The stoics perspective on bad endings

In the pursuit of happiness, perfection is overtaking our everyday rituals in ways that create more miseries than intended. It seems as if today’s perception of the theory of right action in maximising our happiness and pleasure is merely on the right track. It is as though everyone is too prone to indiscretion. Most of us think of our lives as being more distasteful than the next person around, BUT of course won’t admit it before the masses. I mean who would? Social suicide is a real deal in the new hashtag generation. ONLY IF WE DID THOUGH…life would have been so much easier, don’t you think??

In the pursuit of happiness, one must have heard of the philosophical doctrine known as stoicism. In layman’s terms, the doctrine means the endurance of pain or hardship without a display of feelings and complaint. On the other side, the anointed elite liberals will complicate things as they normally would, claiming that the doctrine implies happiness and judgment are to be based on behaviour, rather than words; that we don’t control and cannot rely on external events, only ourselves and our responses. Only if it was easily attainable…life would have been so much appealing, don’t you think??

In the pursuit of happiness, the stoics will tell you “Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present.” – credits to the Emperor Marcus Aurelius’ (161-180AD) quotes. Back to my point, the stoics claim that sometimes even if we know or believe that the future is doomed, or we are bound to fail, or that rationally speaking there’s no point of doing something in which the odds are more than ninety-nine percent against you; one should still pursue it. Because in the words of my late granny, ‘it is in the most unexpected moments that we find the most cherishable moments’. Only if we all we had this kind of mentality…life would have been so much trouble-free, don’t you think??

In the pursuit of happiness, the stoics will tell you that it is okay to take calculated risks. Sometimes they will even disregard the ‘calculated’ part, making it a more risk inclined narrative to the numbers where the majority are risk averse. Seems unreasonable right?… Not too fast my friend. In the baby boomer generation moving forwards, isn’t everyone’s fantasy of the perfect guy or girl compiled with a partner who’s sweet yet unpredictable, loving yet adventurous, humble yet brave, etcetera, etcetera. All these attributes align with a risk taking or even a deliberately risk-seeking individual. We all want to feel safe with our partners, yet desire dangerous traits in them. Only if we were all not brainwashed by romantic novels and Hollywood’s narrative of a perfect guy/girl, and knew what we actually wanted…life would have been so much glamorous, don’t you think??

In the pursuit of happiness, the stoics will tell you bad endings is a myth. As with every comparison based adjunct, no word has a concrete connotation. Everyone’s interpretation of bad endings will vary from somebody else’s, as the term has a relative undertone intertwined with one’s knowledge, experiences and beliefs. Remember just like the stoics will tell you that judgments are to be based on behaviour not words; we must all understand that we don’t have control over external events. What’s the point of whining about what’s out of one’s control anyway? So if we are to focus on ourselves and our responses, then we will have no grievances from the bad endings. And what if we are anticipating a bad ending before committing? One might ask. The stoics will tell you to hell with it, roll up your sleeves, and go with it. After all, there is no absolute certainty in anticipation. Only if we always acted informatively. Only if we put our knowledge into daily use…life would have been so much angelical and wholesome, don’t you think??

~Cem~(01/05/2017)

Author: Mr.Clevance

I am starting this journey as a self-realization process that I have been meaning to do years now. I hope it changes and inspires you as it will to me.

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