David Fideler, author of Breakfast with Seneca, and Michael Trembly of the Stoa App, discuss the deeper dimensions of Stoicism—those things that make Stoicism into a real philosophy of life.
For some readers today, Stoicism stopped being a real philosophy of life. Instead, it became a collection of psychological “life hacks” to help individuals get by in an uncertain world. And while there is nothing wrong with those psychological techniques (or becoming more psychologically resilient), this isn’t the way that Seneca, Epictetus, or Marcus Aurelius saw Stoicism as a philosophy.
In this conversation, David Fideler and Michael Tremblay discuss Seneca on crowd psychology, love, the universal brotherhood of humanity, authenticity, death, grief, and gratitude. We also explore the notion of deep and flat Stoicism, flat stoicism being a shallow or superficial view of Stoicism concerned with making us feel better, and deep Stoicism being a comprehensive life philosophy that involves both being happy, and having an obligation to help others.
Anyone interested in learning more about Seneca’s approach to Stoicism, and the deeper foundations of Stoicism, will find value in this discussion.
Listen to the conversation by clicking the link below.
David Fideler is the author of Breakfast with Seneca and holds a PhD in philosophy. He’s also the editor of the Living Ideas Journal, which explores how the humanities can contribute to the world and deepen our experience of being alive.
Michael Tremblay learned about Stoicism in a college seminar and went on to earn a PhD in philosophy. He’s part of the team behind the Stoa app for iPhone and Android, and he considers his study of Stoicism to have made him a happier, better person.
This conversation is brought to you courtesy of Stoa.
You can hear the first Stoa conversation with David here, where David and Michael discuss Seneca not only as a philosopher, but as a proto-psychologist.