Throughout history, mankind has always been interested in understanding how past events shaped our present. From studying the Roman Empire to comprehending the Industrial Revolution, historians have attempted to explain why things happened when they did and what led to them happening as such. Whether you're a student or a hobbyist, we can all learn something from revisiting ancient wisdom and applying it to modern situations.
This video is a fantastic story from the book, Daylight Robbery, narrated by the author himself, Dominic Frisby.
After it was agreed by a Greek general assembly to begin an expedition against Persia, Alexander the Great was proclaimed as their leader. Many Greek statesmen and philosophers went to congratulate him. Alexander expected Diogenes of Sinope to be one of those offering him congratulations but the philosopher did not pay any attention to him, choosing instead to do some sunbathing in a nearby suburb.
When he was a young man, Julius Caesar was travelling across the Aegean Sea to the Island of Rhodes, when he was accosted by pirates. These pirates kidnapped Caesar and demanded a ransom for him, keeping him prisoner on an island they called home until the payment was met.
One of the most advocated routines by the Stoics is to take time to look inward, examine, and reflect. The best times to do that? In the morning after rising and in the evening before you go to bed.
The philosophy of Stoicism was practised by people from all classes of Roman society. From slaves like Epictetus to high ranking advisors such as Seneca. Even an Emperor of the Roman Empire itself, Marcus Aurelius, became a Stoic and towards the end of his life, wrote one of the greatest works of philosophy - a series of private notes and ideas now commonly known as Meditations.
Letters from a Stoic is a collection of 124 letters the philosopher Seneca wrote to his friend, Lucilius. They are packed full of wisdom and guidance. Written below is some of the advice that impacted me the most when I read the letters, with an explanation of how each quote is still relevant in today’s modern world.
The ancient philosophy of Stoicism was practiced by people at the very top of society in the Roman empire, from powerful advisors to the very wealthy and even the emperor himself. However, one of the most important Stoics came from the opposite end of the spectrum. Born into slavery, Epictetus was later granted his freedom. He then devoted his life to philosophy, lecturing in Rome before setting up his own school in Greece. His teachings were written down by one of his pupils and much of that work survives to this day, known as the Discourses of Epictetus.
When discussing whether it is better to be feared or loved, Machiavelli talks of two great military leaders: the Roman General Scipio Africanus and the Carthaginian General Hannibal.
In this essay we see Machiavelli highlighting how the Romans used a successful strategy in Greece to grow their empire.