If you’re looking for a new book to read, perhaps one that will teach you something new about stoic philosophy, then check out the works of Lucius Annaeus Seneca. Also known as “the Spanish Stoic,” this philosopher believed in constant change and improvement. In this article, we’ll discuss the great life lessons that you might learn from reading about Seneca’s life and work. Let’s get started.
One of the first things that you’ll learn about Seneca is his incredible adaptability. He rose from being a nobody to a very important person in Rome during a time of great upheaval. Although he was born in 55 AD, he didn’t begin teaching until he was 40 years old. He worked his way up from a low-ranking job to a very important and respected position in his community. Even when he was very established and had a lot of power, he continued to learn new things and improve himself.
As we’ve established, Seneca was a very adaptable person. This quality served him well in his line of work. He had to be, considering he was teaching a popular and influential philosophy during a time of great change. He also had to be creative, since he usually had to write his philosophical works on-the-spot while teaching. This means that he had to come up with witty sayings and illustrations while in front of a classroom full of students. (This might explain his many, many jokes in his work.)
Even when he wrote books, he wouldn’t leave any stone unturned in his research. He would read all of the previous works by other philosophers, then go back and meticulously study each one of their methods. This helped him to come up with his own unique style of teaching, which he felt confident enough to experiment with.
Duality is another important quality that you’ll learn about in reading about Seneca’s life. This philosopher believed strongly in constant self-evaluation, which is why he studied and practiced logic and rhetoric regularly. These are the study of how to argue and debate, which are very handy skills to have. While he believed that nothing is absolutely fixed, he also believed that we should constantly be assessing ourselves and our situations. We should always be thinking and rethinking, reviewing and reappraising, and never feeling satisfied with what we’ve achieved or done.
Duality also influenced Seneca’s teachings. He believed that we should not only evaluate ourselves on a personal level, but on an ethical and social level as well. This is why he practiced philanthropy and why he wrote so many books on ethics and social issues. He wanted to help and guide people to be better and more thoughtful citizens of the world. He taught that everyone had a role to play in order to create a better society. Everyone, including teachers, businesspeople, and even entire families, have a role to play in order to make the world a better place. He truly believed that everyone could make an impact and that we should all be working toward a common goal. These are just a few of the life lessons that you’ll learn from reading about Seneca’s incredible life and work!