Roman Calendar

Monday, November 25, 2013

Stoic Week Morning Meditation - Day 1

     Today is the beginning of Stoic Week 2013. As a practicing Stoic, I do have my own routines and practices that I use, but I am trying out the "official ones" for Stoic Week 2013. Here is an excerpt from the Stoic Week Handbook on the morning exercises:

"When you wake up each morning, take a few moments to compose yourself and then patiently rehearse the day ahead, planning how you can make yourself a better person, while also accepting that some things lie beyond your control.

1.             Marcus Aurelius talks about walking on one's own to a quiet place at daybreak and meditating upon the stars and the rising Sun, preparing for the day ahead. You can also do this at home, sitting on the end of your bed, or standing in front of the mirror in your bathroom, and still think of the sun rising against a backdrop of stars.

2.             Pick a specific philosophical principle that you want to rehearse and repeat it to yourself a few times before imagining how you could put it into practice during the rest of the day. You might choose the key general Stoic theme: “Some things are under our control whereas others are not”, and to think about giving more importance to being a good person and acting well and treating things you cannot control as ultimately much less important.

3.             Alternatively, you might pick a specific virtue that you want to cultivate and prepare yourself mentally for your day ahead, in broad outline, imagining how you would act if you showed more wisdom, justice, courage, or moderation.

4.             Practise this meditation for about 5-10 minutes, picking out key events or specific challenges that might arise.

Once you’ve got into the habit of doing this, try imagining greater challenges in the day ahead such as some of your plans not going as you hope and dealing with difficult people. As you consider a possible difficulty, think about how you could tackle it with a Stoic principle or virtue."

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