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**Historical Overview of Stoicism**
– Founded by Zeno of Citium around 300 BC in Athens
– Derived its name from the Stoa Poikile in Athens
– Initially popular among the educated elite in the Hellenistic world and Roman Empire
– Divided into Early, Middle, and Late phases
– Declined after Christianity became the state religion in the 4th century AD

**Philosophical Tenets of Stoicism**
– Emphasizes virtue as the path to a well-lived life
– Teaches self-control to overcome destructive emotions
– Focuses on ethics, logic, and naturalistic ethics
– Promotes acceptance, resilience, and moral well-being
– Espouses a deterministic perspective with an autonomous individual will

**Stoic Logic and Categories**
– Developed propositional logic by Diodorus Cronus
– Chrysippus developed Stoic logic including Stoic Syllogistic
– Stoic logic covers various topics like sentence analysis, logical consequence, and modal logic
– Believed all beings are material and recognized four incorporeals
– Extended Anaxagoras’ concepts different from Aristotle

**Stoic Influence and Legacy**
– Alongside Aristotelian ethics, forms a major approach to virtue ethics
– Believed virtue is the only good for humans and emphasized living in accordance with nature
– Influence seen in early Christian writers and Neoplatonism
– Stoicism’s legacy includes criticism by Plotinus and acceptance by Scholastic philosophy

**Modern Applications and Influence**
– Modern usage refers to repressing feelings or enduring patiently
– Revival in the 20th century linked to interest in virtue ethics
– Contemporary Stoicism influenced by Albert Ellis and Aaron T. Beck
– Inspired modern cognitive psychotherapy and cognitive therapy for depression
– Stoicism’s influence described in various psychological and psychotherapeutic approaches

Stoicism (Wikipedia)

Stoicism is a school of Hellenistic philosophy that flourished in Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. The Stoics believed that the practice of virtue is enough to achieve eudaimonia: a well-lived life. The Stoics identified the path to achieving it with a life spent practicing the four virtues in everyday life: wisdom, courage, temperance or moderation, and justice, and living in accordance with nature. It was founded in the ancient Agora of Athens by Zeno of Citium around 300 BC.

A bust of Zeno of Citium, considered the founder of Stoicism

Alongside Aristotle's ethics, the Stoic tradition forms one of the major founding approaches to virtue ethics. The Stoics are especially known for teaching that "virtue is the only good" for human beings, and that external things, such as health, wealth, and pleasure, are not good or bad in themselves (adiaphora) but have value as "material for virtue to act upon". Many Stoics—such as Seneca and Epictetus—emphasized that because "virtue is sufficient for happiness", a sage would be emotionally resilient to misfortune. The Stoics also held that certain destructive emotions resulted from errors of judgment, and they believed people should aim to maintain a will (called prohairesis) that is "in accordance with nature". Because of this, the Stoics thought the best indication of an individual's philosophy was not what a person said but how a person behaved. To live a good life, one had to understand the rules of the natural order since they believed everything was rooted in nature.

Stoicism flourished throughout the Roman and Greek world until the 3rd century AD, and among its adherents was Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius. It experienced a decline after Christianity became the state religion in the 4th century AD. Since then, it has seen revivals, notably in the Renaissance (Neostoicism) and in the contemporary era (modern Stoicism).

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