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[Jun. 22nd, 2005|08:40 pm]
existentialists
existentialists
[_tigercommie]
Are there any differences between Existentialism and Stoicism?

EDIT: I realized that if I keep asking vague questions I'll only end up with vague answers. What I mean is "What are the major differences between the two? Does Stoicism encompass all/most of the traits of Existentialism, or visa versa?"

That's probably still pretty vauge, but I hope it will leave me more informed than my original question.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: drtao
2005-06-23 01:54 am (UTC)
Historically? Many.

Otherwise? Many.
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[User Picture]From: drtao
2005-06-23 02:12 am (UTC)
Well, my answer was pre-edit. Carry on ;-)

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From: _tigercommie
2005-06-23 02:47 am (UTC)
And the very reason for the edit.
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[User Picture]From: eumachina
2005-06-23 02:36 am (UTC)
well i consider myself sort of both, so i don't think there are any logical contradictions between being both, of course.
your run-of-the-mill existentialist knows that the material world doesn't let on to its meaning - hence the absurd. a stoic would say that this is because the material world doesn't really have much in the way of meaning - to the effect that being affected by material things/events is absurd. an existentialist, though, would say that just because the material world isn't letting anybody in on its secret, doesn't mean that there isn't one, and certainly doesn't mean that people can't find out what it is from their experiences.
and yes, i realize that i'm sort of summarizing the two belief systems' relations to eachother in a warped way based on my own beliefs, but that's what i think. i think stoicism is just one of many directions to go as an existentialist.
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From: _tigercommie
2005-06-23 02:50 am (UTC)
So I could say that the Existentialist is a little more of a materialist than the Stoic?
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[User Picture]From: jackfrost21
2005-06-23 03:01 am (UTC)
eistentialism is a spin on materialism..with a Nothing added...
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[User Picture]From: eumachina
2005-06-23 03:02 am (UTC)
well existentialists of course say existence precedes essence - you can either find or make the meaning of your life (what that boils down to is your experience in the world). stoics don't really espouse a meaning of life, except to say that with regards to pleasure or pain or anything inbetween, pursuit or avoidance is effectively absurd - one could say this because such pursuit/avoidance is a 'distraction' from true intellectual pursuits, as was a common thought in antiquity, or, by my own (and maybe others'? i don't know) reasoning - that such pursuit/avoidance limits your contact with reality, with your actual experience... not to mention that pleasure cannot actually be pursued (actively!), neither can pain be actively avoided.
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[User Picture]From: eumachina
2005-06-23 03:07 am (UTC)
that didn't really address your question hah.
well existentialism is materialist because of that belief that existence precedes essence. stoics don't have to be materialist or anything specific, depending on how they approach it, but historically stoics believed that what occurs to you in the material realm is inconsequential, implying dualism. but it really does depend. i'm definitely a materialist, and not a dualist. (i have to add in a lol with regards to dualism)
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From: _tigercommie
2005-06-23 03:13 am (UTC)
From what I have found Stoics feel that an excess of pleasure(and, of course, pain) keeps people from achieveing real happiness which does, at least in part, come from intelectual pursuits.

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From: _tigercommie
2005-06-23 03:18 am (UTC)
I have yet to really find out the finer aspects of Existentialism, but from what I had read they both seem to stress the importance of personal decision making and reasonable thought in a world that the individual can do little about.
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[User Picture]From: jackfrost21
2005-06-23 03:26 am (UTC)
finer aspects? seriously, dude, not be rude, but they are based on completely different frameworks..they shouldn't really even be compared like this.
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From: skurkey
2005-06-23 04:03 am (UTC)
Main Entry: ex·is·ten·tial·ism
Pronunciation: -'ten(t)-sh&-"li-z&m
Function: noun
: a chiefly 20th century philosophical movement embracing diverse doctrines but centering on analysis of individual existence in an unfathomable universe and the plight of the individual who must assume ultimate responsibility for his acts of free will without any certain knowledge of what is right or wrong or good or bad


Main Entry: sto·i·cism
Pronunciation: 'stO-&-"si-z&m
Function: noun
1 capitalized : the philosophy of the Stoics
2 : indifference to pleasure or pain : IMPASSIVENESS
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From: _tigercommie
2005-06-23 04:29 pm (UTC)
I think that is a gross oversimplification of Stoicism.

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From: skurkey
2005-06-23 10:19 pm (UTC)
Not to be rude, but to be the definition of rude.
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[User Picture]From: noobhat
2005-06-23 03:44 pm (UTC)
Existentialists put meaning and purpose into their lives.
Stoics dont care to put anything into their lives.

Id say theres a big difference there.
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From: _tigercommie
2005-06-23 04:31 pm (UTC)
Not even happiness and virtue?
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[User Picture]From: jackfrost21
2005-06-23 08:13 pm (UTC)
existentialism is marked by a sense of the absurdity of human life, not meaning and purpose--we have no meaning and purpose in existentialism, there is just nothing, in fact the philosophy is based on that assumption.

stoicism is deeply concerned with morality, morality in the face of a deterministic view of life.

if there is a point where the two are at opposites it here: existentialism has it that we are absolutely and completely free. stoicism deterministic.
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From: cynjja_galt
2005-09-06 03:30 am (UTC)
From what I have read on stoicism, and it is minimal and mainly from the standpoint of Epictetus, stoics believe(d) that if something did not effect them it should not be worried about. I also thought that, very basically, existentialists feel that man is the creator of his own fate, that what occurs is from the individual as opposed to some higher being. In my over simplification here I have come to see the difference in the two philosophies as this: the stoics reacted, but did not act. the existentialists act.

ok, now tell me what an idiot I am.
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