By Lawrence C. Becker
What might stoic ethics be like at the present time if stoicism had survived as a scientific method of moral thought, if it had coped effectively with the demanding situations of recent philosophy and experimental technological know-how? a brand new Stoicism proposes a solution to that query, provided from in the stoic culture yet with no the metaphysical and mental assumptions that smooth philosophy and technology have deserted. Lawrence Becker argues secular model of the stoic moral undertaking, in response to modern cosmology and developmental psychology, offers the foundation for a classy type of moral naturalism, within which nearly the entire demanding doctrines of the traditional Stoics will be basically restated and defended.
Becker argues, in line with the ancients, that advantage is something, now not many; that it, and never happiness, is the correct finish of all job; that it on my own is nice, all different issues being in simple terms rank-ordered relative to one another for the sake of the great; and that advantage is adequate for happiness. in addition, he rejects the preferred cartoon of the stoic as a grave determine, emotionally indifferent and able ordinarily of persistence, resignation, and dealing with soreness. on the contrary, he holds that whereas stoic sages may be able to suffer the extremes of human affliction, they don't have to sacrifice pleasure to have that skill, and he seeks to show our consciousness from the normal, healing a part of stoic ethical education to a reconsideration of its theoretical foundations.
"From the start to the top of this compact yet lucid publication, Becker skillfully brings to existence either the arguments and the intuitive charm of stoicism.... In its necessities [the new stoicism] is recognizable, with its relatively astringent rational attraction more suitable by means of Becker's centred and self-disciplined argumentation. Zeno, i believe, will be pleased."
-Brad Inwood, Apeiron
"A stimulating dialogue of ethics that's freed from the jejune or overly technical attitudes attribute of a lot present writing at the subject."
-Joseph Shea, n.b.: new from The Reader's Catalog
About the Author
Lawrence C. Becker is William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor within the Humanities and Professor of Philosophy on the collage of William and Mary. he's the writer of a number of books, together with Reciprocity and estate Rights: Philosophic Foundations. he's the coeditor, with Charlotte B. Becker, of the Encyclopedia of Ethics.
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Additional resources for A New Stoicism
We may thus come to ignore the fact that prudence always has a “qualiﬁed” physical substrate—that is, a substrate in a particular rational being. We must not forget the fact that stoics are particularists all the way to the ground. Everything that exists, and that has causal powers, is a particular. (Universals are “not-somethings” [Long and Sedley, The Hellenistic Philosophers, I, p. 164]. They are not corporeal. Nor are they merely shorthand names for collections of corporeal things. ”) There are dense metaphysical thickets in all of this, but we think ethics can avoid them.
It is our aim to avoid all three of those pitfalls. The task of working out our normative logic in detail has satisﬁed us that stoic ethics does indeed have a sound method of deriving moral judgments from facts about the world—a method that meets the following 36 4 N OR M AT I V E L O G I C tests: First, it is capable of representing the full range of behavioral norms relevant to normative judgments, and of assigning a clear meaning to “moral judgment” as opposed to other sorts of normative ones.
42). It is the task of Chapters 5–7 to describe and defend a conception of what that endeavor (virtue) is. Possibility and necessity. Matters of possibility and necessity ﬁgure prominently in stoic ethics, and so our normative logic includes modal operators, interpreted as uncontroversially as possible. The technical issues here we leave to the Appendix, and make only this informal observation about our use of the alethic modalities. We distinguish three ranges of modality: logical, theoretical, and practical.
A New Stoicism by Lawrence C. Becker