Five core ideas from Stoicism

marcus-aureliusFive core ideas from Stoicism; for the athlete, for the soldier, for all of us

1. Strive to live in accordance with nature, both nature as the environment and human nature (presumed to be rational).
“This thou must always bear in mind, what is the nature of the whole, and what is my nature.” Marcus Aurelius (Meditations)

2. Attend to that which you have control over, and be indifferent to all else.
“Make the best use of what is in your power, and take the rest as is happens. Some things are up to us and some thinks are not up to us.” Epictetus (Enchiridion)

3. Live according to the four cardinal virtues – wisdom, justice, courage and temperance.
“Virtue is a habit of the mind, consistent with nature, and moderation, and reason. … It has then four divisions – prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance.” Cicero (On Invention)

4. Hardship cannot be avoided, but we can accommodate, adapt and come out stronger.
“The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.” Marcus Aurelius (Meditations)

5. Make most of now, live in the present; carpe diem.
“We live only in the present, in this fleet-footed moment. The rest is lost and behind us, or ahead of us and may never be found.” Marcus Aurelius (Meditations)

Learn more about Stoicism by joining Pretoria Stoics at our next meeting on Monday 25 March, see the previous post. Please RSVP to

About Dr Leon Stander

Dr. Leon Stander is a sport and performance psychology consultant who specialises in psychological skills training (PST) with sportsmen and women, business executives and individuals who wish to benefit by such training. He presents group workshops, as well as individual mentoring and counselling. Current fields of interest and study are behavioural economics, sport psychology and Stoicism. Veteran sportsman, participates mainly in action shooting sports.
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