The Stoics, Moral And Virtue

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The Stoics, Moral and Virtue

According to the SAR "Happiness is a state of the mood that is pleased in the possession of a good", meanwhile Zeno defined happiness as "the good course of life". Stoicism considers reason as a remedy for disorders of existence, in fact, it is thanks to this reason, specific to the human species, that man can reach happiness (defined as Ataraxia), whatever the circumstances of hislife. The Stoics move away from pleasure and lust and adopt continence and sobriety, going back to the interior of themselves to find happiness or "eudaimonia".

In Stoic Greek thought (Crisipo, Cleantes, Zenón …) True ethics is only attainable in the philosophical system of science. The correct use of reason, through knowledge, makes virtue and happiness possible, which are two sides of the same currency, since scientific knowledge is a condition of virtuous action, and in turn, virtue is unthinkable withoutKnowledge, so that perfecting intellection through scientific knowledge implies molding in virtue;Not because happiness is the reward of a virtuous life, but because the stoic ideal of sage implies that virtuous life is happy. This is because only the wise has a perfect intellection that leads him to act rightly and because he does not allow his affections and passions to influence his actions and his attitude, in this way, he is in a state of complete freedom.

Stoic moral admits the existence of a perfect, incommovible being, that lives in complete happiness, which is pure reason, and that lives, so to speak, in a virtuous attitude level with respect to itself, that is, that it is purevirtue, not subject to any change. Virtue is for the Stoics the only good. Considered as "a constant provision that establishes the individual’s agreement with himself and with nature", in virtue is the realization of man, in this way, between virtue and vice a medium term is not admitted, man is fair orunfair, but not partially fair. In this logic, the virtuous man does everything well and according to nature because he is right as a reference for his performance, at the opposite end is the ignorant, tied to his fears and passions. Happiness is a reason for knowledge precisely because it is the purpose of the existence of men. Crisipo and Cleantes point out "the goal is in happiness and that the end consists in achieving happiness, which is equivalent to being happy" and Zenón indicates that "the end is to live according to virtue", thus, the stoic that aspiresTo be happy, philosophy is the only tool: logic, physics and ethics are presented at the service of man with a clear objective: teach him to live according to his nature.

Stoicism presents the human being as an entity capable of staying imperturbable for the things that happen around them, that is, their joys do not only come from external stimuli and that the difficulties do not pose a defeat or a feeling of frustration. Precisely in the case of stoicism, virtue moves from the naturalistic technical scenario to the level of ethics;Diogenes Laercio points out that: "Virtue is the perfection of anything in general, such as the perfection of a statue". In this way, there will be virtue in a man as he develops with excellence the function that is his own. The ethical virtue is said of men who fully display the operation that is characteristic as men. For his part, Cicero states that "virtue is the same in men and gods and in no other lineage is" and that "virtue is nothing other than perfect nature and taken to its culminating point". To this extent, that man who displays his most distinctive feature will be virtuous.

On this basis, in the virtue themHappiness is shown as discernible, but on the practical level they manifest as identical. Technically, virtue requires excellence with which a man displays his nature, while happiness indicates the way in which the proximity of a man’s behavior is proclaimed regarding a certain ideal of wisdom;While they are not nominally synonymous, in praxis they are identified as such. Since virtue is enough for happiness, it is also to live well, and consequently they are enough to say, they are for them and not for anything else "the virtue to live well, it is enough for itself"(Cicero). To this extent, happiness is not an addition of virtue or this is an annex to that;Their relationship is coinciding precisely because both are preached in the same way of actively inhabiting existence, so that the virtuous man is his happy, and happiness brings virtue;In his excellence, he lies the happiness of men and in the field of actions, excellence in the work coincides with the proximity with respect to the ideal of wisdom. In this regard, Cicero referred to the position of the founder of the philosophy of the porch: “Zenón, therefore, and in no way was he able to cut the nerves of virtue, as theophrastus does, but, on the contrary, he saidEverything that is necessary for happy life in the single virtue ". If virtue is enough for itself in relation to good living, it is precisely because in the practical level it identifies with one’s happiness. Both happiness and virtue are said, then, in a self-sufficient way of being in life. According to this, as soon as we understand that stoic philosophy is inclined to the ethical scenario, happiness in virtue occurs as the ultimate goal of the philosopher “virtues are not only productive goods, but also final, because they produce thehappiness and complete it "

For the Stoic all actions and behaviors are predetermined by a kind of causality that is chained and concludes in the facts;Therefore, the freedom of man is reduced to a mere belief or subjective behavior founded that everything done or will occur independently of his will, therefore, happiness depends on each other’s own actions, which implies that “theman has in himself all the necessary conditions for true happiness;Merit is getting it based on intelligence, will and continued practice. They also support the theory that the human being is not just mind, but that it acts as a bridge towards other more subtle resources of consciousness and inner development, so true happiness needs to practice the will, introduce new habits, integrate new patternsof thought, feeling and action and unifying them. Achieve inner coherence and practice "virtue" understood as an attitude of doing the most correct at all times, of getting the best out of oneself, the best, the most noble, the most fair and the most beautiful. In short, be living examples of the difficult art of living. 

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