Handbook

Part III: Marcus

Meditations, Book I
Meditations, Book II
Meditations, Book III
Meditations, Book IV
Meditations, Book V
Meditations, Book VI
Meditations, Book VII
Meditations, Book VIII
Meditations, Book IX
Meditations, Book X
Meditations, Book XI
Meditations, Book XII

Part IV: Ancient writings about the Stoics

Cicero’s De Finibus and the nature of Stoic philosophy, part I
Cicero’s De Finibus and the nature of Stoic philosophy, part II
Why Plato’s Euthydemus is relevant to Stoics
Diogenes Laertius on the Stoics, I: Zeno
Diogenes Laertius on the Stoics, II: Cleanthes
Diogenes Laertius on the Stoics, III: Chrysippus

Part V: Stoic theory

The three Stoic disciplines
Stoic epistemology
Stoic logic
Stoic natural philosophy
Stoic theology
Stoic determinism
Stoic cosmopolitanism and the problem of unmet friends
Stoic virtue ethics, part I
Stoic virtue ethics, part II
(more on) Stoic ethics
Stoic moral psychology
Apatheia vs Ataraxia: what’s the difference?

Part VI: Modern Stoicism

Is belief in God necessary to practice Stoicism?
The three pillars of Stoicism
Negative visualization
The dichotomy of control
The Rise of Stoicism
Stoic Psychological Techniques
Stoic self discomfort and control exercises
Stoic practical advice, I: duty and social relations
Stoic practical advice, II: on insults
Stoic practical advice, III: grief
Stoic practical advice, IV: anger
Stoicism and personal values: fame
Stoicism and personal values: on luxurious living
On surviving a change of place
Stoic old age
On becoming a Stoic
Stoicism reconsidered
On the effects of practicing Stoicism
Atoms vs Providence? Both, really
Don’t judge others, but don’t keep bad company
A New Stoicism, part I
A New Stoicism, part II
A New Stoicism, part III
A New Stoicism, part IV
A New Stoicism, part V
Virtue, Forrest Gump, and Wittgenstein
What Would a Stoic Do? Presidential candidates
What Would a Stoic Do? On terrorism
What Would a Stoic Do? I met a sophist, and it didn’t go well
What Would a Stoic Do? The Stoic’s decision making algorithm
The Stoics vs Ayn Rand
Kant vs Cato
Epictetus was right: modern cognitive science supports the Stoics’ conception of emotions

Part VII: Stoicism and other philosophies

Revisiting the similarities among Stoicism, Epicureanism and Buddhism
Neo-Stoicism and the relationship between Stoicism and Christianity

Part VIII: Stoicism and popular culture

Stoic movie review: Amy
Stoic movie review: The Martian
Stoic movie review: Bridge of Spies
Stoic movie review: Trumbo
What Would a Stoic Do? On entertainment
What Would a Stoic Do? Twitter edition


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Massimo is the K.D. Irani Professor of Philosophy at the City College of New York. He blogs at platofootnote.org and howtobeastoic.org. He is the author of How to Be a Stoic: Using Ancient Philosophy to Live a Modern Life.