Existentialism in Stoic Quotes: Part 2

I decided to separate the list of quotes I’ve compiled into different posts because it brought a lot more to mind than I thought it would. I can only assume these posts get you thinking something as well… like it or not. Which is a perfect intro to the first quote of this post.

LIKE IT OR NOT, YOU HAVE TO BELIEVE IN YOURSELF

“Not to assume it’s impossible because you find it hard, but to recognize that if it is humanly possible, you can do it too.”

MARCUS AURELIUS. 121AD – 180AD. stoic philosopher

When we are depressed, lonely and pessimistic, it does seem impossible to become happy. Not only because it’s hard but because we assume we will no longer feel happy again. This quote can be put to any feeling or action you choose, not just happiness, but success, intelligence and gratitude. They are all humanly possible, if you are human (yes, you are) you can achieve this. In my first post of stoic quotes, I mentioned how depressed I was in my teen years. Thinking back on all those times I didn’t believe in myself, it coincided with how I terribly I felt about myself. Even when I had people who cared about me and really did the best they could to believe in me at my all-time-low it didn’t seem to matter when I didn’t care or believe in myself. The people in my life at the time, grew faster than I did and weren’t in my life anymore. Soon I didn’t have anyone believing in me and couldn’t push anyone else away but myself. If you are skeptical, and don’t believe in believing, take a look at the placebo effect and come back to me. If you are in a bad spot right now, reach out, don’t destroy yourself. Both stoicism and existentialism can agree that positive thinking is a choice we make, and a very important one I’ve been learning.

BE GRATEFUL

“It is essential to make oneself used to putting up with a little. Even the wealthy and well provided are continually met and frustrated by difficult times and situations. It is in no man’s power to have whatever he wants; but he has it in his power not to wish for what he hasn’t got, and cheerfully make the most of the things that do come his way.”

SENECA. 4BC – 65AD. stoic philosopher

The more I observe life around me, the more I realize humans will always want something. (See my post desire and less in more). Take my own life for example, five years ago I wanted somewhere to live because I was homeless and dealing drugs for money. Four years ago, I wanted a car so I could make money faster to get better housing. Three years ago, I wanted to find a stable job, a better relationship. Two years ago, I wanted a car; still because I hadn’t got one and also to start my own website. One year ago, I had just gotten my car and really wanted to get this blog going; for real. Now, I have a car, clearly I’m writing on my blog and now I really want to pursue the art therapy business but I’m stuck at a crossroads. What is worth wanting? At some point you can see, if we truly do need these things in life, such as housing and a stable job. What does that say to what we want? Even when we have things we need we still want more. I truly don’t believe human desire (greed) will never end because as an existentialist we will always try to find a meaning to life. Ultimately if greed didn’t exist, and we didn’t explore the ways to have meaning in our own lives, there would be a huge spike in suicide rates globally.

LIVE NOW, FOR THERE IS NO OTHER TIME.

“Focus on the moment, not the monster that may or may not be up ahead.”

RYAN HOLIDAY. 1987 – PRESENT. author + entrepreneur

The classic “live in the present” quote from a modern day person. It hits though, mostly because it’s true. If you have the time to spare in your life to watch a movie; A Walk Among The Tombstones. There are many philosophical references I found in there, and this quote also seems to fit the plot line. I think I’ve said enough, but I feel I should close with my own quote…

“Within every individual is the choice to commit to life or death. Everything in between is all fun and play.”

emriyus. 2021

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Published by emriyus

I am human, just like you. I have been around for almost 20 years and although it may not be a lot of time to some, it feels like I've been alive forever. To cope with all the things my life has given me; good and bad, I've always been a writer. Maybe I didn't know or necessarily want to be a writer, but I was always on the creative side, not really understanding how different I was from others; I'm really not that different from you. To this day I'm still eager to learn more about myself, to improve and grow amorphously. I want to use this fuel of constant self-discovery as the direct source of 'energy' that can create whatever I want it to, making writing for me a healthier coping mechanism than most I've tried in my lifetime. That being said, I believe that starting my blog, The Existentialist, (all thanks to Wordpress and Bluehost teams) I finally have the opportunity and creative outlet to unleash my passion for art; writing. The beginning is never easy, and it won't get much easier I am aware. I can only believe in myself and keep my expectations to a minimum; I like to believe I hold no expectations, but they seem unavoidable. To whoever reads this, I'm not one to care about views or reads, I won't encourage/pressure you to read my work because for me, the thrill really comes from just making a finished piece of work I'm happy with, regardless if it is read by others or not; judgement from others is what I've feared all my life. I can only encourage you to have an open mind as a reader and believe in me as much as I believe in myself to accumulate the courage to start showing my creative writing(art) to the world. Everybody creates things in their lifetime, I am just another one of those beings; whether you like it or not, nouns (persons, places and 'things') exist to teach us something about ourselves. There is always more to learn...

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